Australian news, and some related international items

We shouldn’t be the world’s nuclear dump, says Councillor Lynton Vomow

We shouldn’t be the world’s nuclear dump, Adelaide Hills Herald News. By Councillor Lynton Vomow, Lobethal 23 Sep 16,  You may have recently had a say at one of the Nuclear Waste Dump forums being held around the state. My biggest concern, however, being the prevention of an ship radiationaccident at sea and the loss of highly radioactive nuclear waste into the ocean, was not  satisfactorily explained .

Indeed the attendant basically said that we could not guarantee against such a disastrous event, it could be impossible to retrieve every container of waste and modelling is showing it wouldn’t actually be that bad!  Fish and all creatures of the ocean for hundreds of miles around the lost radioactive waste material would be devastatingly affected.

Did you know that medium or high level (depending on whether it’s France or Australia describing it) nuclear rubbish was brought to Australia, in December just last year, in  a rust bucket that had failed three safety inspections in five years?

Can you imagine what could happen if we were to receive dozens of shipments? Can we be guaranteed the waste will make it here safely, every single time?

Some are saying that low level waste is non hazardous, so then why not store it near its source i.e Sydney, and save the fuel costs of transporting it?

Basically a low level waste dump would be coming here to soften us up for a high level dump.

There is a need to have safe repositories for the waste, somewhere, but it will have to be near its usage location.

Countries ought to be looking at phasing out nuclear power so that there is as little waste as possible.

How long does nuclear waste last anyway? Can you imagine two hundred years? Ten times that then takes us back to the birth of Christ. Ten times all of that now takes us back to just before the last ice age, 20,000 years ago.   Then ten times 20,000 years? 200,000 years. That’s when only about half of the atoms in high level nuclear waste will have decayed to less harmful atoms. It is going to be a long wait for this deadly waste to become harmless, to care for our generation’s nuclear waste.


Are we going to be beggars or choosers? We are not so desperate that we have to take the world’s most toxic waste and prevent it from damaging anything for hundreds of thousands of years.

South Australia continues to have huge potential for growing the renewable energy industry instead.

The risk to the world’s environment of transporting high level nuclear waste across the oceans to to the furthest point on the planet, ie, South Australia, just doesn’t make sense.

And people, (including of course the Adnyamathanha Indigenous people of the Flinders Ranges) do not want it.

September 24, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia, wastes | Leave a comment

80 % of ABC North and West listeners oppose South Australia’s nuclear waste import plan

text-NoNuclear waste storage proposal draws ire of SA regional community on the ground ABC North and West By Angela Smallacombe, 20 Sept 16,  Plans for a high-level nuclear waste dump being touted by the South Australian Government have found strong opposition at ground level, according to an unofficial ABC poll.

The ABC North and West breakfast program, based in Port Pirie, asked listeners whether they were for, against, or undecided regarding the State Government’s proposal to import nuclear waste from other countries and store it in South Australia.

Eighty per cent of respondents were against the nuclear plans, 15.29 per cent were for the plans, and 4.71 per cent were undecided.

Votes were taken via text messages and phone calls, with 85 responses to 10am, but the “no” responses continued for hours afterwards.

The results came from listeners in the regional area that holds nuclear sites Maralinga, Radium Hill, Roxby Downs and Beverly Uranium Mine.

Listeners were also in areas previously mooted for nuclear waste facilities at Kimba, Woomera and aproperty near Hawker that is still being considered for a federal project to house domestic nuclear waste……..

September 21, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

Aboriginal people will fight planned Vimy uranium mine, despite EPA’s approoval of it

Indigenous people living in the area have a bad history with uranium developments. It’s a few hundred kilometres from Cundalee, the mission where Spinifex people from the Great Victoria Desert were placed after being pushed off their traditional lands by the British government’s nuclear testing program in Maralinga, South Australia, in the 1950s and 60s

handsoffPilanguru people to fight on as uranium mine gets environmental approval
Traditional owners say the Indigenous community has not been adequately consulted about Vimy Resources’ planned Mulga Rock open-pit mine,
Guardian, , 15 Aug 16, Traditional owners have vowed to fight a proposed uranium mine at Mulga Rock, about 240km west of Kalgoorlie, Western Australia, which was given conditional environmental approval on Monday.

