Australian news, and some related international items

Australian Liberal National Coalition enthusiastic for nuclear power


Coalition MPs in drive for nuclear energy, THE AUSTRALIAN, 17 Feb 21, Nationals senators have drafted legislation allowing the Clean Energy Finance Corporation to invest in nuclear power as two-thirds of Coalition MPs backed lifting the ban on the controversial fuel source.

The block of five Nationals senators, led by Bridget McKenzie and Matt Canavan, will move an amendment to legislation establishing a $1bn arm at the green bank to allow it to invest in ­nuclear generators, high-energy, low-emissions (HELE), coal-fired power stations and carbon ­capture and storage technology.

The Nationals’ move comes as a survey of 71 Coalition backbenchers conducted by The Australian revealed that 48 were in favour of lifting the longstanding prohibition on nuclear power in the EPBC act.

Liberal MPs Andrew Laming, John Alexander and Gerard Rennick are among backbenchers who want Scott Morrison to take a repeal of the nuclear ban to the upcoming election ……

The new amendment proposed by the Nationals would go further than Mr Joyce’s push by ensuring the CEFC — established by the Gillard government in 2012 to invest in green energy initiatives — could help kick-start ­nuclear projects as well as new clean coal plants……..

Out of the 71 Coalition backbenchers surveyed by The Australian, only Queensland senator Paul Scarr was opposed to changing the nuclear prohibition enshrined in the EPBC Act, citing a lack of community support “at this stage”. A further 22 backbenchers were undecided or did not respond to questions.

Other supporters of lifting the ban on nuclear generation, including Trent Zimmerman, Ted O’Brien and Rowan Ramsey, believe the government should not move ahead with legalising the energy source while the proposal is bitterly opposed by Labor.

In-principle support for lifting the nuclear prohibition is prevalent by members in every faction of the Coalition, which has been divided over climate change ­action since Tony Abbott became prime minister in 2013.

City-based Liberal MPs ……. including Jason Falinski, Tim Wilson, Katie Allen, ­Andrew Bragg and Dave Sharma — argue that nuclear should be an option in a technology-­agnostic approach …..

The Prime Minister has signalled he will not move ahead with legalising nuclear energy unless there is bipartisan support with Labor. MPs told The Australian Mr Morrison was unlikely to pursue a policy change on the issue in this term of parliament. However, small modular nuclear reactors were included as a potential technology in the federal ­government’s technology investment roadmap discussion paper………..

Mr Tim Wilson attacked Labor and the Greens as nuclear science deniers. …….

Many government MPs acknowledge the power source is not currently competitive on price, but say investment decisions should be a matter for private companies and lifting the nuclear ban would encourage technological advancement..

Other Liberal MPs in favour of lifting the prohibition are: Warren Entsch, Russell Broadbent, James Stevens, Ian Goodenough, Rick Wilson, David Fawcett, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, Sarah Henderson, Hollie Hughes, James McGrath, Jim Molan, Julian Simmonds, Bert van Manen, Ben Small, Dean Smith, David Van, Terry Young and James Paterson.

Nationals MPs who want the energy source legalised include Anne Webster, Damian Drum, Perin Davey, Llew O’Brien, Sam McMahon, Susan McDonald and Ken O’Dowd.

Boothby MP Nicolle Flint has previously publicly backed nuclear power.

February 18, 2021 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: