Australian news, and some related international items

One Western Australian speaks out against radioactive waste dumping

Ben 14 May 15 As a resident of the midwest and has lived and worked on and around the area of Badja Station, I am totally against this idea in our back yard.

I as a former employee, have contributed to the success of GML during the exploration stages of the Karrara mining operation.
Thanks to that I got to see and feel this country and now regret the destruction that has already occurred

So I as one individual totally reject GML nominating this area as a facility for radioactive waste storage which will inevitably lead to establishing a much larger facility to accommodate international nuclear waste for avery handsome $$ profit to those involved.

NO PANGEA HERE !!! Please.

Yalgoo shire WA

I hope and wish the Widi people are successful in their claim of native title of this area. It is beautiful country, surrounded by at least six vibrant, active towns / communities well within a 150km radius of the proposed radioactive waste dump as well as numerous exploration (because of the mineral wealth) and tourist activities in the area, not forgetting those living off and trying to protect this area

I object to, and will support anyone against, this proposal.


May 13, 2015 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, Western Australia | 1 Comment

Crystal ball-gazing in South Australia’s Nuclear Commission ISSUES PAPER No. 3

scrutiny-Royal-CommissionDennis Matthews, 13 May 15 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE (sic) ROYAL COMMISSION ISSUES PAPER THREE


Once again we have an issues paper full of pro-nuclear conjecture and crystal ball-gazing with statements like “research has been undertaken”, “under development”, “are proposed”,   “soon to demonstrate”, “could potentially”, “could, if commercialised”, “may be”,” might encourage” and “could have”.  The history of the nuclear industry is a history of overstated optimism. Policy makers would do well to stick to the facts rather than optimistic forecasts from vested interests.

Ionising has been constantly dropped from “ionising radiation”, especially in the section on operational health and safety.  At best this is sloppy science but given the history of the nuclear industry, it might well be considered mischievous.

The word “nuclear” is frequently dropped especially when talking about nuclear reactors. This demonstrates the sensitivity of the nuclear industry to its image. Ironically, the nuclear industry appears to be loathe to admit that it has anything to do with its own scientific and technical foundation. Continue reading

May 13, 2015 Posted by | NUCLEAR ROYAL COMMISSION 2016 | Leave a comment


Should SA accept high-level nuclear waste from overseas?
How much money might be made by taking nuclear waste from other countries? There is no precedent to base an estimate on. It is doubtful whether it would generate any more
than a fraction of the revenue that some lobbyists claim it might. There are many constraints, such as the fact that some countries with significant nuclear power programs − such as Russia, France, and India − operate reprocessing plants so would be unlikely to want to send spent fuel to Australia. BHP Billiton’s submission to the Switkowski Review states
that the utilities to which it sells uranium “generally regard their spent fuel as an asset”.
Prof. John Veevers from Macquarie University states: “Tonnes of enormously dangerous
radioactive waste in the northern hemisphere, 20,000 kms from its destined dump in
Australia where it must remain intact for at least 10,000 years. These magnitudes − of
tonnage, lethality, distance of transport, and time − entail great inherent risk.
scrutiny-Royal-Commission CHAINSOUTH AUSTRALIA’S NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE ROYAL COMMISSION ISSUES- SUMMARY -May 2015 Prepared on behalf of the Conservation Council SA by Dr Jim Green, Friends of the Earth, Melbourne. The Conservation Council of South Australia (Conservation SA) is the peak environment group in the state, representing around 50 non-profit environmental organisations.
Conservation SA does not support an expansion of South Australia’s role in the nuclear cycle. Uranium mining in SA has a history of very significant environmental impacts that show no signs of abating. The nuclear industry has caused suffering and displacement of Aboriginal communities over many decades, from the toxic legacy of Maralinga nuclear testing, uranium mining operations and attempts to impose unwanted nuclear waste dumps.
All forms of energy generation have some environmental impact. To determine the lowest impact options, we need to assess each technology across its entire life cycle. Unfortunately, this is rarely done. Emissions from the nuclear fuel cycle will increase as relatively high-grade uranium ores are mined out and are replaced by the mining of lower-grade ores. Nuclear power brings with it a range of unavoidable risks to public health and safety that other energy options simply do not. Nuclear is also a high-cost option that has never been viable without generous taxpayer support.
The Royal Commission provides an opportunity for all of the impacts of the nuclear fuel cycle to be assessed, and Conservation SA will be actively participating to ensure that it does. This document outlines a summary of our thinking. For more information see the full issues paper.