The Environmental Protection Authority of WA recommended the Barnett government approve construction of the open-pit mine and uranium processing plant, operated by Perth-based Vimy Resources Limited, after a three-month public environmental review. Continue reading

August 17, 2016 Posted by | aboriginal issues, Opposition to nuclear, uranium, Western Australia | Leave a comment

The anti nuclear lizard is biting back at Olympic Damn Uranium Mine

Lizards-revenge1Zombies, giant sea god join large anti-nuclear protest at Olympic Dam Erin Jones, Roxby Downs, The Advertiser, July 1, 2016

MORE than 100 anti-uranium protesters from across the nation dressed as zombies and marched to the “gates of hell” outside Olympic Dam on Friday. It marked the start of a three-day protest by the Desert Liberation Front outside the BHP mine at Roxby Downs, bringing with them a heavy police presence.

STAR Group officers, sniffer dogs, mounted police, dirt bike patrols, a helicopter and a drone were all visible at the mine site during the event’s first day.

About half of the 200 protesters, including children, walked 2km to the mine’s front gates chanting “leave it in the ground, Roxby’s going down”. Some protesters shook the gates, but vowed to keep the event peaceful.

Arabunna elder Kevin Buzzacott has also called on the police “to do right” by them and issued an open invitation to officers to attend their camp. “It’s always a peaceful protest even though others might say it’s not, but we always like to do the right thing,” Mr Buzzacott said.

“We got pulled up by the police and they questioned everyone like we’re terrorists, checking licenses and cars being defected. “So we would also like the other people to do the right thing and come and talk to us and have a cup of tea.”

Mr Buzzacott said the group only wanted to raise awareness on the dangers of uranium and called on BHP to close the mine within two years.

Police Assistant Commissioner Bronwyn Killmier said there had been no arrests on the event’s first day and people had protested peacefully. Ms Killmier said officers were not wearing weapons as protesters were acting peacefully and respectfully.  The event follows a similar protest in 2012 which lasted longer than a week and resulted in 18 people being arrested.

Among the colourful characters was a giant 2.5m Tongan sea god named Lumi. Its creator, Nick Wilson, took time off from his job as a puppeteer and travelled from Melbourne to give Lumi a first-hand look at a uranium site he said was poisoning his ocean. “Lumi is the Pacific Island god of ocean and death and he seemed too perfect not to bring,” Mr Wilson, 31, said.

Last night protesters were setting up a roadkill barbecue at their solar-powered camp, on Olympic Way, which included a communal kitchen, music stage and children’s activity tent.

The majority of events by the protesters have been kept under wraps, but marches to the gates are expected throughout the weekend.

The Advertiser understands truck deliveries to the mine were halted Thursday night and will resume Monday evening to minimise any disturbance caused by the protest. BHP Olympic Dam head of corporate affairs Simon Corrigan said they were working closely with police to ensure safe transport of mine workers to and from the site. “We have a great team of people at Olympic Dam who are focused on working safely every day,” Mr Corrigan said.

July 1, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

Dr Helen Caldicott – a prophet With Honour outside her own country


the Smithsonian has named Dr. Caldicott one of the most influential women of the 20th century.

(Now why isn’t Dr Caldicott being asked as a witness in the South Australian Nuclear Citizens jury?) 

#WomanCrushWednesday: Dr. Helen Caldicott by Honora Gibbons, WAND Intern, Arlington, MA Dr. Helen Caldicott holds a special place in our hearts and history at WAND as our founder. Over her long career, she has demonstrated tremendous passion, skill, and dedication for consistently raising and calling citizens to action on the pressing nuclear and environmental issues of our time.

Caldicott was born in Melbourne, Australia. She earned her medical degree from the University of Adelaide Medical School. Her anti-nuclear stance is rooted in her identity as a physician and as a mother. As Caldicott spoke publicly on the health hazards of radiation, she rose to prominence as an activist for nuclear disarmament.

In the 1970s, Dr. Caldicott moved to the United States, joining Boston’s Children’s Hospital and briefly teaching pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. In 1979, the Three Mile Island nuclear disaster occurred, the worst nuclear power accident in U.S. history. Following this, in 1980, Caldicott resigned from her medical career in order to dedicate herself fully to the prevention of nuclear warfare and dependency on nuclear power. From then on, she worked to call attention to the world’s growing reliance on nuclear power and the dangers of the nuclear arms race. Continue reading

July 1, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

The (anti-nuclear) Lizard dances in Adelaide

Lizards-revenge1Zombie dance protest against nuclear industry, in Adelaide’s Rundle Mall   By Claire Campbell Anti-nuclear campaigners dressed as “zombie mine workers” have taken their message to shoppers in Adelaide’s busy Rundle Mall.

Dancing to the song Radioactive by Imagine Dragons, they rallied against nuclear energy use in Australia and a planned expansion of the outback Olympic Dam uranium mine near Roxby Downs.

Protestor Izzy Brown said South Australia needed to reject proposals that it expand its role in the nuclear fuel cycle. “We’re trying to raise awareness about the dangers of radiation, especially as South Australia is facing an expansion of the nuclear industry,” she said.

“There’s a threat of a national and international waste dump, Roxby wants to expand its uranium mining as well. “So we wanted to get out on the streets of Adelaide. The flash mob is just one small piece of a very big artistic theatrical theme.”

The protest group, the Desert Liberation Front, has dubbed its latest campaign, The Lizard Bites Back. An earlier protest at Olympic Dam four years ago saw police and protesters clash as some broke through a perimeter fence of the mine.

June 29, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

No Dump Alliance – anti-nuclear advocacy group launched

logo No Dump Alliance

Advocacy group protests against high-level nuclear waste dump in SA, saying it poses great health, environment and financial risks May 16, 2016  Erin Jones The Advertiser

A NEW advocacy group will lobby against a high-level nuclear waste dump being built in SA.

The No Dump Alliance group launched on Monday and already has the support of several groups, including the Australian Nursing & Midwifery Federation, the Maritime Union of Australia and SA Aboriginal Congress.

The group formed after the Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission earlier this month recommended the state urgently pursue the opportunity of a nuclear dump.

The No Dump Alliance believes the proposal shows a lack of respect for traditional owners, who opposed the dump and said it could pose significant health, environment and financial risks.

Candice Champion is a Adnyamathanha woman from the Flinders Ranges who said a nuclear storage facility could pose many risks to her community.

“As a young Adnyamathanha woman my family will be affected by this nuclear dump, which is bringing about a lot of anxiety and mental health issues to my family and community,” Ms Champion said.

“These places are of quality and significance to me and people continue to discount the Adnyamathanha voice which is frustrating and disheartening.

“We want to be able to invest in our future generations and be able to pass something over that is important and pristine, not something posing any risks.”

SA Aboriginal Congress chairman Tauto Sansbury said the group must have a united front and it was not just an “Aboriginal fight” to protect the land.

“This will be a united front to protect SA and make sure it continues to grow from other opportunities, apart from being the international dumping ground,” Mr Sansbury said.

“I believe we’re going to win this because this is not just about an Aboriginal fight … it’s everyone’s fight.”

The State Government will use a jury of 350 randomly selected South Australians to make recommendations to it in November on whether to proceed with the plan for a nuclear waste dump.

The jury was part of a six-step process to unfold over the next seven months, culminating in a firm Government position being outlined to State Parliament.

Premier Jay Weatherill has previously stressed the project could not proceed without broad political and community support.

May 17, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

Federal and South Australian govts underestimating people’s opposition to nuclear waste importing?

Fight looms over SA nuclear dump 9 News, 9 May 16  Environmentalists are threatening the fight of a lifetime over a proposal for South Australia to host a high-level nuclear waste dump.

text don't nuclear waste Australia

The state’s nuclear fuel cycle royal commission has called in its final report for SA to store the world’s nuclear waste in exchange for billions of dollars in revenue.

Royal commissioner Kevin Scarce on Monday said it could take up to 10 years to lock in public support for the proposed facility.

 But he urged SA’s government to seize the opportunity as soon as possible to prevent potential competitors from getting in first…..

conservationists accused Mr Scarce of down-playing the risks of nuclear storage and threatened to ramp up their campaign against the dump.

“We’ll be increasing our profile, our presence and our concerns,” Australian Conservation Foundation spokesman Dave Sweeney told AAP. “It might include protests, it certainly will include boots on the ground. “This is a serious threat from a resourced and long-standing industry. We’re taking it very seriously.”

Premier Jay Weatherill said a nuclear dump would have “extraordinary” economic benefits but required broad community support, although this is unlikely to be sought through a referendum.

The government has promised to work with the state opposition and will outline its consultation process in coming days before deciding how to proceed by year’s end…..

May 10, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

South Australian local community rejects nuclear dump proposal

Hawker locals reject nuclear dump proposed for Wallerberdina station at packed public meeting, ABC News AM By Natalie Whiting, staff, 7 May 16  Angry locals from a small South Australian community earmarked to host the nation’s first nuclear waste dump fear the project is a foregone conclusion, despite Federal Government assurances to the contrary.

Key points:

  • Hawker locals fear Wallerberdina station nuclear dump proposal is “set in concrete”
  • Landholders and traditional owners express anger at public meeting
  • Local MP says many support the dump proposal

text don't nuclear waste AustraliaA fiery public meeting held in Hawker in the Flinders Ranges last night was the first chance for locals to express their concerns since nearby Wallerberdina station was announced as the Government’s preferred site.

The town has a population of about 300, and more than a third of that number packed into the local community hall.

Government representatives faced a barrage of questions from people opposing the dump, including traditional owners who fear important cultural sites will be put at risk, as well as other landholders. “I think we’re getting the wool pulled over our eyes, big time,” neighbouring property owner John Gill said. “I reckon it’s set in concrete now, and I could almost 90 per cent guarantee it’s going to go there.”

Local mayor Peter Slattery opened the meeting by telling those gathered it was “not a soapbox forum”, but emotions soon spilled over, with angry interjections from the floor.

“It’s a last link in the area where the footsteps of our ancestors were,” Adnyamathanha elder Tony Clarke said. “They walked this land, they lived in this land, they hunted in this land and they died in this land.”Adnyamathanha elder Enice Marsh held a sign protesting against nuclear waste as she addressed those gathered.

“The dreamtime that runs through [the area] is very strong. It’s alive and well,” she said. “That story belongs to my people and me.”

Strong local support for nuclear dump, MP says

The Wallerberdina cattle station near Barndioota is co-owned by former Liberal Party president Grant Ramsey,-Rowan-nuclearChapman and was last week singled out from a shortlist of six potential waste storage sites across the country.

“There is a lot of support in this community for this facility, which is why it’s gone through to the next round,” local federal Liberal MP Rowan Ramsey said……..

The department will set up an office in Hawker and is recruiting locals for a community committee, and also plans to conduct an independent Aboriginal heritage survey.

The community will receive $2 million from the Federal Government as compensation, regardless of whether the facility is built……

May 8, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

Scrapped radioactive waste sites supporting Flinders community campaign

29 Apr 16 Since November 13, six communities across Australia have been waking with a nuclear cloud overhead, after individual landholders in their region nominated sites to host the national radioactive waste facility.

This morning Minister Josh Frydenberg announced that only one area would be further pursued: Barndioota, in the iconic Flinders Ranges in South Australia.

Though relieved their regions have now been scrapped from the list, representatives from each of the other five sites have all reiterated support to their counterparts in the Flinders.

Statements from each of the communities are below.

BARNDIOOTA, Flinders Ranges, SA Jillian Marsh- Adnyamathanha Traditional Owner This morning we awoke to a sickening announcement from the Federal government of its intention to continue burdening our lands and our peoples with this toxic nuclear industry.  Our lives are as caretakers of the land, as neighbours to other leaseholders, as friends and family to the people who love this region.  Once more our communities are split, and our well-being is jeopardised by relentless money makers who can’t think past their own personal or business gains.

Successive Australian governments continue to operate under world’s worst practice in managing toxic nuclear waste, and sadly the Australian public is tested once more for its resilience.  Regrets from past Ministers and swapping sides on environmental issues haunt all sides of government, but Traditional Owners remain vigilant.

The onslaught from industry and government is blatant in its colonialism, but the Traditional Owners, the Adnyamathanha men women and children of this region who love their country will not be silent or be silenced.

We thank those who have and continue to support us. Together we are strong.

OMAN AMA, Qld  Susan Campbell and Mark Russell- Friends of Oman Ama.The Friends of Omanama stand shoulder to shoulder with our friends and colleagues in the community of Barndioota. This has been an appalling process and we are saddened that they will continue to suffer from its shortcomings.

We will be meeting next week to discuss how we can best provide moral and practical support to them in the next phase of this campaign.

HILL END, NSW The radioactive waste management process has been flawed from the start. From day one ordinary people have had their lives turned upside down. It’s hard to be excited to have been removed from off the list because we know our fellow proposed site of ‘Barndioota Station’ in Flinders Ranges and friends we have made there through this process have woken to the most devastating news this morning.  Their site to them is as precious as Hill End is to us.  We will continue to support them as best we can.  It’s important to note that all sites have supported each other through this process.

What we have learnt? That the Government doesn’t care about ordinary Australians who elect them and vote for them.

It’s not appropriate to hear about being a proposed site on the radio on the morning of 13 Nov 2015 and it’s not appropriate again to hear about our removal from off the list again via media this morning. It shows our fellow elected constituent John Cobb lacks the fortitude to treat his electorate with the respect we deserve.

I’d like to thank our community for giving us their support, especially all the councils within the Central West.  The Government has made it difficult to define what is a community but to know that your community is with you in good times and bad is what has made this achievable.

When we have had no alternative to fight as hard as we have, our friends have been what has gotten us through this. Community means everything they couldn’t break us and it goes to show that people power is all we have when our backs are to the wall.



KIMBA (Pinkawillinie and Cortlinye) , SA, Peter Woolford, Toni Scott and Kellie Hunt- No Radioactive Waste on Agricultural Land in Kimba or SA committee.

The No Radioactive Waste on Agricultural Land in Kimba or SA committee together with our members are extremely happy with today’s announcement removing Kimba from the final shortlist to host the nations radioactive waste.

We are pleased the government has acknowledged that there is not broad community support in our district. Eyre Peninsula is an export reliant region, and the decision this government has made to remove Kimba through from the next stage of this process ensures we will maintain our clean green reputation.

However we are disappointed and concerned that the nominated site at Barndioota has been selected for the final shortlist and we will continue to support their opposition wherever we can. This process has been flawed from the beginning and all sites were hopeful that Minister Frydenberg would acknowledge this and seek an alternative solution. Our hearts go out to our friends at the shortlisted site- we understand the uncertainty they are now facing.


HALE, NT Loyola Jones and family- Oak Valley  The LeRossignol and Kenny families would like to thank the wonderful people who helped us find our voice and supported us through this process and the Traditional Owners (our family) from Santa Teresa and Tjitjikala for the strong and united stand against this proposal.

We are thankful that all our collective hard work paid off and the Hale site is off the list. But we can’t forget that there is still one of the six sites under threat. My family acknowledge our connection and relationship with Regina McKenzie and the Adnyamathanha mob. They don’t stand alone.

Our hearts ache that they still have to fight this. We stand with them and will offer whatever support we can. We stand in solidarity.




April 29, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Opposition to nuclear, wastes | Leave a comment

NO TO NUCLEAR WASTE DUMP – say women and Labor voters

Women and Labor voters opposed to international nuclear waste dump in South Australia, poll finds Adelaide Now, March 21, 2016 PREMIER Jay Weatherill will need to win the support of women and his own Labor voters if the State Government decides to back the construction of an international nuclear waste storage facility in South Australia.

The results of a new opinion poll show almost 60 per cent of women and most Labor voters are opposed to a global nuclear waste facility being located in the state.

text don't nuclear waste Australia

The ReachTEL Poll of 1077 SA residents conducted on March 10 found that 37 per cent of voters supported of voters supported an international nuclear waste dump, 48.5 per cent were opposed and 14 per cent were undecided.

The poll was commissioned by left-wing think tank The Australia Institute, which will tomorrow release a report critical of the international nuclear waste proposal.

Australia Institute executive director Ben Oquist said South Australians were increasingly aware of the risks posed by the project, including the damage it could do to the state’s reputation.

“I think people are increasingly wise to the projects that are jobs-rich, versus those that are expensive, likely to involve a large upfront government subsidy and won’t produce long-term jobs,’’ Mr Oquist said.

Those industries that are jobs-intensive are potentially put at risk by South Australia’s brand being threatened by a global nuclear waste dump.’’

Almost 49 per cent of Liberal, 28 per cent of Labor, 12 per cent of Greens voters backed the proposal.

But 52 per cent of Labor, 38 per cent of Liberal and 71 per cent of Greens were opposed……

March 20, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

Sallys Flat: How “ordinary people” are fighting back against nuclear waste dumping

Text Power to peopleNuclear dump site journey continues “
By LOUISE EDDY March 9, 2016,  The past three months have seen three unlikely environmental advocates embark on a journey that has taken them all the way to Canberra and the halls of power. 

Sallys Flat sheep farmers Robyn and Geoff Rayner were joined by Turondale mum and student Jodie Carter in taking on the Federal Government after a Hill End property was shortlisted for a proposed national radioactive waste facility. All three say they could never have imagined how much their lives would change during the 120-day public consultation process which ends on Friday. 
They learned through a process of trial and error how to become environmental advocates. They sacrificed, they discovered strength they didn’t know they had and they made heartfelt connections with people all over Australia. For the past three months their day-to-day lives have been put on hold with at least five hours a day, seven days a week devoted to their cause.
And they know that once the Friday deadline passes, there will be no more chances to ensure Hill End is not further shortlisted. They intend to run the whole way to the finish line.
“I have learned that when you believe in something so passionately and love something so much, you’ll find the strength to do whatever it takes to protect that,” Mrs Rayner said. 
Their journey began on November 13 last year when the Federal Government announced a property at Sallys Flat (later amended to Hill End) had been included on a short list of voluntarily nominated sites to potentially host a new national nuclear waste facility.
It was the first most living in the area had heard about it.  Mrs Rayner said she and Geoff were on their way to a ram sale when a neighbour told them they had heard something about it on the news. 
The couple knew straight away the property named was right across the road from their home and sheep stud. 
They were torn. If they missed the sale it would put them behind 12 months on their breeding program. 
““First we went to Mr Toole’s office and were told it was a federal matter, then we went to Mr Cobb’s office and were given three glossy brochures.” – Robyn Rayner ” “To be honest the enormity of it hadn’t really sunk in. It was too much to take in, so we decided to keep going,” Mrs Rayner said.
“We were shocked. We didn’t even have an inkling this was coming.”
Two days later they sent emails to Federal Member for Calare John Cobb, State Member for Bathurst Paul Toole and Bathurst mayor Gary Rush expressing their horror. Cr Rush was the only one to respond.  “First we went to Mr Toole’s office and were told it was a federal matter, then we went to Mr Cobb’s office and were given three glossy brochures,” Mrs Rayner said.
“We were still hungry for information at that point. We gave our details and asked Mr Cobb to contact us, explaining we lived directly across the road.” Still, they say, there was no response.
Members of the Hill End community called a public meeting to give everyone a say about whether they were ‘for or against’ a nuclear waste facility being built in Hill End. By the end of that meeting Mrs Rayner was nominated as the community spokesperson.  “I was reluctant. I had no idea what that entailed. I’d never done debating or public speaking in my life,” Mrs Rayner said. “It was a bit daunting. I didn’t even know where to start.”

Continue reading

March 9, 2016 Posted by | New South Wales, Opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Communities fight Turnbull government nuclear waste dump plan

Aboriginal woman Regina Mackenzie said the proposed Barndioota site in the Flinders Ranges threatened important cultural heritage sites. “There was no consultation whatsoever … we just feel it’s an attack on our belief system,” she said.

Greens nuclear spokesman senator Scott Ludlam said communities were told the dump would not be built if locals largely objected. “There’s strong opposition in all six communities [and] the government needs to abandon this idea,” he said.

heartland.Nuclear waste dump: Sleepless nights, tears and stress as communities fight Turnbull government plan, SMH  March 1, 2016 –  Environment and immigration correspondent   When Peter Woolford’s son died in a motorbike accident 12 years ago, the rural community of Kimba united to help the farmer and his wife through their personal cataclysm.

But that was then. Now, old friends in the community no longer speak, and people on the streets of the South Australian town are afraid to talk about the issue that has driven a wedge between neighbours: a proposed nuclear waste dump.

Cortlinye, near Kimba, is one of six sites across Australia the federal government has shortlisted to host the nation’s first permanent nuclear dump for low-level and intermediate waste.

The others are at Sallys Flat near Hill End in NSW, Hale in the Northern Territory, Pinkawillinie and Barndioota in South Australia and Oman Ama in Queensland.

If sites are approved, landowners who volunteered their property would receive up to four times the value of their land, and the community would receive about $10 million for infrastructure or services.

