Australian news, and some related international items

Graham Glover scrutinises the language of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission

scrutiny-Royal-Commission CHAINTentative Findings Response – Graham Glover

Item 73 The risks associated with storing nuclear waste for many hundreds of thousands of years cannot be adequately assessed, considering the potential changes in geological, political, social, economical, environmental and global issues.


Item 78d  How can we predict a mature and stable political, social and economic structure over hundreds of thousands of years? In the last century we had two world wars. We already have economic inequality, some rogue regimes and terrorism impacting around the world. With mass migration of refugees and the effects of climate change having major impacts, initially on third world countries, how can we assume that South Australia will remain isolated from these events?
Item 83b Australia will only have a limited influence on maintaining the security of nuclear materials in its supply chain. Australia cannot guarantee the standards adopted by other countries in other industries, eg, there is considerable concern about food quality regarding pesticides, contamination and radiation from overseas countries. There will be no difference in the nuclear industry with potential disasters possible.
Item 88 How can financial assessments based on operating over about 100 years be relevant when the storage is required over many hundreds of thousands of years?
Item 91 Economic modelling makes lots of assumptions so that you can come up with whatever you want to. As time goes by, predicting economic outcomes over long periods of time becomes more and more erroneous. As an aside, in 1962, a careers adviser suggested that I “stop studying ‘bookkeeping’ because computers were coming in and when you have computers you won’t need accountants.” How wrong can you be!
Item 103 Social and community consent is critical. However, the process needs to be open and transparent and not whitewashed by lobby groups. What the community needs is the truth and not “spin” as is often demonstrated by politicians and “lobbyists”.
Item 119 How can anybody make this statement when operators (and some countries) have a vested interest in minimising any fallout from adverse findings or accidents? You make reference to the Chernobyl and Fukushima Daiichi disasters in Item 123. In relation to Chernobyl, particularly, there have been stories of cover-ups and minimal public release of the full impacts from this disaster. Remember how the “smoking lobby” lied to everyone in relation to the risks associated with cigarette smoking.
Item130 How can anybody make the statement “Those risks are, however, manageable and well-managed” when we have had major disasters? Over the never ending life span of a nuclear waste dump how can we be sure that security risks such as terrorist attacks, weapons proliferation risks or increased tensions/sanctions with neighbouring countries do not eventuate.
Item132 The development of a new port and railway infrastructure adds significantly to the risks. Transporting nuclear waste has inherent risks. These activities are likely to be provided by or leased to the private sector, which will in turn require more risk management by the Government.
Item 150 The Federal and State Government will have to underwrite the risks if the project goes ahead, which will require taxpayer funds. In the event of a disaster the Government (and therefore, the taxpayer) will be required to sort out the mess.
Item 155 Any chance of South Australia being regarded as the “Clean & Green” or the “Carbon Neutral” State will be overshadowed if this proposal goes ahead. Impacts on agriculture, tourism and the renewable energy sectors could be significant, irrespective of whether a major nuclear accident has occurred or not. South Australia could be known as the “Dumb” or the “Dump” State.

May 6, 2016 - Posted by | significant submissions to 6 May

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