Australian news, and some related international items

Lucas Heights is the obvious place for a National Radioactive Waste Management Facility

Gary See Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, November 15  

ANSTO at Lucas Heights are supposedly short of space to keep radioactive waste, but they are literally next door to a landfill site that is near to being closed. Anyone know if they’ve ever considered building a National Radioactive Waste Management Facility  there?
It would seem a logical place for it.

Ed. note  The Australian Government has made sure to get this sewn  up.  The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) has licensed the Lucas heights campus of ANSTO to store nuclear wastes only on a TEMPORARY basis, and on condition that a plan is developed for “a final pathway” for its disposal.


November 17, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

High level nuclear wastes, planned for South Australia dumping, but not mentioned by Australian Government

Tim Bickmore Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA  November 15 

What the Barndioota Consultative Committee was presented in August 2017 regarding the nature of material storage in the proposed suppository. The guidelines (Waste Acceptance Criteria = WAC) are yet to be formalised, so we are expected to accept the unknown.
No reference to the decommissioned HIFAR & MOATA Reactors demolition waste – hunks of steel & concrete of unknown volume – & no mention of returned processed fuel.…/4.%20WAC%20presentatio…

November 17, 2017 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Federal radioactive waste in South Australia : three sites, two years, one message

  This week marks two years since the federal government announced its six shortlisted sites across Australia for the development of a National nuclear waste dump. Three of those sites were in South Australia and today both the Flinders Ranges and the Kimba agricultural region remain under threat.

The planned National Radioactive Waste Management Facility (NRWMF) project has been met with contest and concern from community members and state and national environment groups.

The waste issue is also set to be highlighted in the March state election with all SA politicians and hopefuls facing calls to explicitly back existing state legislation that makes any such dump illegal. Conservation SA was pleased to see an article in yesterday’s Australian newspaper disclosing Premier Jay Weatherill’s support for the Flinders Ranges community in their campaign against a radioactive waste dump in a letter to Prime Minister Turnbull urging him to respect Aboriginal opposition to the planned dump.

Regina McKenzie, Adnyamathanha Traditional Owner who lives next door to the Barndioota site and is a member of the Flinders Local Action Group (FLAG) said “The Liberal government’s plan is impacting the mental health and well being of the people in the Flinders Ranges and Kimba communities. We are happy that Premier Weatherill has opened his ears to us and is urging Malcolm Turnbull to do the same. For two years we have said no and we continue to say no.”

Kimba farmer Peter Woolford, chair of No Radioactive Waste on Agricultural Land In Kimba or SA, a group that formed around the issue, said “Two years on and the Commonwealth government continues to apply pressure to our small vulnerable community. The uncertainty, stress and toll this has taken on people within Kimba is immeasurable.

“Ministers and the Department of Industry, Innovation & Science state broad community support is critical for the facility, yet Kimba has continually been contested with strong opposition being maintained. The recent poll was clear that nearly half the community are opposed to siting a nuclear waste dump on farming land even with “disruption” money offered to communities to stay in the process.

“Current legislation in South Australia needs to be upheld and the Commonwealth should not ‘impose’ a national waste facility onto any unwilling community”, he said.

Radioactive waste dumps for non-SA wastes are illegal in SA. In response to earlier federal moves to dump waste in SA, state Parliament passed a law to say No: The Nuclear Waste Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000. This Act is “to protect the health, safety and welfare of the people of South Australia and to protect the environment in which they live by prohibiting the establishment of certain nuclear waste storage facilities in this state.”

The majority of Australia’s radioactive waste is currently securely stored at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation’s (ANSTO) site at Lucas Heights, in southern Sydney. ANSTO says it “is capable of handling and storing waste for long periods of time.” ANSTO produced the waste and they are best placed to manage it until a proper disposal approach is agreed. The current substandard plan does not meet world’s best practice and there is no need for short term approaches to this long term issue.

