Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Federal election candidates for Grey express their views on nuclear waste dump plan

Battle lines drawn in radioactive waste debate,  Transcontinental, Amy Green, 1 May 19

Radioactive waste plans have been a topic of contention in Grey for three years so it’s no surprise federal candidates were asked to clarify their views at an election forum at Central Oval on Wednesday.

Battle lines were drawn as current Member for Grey Rowan Ramsey continued with his support to locate a National Radioactive Waste Management Facility at sites in the Flinders Ranges……..

Centre Alliance candidate Andrea Broadfoot rejected plans for the facility to be placed at either of the current proposed sites, a decision welcomed by the Adnyamathanha Traditional Lands Association.

“It is Australia’s responsibility to take care of its own waste,” Ms Broadfoot said.

“We are calling for there to be broad community support … but we haven’t seen a definition of broad community support.

“Barndioota and Kimba are not the places and we need to go back to the drawing board.”

Candidate for Labor Karin Bolton and candidate for United Australia Party Alexander Warren echoed Ms Broadfoot’s sentiments.

Australia’s radioactive waste is currently stored at a purpose-built ‘Interim Waste Store’ at Lucas Heights in new South Wales and has been since 2015.

Nuclear Free Campaigner Dave Sweeney rejected claims by Mr Ramsey that the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) will no longer licence this facility unless there are plans to relocate the waste by 2022.

“ARPANSA have licensed this facility through to 2055, it requires periodic updates about the status of the government project, but its license is in no way in doubt and for Rowan Ramsey to suggest, state or imply that it is, is incorrect,” Mr Sweeney said.

“His motivation is his to clarify but that statement is incorrect and where it becomes a problem in the current situation is that it could further the pressure on people over saying yes or no to a national radioactive waste dump.

“The really important thing here from the view of the Australian Conservation Foundation is that nuclear medicine in Australia is secure with or without the proposed government facility.

“To create a situation where the person who is elected to represent the one electorate in Australia that is facing this challenge and this issue is putting out information which is demonstrably incorrect. It’s not helpful.”

The selection process for the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility will continue after the May 18 federal election.  https://www.transcontinental.com.au/story/6101887/battle-lines-drawn-in-radioactive-waste-debate/?fbclid=IwAR0Pbmh2mUWat1wuglHeuXjIumwnNGD9Alk-Tz_CciFYlmBprO5LfCHJuEk

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May 2, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

“Australia’s nuclear waste is a national issue and putting the burden on two semirural communities isn’t fair”

April 30, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

South Australian aborigines again face a nuclear threat – as Federal Government plans a nuclear waste dump

Trident celebrations ignore Aboriginal victims of British nuclear weapons testing, Green Left, Linda Pearson, April 26, 2019 Issue 1218, Scotland   New threat from nuclear waste dump

“………..Aboriginal communities in South Australia now fear that they will be forced to bear the risks of radioactive contamination again. The Australian government is currently considering three sites for the location of a national nuclear waste dump, two on Barngarla land, near Kimba, and one on Adnyamathanha land at Wallerberdina Station, near the Finders Ranges.

The dump will host nuclear material currently stored at different sites in Australia, plus waste from Britain pursuant to a 2012 agreement between the British and Scottish governments. The agreement relates to waste generated by the reprocessing of Australian nuclear fuel at Dounreay. However, that waste is to remain where it is and a substituted amount will be shipped from the Sellafield nuclear reprocessing and decommissioning site, located on the coast of the Irish Sea.

The views of traditional owners have been sidelined throughout the process for choosing the dump’s location and Adnyamathanha’s traditional owners say that federal government contractors have already damaged sacred sites. As a result, two separate human rights complaints are outstanding in Australian courts.

Campaigners have called on the British and Scottish governments to halt the shipment while there is a risk that it will end up dumped on Aboriginal land without the consent of the Traditional Owners. However, the British government said the shipment “will comply with all relevant international laws” and the eventual destination of the waste is “a matter for the Australian authorities”. The British Environment Agency has so far failed to respond to requests to halt the shipment of waste from Sellafield.

The Scottish government has also failed to act to stop the shipment, despite expert advice it commissioned, which states that the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and, ultimately, Scottish ministers could refuse to authorise the shipment on human rights grounds.

Britain’s plans to celebrate 50 years of at-sea nukes erases the experience of Indigenous people affected by nuclear weapons testing. Those experiences should be front and centre in any discussion about nuclear weapons, as ICAN recognised.

Instead of celebrating, we should be looking at ways to redress the past and prevent future harm. Britain should apologise for its nuclear weapons testing and pay adequate compensation to those affected. The shipment of nuclear waste from Sellafield should be stopped.

But there is only one way we can prevent more lives being destroyed by nuclear weapons and that is by eliminating them altogether. https://www.greenleft.org.au/content/trident-celebrations-ignore-aboriginal-victims-british-nuclear-weapons-testing

April 27, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Busting ANSTO’s deceptive pro nuclear propaganda to the Kimba and Hawker communities

Kazzi Jai     https://www.facebook.com/groups/941313402573199/ Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste In The Flinders Ranges  23 Apr 19, How many times do you have to explain this to people? In response to some of ANSTO’s propaganda directed at the rural communities targeted for nuclear waste dumping……

So you have a specific inventory of what’s in the drums do you? You must be very special then – because that is not what has yet been released to the public! You seem to assume it’s in your words “aprons and gloves” from handling radioactive objects. There is much more to it. Did they mention that it must be shielded to be handled safely? The steel drums themselves act as the shield for the Low Level Nuclear waste and must be monitored to ensure they remain intact. The proposed dump is for the PERMANENT DISPOSAL of the Low Level Nuclear Waste as an above ground dump, but covered with yet to be determined substance so that it qualifies as an “near-surface” disposal site…and must be monitored for several hundred years for safety.
No-one in their right mind would guarantee that there will not be some form of leakage during all of those hundreds of years! Steel drums…concrete….do not last forever….especially when it comes to radioactivity as well as other external factors.
And then there’s the above ground “Temporary” storage of the Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste which will be coming with it. We have been told that the proposed dump is not worth doing without the Intermediate Waste being “temporarily” stored there, from Lucas Heights – which is in fact double handling and NOT World’s Best Practise in any way shape or form! What is in the Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste shielded casks – Did they say? Did they say how long the Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste remains dangerous? Did they say how long the casks were guaranteed by the manufacturers?

Did they mention any hazards or risks? Any at all? 

IF it is so safe as they say – why was Sally’s Flat NSW not hounded to take this waste instead? Sally’s Flat is MUCH closer to Lucas Heights at 260kms – Lucas Heights is where over 90% of Australia’s nuclear waste is generated on site – and Sally’s Flat was deemed suitable as one of the six sites chosen by the Federal Government! Even Oman Ama in Qld is closer! Why transport it over 1500+kms into a prime export grain area or into the iconic world renowned Flinder’s Ranges in South Australia?

The answer is that once it is over the state border it becomes South Australia’s responsibility and liability and South Australia’s problem!
And to top it off – as the NATIONAL Nuclear Dump – not just ANSTO’s – the title of it should ring alarm bells – then all of the other states can effectively become “nuclear-free” at South Australia’s expense!

This is NOTHING to do with FEAR OF THE UNKNOWN or “green goo”. It is nothing to do with comparing it with other objects which frankly is pretty stupid because it is just a way of selling it and blurring lines of understanding! It is MUCH to do with SHAFTING nuclear waste from Lucas Heights, where it is currently safely stored and monitored, and is securely held. Lucas Heights in fact are the first to say “not in my backyard”!

Keep it all at Lucas Heights until the Intermediate Nuclear Waste can be PROPERLY dealt with! Then the Low Level Nuclear Waste can go in with that! In fact that was the intention of Lucas Heights and its enormous space all along – is that they would retain any waste they generated on site UNTIL they had found a suitable way of dealing with it once and for all and not for the next generations to have to come to deal with this man-made problem which they continue to generate! They had given themselves 80 – 100 years to find a solution. This current proposal is NOT a solution. It is simply burying the waste and abandoning it – a caveman’s solution to a 20th century problem!

