Transcript of doorstop interview – Bargara Beach, Bundaberg
Tuesday, 21 August 2007
E & OE – PROOF ONLY
Subject: Labor’s anti nuclear pledge in Bundaberg; Garry Parr campaign
ALBANESE: I’m here today with Garry Parr the Labor candidate for Hinkler to pledge to oppose a nuclear reactor being imposed on the community of Hinkler, whether in Bundaberg or in Hervey Bay.
John Howard is determined to impose 25 nuclear reactors right around the coastline of Australia. We know that they have to be near populations, near the electricity grid, we also know that they have to be near water, because nuclear reactors use 80% more water than other energy sources.
It’s clear that John Howard wants the community to believe, as do National Party members, that you can have 25 nuclear reactors but they won’t actually be located anywhere. When Labor asked the Prime Minister to rule out Hinkler as a location for either nuclear reactor or a high level toxic nuclear waste dump, the Prime Minister refused to do so. He needs to come clean with the Australian public before the federal election about where his 25 nuclear reactors will be located, and where the high level toxic nuclear waste dumps will go.
JOURNALIST: In an already a drought stricken area, where will these reactors get the water they will use?
ALBANESE: Nuclear reactors are high users of water and they use 80% more water than other energy sources. Quite frankly, it’s absurd for Australia to be going down the nuclear path when we have abundant resources of coal and research being done on clean coal technology. We also have an abundance of renewable energy. Australians want renewables not reactors in their local communities. In April, John Howard said he would introduce Commonwealth Legislation to override the existing outlawing of nuclear reactors that’s there in Federal Legislation, and also to override the States which currently have bans on nuclear facilities.
JOURNALIST: Is Garry Parr going to be able to help locally?
ALBANESE: What Queensland needs is true representation. We need people such as Garry Parr to be elected to the Federal Parliament so that the arrogance of the Howard Government is ended. Here we have the Howard Government being prepared to impose nuclear reactors up and down the Queensland coast, without telling Queenslanders where the locations will be, just like before the last election he didn’t tell Queenslanders that he’d impose his unfair Workchoices legislation. That’s why we need Garry Parr and other Labor candidates to be elected to bring true representation from Queensland to the Commonwealth Parliament.
The fact that the National Party candidate here has refused to sign the anti-nuclear pledge says it all. They are trying to send messages to people in the community that somehow this won’t happen. They’re not prepared to sign the anti-nuclear pledge, because they know that the leadership of the Liberal Party and the National Party in Canberra are determined to impose these nuclear reactors on local communities such as here in Hinkler. It’s outrageous that Mr Neville has refused to stand up for his local community against Canberra’s nuclear reactor push.
GARRY PARR: Mr Neville’s silence is deafening. I believe the people of Hinkler deserve more than this, and they need an answer now from Mr Neville as to exactly what he’s going to do in relation to a nuclear reactor or waste plant.
It’s my commitment that there will not be a nuclear power plant or waste facility in the Hinkler electorate and we want something from him – to stand up and be counted. He can dodge and duck and dive as much as he likes, but I think it’s time that he did something about it.
ALBANESE: Bundaberg is known for its pristine local environment, and Bundaberg’s also known for its rum. We want Bundaberg to continue to be known for its rum, not to be known as the place where they imposed a nuclear reactor and a high level nuclear waste dump.
Leader of the Australian Labor Party, MP for Grayndler, Rabbitohs Life Member. Authorised by Anthony Albanese, ALP, Canberra.