Australian news, and some related international items

Name Withheld (No 91) – simplistic pro nuclear submission re nuclear waste dump plan

Name Withheld (Submission No  91) toSenate Standing Committees on Economics Re- Proposed National Radioactive Waste Management Facility I have spent all my 60 plus years schooling, socialising and volunteering in the community of the Kimba district. I have spent all my working life in agriculture starting as a farm employee both on “the family farm ” as well as on neighbours farms, before owning and managing the farm business along with my wife. I value the strength and functionality of our community and have a strong will to see this prosper into the future.

(a). The financial compensation offered to applicants for the acquisition of land under the Nominations of Land Guidelines
The financial compensation offered to applicants is reasonable I believe. If it’s 4 times market value I calculate it would equate to about 10 years of lost production, ie after 10 years the applicant would be financially worse off. This is hardly overly generous in my view. One hundred hectares of farming land in this district is not a very big percentage of a farm unit, so is not a very big loss of total agricultural area. Most farm units are 2,000 – 5,000 hectares in this area.
(b). How the need for ‘broad community support ‘ has played and will continue to play a part in the process including i. The definition of ‘broad community support ‘ and ii. How broad community support has been or will be determined for each process advancement stage. i. 
My view is that if the majority of community members eligible to vote on this subject are in favour, that is broad community support. 50 + 1 is a majority. I don’t see that going outside the immediate area for decision is relevant as the benefits of the project are primarily to the immediate community, and if it is not to go ahead the community outside ours will lose out on nothing.
Our local community members have had a lot information brought to them from outside agencies with both the positive and the negatives of this facility being built here so are probably much more informed than people outside the community.
ii. Public consultation began early (despite what some say) with the local MP Rowan Ramsey advertising through local press and a letter drop to the householder through the postal system, of a public meeting in Kimba on 29/04/2015 to discuss the idea of him nominating his family’s farm to host the National Radioactive Waste Facility. (Copy of letter drop/flyer attached). He was later advised that it would be a conflict of interest for him to be attached to a nomination for such site. Approximately 45 people attended this meeting and the resolve was that there was little concern to such proposal. I think there were 4 or 5 nominations submitted following this meeting. None of those strongly opposed now attended this meeting to express concern.
I understand there will be another poll soon to gauge people’s acceptance and I think the same community boundary should be used, ie we use the same electoral roll as last poll. As I stated previously, this community is the most informed to make this decision for our community.
 (c) how any need for Indigenous support has played and will continue to play a part in the process, including how Indigenous support has been or will be determined for each process advancement stage;
We don’t appear to have indigenous concerns as we don’t have any active groups in the area. Despite this I understand that the Department of Innovation Industry and Science have had consultation with this sector.
(d) whether and/or how the Government’s ‘community benefit program’ payments affect broad community and Indigenous community sentiment:
 The “community benefit program” has not made any payments to the community as yet, but both those for and against have put in applications to this fund which may suggest those against can see the economic benefits also.
(e). Whether wider EP or statewide community views should be taken into consideration and if so how this is occurring or should be occurring. This is a matter for our community to decide and not the wider community. We don’t get ourselves involved in other areas concerns and neither should we. Most concerns people have had have been quelled and I think a lot of the problem now is that outside activist groups have sensationised perseived issues about the project to make headlines.
(f). Any other related matters 
Our council have supported staying in the consultation process and enter into phase which has been vindicated by the community vote held during 2017, which was 57.4% in favour of keeping in the process. This can be extrapolated to show that well over 60% were not opposed when including those who did exercise their right to vote. This may well have increased now as more people learn more about the benefits that this facility can bring.
 A lot of the negative argument is based on comparing this proposed facility to that of nuclear bomb sites such as at Maralinga and the World War Two bombings in Japan or even the Tsunami that damaged the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan. This is quite absurd to compare such events with a waste facility.
The Kimba Community has benefited from some two years of enlightenment and education on the safety and operations of such a facility and I look forward to us having the opportunity to move to the next stage of this exciting development for Kimba’ future. It has the potential to add to our current declining population through the economic benefit gained from a considerable ” Community Benefit Fund” and the addition of a significant number of Commonwealth funded local employees and the infrastructure that will come with this project.

July 11, 2018 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump

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