Mara Bonacci, Nuclear Waste Campaigner at Conservation SA said “The current process is flawed and divisive and targets vulnerable remote communities. In the two years since the six shortlisted sites were announced, the government has got no closer to securing a site. In fact, the site nomination process is still open.  The government has only succeeded in causing stress and division in the areas it has targeted. It is time to stop the clock and adopt an evidence based approach to waste management.

“The waste can and should remain secured and monitored at Lucas Heights until a dedicated public review of the full range of options for radioactive waste management is carried out. The focus needs to shift from targeting SA to establishing a fair, open and responsible process for the management of Australia’s most hazardous waste”, she concluded.


November 15, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Australian Aboriginal concerns will now be addressed in Scotland discussions on destination of reprocessed nuclear wastes

Herald 13th Nov 2017, ABORIGINES challenging proposals to dump nuclear waste from northern Scotland to a sacred Australian site have won a breakthrough meeting with
government officials about their concerns.

Wallerberdina, 280 miles north of Adelaide, has been identified as a potential location for Australia’s
first nuclear waste dump as part of a deal that returns spent fuel processed at the nuclear facility currently being decommissioned in Dounreay, Caithness, to its country of origin.

This is despite claims that it is a priceless heritage site rich in archaeological treasures including
burial mounds, fossilised bones and stone tools. Some have claimed the
impact would be similar to “building a waste dump at the heart of the

Campaigners who have appealed to the Scottish Government to halt
the plans to ship nuclear waste processed at Dounreay in Caithness to
Australia, have now been told that their concerns should be addressed
before any final decision is taken.

The Dounreay Waste Substitution Policy, agreed in 2012, sees waste from Australia, Belgium, Germany and Italy processed at the Scottish facility to make it safe for storage after being
returned to its country of origin. Campaigners have complained that the
intended South Australian destination forms part of an Aboriginal heritage
site rich in burial mounds, fossilised bones and stone tools.

November 15, 2017 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

South Australian government: local Aboriginal community has final veto on nuclear waste suppositary

Tim Bickmore shared ENuFF South Australia‘s post. No Nuclear Waste Dump Anywhere in South Australia, 13 Nov 17 

Oct 24 letter from SA Premier J to the PM regarding proposed radioactive waste suppository in the Flinders Ranges.
“….. the South Australian government committed to provide a local Aboriginal community with a final veto right over any future facility proposed on their lands.
I recommend the Commonwealth Government now consider adopting a similar policy position ….”

November 13, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Dean Johnson, Kimba mayor, ecstatic about Kimba getting Federal govt bribe for radioactive trash dump search

Make the most of the funding for Kimba  Eyre Peninsula Tribune Kathrine Catanzariti , 7 Nov 17 

November 8, 2017 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Nuclear fuel waste: Extended Storage at Lucas Heights or target SA?

The proposed Intermediate Level Waste Store is predominantly for ANSTO reactor wastes

Briefer (Nov 2017) by David Noonan, Independent Environment Campaigner   The Federal government has divided Australian community and is compromising safety in proposed import and indefinite above ground storage of ANSTO nuclear wastes in South Australia.

Since April 2016 the Federal government has solely targeted regional communities in SA for a proposed above ground Store to take irradiated Nuclear Fuel Waste (NFW) and long lived Intermediate Level Waste (ILW) from the ANSTO Lucas Heights reactor facility in NSW.

The ARPANSA CEO formally considered this proposed NRWMF Store and stated in May 2015:

“This plan will have the provision for ILW storage above ground for approximately 100 years.”

This nuclear waste storage plan compromises safety by importing long lived reactor waste to SA without any waste disposal capacity or even a program or plan for potential disposal of NFW and ILW. Safety requires these nuclear wastes are isolated from the environment for over 10,000 years.

The proposed 100 year Store in SA for 10,000 year nuclear wastes is a divisive, unsafe and unnecessary plan – given ANSTO’s capacity to retain these nuclear wastes at Lucas Heights.

