Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Australian government’s nuclear waste plans unacceptable – Dr Margaret Beavis

February 25, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, health | Leave a comment

Kimba radioactive trash Bill stagnates in the Senate, as Right-wing media extols nuclear power

Resources Minister Keith Pitt  and Australia’s nuclear schills must be getting a bit desperate.  The National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment (Site Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill 2020 keeps on not getting itself discussed in the Senate.

This could be because (a) it’s likely to be defeated, or (b) if passed, there will be a successful court action opposing it, or (c) the plan would not meet the required international safety standards.

I’m betting on (d) – the Senators just don’t know wotthell to do about it.

Meanwhile Australia’s the prevailing media, the Murdochracy,and commercial media is in a frenzy, in their anxiety about Australia’s huge need to embrace nuclear technology.

‘Extremely hypocritical’ for Greens to oppose nuclear power, Sky News, 18 February
The NT, with our abundance of Uranium, should be the Saudi Arabia of nuclear energy’ -Hepburn Advocate  19 February

Why we need to flick the switch and embrace nuclear power -THE AUSTRALIAN  23 February 

Coalition MPs in drive for nuclear energy – The Australian, 17 February
Nuclear power on National Party agenda for tackling emissions through Clean Energy Finance rules – Canberra Times, 22 February

February 23, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Wise warning to Australian government to withdraw embarrassing Nuclear Waste Dump Bill

Peter Remta, 21 Feb 21, to Senator Slade Brockman

I am aware that the Waste Management Amendment (Site Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill 2020 has been listed in the Senate’s order of business for Tuesday 23 February but with respect suggest that this a completely futile exercise on the part of your government and the responsible minister

The bill will not be passed because of the unwavering opposition by the crossbench and any preceding debate could be extremely embarrassing for your government because of the untoward and disingenuous information previously put out by Pitt and his department and its agencies being raised by the opposing senators

If Pitt then falls back on the existing legislation he will be subject to administrative and judicial and now because of the High Court decision earlier this month in the New Acland Coal case(1) will be completely stopped with his proposals if the opposing community at Kimba start their legal action since their situation is one real and not just apprehend bias as in that case

Should that litigation ensue then practically all written material held by the government in all its guises will be fully disclosed through the litigation procedure of discovery

From my limited personal knowledge of some of that material it will prove extremely embarrassing and your government will not be able to claim any privilege to prevent its disclosure

This is the view of several senior lawyers including some retired superior court judges but ask the attorney should you have any doubts

Perhaps the most pertinent aspect of the whole situation is the proposal for Kimba will in any event fail to get any of the necessary licences as ARPANSA is already being criticised for not carrying out its proper regulatory functions with respect to ANSTO and as a result the licence applications will be subject to an overseas peer review which will completely remove the licensing process from your government and its agencies

In any case ANSTO is already under a cloud due to its dismal performance and awkward responses at the Senate estimates hearing on 29 October 2020 which will I understand be subject to further extensive questioning and explanations

Please bear in mind that I was the source of the information for the questioning senators and the further questions to be asked due to the complete inadequacy of the responses by ANSTO to the notified questions(2)

I therefore suggest that you and Dean Smith as the government whips withdraw the bill before it becomes a further embarrassment to your government in a possible election year

With kind regards

Peter Remta

(1).    Oakey Coal Action Alliance Inv v. New Acland Coal Pty Ltd & Ors

High Court Case No.B34/2020

(2).    SENATE ECONOMICS LEGISLATION COMMITTEE Estimates

Hansard  THURSDAY  29 OCTOBER 2020

Senator Abetz pages 11 to 13 and Senator Carr pages 5 to 11

February 22, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Australian Government could face an unwinnable legal case if Senate passes the Kimba Nuclear Waste Dump Bill

