Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

UK’s nuclear reprocessing plant closes -the one that was sending wastes to Australia

15th Nov 2018 On the morning after the Financial Times has called on the UK Government to reassess its long-term energy plans following the demise of Toshiba’sMoorside nuclear project, the Stop Hinkley Campaign has published a  briefing about lessons we can learn from the Sellafield Thermal Oxide Reprocessing Plant which is in the process of closing after only 24 years of operation and a very chequered performance.

The “Lessons for Hinkley from Sellafield” briefing says: The cost of building THORP increased from
£300m in 1977 to £1.8bn on completion in 1992. With the additional cost of associated facilities this figure rose to £2.8bn. Originally expected to reprocess 7,000 tonnes of spent fuel in its first ten years, it has managed only around 9,300 in 24 years.

The original rationale for THORP ended with the closure of the UK’s fast reactor programme in 1994. The new rationale – to produce plutonium fuel for ordinary reactors – was a disaster costing the taxpayer £2.2bn.

Stop Hinkley Spokesperson Roy Pumfrey said: “The rationale for building the THORP plant at Sellafield had disappeared before it even opened. The lesson for 2018 is that we should scrap Hinkley C now before costs escalate. The cancellation costs are small relative to the £50billion extra we’ll have to pay for Hinkley’s electricity, if it ever generates any. If we wait any longer to scrap it,
we risk heading for another Sellafield-scale financial disaster.”  http://www.stophinkley.org/PressReleases/pr181115.pdf

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November 19, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, wastes | Leave a comment

The spent nuclear fuel rods at Lucas Heights can only sensibly be treated as high level waste

Steve Dale  Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 17 Nov 18 , “ANSTO like to say that Australia doesn’t generate High Level Waste” . The Emperor’s new clothes, the reactor’s spent fuel asset – are similar fairy tales

“‘The spent fuel rods at Lucas Heights can only sensibly be treated as high level waste. The pretence that spent fuel rods constitute an asset must stop” from the Research Reactor Review, Future Reactions: Report of the Research Reactor Review, 1993
   “ANSTO like to say that Australia doesn’t generate High Level Waste” . The Emperor’s new clothes, the reactor’s spent fuel asset – are similar fairy tales

“‘The spent fuel rods at Lucas Heights can only sensibly be treated as high level waste. The pretence that spent fuel rods constitute an asset must stop” from the Research Reactor Review, Future Reactions: Report of the Research Reactor Review, 1993  https://www.facebook.com/groups/344452605899556/

November 17, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Britain’s Sellafield nuclear reprocessing ends (but where will Australia’s toxic used fuel rods go?)

Commercial nuclear reprocessing ends at Sellafield site , BBC 14 November 2018   Reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel from around the world has ended at Sellafield.

The last batch of waste has gone through its Thermal Oxide Reprocessing Plant (Thorp), which opened in 1994.

It has generated an estimated £9bn by extracting new nuclear fuel from 9,000 tonnes of used rods from 30 customers in countries as far afield as Japan.

Thorp will operate until the 2070s as a storehouse for spent fuel as the site around it in Cumbria is cleaned up.

Sellafield Ltd said there would be no redundancies as a result of the closure, with all employees in roles no longer required offered alternative jobs in the business.

The decision to wind it down was taken in 2012, as a result of the majority of its customers opting to store rather than reprocess their fuel…….https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-cumbria-46206495

November 17, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, wastes | Leave a comment

Federal govt on nuclear waste dump: Minister has “absolute discretion”, dismisses Greens’ concerns

The Minister’s ability to exercise judgement to determine whether there is broad community support, based on the circumstances relevant to each nomination, is consistent with his absolute discretion under the Act.

The Government does not support the recommendations proposed in the dissenting statements by the Australian Greens or Centre Alliance

Federal government’s response to the Senate Economic References Committee report into the site selection process for a national radioactive waste management facility.  Senate Thursday 15 November 2018  Economics References Committee

Government Response to Report

INTRODUCTION

The Australian Government welcomes the opportunity to respond to the findings and recommendations of the Senate Economic References Committee report into the site selection process for a National Radioactive Waste Management Facility (the Facility), and agrees to the Committee’s recommendations, either in full or in-principle. Continue reading

November 17, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Nov 28 in Flinders and Kimba – ClOSED meetings on nuclear waste dump plan?

Katrina Bohr  No Nuclear Waste Dump Anywhere in South Australia, 14 Nov 18
Is the National nuclear waste dump a transparent process?