South Australia is NOT the Nation’s Nuclear Dumping Ground!

NO means NO!     https://www.facebook.com/groups/941313402573199/

April 23, 2019 Posted by | South Australia, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Incompetent management of CSIRO’s nuclear waste – used by ARPANSA to promote South Australian Hawker waste dump plan?

This article looks like one of those softening up articles that ANSTO and ARPANSA like to put  out –  to persuade the Australian public that a radioactive waste dump is needed, in the beautiful Flinders Ranges.

It’s time that we all really woke up to the fact that the nuclear industry, its ignorant lobbyists and craven politicians, are incompetent simpletons regarding the global nuclear mess, and should not be trusted with their decisions that are aimed at furthering this toxic industry.

Rusted barrels of radioactive waste cost CSIRO $30 million  Steven Trask, Canberra Times, 7 Mar 17 

CSIRO faces a $30 million clean up bill after barrels of radioactive waste at a major facility were found to be “deteriorating rapidly” and possibly leaking.

An inspection found “significant rusting” on many of the 9,725 drums, which are understood to contain radioactive waste and other toxic chemicals.

CSIRO flagged a $29.7 million budget provision for “remediation works” at a remote location in its latest annual report.  Fairfax Media can reveal the work will take place at a CSIRO facility located on Department of Defence land near Woomera, South Australia.

The Woomera facility is currently one of Australia’s largest storage sites for low and intermediate-level radioactive waste.  A damning report of the Woomera facility was issued by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) after an inspection in April last year.

“Evidence was sighted that indicates the drums are now beginning to deteriorate rapidly,” read the report, seen by Fairfax Media.  “Significant rust on a number of the drums, deterioration of the plastic drum-liners and crushing of some stacked drums was observed.” Tests confirmed the presence of radioactive isotopes at one location and inspectors said there was a possibility the drums were leaking.

“Although unlikely, there is the possibility that the presence of deceased animals such as rodents and birds may indicate that some of the drums, which contain industrial chemicals, may be leaking into the environment.”

The mixture of water and concentrated radioactive material inside some of the drums also had the potential to produce explosive hydrogen gas, inspectors found.

They also noted CSIRO had little knowledge of what was inside many of the barrels, some of which are believed to date back more than 50 years.

“Without full knowledge [of] the contents of the drums, risks cannot be fully identified and risk controls cannot be appropriately implements to protect people and the environment,” inspectors noted in the report.

Many of the drums are understood to contain contaminated soil generated by government research into radioactive ores at Melbourne’s Fishermans Bend throughout the 1940s and 1950s.

The toxic soil was discovered by the Department of Defence in 1989, who sent it to Sydney’s Lucas Heights facility before it was palmed off to Woomera in 1994.

An ARPANSA spokeswoman said the $29.7 million estimate would cover the characterisation, handling, re-packaging and storage of the toxic material.

“As a result of an ARPANSA inspection in 2016, it was recognised that additional work was required to scientifically characterise some of the contents of the legacy materials more accurately,” she said.

“The work that needs to be undertaken is significant.”

A spokesman for CSIRO said the first phase of the three-year clean up would begin next month.

“CSIRO currently has a radioactive waste store located on defence land at Woomera, South Australia. The store currently has 9,725 drums of long-lived waste,” he said…..

The country’s other major radioactive waste storage facility at Lucas Heights, Sydney, is rapidly approaching full capacity. Coupled with issues at the CSIRO site, the revelations highlighted the urgent need for a national radioactive waste storage solution, experts said.. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/rusted-barrels-of-radioactive-waste-cost-csiro-30-million-20170307-gusb6v.html

April 5, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Where do candidates stand on nuclear waste dumping? Friends of the Earth are finding out

Sounding out candidates on nuclear   https://www.whyallanewsonline.com.au/story/5991908/sounding-out-candidates-on-nuclear/?fbclid=IwAR3jlaHvuyECA2gwYQCZOGo6ysCmFwSKSGtyFUA8hD4IEex8CKJg6lK3GkQ, Louis Mayfield  3Apr19

April 4, 2019 Posted by | election 2019, Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Australian Mining touts Honeymoon uranium mine, but only IF URANIUM PRICE IMPROVES

They headed the article “Boss discovers ‘major breakthrough‘ for Honeymoon uranium expansion ” and went on to detail how the Honeymoon uranium mine project restart in South Australia will ramp up production.   But even  in its enthusiasm, , Australian mining gave a hint about the low prospects for the uranium industry. It will all happen –  “ assuming a favourable global uranium price for shareholders is achieved”    https://www.australianmining.com.au/news/boss-resources-discovers-major-breakthrough-for-honeymoon-expansion/

April 4, 2019 Posted by | business, South Australia, uranium | Leave a comment

Nuclear waste dump proposal divides rural communities in South Australia

Why is this writer accepting the nuclear lobby line that ibtermediate level wastes would be stored at Kimba or wherever for only “a few decades”   ?

Does she not know that there is no plan for final disposal of the wastes, and that they are most likely to be stuck at Kimba or wherever for hundreds of years?

 

Will Australia finally get a national nuclear waste facility? ABC, 28 Mar 19, 7.30 , By Angelique Donnellan   For 40 years Australia has sought to centralise its nuclear waste, but the question of where to put it remains unanswered because of bitter division.

Key points:

  • The Federal Government wants to store the nation’s nuclear waste in South Australia
  • Three sites have been shortlisted, two in Kimba and one in Hawker
  • The proposal has divided both communities

……… The Howard government dropped its proposal after it lost a fight with the South Australian Labor government in the High Court……

n 2007, a property called Mukaty Station in the Northern Territory was put forward to host the nuclear waste facility.

The plan was abandoned, again because of legal action, this time by the area’s traditional owners.

Tightknit communities divided

The current proposal has three sites in regional South Australia shortlisted — two in Kimba, five hours north-west of Adelaide, and one in Hawker, near the Flinders Ranges.

Landholder Jeff Baldock has volunteered a portion of his property in Kimba for the proposed facility, which would store low-level nuclear waste for up to 400 years, and intermediate-level waste for a few decades before that is moved to another location.

“Kimba is no different to any other small rural community where we have a shrinking population,” Mr Baldock said.

“It’s just a good opportunity for us to find another industry which doesn’t rely on agriculture.

“I don’t seriously think there is any risk of this having an effect on our crops [or] livestock.”

But Kimba resident Barry Wakelin is not so sure. Despite being a federal Liberal MP when the Howard government pushed for a national nuclear waste facility in the early 2000s, Mr Wakelin now opposes one near his town.

And is it a waste facility or a dump? Even what it is called has caused a rift.

Local business owner and teacher Meagan Lienert said she expected it to be a well managed “high-class, world-class facility” and “very different to a dump”.

“What the hell are they talking about? Everyone knows what a nuclear dump is. It’s rubbish,” Mr Wakelin said.

The Adnyamathanha Traditional Lands Association is one group taking legal action.

They are the traditional owners of land around Hawker.

Regina McKenzie said her people had been unfairly excluded from a community vote on the dump and claimed preparatory work at the site had desecrated a sacred women’s area.

“I know they need a site, but not here. Don’t impact our sites, don’t impact our culture, don’t impact us,” Ms McKenzie said.

“I love my country and I don’t want to see a waste dump on it.”

The issue is further complicated because some members of the Adnyamathanha support the facility, including Regina’s brother, Malcolm McKenzie.

“I’m supporting this because our culture can co-exist with economic development,” Mr McKenzie said.

Adnyamathanha woman Angela Stuart backed the facility because she wanted more opportunities for young Aboriginal people.

“We need a change. I’m sick of seeing young people drinking and wasting their lives away on alcohol and drugs,” she said.

“There might be a chance out there even if one person gets a job.”

The Native Title holders around Kimba, the Barngarla people, are taking legal action.

It is unclear when the Federal Court will hand down its judgement in that case.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-03-28/will-australia-finally-get-a-national-nuclear-waste-facility/10903498

March 30, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Do we want another nuclear industry puppet in the South Australian federal seat of Grey?

There are 3 contenders for this electorate, for the coming Federal election.

