In February 2015 SA Premier Jay Weatherill announced a Royal Commission into the Nuclear Fuel ‘Cycle’. The title of’Cycle’ is misleading as the process is actually a chain leading to the final destination as nuclear waste. This investigation is separate from the federal proposal for a national nuclear waste dump for Australia’s waste.
The Royal Commission handed down its final report in May 2016 recommending SA accept the world’s high level nuclear waste for final disposal for profit. Independent economic analysis throws into doubt the economics of the proposal. There is a very real risk that SA won’t make a profit and may end up either going into debt to dig the underground dump, or be left storing high level waste above ground near the coast indefinitely.
The Commission says that the project can be done safely while ignoring all the accidents and incidents that have taken place already in the nuclear industry. Only two intermediate nuclear waste dumps exist in the world, one in the USA and one in Germany. There was an explosion and fire in the USA dump and it is now closed down. The USA does not have a final destination to store its high level waste and it is stored around the country in unsatisfactory location. The German waste dump is leaking and engineers are considering what to do about it. The Commission keeps referring to the success of the dump they are building in Finland – but it is still under construction and does not contain any waste yet.
The government set up what they called a ‘Citizen’s Jury’ to put questions that they thought the general public needed to know about. Unfortunately the answer to all the questions was just the Royal Commission report, despite many of the jurors questioning whether the information was complete. The SA government is now embarking on what it calls ‘community consultation’ tours around SA at 100 sites. The list of site visits and dates are here.
Environment, church and union groups in SA are campaigning against high level nuclear waste dumps on environmental, safety, economic and Aboriginal rights grounds – information at the links below.
Links for more information about the nuclear dump campaign
The following links lead to information to keep up with the Conservation Council, No Dump Alliance and Friends of the Earth nuclear campaigns.
To keep in touch with the Conservation Council’s nuclear campaign please sign up sign up here
Please check out the Conservation Council nuclear campaign menu here
- Sign a postcard to the premier
- Write an email to your local politician
- Visit your MP
- High Level Dump Fact Sheets
- Developments and Reports
- Conservation Council Submissions
- Conservation Council’s Media Releases
No Dump Alliance
Please also sign the statement of Concern with the No Dump Alliance here – individuals welcome
Information on the National Dump proposal
Information on the International Dump proposal
Traditional Owner Statements on the Australian Nuclear Free Alliance website
Anti-Nuclear Coalition SA
The Anti-Nuclear Coalition Facebook page is here
Meetings are held at the Joinery (Conservation Council) 111 Franklin St 6-8pm on the 1st and 3rd Monday of the month.
Anti-nuclear campaigner with Friends of the Earth Adelaide
Volunteer at the Conservation Council of SA