Continue reading

May 13, 2015 Posted by | NUCLEAR ROYAL COMMISSION 2016 | Leave a comment

Australian govt turns from Northern Territory in search for vulnerable communities to host nuclear wastes

Nuclear waste dump unlikely in NT after land councils, stations refuse to nominate site ABC News, 11 May 15, By Anthony Stewart The Northern Territory appears unlikely to house the Federal Government’s proposed radioactive waste dump after major land holders fail to nominate a site.

The Federal Government began a renewed searchfor a site to store Australia’s intermediate-level nuclear waste and dispose of low-level waste in March this year. A formal application process closed on the May 5.

The ABC confirmed the Northern Land Council, Central Land Council, and Northern Territory Government had not nominated any land. Gilnockie and Supplejack Downs Stations also decided against participating in the process.


In a statement, the Federal Government refused to confirm whether any other organisation had nominated land.

“Details on nominations will be made public following the close of the nomination process and consideration by the Minister for Industry and Science. On current timeframes, this is expected in July 2015,” the statement read………

Anti-nuclear campaigner Lauren Mellor said it was the end of a long fight against nuclear waste in the Territory. “It’s very good news. We have spent the last decade with residents and traditional owners of the Northern Territory fighting a nuclear dump process,” she said. “The Federal Government has pulled out of the trenches in the Northern Territory.”

She said the fight had been pushed to other parts of Australia. “Unfortunately our concern is they will go and target another vulnerable community as they’ve done many times before to try and push them to house a national or even international dump,” Ms Mellor said.

Several organisations in both South Australia and the Western Australia have indicated they have nominated land under the process.

May 13, 2015 Posted by | aboriginal issues, Northern Territory, wastes | Leave a comment

Iron ore miner in Western Australia applies to host low level nuclear waste facility

wastesGindalbie applies to host nuclear waste facility in WA’s Mid West By Emily Piesse Iron ore miner Gindalbie Metals has confirmed it has nominated part of its land holding in WA’s Mid West as a potential site for a low level radioactive waste dump.

The site, on Badja Station in the Shire of Yalgoo, has been put forward by the company under a national tender process by the Federal Government. The nuclear waste facility, which would be a national repository for low level waste, would be the first of its kind in Australia.

Most low level waste is stored in hospitals, universities and other private facilities but this would act as a central storage centre.

The Shire of Leonora in WA’s Goldfields has also confirmed it has supported an application to have the nuclear waste dump on a pastoral station’s freehold land between Leonora and Malcolm.

A spokesperson for Gindalbie confirmed the miner had submitted Badja Station to be assessed, but said it was too early to comment as the Government was yet to finalise its shortlist of sites.

Badja Station is currently the subject of a native title claim by the Widi people.

Widi spokesperson Clayton Lewis said he had no prior knowledge of Gindalbie’s proposal.”It was a bolt out of the blue … [we’re] just amazed that it’s going to happen or potentially going to happen in our country,” he said.

“We think if we can get a decent body of support at this early stage we can certainly contest it.”

A spokesperson for federal Industry and Science Minister Ian Macfarlane would not confirm whether Badja Station was under consideration, but said initial site assessments had begun.

Under the selection process, states and territories will not have the right to veto the Government’s site selection.

A shortlist of nominated sites is expected to be made public in July.

May 13, 2015 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, wastes, Western Australia | 2 Comments

World Bank warns Malawi not to re-open Paladin Australia’s uneconomic uranium mine

thumbs-downMalawi warned against reopening uranium mine May 12, 2015   – The World Bank has warned Malawi against reopening its only uranium mine, saying the project should be put on hold until global prices improve.

Australia mining company, Paladin Energy, is developing Malawi’s only uranium mine, the Kayelekera uranium mine, in Karonga, northern Malawi. The project was initial suspended in 2014 because of the then unfavourable price climate, but there are indications that the company plans to resume operations in the coming months. “Whether or not the mine at Kayelekera eventually resumes operations will depend primarily on future prospects for global uranium prices, for which the immediate outlook is uncertain,” the World Bank told Malawi in its latest report.Uranium from mining is used almost entirely as fuel for nuclear power plants.

In 2013, Malawi was ranked as the third largest producer of uranium in Africa and tenth in the world. It is behind Namibia and Niger in Africa.

Last year, uranium global prices crashed to $36, from $51 per pound. This posed a major setback to Paladin Energy Africa, having invested heavily on the premise that prices will climb to $70. The Kayelekera uranium deposit was discovered by UK’s CEGB firm and a feasibility study was subsequently undertaken in the 1980s. Paladin acquired the deposit in 1997, accepted a Bankable Feasibility Study early in 2007, and, following environmental approval, undertook a $220 million development. The mine was opened in April 2009.