ANDREA BROADFOOT for Centre Alliance “This election is for our grandchildren, and theirs. Energy security, reliability and affordability through renewable sources” 

Andrea stood for this seat in 2016, and came very close to winning it, moving it from a (safely ignored by government safe seat) – to marginal (1.9%), which has brought millions of dollars of Government investment into the regions.

ROWAN RAMSEY The current Liberal Federal Member of Parliament, Rowan Ramsey, is an enthusiastic mouthpiece for the nuclear industry. If you tap his name into the “Search” slot on this page, you will see his many efforts on behalf of the nuclear industry.

RICHARD CARMODY  – Independent .

Kazzi Jai  Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 17 Mar 19 writes: 

Richard Carmody originally from Cowell and now lives in Whyalla has tossed his hat into the ring as an Independent.

Purely ONLY so that people are informed of these candidates, here is his policy on Nuclear from his website – with an INTERESTING TWIST when it comes to his policy on Coal!!

Regardless, seems people are NOT HAPPY with Rowan Ramsey. I wonder why?….(rhetorical question of course!) – we must also be careful of EXACTLY what POLICIES these OTHER CONTENDERS PUT FORWARD!!!

“Nuclear Since I’ve worked at Roxby (a copper and uranium mine) and Beverley (a uranium leach operation) people wonder about whether I advocate for nuclear related things. I’m neutral on nuclear. I am not for it nor against it. I am concerned there is a really poor understanding of radioactivity, radiation and nuclear science amongst the public, thanks to many years of sensationalist media and documentaries, both for and against, with agendas to push. The first thing I’d like is for an education program for the public on radioactivity and nuclear science to be put out. Then after people are much better informed, then they can decide if they want nuclear energy or the waste dumps and once the people decide, then I’ll go along with what they want.”

And then the PENNY DROPS!! He is IN FAVOUR OF NUCLEAR POWER!!

“Coal
Coal’s effect on climate emissions is much higher than that for oil and gas, roughly double to triple, depending on how you look at it. So it would be unwise to have any new coal power. That said, it is sensible to maintain the existing coal fleet until we have sufficient renewables / storage or other types of low carbon energy(ie nuclear) to support at least 50% of our energy usage.”

The fact that he wrote on his home page: “I will donate the other half to small parties that are going in the right direction (Sustainable Australia, Real Democracy, Reason etc)”…should have been a bit of a give away…..

Just realised his policy on COAL involves the use of NUCLEAR!!!!! How the hell can you be “neutral on nuclear” when you then advocate “low carbon energy (ie NUCLEAR) to support at least 50% of our energy usage”?????????????

Noel Wauchope  not for it nor against it” means pro nuclear – as it means – just letting it happen. Let us not forget the lie about nuclear curing climate change is still a LIE. Carbon-14 is produced in coolant at boiling water reactors (BWRs) and pressurized water reactors (PWRs). It is typically released to the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide at BWRs, and methane at PWRs. EPRI | Product Abstract | Impact of Nuclear Power Plant Operations on Carbon-14 Generation, Chemical Forms, and Release”. www.epri.com.

Carbon emissions are released in lage amounts throughout the entire nuclear fuel chain – from uranium mining, milling, conversion, enrichment, fuel fabrication, through to radioactive trash management and eventual burial. AND all the transport involved in between these stages.. AND all the building of all the stages’ facilities, and eventual demolition thereof.

March 18, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Uranium tailings at Olympic Dam – radioactive for at least 10,000 years- must be SAFELY managed!

Initial Scoping – Olympic Dam Expansion Issues 22 Feb 2019 David Noonan B.Sc., M.Env.St., Independent Environment Campaigner“……….Radioactive Tailings Management

The 1982 Indenture places an onus on the SA Gov. to grant approvals on terms to facilitate mining.

Roxby Tailings Storage Facilities are to be covered and ‘disposed’ above-ground as final landforms.

Civil society must not accept continued downgrade of standards in Roxby uranium mine expansions.

A full comprehensive safety assessment to determine long term risks from radioactive tailings must be a core required part of this assessment AND apply the 1999 standards set at Ranger mine.

The most recent assessment of Radioactive Tailings Management at Roxby granted Federal and SA Gov. Approvals (Nov 2011) to vastly increase tailings production (from the now lapsed open pit mine proposal) prior to actually carrying out this type of safety study on the long term risks from tailings.

The 2011 Roxby Approvals downgraded the key 1999 standards applied to Ranger uranium mine.

Instead of Federal Gov. required final disposal of tailings (in to a pit) “in such a way to ensure that:

  1. i)The tailings are physically isolated from the environment for at least 10,000 years;
  2. ii) ii) Any contaminants arising from the tailings will not result in any detrimental environmental impact for at least 10,000 years;” Olympic Dam Condition 32 Mine Closure (Nov 2011) defers a Mine Closure Plan and only applies unstated environmental outcomes: “that will be achieved indefinitely post mine closure”, and:

“c. contain a comprehensive safety assessment to determine long term (from closure to in the order of 10,000) risk to the public and the environment from the Tailings Storage Facility and Rock Storage Facility.”

Requiring outcomes to “be achieved indefinitely” does recognise that tailings risks are perpetual.

However, rather than specific high standards of outcome set at Ranger for at least 10,000 years, this 2011 approval has unstated outcomes and only references 10,000 yrs as a period of modelling study.

 In April 2013 Condition 32 was amended to further defer the safety risk assessment, from “within two years of the date of the approval”, to: “prior to the construction of the Tailings Storage Facility”.

 A “No Uranium Recovery” alternative leaves all uranium & associated radioactive decay products in the tails. Roxby mine extracts approx. 2/3 of the uranium from the ore, with 1/3 left in the tailings.

In current mining practice, tailings retain some 90 per cent of the radioactivity in the ore (given the decay product radionuclides remain, thorium & radium ect). Deporting all uranium to the tails doesn’t affect the public interest requirement, in any case, to isolate tailings for over 10,000 years.

 Note: BHP “Tailings Facility Update” (19 Feb 2019) claims a review shows “no significant deficiencies” at Olympic Dam Tailings Storage Facilities and says: “BHP supports calls for greater transparency in tailings management disclosure”. The BHP “Dams and Tailings Management” page cites “establishment of independent Tailings Stewardship Boards to undertake reviews”, and says: “A trial of the stewardship program has been completed at our Olympic Dam asset in SA”. https://nuclear.foe.org.au/wp-content/uploads/Noonan-Olympic-Dam-Expansion-2019.pdf

March 9, 2019 Posted by | politics, South Australia, uranium | Leave a comment

BHP wants the South Australian government to further weaken standards at Olympic Dam uranium mine

Initial Scoping – Olympic Dam Expansion Issues 22 Feb 2019 David Noonan B.Sc., M.Env.St., Independent Environment Campaigner “………   Mine Expansion Assessment – to drive down Standards?

BHP will shortly release a formal Application to the SA Gov., the SA State Planning Commission & Mines Minister will decide the level of assessment and reporting requirements, and the SA Gov. release “Guidelines” to the EIS. Public consultation & NGO input should occur on draft Guidelines.

 These Guidelines to the EIS are crucial to the credibility of the mine expansion assessment and this process is likely to be conducted before the Federal election and to be near binding thereafter.

There are a range of reasons for concern over this Roxby mine expansion project and assessment:

  • Public interest appraisal of this 2019 project needs to draw on analysis of BHP Roxby operations from 2005-06 and expansion proposals, process, decisions & conditions to 2013;
  • The outdated 1982 Indenture imposes extraordinary legal privileges and vested interests of the proponent, including over Aboriginal Heritage, that are intended to continue to apply;
  • A new SA Mining Act currently before Parliament to apply updated standards to all other mining projects in SA is not proposed to apply to SA’s largest mine: BHP Olympic Dam;
  • Roxby is also governed by the Mine Works and Inspection Act 1920 which solely provides the powers for Mine Inspectors to enter & inspect and to make Orders, however the Depart has sought to repeal this Act and roll these powers over Roxby into the proponents Indenture;
  • The SA Gov.’s Major Project Declaration has sought to impose serious limitations on this assessment, contrary to the standards, coverage, analysis and transparency that are required to inform good public interest decisions and conditions in this case

; · Successive SA Gov.’s have failed to secure a Rehabilitation Bond over the Olympic Dam mine. This process must now do so, requiring a new appraisal of liabilities over all mine operations: existing, enabling 200 000 tpa, and proposed expansion works and impacts; ;

  • Olympic Dam should be subject to a statutory mandated 100 per cent Bond applying the ‘most stringent conditions’ over estimated Rehabilitation Liabilities to ensure full costs in radioactive ore mining are secured in advance. See D Noonan submission (April 2017) to the Federal Inquiry on Rehabilitation of Mining (due to report 20 March
  • 2019): https://www.aph.gov.au/DocumentStore.ashx?id=3ecf8af6-a640-47d9-96c0-22c03df14728&subId=510447
  • Radioactive Tailings Storages at Roxby are designed and operated to leak liquid wastes, with inadequate lining to cut costs. The BHP open pit expansion proposal was also designed to leak. This 2019 expansion project is highly likely to be designed to leak and to cut costs by failing to require physical isolation of tailings from the environment for at least 10 000 years;
  • This assessment should include a range of alternatives to the proponent’s vested interest preferences, including that the ‘No Uranium Recovery’ option to only trade in copper and other non-radioactive products should be assessed across all Roxby operations;
  • The SA Gov. has a significant conflict of interest in this case and the ‘one stop shop’ Bilateral Assessment Agreement Clause 8.1, c (ii) seeks to constrain the coverage of Conditions applied by the Federal Minister. In practice, this Federal Liberal Gov. failed to impose Conditions on Radioactive Tailings Management in granting uranium mine Approvals in WA;
  • The next Federal Gov. must apply the ‘most stringent conditions’ on all uranium mining operations & reject ‘clearly unacceptable impacts’ on MNES under EPBC including on the fragile Mound Springs, as the State of South Australia can-not be relied upon to do so…….  https://nuclear.foe.org.au/wp-content/uploads/Noonan-Olympic-Dam-Expansion-2019.pdf

March 9, 2019 Posted by | politics, South Australia, uranium | Leave a comment

BHP’s grand plans for Olympic Dam uranium mine, using old legislation for open slather on water, Aboriginal rights, environment

Initial Scoping – Olympic Dam Expansion Issues 22 Feb 2019 David Noonan B.Sc., M.Env.St., Independent Environment Campaigner The BHP Roxby ‘Major Project’ Copper & Uranium Mining Proposal: ‘Olympic Dreams: Major step for $3 billion, 1800-job North mine expansion’ (15 Feb, p.1 promo The Advertiser) as SA Gov. grant’s “Major Project” status to assess BHP’s latest expansion plan, to:

  • Increase copper production from 200,000 tonnes per annum to 350 000 tpa, with an increase in ‘associated products’ – uranium oxide: from 4 000 to approx. 6 000 tpa;
  •   Use the outdated 1982 Roxby Downs Indenture Ratification Act to control this EIS assessment under the Mining Minister, with the Indenture over-riding other SA legislation and subjecting Aboriginal Heritage to a constrained version of a 1979 Act across BHP Olympic Dam operations in the Stuart Shelf Area (covering 1 per cent of SA) – rather than the contemporary standards, process and protections in the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1988;
  • Use a since replaced 1993 Development Act and “Major Project” status Sec. 46 (1) that excludes Appeals regarding the Environment Impact Statement (EIS) process and outcomes;
  • Use a ‘one stop shop’ Bilateral Assessment Agreement leaving the SA Gov. to conduct the assessment, including on Matters of National Environmental Significance (MNES)under the Commonwealth Environment Protection legislation (EPBC Act 1999), on nuclear actions and on the fragile Mound Springs Endangered Ecological Community – reliant on GAB waters;
  • Use the SA Gov. Declaration to “Exclude” existing mining and “enabling activities” up to 200 000 tpa Cu & associated products and resultant impacts from this EIS assessment, “such as: waste treatment, storage and disposal, including but not limited to, Tailings Storage Facility 6, Evaporation Pond 6, additional cells for the contaminated waste disposal facility, and development of a low-level radioactive waste storage facility”;
  • And to increase extraction of Great Artesian Basin fossil water “up to total maximum 50 million litres a day annual average” (above the volumes last assessed in 1997 and set at a max of 42 Ml/day) and give BHP rights to take GAB water – potentially up to 2070, with “any augmented or new water supply pipeline from the GAB along with any other wellfield”;…… ……. . https://nuclear.foe.org.au/wp-content/uploads/Noonan-Olympic-Dam-Expansion-2019.pdf

March 9, 2019 Posted by | Olympic Dam, politics, South Australia, uranium | Leave a comment

Paying a small tribute to Fr Denis Edwards RIP (March 5th) and his love of Earth and All connected

I am opposed to an international waste dump in SA, because I believe we are called by God to love and to respect this land as a gift, and to protect its integrity for future generations. As Pope Francis has insisted, “intergenerational solidarity is not an option, but a basic question of justice.” He insists on the priority and fundamental role of indigenous peoples in all such decisions about the land: “For them land is not a commodity but rather a gift from God and from their ancestors who rest there, a sacred space with which they need to interact if they are to maintain their identity and values”  (Laudato Si’, 146).”

Professor Denis Edwards Theology, Australian Catholic University, Priest of the Archdiocese of Adelaide

Paying a small local tribute to Denis and his memory- from  No Dump Alliance website. 
Thank you Denis
Michele Madigan
Acknowledging Ngarrindjeri Ruwe

March 9, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, religion and ethics, South Australia | Leave a comment

Friends of the Earth congratulates “The Advertiser” on its coverage of the safety dangers of Kimba nuclear waste dump plan

Jim Green shared a link. Nuclear Fuel Cycle Watch South Australia  Unpublished letter to The Advertiser  … Congratulations to The Advertiser for exposing the terrorist risks associated with Canberra’s plan to establish a national nuclear waste dump in SA. The government’s claim that the dump would pose “no security or safety risk to the community” is contradicted by the plan to station 14 security and safeguards officers at the site.

The nuclear dump would be subject to aircraft strikes and intrusions. It would also be a target for terrorists removing drums to make a radioactive “dirty bomb” ‒ risks that have previously been flagged by nuclear engineers Alan Parkinson and John Large:

”If terrorists can raid a nuclear waste repository or store and steal radioactive material,” Mr Parkinson said, “they can easily spread it by conventional explosives.”

Nuclear terrorist hazards also apply to nuclear waste transportation. In 2006, a reporter succeeded in planting a fake bomb on a train carrying nuclear waste in north-west London.
A NSW Parliamentary Inquiry found there “is no doubt that the transportation of radioactive waste increases the risk of accident or incident – including some form of terrorist intervention”.
Premier Steven Marshall did himself proud by standing up against the dangerous plan to turn SA into the world’s nuclear waste dump. Will the Premier now stand up to Canberra and oppose the plan to turn SA into the nation’s nuclear waste dump?
Jim Green, Friends of the Earth  https://www.facebook.com/groups/1021186047913052/

February 28, 2019 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, media, South Australia | Leave a comment

Olympic Dam Major Development Declaration

Olympic Dam Major Development Declaration, Friends of the Earth 28 Feb 19.  The South Australian Minister for Planning has declared that a proposal by BHP Ltd to expand the operations of the Olympic Dam copper and uranium mine, located 550 km NNW of Adelaide, shall constitute a Major Development under section 46 of the Development Act 1993.

The proposal covers the expansion of mining and processing activities at Olympic Dam, including an additional take of water from the Great Artesian Basin. It allows for an increase in copper production from 200,000 tpa Cu and associated products to up to 350,000 tpa Cu and associated products, as well as new and/or expanded facilities to support the development.

The declaration of a Major Development takes the project outside the bounds of the usual development assessment process.  The type of assessment and reporting required for this project has yet to be decided by the State Planning Commission and Minister for Energy and Mining.  That decision will determine the degree of public consultation on offer, which this eBulletin will endeavor to report as soon as possible.

February 28, 2019 Posted by | South Australia, uranium | Leave a comment