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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 101


Senator VALLENTINE(8.44) —I support the Australian Democrats' amendments on this issue. It seems to me from what the Minister has just said that there will be very little independent monitoring of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation. The bureau should be monitored by an independent regulatory committee somewhat along the lines of the United States National Regulatory Commission, and all nuclear activities should be matters for public debate. Obviously we shall be dealt up more of the same that we have had before on all matters nuclear in Australia-more secrecy, more cover up, less public involvement than we have had in the past. Ideally, the Safety Review Committee should have an adversarial relationship with ANSTO to keep it on its toes. Of course there should be non-expert and local involvement in this Committee. It should also be non-male, I hasten to add, because I think that very much part of the problem that we have got ourselves into with the whole nuclear nightmare is that it has been dominated by so-called experts in a patriarchal method of organisation. The representation of the Safety Review Committee should ensure that it stays in touch with the outside world and its concerns and is not so inward looking as would be the kind of review committee that the Minister has just outlined.