Archive for the ‘wastes’ Category

Australian government’s hypocrisy in targeting South Australia for nuclear waste dump, shown up by Western Australian private offer

June 14, 2018

David Noonan, 13 June 18, Senator Rex Patrick has shown up the hypocrisy of the Federal Government in its expensive frenzy to foist a nuclear waste dump on rural South Australia. And in instigating the Senate Inquiry into this process, has set in motion the discrediting of the whole National Radioactive Waste Management Facility sham.

However, the propaganda by Western Australian private company Azark is not reliable, either. There is indigenous opposition to nuclear waste dumping in the Leonora region,Western Australia.  Western Australia’s Labor government may not support Azark’s low level waste dump plan, may have its own plan for WA.s radioactive waste. This WA private offer is for low level waste disposal and is not for the Fed govt proposed above ground 100 year Store for 10,000 yr nuclear fuel wastes and long lived intermediate level wastes.

This  exposes Federal govt’s plan to have two dumps in one, to “co-locate” a long lived waste Store’ along side a low level disposal site. It exposes their priority to dump Federal govt owned long lived nuclear wastes at an above ground “stranded wastes” dump in regional South Australia.

South Australia nuclear waste site a “done deal: claims Senator Rex Patrick https://www.adelaidenow.com.au/business/sa-business-journal/sa-nuclear-waste-site-a-done-deal-senator-rex-patrick/news-story/08524bb4dc5004f467462b1591a55b1f, The Advertiser, Erin Jones, Regional Reporter,   June 13, 2018 

Centre Alliance senator Rex Patrick told The Advertiser the decision to establish a low-level facility at one of two sites in South Australia appeared to be a “done deal” following the revelation.

In August, Azark Project made a nomination to include the commercial operation of an underground storage facility, near the remote central mining town of Leonora, north of Kalgoorlie.

The South Australian senator, who visited Leonora, said the proposal appeared to have “considerable support” and unlike the two SA sites near Kimba and Hawker, did not need taxpayer funds to proceed.

“Resources Minister Matt Canavan needs to properly engage the proponents of the proposed site near Leonora or risk the whole selection process being confirmed as an absolute sham,” he said.

“It appears as though the new site is a ‘faster runner’ in the race, but won’t be allowed to participate because the Minister is determined to rush to select one of the South Australian sites despite there being a divided community.”

Azark Project chairman George Gear said the WA site had no environmental, land rights or water issues, and the proposal had support of the 2900 people in Leonora Shire.

Mr Gear said he had no confidence in the specially-formed government taskforce considering sites for the waste facility, given Leonora was not on the table.

“Apart from this being a superior site located in a mining area and in solid rock, this wouldn’t cost the taxpayer any money as it’s a private company that will build this,” Mr Gear, a former minister in the Keating government, said.

“The taskforce to date has either spent or committed $40 million and they haven’t finalised the project.

“Azark has completed all of its due diligence at its own cost and has offered to make it available to the taskforce — this invitation was not accepted.”

Mr Gear said Azark Project had decided to pursue the plan on its own, but was expected to meet Mr Canavan in Perth, today.

The Government is expected to decide in coming months whether to build the waste facility in SA, after a final ballot of Kimba and Hawker districts, on August 20.

Mr Canavan has previously said “broad community support” would be needed for the waste facility to go ahead — although no arbitrary figure has been provided.

The two-year site selection process has divided both communities — those in favour believe it would create economic opportunities, while those opposed say it will jeopardise industries.

The district where the waste facility is located would be rewarded by the government with a $10 million community fund to spend on local projects.

Both districts were already benefiting from a $4 million grants fund as a reward for being involved in the site selection process.

Senator Patrick this year successfully pushed for a Senate inquiry into the site selection process used for the national waste facility and an outcome is expected only days before the ballot, on August 14.

In a submission to the inquiry, Kimba’s mayor said more information on financial rewards and jobs was needed before the community voted in the ballot.

Mr Canavan did not respond to questions before deadline.

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At long last – a remediation plan for Ranger Uranium Mine within Kakadu National Park, but will it work?

June 6, 2018

Northern Land Council, 5 June 2018     The Northern Land Council and Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation welcome today’s public release of the Ranger Mine Closure Plan by Energy Resources of Australia. The plan is decades overdue and critical to the company meeting the objectives of rehabilitation.

The NLC and GAC, representing the Mirarr Traditional Aboriginal Owners of the mine site, will now review the plan and engage with stakeholders as part of the approval process. While not part of a public environmental impact statement process, the public release of the plan does provide the broader community with an opportunity to comment on the plan to the Australian government.

The Mine Closure Plan is of a very high level and even though Ranger’s closure is imminent, a significant amount of detailed planning and supporting studies remain outstanding. ERA and its parent company Rio Tinto must clearly demonstrate that they have sufficient resources devoted to mine closure to provide stakeholders with confidence that the objectives outlined in the closure plan can be met.

The Ranger plan remains unenforceable until it is approved by the federal Minister for Resources. The mine’s operational life must cease by January 2021, ahead of five years’ rehabilitation. The future of Aboriginal communities downstream of the mine and the World Heritage listed values of Australia’s largest national park are at stake.

ERA and Rio Tinto’s rehabilitation obligations include remediation of the site such that it can be incorporated in the surrounding Kakadu National Park. The final determination as to whether the area can be incorporated into the World Heritage area sits with the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, on advice from its expert advisory bodies the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS).

NLC contact: Martha Tattersall 0427 031 382 GAC contact: Kirsten Blair 0412 853 641

http://gac-v3.katalyst.com.au/media/W1siZiIsIjIwMTgvMDYvMDQvM3plYWpidjJ1al8yMDE4MDQwNl9HQUNfTkxDX3JlX0VSQV9SVU1fTUNQXzVfSnVuZV8yMDE4LnBkZiJdXQ/20180406%20GAC%20NLC%20re%20ERA%20RUM%20MCP%205%20June%202018.pdf

Unscientific, sloppy -that’s the Australian government’s process for selecting a nuclear waste dump!

May 29, 2018

Image courtesy  Kim Mavromatis

Kim Mavromatis No Nuclear Waste Dump Anywhere in South Australia, 28 May 18  The Federal Government  National Nuclear Waste Dump Selection Process for South Australia is like a B-grade horror movie plot.

Australian Federal Liberal Government’s Land Selection Criteria for a National Radioactive Nuclear Waste Dump proposed for South Australia :

· Nothing scientific about the land selection process – anyone can nominate their land, including Pro-Nuclear Ex-Federal Liberal politicians – and get paid 4 times what it’s worth.

· Doesn’t matter where the land is located.

· Don’t worry about your neighbours – their land will appreciate in value with a toxic radioactive Nuclear Waste Dump next-door.

· The majority of Aboriginal people, who say NO to a Nuclear Waste Dump, will be given the same amount of respect they received during British Nuclear testing at Maralinga and Emu Fields.

· Doesn’t matter if the region is a national icon and major tourism attraction.

· Don’t worry about seismic activity or if the area is prone to flooding.

· Doesn’t matter if the land nominated is in an important grain-growing region.

· Doesn’t matter that building a Nuclear Waste Dump facility in South Australia is against the law.

· You can trust politicians to keep their word – once in place the Nuclear Waste Dump won’t get changed from an Intermediate to High-Level Nuclear Waste Dump.

· Special Note : the new South Australian Premier Steven Marshall and the state Liberals said No to a Nuclear Waste Dump before the election.

· Most of the state won’t have a say in the Clayton’s consultation process – community support will only be solicited within a 50km radius of the Nuclear Waste Dump – and 2 million carrots will help bribe the locals.

· Don’t worry about Nuclear Waste accidents – there won’t be any and they won’t be catastrophic. It’s not irresponsible to ship nuclear waste half way across the country through populated Australian cities and towns, on busy public roads and highways, on ships and trains – no safety concerns – livelihoods won’t be lost – property values dive – who pays the insurance? – nothing to see here, move along.

· The Nuclear Waste Dump will be in operation for 100 years and monitored for 200-300 years, but don’t worry that Intermediate-Level Nuclear Waste can remain highly radioactive for 100,000 years and can be as hazardous as High-Level Nuclear Waste.

· Don’t worry that the temporary canisters holding the Nuclear Waste above ground are temporary because nothing is permanent.

· In 60 years, the nuclear industry hasn’t found a solution for Nuclear Waste, but she’ll be right mate, they’ll find a solution in the next 60 years.

· The Nuclear Waste Dumps proposed for South Australia are located near Kimba (Eyre Peninsula grain-growing region), 75kms from the Spencer Gulf coastline – and in the Flinders Ranges near Hawker (national icon and major tourism attraction), 29kms from Lake Torrens and 84kms north of Port Augusta.

Q&A

Q: Once in place how easy is it for politicians to change an Intermediate-Level Nuclear Waste Dump into a High-Level Nuclear Waste Dump?
A: Very easy.

Q: How long does it take High-Level Nuclear Waste to become harmless?
A: It never becomes harmless.

Q: Compare High-level Nuclear Waste (spent nuclear fuel) Radioactivity to Uranium ore?
A: After 30 years, High-Level Nuclear Waste is 10,000x more radioactive than uranium ore – after 140 yrs, 1,000x more radioactive – after 2,000 yrs, 100x more radioactive – after 43,000 yrs, 10x more radioactive – after 10 million yrs, same radioactivity as uranium ore (NWMO Nuclear Waste Management Org, Canada). https://www.facebook.com/groups/1314655315214929/

Environmental Defenders Office shows up flaws in Australian Government’s report on nuclear waste siting

May 26, 2018

With all of the proposed sites there was strong opposition to moving onto phase 2 of the process. The two preferred sites chosen, both in South Australia, also had strong opposition, but the strong opposition was slightly less that the other three sites. Slightly less opposition cannot amount to ‘broad community support’.

Barndioota site:

The Phase 1 summary report also states that 65% of those surveyed were in support of progressing to stage 2. From our assessment of the raw data, this figure is incorrect. The data shows a figure of 51% of those surveyed being opposed to progressing to stage 2.3 Additionally, there was almost unanimous indigenous opposition to this site.

The Kimba site does not meet the Government’s criteria as having ‘broad community support’ and needs to be abandoned as a potential national radioactive waste facility

All Australians should have the right to have a say on this issue. Furthermore communities along any transport routes need to be informed of the risks and consulted in relation to the proposed sites before any site is chosen. This is an essential part of ascertaining support for the project .

 

Environmental Defenders Office. Melissa Ballantyne Coordinator/Solicitor Environmental Defenders Office (SA) Inc.   Submission to the Senate Committee Inquiring into Site Selection for the National Nuclear Waste Facility (Submission No. 43) 

The Environmental Defenders Office (SA) Inc (“the EDO”) is an independent community legal centre with over twenty-five years of experience specialising in environmental and planning law. EDO functions include legal advice and representation, law reform and policy work and community legal education. The EDO appreciates the opportunity to provide a submission to this Inquiry, which is seeking comment on a number of Terms of Reference.

The EDO submission relates to the following terms of reference: “The Government has stated that it will not impose such a facility on an unwilling community, with particular reference to:

.b) how the need for ‘broad community support’ has played and will continue to play a part in the process, including:

  1. The definition of ‘broad community support’ and ii) how ‘broad community support’ has been or will be determined for each process advancement stage …………..e) whether wider (Eyre Peninsular or state-wide) community views should be taken into consideration and, if so, how this is occurring or should be occurring; …….” 1. Broad community support

The government’s commitment that it will not impose such a facility on an unwilling community raises the question of how to determine broad community support. If this is not forth coming, then we have an unwilling community and the proposed sites cannot be supported.

Five potential sites were shortlisted and following shortlisting, the government embarked on a consultation process. There were 2 sites in South Australia, one in each of the NT, Qld and NSW. The public consultation processes in relation to the five proposed sites seem to be in compliance with best practice consultation processes, according to the government reports.

However, our clients from the two South Australian communities argue that the consultation processes have not complied with best practice from the IAP2 public participation spectrum.1 Essential elements include wide participation, ability to participate effectively and access to and ability to understand relevant information in order to be able to make submissions in relation to the proposals. We believe the processes here fall short of these requirements

1
International Association for Public Participation https://www.iap2.org/

Additionally, the conclusions drawn from these processes, in our opinion, fall short of ‘broad community support’.

What is ‘broad community support’?

The criteria for moving forward with any of the proposed sites is ‘broad community support’. According to the World Bank Group, broad community support is required in cases where the business activity to be financed is likely to generate potential significant adverse impacts on communities or is likely to generate potential adverse impacts on indigenous peoples. In those cases, IFC clients are required to engage in a process of Informed Consultation and Participation (ICP).2

With all of the proposed sites there was strong opposition to moving onto phase 2 of the process. The two preferred sites chosen, both in South Australia, also had strong opposition, but the strong opposition was slightly less that the other three sites. Slightly less opposition cannot amount to ‘broad community support’.

We are concerned that these participation processes do not imply a predetermined outcome namely obtaining rather than seeking broad community support.

a) Barndioota site:

There were only 36 submissions received regarding this site, out of a total adult population of 1331. This is a very small number and is of concern in terms of a proper consultation process. Comparing this to the other SA site, in Kimba where there were 582 submissions out of an adult population of 833. More work would need to be done before the government could conclude that they have ‘broad community support’ in relation to this site.

The Phase 1 summary report also states that 65% of those surveyed were in support of progressing to stage 2. From our assessment of the raw data, this figure is incorrect. The data shows a figure of 51% of those surveyed being opposed to progressing to stage 2.3 Additionally, there was almost unanimous indigenous opposition to this site.

Recommendation 1:

An independent cultural heritage assessment be undertaken before the next stage is proceeded with. If indigenous opposition continues, this site is no longer to be considered as a potential site.

2 World bank Group ‘Engaging Citizens for Better Development Results’ An IEG Evaluation of World bank Group Citizen Engagement,
April, 2017, 4
3
Department of Industry, Science and Innovation National Radioactive Waste Management Facility, Community
Sentiment Survey, Wave 2 Report of Findings, April 2016, p57

Recommendation 2:

Revisit the consultation process to ensure effective participation from the community and consider extending it to become a nationwide consultation. The reason for the small number of submissions needs to be investigated and rectified before the ‘broad community support’ criteria can be said to have been achieved.

b) The Kimba site:

In the Kimba site consultation findings, the report says

“The sites received 582 submissions4 throughout the consultation period, of which 67 per cent were a standardised letter stating opposition to the nominations. Of the total number of submissions, only around 20 per cent were supportive of the proposal. The diverse views in the submissions largely reflected the views expressed in the community consultation processes.

A petition was received regarding the Cortlinye and Pinkawillinie5 nominations with 880 signatures opposing the facility.6 ”

Yet the report continues with ‘there is an encouraging base of support for moving forward to the next stage (around 51 per cent)’7 and that ‘a substantial proportion of the community (42 per cent) is strongly opposed.’

Referring to this as an encouraging base of support in light of the rest of the Report is at best, optimistic and at worst, misleading, in that 49 percent (or more) are opposed to moving forward to the next stage.

There is inconsistency in the conclusions based on the consultation process but whichever way it is read, it cannot be stated that there is ‘broad community support’ in Kimba. At best there may be some community support.

Recommendation 3:

The Kimba site does not meet the Government’s criteria as having ‘broad community support’ and needs to be abandoned as a potential national radioactive waste facility

4
According to the Phase 1 Summary Report, p.9, the adult population of Kimba is 880 people.
5
These combined to be referred to as Kimba
6
Phase 1 Summary Report, p.15
7
Para 4.2.6

In addition we have received relevant information from the Flinders Local Action Group ( FLAG), a not for profit group of concerned local residents. Between September and November 2016 FLAG undertook a community survey in two parts. The question asked was:

“Do you want a National Radioactive Waste Management Facility established at Wallerberdina Station/Barnidoota?

With the first survey 92% voted no and with the second survey 79% voted no.

Whether wider community views should be taken into consideration. The process to ascertain community views is of vital importance and must be done according to best practice.

The process and decision by the Federal Government is in our view of interest and importance to citizens across Australia. It should be noted that the community has no rights to challenge the merits of a decision made under the relevant legislation.

A further matter here is the safety of transport routes. This issue was raised in relation to the Sally’s flat site in NSW which is discussed in the Phase 1 Summary report from April 2016. One of the key findings was the proximity to Lucas Heights, from where the waste would be transported.8

The cradle to grave waste framework provides that waste be disposed of where it is produced. This minimises the risk involved in transporting waste and puts responsibility onto the manufacturer. This waste should be disposed of at or near to Lucas Heights. Failing this, an assessment of the risks of transporting the waste needs to be undertaken and all communities on these transport routes be consulted with in order for their consent to be obtained before a proposed site for the nuclear waste is chosen.

Recommendation 4:

All Australians should have the right to have a say on this issue. Furthermore communities along any transport routes need to be informed of the risks and consulted in relation to the proposed sites before any site is chosen. This is an essential part of ascertaining support for the project .

David Noonan: No sound reason for ANSTO’s nuclear reactor wastes to go to Kimba South Australia as STRANDED WASTES

May 12, 2018

The proposed above ground Store in SA is primarily for ANSTO nuclear wastes

It is axiomatic that site selection at Kimba will require requisition of an Eyre Peninsula Port for decades of intended shipments of ANSTO nuclear fuel waste, first due from the UK in circa 2020-21.

The SA Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission (2016) concluded that terrorist attack scenarios are conceivable during the transport of nuclear fuel wastes & that if a cask was lost at sea and was irrecoverable the radioactivity that escapes is expected to affect thousands of cubic km of seawater.

ANSTO has produced irradiated nuclear fuel wastes & Intermediate Level Wastes at Lucas Heights for 60 years without any nuclear waste disposal capacity (or even a program to do so) and intends to continue this mal-practice for another 40 years under an OPAL reactor Operating License up to 2057.

It is an untenable fact that the proposed nuclear fuel waste Store in SA is intended to operate “above ground for approx. 100 years”, however responsible management of ANSTO irradiated nuclear fuel wastes requires isolation from the environment for 10,000 years.

A Store in SA is unnecessary given the safe option of Extended Storage at Lucas Heights

This Inquiry should find no manifest need for a nuclear waste Store in SA other than Federal agenda. There is no Safety, Licensing or technical reason to bring these nuclear wastes to SA.

the Federal Minister holds a draconian discretion under the National Radioactive Waste Management Act 2012 (NRWMA) to over-ride both Federal and State Aboriginal Heritage Acts.

Ending the process now is far preferable to “a final right of veto” which forces Aboriginal people through to the end of a divisive demanding site selection process that is harming their community.

An immediate adjoining property to the proposed NRWMF siting in the Flinders is an Indigenous Protected Area, a part of the National Reserve System that is supposed to be under Federal protection. AND the proposed sites and the broader area are part of a precedent registered Story

Line, values that must be respected, under the protection of the SA Aboriginal Heritage Act 1988

However: the Federal Minister holds a draconian discretion under the National Radioactive Waste Management Act 2012 (NRWMA) to over-ride both Federal and State Aboriginal Heritage Acts.

This ERC Inquiry should recognise that Aboriginal people’s ‘voice must be heard and their consent is essential’ as a core part of “broad community consent” and make a Finding that NRWMF siting on Adnyamathanha country in the iconic Flinders Ranges is inappropriate and must stop forthwith.

 

David J Noonan B.Sc., M.Env.St. Independent Environment Campaigner . Submission to Senate Economics References Committee Inquiry “Selection process for a national radioactive waste management facility in SA” (Submission No. 31)

RE: Flaws in site selection process, inappropriate indefinite storage floats best practice, failure to follow essential Nuclear Safety Committee advice, and serious threat to human & cultural rights.

Dear Secretary Please accept this public submission & consider my request to appear as a Witness at this Inquiry

This submission focuses on the “appropriateness and thoroughness of the site selection process” & associated matters for the proposed National Radioactive Waste Management Facility (NRWMF).

Specifically: on inappropriate Siting of a proposed indefinite above ground Store for primarily ANSTO irradiated nuclear fuel wastes & long lived Intermediate level reactor wastes in regional SA.

An Executive Summary and a few public interest & Safety Questions for this Inquiry to consider under your Terms of Reference are provided – along with an offer to expand on points raised.

Over the last two full years the Federal government has solely targeted regional communities in SA to site the nuclear waste Store & associated required nuclear Port and waste transport routes.

In doing so, the Federal process is unacceptably inadequate (rather than thorough) in failing to follow essential advice of the Nuclear Safety Committee to the regulator ARPANSA (NSC advice to the CEO, Nov 2016) on the NRWMF: for transparency in decisions and for “The ongoing requirement to clearly and effectively engage all stakeholders, including those along transport routes.”

My submission to the Minister (May 2017) on his decision under the National Radioactive Waste Management Act 2012 to assess two sites near Kimba as potential sites for the proposed NRWMF raised a range of issues that have not been thoroughly addressed since (see Attachment 1).

I request opportunity to appear as a Witness to provide evidence at a Hearing of this Inquiry, and was a Witness as an individual on nuclear waste issues at the SA Parliament Joint Committee Inquiry on the Findings of the Nuclear Royal Commission, held in 2016. (more…)

Sisters of St Joseph say: Terms of Reference for Senate Inquiry on Nuclear Waste Dumping are ‘grossly inadequate”

May 10, 2018
Others however do not consider that the financial risks are adequate. Their concerns  have been articulated in community discussions:
• The loss of value to the spectacular tourist lands of the Flinders ranges
• The damage to farming country near Kimba
• The harm to below surface water tables
• The adverse effect on the prices of livestock and crops, caused by proximity to radioactive waste
• The adverse effect on the prices of land adjoining the site
• The fear that the Commission’s case for a nuclear making a profit is based on inflated estimates of the income and deflated estimates of the costs and risks
The sites near Kimba are in a productive agricultural region. This is in conflict with the National Health and Medical Research Council’s Code of Practice on radioactive waste, which states that radioactive waste disposal sites should have “little or no potential for agriculture” 

The question for all of us must be faced. What sort of planet will our children, grand children and great grand children inherit, if this land is used in the way proposed by the Government?

Josephite Justice Office, North Sydney NSW 2060,  Submission to Senate Inquiry SELECTION PROCESS FOR A NATIONAL RADIOACTIVE WASTE MANAGEMENT FACILITY IN SOUTH AUSTRALIA Contact Jan Barnett rsj  (Submission No. 68)

INTRODUCTION
This submission is presented on behalf of the Josephite Justice Office, a ministry of the Congregations of the Sisters of St Joseph. The Sisters of St Joseph and our Associates (numbering approximately three thousand women and men) were founded in the mid-nineteenth century by Mary MacKillop and Julian Tenison Woods to work with those suffering from poverty and social disadvantage. We educate, advocate and work for justice, for earth and people, especially those pushed to the margins.

We commend this Inquiry into the siting of national radioactive waste management facility (NRWMF) at Kimba and Hawker. It is particularly encouraging to note that the Government has stated unequivocally that it will not impose such a facility on an unwilling community. The controversy surrounding the siting of a NRWMF in any area of Australia over recent years indicates the strength of feeling and the contradictory evidence being argued. It is our belief that until these arguments can be resolved, then even the specific terms of reference nominated for the Inquiry will be grossly inadequate.
Given that context, this submission will nonetheless address the terms of this Inquiry, focussing on both the appropriateness and thoroughness of the site selection process at this stage.