Federal Contingency options to store Nuclear Fuel Wastes at Lucas Heights: Continue reading

November 1, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

ANSTO calls High Level Nuclear Waste – “Intermediate Level” – fooling the public

Steve Dale Nuclear Fuel Cycle Watch South Australia  21 Oct 17 Lest we forget. The ore we dig up from Roxby has a radioactivity of about 80 Becquerels per gram. The vitrified waste we received back from France has a radioactivity over one Billion Becquerels per gram (one GigaBq/gr). France considers this High Level Waste – but our political system has allowed this to be defined as “Intermediate” – incompetence? corrupt? I will let you decide. (image from…/2006_summar…/files/docs/all.pdf)

October 20, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, reference, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Australian govt changing electoral boundaries, in effort to get support for radioactive waste dump in South Australia?

Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA  
 Gayle Macey No! This has to be a State Referendum with no exclusion. This business of governments chanting boundaries etc, to hopefully give themselves a better chance of getting their own way, has to stop. Good luck with all of this.
 Sandra Hill Disgusting. Why don’t they find somewhere near Canbera. S.A is not their dumping ground!!

October 16, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics, South Australia | Leave a comment

Aborigines fight to block nuclear wastes from Scotland ending up dumped in rural South Australia

Australian Aborigines move to block shipments of Scottish nuclear waste 26 Sept 17,   ABORIGINES in South Australia are fighting a plan to ship nuclear waste from Scotland amid fears it will be dumped on land regarded as culturally and spiritually sacred.

Wallerberdina, around 280 miles north of Adelaide, has been earmarked as a possible location for Australia’s first nuclear waste dump despite claims that it is a priceless heritage site rich in archaeological treasures including burial mounds, fossilised bones and stone tools.

Some have claimed the impact would be similar to “building a waste dump at the heart of the Vatican”.

Now campaigners have appealed to the Scottish Government to halt controversial plans to ship nuclear waste processed at Dounreay in Caithness to Australia, amid concerns that it will eventually end up on the culturally sensitive land.

The waste transfer is part of a deal with saw spent fuel from nuclear reactors in Australia, Belgium, Germany and Italy processed at Dounreay – the nuclear facility in Caithness currently being decommissioned – to enable it to be safely stored after being returned to its country of origin.

The UK government has previously confirmed that “a very small quantity of Australian-owned radioactive waste” is currently stored in the country.

Scottish Government policy allows for the substitution of nuclear waste with a “radiologically equivalent” amount of materials from Sellafield in Cumbria.

The Herald understands that a shipment of such material is due to take place by 2020.

While the waste will be initially stored at a facility near Sydney, concern is growing that it could end up at Wallerberdina, one of two areas under consideration as a nuclear waste dump site.

As well as sparking anger over the site’s cultural and sacred connections, the proposed location has angered local people who still recall British atomic bomb tests in the area in the 1950s without permission from the affected Aboriginal groups.

Thousands were adversely affected with many Aboriginal people left suffering from radiological poisoning

Gary Cushway, a dual Australian/British citizen living in Glasgow, has now written to the First Minister asking that the Scottish Government review the agreement to transfer the material “until a satisfactory final destination for the waste is finalised by the Australian Government.”

He argues that doing so would allow the government to “take the lead in mitigating mistakes of the past that the UK government has made in regards to indigenous Australians.”

The proposed dump site is next to an Indigenous Protected Area where Aborigines are still allowed to hunt, and is part of the traditional home of the Adnyamathanha people, one of several hundred indigenous groups in Australia.





September 27, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Rural South Australia could end up with the curse of stranded nuclear wastes

Robyn Wood, Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 19 Sept 17

Greg of FLAG has a letter to the editor in today’s Advertiser for those who can get around the paywall

On the charge

HEAD of Resources Division, Department of Industry, Innovation and Science (DIIS), Bruce Wilson’s statement that “the federal Government is not pushing for a … National Radioactive Waste Management Facility to be hosted in SA” is not supported by the facts (“Nuke healing”, The Advertiser, 6/9/17).

Since the call for potential sites across Australia in March 2015, the process narrowed to focus on three, all in SA, two near Kimba and one near Hawker.

