Australian news, and some related international items

The SA Government should now dump its plans for a nuclear waste dump.

logo-australia-institute The Australia Institute team, 8 Nov 16 Yesterday, 350 ordinary citizens handed the SA Government a “stunning and overwhelming rejection” of its plans to build nuclear waste dump in South Australia.

The citizens’ jury’s task was to consider whether South Australia should import high level nuclear waste from other countries and bury it for money. After hearing about the proposal from various experts, more than two thirds of them said no, not “under any circumstances”.

The Australia Institute’s involvement focused on an area that no one else was challenging: the dodgy economic modelling and heroic estimates of how much money the dump would deliver to the state.

Richard Denniss addressed the citizens’ jury last weekend, highlighting a few key points:

Richard’s appearance was just the latest part of our involvement in the SA nuclear debate. In July, Rod Campbell had addressed an earlier citizens’ jury, leading to the headline in The Australian: Citizens’ jury questions economics of SA nuclear dump.

Our earlier submission on the economics of the dump and headline appearance on Today Tonightmade a big impact, with the Royal Commissioner, Kevin Scarce, saying he would take our submission “apart piece by piece.” We have also had a number of opinion pieces published on the subject.

Commissioner Scarce never did find anything wrong with our submission. But the citizens of South Australia have taken his work apart, piece by flawed piece. The Citizen’s Jury final report outlined concerns about the lack of consent from Traditional Owners, and showed that while 70% opposed the nuclear waste dump, 82% thought the economic case made was weak. Here’s a quote from the jury’s final report:

“It is impossible to provide an informed response to the issue of Economics because the findings in the RCR are based on unsubstantiated assumptions. This has caused the forecast estimates to provide inaccurate, optimistic, unrealistic economic projections.”

The SA Government should now dump its plans for a nuclear waste dump.

The Australia Institute aims to produce research that matters, and this is a case where we can see how lots of hard work over a long period changes minds. The Citizens’ Jury is to be congratulated for delivering a big win for the South Australian taxpayer, Traditional Owners, the environment, and common sense.


November 7, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Nuclear Citizens Jury, politics, wastes | 1 Comment

Aboriginal people will never agree to a high level waste dump – Nuclear Citizens Jury Report

handsoffNuclear citizens’ jury: five surprising things INDaily , 7 Nov 16 “……The State Government is today pondering what to make of the report of the second citizens’ jury which looked at whether South Australia should pursue the establishment of a facility to accept the world’s high level nuclear waste.

Two thirds of the 350 jurors rejected the proposition – under any circumstances.

The report shows not only a lack of faith in the concept outlined in the state’s nuclear industry royal commission, but along the way, the 50-odd pages of the citizen’s jury report has offered an indictment of a whole generation of South Australian politicians.

You wouldn’t know it from much of the media coverage since the report was handed down yesterday, but a key factor in the jury’s decision was the overwhelming Aboriginal opposition to a nuclear waste dump. Continue reading

November 7, 2016 Posted by | aboriginal issues, Nuclear Citizens Jury | Leave a comment