Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Deceived’: France says it had assurances from Australia on day subs deal cancelled

Deceived’: France says it had assurances from Australia on day subs deal cancelled, ABC, By Jack Hawke and Nick Dole in London 22 Sept 21,

Australian officials had written to their French counterparts to say they were “satisfied” with how a $90 billion submarine deal was progressing on the same day it was announced the deal was being cancelled, France’s defence ministry has claimed.

Key points:

  • Australia has terminated a $90bn deal to buy 12 conventionally-powered submarines from France in a deal brokered in 2016
  • Instead it has teamed up in a new alliance with the UK and US, which will deliver nuclear-powered submarines
  • France’s defence ministry says it feels “cheated” and “blindsided” by Australia’s decision

Herve Grandjean, a spokesman for the defence ministry, also told the ABC the French feel cheated and blindsided by the announcement.

It is the latest in a barrage of criticism from France following Australia’s decision last Thursday to pull out of the deal for 12, French-built submarines in order to forge a new defence relationship — AUKUS — with the United Kingdom and the United States, which will see Australia gain a fleet of nuclear-powered submarines.

The fallout has also included France recalling its ambassadors to Australia and the US at the request of French President Emmanuel Macron.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he had tried to call Mr Macron on the evening before the announcement, but France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Canberra only informed Paris one hour before Mr Morrison joined a video link-up with British counterpart Boris Johnson and US President Joe Biden to announce the new deal. 

Mr Grandjean told the ABC on the same day AUKUS was announced, the French had been reassured by Australian officials the submarine program was continuing as planned.

“We received an official letter from the Australian ministry of defence, saying that they were satisfied with the advancement of the project and with the submarine’s performance, which meant that we could launch the next phase of development of these submarines,” he said.

“We were very surprised by the announcement, which was not at all in line with the official letter we had received.

“So, yes, we do consider there was duplicity. We do consider we have been deceived.”………

…………… Mr Grandjean said that, in August this year, there was a meeting with Foreign Minister Marise Payne and her French counterpart in which there was no indication the contract was in jeopardy.

He said it also appeared none of the Australian engineers or military personnel involved in the French submarine program – which was being headed up by French defence contractor Naval Group – had any idea about the policy shift.

………. He said the AUKUS deal would be “bad news” for Australians and that, instead of getting new French submarines in 2030, Australia would likely have to wait until 2040 for nuclear-powered ones.,,,………. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-09-22/french-defence-spokesman/100481322

September 23, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics international, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Nuclear submarine deal planned for 18 months – French ambassador says this is treasonous

Recalled French ambassador accuses Australia of ‘treason in the making’  https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/recalled-french-ambassador-accuses-australia-of-treason-in-the-making-20210918-p58ssg.html. By Anthony Galloway

 France’s recalled ambassador to Australia has likened Canberra’s actions to treason after the Morrison government dumped a $90 billion submarine contract with Paris and instead decided to build nuclear-powered submarines with the United States and Britain.

France on Saturday has taken the extraordinary step of recalling its ambassadors from Australia and the US, as the fallout grows from a new defence pact that has infuriated French President Emmanuel Macron.

Speaking to The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age hours before he was recalled, France’s ambassador to Australia, Jean-Pierre Thebault, did not rule out suspending talks to allow French troops greater access to Australian military bases after his nation was “stabbed in the back”.

Adding insult to the process… we have very reliable reports from the independent press, which I thank, about the fact that all this was in the making for 18 months. Which means we have been blind-sided intentionally for 18 months…. The crime was prepared for 18 months,” he said.

France’s recalled ambassador to Australia has likened Canberra’s actions to treason after the Morrison government dumped a $90 billion submarine contract with Paris and instead decided to build nuclear-powered submarines with the United States and Britain.

France on Saturday has taken the extraordinary step of recalling its ambassadors from Australia and the US, as the fallout grows from a new defence pact that has infuriated French President Emmanuel Macron.

Speaking to The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age hours before he was recalled, France’s ambassador to Australia, Jean-Pierre Thebault, did not rule out suspending talks to allow French troops greater access to Australian military bases after his nation was “stabbed in the back”.

“Adding insult to the process… we have very reliable reports from the independent press, which I thank, about the fact that all this was in the making for 18 months. Which means we have been blind-sided intentionally for 18 months…. The crime was prepared for 18 months,” he said.

He slammed Australia for allowing a meeting to go ahead between Mr Dutton and Foreign Minister Marise Payne late last month with their French counterparts where they spoke about enhancing defence ties between the two countries.

“It is us, through letters that were sent by the President [Macron] some months ago to the Prime Minister [Scott Morrison], who proposed to look at more ambitious and new ambitious cooperations,” Mr Thebault said……….. The extraordinary move follows the Morrison government’s decision to tear up a $90 billion contract to buy 12 French submarines in favour of a new nuclear-powered fleet using technology from the US and United Kingdom under a new partnership called AUKUS.