For over a year, DIIS staff have visited Hawker and Quorn almost weekly promoting the facility and answering questions.

A consultative committee meets monthly, a community liaison officer has been appointed and an economic working group has been formed. Newsletters appear regularly.

A delegation from Champagne in France, where there is a similar facility, has been presented praising the benefits of the facility to their region. Individuals and groups, including school students, have been funded to tour Lucas Heights.

In 2016, the federal Government allocated a $2 million community benefit package to Hawker. Another $2 million is promised this financial year with a similar allocation for Kimba, which will also have its own consultative committee and community liaison officer.

Mr Wilson’s letter emphasises the disposal of waste from the production and use of radioactive medical isotopes. He does not mention that the problematic intermediate level component of this waste can only be stored there on a temporary basis with no plan for its disposal.

Current state legislation, the Nuclear Waste Storage Facility (Prohibition) Act 2000, prohibits the storage in SA of the type of material proposed for this site.

GREG BANNON, Chair, Flinders Local Action Group, Quorn. more

September 20, 2017 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

ANSTO bosses support the global nuclear industry, not the well-being of Australians

Steve Dale Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 14 Sept 17,  From the document – “The ANM facility will enable ANSTO to triple its production of Mo-99, meeting domestic demand and up to 25-30 per cent of global demand.” and “The increase in production of nuclear medicines will also give rise to an increased volume of low and intermediate level waste.”
If we are meeting up to 25-30 % of global demand, then based on population, we are exporting the vast majority of this stuff while the tax payer, Australia , South Australia has to deal with the toxic legacy.
ANSTO should be dedicating their time to creating NO-WASTE solutions for nuclear medicine. Dollar signs and an urge for self preservation have blinded their thinking. I think the top people in ANSTO have placed the welfare of the global nuclear industry above the welfare of the Australian people.

September 16, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, health | Leave a comment



The Federal Government has released the shortlist of six sites for the location of a national radioactive waste dump.  Three of these sites are in South Australia.

Friends of the Earth Adelaide is cautious about the Federal Governments genuine commitment to a voluntary site nomination and selection process.

“The test will be how the government handles community opposition, how inclusive and transparent the site selection process will be, and how it will handle the issue of existing South Australian legislation banning the establishment of a nuclear waste dump,” said Nectaria Calan of Friends of the Earth Adelaide.

The National Radioactive Waste Management Act 2012, the Act governing the site selection process, over-rides existing state legislation prohibiting the establishment of a nuclear waste dump.

“Will the Federal Government impose a nuclear waste dump on states that have legislated against it, or communities that do not want it?” asked Ms Calan.

“The location of a waste dump cannot simply be decided through individual nominations,” said Ms Calan.  “It affects the wider community, particularly those in close proximity to the site.  Radioactive contamination knows no property boundaries.  The principle of voluntarism extends beyond the individual where an action has wider ramifications,” continued Ms Calan.

“There is yet to be an independent inquiry into all our radioactive waste management options, so the nominations process is premature,” said Ms Calan.

Additionally, here in South Australia the Royal Commission into the Nuclear Fuel Cycle is considering the feasibility of an international nuclear waste dump.

“Will a national nuclear waste repository in SA be the trojan horse for an international high level nuclear waste dump down the track?” asked Ms Calan.

“Rather than considering existing nuclear waste in Australia as an intractable problem, the SA government and some proponents of the nuclear industry seem to consider radioactive waste a business opportunity and want to import it, astounding given that so far globally there has been no success in establishing even one facility for the long term storage of high level waste.”

“ The one deep underground repository for intermediate level waste that does exist, the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) in New Mexico, saw an incident in February last year where a waste barrel exploded, leading to an aboveground release of airborne radiation, after only 15 years in operation,” said Ms Calan. “According to the US Department of Energy, twenty-two workers tested positive to low-level radiation exposure.”

Friends of the Earth Adelaide has serious concerns regarding the regulatory framework that may be applied to a nuclear waste dump in South Australia, whether national or international.

