WA ALP promises uranium ban

August 30, 2008

In a breakthrough for the WA anti-uranium movement, Premier Alan Carpenter has promised to legislate to ban uranium mining in the state if his government is re-elected at the September 6 state poll.

The announcement is a policy reversal: while having maintained a ban through Carpenter's personal opposition to uranium, the WA ALP voted in April against a Greens-initiated bill to ban its mining.

Quoted in the August 27 West Australian, Carpenter now says legislation is necessary to ensure uranium mining will be "a decision of the Parliament of Western Australia ... rather than a decision of the premier of the day".

Greens MLC Giz Watson promised to support the legislation. The Association of Mining and Exploration Companies called the decision "short-sighted and embarrassing".

Socialist Alliance candidate Julie Gray welcomed Carpenter's statement, but pointed out, "The ALP doesn't control the upper house, and Carpenter knows that. Shelley Archer, who holds the upper house balance of power with Family First, has already said that she won't support this legislation, so the anti-uranium movement can't take this announcement at face value."

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