Paladin Energy (Africa) Ltd holds Paladin’s 85 percent interest following the Development Agreement with the Government of Malawi in control of the remaining 15 percent. Kayelekera production commenced in mid-2009, and in 2012 production reached 1103 tU, followed by 1134 tU in 2013.

May 13, 2015 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business, uranium | Leave a comment

A “corrupt process” brought proposal for Bjørn Lomborg Consensus Centre

sea level flat earthBjørn Lomborg centre earmarked for UWA in ‘corrupt process’, says Labor MP

Alannah MacTiernan says proposal to fund centre at the University of Western Australia came ‘directly from the prime minister’s office’ A research centre linked to controversial Danish academic Bjørn Lomborg was earmarked for the University of Western Australia through a “corrupt” process initiated by the prime minister’s office, parliament has been told.

The university backed out of the proposal, which was to have been funded by the federal government, after protests by staff and students.The West Australian Labor MP Alannah MacTiernan said on Tuesday that science has been the big loser under the Abbott government.

She said it was curious that the government had found $4m for the Australian Consensus Centre, a think tank which had at its heart a commitment to cherry-pick the scientific evidence which argued against urgent action on climate change.

MacTiernan said the education minister Christopher Pyne says the decision to fund the centre at UWA followed a proposal put forward by the university and Lomborg, but vice-chancellor Paul Johnson said the proposal was not initiated by the university.

The proposal arose out of discussions between Lomborg and the government, MacTiernan said. “It seems the offer came directly from the prime minister’s office and came to UWA only after the Australian Catholic University had rejected it,” she said.

“Extraordinarily, this special research initiative didn’t come through the Australian Research Council or any peer review.” It was a “corrupt process”, she said.

May 13, 2015 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, secrets and lies, Western Australia | Leave a comment

AREVA’s uranium plan knocked back as uneconomic by Canadian review board

antnuke-relevantflag-canadaReview board recommends against Areva Canada uranium mine  May 11, 201 By Rod Nickel WINNIPEG, Manitoba – A review board in the northern Canadian territory of Nunavut has recommended that Areva’s AREVA.PA planned uranium mine should not proceed, due to uncertainty about timing of the company’s plans to build the mine.

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission released the Nunavut Impact Review Board’s report on AREVA-Medusa1Monday.The review board makes recommendations to Canadian federal ministers who are responsible for the decision.

Uranium prices have been weak since 2011’s Fukushima disaster in Japan, which caused that country to take its reactors off-line. The slump has led uranium producers to put some plans for new mines on hold.

The Nunavut review board considered the project’s social, economic and environmental impacts, but concluded that it could not adequately do this with no clear development schedule. The board said its recommendation, if adopted by Ottawa, does not mean that Areva could not apply again for approval.

Areva spokeswoman Veronique Loewen said the company was disappointed and is reviewing the report.The project involves two separate open-pit mine sites and a milling operation.


May 13, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Australian electricity utility Origin launches solar energy leasing programme

community solarOrigin launches solar services program for homes, small business, REneweconomy, By  on 12 May 2015  Major Australian utility, Origin Energy, is set to launch a solar leasing program in three separate states, focusing on small-scale residential and commercial solar systems.

The utility said on Friday last week it would start rolling out the program in Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and the Gold Coast, where it would install and maintain solar systems, at no up-front cost, on household and small business roofs.

The move by Origin follows the launch, a week earlier, of the battery storage product from rival gentailer, AGL Energy – which was announced ahead of schedule, and to coincide with Tesla’s sensational energy storage reveal.

AGL’s first “proposition” – customers are being asked able to “register their interest” – will be a limited number of 6kWh batteries the size of a large suitcase, made to suit a family home with around 3-4.5kW of rooftop PV. And while this makes AGL Australia’s first energy retailer to stake a claim in the energy storage market, Origin says it will be the first to enter the roof-rental space, and says it hopes to expand its program into other cities.

The solar power purchase agreement market represents huge and largely untapped potential in Australia. Companies like SolarGen and SunEdison are already taking advantage – the soon to be launched 350kW PV system at Tyrrell’s Wines Hunter Valley vineyard, which we report on here, offers one of the nation’s first commercial examples.

Utilities, however, have been slower to get with the program………

May 13, 2015 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, solar | 1 Comment

Labor and business groups say No to reviews of Renewable Energy Target

Labor says no renewable energy deal if government keeps reviews SMH, May 12, 2015   National political reporter The long-running saga of Australia’s renewable energy target has entered another round with Labor declaring there will be no deal if the government continues to review the scheme.

An eleventh hour government decision to retain two-yearly reviews has derailed a new bipartisan agreement that would have reduced the target from 41,000 gigawatt hours of renewable energy production by 2020 to 33,000.

