Australian news, and some related international items

A genuine Environmental Impact Statement must thoroughly cover the plan for National Radioactive Waste Dump, including transport issues, and the alternative option

David Noonan input to: “Referral: EPBC 2021/9128 – National Radioactive Waste Management Facility NRWMF, SA” 15 Mar 22,

As a significant “nuclear action” under the EPBC Act this NRWMF Referral is a “Controlled Action” AND requires a full Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) at the highest level of public assessment.

In a nuclear action the whole environment” is the “Matter of National Environmental Significance” protected under the EPBC Act. An EIS is warranted to cover the scope of this protected matter.

Minister Sussan Ley has now to decide the level of assessment that is applied to this Referral.

The EPBC Comment Form is inadequate. Its role is to properly inform the public. However, it only asks ‘Do you consider this Referral is a Controlled Action’, rather than also asking for input and reasons on the consequent required level of public impact assessment.

ARWA are the ‘proponent’ in this NRWMF Referral, as a non-independent badged office of the Industry Department. The Minister must not make a decision to approve and allow the NRWMF to proceed on the inadequate limited basis of non-independent input by the proponent.

A public impact assessment must be carried out under the EPBC Act. The proponent ARWA pointing to a separate ARPANSA Licensing process, as an impact assessment under other legislation, can-not ‘replace’ the need for a required EPBC Act EIS. The ARPANS Act does not protect nor assess ‘the whole of environment’ protected matter involved here under the EPBC Act.

As to Reasons, my submission to Minister Pitt on NRWMF Siting (Oct 2021).

ARWA falsely claim there is no Alternative to the proposed NRWMF action.

Why impose indefinite storage of ANSTO nuclear waste onto SA when its already in safe and secure Extended Storage at Lucas Heights?”(August 2021)

The NRWMF is two dumps in one. Proposed transport to and indefinite above ground storage at Kimba in SA of ANSTO Reprocessed Nuclear Fuel Wastes and Intermediate Level Wastes from Lucas Heights is untenable, unnecessary, unsafe and insecure, and has an obvious Alternative.

An effective Alternative is in-hand in the regulator ARPANSA’s formal Safety Contingency to retain these nuclear wastes at Lucas Heights “until the availability of a final disposal option”.

DAWE must require this Alternative is formally publicly assessed as part of the required EIS process.

It is inexplicable and unacceptable that ARWA have sought to exclude NRWMF inherent transport & shipping of ANSTO Reprocessed Nuclear Fuel Wastes to Kimba from this NRWMF Referral.

It is nonsensical and contrary to the public interest to seek approval for indefinite above ground storage of these highly hazardous nuclear wastes at Kimba in SA, while seeking to exclude core required transport & shipping of these wastes to the site from assessment

The impacted Whyalla community must not be excluded from any assessment of this Referral.


March 15, 2022 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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