Resources Minister Josh Frydenberg is poised to release a shortlist of sites that could play host to a permanent nuclear waste storage facility in Australia.
Fairfax Media has been told the shortlist contains seven possible locations for the facility and had been finalised and approved by the Abbott government before Ian Macfarlane was replaced as Resources Minister by Mr Frydenberg.
The list of sites was originally scheduled to be released by August. Mr Frydenberg now intends to release the short list by the end of the year, after consulting with local MPs affected the decision, the opposition and other stakeholders over the politically sensitive issue.
Two locations in South Australia’s Kimba shire, west of Port Augusta, and two in Western Australia, at Leonora, north of Kalgoorlie and Yalgoo, north of Perth, have voluntarily nominated to be considered for the shortlist, while a proposal for the facility to be located at Mt Isa, in remote Queensland, was recently advanced. The full list of possible locations is a tightly held secret.
Once the shortlist has been released, a further period of public consultations will begin before a preferred site is identified in mid-2016, with a detailed business case due in mid-2017 and construction and operation of the facility due by the end of the decade.
The pending decision on the waste facility comes amid renewed debate on a possible future nuclear industry in Australia.
Date October 29, 2015, Sydney Herald – Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/seven-locations-make-nuclear-waste-dump-shortlist-20151029-gklxu4.html#ixzz3q4JnIcEJ