After 3 years of supposed community consultation are we
to presume that they have the community’s best interests
in mind?
Are they really listening to those affected by this proposal?
Apparently there is likely to be closed meetings on the 27th in the Flinders, and Kimba on the 28th of Nov.
Should we the community be excluded at such a critical point in the process? https://www.facebook.com/groups/1314655315214929/

November 15, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Federal government nuclear waste compromises Safety and Security in South Australia

 Nuclear Brief (10 Nov 2018) by David Noonan, Independent Environment Campaigner The Federal gov. is compromising Safety and Security in SA with ANSTO irradiated nuclear fuel waste to be shipped through Whyalla or Port Pirie to an indefinite (“for approx. 100 years”) above ground nuclear waste Store to be imposed on to SA at Kimba or at Hawker.

Two shipments of ANSTO nuclear fuel waste are intended in the first 2 years of Store operations.

Some 100 x B-Double truckloads (see p.179) of Intermediate Level Wastes (ILW) are also to be trucked into SA, primarily from Lucas Heights, in the first 4 years of Store operations in SA.

ANSTO nuclear fuel wastes were prohibited by the SA State Liberal gov. in 2000 and ANSTO’s Intermediate Level Wastes (& Low Level wastes) were prohibited by the State ALP gov. in 2003.

Imposed illegal transport and indefinite above ground storage of nuclear wastes is untenable:

The Federal nuclear regulator ARPANSA states that nuclear fuel wastes & Intermediate Level reactor wastes require radiation shielding and require isolation from the environment for over 10,000 years.

However, after 60 years ANSTO has no nuclear waste disposal capacity with none foreseeable for multiple decades while nuclear waste production is set to increase to more than double stockpiles.

ANSTO practice & the intended Store in SA are contrary to Nuclear Safety Committee advice to the CEO of ARPANSA (Nov 2013) “regarding safety implications of waste stored in interim storage”, re:

“International best practice points to the need to have in place a policy and infrastructure for final management and ultimate disposal of waste before activities generating waste commence.”

SA faces decades of nuclear accident and terrorist risks & impacts in ANSTO nuclear waste shipments – first from the UK & from Lucas Heights, with the next 40 years of ANSTO nuclear fuel waste to be shipped to SA as reprocessed nuclear wastes from France and potentially direct from Lucas Heights.

The Australian Radioactive Waste Management Framework (DIIS April 2018, p.4) reports total Intermediate Level Wastes at 1,770 m3 – with 95% (by volume) arising as Federal gov. wastes.

The Federal gov. plans to more than double Intermediate Level Wastes to produce a further 1,960 m 3 over next 40 years, with 1,850 m3 (95%) of that arising from ANSTO Lucas Heights operations.

SA faces a total of approx. 210 x B-Double truckloads of Federal gov. Intermediate Level Wastes in an agenda to more than double ANSTO’s 60 year stockpile of ILW over the next 40 years – all to be trucked or shipped into SA for indefinite above ground storage in regional SA.

 In Contrast: States/Territories hold approx. 105 m3 of largely historical Intermediate Level Wastes (ILW), with a Federal Review in 2014 projecting ‘only minor future ILW arising’. S/T’s ILW are set to fall from currently approx. 5% (by volume) to under 3% of ILW intended to be Stored in SA.

The proposed above ground Store in SA is primarily 95+ % for Federal gov. Nuclear wastes.

  1. See: Nuclear Brief (1/8/18) by David Noonan “Federal gov. names SA Ports to impose nuclear waste Shipments” https://nuclear.foe.org.au/wp-content/uploads/SA-Nuclear-Port-Brief-August-

Nuclear Safety Committee advice against dual handling transport for interim storage:

Nuclear Safety Committee (NSC) advice to the CEO of ARPANSA (Nov 2013) addresses Transport issues a way that clearly predicates against proposed Federal gov. indefinite above ground Storage of ANSTO irradiated nuclear fuel waste and Intermediate Level reactor wastes in regional SA.

 This NSC advice states that dual handling in transport associated with interim storage “does not represent international best practice” and raises “implications for security” and for safety, Noting that: “ANSTO already has comprehensive security arrangements in place” at Lucas Heights.

  1. Transport … The criteria of the Waste Guide “set out international best practice” (pp. 11); this promotes transport of ILW directly to a final storage or disposal facility rather than to interim storage at another facility, as is currently being proposed for the ILW generated from the reprocessing of HIFAR used nuclear fuel.

Thus, while transport of radioactive material has historically proved to have or present very low risks, it would appear that the dual handling and transport process associated with interim storage does not represent international best practice.

The Committee notes that the SAFETY GUIDE: Safe Transport of Radioactive Material 2008 Radiation Protection Series Publication No. 2.1 recommends contact time with the waste should be kept short.