September 20, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics international, secrets and lies, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Secret nuclear submarine deal started in March

Like a scene from Le Carré’: how the nuclear submarine pact was No 10’s biggest secret
Only ten people in Britain knew about its plans to stand with Australia and the United States against Chinese aggression in the Indo-Pacific. This is how the deal was done
The Times UK 17 Sept 21,

When the First Sea Lord was invited to a meeting at the Australian high commission in March this year, he had no idea of the magnitude of what was about to unfold. Admiral Sir Tony Radakin — described by colleagues as a “doer” — was asked by Vice-Admiral Michael Noonan, the Australian Chief of Navy, whether the British and Americans could help their ally to build a new fleet of nuclear-powered submarines………..  (subscribers only)  https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/like-a-scene-from-le-carre-how-the-nuclear-submarine-pact-was-no10s-biggest-secret-dj7z5f8bh

September 18, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics international, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Scrutiny on possible fraud in the process of the government bribery grants for South Australian communities to accept a nuclear waste dump

Recently information has become available that has indicates a new path of attack against the planned nuclear waste dump in South Australia.

It is is being reported to the Federal Police Fraud Investigation Branch that several individuals made application for a
community grant fraudulently. These individuals participated in a conspiracy with a “resource agency” who
assisted in making application for the grant fraudulently on behalf of an “Aboriginal Corporation” that does not meet the requirements or criteria for the grant.

Grant approval was obtained successfully and was publicly announced. What this proves is that the entire process was rushed and the money grab that divided and separated local communities was able to be manipulated so easily that some unscrupulous people could illegally take advantage.

The federal police will have all the available evidence shortly (there is a lot) and the corporation and persons involved
in the fraudulent funding application will be held to account and prosecuted under federal law.    A win for transparency in the local area.

But it will be a bigger win for the overall fight because it would put the entire grant bribery process and purpose under scrutiny. Hopefully it will lead to very publicly broadcasted news stories following the progress of the investigation and prosecution proceedings.

September 2, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Morrison government moves to strengthen secrecy around energy ministers meetings

Details of key energy policy decisions could remain secret, as the Morrison government moves to protect National Cabinet deliberations from transparency laws. The post Morrison government moves to strengthen secrecy around energy ministers meetings appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Morrison government moves to strengthen secrecy around energy ministers meetings — RenewEconomy Michael Mazengarb 2 September 2021 The Morrison government has moved to strengthen the level of secrecy around the proceedings of National Cabinet – including the meetings of energy ministers – proposing new legislative amendments that will ensure the National Cabinet is exempt from a range of transparency measures, including freedom of information laws.

The move will extend to the ‘sub-committees’ of the National Cabinet, including the Energy National Cabinet Reform Committee chaired by federal energy minister Angus Taylor.

The new legislation, which will define the National Cabinet as a committee of the federal cabinet under a range of transparency laws, including the Freedom of Information Act, is designed to ensure the National Cabinet is protected from public disclosure obligations.

The legislation comes as a response to a landmark ruling of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal on a freedom of information request lodged by independent senator Rex Patrick, which ruled the National Cabinet was not covered by freedom of information exceptions, and documents relating to National Cabinet meetings should be disclosed publicly.

But the Morrison government has sought to effectively overturn this decision through the legislative amendments, ensuring the proceedings of National Cabinet, and its sub-committees, remain secret.

“Like the Commonwealth cabinet and its committees, all proceedings and documentation of the National Cabinet and its committees are confidential,” federal education minister Alan Tudge said when presenting the legislation.


In response, Patrick described prime minister Scott Morrison as a ‘sore loser’.

“Having acted outside and contrary to the law with regard to National Cabinet secrecy, the Prime Minister now wants to change the law,” Patrick said.

“He’s a sore loser who does not accept long-established conventions of Cabinet responsibility and democratic accountability. He hates scrutiny and is allergic to transparency.”

The creation of the Nation Cabinet came at the same time as the abolition of the COAG system, including the COAG Energy Council meeting of energy ministers. The change has allowed the Morrison government to take greater control of the National Cabinet process – and in the case of energy reforms – as meant that little detail of what is discussed amongst energy ministers is known publicly.

While state and territory ministers often publicly vented their frustration about the lack of national action on climate and energy policy around meetings of the former COAG Energy Council, the new National Cabinet regime means ministers are bound by cabinet confidentiality rules and have since been largely mute about any dissatisfaction they may harbour about the proceedings of the new committee.

The Energy National Cabinet Reform Committee has taken oversight for the work of the Energy Security Board. Its secrecy requirements have resulted in key information about energy market reforms being proposed by the Energy Security Board being withheld from the broader energy market for weeks after reform recommendations were delivered to ministers.

Much of the energy market was reliant on leaked information as their main source of knowledge about the Energy Security Board’s post-2025 re-design of the National Electricity Market – which will amount to the most significant shake-up of the market’s design since its formation.