PURPOSE OF CONSULTATION

Six specific terms of reference have been named by the committee:

1. the financial compensation offered to applicants for the acquisition of land under the Nominations of Land Guidelines;

 2. how the need for ‘broad community support’ has played and will continue to play a part in the process, including:
a. the definition of ‘broad community support’, and
b. how ‘broad community support’ has been or will be determined for each process advancement stage;
Selection process for a national radioactive waste management facility in South Australia
Submission 68

3. how any need for Indigenous support has played and will continue to play a part in the process, including how Indigenous support has been or will be determined for each process advancement stage;

4. whether and/or how the Government’s ‘community benefit program’ payments affect broad community and Indigenous community sentiment;

5. whether wider (Eyre Peninsular or state-wide) community views should be taken into consideration and, if so, how this is occurring or should be occurring;
and
6. any other related matters.

THE FINANCIAL COMPENSATION OFFERED TO APPLICANTS FOR THE ACQUISITION OF LAND UNDER THE NOMINATIONS OF LAND GUIDELINES

The two sites being actively considered are Barndioota, near Hawker in the iconic Flinders Ranges, and two sites on farming land near Kimba on the Eyre Peninsula.

A number of residents who have been offered compensation believe that the amount is satisfactory. Others however do not consider that the financial risks are adequate. Their concerns  have been articulated in community discussions:
• The loss of value to the spectacular tourist lands of the Flinders ranges
• The damage to farming country near Kimba
• The harm to below surface water tables
• The adverse effect on the prices of livestock and crops, caused by proximity to radioactive waste
• The adverse effect on the prices of land adjoining the site
• The fear that the Commission’s case for a nuclear making a profit is based on inflated estimates of the income and deflated estimates of the costs and risks

THE WAY THAT THE NEED FOR ‘BROAD COMMUNITY SUPPORT’ HAS PLAYED AND WILL CONTINUE TO PLAY A PART IN THE PROCESS, INCLUDING:
• The definition of ‘broad community support’, and
• How ‘broad community support’ has been or will be determined for each process advancement stage;

There is a clear need for broad community support. Consultation has occurred, but as has been acknowledged, only across a small sample of people and communities. The
positioning of a radioactive plant is of broad community concern and necessitates comprehensive community support – defined as support of those living in the immediate

area, but also of the wider community whose lives and reputation will be affected by the placement of the plant. How this can be determined at each stage of the process is questionable, given the current tensions in the areas concerned.

• Communities in both Kimba and the Flinders Ranges have highlighted the damage and division the plan has caused among families and life-long friends

• The sites near Kimba are in a productive agricultural region. This is in conflict with the National Health and Medical Research Council’s Code of Practice on radioactive waste, which states that radioactive waste disposal sites should have “little or no potential for agriculture”
• The current attitude of ‘not in my back yard’ across the wider Australian community indicates a lack of broad community support, which needs to be tested across South Australia
• There is no doubt that the location of Ansto at Lucas Heights affects the purchasing price of land and the standing of the suburb in the minds of people considering where they might live
• The deep fear that there could be a failure of protection for residents continue to concern residents, despite assurances that radioactive waste facilities are designed with numerous layers of protection.
WHETHER AND/OR HOW THE GOVERNMENT’S ‘COMMUNITY BENEFIT PROGRAM’ PAYMENTS AFFECT BROAD COMMUNITY AND INDIGENOUS COMMUNITY SENTIMENT; 
Questions have been asked as to whether the degree of backing for the ‘community benefit program’ comprises support for the project itself or support for the funding. Regardless of such motivation however, community support is questionable, and Indigenous community sentiment is negative.
• The site in the Flinders Ranges is on Adnyamathanha country and many Adnyamathanha Traditional Owners are opposed to the possible plant and concerned that the dump will negatively impact on their country
• The Flinders Ranges is a world-renowned destination. The Sisters of St Joseph believe that many South Australians are concerned about the potential negative impact on this spectacular land, sacred to the Indigenous People and beloved to many other Australians, an impact that outweighs any community benefit program and any financial package and jobs being offered by the federal government
THE WAY THAT THE NEED FOR INDIGENOUS SUPPORT HAS PLAYED AND WILL CONTINUE TO PLAY A PART IN THE PROCESS, INCLUDING HOW INDIGENOUS SUPPORT HAS BEEN OR WILL BE DETERMINED FOR EACH PROCESS ADVANCEMENT STAGE 
The siting of a NRWMF at Kimba and Hawker is seen by many Indigenous Australians as a lack of respect for the First Nations Peoples and their land. Aboriginal communities in South Australia suffered British nuclear weapons testing in the 1950’s and 1960’s, and continue to suffer health and social impacts from these tests. The proposed facility is seen as further disregard and destruction, a permanent imposition on country, people, laws, environment and culture. Past experiences indicate that Indigenous support will be difficult to receive, and that at each advancement stage, further polarisation of both Indigenous and other communities will occur. From Elders in the South Australian communities to young people now speaking out, many generations are resistant of a NRWMF.
 WHETHER WIDER (EYRE PENINSULA OR STATE-WIDE) COMMUNITY VIEWS SHOULD BE TAKEN INTO CONSIDERATION AND HOW THIS IS OCCURRING OR SHOULD BE OCCURRING
There is no doubt that broad and much wider community views should be taken into consideration. The siting of the facility in South Australia affects not only the communities of Hawker and Kimba, but also the surrounding areas, and indeed the whole of the state and beyond.
 • It is known that ultimately, in spite of every precaution, there is no safe level of exposure to ionising radiation, and that any exposure can result in negative health outcomes. Exposure can occur at any stage of the process • Risks could arise in the vicinity itself or along the transport corridors
 • The polarisation of the communities of Hawker and Kimba has been replicated more broadly across South Australia in the lead-up to the state election, indicating the necessity for significantly more comprehensive consultation
 • The long delay in reaching a decision regarding an appropriate site is indicative of the failure to reach consensus on this issue
 • It is clear that the waste disposal problem has become a major challenge for Government. Cautious and careful consideration is needed if indeed the next stage of this process is to be managed successfully
CONCLUSION 
The appropriateness and thoroughness of the site selection process for a national radioactive waste management facility at Kimba and Hawker in South Australia continues to be questioned despite Government assurances. It remains reassuring to note that the Government has stated that it will not impose such a facility on an unwilling community. The polarisation of the community indicates that there remain significant concerns on the part of local residents, as well as across the broad community of South Australia.
Finding a solution to this current dilemma is not the work of a single discipline or a single group or a single political strategy. Its solution lies as much in scientific data as it does in the ongoing consultation of communities, as much or more in a love land as it does in our instinct for self-preservation or profit.

The question for all of us must be faced. What sort of planet will our children, grand children and great grand children inherit, if this land is used in the way proposed by the Government?

Indigenous anger at Australian govt toting indigenous man across the land to promote nuclear waste dumping

May 6, 2018

Vivianne C McKenzie Shame on ANSTO and DIIS bringing yura to speak about waste dump in Wallerbidina. Who gave welcome to yartah? Did the Adnyamathana peoples give permission for them to have meeting on yartah?

Heather Mckenzie Stuart Disrespectable man shame on him!

 Katrina Bohr This is wrong on so many levels. Once again-No respect.

Roni Skipworth So this guy from Darwahl tribe in NSW didnt ask permission to come on to your Ancestors Lands.  That seems very disrespectful as having good Indigenous friends they used to explain to me the Indigenous Law was ‘Didnt matter where one wanted to travel in other parts of Australia,they needed to go the that destination’s Elders to ask permission to enter into their Lands’. Like those from Adnyamathanha Country who wanted to travel to Lucas Heights would out of respect go to the Elders of the Darwahl Tribe to ask permission to step onto their land. I feel that Indigenous Laws once very strong amongst Australia’s Indigenous are being lost in today’s world. Also I feel that is why some Indigenous Children run amuck as they are lost and living in a White Society under the White Laws have lost their way  .

 Heather Mckenzie Stuart He didnt ask. He come with Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation and Department of Industry Innovation and Science on Taxpayers money to have dinner at the Hawker Social Club where there was a function with invited guests.

No Nuclear Waste Dump Anywhere in South Australia,  6 May 2018    https://www.facebook.com/groups/1314655315214929/

Heather Mckenzie Stuart  Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 5 May Why is ANSTO and DIIS bringing a yaninjanha yura from Darwahl tribe in NSW to Hawker in the Flinders Ranges, making trouble saying urdnus are the only ones protesting against the proposed nuclear waste dump at Barndioota and are using yuras?

We go to protests and we will keep going to protests we will stand against the vartani. Anyway who gives that man the right to come here and talk in Adnyamathanha country, Wilyaru mirus and Adnyamathanha artuyani yarta. This is our ancestors lands, he has no shame we wouldnt go and talk in his yarta about his country. Dont come here pushing a nuclear waste dump on us, keep the poison in your country. You ANSTO and DIIS keep that yura in his country and let him dribble his rubbish over there in NSW. Hands off our sacred sites and stay in your yarta!! Ps his cultural consultancy means nothing to us, he want to stay at Lucas Heights.

Anica Niepraschk calls on Australian government to dismiss the inappropriate Hawker and Kimba nuclear waste site nominations

May 2, 2018

I hereby call onto the Minister to dismiss the Hawker and Kimba site nominations and reconsider all options available, including co-hosting the radioactive waste management facility at an already existing nuclear site.

Submission :  Anica Niepraschk Selection process for a national radioactive waste management facility in South Australia Submission 29  In this  submission, I wish to point out the inappropriateness of the site selection process for a national  radioactive waste management facility at Kimba and Hawker in South Australia.

In 2015, when the current voluntarist approach to the National Radioactive Waste Management Project (NRWMP) was in its early phase calling for land nominations to site Australia’s low and intermediate level radioactive waste management facility, I conducted a study on international best practices for such siting processes. Please thoroughly consider my research findings in the attached  report. In my research, I found that a number of characteristics have internationally proven to be crucial for the success and integrity of a voluntarist approach. The NRWMP is lacking in most of these. Interestingly, in the cases I looked into, siting has only been successful in communities where repository can be co-hosted with other nuclear facilities. These are communities with a nuclear history of some sort, such as hosting a nuclear reactor or intermediate storage facilities for radioactive waste.

Even when other communities had shown initial interest in hosting a radioactive waste facility, they ended their engagement in the siting process quite early on. This shows that it is much more likely for a repository to be hosted by a ‘nuclear community’, which partly roots in it already being familiar with the risks and benefits involved and thereby being much more comfortable to make an informed  decision. An already existing positive relationship with the respective nuclear operator can furthermore contribute to a community showing interest.

Australia currently has a limited number of nuclear activities and stores its radioactive waste materials in numerous intermediate storage places, most of them very small. Only the site of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation’s nuclear reactor and larger radioactive waste storage facility at Lucas Heights would reflect this experience. This is also where the majority of Australia’s radioactive waste is already stored. It would therefore provide the opportunity of simply improving on the current facilities and not having to transport the existing waste to a remote facility, thereby reducing risky and unnecessary transport of dangerous materials.

To be a truly voluntary process, community and public opinion has to be effectively taken into account by the respective decision making institutions and reflected in decisions. This means thatcommitments to not impose a repository on any community have to be observed. Showing respect towards informed decision-making necessitates providing local communities and the wider public with the necessary time and information. This is an essential factor to build trust towards the implementing agency.

Furthermore, a truly voluntary process acknowledges the role of the communities by engaging with them throughout the whole duration of the repository project. This should not be limited to the siting process but extend to the construction, operation and closure phases of the project. As the case of Belgium shows, communities can engage on issues such as the facility design and wider community implications e.g. facility monitoring and socio-economic projects. The early provision of information is essential, providing the community and wider public with the possibility to commission studies, reports and expert opinions. This encompasses an extensive assessment of environmental impacts and of alternative methods and siting options as major references to base a meaningful siting decision on for both the implementing agency and the community. These provisions enhance transparency and accountability and help build a more trusting relationship with the community. They raise the chance of a successful siting process as it is based on an informed decision and allows communities to feel more confident. Indigenous communities and Traditional Landowners play a central role in the siting process in some countries. Their consent and close engagement is critical in Australia where Traditional Owners are directly affected by the sites currently progressed. Furthermore, community engagement should also encompass neighbouring communities, which might be affected by the project.

non-restrictive timeframe should be applied in siting processes, providing all stakeholders with sufficient time to make informed decisions. In the international case studies this has shown to require years. When the community feels comfortable to make a decision on the matter, a test of community support should be taken to establish its position. Similarly, the right-to-veto the government’s or operator’s siting decision should also provide the community with the final say on hosting a facility or not. In generala community should be able to leave the siting process at any time if wished. As the UK example shows, this was one of the main factors communities wanted ensured when consulted on how to improve the siting process and has further proven to be a key feature of all the siting processes, making engagement really voluntary.

All the international examples enabled community engagement through providing funding to use according to their own needs to engage effectively on the issue. Additionally, some countries provide benefit packages for communities participating in the process and/or hosting the planned facility as a way to compensate for the efforts and risks associated and further drive local development, apart from the economic benefits already associated with the project such as employment, improved infrastructure and know-how. In case of any provisions in this respect, it is important that communication on funding or contributions is very clear from the beginning and that it does not compromise the position of the community on the issue and can be handled independently from nuclear operators or facility proponents.

In the case of Australia community engagement is completely carried out and funded by the National Radioactive Waste Management Project (NRWMP) and aimed at supporting the understanding of the project, instead of providing room for engaging on the issue. This transactional approach does not allow for the community to engage in ways it finds meaningful.

The main concern regarding the continuation of the site selection process, however, is the community opposition, which has been apparent for both the Barndioota site near Hawker as well as Kimba.

In the case of Barndioota, the local Adnyamathanha community at Yappala station, just kilometres away from the site, has been very vocal in its opposition to the siting from the beginning. With this site, the government chose, after pursuing Coober Pedy from 1998 to 2004 and Muckaty in the NT from 2005 to 2014, to not only once again target an Aboriginal community but also a culturally highly significant site. The proposed property is part of a songline and hosts many cultural sites, including the beautiful Hookina springs, a sacred women’s site for the Adnyamathanha. The local community remains actively connected to the maintenance and preservation of the land and is documenting and preserving their culture and history through recording traditional heritage sites and artefacts and mapping storylines in the area. The proposal is seen as an attack on their cultural beliefs, history and heritage.

The terms of reference of this inquiry clearly note the Government’s statement that it will not impose such a radioactive waste facility on an unwilling community. If the government is serious about its voluntary intentions and wants to be successful in the siting of the facility, it is paramount not to proceed with the shortlisted sites at Hawker and Kimba as they very clearly do not fulfill the essential criteria of community support. Attempts to ‘convince’ the local community of potential benefits of hosting the facility should be avoided under all circumstances, and the informed decision, which communities have taken, respected.

I hereby call onto the Minister to dismiss the Hawker and Kimba site nominations and reconsider all options available, including co-hosting the radioactive waste management facility at an already existing nuclear site.   https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Economics/Wastemanagementfacility/Submissions

Wasting Time?  International lessons for managing Australia’s radioactive waste: Anna Niepraschk

May 2, 2018

Submission Appendix Anna Niepraschk   Wasting Time?  International lessons for managing Australia’s radioactive waste, Anica Niepraschk Discussion Paper July 2015 from https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Economics/Wastemanagementfacility/Submissions

In her paper Wasting time? International lessons for managing Australia’s radioactive waste, researcher Anica Niepraschk looks at how other countries  have approached this challenge and what lessons might help Australia move away from a search for an ‘out of sight –out of mind’ dump site in favour of a responsible and effective management regime

Overview: For over two decades successive Australian governments have floundered when faced with how best to handle Australia’s radioactive waste.  They consistently tried – and consistently failed to impose a!national dump site on unwilling communities in South Australia and the Northern Territory.

Now the federal government has a revised approached based on a foundation principle of volunteerism. Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane has called for  nominations from around the country and is soon to release a short=list of  possible sites where Australia’s low level waste can be buried and longer=lived  material stored above ground.

1 Introduction

Finding technically, geologically and socially accepted sites for the storage or disposal of all forms of radioactive wastes has proven an international challenge for decades. Many countries have chosen to engage in various voluntary siting processes after having failed to site facilities on solely technical and/or political grounds due to community opposition and public contest. Australia is the most recent country to develop a voluntary approach after the failure of earlier approaches to realise a site.

For two decades Australia has been trying to find a solution to the disposal and storage of its low and intermediate-level radioactive waste (LILW). Attempts to impose a national repository on communities in South Australia (from 1998 to 2004) and subsequently the Northern Territory (2005 to 2014) have failed amid Federal Court trials, leaving the Australian government needing to engage in a different approach to the challenge of siting a repository.Continue reading 

April 30, 2018 Posted by  | AUSTRALIA – NATIONALFederal nuclear waste dumpLeave a comment Edit

Contradictions and problems in the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility Taskforce process

Selection process for a national radioactive waste management facility in South Australia, Submission 29 – Extract from Attachment 1 Anica Niepraschk 

Arising challenges

Even though the current process is still in its early stages, it already either faces new challenges or has not yet dealt with older ones. Despite repeated calls by civil society organisations for an independent Inquiry into the full range of radioactive waste management options available, the government has instead continued its preferred option of a centralised radioactive waste facility. This leaves the current process vulnerable to criticism that the waste should remain at the sites where it is produced rather than being transported long distances through Australia, posing the risks of accidents on the way and the risk of an out of sight – out of mind approach in a remote area far away from expert oversight.

A continuing concern remains the federal government’s perception of urgency to solve the siting challenge, which is used as a justification for avoiding a more time consuming approach based on extensive consultation and consensus. Other countries have recognised that the provision of realistic timeframes is an essential condition in successful siting processes. The Australian government, despite the last 20 years of unsuccessful, rushed and pressured approaches, has again chosen to be bound by a rigid and self-imposed timeframe, trying to resolve the siting in around 18 months.

The current National Radioactive Waste Management Act (2012) is democratically compromised, as it provides for key legislation to safeguard cultural heritage and the environment as well as state legislation to be overridden in order to declare a site. SA, WA, Victoria and the NT all have state legislation in place prohibiting the storage or even transportation of radioactive waste from outside the state or territory. The federal government’s call for all Australian landowners to consider making a site nomination has failed to address this conflict of undermining existing laws and a ‘voluntary’ process………   https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Economics/Wastemanagementfacility/Submissions

73 submissions published to the Australian Senate on Selection Process for Nuclear Waste Dump site

April 30, 2018

The Senate Inquiry  has now published 73 submissions. (We don’t know how many there are that are “confidential”.

I am going through them, not at this point able to estimate how many pro-nuke how many anti-nuke.

For several weeks, the Senate site published only 5 submissions. All were pro nuclear, and looked as if they were dictated by the same person. Their major argument is that the decision on siting the nuclear dump is a matter only for the local Kimba or Hawker community.

At 14 April The published submissions  included 11 pro nuclear, 7 anti nuclear , one “sort of neutral” (Kimba District Council) ,  But REMEMBER – some submissions are not to be published. You can bet that Holtec and other nuclear businesses will have sent in their submissions.

I will be publishing significant submissions on this website.

Latest submissions that I have studied.

  • Anica Niepraschk calls on the government to dismiss the Hawker and Kimba site nominations for nuclear dumping.  Ms Niepraschk investigated international processes for site selection, finding that c0-location with an existing nuclear facility [i.e. Lucas Heights] is the best option. She questions the genuineness of the community consultation, emphasises the opposition of indigenous people. In her attached report, she points out the undemocratic nature of the National Radioactive Waste Management Project (NRWMP) selecting sites in States, despite all States having laws prohibiting this.
  • Colin Mitchell’s powerful submission to the Senate finds the national radioactive waste selection process to be deceitful, with serious issues omitted. He recommens  a different process, run by an independent agency, not connected with ANSTO or ARPANSA.
  • Christine Wakelin is very sceptical of National Radioactive Waste Management Facility Taskforce’s methods and plans, especially the propaganda about nuclear medicine. She questions the assumptions about “community support”, is concerned about the effect on the region’s agricultural economy.
  • Australian Human Rights Commission predicts legal challenges that might stop nuclear waste dump plans for South Australia
  • Barngarla native title holders do NOT support National Radioactive Waste Management Facility on their land – the nominated sites. They outline the chronology of consultation with Federal Government and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. They conclude that community consultation in relation to the site selection rocess for a National Radioactive Waste Management Facility (NRWMF) has been patently inadequate, bordering on non-existent.
  • Michele Madigan explains the dual nature of the government’s planned federal nuclear waste dump – i) a dump for LLW – placed there and never recovered or removed (most of this material will decay to background equivalent in 300 years) and

(ii) a store for ILW to be kept above ground prior to being removed at a undefined future point by an undefined process to an unchosen site for promised deep burial (this material needs to be isolated from the wider environment for 10, 000 – 10K – years).

Sr Madigan puts the case for the ILW being stored at Lucas Heights, where all security processes are already in place, until an independent agency can investigate the matter scientifically, without political bias. She also clearly explains the problematic nature of processes used to procure “community consent” regarding the indigenous community.particularly

  • Barbara Walker highlights the damaging impact of the waste dump on tourism, the flawed opinion surveys, harmful effects on Aboriginal people, and the illgality of the nuclear waste dump plan
  • ENUFF makes a powerful case, criticising “community consultation”, sham “Aboriginal involvement”, and the deception over “medical waste” as the purpose of the dump. This is the best of several submissions to the Senate Inquiry, that I have read so far. It can be heavy going for the reader, because it is densely informative.  For a start, I have summarised some of the major arguments.
  • Janet Tiller has deep concerns over this  plan to dump radioactive trash on agricultural land. Also over the lack of inclusion of the wider community, with whole of Eyre Peninsula farming area at risk of losing  its “ Clean Green” image. And at the pro nuclear bias in the committee formed to manage the grant money.
  •  Holly Whittenbury on Nuclear dump siting- Aboriginal issues, tourism impact [not yet published on Senate website] Ms Whittenbury strongly sees the siting decision as a State and National matter, not just a local one.  She highly values the opinions of  Adnyamathanha Indigenous groups, with their intrinsic connection to the land.  She warns on the tourism impact, and is strongly critical of the conflict of interest of nominations by white farmers, especially Grant Chapman.
  • Started with this excellent one from Mrs Justine Major . Mrs Major is most concerned about the choice of farming land for a radioactive trash dump, and is very critical of the “community consultation” process.
  • Scott Cameron’s Submission to Senate finds process for selecting nuclear dump is misleading and faulty. I don’t believe it can be called a voluntary process when the nominator stands to receive a payment of four times the value of their land……The $2 million dollar community benefit fund can only be seen as a bribe for people to vote to go through to the next stage……., the affect that this could have on our exports hasn’t been taken into consideration at all….I have found them to be inconsistent and often misleading with their information…..I know that 2 Liberal party politicians were involved in land nominations both in Kimba and in Hawker and it would be interesting to see how many other Liberal associates have nominated around the country.
  • No Nuclear Waste Dump in Flinders Ranges‘ Submission [not yet published on Senate website] impresses with a strong critique of the nomination and selection process, and lack of social licence. Reminds of the importance of environmental impacts, and of Aboriginal cultural heritage.
  • Noel Wauchope Submission for the public good. [not yet published on Senate website] Stresses importance of generalist, not just “expert” opinion being considered. Notes that, with no discussion, South Australia is already assumed to be the location for the dump. “Community support”must involve the wider South Australian and Australian community. Queries the type of wastes – Low Level and Intermediate Level being lumped together.

Pro nuclear enthusiasm in Ben Heard’s submission to the Senate. Posing as a great environmentalist, Heard downplays the importance of safety risks, confines community involvement to the immediate local community, glosses over the very toxic wastes included, and the fact that wastes will be stranded with no permanent dump planned. https://antinuclear.net/submissions-to-senate-inquiry-18/