Dual handling also has implications for security, pursuant to RPS 11. Code of Practice for the Security of Radioactive Sources (2007). The Committee notes that ANSTO already has comprehensive security arrangements in place at its LHSTC site. (Emphasis added)

In: “Nuclear Safety Committee advice to CEO of ARPANSA regarding safety implications of waste stored in interim storage” (22 Nov 2013), see: http://www.arpansa.gov.au/pubs/nsc/nsc_iwsadvice.rtf

The Federal gov. must stop compromising Safety & Security in SA with their untenable nuclear waste Storage plan and accept Extended Storage of nuclear fuel waste & ILW at Lucas Heights. ANSTO has to take responsibility for its own nuclear waste and keep it secure at Lucas Heights.

The NRWMF Low Level disposal site is also 95+ % for Federal – primarily ANSTO waste:

Low Level radioactive wastes (LLW) are also to double (p.4) from 4,967 m3 of Federal gov. LLW to add 4.843 m3 over 40 years – with 4,685 m3 ( 97 % ) to arise from ANSTO Lucas Heights operations.

 Many hundreds of truckloads of ANSTO Low Level radioactive wastes are to be dumped in SA. An initial approx. 277 truckloads of existing LLW will come in to SA (reported at 10 m3 of LLW per truckload) with a projected further approx. 468 truckloads over next 40 years of ANSTO operations.

In Total: Toward 1,000 truckloads of ANSTO wastes could be dumped in SA over 40 yrs.

For further Information, see: https://nuclear.foe.org.au/waste & an updated Submission to Minister Canavan, at: https://nuclear.foe.org.au/noonan/by David Noonan B.Sc., M.Env.St.

November 11, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Kimba property values plunge, following plans for nuclear waste dump there

Zac Eagle Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders https://www.facebook.com/groups/344452605899556/RangesSA  9 Nov 18 

 This is what happens to a property market when a town is going for a nuclear waste dump.

Kimba 28% down in 12 months.

November 10, 2018 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | 2 Comments

Protestors rally at South Australian Parliament against nuclear waste dump plan

Nuclear protesters converge at Parliament House https://www.transcontinental.com.au/story/5745040/nuclear-protesters-converge-at-parliament-house/, Marco Balsamo

November 8, 2018 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, Opposition to nuclear, South Australia | Leave a comment

Aboriginal landowners say delay in nuclear waste dump vote may bring more opposition to the plan

Any election delay to nuclear waste dump vote ‘more time to lobby’  https://www.sbs.com.au/nitv/article/2018/11/05/any-election-delay-nuclear-waste-dump-vote-more-time-lobby?fbclid=IwAR1cdI5kIpL_S-ItnTa7TRpEPZBNPgJEBOxT6qN4YrCp0Scgsd9nhUTNGG8

Traditional Owners hope any extra time over a community ballot will allow opposition to grow.

A site for Australia’s first nuclear waste dump will not be decided until after the next federal election, Centre Alliance Senator Rex Patrick says.

Two sites near Kimba, 460 kilometres northwest of Adelaide, and one site near Hawker in the Flinders Ranges have been shortlisted.

Community ballots were scheduled for August 20 and stalled by a legal challenge from the Barngarla people.

They argued all Traditional Owners should be eligible to vote, including those not living within the shire’s boundaries.

The next court hearing has been scheduled for January 30.

Mr Patrick said that Resources Minister Matt Canavan does not want the issue to overlap with the federal election.

“He doesn’t want a ballot in Kimba and Hawker happening at around about the same time as the election, he said it sort of confuses the issues,” the Centre Alliance senator told NITV News.

“In my view they simply won’t want to agitate this issue as there is huge division in both communities. They won’t want to agitate this issue this side of the election.”

Regina McKenzie, an Adnyamathanha Elder who opposes the waste dump, hopes to preserve her people’s songlines.

“I would love to see the Traditional Owners be respected and consulted the appropriate way,” she said.

Vince Coulthard, CEO of the Adnyamathanha Traditional Lands Association, has welcomed the ballot being postponed.

“The current government isn’t listening to us as Traditional Owners,” he said.

“This is in some ways good for us. It gives us more time to lobby.”

November 8, 2018 Posted by | aboriginal issues, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Australian govt’s nuclear waste dump plan has put Flinders Ranges/ Kimba residents through 3 years of hell

Barb Walker Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste In The Flinders Ranges, November 6
Oh phew!
As I said the Senator Patrick earlier in the week, it’s been 3 long years of stress, worry, bullying and division in our home lands.
The Federal Government needs to come clean on this and stop keeping our communities in the Flinders Ranges and Kimba dangling as part of their political game. Ever since they made plans for a federal nuclear waste dump for the Flinders Ranges/or Kimba, many people in our communities have become very unwell, some suicidal, which can be directly linked to the stress, bullying and division that this dump business has put upon us all. The government is culpable, and they should be held accountable for our past three years of hell. more https://www.facebook.com/groups/344452605899556/

November 8, 2018 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

A warning about the privatisation of the Federal government’s planned nuclear waste dump for South Australia

Kazzi Jai Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste In The Flinders Ranges November 4

What ALSO really worries me is the fine print in the proposal ….the one which says that management of the dump is to be done by possibly ANSTO, or a government department , or a PRIVATE ENTITY! Read it – it is in the Fact Sheets!

Now that is a real worry – equally when Adi Paterson made comments about upgrading ANSTO in Sydney in the last week or so, again talking about Federal funding for it, or from a PRIVATE SOURCE……

So beware! Once this can of worms is unleashed, we in South Australia and Australia in fact may be getting more than we bargain for! And just like PRIVATIZATION we have seen in other sectors of our community, the management goes straight overseas into overseas hands!

Also remember private company TEPCO running the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Given many warnings about the possibility of a large tsunami possibility several years earlier and given ample time to build a levy wall to deal with it, Their answer “we are looking into it”. They never did it. And there are other safety problems with the reactor with respect to protocol and safety equipment which just wasn’t there, even though by regulation it should have been! The disastrous consequences of this coverup the Japanese people now wear as a result!

Ask anyone in the Kimba or Hawker communities who are pro for the dump and you will find that they haven’t read this at all, and mistakenly think that it is ALL under ANSTO and ANSTO is the managing entity!

Reread the name of the dump – NATIONAL nuclear waste facility – NATIONAL does not say ANSTO!! Even ANSTO itself may not be ANSTO if things are going the way it seems to be heading!

Kazzi Jai The only way to counter this, is for each state to deal with its own waste, and the Lucas Heights waste to remain on site, where we are continually told it is perfectly safe!  https://www.facebook.com/groups/1021186047913052/

November 6, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Australia’s Liberal Coalition government is frightened that nuclear waste dump would become an election issue

Nuclear waste site to remain a mystery at federal election https://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/nuclear-waste-site-to-remain-a-mystery-at-federal-election/news-story/af6a30c2fcd294fcbbaef37676faf1a5  THE AUSTRALIAN  LUKE GRIFFITHS,  JOURNALIST @_LukeGriffiths, NOVEMBER 5, 2018

The location of Australia’s first nuclear waste dump will not be announced before the federal election, extending the uncertainty for those living near proposed sites, Rex Patrick says.  The Centre Alliance senator said the government’s selection process, which started in 2014, had been shrouded in “Soviet-style” secrecy and had divided communities.  He said Labor must reveal how it would proceed, given the “real possibility” it would form government after the election.

Two sites near Kimba, 465km northwest of Adelaide, and one site near Hawker in South Australia’s mid-north have been shortlisted.

Resources Minister Matt Canavan told The Australian in June a decision would be made in the “second half of this year” because the Coalition did not want the issue “overlapping with a federal election”.

However, a Kimba ballot scheduled for August 20 has been delayed by court action from a local Aboriginal group that believes traditional owners should vote, despite them not living within the shire’s boundaries.

 A hearing has been scheduled for January 30.

 “Senator Canavan has ruled out the vote taking place while there is a federal election running … they won’t want to touch this with a barge pole as it gets to the other side of Christmas,” Senator Patrick said.
“They wanted it done and dusted and people having the issue settled in their mind four or five months before the election, but this now lands it right into electoral territory and I can’t see them running with it.”
Senator Patrick said Labor had to make its position clear. “Will they continue the current flawed process; will they start again with both locations being put up as options; or will they abandon the Kimba and Hawker sites?” he said.

Labor industry spokesman Kim Carr would not be drawn on ALP plans: “Labor acknowledges this has been an ongoing issue for 30 years, with decades of reports, studies and tests.”

 Senator Canavan refused to engage in hypotheticals.

November 5, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Despite South Australia’s renewable energy success, are the Liberals targetting S.A. again for an international nuclear trash dump?

November 1, 2018 Posted by | South Australia, wastes | Leave a comment

Australian govt documents name Whyalla, Port Pirie, Port Lincoln as possible ports for nuclear waste transport

Dan Monceaux shared a link.Nuclear Fuel Cycle Watch South Australia
Group member, anti-nuclear campaigner and researcher David Noonan has advised that ports for the landing of Australia’s nuclear waste in SA (including reprocessed spent nuclear fuel) have been named in a series of technical papers published by the Australian government in July.

They include: Whyalla and Port Pirie (in the event of the Hawker site being chosen) and Whyalla, a yet-to-be-constructed port and Port Lincoln (should a site near Kimba be selected). Options are being explored regarding road and/or rail corridors.

October 27, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | 2 Comments

NUCLEAR WASTE DUMP DECISION DELAYED BY COURT ACTION 

The selection of a preferred site in rural South Australia for a national radioactive waste dump will likely be delayed until next year. …. (subscribersonly)
 https://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/decision-on-nuclear-waste-dump-location-delayed-until-next-year/news-story/380157b786abf27c905e517f1c98503a

October 23, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment