Media Headlines

follow the links below for some of the recent headlines on the nuclear power debate in Australia…

January 2020

Should Australia reconsider nuclear power? One US expert says yes (RN Breakfast)

December 2019

Albanese attacks Coalition’s nuclear ‘fantasy’ as Greens say report should ‘alarm all Australians’ Government-dominated committee calls for partial lifting of nuclear ban and for greater work on nuclear technology

Prudent nuclear ban should remain: ACF Australia’s bipartisan, long standing and prudent prohibition on nuclear energy should remain in force as it stands.

Taylor rejects call for partial lift of nuclear power ban Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor has poured cold water on calls to partially lift Australia’s moratorium on nuclear power to allow investigation of emerging technologies.

Coalition pushes for nuclear ban to be lifted, Labor says it’s madness Federal Coalition MPs have called on the Morrison government to lift the ban on nuclear energy and pave the way for “emerging” nuclear technologies to be introduced into Australia’s energy mix, despite their enormous expense, huge environmental risks, and as-yet unproven technical status.

November 2019

Australia is the great ‘white’ hope for the global nuclear industry The global nuclear industry is in crisis but that doesn’t stop the pro-nuclear lobby from peddling exorbitantly expensive nuclear as a “green alternative”. 

ANSTO’s reply on nuclear crash report – that reply debunked ANSTO Claim: “The accident in the 1980s did not involve material or vehicles associated with ANSTO’s predecessor, the Australian Atomic Energy Commission (AAEC), nor did it originate from Lucas Heights”.

Switkowski preaches for nuclear energy invoking Bill Gates, Elon Musk The former Telstra CEO said Australia was a nation of great technologists and great engineers that should give nuclear power a shot.

Nuclear for Newcastle? But the Hunter’s renewable energy programme is underway The Hunter has renewable energy plans, but the nuclear question remains. 

October 2019

Nuclear Promises, by Tilman Ruff Back on the political agenda in Australia, but for what benefit?  In 2006 the Howard government commissioned nuclear enthusiast and former chair of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Ziggy Switkowski to undertake a review of nuclear power for Australia. On 1 June 2010 Switkowski made an extraordinary statement about matters nuclear on the ABC’s World Today:

Queensland conservatives a voice of reason in nuclear debate. Seriously! The Queensland state Liberal National Party (QLNP) has dropped a bombshell into the ongoing federal inquiry into nuclear power. Its submission to the inquiry goes against prominent members of its federal counterpart, and argues for the retention of federal legislation banning nuclear power, saying more emphasis should be placed on the deployment of renewables and energy efficiency programs.

Queensland LNP breaks with federal branch to oppose nuclear power Queensland LNP says it supports a greater focus on energy efficiency measures. One of the biggest detractors of the federal Queensland Liberal National party’s push to investigate nuclear energy as a potential power source for Australia has come from within its own house.

Barnaby Joyce finds a new cause in nuclear power Australia’s best-known backbencher is hitching a ride to the nuclear debate and creating awkward moments.

Nationals MP lashes renewable energy as ‘hoax’ and ‘fraud’ but says nuclear will help solve energy crisis  Nationals senator Sam McMahon has lashed renewable energy as a “fraud” and a “hoax” as she made the case for oil, gas and nuclear energy.

Nuclear energy: Nationals MPs welcome AWU support for domestic industry Union to tell parliamentary committee it’s ‘ludicrous’ to export uranium but not benefit from the energy source at home

Nuclear inquiry hears cost, health risks Taxpayers would be bear the brunt of a potential nuclear energy industry in Australia, a parliamentary committee has been told. Environment groups began the inquiry on Tuesday in Melbourne, a day after the committee was told the potential economic benefits of more uranium mining. The various witnesses implored the bipartisan committee not to overturn Australia’s moratorium on nuclear energy, pointing to the huge health, environmental and financial risks.

NSW Deputy Premier calls for nuclear vote within three years NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro is calling for a federal plebiscite on nuclear power at the 2022 election.

September 2019

Nuclear is too expensive, and takes too long to build As fossil fuels come under increasing pressure, the conversation on whether to install nuclear energy is heating up in Australia, with the New South Wales government on Monday calling for a vote within three years..

Big claims and corporate spin about small nuclear reactor costs Jim Green, 19 September 2019, RenewEconomy. The ‘inquiry into the prerequisites for nuclear energy in Australia’ being run by Federal Parliament’s Environment and Energy Committee has finished receiving submissions and is gradually making them publicly available.

Broad coalition opposes nuclear power More than 40 groups representing millions of Australians have come together to issue a clear message to the federal government that the nation’s energy future is renewable, “not radioactive”.

Nuclear industry must address community concerns Recently promoted as a “green power” alternative, the nuclear option, like so-called clean coal, is a dud and fundamental social concerns about its use remain unaddressed.

Communities unite to halt government nuclear push More than 50 community groups have warned the federal government that nuclear energy has no role to play in Australia’s energy future as public submissions to a federal inquiry into nuclear power close. 

Helen Caldicott: Small modular reactors — same nuclear disasters  The Morrison Government has opened the door to the notion of nuclear power as peddled by the nuclear sociopaths. 

Labor demands nuclear be wiped off options Ever enjoyed a holiday to Noosa, Sussex Inlet or French Island? How would you feel if there was a nuclear power station in your idyllic vacation spot?

Is building small nuclear reactors as ‘loopy’ as it sounds? Experts have warned of “catastrophic failure” if Australia adopts nuclear power, so why is the Government considering it?

New Lib senator joins nuclear power push New Liberal senator Alex Antic has joined the push for nuclear power through capitalising on South Australia’s uranium industry.

August 2019

Risk of ‘catastrophic failure’ if Australia adopts nuclear energy: Switkowski There is a risk of “catastrophic failure” if Australia adopts nuclear energy, a federal parliamentary inquiry has heard. Ziggy Switkowski, who led a Howard government review into the power source, drew attention to the nuclear disasters of Chernobyl in Ukraine, Fukushima in Japan and Three Mile Island in the US.

Nuclear power in Australia not realistic for at least a decade, Ziggy Switkowski says It will be about a decade before it is clear whether small nuclear reactors are suitable for Australia and would take about 15 years to bring a plant online if a decision was made to build one, one of the country’s leading experts has said. But Ziggy Switkowski, who headed a 2006 review of nuclear power for the Howard government, said the technology had no chance of being introduced unless Australia had a coherent energy policy.

Nuclear inquiry told “firmed renewables” cheapest and best option for future A mix of distributed renewable energy generation and firming technologies including battery storage and pumped hydro remains the best path forward for Australia’s future grid, experts have told the federal government’s inquiry into nuclear power.

Why not nuclear energy? We are running out of energy so why not consider the nuclear option? Whether it is an act of war, the result of a natural disaster, a side-effect of testing or a total accident, nuclear energy and waste have resulted in too many catastrophes. Now it is being considered in parliament as an alternative solution to dwindling energy. Is it possible to forget the past in order to embrace the future?

Nuclear power is inappropriate for Australia’ Former Australian of the Year Tim Flannery, the country’s foremost climate scientist, received rapturous applause as he addressed a council meeting to warn against nuclear power as a ‘climate emergency’ was declared for the region. 

Nuclear winter would threaten nearly everyone on Earth Second study of its kind confirms extreme impacts from US vs. Russia nuclear war

Small modular reactors and the nuclear culture wars As another Australian journalist wades into the nuclear culture wars – this time spruiking small modular reactors – it’s a good time for a fact-check on this fabled technology.

Is the push for nuclear power a covert push for nuclear weapons? Recent push for nuclear power in Australia has been promoted by the usual public advocates and amplified by the Murdoch press. The arguments are predictable both in their optimism and inaccuracy: nuclear power reactors are claimed to be safe and cheaper than electricity generation from wind and sun; new generation mini-reactors are claimed to be even cheaper and safer and can be adapted to power a factory or a town.

 What price nuclear power?  All the evidence suggests that this isn’t serious exercise. Rather it’s something intended to appease the National Party or troll the Greens, depending on where you are coming from.

July 2019

Let’s face it: nuclear power is hideously dear and far from ideal The government should be backing renewables, not tying itself to an expensive nuclear future

Taylor grilled by Labor on emissions, says no to Barnaby’s “free” nuclear fantasy Taylor receives repeated warnings to provide answers as the minister for reducing emissions attempts to avoid conceding he is failing his own job title.

The nuclear option New paper undermine the claim that nuclear power is more about culture wars than electricity generation.

Unions revolt over Industry Super’s nuclear backing The Electrical Trades Union has called on industry funds to condemn a paper by their peak body that says nuclear power must be considered for energy investment.

Nuclear power economic’s crisis. Even the Australian Nuclear Association acknowledges that nuclear power reactors could not be built without taxpayer subsidies. 

Minister Sussan Ley could open the door to overturning Australia’s nuclear power ban There are some very good reasons why the push to reverse Australia’s ban on nuclear power is a bad idea.

Industry super urges Australia to consider the nuclear power option Nuclear reactors should be considered as a realistic option to confront Australia’s deepening energy crisis, according to a study from industry superannuation’s chief lobby group.

Nuclear power is helping to drive the climate crisis Linda Rogers says the CBI has its head in the sand over nuclear reactors and Iain Climie wants politicians prepared to fund action to combat the climate emergency

Fukushima, the ‘nuclear renaissance’ and the Morrison Government by Helen Caldicott. Despite the death of the “nuclear renaissance” following Fukushima, the nuclear corporations and ill-informed Morrison Government will not accept defeat.

What’s more chilling: watching Chernobyl or cogitating the cost of going nuclear? The sudden push by the Murdoch media and Coalition right-wingers to overturn Australia’s nuclear power ban ignores the chilling economic cost —  huge public subsidies, storing radioactive waste for thousands of years, the heavy costs of decommissioning and, potentially, radiation-related health costs.

Super industry gets behind nuclear power Australia’s union-backed superannuation industry has made the case for nuclear energy and ­demolished repeated claims wind and solar are the cheapest long-term option for reliable power.

Nuclear Debate on ABC Media Watch. A pro-nuclear power push from conservative media voices plays down the cost, while Andrew Bolt criticises the Chernobyl mini-series.

What a waste: Minister’s question for nuclear inquiry RESOURCES Minister Matt Canavan has shied away from backing an inquiry into nuclear power in Australia, as he warns a permanent home would need to be found for high-level waste first.

Australians urged to adopt nuclear power The Australian Nuclear Association (ANA) has appealed to Australians to understand that nuclear energy is ready to make a valuable contribution to low emission dispatchable generation for Australia.

Australians’ support for nuclear plants rising – but most don’t want to live near one Essential poll finds 44% of Australians support nuclear power plants and 40% oppose them

Robert Parker on nuclear energy in Australia As the nuclear debate reignites in Australia and the viability of a national nuclear power industry is back on the agenda, Australians are starting to raise questions about what a nuclear future could look like.

The reason Australia doesn’t have nuclear power: the workers fought back Workers have been fighting uranium mining for decades – the environment needs mass civil disobedience. 

June 2019

Angus Taylor won’t rule out reversing nuclear energy ban if business case stacks up Energy minister dodges questions about how Australia will meet its Paris emission reduction targets

The argument for nuclear power in Australia It is time for Australia to “seriously discuss” the benefits of developing a nuclear power industry, according to the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM).

Queensland Coalition MPs push for inquiry to lift Australia’s nuclear power ban Keith Pitt and James McGrath behind move, saying ‘we have to be able to investigate all options’. 

Albanese keeps Butler in climate and energy portfolio, as LNP renews call for nuclear New Labor leader Anthony Albanese has re-appointed Mark Butler as opposition spokesman on climate change and energy, ensuring that there is continuity in people, if not in policy mechanisms, in the next parliament.