Australian news, and some related international items

Jay Weatherill’s nuclear political suicide

weatherill-martyrJim Green: Jay Weatherill willing to commit political suicide with push to turn South Australia into world’s nuclear waste dump, Jim Green, The Advertiser November 15, 2016 PREMIER Jay Weatherill previously said that “there’s no doubt that there’s a massive issue of trust in government … that’s why we started the whole citizen’s jury process” into the nuclear waste import proposal.

Yet the Premier has now overturned the SA Citizens’ Jury on Nuclear Waste’s verdict with his decision to continue to promote his plan to import high-level nuclear waste. His overturning of the jury’s verdict will worsen public distrust of government.

The citizen’s jury was emphatic in its rejection of the proposed nuclear dump – 70 per cent argued that it should not proceed “under any circumstances”.They clearly explained their reasons, including respect for Aboriginal traditional owners, scepticism about fanciful economic claims, concerns that the royal commission and the government downplayed environmental and public health risks, and distrust that the government could deliver the project on time and on budget.

The Premier justified his decision to overturn the jury’s verdict by referring to a ‘Community Views Report’ released on Sunday, reflecting the results of a statewide consultation process.

But his take on the report was extremely selective.

The Premier noted that 43 per cent of people questioned in surveys and focus groups supported further consideration of the nuclear waste dump proposal whereas 37 per cent were opposed.

He failed to note that many other people made their voice heard during the community consultation process.

  Overall, 4365 people were opposed to further consideration of the proposal while only 3032 supported further consideration.
 The Premier completely ignored the other findings of the Community Views Report. Fifty-three per cent of respondents opposed the plan to import high-level nuclear waste while just 31 per cent supported the plan.

Over three-quarters of Aboriginal respondents opposed the plan.

The community consultation process found that only 20 per cent of respondents were confident that nuclear waste could be transported and stored safely, while 70 percent were not confident.

The consultation process found that the number of people confident in the government’s ability to regulate any new nuclear industry activities in SA (2125 people) was barely half the number who were not confident (4190 people).

The consultation process found that 66 per cent of respondents were not confident that a nuclear waste import project would bring significant economic benefits to SA.

November 16, 2016 - Posted by | NUCLEAR ROYAL COMMISSION 2016, politics, wastes

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