The control that Taylor wields over the energy committee also meant that the first official public release of information about landmark energy market reforms was first released to news outlet

sympathetic to the Morrison government before it was released to the wider public.

The added protections being sought by the Morrison government will further prevent the release of information about meetings of the Energy National Cabinet Reform Committee – with the public left in the dark about even the agendas of meetings.

RenewEconomy has sought access to documents relating to meetings of the Energy National Cabinet Reform Committee on several occasions – as well as a wide range of documents relating to other government decisions through freedom of information laws, but access has been denied in most cases.

A recent review of freedom of information requests completed by the Grata Fund found that the Morrison government has often unlawfully blocked access to documents, undermining laws intended to support public transparency and accountability of government decisions.

The latest legislation looks set to be opposed by both Labor and the Greens. The Morrison government will likely be reliant on One Nation senators to pass the laws through the senate.

September 2, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy, legal, politics, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

20 reasons why the Lucas Heights unviable production of medical isotopes is a sham and a dud.

The claim by Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) that it requires additional storage
capacity for intermediate level nuclear or radioactive waste at its Lucas Heights operations is completely false and consequently unjustified in all respects.
REASONS

  1. The present storage capacity at Lucas Heights is more than adequate for many years and even decades – this is the view of the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANA) as the regulator and licensing authority
  2. The main undertaking representing 80% of its total operations and activity by ANSTO at Lucas Heights is the
    production of nuclear medicineThe main undertaking representing 80% of its total operations and activity by ANSTO at Lucas Heights is theproduction of nuclear medicine
  3. Only some 10% of this production annually is for local use in Australia
  4. The remainder is sold overseas but it is a very limited market
  5. The predominant purchasers of this production of nuclear medicine are third world countries
  6. These countries cannot afford to pay ANSTO for this nuclear medicine and hence it is treated as additional foreign aid by Australia
  7. The manufacture of nuclear medicine even in fully and proper commercial circumstances is a large loss making proposition
  1. It is estimated from authoritative overseas research that revenue from isotope production for nuclear medicine would likely offset only approximately 10% to 15% of the costs of the reactor used for the production and this does not include all the other costs associated with the production

9. Added to this ANSTO is regarded by world standards as an extremely high cost manufacturer of nuclear medicine

  1. ANSTO is fully funded as to its existence and operations by the federal government

11. On top of this ANSTO has proved to be a less than efficient producer of nuclear medicine due to the instances of shutting down of its reactor at Lucas Heights

  1. When this has occurred ANSTO purchased the nuclear medicine isotopes from overseas which has proved to be more efficient and cheaper than local production
  1. It was reported that ANSTO received $238 million last year as its annual funding from the federal government
  1. ANSTO because of this funding has no incentive or need to achieve profitability particularly in its production of nuclear medicine which represents its major undertaking and operational activity
  1. In any case there is a strong move in medicine throughout the world away from using nuclear medicine in all diagnosis and treatment due to its harmful nature
  1. Some countries are virtually banning nuclear medicine both in its manufacture and its use locally and for export because of its inherent dangerous nature
  2. An alternative permanent disposal would be better.
  1. The indisputable conclusion internationally is that the use of nuclear medicine generated by reactors is rapidly declining to a level where its future production will no longer be viable
  1. In view of the foregoing there are no justifiable or valid reasons or pretext for :
    (a) the continued production by ANSTO of nuclear medicine by using a nuclear reactor for whatever reasons at Lucas Heights or elsewhere in Australia;
    (b) the continuing loss making production of nuclear medicine by ANSTO at Lucas Heights for export overseas;
    (c) the need to increase the storage capacity at Lucas Heights for intermediate level waste generated by the production of nuclear medicine; and

20 No pretext for the establishment whatsoever of the nuclear waste management facility by the federal government at Napandee

August 31, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Some uncomfortable questions for Sam Chard · General Manager, Australian Radioactive Waste Agency.

Why was Manager Chard nearly two years ago referring to Whyalla as a port for the transport of nuclear material?

Was this to pave the way for using Whyalla for transport of nuclear material for the proposed Kimba facility? 

Had the Whyalla municipal administration been approached about the possible use of its port for transport of nuclear material?

Has Chard or someone else from the federal government approached or discussed possible transport arrangements for nuclear material with any transport or logistics contractors or consultants?

If so will Chard publicly and fully disclose the extent and details of the approaches or discussions including identifying the contractors or consultants? 

Was the Whyalla municipal administration involved in these approaches and discussions?

Did any of the contractors or consultants point out that the transport proposals by the federal government were in breach of international standards and prescriptions and did not follow the recognised best practices with respect to the transport ingredient of those proposals?

In seeking this information Chard should be warned that parts of it are already known and hence she should be careful about the veracity of her responses and waive any claims of confidentiality
Presumably the parties seeking any form of judicial review would be able to seek this information as a pre-trial disclosure

August 19, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Defence hides Australia’s weapon sales to Israel amid war crimes investigation into Palestine,

The Australian Centre for International Justice joined with the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council to write a submission to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on the feasibility of a free trade agreement (FTA) with Israel. The organisations said Australia should not negotiate an FTA but should instead impose an arms embargo on Israel and suspend defence cooperation and defence industry partnerships.

This call was echoed in a petition signed by 22,000 Australians and tabled in federal parliament last week. The petition demanded targeted sanctions, an arms embargo, an end to defence cooperation and an end to all Australian support for Israeli settlements.

Defence hides Australia’s weapon sales to Israel amid war crimes investigation into Palestine,  https://www.michaelwest.com.au/defence-hides-australias-weapon-sales-to-israel-amid-war-crimes-investigation-into-palestine/ By Michelle Fahy Revolving Doors|August 16, 2021   

Defence has elevated “opportunities for Australian companies” over human rights and transparency in weapons sales, as an investigation by Michelle Fahy reveals 187 permits for military exports to Israel.

The Defence Department approved 187 permits for military exports to Israel in the six years to March 31, according to figures released under Freedom of Information (FOI).

The figures prompted questions about the ethics of Australia approving the export of weapons, military technology and other military goods to Israel, given its large number of documented violations of international human rights law in Palestine over decades.

In May, Israel conducted a devastating military campaign against the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. The bombardment lasted 11 days with the UN reporting more than 220 Palestinians killed, including 63 children, and thousands injured. At least 12 Israelis also died following indiscriminate rocket attacks by armed Palestinian groups.

There are Defence reports showing Australia has sent military exports to Israel from the early years of this century, but ties between the two countries have deepened in the past few years. Australia and Israel have recently expanded cooperation on national security, defence and cyber security. The two countries signed a defence industry cooperation agreement in October 2017. Eighteen months later, a new Australian Trade and Defence Office opened in West Jerusalem tasked with facilitating trade, investment and defence industry partnerships. Trade Minister Dan Tehan is also canvassing a free trade agreement with Israel.

“It is horrifying to learn that Australia is approving so many export permits to Israel – one of the most heavily militarised states in the world, which has been subjecting the Palestinian people to a brutal military occupation for over five decades,” said Rawan Arraf, Executive Director, Australian Centre for International Justice. “It’s highly likely then, that Australian goods are being used in aiding and abetting war crimes and crimes against humanity. We have a right to know what is being exported and to demand that it ends.”

Continue reading

August 16, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, secrets and lies, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Minister Pitt – an expert in ”weasel words”, obscuring the truth about nuclear waste


https://www.neimagazine.com/news/newsaustralian-government-names-preferred-site-for-waste-facility-8991297?fbclid=IwAR2ff81oErRTHbzggGt3GeqqghFSYmbu6HPECUgpUbBPOmlbKf1Sx5Fg0OE


Napandee station, near Kimba on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula has been officially named as the preferred site for Australia’s domestically generated nuclear waste.

Note Minister Pitt’s declaration that waste classified as “intermediate” will only be stored “temporarily” and “sometimes”.

We’ve discussed the deceptive labeling of reprocessed spent fuel as intermediate level nuclear waste in this group before- other countries consider this substance to be high level nuclear waste.

Newcomers to this subject (ie. the general public) could be easily misled to believe that there is no spent nuclear fuel to be stored at the site through this wordsmithery.

August 16, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Resources Minister Keith Pitt and his bald-faced lies about the Leonora nuclear waste proposal

26 July Kazzi Jai on Whyalla Pitt lies

Federal Resources Minister Keith Pitt said the government did not receive detailed information to independently assess a site at Leonora, and couldn’t accept “unverified information” which could “cut short” the consultation and assessment process.”

This is the BIGGEST BALD FACED LIE Minister Keith Pitt has said yet!!

The current Leonora site proposal HAS been actively giving the Feds detailed information since 2017 I believe…..at EXACTLY the SAME TIME as Kimba was allowed to SUBMIT AGAIN into the mix after being taken COMPLETELY OFF the list in April 2016, after being deemed unsuitable!
Can’t have it both ways!

In fact ANOTHER site in Leonora Western Australia WAS in the mix back in 2015, as one of the SEVEN short listed sites deemed suitable by the Feds – by the then Josh Frydenberg as Minister at the time!
It was a different site in Leonora – but nevertheless, echoes the SAME SITUATION as Kimba in many ways!

July 26, 2021 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, politics, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Key witness in Julian Assange case admits to lies in indictment

A maj­or wit­n­ess in the United States’ Depart­ment of Justice ca­se against Ju­li­an Assange has admitted to fabricat­ing key accusati­ons in the indict­ment against the Wiki­leaks found­er. STUNDIN,  Bjartmar Oddur Þeyr Alexanderssonbjartmar@stundin.is, Gunnar Hrafn Jónssonritstjorn@stundin.is 26 June 21,

A major witness in the United States’ Department of Justice case against Julian Assange has admitted to fabricating key accusations in the indictment against the Wikileaks founder. The witness, who has a documented history with sociopathy and has received several convictions for sexual abuse of minors and wide-ranging financial fraud, made the admission in a newly published interview in Stundin where he also confessed to having continued his crime spree whilst working with the Department of Justice and FBI and receiving a promise of immunity from prosecution.