This information would substantially reduce the need of a central facility for the lower level waste generated the various
sources outside of the government.
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While it is certainly regarded by international standards as desirable to have a centralised national or regional disposal facility for nuclear waste it comes down to the planning and nature of the facility and the government’s proposals in that regard are well short of the required standards.
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This is where the government completely falls down with its proposals for Napandee as it is clear that it will want the facility for other uses and the notion of a centralised facility is rather meaningless.
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From professional groups responsible for the removal of medical waste which has radioactivity as part of that waste from hospitals and other clinics and institutions it has confirmed as follows:
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1. There are in fact more than 300 locations with nuclear waste around Australia and not the figure of 100 or more constantly quoted by the federal government.
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2. The federal government entities have been constantly advised of their wrong figure but refuse to accept changing as over 100 locations is too entrenched in their planning and media releases.
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3. They have all been told that none of the holders of the waste will use the so-called central disposal facility now to be at Napandee despite so much technically fallacious and uninformative arguments by the government and its entities.
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4.The same applies to the contractor groups responsible for the removal and disposal of the radioactive medical waste who claim that the government’s proposals are unworkable and could lead to major liability issues due to safety issues.
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5. The government has been notified in writing that its concept for one national centralised facility has been badly planned and not anywhere as safe as claimed – in fact the government and its entities have been asked to withdraw their claims and express the concerns of the holders and the contractors but have refused to do so.

6. It will be interesting to see what documentary evidence and materials will emerge from discovery in any contemplated legal proceedings against the government.
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7. The foregoing information took some time to collate but again shows shows the disingenuity of the government in its various guises.

February 15, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Refuting claims about the ”medical necessity” for Kimba Nuclear Waste Dump

Sam Chard (InDaily 19 Feb) claims that :It is essential that The National Radioactive Waste Management Facility to be located at Kimba in South Australia.  It  is critical to Australian nuclear medicine that one in two Australians need to treat cancers and a range of other heart, lung and musculoskeletal conditions.
It is Absolute nonsense that the facility at Kimba is critical to nuclear medicine.

In what specific and fully explained way is the Kimba facility critical?

Nuclear medicine requirements in Australia are already being catered for adequately under present conditions and if additions are necessary they can be achieved without Kimba.
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Sam Chard goes on : –  The radioactive waste from nuclear medicine is currently spread over more than 100 locations across the country, at science facilities, universities and hospitals.   It needs to be consolidated into a purpose-built facility, where it can  be safely managed.

How can the consolidation be achieved since the federal government has no legal rights or control over the waste held at the  various locations throughout Australia?

From inquiries many of these will not use a federal government facility as proposed so the Kimba facility may be left taking only the government’s nuclear waste which includes that of intermediate level.
 
SAM CHARD was formerly the General Manager of the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility Taskforce at the
Department of Industry Science Energy and Resources but is now head of the recently established Australian Radioactive Waste Agency (ARWA)

February 15, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

In its rush for Kimba nuclear dump, Australian government tries to remove rights to legal recourse

February 13, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, legal | Leave a comment

Legal aspects of KIMBA  COMMUNITY OPPOSITION TO National Radioactive Waste Management Facility

KIMBA  COMMUNITY OPPOSITION TO National Radioactive Waste Management Facility

The decision by the High Court in the New Acland Coal case (1) was delivered only on Wednesday of last week but it is already creating a stir

In applying the rationale of that case to the Kimba situation the very marked difference is that its community members opposing the nuclear waste facility which is apparently made up of several groups including the Barngarla people suffered a much greater disadvantage than the objectors in the New Acland case as there was a real and actual bias at Kimba and not just an apprehension of bias 

This view has been expressed by several lawyers including retired judges to whom I spoke and it should be a very strong and decisive outcome which will mean that the government’s proposals for Kimba will be totally aborted

The other aspect of any litigation as to the Kimba situation is that all the information given by the government will now become subject to detailed scrutiny which will show up the the disingenuous statements by Pitt and the public servants involved including ANSTO and even ARPANSA

The same will apply to all the documents including internal minutes and notes which were either not previously disclosed or else highly redacted as they will have to be produced fully without the availability of any claim of privilege

I imagine that besides Pitt and Canavan being personally embarrassed it will make the government look silly and sneaky in its actions

I understand that the Kimba opponents are already considering an initial application to the Court to have their own impartial scrutiny and assessment of the government’s proposals to be paid for by the government

No wonder that lawyers are already queuing up to take this case on for the objectors as it should be an easy one with prolonged notoriety and no doubt with ultimately substantial costs against the government

Eat your heart out Erin Brockovich!

