Jun 6, 2005

Government Confused over Nuclear Dump

Government Confused over Nuclear Dump

MEDIA RELEASE – Anthony Albanese MP – 6 June 2005

Now that the Howard Government seems to be ruling out its absurd Pacific Solution for nuclear waste, it is targeting the Northern Territory as a potential dumpsite.

Cabinet Ministers always knew that an offshore nuclear dump was a hair-brained scheme, but that’s the Government’s form when it comes to nuclear waste:

• They were determined to impose a nuclear waste dump on South Australians despite strong opposition and only caved in when they realised they would lose Federal seats;

• They’ve got a short term fix to ship some waste to the United States making it someone else’s problem; and

• Cabinet Ministers are out spruiking nuclear power plants but won’t say where they will be sited and what they’ll do with the resulting nuclear waste.

Now it looks like the Government wants nuclear waste to head for the Northern Territory.

The Howard Government’s confusion and incompetence grows every day.

We’ve seen it in airport security, we’ve seen it in immigration and now we see it in nuclear power.

These are major issues for Australia and this sort of incompetence and confusion is dangerous.

We need a national nuclear waste dump strategy. What we don’t need is one hair brained scheme after another.

Those calling for a debate on nuclear power need to acknowledge that the reasons for opposing nuclear power have not been resolved. The very real problems with nuclear waste remain a major issue.

The Opposition has stated it is opposed to nuclear power because of ongoing concerns in relation to nuclear waste, emergency procedures and safety. And that position remains.