Comment on the specific recommendations in the Royal Commission's Report

Your comments will help us to understand your initial thoughts and concerns and will support the development of a broader conversation with the community.

Comments closed

rod Neville

21 Jun 2016

with over a million people in this state i don't think under 3 thousand posts on hear hits the mark, also i know i can 'randomly 'pick 25 people for a jury to get what ever outcome i want. if i can work that out perhaps the government might as well. plus it should be all of Australia voting.

john jasson > rod Neville

21 Jun 2016

This sums it up quite succinctly and as evidenced by this site, those that have commented are predominantly against.
And don't hold your breath waiting for a referendum.

Phillipa Allwood

20 Jun 2016

No matter how broke I was, I wouldn't be inviting all and sundry to bury their rubbish in my back yard for all the tea in China! I gather that this poison would be arriving on our shores by sea, and then be transported by road or rail to its destination. Without wanting to be a naysayer, if something can go wrong, it will go wrong. Maritime incident, road or rail accident, terrorism, force of nature are just a few ways this rubbish could be forever contaminating our ecosystem. Each country that creates nuclear waste should be storing their own, not hoisting it onto someone else to deal with and our state government are showing how inept they have been with our taxes by even suggesting that this would be a good thing. A referendum must be held to put this dopey idea to bed once and for all.

Phillipa Allwood

20 Jun 2016

No matter how broke I was, I wouldn't be inviting all and sundry to bury their rubbish in my back yard for all the tea in China! I gather that this poison would be arriving on our shores by sea, and then be transported by road or rail to its destination. Without wanting to be a naysayer, if something can go wrong, it will go wrong. Maritime incident, road or rail accident, terrorism, force of nature are just a few ways this rubbish could be forever contaminating our ecosystem. Each country that creates nuclear waste should be storing their own, not hoisting it onto someone else to deal with and our state government are showing how inept they have been with our taxes by even suggesting that this is a good idea.

Jennifer Stone

20 Jun 2016

I remember that South Australia did not want this. I don't believe that the Jury system will truly represent the voice of the people in South Australia. To say that a Referendum will not be a true indicator of the people voice is ludicrous!! Obviously the decision has already been made and this jury process is just window dressing!! How can we trust the process of building and safe storage of nuclear waste when the Government can't even manage to effectively and safely build a new hospital.If you don't like the decisions the State Government is making, change your vote!!

Noel Wauchope > Jennifer Stone

20 Jun 2016

It probably is window dressing. But we, the public, can demand transparency. We must be informed on who are the expert witnesses? Is the evidence just material taken out of that biased Royal Commission? Will the transcripts of the hearings be made public? Will videos and audios of the hearing be available the the public? Streaming is good, but not enough. Without full availability of hearings information, the Citizens Juries are a farce. These questions must be answered by Emily Jenke and South Australia's NewDemocracyCo and by Sydney's New Democracy.

michael byrne

19 Jun 2016

It's a forgotten fact that the population of SA did not want uranium exported from our shores. Mass protests at Port Adelaide etc.. Now we are being asked to have it (and every one elses waste) stored in pristine areas such as the Flinders Ranges with the pipe dream of having an income for doing that. This government is prostituting itself because it is inept and has no fiscal forward thinkers. That is why we are in the the mess we are in!! A referendum is the only way to let the wider population have a voice. I am very wary of Jay Weatherills "people's jury" solution. To add a cynical note - Could the deal already have been done, and the rheotoric and so called public discussion be nothing more than a distraction?

Noel Wauchope > michael byrne

20 Jun 2016

Very likely. But a public uproar can stop this thing.
It will need changes to State and Federal laws. It's being kept under wraps as "just a State issue" But making Australia the world's radioactive trash toilet is a NATIONAL issue, not just State. I have written to Labor, Liberal and Xenophon 2016 federal election candidates on this issue. I am finding that most of them HAVE NOT EVEN HEARD OF South Australia's toxic nuclear waste plan. When they, and all Australian are aware, that will put the lid on the Royal Commission's scheme!

Stewart Earl

19 Jun 2016

It is an unfortunate fact of life world-wide that terrorism is 'alive and well'. A nuclear dump would make a prime target, would it not? Even easier associated targets would be the transporters themselves. A coordinated series of attacks, such as those seen in Paris in November 2015, could devastate a wide area within the transport corridors.
Has this been adequately addressed by the Commission?

Noel Wauchope > Stewart Earl

20 Jun 2016

No. They glossed over this in the Report.

