South Australia opens up nuclear discussion

400px-Jay_Weatherill_webSOUTH Australia’s nuclear royal commission will focus on uranium enrichment, power generation and waste storage, but has ruled out military uses or uranium mining.

The State Government has released the draft terms of reference for public comment until 13 March, before the Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission formally starts.

Premier Jay Weatherill said the issue had already generated healthy debate within the community, which is why the inquiry’s scope remained broad.

“Most people have a strong view on the nuclear industry and more than 300 people have made submissions on how to scope the terms of reference,” Mr Weatherill said.

“This initial feedback has been very broad, which is why we have kept the draft terms of reference quite general but focusing on the three key areas of uranium enrichment, nuclear power generation and waste storage.

“We have explicitly ruled out the use of nuclear for military purposes as we have also ruled out retracting from our involvement in the mining of uranium.”

Mr Weatherill said public consultation was “critically important” and encouraged involvement from remote, regional and Aboriginal communities.

“We need an informed and mature debate about the opportunities and risks of South Australia’s involvement in the mining, enrichment, energy and storage phases for the peaceful use of nuclear energy.”

Feedback is open on yoursay.sa.gov.au.