The past week in Australian nuclear news
Uranium prices continue to plummet – with no indication of a recovery any time soon. Nuclear industry in decline, with more reactors closing than new ones starting.
Martin Ferguson, our Minister for Promoting Nuclear Power, excelled himself this week, telling beaut furphies to salivating uranium executives, in Perth. He reassured them that nuclear power was clean, and getting cheaper all the time!
Senators John Madigan and Nick Xenophon have come to the rescue of all those ailing people, laid low by wind energy – with the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Amendment (Excessive Noise from Wind Farms ). What a relief! This Bill could help stop those evil wind farms. (But wait a minute – didn’t CSIRO find that they’re harmless?)
Kyoto Protocol – up for renewal. Australia, seen as a leader amongst the many countries acting on climate change, urged to join the new agreement.
Renewable Energy Target – under pressure from fossil fuel lobby, as the RET and carbon tax help to get Australia’s renewable energy up and running. Carbon tax not making much difference to prices. The first official consumer price figures show a far lower impact than predicted by the Treasury.
Falling demand for electricity highlights problems of utilities, and of regulation, and leads to suspension of Dalton coal-fired power station in NSW.
Australia joins a very wishy washy pact with New Zealand, supposed to strengthen the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT ). What we really need is a Nuclear Weapons Convention and get some teeth into the movement to stop nuclear weapons.
Queensland. Uranium lobby, mainstream media, and some politicians were ecstatic, when Premier Campbell Newman ditched his pre-election promises, and his recent statements that Queensland’s uranium ban would stay. A few others, like farmers, environmentalists, and people interested in renewable energy – weren’t so keen. Some thought it a bit of a pity to turn the “sunshine state” into the “radioactive state”. Watch out now, as Newman and the nuke lobby turn their attention to the Nuclear Facilities Prohibition Act, which requires a federal plebiscite to allow nuclear power plants.
South Australia: after years of internecine fighting, the partners in the Four Mile uranium project boast that the mine is now to go ahead. Australian should hang their heads in shame to have ever let nuclear weapons maker General Atomics get into this country to almost fully own these 2 mines – Beverley and Four Mile.
Western Australia Aboriginal opposition to Wiluna uranium mine continues. Toro’s mine is far from becoming a reality.
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