(1). Oakey Coal Action Alliance Inc v. New Acland Coal Pty Ltd & Ors

High Court Case No. B34/2020      Judgment:   3 February 2021

February 9, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Woomera site not chemically suitable for radioactive trash. Neither is Kimba.


Paul Waldon
– 8  Feb 21

The importance of maintaining a reducing chemical environment summarized by the authors of a MIT report as follows:
“In sitting a repository, it is important to select a geochemical and hydrological environment that will ensure the lowest possible solubility and mobility of the waste radionuclides. The geochemical conditions in the repository host rock and surrounding environment strongly affect radionuclide transport behavior. For example, several long-lived radionuclides that are potentially important contributors to long-term dose, including technetium-99 and neptunium-237, are orders of magnitude less soluble in groundwater in reducing environments than other oxidizing conditions.”
This report and a secondary geologic property recommendation by the IAEA state the importance of maintaining a reducing chemical environment, “Not” like that of the non-reducing environment of Woomera, where 9,980 drums of radioactive waste, void of rolling stewardship will continue to rust.
Moreover, the non-reducing environment of Kimba fails to tick the boxes recommended by MIT and IAEA, it’s true we don’t live in a reducing environment like that of Sweden the birth place of Dr Carl Magnus Larrson of ARPANSA but he should be adroit that we/he can not erode nuclear safety with approving translocation of ANSTO’s radioactive waste.

February 8, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Kimba Nuclear Waste Dump Bill yet again postponed in the Australian Senate

Kazzi Jai   No nuclear waste dump anywhere in South Australia 6 Feb 21, 
So…nothing happened regarding the Nuclear Dump Bill this week in the Senate.
The Senate will next meet on Monday 15th February 2021…and the Order of Business will be released just before that.
Will post when it becomes available.

February 5, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

High Court ruling a helpful precedent for opponents of Kimba nuclear dump

Peter Remta. 4 Feb 21, The High Court’s decision in the New Acland Coal Mine case (1) delivered by Justice James Edelman on Wednesday and based on the principle of “apprehended bias” should give great heart to all the community members in Kimba opposing the government’s proposed nuclear waste facility.

The background of the appeal is that a Queensland community group known as Oakey Coal Action Alliance and representing more than 60 local residents and landholders who opposed the proposed expansion of the New Acland Coal Mine on the basis that it would destroy otherwise productive agricultural land appealed to the High Court to stop the expansion.

In its unanimous decision delivered by Justice Edelman the High Court ruled that due to the way the original hearings had been conducted leading to previous decisions made by earlier courts favouring the coal mine expansion had been affected by apprehended bias with the result that the Action Alliance had not “had its day in court” and that it had not had the opportunity to present all of its arguments.

The rationale of the decision based on the principle of “apprehended bias” as stated by Justice Edelman in delivering the Court’s  decision was that

“these matters are insufficient to justify the highly exceptional course of this court refusing a rehearing for a party whose hearing was decided other than independently and impartially. Indeed, it cannot be said that Oakey Coal Action has “had its day in court” or had lost all of its grounds before an independent and impartial tribunal”.

The Action Alliance had been represented by the Environmental Defenders Office on the appeal to the High Court and the Kimba community members opposing the nuclear waste facility should immediately seek the assistance of the Public Defender on the basis of that appeal.

(1). Oakey Coal Action Alliance Inv v. New Acland Coal Pty Ltd & Ors

High Court Case No.B34/2020

This description of the appeal is partly based on the report in RenewEconomy by Michael Mazengarb on 3 February 2021

https://reneweconomy.com.au/author/ michael-mazengarb/

Additional reading:

The litigation against the New Acland Coal Mine involved a major and lengthy hearing in the Land Court of Queensland, followed by judicial review, a subsequent appeal and High Court challenge the history of which is extremely well described on the website of Environmental Law Australia .

This website is a free public service provided by Dr Chris McGrath, LLB (Hons), BSc, LLM, PhD, a barrister in Queensland practising in environmental law and an Adjunct Associate Professor in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Queensland.

http://envlaw.com.au/links/

 

February 5, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Resource Minister Pitt should withdraw the Bill as the process for a Kimba nuclear waste dump has failed

George Gear , 30 Jan 21, Reports have said that there is a possibility of a federal election this year. This means clearing the decks of issues that have the potential to embarrass the government or be a distraction.

One of these is the radioactive waste site at Kimba in SA.
The selection process for the radioactive waste facility project has now been going on for over 4 years.
The government’s bill to site the facility in Kimba will not pass the senate.

The proposed Kimba facility will not get a license to operate a radioactive waste facility as it does not meet
International Atomic Energy Agency standards of burial below ground. Australia is a founding member of the
IAEA. Their standards are our standards.

The minister will not declare Kimba because of the litigation that would follow will add years to the project. The
Barngarla traditional owners have been sidelined from the decision and will litigate. They have the resources to
do it with assets of $300M according to their Adelaide lawyers.

This will still be an issue at the next election unless it is settled. It is a major factor in SA where the government
has marginal seats. Press reports have opposition to the plan in SA at 70%.

Minister Pitt, in February, should announce that he respects the fact that the senate will not pass his bill and he
has decided to withdraw it. The cross bench have actually given the government a “get out of jail free” card. The
senate is now in control of the issue. I say that the government should take back control in the way I have
suggested.

At the same time he announces that negotiations with another nominee in the self selection process has begun.
Leonora did nominate in the process. No names at this point……..

The trouble with the process to date is that it hasn’t followed the science. The PM and Premiers did this with the
Corona Virus. The outcome is positive and they were all rewarded. The waste facility is not being ruled by science
which says that the waste has to be buried underground “at depths of twenty to hundreds of metres.” This
standard has been established by scientists.

The starting point should have been talking to the regulator to confirm the standards need to get a licence to
store the waste. This still hasn’t been done and has been left to the end of the process. Imagine if the bill had
passed the senate and the proposed facility on application to the regulator ARPANSA was refused a license. The
press would have had a field day at the governments expense.

February 1, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

The Australian government’s Radioactive Waste Bill does not meet required IAEA standards

Peter Remta, 30 Jan 21,  National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment (Site Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill
2020  I understand that Minister Pitt has brought on the bill for debate in the Senate on Thursday 4 February 2021 as he has been threatening the opposing senators that if the bill fails to pass it will become a trigger for the federal government to call early election by means of a double dissolution.
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He has also pointed out that a double dissolution would mean that most of the independent or cross bench senators would lose their seats While technically and constitutionally this course would be available to the government as a result of the failure to pass the bill it is highly unlikely that it would resort to follow it even if it believes that it would be successful in increasing its representation due to the present disarray within th parliamentary Labor Party.
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It is quite obvious that if the government were to avail itself of a double dissolution by virtue of this legislation not being passed I suggest that it could become a most embarrassing and inarguable exercise for it causing it to probably lose seats in both houses
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I understand from relatively reliable sources that internal polling by the parties in South Australia is suggesting that somewhere around 70% of the population is against the nuclear waste facility at Napandee or in fact elsewhere in the state. The polling also indicates that the sitting member for Grey Rowan Ramsey will most likely lose his seat due to his lack in popularity together with distrust over his conduct with regard to the nuclear waste facility proposals
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With this in mind I share the view of others that the government will not use the failure to pass the legislation as a trigger for a double dissolution election particularly as it is not an appropriate or generally nationally known issue on which to base an election
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What is more,  fighting any election on this issue would give rise to numerous information and arguments against the
establishment of the facility at Napandee which will only show up the inefficient and disingenuous conduct of the government and its agencies such as ANSTO and even ARPANSA.
Obviously on the present numbers the government could not rely on the passing of the legislation by a joint sitting of parliament prior to the double dissolution

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Below is the email message I sent out yesterday which includes in red my suggested draft for an amendment to the Labor
Party’s proposed amendment to the bill  The effect of this draft is to require such strict compliance with the codes and standards prescribed by the International Atomic Energy Agency that would be possible for the government to continue with establishing the facility

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However if the opposition and cross bench including the Greens Party continue to oppose the legislation then my draft amendment would be superfluous
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Draft amendment to revised amendment proposed by Senator Pratt: National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment (Site  Specification, Community Fund and Other Measures) Bill 2020 (7) Schedule 3, page 19 (after line 23), after item 3, insert:
3A Section 4Insert:
Joint Convention means the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste  Management, done at Vienna on 5 September 1997, as amended and in force for Australia from  at any time and includes without limitation the Safety Standards established or adopted by the International Atomic Energy Agency which provide the fundamental principles,requirements and recommendations to ensure nuclear safety for the purposes of among other things giving full effect to the Joint Convention.

February 1, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Kimba nuclear waste dump issue is in limbo in the Australian Senate

Friends of the Earth Adelaide  NO nuclear waste dump anywhere in South Australia 31 Jan 21,
Nuclear dump bill is in limbo in the Senate according to Senator Rex Patrick. Here’s a recent letter to a dump campaigner.
Dear Leon,
As requested during our phone call this morning I am sending you the information about the National Radioactive Waste Management Amendment in writing.
At this stage the Bill is somewhat in ‘limbo’. While it remains on the bills/legislation list, it is unlikely that the Government will bring it up for debate because it knows it doesn’t have the support required to get it passed. Labor, The Greens, Rex and One Nation have said they won’t support it so unless some of them backflip on their position it won’t get through. Currently there are 148 bills before Parliament, a few which were introduced back in 2017 and one even dating back in 2015. This indicates how long some of them have been in this ‘limbo’ state. If it is clear that the bill won’t move any further then it could end up falling into the ‘not proceeding’ category.
If this happens the Minister technically has the ability to simply declare Kimba as the site for the National Radioactive Waste Facility but going about it that way would leave the door open for legal cases to be brought against it.
Kind regards,
Kirsty Kubenk
Correspondence Officer
Office of Rex Patrick | Senator for South Australia https://www.facebook.com/groups/1314655315214929

February 1, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Resignation of Dr Adi Paterson from Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation- Australian government keeps mum.

Kazzi Jai  What was I thinking? Fight to Stop a Nuclear Waste Dump in South Australia, 22 Jan 21,
Have been waiting AGES for the Answers to Questions from the Senate Budget Estimates October 2020 regarding ANSTO and more importantly questions regarding Adi Paterson’s sudden resignation…..
Well – finally the Answers have been tabled. They are in a rather odd format to access (ie not easily user friendly), but finally the Answers I was specifically after were to Questions 85 to 90 inclusive.
And what do we get? ONE LINE ANSWERS EFFECTIVELY WITH NO CONTENT!
In hindsight, should I have been surprised? No.
Here is the link to the page for those interested anyway…..Toggle the Question number then Select the Question or Multiple Questions on the side of the page close to the bottom….. and then press download to view.

2020-2021 Budget estimates – Parliament of Australia  more https://www.facebook.com/groups/344452605899556

                            **************************************************
  1. Some examples of government answers to Senators’questions.

 Sen Kim Carr” (Question No 85) :  “Did Dr Paterson resign or was he asked to resign by the ANSTO board?

ANSWER. “There was no correspondence between the ANSTO Board and the Minister about Dr Paterson’s performance.”

Sen Kim Carr  (Question no. 87)  asked about correspondence between the board and Dr Adi Paterson.
ANSWER: “There is no written correspondence between the Board and Dr Paterson.

January 22, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

The nuclear dump for Kimba propaganda continues in 2021, (and jobs for the boys)

Kazzi Jai, Fight to Stop A Nuclear Waste Dump in South Australia, 22 Jan 21,
Seems trying to keep an “impression” that “things are still going ahead” when in fact THE SITE HAS NOT EVEN BEEN DECLARED YET, seems to be the order of the day!
So…. the very first announcement for 2021 by NRWMF is this!        
The Propaganda Train continues in 2021……
Oh, and fun fact of the day – Jim Haskett is the son of late Federal politician candidate Anthony Haskett who ran for the National Country Party in the early 1980’s in the seat of Grey.
Jobs for the boys?
A very warm welcome to ARWA’s Site Supervisor, Jim Haskett! Joining us this week in the Kimba office, …Jim is currently staffing the Kimba office (which has re-opened for 2021) with Maree to join him later this week.

January 22, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment