Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Senator Pauline Hanson was scathing in condemning the government’s nuclear waste siting process

No-one has seen a list of the radioactive waste materials to be stored in the national radioactive waste facility,  opening the real possibility of mission creep over time. There is no safety case. The minister says it will be safe.  How would he know?

The proposed cost of this above-ground radioactive waste dump site is estimated to cost about a third of  a billion dollars, all of which will have been wasted because it’s a temporary solution. I am annoyed. The hard  decision, which is the permanent dump site, has been kicked down the road like a can instead of being picked up  and dealt with. 

Is the movement of radioactive waste minimised for public safety by keeping the dump site close to the site of  production? No. Large volumes of radioactive waste will be transported hundreds of kilometres by road into  South Australia, contrary to section 9 of South Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000.  Has the government resolved the conflict with section 8 of South Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility  (Prohibition) Act

Where is the Marshall government in South Australia on this issue? Its silence is deafening. The next state  election in South Australia is on 19 March 2022. Premier Marshall has said nothing and has not repealed South  Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000. I note that the 2021-22 budget provides South  Australia with $3.4 billion in new commitments, compared with $2 billion for Queensland and $377 million for  Tasmania. Has the federal government bought the Marshall state government? I will let the voters in South  Australia work that one out for themselves.

Is the proposed dump site near Kimba a geologically stable area? No.

Senator HANSON (Queensland—Leader of Pauline Hanson’s One Nation) Senate, 21 June 21, (18:51): I rise to speak to the  National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment (Site Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures)  Bill 2020. One Nation will never support the removal of judicial review from legislation. This position means One  Nation has and will continue to resist pressure from the government to legislate a site in Kimba in South Australia  for radioactive waste management. One Nation will always stand up for the freedoms past generations have  passed on to us. 

In the next 12 months there will be a general election to elect a new federal government. If Australians act like  sheep, voting for the two parties and their sidekicks who want to take away their judicial rights, they are going to  get wolves in government. If the two big parties had their way, a radioactive nuclear waste facility would now be  under construction on the Eyre Peninsula in the middle of prime cropping land in South Australia. Just four per  cent of the land in South Australia is suitable for wheat, barley and canola, but the government wants to use the  prime land to build a radioactive waste facility. Up until recently, Labor agreed to the removal of judicial review  in relation to site selection for a national radioactive waste storage facility. Now they champion judicial review? I  ask: what grubby deal has Labor done with government to get this bill through the Senate? No wonder voters are  leaving Labor and turning to One Nation. 

The government has ticked every wrong box to arrive at its decision to impose a national dump site for  radioactive waste on unwilling communities in South Australia.

The three sites mentioned in the amended bill are  all in South Australia. No-one seriously believes that the government is considering any site other than Napandee  near Kimba. They have already given this small community upwards of $6 million, with the promise of more.  There is no place on the map called Napandee in South Australia, but you can find the name ‘Napandee’ on a farm  sign. The site manager is living in the area and the government is considering tenders for engineering advice for  the site of Napandee.

The government knows it will face a challenge in the courts from the Barngarla people, who are the native title holders on the Eyre Peninsula. The Barngarla people carry the hopes of the Indigenous people of South Australia.  Aboriginal people in South Australia and other Australians carry the legacy of the nuclear testing done in the  1950s and 1960s in South Australia. If the government want to give Aboriginal people a voice, then they should  give them a voice on the site for a radioactive waste management facility. To date the government has sought to 

silence Aboriginal people on this most important issue, but the day of reckoning will come in the courts. The  government talks about reconciliation. In One Nation, we just do it. 

No-one has seen a list of the radioactive waste materials to be stored in the national radioactive waste facility,  opening the real possibility of mission creep over time. There is no safety case. The minister says it will be safe.  How would he know? Nothing is safe where humans are involved. The National Radioactive Waste Management  Amendment (Site Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill 2020 proposes to find a single  location to store low-level radioactive waste produced in the production of nuclear medicines and other products  and intermediate-level waste reactor core components that have undergone reprocessing overseas. 

The level of radioactivity in each of these waste categories at the rate at which they decay determines the  management, storage and disposal. In other words, we need to know what will be stored before decisions can be  made about where and how to store it. Low-level radioactive waste, like paper, plastics and scrap metal items  which have been used in hospitals and research institutions, are kept locally for six months and then disposed of  locally, which means no storage problems here. Intermediate-level radioactive waste needs to be stabilised before  being moved and then packaged in steel drums and stored in purpose built facilities which are located away from  population centres. 

The frequency, flow and volume of surface and ground waters is critical to the siting of any nuclear waste  storage facility, particularly on the Eyre Peninsula, where all the population relies on groundwater. The  government has not released the groundwater studies. Where are they? Is the radioactive waste to be stored  permanently underground? No. The legislation proposes a temporary above-ground site at Napandee, near Kimba,  with a permanent site to be found later. I will tell you when that will be, when all the members of this parliament  are dead. The proposed cost of this above-ground radioactive waste dump site is estimated to cost about a third of  a billion dollars, all of which will have been wasted because it’s a temporary solution. I am annoyed. The hard  decision, which is the permanent dump site, has been kicked down the road like a can instead of being picked up  and dealt with. 

Is the movement of radioactive waste minimised for public safety by keeping the dump site close to the site of  production? No. Large volumes of radioactive waste will be transported hundreds of kilometres by road into  South Australia, contrary to section 9 of South Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000.  Has the government resolved the conflict with section 8 of South Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility  (Prohibition) Act 2000, which expressly forbids the construction of a nuclear waste facility? No. The federal  government proposes that this bill override any state legislation regulating, hindering or preventing the  establishment of a national radioactive waste facility in South Australia. 

Where is the Marshall government in South Australia on this issue? Its silence is deafening. The next state  election in South Australia is on 19 March 2022. Premier Marshall has said nothing and has not repealed South  Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000. I note that the 2021-22 budget provides South  Australia with $3.4 billion in new commitments, compared with $2 billion for Queensland and $377 million for  Tasmania. Has the federal government bought the Marshall state government? I will let the voters in South  Australia work that one out for themselves.

Is the proposed dump site near Kimba a geologically stable area? No. The site at Napandee, near Kimba, is on a  geological fault zone in the Great Artesian Basin. Has consultation with South Australia been adequate? No. The  consultation process and the millions spent on bribing locals to support their plans is a stain on this government  and on the department of industry, innovation and science. I call on the government to invite the Auditor-General  to audit the funds spent at Kimba and Hawker in the Flinders Ranges. While they are investigating the millions  spent on bribing locals, they can investigate how taxpayers’ money was spent renovating a local hotel which was  then sold. It is such a tragedy, when 18 per cent of children live in households below the poverty line in rural and  regional South Australia. 

Is the movement of radioactive waste minimised for public safety by keeping the dump site close to the site of  production? No. Large volumes of radioactive waste will be transported hundreds of kilometres by road into  South Australia, contrary to section 9 of South Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000.  Has the government resolved the conflict with section 8 of South Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility  (Prohibition) Act 2000, which expressly forbids the construction of a nuclear waste facility? No. The federal  government proposes that this bill override any state legislation regulating, hindering or preventing the  establishment of a national radioactive waste facility in South Australia. 

Where is the Marshall government in South Australia on this issue? Its silence is deafening. The next state  election in South Australia is on 19 March 2022. Premier Marshall has said nothing and has not repealed South  Australia’s Nuclear Waste Storage Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000. I note that the 2021-22 budget provides South  Australia with $3.4 billion in new commitments, compared with $2 billion for Queensland and $377 million for  Tasmania. Has the federal government bought the Marshall state government? I will let the voters in South  Australia work that one out for themselves. 

Is the proposed dump site near Kimba a geologically stable area? No. The site at Napandee, near Kimba, is on a  geological fault zone in the Great Artesian Basin. Has consultation with South Australia been adequate? No. The  consultation process and the millions spent on bribing locals to support their plans is a stain on this government  and on the department of industry, innovation and science. I call on the government to invite the Auditor-General  to audit the funds spent at Kimba and Hawker in the Flinders Ranges. While they are investigating the millions  spent on bribing locals, they can investigate how taxpayers’ money was spent renovating a local hotel which was  then sold. It is such a tragedy, when 18 per cent of children live in households below the poverty line in rural and  regional South Australia. 

June 28, 2021 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics

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