Australian news, and some related international items

Ken and Carole Wetherby demand that Eyre Peninsula remain ‘clean and green’ – NO nuclear waste dump

Submission To: Senate Standing Committees on Economics  Regards “Selection process for a national radioactive waste management facility in South Australia”Ken and Carole Wetherby (Submission No. 12) 

We live on a ‘hobby farm’ 10km east of Cleve which is outside the Kimba District Council.

Terms of Reference, our comments refer to items b, d and e. b)

“Broad community support”, the level of community support required for acceptance should be set at a 2/3 majority- then stick to this figure – don’t ‘waffle’.

d) Essentially the ‘community benefit program’ is a bribe and that is what it should be called.

e) This is the point which we have disagreed with from the outset. The establishment of a radioactive waste management facility at Kimba will have an effect on the whole of Eyre Peninsula, not just the Kimba Council area and we should all be allowed to have our say.

The ‘clean green’ reputation of the agricultural, fishing/aquaculture and tourism industries could be negatively affected. “Hobby farm’ values could also be affected – in our case we retired to our ‘hobby farm’ at Cleve because of Eyre Peninsula’s ‘clean green’ reputation. The agricultural zone on Eyre Peninsula is isolated from other farming areas by Spencers Gulf, the Nullarbor Plain and pastoral land to the north and as such it has a unique ability, as an entity, to claim and retain our “clean green’ reputation.

May 12, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

South Australian Premier  Steven Marshall now doing a backflip on nuclear waste dumping

NUCLEAR WASTE DUMP: NOW A FEDERAL ELECTION ISSUE?  Mark Simpkin  Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 10 May 18 


On the 11 November 2016, Steven Marshall declared, ‘I have a much greater vision for SA than becoming the world’s nuclear waste dump.’
Source: Eureka Street. Michele Madigan 16 November 2016

Of course you’d have to be pretty naive to think this isn’t step 1 to becoming the world’s nuclear waste dump?

Steven Marshall had previously said he would not support the facility and declared last year “a nuclear waste dump is now dead”.
Source: ABC News.
First posted 8 Jun 2017, 10:46am

Given deadlines are fast approaching and this seems as though its a foregone conclusion, it would seem our Premier Steven Marshall was unable to stay to his word and Malcolm Turnbull and Senator Matthew Canavan have been able to roll him. Embarrassing?

Then again when you’re offering 4 times property value to locals and offering other opposition segments houses and cars in exchange for their support, it’s hard to stop matters.

Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA Flinders Local Action GroupNo Radioactive Waste Facility for Kimba District No Dump Alliance

May 12, 2018 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Facebook writer Holly Whittenbury questions University Lecturer on “low level wastes” bound for South Australia

Holly Whittenbury created a poll. No Nuclear Waste Dump Anywhere in South Australia, 12 May 18 

If you could say anything to a senior lecturer at one of the state’s public Universities who declared the proposed nuclear waste facility in the state’s north will only be used to store smoke alarms and similar grade nuclear waste after their use, what would you say to him?
LIAR!! Get your facts straight

Zac Eagle Lies. It’s gonna store vitrified waste brought back from France which is classified high level in Europe and must be isolated from biosphere for hundreds of thousands of years and of course it’s gonna store the nuclear waste from Lucas Heights reactor and we must not forget the leaking barrels from Woomera.
All intermediate and high level waste.

Karrie Lannstrom Liar Liar Earth on Fire..Our nuclear waste dump will become the world’s nuclear waste dump..they been plotting it fir decades..and what about the used plutonium rods coming back from France..last time the first shipment was on a condemned boat…evil lying pro nuclear trying ti do a guilt trip in us with saying it only medical waste…NOT !!!!
Noel Wauchope It will store very very little, if any, medical wastes, as the vast majority of medical radioisotopes have very short half-lives – hours to a few days – no need for transporting 1700km to Kimba. Perhaps the biggest of ANSTO’s lies is the one about needing a rural South Australian radioactive waste dump as a MEDICAL NECESSITY.

May 12, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Turnbull’s budget shows complete ignorance about climate change

Hours before the doors swung open on the budget lock-up, the bright sparks on Twitter had already started a new meme. #KeepMyTenDollars was a reminder that Australians would gladly forgo an extra few bucks a week for to see the governments prioritise spending on health, education and renewables, not corporate and high-end tax cuts. It was certainly funnier than Scott Morrison’s bizarre attempt at humour.