The man in question, Sigurdur Ingi Thordarson, was recruited by US authorities to build a case against Assange after misleading them to believe he was previously a close associate of his. In fact he had volunteered on a limited basis to raise money for Wikileaks in 2010 but was found to have used that opportunity to embezzle more than $50,000 from the organization. Julian Assange was visiting Thordarson’s home country of Iceland around this time due to his work with Icelandic media and members of parliament in preparing the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative, a press freedom project that produced a parliamentary resolution supporting whistleblowers and investigative journalism. 

The United States is currently seeking Assange’s extradition from the United Kingdom in order to try him for espionage relating to the release of leaked classified documents. If convicted, he could face up to 175 years in prison. The indictment has sparked fears for press freedoms in the United States and beyond and prompted strong statements in support of Assange from Amnesty International, Reporters without borders, the editorial staff of the Washington Post and many others. 

US officials presented an updated version of an indictment against him to a Magistrate court in London last summer. The veracity of the information contained therein is now directly contradicted by the main witness, whose testimony it is based on.

No instruction from Assange

The court documents refer to Mr Thordarson simply as “Teenager” (a reference to his youthful appearance rather than true age, he is 28 years old) and Iceland as “NATO Country 1” but make no real effort to hide the identity of either. They purport to show that Assange instructed Thordarson to commit computer intrusions or hacking in Iceland. 

The aim of this addition to the indictment was apparently to shore up and support the conspiracy charge against Assange in relation to his interactions with Chelsea Manning. Those occurred around the same time he resided in Iceland and the authors of the indictment felt they could strengthen their case by alleging he was involved in illegal activity there as well. This activity was said to include attempts to hack into the computers of members of parliament and record their conversations.

In fact, Thordarson now admits to Stundin that Assange never asked him to hack or access phone recordings of MPs. His new claim is that he had in fact received some files from a third party who claimed to have recorded MPs and had offered to share them with Assange without having any idea what they actually contained. He claims he never checked the contents of the files or even if they contained audio recordings as his third party source suggested. He further admits the claim, that Assange had instructed or asked him to access computers in order to find any such recordings, is false.

Nonetheless, the tactics employed by US officials appear to have been successful as can be gleaned from the ruling of Magistrate Court Judge Vanessa Baraitser on January 4th of this year. Although she ruled against extradition, she did so purely on humanitarian grounds relating to Assange’s health concerns, suicide risk and the conditions he would face in confinement in US prisons. With regards to the actual accusations made in the indictment Baraitser sided with the arguments of the American legal team, including citing the specific samples from Iceland which are now seriously called into question.

Other misleading elements can be found in the indictment, and later reflected in the Magistrate’s judgement, based on Thordarson’s now admitted lies. One is a reference to Icelandic bank documents. The Magistrate court judgement reads: “It is alleged that Mr. Assange and Teenager failed a joint attempt to decrypt a file stolen from a “NATO country 1” bank”………..

On the FBI radar

Thordarson’s rogue acts were not limited to communications of that nature as he also admits to Stundin that he set up avenues of communication with journalists and had media pay for lavish trips abroad where he mispresented himself as an official representative of WikiLeaks……………………….  https://stundin.is/grein/13627/key-witness-in-assange-case-admits-to-lies-in-indictment/

July 8, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, legal, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Maralinga nuclear bomb tests – British and Australian governments’ callous cruelty to First Nations people.

Australia’s Chernobyl: The British carried out nuclear tests on Indigenous land. It will never heal.   https://www.mamamia.com.au/maralinga-nuclear-testing/ CHELSEA MCLAUGHLIN, JULY 5, 2021  For tens of thousands of years, the Aṉangu people lived on the warm, red earth of their country.

The land provided them with food, water and shelter as they travelled around an area we now know as outback Far North South Australia.

But after colonisation, they were moved off their land: forcibly removed, sent into missions across the region and displaced by train lines linking Australia’s east and west that impacted their water supply. 

Much of the information around the tests was highly classified, and some information remains so.

For tens of thousands of years, the Aṉangu people lived on the warm, red earth of their country.

The land provided them with food, water and shelter as they travelled around an area we now know as outback Far North South Australia.

But after colonisation, they were moved off their land: forcibly removed, sent into missions across the region and displaced by train lines linking Australia’s east and west that impacted their water supply. 

Much of the information around the tests was highly classified, and some information remains so.

Thirty per cent of the British and Australian servicemen who were exposed during these tests died of cancer, though a Royal Commission in 1984 was not able to reach a conclusion linking their health issues directly to the blasts. 

Similarly, many locals died prematurely, went blind and suffered from illness that may have been linked to radiation.

British nuclear scientists, wanting to determine the long-term effects of the tests on Australia and its citizens, ordered the testing of dead Australian infants and children for radiation contamination.

Between 1957 and 1978 in hospitals around Australia, bones were secretly removed from 21,830 bodies. They were reduced to ash and sent away to be analysed for the presence of Strontium 90, a radioactive isotope produced by nuclear fission.

Unsurprisingly, none of the First Nations people of the region were told about the tests and many of the bones were taken without permission.

Associate professor Liz Tynan, the author of Atomic Thunder: The Maralinga Story, told Mamamia‘s The Quicky First Nations people were still in the area during the periods of testing, and this led to disastrous consequences.

Tynan said the Milpuddie family – Charlie, Edie, two kids and their dogs – were found by British service personnel in 1957, camped on the crater left by the bomb Marcoo soon after it had been detonated. 

They were rounded up and most of the family, not Edie, but most of them, were given showers. Edie didn’t wish to have a shower,” Tynan explained.

“They were tested for radioactivity and the geiger counters did detect radioactivity, particularly on the young boy Henry. Anyway, there were rather insensitively treated I suppose, given showers, had clothes put on them and then take off down south to a mission.”

Their dogs were shot in front of them. Edie was pregnant at the time, and she later lost her child.

“It was a tragic story and indicative of the callous approach to Indigenous people that was displayed by both the British government and their officials that were conducting the tests, and by the Australian government as well,” Tynan said.

Following the testing, many Aṉangu people returned to the area, but the lands that had previously sustained and protected them were now poison.

We still don’t know the truth impact of the bombs at Maralinga, as well as nearby Emu Fields and the Montebello Islands off the coast of Western Australia.

“The South Australian Department of Health commissioned a fairly extensive study, [but] that study was hampered by the fact there was no base-line data from which to understand the general health of the population before the tests,” Tynan said.

The study did show an increase in various cancers, but most of the findings were inconclusive due to a lack of information. Indigenous Australians were not counted in the census at the time and there was very little known about the health of the populations.

In 1964, a limited cleanup of the Maralinga site, named ‘Operation Hercules’, took place. 

A year after a 1966 survey into the level of contamination at the site, a second clean-up titled ‘Operation Brumby’ filled 21 pits with contaminated equipment and covered them with 650 tonnes of concrete.

Tynan said it was later found the survey data was drastically wrong, and the contamination was 10 times worse than thought.

It wasn’t until decades later, with the help whistleblowers and scientists, that the government began to realise the true, horrifying extent of the damage done to the land at Maralinga.

Under an agreement between the governments of the United Kingdom and Australia in 1995, another clean-up took place. And while this was more thorough than the previous, it still came with issues.

Whistleblower Alan Parkinson, who wrote the 2007 book Maralinga: Australia’s Nuclear Waste Cover-up, exposed the unsatisfactory methods.

The plan had been to treat several thousand tonnes of debris contaminated with plutonium by a process called situ vitrification. Against the advice of Parkinson, the government extended the contract of the project manager, even though that company had no knowledge of the complex process of vitrification.

Parkinson was let go from the project.

The government and the project manager then embarked on a hybrid scheme in which some pits would be exhumed and others treated by vitrification. After successfully treating 12 pits, the 13th exploded and severely damaged the equipment. The government then cancelled the vitrification and simply exhumed the remaining pits, placed the debris in a shallow pit and covered it with clean soil.

Parkinson told The Quicky another, complete clean-up of Maralinga could take place, but it was unlikely because of the cost and the courage it would take to admit the previous attempts were insufficient.

Around the same time as the 90s clean up was the Australian government push for a nuclear waste dump to be located nearby. 

Fearing even further poisoning of their country, First Nations woman Eileen Wani Wingfield co-founded the Coober Pedy Women’s Council to campaign against the proposal.

The plan was eventually abandoned, but has popped up again in many forms over the decades. Currently, the Coalition is amending a bill that could see a site set up near Kimba.

Glen Wingfield, Eileen’s son, has spent his life working and learning from his parents’ tireless campaign for protection of their country.

The theme of NAIDOC Week 2021 is Heal Country! but as Wingfield told The Quicky, much of the Aṉangu lands in and around Maralinga are beyond healing.

“A lot of the Aboriginal communities that live in and around that area, they just will not and do not go back near that country. I think that’s a word, healing, that we can’t use in the same sentence with that area.”

Tynan agreed, saying there are parts of the area that will be uninhabitable for a quarter of a million years.

“There are parts of the site that you can’t go to, that are still very dangerous,” she said.

“The real problem at Maralinga was the plutonium which was detonated in a series of trials… The particular type of plutonium they used, plutonium 239, has a half-life of 21,400 years which takes hundreds of thousands of years for that radioactivity to diminish.”

Wingfield said the broken connection between these people and their lands is “just downright disgraceful and horrible”.

“No amount of conversation will ever cover what’s been done for people in and around. The lasting effects of health issues on people have been passed through people who were there to generational abnormalities… I think when you talk compensation and stuff, I don’t think we’ll ever get close.”

