Nuke dump dangerous


Friends of the Earth (FoE) has expressed concern after the Northern Land Council nominated a site at Muckaty, near Tennant Creek, for a proposed nuclear waste dump.

on May 25, FoE national nuclear campaigner Dr Jim Green rejected claims by John Daly from the Northern Land Council that a nuclear dump could be "safely constructed" in the Northern territory.

"The government agency responsible for the nuclear waste dump, the Department of Education, Science and Training (DEST), has a track record of mismanaging nuclear projects", Green said, noting that when the government planned to dump nuclear waste in South Australia, "the regulator — the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency — agreed that DEST had insufficient expertise to safely manage the project, as did the International Atomic Energy Agency".

"Daly is also wrong to claim that nuclear waste transportation is safe. There have been countless accidents involving nuclear waste transportation around the world", Green argued, citing scandals in France, Germany and the US. "The Lucas Heights nuclear agency ANSTO has acknowledged 1-2 'incidents' each year involving the transportation of nuclear materials to and from Lucas Heights.

"Daly's claim that 'every Australian directly benefits from radiological medical treatment ... produced at Lucas Heights' is also false. In fact, as two Senate inquiries have found, Australia does not even need a nuclear reactor, let alone a nuclear waste dump, in order to assure high-level nuclear medicine services."