Australian news, and some related international items

The Australian government’s Radioactive Waste Bill does not meet required IAEA standards

Peter Remta, 30 Jan 21,  National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment (Site Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill
2020  I understand that Minister Pitt has brought on the bill for debate in the Senate on Thursday 4 February 2021 as he has been threatening the opposing senators that if the bill fails to pass it will become a trigger for the federal government to call early election by means of a double dissolution.
He has also pointed out that a double dissolution would mean that most of the independent or cross bench senators would lose their seats While technically and constitutionally this course would be available to the government as a result of the failure to pass the bill it is highly unlikely that it would resort to follow it even if it believes that it would be successful in increasing its representation due to the present disarray within th parliamentary Labor Party.
It is quite obvious that if the government were to avail itself of a double dissolution by virtue of this legislation not being passed I suggest that it could become a most embarrassing and inarguable exercise for it causing it to probably lose seats in both houses
I understand from relatively reliable sources that internal polling by the parties in South Australia is suggesting that somewhere around 70% of the population is against the nuclear waste facility at Napandee or in fact elsewhere in the state. The polling also indicates that the sitting member for Grey Rowan Ramsey will most likely lose his seat due to his lack in popularity together with distrust over his conduct with regard to the nuclear waste facility proposals
With this in mind I share the view of others that the government will not use the failure to pass the legislation as a trigger for a double dissolution election particularly as it is not an appropriate or generally nationally known issue on which to base an election
What is more,  fighting any election on this issue would give rise to numerous information and arguments against the
establishment of the facility at Napandee which will only show up the inefficient and disingenuous conduct of the government and its agencies such as ANSTO and even ARPANSA.
Obviously on the present numbers the government could not rely on the passing of the legislation by a joint sitting of parliament prior to the double dissolution


Below is the email message I sent out yesterday which includes in red my suggested draft for an amendment to the Labor
Party’s proposed amendment to the bill  The effect of this draft is to require such strict compliance with the codes and standards prescribed by the International Atomic Energy Agency that would be possible for the government to continue with establishing the facility


However if the opposition and cross bench including the Greens Party continue to oppose the legislation then my draft amendment would be superfluous
Draft amendment to revised amendment proposed by Senator Pratt: National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment (Site  Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill 2020 (7) Schedule 3, page 19 (after line 23), after item 3, insert:
3A Section 4Insert:
Joint Convention means the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste  Management, done at Vienna on 5 September 1997, as amended and in force for Australia from  at any time and includes without limitation the Safety Standards established or adopted by the International Atomic Energy Agency which provide the fundamental principles,requirements and recommendations to ensure nuclear safety for the purposes of among other things giving full effect to the Joint Convention.

February 1, 2021 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics

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