July 5, 2021 Posted by | aboriginal issues, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, environment, health, history, personal stories, reference, secrets and lies, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Nuclear waste intended for Kimba, -used to be classified as ”high level” – now called ”intermediate”.


Zac Eagle
 No nuclear waste dump in South Australia , 16 June 21

teSponst9oreduh  · “High Level waste from the existing HIFAR reactor is due to return in 2015 from reprocessing in France”Federal Parliament – 24 January 2005.

This is the stuff they want to dump in SA.When was it reclassified as Intermediate Waste? The link https://www.aph.gov.au/…/BN/2011-2012/RadioActiveWaste

June 17, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

ANSTO’s dodgy classification of nuclear wastes.

When the re-processed material is returned to Australia invariably the processing country refers to that material as high-level waste but ANSTO reclassifies it as intermediate level on the very weak argument of the classifications in Europe being different to Australia……  it seems ludicrous that it should assume its own manner of classification and against the treaty adopted classifications of IAEA and adhered to by other countries.

a known area of seismic volatility with several notable earthquakes recorded in the past fifty years…. the area is prone to flooding with expectations of increased magnitude of floods.
Peter Remta  – submission to Senate Committee on National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment (Site Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill 2020   [Provisions] Submission 65
Excerpt
“………MANAGEMENT OF FACILITY
The intended management by the government of the disposal and storage of the different classes of nuclear wastes at the Kimba facility is technically flawed and inappropriate based most recent scientific research and nuclear cycle experiences throughout the world.
The proposal by the government is to dispose of the low-level waste in containers above ground while the intermediate level waste would be temporarily stored for an unspecified period again in containers held above the ground.
Based on the prescriptions and requirements of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) age of the different classes of nuclear waste at the Kimba facility is technically flawed and inappropriate based on ths outlined in its Safety Code11 :
(a) the low level waste should be disposed of by shallow burial; and
(b) the intermediate level waste should even when stored on a temporary basis be geologically buried at appropriate depths.
This is essential in the case of the intermediate level waste due to its highly dangerous and harmful status and the serious health consequences of human exposure.
In addition recent experience overseas has shown that many of the containers used for the above ground disposal and storage of nuclear waste are prone to corrosion and other integrity problems which can only be readily overcome by geological burial until better and longer lasting containers can be developed.
As a result most international experts are now advocating and even demanding underground burial of nuclear waste of all levels for disposal or even temporary storage and are quite surprised at the course being followed by Australia having regard to its prowess in the resources industry.
INTERNATIONAL OBLIGATIONS
The prescriptive codes of IAEA have been fully adopted by ARPANSA12 as its standards for the classification and treatment and management of nuclear waste in Australia.
However and with seemingly little local criticism the government and its plans for the now chosen Kimba facility have ignored these prescriptions and requirements which may well lead to ARPANSA not licensing the various stages of the construction and operations of the facility at Kimba.
The government has been unable to assure the members of the Kimba community that ARPANSA will in all probability licence the various stages of the establishment and operations of the government’s facility.
Even more importantly the execution of the proposals of the government in establishing the facility and its subsequent operations are in breach of its international treaty obligations which would among other things give any aggrieved community group the right to complain to the United Nations.
CONVENTION OBLIGATIONS
It is interesting that a new subsection 3(2) of the Bill gives effect to Australia’s obligations as a party to the Joint Convention for the safe and secure management of what is defined as decontrolled material and in particular Australia’s obligations under Chapters 3 and 4 of the Joint Convention.
Despite this legislative provision the subsequent passing of the Bill cannot excuse or justify any preceding breaches by the government of its obligations in that regard.
However it suggests that the government has doubts about the validity and integrity of its proposals under international law relating to its convention obligations.
In any event the Joint Convention was in 1997 while the prescriptive safety codes of IAEA and ARPANSA referred to in notations 10 and12 requiring underground burial of nuclear waste were issued in 2009 and 2010 respectively and I suggest intentionally excluded from the explanatory memorandum and the Bill.
NATURE OF WASTE
The government has always stated that the facility at Kimba would only be used for the permanent disposal of low-level waste and indefinite storage of intermediate level waste with that storage period being up to 100 years.
As already stated in both instances the waste would be held above the ground which is against the prescriptions and requirements of the international regulatory bodies including in particular the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
The waste generated at Lucas Heights by its reactor is of high level when it is sent overseas for re-processing but the government does not give it a classification or even describes it as waste before its departure.
When the re-processed material is returned to Australia invariably the processing country refers to that material as high-level waste but ANSTO reclassifies it as intermediate level on the very weak argument of the classifications in Europe being different to Australia.
Considering that Australia does not have a nuclear industry nor a highly regarded regime of controlling a relatively small amount of nuclear waste it seems ludicrous that it should assume its own manner of classification and against the treaty adopted classifications of IAEA and adhered to by other countries.
Nuclear waste generated at Lucas Heights and then sent by Australia to Scotland for re-processing will now under a substitution agreement between Scotland and England (to which Australia is not a direct party) be returned to Australia as high level waste which was generated in England and reprocessed at Sellafield which until recently was one of the largest multi-function nuclear industry cycle hubs in the world.
This has never been properly explained by the government to the Kimba community or in fact to the public in general even though its actions and conduct have been questioned by overseas experts within the nuclear industry.
Moreover and despite the substitution arrangements the so-called reprocessed waste being returned to Australia by England is completely contrary to the requirement of the facility at Kimba to deal only with locally generated waste.
In addition the government refuses to disclose the levels of radionuclides in the waste to be sent to Kimba which is a most important factor in the management and disposal of nuclear waste.
CENTRAL FACILITY
The government has described the facility at Kimba as being a central one for Australia with the implication that it would dispose of or store as required all the present legend or stockpiled waste in Australia and all waste generated locally in the future.
However the government has failed to explain how it or any future operator of the facility will gain or acquire the waste currently held in numerous locations (stated tobe over 100) throughout Australia since except for the waste from Lucas Heightswhich is run by ANSTO and some other federal government installations it has has no rights or control over the other waste.
At the very least it would require some constitutional changes by whatever means possible to gain legislative power over that waste which would undoubtably be a difficult exercise and to a large extent would completely defeat the notion of a central national facility.
TECHNICAL ASSESSMENT
After accepting Napandee as a nominated site the government engaged AECOM to carry out what is described as a characterisation study of the site at Napandee which concluded with a technical report dated 23 July 2018.
This study was preceded in February 2018 by a preliminary outline by AECOM of what work would be carried out at Kimba on both of the nominated sites under the characterisation study.
The Department itself had claimed what is designated as a phase 1 assessment under the nomination guidelines giving effect to the existing legislation and issued a summary report which while undated was probably made public in July or August of 2017.

