Parliamentary Committee considering if Australia should be involved in making Generation IV nuclear reactors
The gift of the ‘GIF’: Generation IV International Forum, Independent Australia, 19 April 2017 The Turnbull Government has quietly signed Australia up to the GIF Framework Agreement for the development of Gen IV nuclear reactors and is currently conducting a Parliamentary Inquiry of which most of us are unaware, writes Noel Wauchope.
YOU HAVE probably never heard of the “GIF”.
I hadn’t, until just this week when by chance, I heard of the Parliament Inquiry into the Framework Agreement for International Collaboration on Research and Development of Generation IV Nuclear Energy Systems.
The Committee consists of nine Liberal MPs, six Labor and one Green.
That inquiry is being held now and the Committee calls, or more correctly, whispers, for submissions by 28 April 2017.
It is all about the GIF — Generation IV International Forum. The Australian Government signed up to this, in 2016, without any public discussion.
What is The Generation IV International Forum (GIF)?
An international collection of 14 countries: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, France, Japan, South Korea, South Africa, the UK and the USA (original charter members, 2005); Switzerland, Euratom, China, Russia and Australia (signed later).
‘ … nuclear energy is significant now and also seen as vital for the future’.
What is the 2005 Framework Agreement AKA “the charter”?
According to the World Nuclear Association the 2005 Framework Agreement:
‘ … formally commits them [signatories] to participate in the development of one or more Generation IV systems selected by GIF for further R&D.’
Australia signed the charter on 22 June 2016 represented by Dr Adi Patterson, COE of the Australia Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO). — pending this Joint Standing Committee on Treaties review. ANSTO is to be the implementing agent.
When the Australian Government quietly signed up to the GIF, it made no commitment to any particular action towards developing new nuclear reactors. Other countries – including Japan, Canada, France, South Korea – have committed to working on particular types of Generation IV reactors. Australia might be expected to not only fully sign up as a member of the charter but perhaps also to provide funding and resources to develop one or more types.
Australia’s signing of the GIF
Media reports indicate Australia made a bid, or approach, to join GIF. The active seeking out of such an agreement that is at odds with public opinion, at odds with the current government’s policy position on nuclear power and is inconsistent with Australian laws, which prohibit the use of this technology, is astounding…….
ANSTO makes a number of questionable assumptions about Australia joining in developing new nuclear reactors. For example, ANSTO claims that it would ‘further Australia’s non-proliferation and nuclear safety objectives’, and ‘further strengthen our claim as the most advanced nuclear country in SEAP’ and will position Australia to develop Generation IV reactors.
There are so many questions about — one hardly knows where to start:…….https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/the-gift-of-the-gif-generation-iv-international-forum,10215#.WPbL2mlNX7g.twitter
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