But this fight is “not about money”, said Mr Woolford, who was in Canberra on Tuesday with waste dump opponents from the other five communities to voice their concern. They say Resources Minister Josh Frydenberg refused to meet them, however they met other senior officials. Continue reading

March 2, 2016 Posted by | Opposition to nuclear, South Australia, wastes | Leave a comment

Doctor travels 10,000km to speak at 6 sites shortlisted for radioactive trash dump

heartland-2Nuclear waste dump tour: Activists travel 10,000km to six shortlisted sites, meet community members, ABC News By Tom Maddocks  13 Feb 16 A doctor from Alice Springs has driven almost 10,000 kilometres to visit all six sites shortlisted for Australia’s first nuclear waste dump.

Hilary Tyler and fellow activist Meret MacDonald spent six weeks on the road, speaking to communities in the Northern Territory, South Australia, New South Wales and Queensland.

With a four-wheel drive and a basic camera, the pair documented their trip across the remote land where the Federal Government is planning on storing low-level and intermediate nuclear waste.

Both have been involved in the campaign against one of the proposed sites — a date farm south of Alice Springs.

Dr Tyler said they decided to do the “grand tour” because it was a national issue. “It was really interesting to talk to everybody because they’re worried about the same thing that people in Alice Springs are worried about,” Dr Tyler said.

“They’re worried about the really shonky process that the Government’s pursuing. People are worried everywhere about water. Australia is a dry country.” At Kimba, one of the three proposed sites in South Australia, dryland farmers said they were concerned about potential impacts on the agricultural industry.

“Through all this process it’s the wellbeing of our community, that’s the biggest concern at the moment,” farmer Peter Woolford said. “That has to be considered well in front of money.”

It was a similar feeling among residents at Oman Ama in southern Queensland, where some have been told the value of their land will plummet.”If those land values drop, the mortgage will be worth more than the land and that’s a tremendous worry to our community,” said local doctor Colin Owen, who runs an organic olive farm in nearby Inglewood.

A number of Oman Ama residents said there was a level of anxiety in the community……….

Another proposed site at the historic gold mining village of Hill End in New South Wales’ Central West wasruled out due to community opposition. Bruce Wilson, the head of resources in the Department of Industry, told a public meeting the Government had no intention of building a waste facility if there was no local support…….

February 15, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Strong opposition to Hill End nuclear waste plan- petition

Protest-No!sign-thisPetition calls to halt Hill End waste plans  By ELLE WATSON , The Weekly, Mudgee, NSW, 10 Feb 16 Campaigners against a proposed nuclear waste dump at Hill End have taken to the streets of Mudgee to gather support for a petition to be presented to parliament later this month.
No Central Waste Nuclear Dump chairwoman Robyn Rayner collected signatures on Monday afternoon and will return before her February 29 deadline.  Since a public meeting at Hill End less than two weeks ago she has collected 15 pages of signatures.
 “We can’t say no any more or any stronger than what we’ve already done and yet when they [government representatives] were asked what their next step was they said that they were going to do a phone survey or pay for an independent survey and then they were going to come back and visit the directly affected neighbours one on one,” Mrs Rayner said.
“How much more of our time are they going to waste? Because we’re all farmers and when you’re dealing with animals there’s always something you have to be doing especially this time of year.
“They say it’s a process but why are they continually wasting money. Ok if they can’t make a decision until after the 120 days why are they still going about what they are doing … when it is 100 per cent unanimous against it and not one person has come out in favour of it other than the landowner.”
 Mrs Rayner said all direct neighbours attended the January 30 meeting bar one and all gave a show of hands objecting to the proposal.  The one neighbour who did not attend the meeting due to business commitment sent an email confirming his objection.
 A spokesperson from the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science said “with 120 days set for a formal public consultation period, the department will continue to run its consultation with the Hill End and the other sites until the close of the consultation period on March 11”.
 “The department is sending information on the project to all sites in February, including to the Hill End, Mudgee and Bathurst communities and stands ready to answer any questions to ensure communities are fully informed.   “At the end of this initial consultation period an independent survey company will survey the views of the community and provide this input to the department.”
Mid-Western Regional Council, Bathurst and Lithgow City Councils have all opposed the proposal.
 At a meeting last week Mudgee Chamber of Commerce members were unanimous in their opposition to the facility.
Submissions on the project can still be made by sending an email to

February 12, 2016 Posted by | New South Wales, Opposition to nuclear | 2 Comments