That summary added little to the technical nature of both Kimba sites and dealt principally with community consultations and the results of a recent ballotWhile all three reports were colourful presentations with elaborate artwork and photographs in reality by technical standards they contained little proper information to support and satisfy the selection of Napandee as the site for the waste management facility.

The reason is that most of the concluding opinions in the reports by AECOM were inconclusive and suggested additional work to meet the required or desired status to be acceptable for the facility at Napandee.
The Department has recently issued what it calls a fact sheet on Napandee which is dated February 2020 and which again is a high standard presentation in its artwork and photography.
However the conclusion in the fact sheet under the heading of Site Characterisation
After completion of the technical assessments at Napandee, the Department ofIndustry, Science, Energy and Resources has been advised that with further assessment, any supporting infrastructure constraints and risks posed by
environmental hazards such as seismic and flooding events, can be mitigated via design solutions.

This conclusion again shows that the Napandee selection was both premature as to its choice by the government due to the lack of a full assessment and investigation of the site and completely unsuitable for the facility.

Again drawing on the experience of the mining industry the technical assessment of Napandee would be regarded as an uncommercial exercise well short of a scoping and feasibility study to determine its suitability for the waste facility.
It also gives proof to the adage that governments should not be involved in businesses as they invariably end up as commercial disasters.:
However irrespective of the government’s technical assessments and proposed engineering designing the Napandee site will remain highly unsuitable for the waste facility due to its sandy sedimentary setting from surface to a vertical depth of approximately 30 metres in a known area of seismic volatility with several notable earthquakes recorded in the past fifty years.
The area has a relatively shallow water table (being only some 10 metres down) which will undoubtedly lead to various problems of hydrology including contamination of underground water flows from the escape of any nuclear waste material to be brought to Napandee.
While no hydrology studies have been done AECOM recommended modelling to estimate the risks of floods as the area is prone to flooding with expectations of increased magnitude of floods.

June 17, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Australia’s News Corpse, Nine media, and Resources Minister Keith Pitt have been duped by the Minerals Council of Australia.

Australia’s major media organisations, News Corp and Nine Entertainment, have been duped by the mining lobby’s false claims about its contribution to Australia. The industry peak body, Minerals Council of Australia, has failed to include in its analysis the more than $72 billion in GST rebates the industry has received between 2010 and 2018, and an estimated $80.6 billion over the past 10 years.

The Australian, the Australian Financial Review, and the Minister for Resources Keith Pitt have consistently repeated the misleading claims provided to them by the mining lobby via the firm the MCA hired to conduct its reports, Deloitte Access Economics.

Deloitte found that the minerals industry had contributed more than $238 billion in company tax and royalty payments since 2010, with $132 billion from company tax alone.

However, the report avoids mentioning that the mining industry, as an exporting industry, receives a huge GST rebate every year…………. https://www.michaelwest.com.au/murdoch-media-nine-entertainment-mining-lobby-busted-for-record-bullartistry-go-into-hiding/

June 14, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, secrets and lies | Leave a comment