“BHP Billiton, operator of the Olympic dam mine, is exempt from key regulating legislation in SA, including the Freedom of Information Act, and parts of the Radiation Protection and Control Act and the Environmental Protection Act. With such a precedent here in SA for the regulation of the nuclear industry, where is the guarantee that other nuclear projects such as a nuclear waste dump would not also be exempt from laws regulating radiation, environmental protection, and transparency?” asked Ms. Calan.

September 11, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

South Australian responses to Federal Nuclear Waste Dump plan – Facebook

  Paul Waldon  Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA
8 Sept 17, ANSTO and DIIS are hedging ones bets on a chosen site while their agenda has always been to abandon High Grade waste under the guise of calling it Intermediate Waste.

Regina McKenzie I say No to nuclear waste dump in the Flinders Ranges or anywhere , the government says if there is a strong community movement against it , they will walk away . So why are they still hanging around Barndioota, Like blow flies on a shitty arse sheep? Honest they say one thing and do another , just a form of bullying from the Federal government, SA dont want No Nuclear Waste dump! Get over it and move on ….. We Say No!

Paul WaldonHow does your community make a small fortune gambling on nuclear waste? You start with a big fortune! The monkeys in the community happy to accept peanuts to risk contamination and death of their environment, maybe satisfied till things go wrong. But remember the culturally significant, seismically unstable, flood prone, non reducing, aquifer vulnerable, tourism missed, and peoples welfare are all issues that ANSTO, ARPANZA, and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science have all overlooked or have NO regard for, in their wrongful pursuit to ensure their own job security.

 Steve Dale They do it because they are drowning in a sea of nuclear muck of their own creation, and they want to keep creating nuclear muck for profit. They are drowning and they are desperate – and if we are not careful they will drag down everything good about South Australia with them.

Mark Gill A big question to be answered is WHY??….
Gets sent here for REHAB.. 200,000YRS .


Paul Waldon  September 7 regional news, reports Broken Hill in the grip of a tourism boom, and things are looking rosy. While ANSTO and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science are busy promoting South Australia as a “Nuclear Dump.” There is no Cupie Doll, as a prize for the person who can guess who prospers and what state goes down the toilet.

September 9, 2017 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Fragile ecosystem of the Flinders Ranges – threatened by nuclear waste dumping

Paul Waldon  Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA Yesterday,Thursday the 7th of September was Threatened Species Day. The promotion of nuclear waste abandonment in the Flinders Ranges by The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science (DIIS), and ANSTO can only be seen as a irresponsible act pushing life to extinction with a radioactive assault on a incompatible and fragile environment, while threatening the taxon and the biotas of the Flinders Ranges.

MAMMALS: One species of mammal, the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby (Petrogale Xanthopus), has a national and state conservation rating of “Vulnerable.” Half of all mammal fauna that was once known for the Flinders are now extinct, with surviving species assessed at a regional level, with 15 rated “Vulnerable”, 2 “rare”, 7 “Uncommon” and 6 listed “Immediate Conservation Concern”, while the vulnerable will require focused management to ensure their long term future.
BIRDS: 15 birds species are listed a South Australian Conservation Rating, 7 rated “Vulnerable”, 4 as “Rare”, 4 as “Uncommon”, 1 the Short-tail Grass-wren (Amytornis Merrotsyi) listed as Endemic, significantly near Hawker.
REPTILES: Several species are near “Endemic” to the Flinders Ranges, and 5 species known in the region have “Conservation ratings.”
PLANTS: 18 Plant taxa are “Endemic” to the Flinders Ranges, some of these are locally very common, while others are more sparsley present, and have conservation significance ratings. No less than 221 plant species have conservation rating of the 1361 plant taxa recorded.
This well balanced fragile ecosystem, may collapse with the death of any taxa or biota that suffer the impact of radiation from nuclear waste abandonment. ANSTO at Lucas Heights offers a low environmental impact site for nuclear waste while Hawker and Kimba fail to deliver, and in the interest of safety, radioactive waste should remain at Lucas Heights

September 8, 2017 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment