Australian news, and some related international items

Tony Abbott does not understand that the Muckaty nuclear waste dump plan is a national issue

Abbott weighs in on dump dispute, 06 Jul, 2012 FEDERAL Opposition Leader Tony Abbott will be just as despised as Resources Minister Martin Fergushima if he keeps banging on about dumping nuclear waste in the pristine Barkly.

Speaking in Darwin this week, Mr Abbott said that a nuclear waste facility would be in the national interest.

“I am confident that any waste arrangements here in the Territory will be conducted in the most effective way, with the least possible risk to the environment,” he said.

“You know, sometimes local concerns do have to give way to the national interest.

“The Territory waste centre will be a long, long way from built-up areas … and this is why it is appropriate to find a remote location for these kinds of facilities.”

National environment group, Beyond Nuclear Initiative (BNI), rejected Mr Abbott’s comments, saying the proposal to build the radioactive dump at Muckaty was based on politics rather than science. BNI spokesperson, Nat Wasley, said a senior departmental official admitted to a senate inquiry that the push for a remote dump site was political.

“Mr Abbott is also trying to dismiss concern about the Muckaty dump as ‘local’,” she said.

“Yet the Australian Council of Trade Unions and Australian Conservation Foundation – the peak trade union and environment bodies in the country – as well as other unions, health and human rights organisations have clearly stated opposition to the proposal. “Territory and national concerns reach beyond the environmental risks of transporting and storing radioactive waste in remote areas to include the social aspects of the flawed process that led to Muckaty being nominated.”

Ms Wasley said any attempts to advance the Northern Territory dump plan would be met with fierce national resistance.

July 6, 2012 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics

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