Australian news, and some related international items

Australian government struggles to impose nuclear waste dump in small South Australian agricultural area

‘Need a resolution’: Government fights opposition to toxic waste dump plans, Brisbane Times, By Rob Harris, December 1, 2020 A likely Senate roadblock to establish a radioactive waste dump in regional South Australia could be used by the Morrison government as a trigger to go to an early election as it prepares to bring the issue to a vote in the coming days.

The contentious proposal would finally establish a low- and medium-level nuclear waste facility at Napandee, a farm on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula, after 40 years of public debate about the disposal of such materials………..

Kimba mayor Dean Johnson and community members met with Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese and Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Monday to stress the town wanted everything that came with the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility……..

The plan has been criticised by the traditional owners of the region, the Barngarla, who were not included in the vote because it was limited to those living in the Kimba Council area.

The group later challenged the ballot under the Racial Discrimination Act in the Federal Court but it was dismissed.

The Australian Conservation Foundation has also criticised the process, claiming it would lead to potentially dangerous waste management, including trucking radioactive waste from Lucas Heights in Sydney through regional communities and dumping it on South Australian farmland.

“This is actively opposed by many in the wider region, including the Barngarla Traditional Owners who have been consistently excluded from the consultation process,” veteran anti-nuclear campaigner Dave Sweeney said.

Labor will seek to amend the laws so that the minister responsible, Resources Minister Keith Pitt, can use existing powers to nominate any site under the current legislation. Labor says the changes would still give the local community access to a significant community fund on offer and would ensure the decision be subject to a judicial review………

A bill which is rejected twice by the Senate – with a period of at least three months between each attempt – hands the government the opportunity to dissolve both houses of parliament and head to an election ahead of schedule.

December 3, 2020 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump

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