Government Agency

Consultation Team - Brooke > Stewart Earl

06 Jul 2016

Hi Stewart, thanks for your comment. Terrorist activity is certainly a consideration in the Royal Commission's Report and we would encourage you to read Finding 122 in Chapter 8 (page 122) for more information on this.

john jasson

17 Jun 2016

Chapter 6 page 122 states:
"Because of these shifts, a public vote on a proposal is not
a reliable indicator of ongoing social consent: A vote for or
against a proposal one day may not result in the same level
of social consent one month later. "
The two paragraphs that precede this unsubstantiated opinion as declared by the commission are in my view irrelevant because they relate to changes in public consent for matters of technological change that are easily reversible and have risk profiles that are minimal by comparison to a nuclear storage or transportation accident.
For this reason I have no trust in this process as I believe this to be a blatant attempt to circumvent the people of SA having a true say in this matter. A referendum is the only acceptable way to achieve public consent on a matter that has such significant commercial, safety and social implications for the public of SA.

Darren Woolcock > john jasson

18 Jun 2016

For the good of democracy we will put aside democracy.

Catherine Franks

17 Jun 2016

I will never support any political party that has nuclear waste in their agenda for South Australia.

Noel Wauchope > Catherine Franks

18 Jun 2016

It would help if you wrote to the political parties, especially Liberals and Nick Xenophon Team. see https://antinuclear.net/election-2016/

Noel Wauchope > Catherine Franks

18 Jun 2016

It would help if you wrote to the political parties, especially Liberals and Nick Xenophon Team. see https://antinuclear.net/election-2016/

Noel Wauchope > Catherine Franks

18 Jun 2016

It would help if you wrote to the political parties, especially Liberals and Nick Xenophon Team. see https://antinuclear.net/election-2016/

Noel Wauchope > Catherine Franks

18 Jun 2016

It would help if you wrote to the political parties, especially Liberals and Nick Xenophon Team. see https://antinuclear.net/election-2016/

tim baker

16 Jun 2016

After watching the following snow job that occurred in the 1950's

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vDOUeniCNKM
Copy and paste the link above into your browser.
As a result All of Australians have Higher than Normal Radio Active Levels of Strontium in their bones.
The Public of all of Australia was Lied to at the Highest Levels and It is no different Now.
I believe the royal Commission is doing the same on this Issue.
This Web Site is Biased in favour of the WASTE DUMP.
No Waste Dump.

Daniel Day-Lutz

16 Jun 2016

I thought about building a house in Quorn in the Flinders Ranges. This decision of the royal commission is very disappointing. The whole royal commission is ignoring all dangerous facts like for example earthquakes in the Flinders Ranges (we just had one about 2.1 on the scale in Hawker). There are more facts which we all know but the Royal commission is ignoring all concerns and works all together with doing everything to build this radioactive waste dump in front of our door. Where are all the supporters you speak from? I know a lot of people in Hawker and none is supporting it at all! You also make the same mistakes like with Maralinga once...

Nigel Long > Daniel Day-Lutz

20 Jun 2016

The Royal Commission has made no comment or recommendation on a location for a high level waste facility. The project you are referring to near the Flinders Ranges is a low to intermediate waste facility proposed by the Australian Government for low grade waste (gloves, lab coats, test tubes, etc) currently stored in hospitals and universities around Australia and material from the Lucas Heights reactor which produced nuclear medicines. These are two quite distinct propositions.

Kristen Jelk

16 Jun 2016

I have to say that you are preaching to the converted. I am not an advocate for the nuclear waste dump to be built in such a pristine environment. The pro dump pitch comes from a commercial argument for jobs in the region. I was merely stating the flaws in this commercial proposition from my view as an exporter of premium products from SA.

Ocker O'Reilly

16 Jun 2016

How disingenuous... perhaps you could explain your hypothetical fantasy away the same way you would explain away the presence of the world's third most radioactive spot at the very real Arkaroola in the Flinders Ranges http://www.australiasomuchtosee.com/sprigg.htm , or the old Maralinga test range which has been there for over 50 years

Kristen Jelk

16 Jun 2016

Last month I was in China promoting an Australian product that comes from SA which is pitched as a clean, green, environment. The full potential of the market in China for South Australian produce is immeasurable. From a Chinese consumers point of view, the environmental conditions where the product is sourced or grown, is pivotal to the choices made when purchasing. Chinese consumers will pay top prices for products that are considered SAFE - produced where the source is known to be an unpolluted clean environment. Perception is everything, and if a consumer becomes aware that SA had developed a nuclear waste dump, then that perception of a safe environment will be shattered. It will not matter that the dump is in a desert, nor will it matter if the dump is considerable distance from prime agricultural land, nor will it matter if experts assure of safety standards. The perception that would prevail is that SA will be a dumping ground for nuclear waste. If this is a discussion over commercial viability verses environmental risks long term, then I would argue that the real cost of the dump being located in SA is the loss in the perception that SA is a "clean, green" state. Questions would be raised over validity of the safety of the states produce. Science does not dispel the pervading distrust of nuclear waste storage. Impassioned long standing anti-nuclear supporters cannot be placated and therefore ongoing discourse over the proposed dump will just shine a brighter light on the discussion world wide. The long term impact on the revenue of export sales will, without doubt be affected. To risk the potential of long term growth in export sales due to a short term vision on job creation,( which is questionable ) is not good economics. SA has the potential to be a renewable energy ambassador with exciting projects already in development. We have to think globally, not locally if we are to sustain economic growth based on the real tangible asset that we have, which is our environment.

Bill Pearce > Kristen Jelk

16 Jun 2016

That's an excellent point. It's not something I'd considered.

Darren Woolcock > Kristen Jelk

18 Jun 2016

I trust you've written in to the Committee with this? Please don't leave it on this forum alone.

Kristen Jelk > Kristen Jelk

20 Jun 2016

I haven't done so yet, but happy to follow up.

Nigel Long > Kristen Jelk

20 Jun 2016

France has had a nuclear industry and stored high level waste for decades. Many facilities are within internationally renowned wine and food regions (Bordeux, Champagne). There has been no impact on their brand.

Kristen Jelk > Kristen Jelk

20 Jun 2016

That is true, however it is about perception. Referring to the 'brand value' of a country, I believe that France's brand value is about history, tradition, culture, the arts and the inherent expertise that comes from an older well developed civilization. When you buy a French product you are buying into the culture/prestige and finesse of the French style and history.
Australia has a unique brand value which I believe is founded on the perception of wide open spaces, very low pollution levels due to a relatively small population, and areas of natural wilderness. With this in mind, Australian products are sought after for their high quality and safety. The safety aspect is a big issue in the Asian and world market. It is very evident that the quality of our food and personal care products have high value in the export market, particularly China. This is our point of difference when we are competing in an international market and it should be protected. In fact, this is why so many Chinese companies are wanting to invest in Australian primary production companies. They want to export the clean high quality produce back to China because the demand is so high. They are not really interested in the Australian domestic market, just the export potential.
When someone overseas buys an Australian food product or personal care brand, they are buying the assurance of quality and safety.
Anecdotally, there is a lavender farm in Tasmania that sells 90% of its essential oil to France because the quality is so high. France is limited by what it can produce.
World wide searches are done by big brands for supplies of raw ingredients grown and harvested by "ethical standards" - be it environmental or from a human resource point of view. This is driven by the consumer who is better informed than ever before, wanting assurance that the product meets their expectations. The consumer is more aware of ethical standards in production and more and more are seeking brands that they can trust. Marketing trends and social media are driving this, and it will only become stronger as the new generation of consumers mature.
I believe that if you want to future proof your market, you need to protect the essence of what gives it the competitive advantage. France has long understood that their culture and history need to be protected. For Australia it is our environment, and the value of this is immeasurable.

Stephanie Johnston > Kristen Jelk

21 Jun 2016

I agree wholeheartedly that this is the key issue.

Stephanie Johnston > Kristen Jelk

21 Jun 2016

The Chinese export market laps up SA's clean and green branding, and yes this branding is all about perception rather science. Please make a formal submission Kirsten - I believe timing is running out for that.

Barbara Murphy

16 Jun 2016

I think this is a deeply important matter for all South Australian’s to consider hence I have taken the time to familiarise myself with the Royal Commission Report before making comment. I commend the report, I found it easy to follow and it presented a balanced and informed synopsis of the opportunities and risks. However, I deplore the report’s recommendations that existing nuclear prohibitions be removed.

I understand social consent must now be sought by the South Australian Government in relation to the opportunity to establish used nuclear fuel and intermediate level waste storage and disposal facilities in South Australia. My question is, how will consensus of social consent be reached? and what will inform this?

I am strongly of the opinion that used fuel storage and disposal should NOT be engaged in. Humans evolved 200,000 years ago – it takes used fuel 300,000 years to reach the same level of radiotoxicity as natural uranium ore. The precautionary principle should be exercised. Is there an opinion poll attached to this forum that I can put my name to? I would like my opinion to quantify.

This gives me hope…
“Efforts over recent decades internationally to develop nuclear projects by focusing on technical considerations without an equal or even greater emphasis on systematic engagement with the community have commonly failed.” (NFCRC 2016)

John Eagle > Barbara Murphy

25 Jun 2016

This discussion is a little perplexing. The arguments about damage to our international image were put very strongly when South Australia began to emerge as one of the world's major producers of uranium yellowcake. Where is the evidence that our reputation as a clean-green state has been internationally damaged by our decades of uranium mining?

Paul Smith

15 Jun 2016

I just want to say that I like the idea of a dump being in SA in the bush.

We have lost lots of industry and jobs to the east who seem to care little. We need make up for this and this will help.

I saw in the news that a lot of income will be generated, income this state needs.

Steve Charles > Paul Smith

16 Jun 2016

And just one accident deliberate or otherwise would undo all the above permanently.

Daniel Day-Lutz > Paul Smith

16 Jun 2016

Paul Smith, where do you live? I guess far away from the Flinders Ranges.

Stewart Earl > Paul Smith

19 Jun 2016

An opinion such as yours Paul Smith, in which your only stated consideration is for the generation of $s, shows no deliberation for the many generations to come who would have a nuclear dump as a legacy. Too many decisions are based on $s and jobs, using biased information and starving the general public from information relevant to them.

