Australian news, and some related international items

Resources Minister Matt Canavan changes his tune – now REJECTS nuclear power !

What a waste: Minister’s question for nuclear inquiry, Courier Mail, 21 June 19RESOURCES Minister Matt Canavan has shied away from backing an inquiry into nuclear power in Australia, as he warns a permanent home would need to be found for high-level waste first.

He said a facility to store low-level radioactive waste from medical facilities had not been agreed on, despite a 40-year search.

Some of his Queensland LNP colleagues, led by Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt and Senator James McGrath, are pushing for a two-year inquiry into nuclear power

Senator Canavan said he did not believe it stacked up financially and it could cost more to generate power than existing energy sources.

He said the British Government had recently underwritten a nuclear power station, guaranteeing a price of $140/megawatt hour, which is higher than the $100/megawatt hour price currently paid in Australia.

“I don’t think it’s the right choice right now for Australia, mainly from a financial and cost perspective,” Senator Canavan said.

“The Government’s focus has been on getting prices down in Australia.

“That’s why right now I don’t think the current technology of nuclear technology is a solution to that.”

Senator Canavan also warned that a facility for storing high-level radioactive waste would need to be found. “We have been trying for 40 years to find a long-term repository for radioactive waste that is produced at Lucas Heights (nuclear reactor in Sydney) and some legacy waste we have from other activities,” he said.

“If we can’t find a permanent home for low-level radioactive waste associated with nuclear medicines, we’ve got a pretty big challenge dealing with the high-level waste that would be produced by any energy facilities.”

But he said he welcomed his colleagues bringing forth significant policy issues, and would speak to them seeking further detail.

Senator McGrath and Mr Pitt said this week they would write to the Prime Minister seeking his support for an inquiry into nuclear power to go ahead, given it has been more than a decade since the previous investigation.

June 22, 2019 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics

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