“What have you achieved?” would have been an odd opening line to the government’s pre-election budget speech, were it not coming from the mouth of the man who famously waved a lump of coal around in Parliament to declare his love for the toxic fuel. The joke was lost on the rest of us, but it was the punch line that betrayed the confusion of the government.

The world’s leading economists have been warning for decades that the damage caused to the climate by burning coal, oil and gas poses one of the most serious threats to the global economy. The cost of destruction in agriculture, tourism, finance, insurance, property, and even mining caused by sweeping floods, droughts and bushfire caused by distorting the world’s life support systems is nearly unimaginable.

Indeed, it’s hard to imagine a sector that will not be severely impacted by climate change. But collapsing costs in renewables and a rising global movement against pollution is changing the headwinds – not that our Government seems to have noticed.

You would think that a Government that waxes lyrical about intergenerational equity would have at least a primary school grasp on climate change. Yet the forbidden words were nowhere to be seen in the budget speech, save for a small reference to the Government’s plans to walk away from innovation in the renewables sector (whatever happened to that dogged commitment to ‘jobs and innovation’). The devil, as always, was in the detail of the budget papers.

Budgets are a statement of values that mark the principles of legislators. In this year’s budget, the Government’s values were laid bare, with climate spending slashed by almost half, falling further to $1.2 billion by 2022. Analysis by the Australian Conservation Foundation found that the under-resourced Department of Environment and Energy will have an axe taken to its bottom line, with spending slated to plunge by 43 per cent on 2013 levels (when the Government took office) by 2022.

The Renewable Energy Target will be abolished by 2020. Taxpayer largesse will continue to flow to the Government’s friends in fossil fuel companies, with $30 billion in diesel tax subsidies pouring into private companies over the forecast period. No additional money for renewables or climate mitigation and adaptation will be forthcoming.

The opportunities that come from renewable energy, which are now cheaper as well as being cleaner and healthier, are being seized by the community of nations while Australia clings to a wheezing, out-dated economy.

On the same day the budget was delivered, the meter at Mauna Loa, Hawaii clocked 410 parts per million of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere – a level not seen in 800,000 years, well before humans developed agriculture, let alone donned suits and waved rocks around in Parliament.

The other critical budget, the carbon budget, is in obvious deficit.

The Government should keep my ten dollars, and use it to achieve real progress towards a coal-free, more liveable society. Most Australians would gladly chip in for wind and solar, and our vast weight of numbers will eventually prevail.

It’s clear after this budget that it will take concerted action from all Australians everywhere for the Government to regain its grip on reality.

May 12, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics | Leave a comment

Very high levels of radioactive cesium along the planned torch relay route for the Tokyo Olympics

the proposed torch route samples had the highest mean radioactivity due to their close proximity to the plant. Based on the measurement, we estimated qualitatively that the radiation exposure of people living near the Azuma Sports Park area was 20.7 times higher than that of people living in Tokyo. The main tourist and proposed torch routes had radiation exposure of 24.6 and 60.6 times higher, respectively, than in Tokyo.

our results showed that the highest radioactivity level was at the proposed torch route, which is located to the northeast of the plant.

Olympic officials should consider using the results of this project to decide whether the radioactivity level at the proposed torch route and the Olympic venues are within acceptable level.

Measuring Radioactivity in Soil and Dust Samples from Japan   Fukushima IQP Final Report. An Interactive Qualifying Project Report Submitted to the Faculty of the Worcester Polytechnic Instituteby Thang Pham Steven Franca Son Nguyen


A radioactivity map of Cesium-137, a radioactive material emitted from the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant, was created by examining 30 soil and dust samples originating from Japan. A Sodium Iodide (NaI) detector measured gamma rays emitted from the samples. Qualitative evaluation of human exposure to radio-cesium in five sets of locations in Japan shows the radioactivity of tested samples. The Fukushima section of one of the Olympic proposed torch route has a 60 times higher activity of Cesium-137 than the activity of the samples from Tokyo.


Executive Summary


On March 11th, 2011, a magnitude 9.0 earthquake hit the Fukushima Prefecture of Japan (AESJ, 2015, p.19). This resulted in major structural damage to the surrounding area. Following the earthquake, a 13-meter tsunami hit the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant and disabled the backup the diesel backup power generator and the cooling water pumps needed to keep the Power Plant running in the event of a disaster. Since power restoration was unsuccessful and there was major structural damage caused to the Units by the tsunami, there were high concentrations of nuclear particles released into the air.

The amount of radioactive materials emitted from the Power Plant raised health and environmental concerns to the people living in the areas around the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant. In fact, several studies conducted after the accident determined the activity of radioactive isotopes in the environments. These studies around Fukushima provided excellent understanding of the activity of radioactive isotopes in the environment and the health effects on humans.

 With the upcoming XXXII Olympiad in 2020 hosted by Japan, it is necessary to look into the radioactivity of Olympic venues as well as tourist attractions in the host cities. Previous studies pose a major gap because they focused on regions that are closer to the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, where the highest concentration of radioactive fallout is located. On the other hand, the radioactivity in other locations in Japan is relatively less studied. Since thousands of athletes and millions of visitors are travelling to Japan for the Olympics, there has been widespread concern from the international community about radiation exposure. Therefore, it is important to investigate the extent of radioactive fallout from the Fukushima Dai-ichi incident.

Project goals and Objectives

The goals of the project were to measure the radioactivity of Cesium-137 in soil and dust samples from Japan and to generate a map that illustrates the activity of Cesium-137 in five locations in Japan. Continue reading

May 12, 2018 Posted by | General News | 2 Comments

A journey to the heart of the anti-nuclear resistance in Australia: Radioactive Exposure Tour 2018

 NUCLEAR  MONITOR  – A PUBLICATION OF WORLD INFORMATION SERVICE ON ENERGY (WISE)   AND THE NUCLEAR INFORMATION & RESOURCE SERVICE (NIRS  Author: Ray Acheson ‒ Director, Reaching Critical Will, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom)   NM859.4719, May 2018 

Looking at a map of South Australia’s nuclear landscape, the land is scarred. Uranium mines and weapon test sites, coupled with indications of where the government is currently proposing to site nuclear waste dumps, leave their marks across the desert. But amidst the devastation these poisonous activities have left on the land and its people, there is fierce resistance and boundless hope.

Friends of the Earth Australia has been running Radioactive Exposure Tours for the past thirty years.Designed to bring people from around Australia to meet local activists at various nuclear sites, the Rad Tour provides a unique opportunity to learn about the land, the people, and the nuclear industry in the most up-front and personal way.

This year’s tour featured visits to uranium mines, bomb test legacy sites, and proposed radioactive waste dumps on Arabunna, Adnyamathanha, and Kokatha land in South Australia, and introduced urban-based activists to those directly confronting the nuclear industry out in country. It brought together about 30 people including campaigners from the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons and Reaching Critical Will, environmental activists with Friends of the Earth Australia and other organisations, and interested students and others looking to learn about the land, the people, and the industries operating out in the desert.

The journey of ten days takes us to many places and introduces us to many people, but can be loosely grouped into three tragic themes: bombing, mining, and dumping.  Each of these aspects of the nuclear chain is stained with racism, militarism, and capitalism. Each represents a piece of a dirty, dangerous, but ultimately dying nuclear industry. And each has been and continues to be met with fierce resistance from local communities, including Traditional Owners of the land.

Testing the bomb   The first two days of the trip are spent driving from  Melbourne to Adelaide to Port Augusta. We pick up activists along the way, before finally heading out to the desert. Our first big stop on the Tour is a confrontation  with the atomic bomb. Continue reading

May 12, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

‘Blatantly discriminatory’: changes to remote work-for-dole scheme criticised

Mostly Indigenous remote jobseekers still need to work more than 
double hours of non-remote jobseekers for same income’

‘An overhaul of the remote work-for-the-dole scheme announced in the federal budget
has been criticised for maintaining racist and discriminatory requirements 
on its majority Indigenous participants. …

Adrianne Walters, a senior lawyer at the Human Rights Law Centre, said
it was “mind-boggling” that the difference in requirements remained,
albeit slightly modified.

‘“Equal pay for equal work is a core tenet of Australian society.
The federal government must eliminate the blatantly discriminatory requirement,
which sees people in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
forced to work more hours for the same basic Centrelink payment as people in cities,”
Walters said. … ‘

Helen Davidson & Christopher Knaus:

May 12, 2018 Posted by | aboriginal issues, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL | Leave a comment