Stephanie Johnston > Paul Smith

21 Jun 2016

And see Kristen Jelk's post re long term $s and jobs in agriculture and food.

Ocker O'Reilly

15 Jun 2016

The one thing anti nuclear groups fear more than anything is the public being able to access accurate unbiased information and verifiable science fact about nuclear power and CO2 free electricity production.
The comments of the string of Nay-Sayers & the end-of-the-earthers below can be summed up as being completely opposed to regarding facts & evidence as being in any relevant. Clearly the opposition to this process wants to demand the public is restricted to responding to emotional appeal, referring to hypothetical fantasy situations, having zero credibility and no basis in any demonstrable reality.

Stephanie Johnston > Ocker O'Reilly

21 Jun 2016

But most of the people posting here are simply concerned individuals, not "anti nuclear groups".

marcelina wood > Ocker O'Reilly

21 Jun 2016

Stephanie,
If you did not in fact know the background of "most of the people posting here", it would not be possible to conclude they are not part of an organization.
If you did in fact have knowledge of the background of "most of the people posting here", it is logical to deduce that such knowledge was not randomly acquired, & strongly imply that it was through an organization.
The only logical conclusion is that either you dont know what you are talking about, OR that you are also part of an organized effort to disguise the fact that most of the tweets are originated through anti nuclear groups.
Given that nearly all of the anti nuclear tweets use the jargon, phrases & talking points & distractions tactically approved & promoted by the coalition of anti nuclear NGOs, the assertion of independently concerned individuals seems very very improbable.

Noel Wauchope

15 Jun 2016

Don't waste too much time writing to this site. It's OK, but the real place now is POLITICS. First of all, you can send a submission to South Australian Parliament. This site here now infected with thorium nuclear shills and Twitter trolls such as Ocker O'Reilly

Secondly you can write to Labor and Xenophon team federal politicians and candidates. Their contact details and sample letters are at https://antinuclear.net/election-2016/

SUBMISSIONS OPEN UNTIL 1 JULY 2016:

JOINT COMMITTEE ON FINDINGS OF THE NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE ROYAL COMMISSION

“A Joint Committee of the South Australian Parliament has been established to consider the findings of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission, focusing on the issues associated with the establishment of a nuclear waste storage facility, and to provide advice, and report on, any South Australian Government legislative, regulatory or institutional arrangements, and any other matter that the Committee sees fit.

Any person or organisation wishing to make a written submission to the Committee, or register an interest in presenting oral evidence to the Committee, is invited to do so by Friday, 1 July 2016.

Written submissions and expressions of interest should be addressed to the Secretary to the Committee, C/- Parliament House, GPO Box 572, Adelaide 5001, by telephone on (08) 8237 9498, or e-mail at guy.dickson@parliament.sa.gov.au

Steve Charles > Noel Wauchope

16 Jun 2016

Well said. National Labor Party opposes the storage of waste from abroad, but this State Labor government is promoting it and have their own agenda which says something about their lack of principles and values.

Lia Zhou

14 Jun 2016

we need worry about Our children's future not just crazy to make money! ruin Our clean and natural land!

other countries do nuclear in desert far way from humam being!

Our country are in huge debt! why we want nuclear in peaceful time? we are safe and indenpent land best location in the world!

we wasted too much money on things not urgent or necessary, then got a huge debt.

Our country is in hard time, we 
should be tight on everything except food, bills, medical, education those basic living things.

Nada Nada

14 Jun 2016

NO nuclear rubbish in SA, where we live,where we breathe. All the talk,reports and stuff are Rubbish. There can not have any good out of this. Any... Japanese are the Most disciplined nation on Earth, they are strict and straight forward.. Yet, look what happened there not so long ago. Australians are one of the Most Idiot group of people together - a nation of idiots. Starting from the top down. Corruption rule everything,hypocrisy and lies... How do you thing Anything would be good for long in SA in those conditions...?!! It will ruin the state and from there the country. But,from the side of jobs etc... - bring it on.. will help me sell my place and get the hell out of here.

Jamie Bishop > Nada Nada

14 Jun 2016

Unhelpful ill informed rant

Nada Nada > Nada Nada

14 Jun 2016

And Who are you Jamie Bishop..? Do you think you are informed or more knowledgeable than any other person posting here..?!! Or you are just a loyal dog barking against everything and everyone who express different than your opinion.
My post is Not unhelpful - is a clear NO to the waste dump. If you count the Yes and the No responses you will see which one prevail.
Is definitely not rant, because is the truth. Exactly how truthful are the other people comments you, the hypocrite, labeled with the same -"unhelpful ill rant".
Who gives you right to Judge what other think and to stamp your **** judgement.
Yes- the government is consisting of greedy,stupid and Pig headed idiots, who Hypocritically ask people opinion,but than will do What they want and how they want with their Own monetary gain out from it.
Yes, this nation is full with mislead fulls, drug heads and drunks,lazy and stupid people, corrupted hypocritical "leaders" who have No guts to stand up united and change the world for good.
So, basically, Jamie Bishop - go stick your stuck up judgements ...you know where.. Because as I see it - you are No one.

Ivan K > Nada Nada

15 Jun 2016

You're very clear your opinion is 'NO' Nada, but unfortunately I don't see any factual explanation as to why, other than the example in Fukushima. But note that in their case, it was a nuclear power station (very complex) while you are referring to a dump which is much simpler (but shouldn't infer complacency). As far as I understand that plant survived a 9 on the Richter scale earthquake (very impressive) and then survived a tsunami (also very impressive) but the back up power systems were destroyed and resulted in the failure. I think it actually says a lot about the robustness of the technology and engineering if you can throw the biggest natural disasters at it and it survives.... fortunately a dump would have to have such dependence on power since SA's power infrastructure is at such a low standard.

Ivan K > Nada Nada

15 Jun 2016

You're very clear your opinion is 'NO' Nada, but unfortunately I don't see any factual explanation as to why, other than the example in Fukushima. But note that in their case, it was a nuclear power station (very complex) while you are referring to a dump which is much simpler (but shouldn't infer complacency). As far as I understand that plant survived a 9 on the Richter scale earthquake (very impressive) and then survived a tsunami (also very impressive) but the back up power systems were destroyed and resulted in the failure. I think it actually says a lot about the robustness of the technology and engineering if you can throw the biggest natural disasters at it and it survives.... fortunately a dump would have no such dependence on power since SA's power infrastructure is at such a low standard.

marcelina wood

13 Jun 2016

The current stocks of spent nuclear fuel could power the entire planet for 72 years with no CO2 and no mining https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0g_K1vYJZU OR we can waste more time pretending to worry about seriously hypothetical delusions, myths & what ifs proposed by serial time wasters with no solution to anything.
Its ONLY waste if you let the anti nuclear lobby convince you to waste it.
A cask storage facility would essentially be a 10 hectare parking lot for 100 years, which has zero long term environmental impact on anything much.
A deep geological repository is essentially a tunnel entrance. There is no interruption to anything much on the surface, & there is no "story telling" relationship with anything much that is 500+ meters below the surface, unless there was a secret mining industry existing before European settlement. As for using the surface, there is no problem with putting a solar farm or wind farm above the repository as No One could tolerate living near them anyway.
As for all this chest beating rubbish about stored nuclear fuel ruining our 'pristine' environment... It hasn't had any impact on anyone's environment anywhere else on the planet. Its about time for people to actually catch up with what is happening in the real world.
If we formed a partnership with the RoK to build their PRIDE recycling center here, we get the benefits of the income from accepting spent fuel, the employment from building and operating the recycling center, the employment from oversight & supervisions of operations, the income from resale of the recycled Uranium & Zirconium), and we reduce the disposal cost to just the fission products (which is about 3% of the originally accepted volume).
If we got really sensible we would also start putting in Small Modular Reactors which could provide huge amounts of desalinated water for the state to help reduce massively SA's dependence on the Murray. We could and should also start developing CO2 neutral synthetic liquid fuels to de-carbonise Transport AND reduce Australia's $34 Billion a year spent on importing fossil based fuel. If we got really smart, we could even assure our place in a global high value clean energy industry, where we manufacture smart recycling technology, for prosperity extending a long time into the future.
Time to Just get on with it

john jasson > marcelina wood

14 Jun 2016

Hi Marcelina, I am afraid that 30 second video didn't convince me, even if it was on youtube. If the opportunity is so great, then given that nuclear has been around for so long, why haven't any of the user countries invested in solving it? There are also plenty of options in those user countries for deep geological repositories. i see mo justification for the transfer of huge risk half way around the planet when we could invest taxpayer funds into much more higher yielding wealth generation pursuits and at much less risk. Let's not rush in.

marcelina wood > marcelina wood

14 Jun 2016

I can understand that you would not want to take the opinion of a PhD in nuclear engineering on a nuclear subject if it conflicted with your dearly cherished articles of faith, but it should be pretty obvious that the USA, France, Russia, UK & quite a few other countries have all invested heavily in recycling nuclear fuel, and most continue to invest heavily. The whole point is that there is no "Huge Risk" to South Australia and what financial risk there is, is mostly borne by countries which would use the service because they then do not have to take the time & effort to build their own. They can use a shared facility, much as individuals in suburban Australia dont each build their own petrol station, or hospital, or library, for much the same reasons, & at much the same risk. The reason the US does not recycle its nuclear fuel is that it is currently cheaper to use fresh uranium & to leave the spent fuel in casks, & easier to avoid litigation from a well funded anti nuclear lobby. The reason countries like Britain dont have a repository is that they have been unsuccessful in selecting a site, or like the US they have selected a site which has been effectively blocked by political intervention (not scientific reasons).
Bleeding our government & public dry by subsidizing inefficient energy production to make it appear cheap is just rhetoric & certainly not "higher yielding wealth generation pursuits" when compared to accepting large up front payments to store used fuel in containers in a car park, containers which have never caused anyone any actual harm to anyone.
The entire point of the current process is to allow the public easy access to verifiable science & to compare that science to the rhetoric. If your arguments hold water, you should have faith in a majority of our fellow Australians to accept them. If as it appears, you lack that faith, then I suppose you will simply have to put up with the democratic rejection of your position & its associated rhetoric by an informed public based on hard verifiable evidence, sworn testimony & the scientifically consensus demonstrated at the Royal Commission.

john jasson > marcelina wood

14 Jun 2016

Seems to me from your essay above, you have your own dearly cherished articles of faith. For me it is very simple. Consider the recommendations carefully and provide comment. I have made it clear I disagree strongly with most of them and most of the commentary I have read in this forum has served to reinforce my view. Democracy will indeed eventually take it's course and there will be plenty more rhetoric to come. At this time I remain very strongly against and am not prepared to blindly trust anyone be they scientist or politician or cheerleader.

robert challis

13 Jun 2016

The report recommends that if a nuclear waste facility is established in SA, "it must be owned and controlled by the state government, and that the wealth generated should be preserved and equitably shared for current and future generations of South Australians". This raises several questions:
1. Can the state Government be trusted to run such a facility indefinitely into the future without taking shortcuts to increase short term profits?
2. Can we sure that such a Government run enterprise would not be privatised some time in the future, next decade, the decade after, next century?
3. If privatised, and we be sure that private enterprise would run such a facility indefinitely into the future without taking shortcuts to increase short term profits?
Can anyone confidently answer yes to any of these questions?

Jamie Bishop > robert challis

14 Jun 2016

Who really knows? But Robert, can you assure us that without this sort of activity can SA maintain its current lifestyle and welfare support?

Darren Woolcock > robert challis

18 Jun 2016

Hi Jamie, using a false dichotomy to counter valid points based on reading the report is not sound. And I could counter you with exactly the same question, possibly expanding with some trifle about humans being endlessly innovative.

Instead, perhaps you can point out where in the report it suggests that SA MUST take on this project to maintain current lifestyle and welfare support.

Chris Kikianis

12 Jun 2016

No nuclear power, it's not clean we still have to dump the toxic waste. Not a good idea

Jamie Bishop > Chris Kikianis

14 Jun 2016

Unhelpful ill informed comment

toby lockyer

11 Jun 2016

what an absolutely ridiculous idea, i understand that everyone is seeing the initial $ signs but STOP and think about the amount of loss in tourism alone, who the hell will want to visit a waste dump, SA is already struggling. now please understand i don't want the dump idea to be shifted to another state in Australia its not good for anyone. Those who create the rubbish need to deal with the rubbish its very simple! stick the money up your #### we don't need something that will create absolute poverty to small business because noone wants to come here WAKE UP pollies and think beyond your own life expectancy. to ruining Australia I say NO!

Jamie Bishop > toby lockyer

14 Jun 2016

Unhelpful ill informed rant

David Richards

11 Jun 2016

The real weakness for this report is the 'pie in the sky' financials: The numbers may add up, however their basis in fact is largely illusory… Completion of the construction of the underground storage facility is by use of the money collected after many thousands of tonnes of waste has been collected and stored on the S.A surface. The proposal’s model is supposed to be simple: we start collecting the used fuel for which we will be paid $1.2 million a tonne, we store it on the surface for 10 plus years while the repository is prepared under the surface, and then inter it permanently underground. The weakness of this financial model is that it relies upon our potential customers providing a constant supply of waste at a premium price that we nominate for a sustained period.

What happens if not all of our customers is prepared to continue to pay the $1.2 million a tonne? They might send, 100 tonne, say, at the nominated price to get things started, and then ask for a discount. The potential suppliers will know the score, once the canisters are on the surface; the clock in S.A is ticking: success will rest upon this timeline for permanent storage below the surface, achieved by the sustainability of the cash flow generated by maintenance of the waste stream at the nominated price. The overseas suppliers will have done their sums, some of them have held on to this waste for the last 50 years, holding back for a little while longer to get a cheaper price is good business sense. Paying our initial asking price may free up enough space in their local repositories to allow them to absorb new waste until we offer them disposal at a reduced rate. They will have a good idea of the breakeven point of disposing of this waste, and will if they are feeling generous offer this price. Once the waste is accumulating on the South Australian surface, who will be the most desperate, those getting rid of the stuff, them that have been stock piling it for years, or us with a partially built facility and waste in temporary storage on the surface?

If I might be allowed some additional speculation… As the management of the disposal facility is likely to be by an overseas-based private firm, linked to the nuclear industry (Why not? S.A governments have a tendency to farm out the management of utilities to foreign companies), a case could be envisaged where their interest in the S.A facility is more as a ‘service’, rather than as a strictly profit making venture. It could become just a profit shifting exercise, the object of which is not to maximise profit by disposing of waste in S.A, but to reduce the upstream costs of nuclear production. The only benefit to S.A is that this benefit to the energy producers reinvigorates the demand, and hence price for Uranium rises, and the shelved plans for Olympic Dam are once again dusted off, and a few of the other mines currently closed down around the state become economically viable once again.

What are we going to do if the price for dumping the waste falls? Once the first canister arrives (for us whose futures are here in S.A, those whose interest is not as a shareholder of a foreign mining company), we will be committed, there is no going back. This is a game for grown-ups and the total lack of discussion (by its proponents) about the proposals potential for failure is unbelievable. This has the potential to be a greater disaster than the State Bank, or the Queensland government’s recent involvement with Linc Energy. THIS IS NOT A JOKE, this thing is off the rails, and it is going to be hard for the members of our State Government to admit that the $9 million plus already invested in developing a report to advocate for increased involvement in the nuclear 'cycle' was nothing more than a reckless waste of State taxpayer resources.

If this thing was going to work, and all of a sudden, a market for disposing of a tonne of used fuel for 1.2 million bucks suddenly existed, do you not think others would not also join the game? I foresee China putting its hand, up saying…”We have similar geology, out in the Gobi desert or somewhere, we'll take it for $50 less than whatever the South Australians will do it for, and we'll throw in a free Blu-ray player”, or the like...This is how global trade works. If a new market develops in a commodity or in a service, then others will seek to enter. (In whose interest other than our own, is it to have a monopoly in fuel dumping?) Once we move past the ‘proof of concept’ to actually shipping the canisters to a site, the economics of the costs of leaving the waste where it is versus sending it to an alternative facility comes into play. S.A, with its imported waste sitting on the ground, will be left hoping to get enough business to pay the Wormald man at the gate, and the next bit of diesel to dig the hole just a metre deeper. – The weakness of these dependencies will be added to by other challenges, the demand to get the stuff off the surface and down the hole before the next big earthquake or terrorist attack, or whatever, occurs.

What happens when the private public partnership goes wrong, the private company can just declare bankruptcy and go back to whatever tax haven they more than are likely based in? Then we are left with a decision of whether we let a Chinese company, with links to its government (the Kidman scenario), buy a controlling interest in the dump. Or do we bankrupt the state, lose the AAA credit rating, sell off all our utilities (no, we did that last time), sell the last of bit of our sovereignty that we still able to control, so as to manage the disaster this project will no doubt become? We do not seem to be learning the lessons of history.

The whole thing is a sick joke. I believe those proposing this even know there will inevitably be stuff ups, and the economics will not work: they are just hoping they can manage it (like leaving the plutonium at Maralinga to blow around on the surface for fifty years). The plans are all about the economic activity generated in the next five years, and not the future consequences. There is a confidence in government that they will be able to ‘manage’ public perception of any problem. The public are offered the "carrot" of a future fund, where South Australians will all be in Norwegian clover for the foreseeable future. We are being consulted on the economic model of a project based on little more than dreams and high hopes. How do we meaningfully engage as a community with people who think that the Japanese, Taiwanese and Koreans are going to send us their waste at such a premium for the next 120 years? It is just silly. “Build it and they will come”, maybe, but not for 100 years, and not at premium prices!

With the current collapse of the uranium price to its lowest price since May 2005, this process has more to do with subsidising the upstream nuclear energy business –as Kevin Scarce admitted in his address at the Hawke Centre on Wed 1st June: all aspects of the nuclear chain "certainly since Fukushima - it’s gone into the doldrums.” (see, Hawke Centre lecture recording,1:06:00).

The same could no doubt be said of the intellectual backbone of the South Australian Labor Party. The party has so reversed its previous policy undertakings, it has become the servant of the of the uranium mining industry. The paper industry in the S.E. is dead, steel manufacture in Whyalla is on the ropes, we no longer control our power, water or gas, the Whitegoods industries are gone, and Holden’s is finished. It is ‘the poverty of the imagination’, both major political parties continue to favour the grand economic model that risks everything on one endeavour - the multi-billion dollar project that will be a game changer - and when they fail, as they always seem to, it will be the taxpayer that is left picking up the pieces.

Our political leaders are the worshipers of a form of Cargo Cult. It is time that they ask themselves if it is not all a bit hard for them. They are really only taking up space that somebody with real policies might occupy, their failures are not doing the State any good. This 'big picture thing' is a gamble, calculated to make up for the lack of any meaningful policy development in the state. What, other than a collection of well-meaning pipe dreams, does this government consider its industry policy to be? The years of weak policy, development is finally coming home to roost. When the Labor party starts reversing its former positions by 180 degrees, is it not time to ask yourself, if it is all been really worth it? It may be strength to admit when you are wrong, it is another thing to abandon the policy positions of the last 50 years, and think that your former constituents will not feel the betrayal.

BHP’s Olympic Dam mine is struggling, and no doubt, this is the State Government’s attempt to stop it going the same way as Rio Tinto's Energy Resources of Australia Ranger mine in the N.T, so we are putting our hands up to their customers and saying... “Struggling with the cost of your waste, no worries buy our yellow cake and we will take your waste.” Some jokers even try to tell me I have a moral responsibility to repatriate this transformed material. The world does not work like that! It’s laughable – It’s the invitation to a mad hatter’s tea party, the whole process is based on a fallacy of a yet to come into existence market for dumping nuclear waste, at some incredible premium, with a price that will never fall only go up. This is a very poor business for us to contemplate being involved.

Steve Ingham > David Richards

12 Jun 2016

Very well argued and expressed. Hope you get on the CJ or, at least, you can present your thoughts to them. Maybe, in the more immediate future, we can get some relevant comments from the government watchdog on your pertinent observations.

Jamie Bishop > David Richards

14 Jun 2016

..but do you not see the need for the globe to come up with real alternatives if you are serious about halting/reducing global warming primarily thru fossil fuel use? Nuclear energy must be considered in the medium term... and as one of the largest suppliers with massive potential we deserve to participate and benefit.

Daniel Day-Lutz > David Richards

16 Jun 2016

No, there are other alternatives than nuclear.

David Richards > David Richards

16 Jun 2016

I agree with you Jamie: global warming is a significant threat to the continuance of human life (as we know it) on the planet and worthy of discussion and action. However, this is not what is immediately at issue in this forum. Discussed here is a proposal to import and store a large amount of nuclear waste on the surface (for at least a decade). Then after the State receives a lot of money, they propose to use some of this money to prepare a permanent storage for this waste deep below the surface.

For the reasons highlighted in my earlier discussion, I do not believe that the economic case for undertaking this project has been justified. I also do not believe that the threat you raise, of human induced climate change, means that we should rush into multi-billion dollar projects that claim to offer high returns, while disingenuously claiming we are doing it on the basis of environmental motives.

The current global warming crisis exists because humans have not been able to reconcile the environmental costs of their activities with the economic imperatives they follow. We can be better. I would like to think, for example, that the points raised in this consultation process, highlighting the report’s various inadequacies, would be seriously evaluated on their merits.

There are advanced manufacturing countries that have decided to abandon their reliance on nuclear and fossil fuels. Germany and Sweden both have ambitious plans to significantly reduce carbon energy dependence in the medium term, and to be carbon neutral by 2050. The German energy transition policy, Energiewende, is over 10 years old. It has four main political objectives: to fight climate change, avoid risks associated with nuclear power, improve energy security, and guarantee competition and growth. Unlike the local proposal, that has minimal public support, German politicians and citizens strongly support the move away from nuclear to renewables -with 85 percent of MPs voting for Energiewende policies in the German Bundestag in 2011. In 2015, support for its goals by the German public was higher than 90 percent. A fuller discussion of how an advanced country embarks on energy transformation and embraces the economic opportunities it offers is available here:
https://www.agora-energiewende.de/pl/themen/-agothem-/Produkt/produkt/220/Understanding+the++Energiewende/

It is also worth noting discussions about the contribution that is already being made by renewable energy technologies to the SA economy. As recently as this morning on ABC Radio, Fran Kelly interviewed Simon Hackett, who gave examples of how the local renewable energy sector is contributing to the local economy, and where the SA Government Industry and Energy Policy could be better directed. Hackett, who has invested a significant amount of his own capital in an energy storage company, is upbeat about the contribution that this rapidly evolving technology will make in future towards a South Australia less dependent on fossil fuel technologies:
http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/breakfast/technology-entrepreneur-simon-hackett-on-australias/6782480

Sadly our government has decided to embark on a Royal Commission which only looks at the contribution the nuclear cycle could make. We have already spent over $9 million on this proposal to advocate for a nuclear waste dump.

Darren Woolcock > David Richards

18 Jun 2016

I trust you've sent this through to the Committee and not just written it here?

Lyndall Kay

10 Jun 2016

The economic model seems flawed to me and I'm not an economist:
- firstly we spend money on building it, but at what cost?
- then we spend money buying/building the supposed safe transport options - how is this not risky? who will be responsible if there is a security breach/leak/accident etc, us the importer or the exporter? is it the exporters cost at sea and ours on land or do we take the full brunt of the cost? what will be the cost to people and the environment for such accidents?
- how can you predict the market when we still can't predict the cost of coal, oil or milk - now or let alone in the future?
- taking a one off payment for something that has to be stored basically forever seems a bit short sighted considering the above.
- what about competition in the future if it's such a good idea won't other countries, organisations want to get on to this money spinner?
- it will damage any chance of a future economy in more sustainable industries.
- this country will never be able to be used again for anything else - ever!