Macfarlane forked tongueThe move, believed to have been put forward by Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane, has prompted a furious reaction from the clean energy industry, which has demanded that the government stand by its promise to scrap two-yearly reviews.

The Clean Energy Council and a raft of energy companies have urged the government to scrap the reviews, while the Australian Chamber of Commerce has said there should be no further inquiries into the scheme until 2020.

The Labor caucus agreed early on Tuesday that a figure of 33,000 could form the basis of an agreement with the government but the opposition could not support a plan that included two-yearly reviews………

May 13, 2015 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Compelling case against the Trans-Pacific Partnership

logo-anti-TPPhighly-recommendedSovereignty For International Investors (Trans-Pacific antnuke-relevantPartnership (TPP)) May 11th, 2015 Elizabeth Warren makes a compelling case against the Trans-Pacific Partnership in The Trans-Pacific Partnership clause everyone should oppose, where she says:…

ISDS [Investor-State Dispute Settlement] would allow foreign companies to challenge U.S. laws — and potentially to pick up huge payouts from taxpayers — without ever stepping foot in a U.S. court. Here’s how it would work. Imagine that the United States bans a toxic chemical that is often added to gasoline because of its health and environmental consequences. If a foreign company that makes the toxic chemical opposes the law, it would normally have to challenge it in a U.S. court. But with ISDS, the company could skip the U.S. courts and go before an international panel of arbitrators. If the company won, the ruling couldn’t be challenged in U.S. courts, and the arbitration panel could require American taxpayers to cough up millions — and even billions — of dollars in damages.

If that seems shocking, buckle your seat belt. ISDS could lead to gigantic fines, but it wouldn’t employ independent judges.Instead, highly paid corporate lawyers would go back and forth between representing corporations one day and sitting in judgment the next. Maybe that makes sense in an arbitration between two corporations, but not in cases between corporations and governments. If you’re a lawyer looking to maintain or attract high-paying corporate clients, how likely are you to rule against those corporations when it’s your turn in the judge’s seat? Continue reading

May 13, 2015 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics international | Leave a comment

UN to launch a global Sustainable Development Agenda

flag-UN.In September, The UN Launches A Major Sustainable Development Agenda For The Entire Planet, The Economic Collapse By Michael Snyder, on May 11th, 2015   The UN plans to launch a brand new plan for managing the entire globe at the Sustainable Development Summit that it will be hosting from September 25th to September 27th.  Some of the biggest names on the planet, including Pope Francis, will be speaking at this summit.  This new sustainable agenda focuses on climate change of course, but it also specifically addresses topics such as economics, agriculture, education and gender equality.  For those wishing to expand the scope of “global governance”, sustainable development is the perfect umbrella because just about all human activity affects the environment in some way.  The phrase “for the good of the planet” can be used as an excuse to micromanage virtually every aspect of our lives.  So for those that are concerned about the growing power of the United Nations, this summit in September is something to keep an eye on.  Never before have I seen such an effort to promote a UN summit on the environment, and this new sustainable development agenda is literally a framework for managing the entire globe. Continue reading

May 13, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Electromagnetic radiation as a cause of brain cancer

Australian Researcher: Phone Radiation is a Hotline to Brain Cancer, Sputnik News,   12.05.2015  A highly respected Australian doctor, currently in remission from brain cancer, is speaking out on his belief that radiation from wifi, cell phones and their towers is a major factor in increasing brain cancer rates.

radiation spectrum

 Dr. John Tickell is attempting to raise awareness and is calling for more funding for brain cancer research, as it has become the number one most deadly cancer for young people in Australia.  According to the Australian government, there are 35 new cases of the cancer discovered each week with four out of five cases being fatal in the first five years………..

The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association is denying any detrimental health effects from their radiation, but the World Health Organization has recently upgraded the radiation threat to category B2, meaning “possibly carcinogenic.”

“You can say you can’t prove it — in my mind it is proven looking at the studies that are unfunded by industry,” he said.

The largest study to take place so far was conducted among 5000 cancer patients.  The study found that there was no increased risk of overall cancer, but cellphone use was linked to patients having a 40% increased likeliness of developing Glioma, a common type of brain cancer.

The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association is denying any detrimental health effects from their radiation, but the World Health Organization has recently upgraded the radiation threat to category B2, meaning “possibly carcinogenic.”

“You can say you can’t prove it — in my mind it is proven looking at the studies that are unfunded by industry,” he said.

The largest study to take place so far was conducted among 5000 cancer patients.  The study found that there was no increased risk of overall cancer, but cellphone use was linked to patients having a 40% increased likeliness of developing Glioma, a common type of brain cancer.

May 13, 2015 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health | Leave a comment