Australian news, and some related international items

Nuclear waste dump ballot to go ahead in Kimba, South Australia

Robyn Wood Note the end with a quote from the Kimba pro nuker who will profit by selling his land. No quote from nuclear opponents. Have a read of the comments, most of them are opposed to the nuclear waste dump plan. The Barngarla people’s request for an injunction to stop the Kimba vote has been denied. The Kimba ballot is happening now. The Flinders Ranges council has agreed to do a risk assessment, but Canavan is not going to wait for the results before doing the Flinders ballot in November.

Nuclear waste dump ballot to proceed in South Australia Tim Dornin – AAP, The Advertiser, September 28, 2019
A ballot among the Kimba community, on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula, will begin next week as the local council seeks to gauge support for the construction of a nuclear waste dump.

It plans to post out ballot papers on Thursday, asking locals if they back locating the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility at one of two nominated sites in the region.

The vote comes after the Federal Court on Friday rejected another bid by the Barngarla people to stop it going ahead, pending more court action next year.

The Barngarla, who possess rights over much of the region around Kimba, have argued the poll is unlawful because it excludes native title holders.

That view was rejected by the Federal Court judge in July, a decision now subject to appeal. 
On Friday, another judge rejected a bid for an immediate injunction blocking the vote ahead of the appeal being heard.

Two sites near Kimba have been short-listed as potential locations for a low-level radioactive waste storage facility, while a third is near the Flinders Ranges town of Hawker.

The federal government is yet to reveal its preferred location but said recently it was mindful of the need to reach a decision.

On Friday the government said as well as the Kimba ballot and one to be conducted in the Hawker region in November, business owners and residents within a five-kilometre radius of the three nominated sites would also be surveyed.

The Barngarla had claimed their exclusion from the Kimba ballot was based on their Aboriginality and would impair their human rights or fundamental freedoms as native title owners.

Rejecting that argument in July, Justice Richard White ruled the council’s actions did not contravene racial discrimination laws.

On Friday, Justice Craig Colvin rejected the Barngarla’s argument that its chances of winning on appeal were strong and said the basis for an immediate injunction had not been made out.

National Radioactive Waste Management Taskforce general manager Sam Chard said the decision confirmed the community ballots could proceed.

“What this means is that after more than two years of consultation, communities will have multiple ways in which they can have their say on the proposal,” Ms Chard said.

‘”Whether individuals are for or against the facility, we’re confident the communities at the centre of the process are well informed.”

The Kimba council said it intended pushing ahead with the ballot as there was “no legal impediment” to it going ahead.

“Council’s position has always been to facilitate the ballot on behalf of the minister for resources and northern Australia so our community could have its voice heard,” Mayor Dean Johnson said.

The council plans to post out the voting papers on October 3, with the ballot to close on November 7.

Support for the nuclear waste facility is thought to be mixed across the local community.

Jeff Baldock, who has nominated his Kimba farm as a possible site, is backing the project as a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to secure Kimba’s future”.

September 30, 2019 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump

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