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Thursday, 13 October 1955

Mr BEALE (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Supply) - In the first part of the question I think the honorable member made a slip of the tongue when he referred to the uranium development agency; I think he meant the Combined Development Agency. We can assume that stocks of uranium oxide have been accumulated by the agency, which means by the British and American Governments, but the Government has no information which suggests that any such stockpiles will have any effect on the future prices of Australian uranium oxide. The second question, I think, related to information as to the progress of the development of industrial atomic energy in Great Britain and the United States. As to Great Britain - I think I covered this in a statement that I made to the House the other night - there is now a £300,000,000 ten-year programme for the building of industrial reactors in Great Britain. The first of these reactors - the one at Calder Hall - will be ready some time next year and will feed upwards of 50,000 kilowatts of electric power into the British electric authority's system. That is to be followed, I think, by fourteen or fifteen further reactors over the next ten years or so, developing until in due course almost the whole of the British electrical system is generated by nuclear power. That is a very ambitious and dramatic programme, necessitated by the shortage of coal fuel in Great Britain. That is in addition to the various research reactors which are operating for testing and research purposes in the British Isles. In Canada, in addition to the research reactor programme, a power reactor is now being built in the State of Ontario by the Canadian General Electric Company in conjunction with the Canadian

Atomic Energy Authority. That will be operated by the Ontario Provincial Authority and that, again, will feed power into the Canadian grid. In the United States of America an enormous research and development programme is being conducted. There are probably over twenty reactors in the United States. They have planned for six or seven power reactors-

Mr Calwell - I rise to order. The honorable gentleman has been asked a question. He is delivering a lecture on power reactors and what is happening in Canada and the United States. He is interfering with the rights of honorable members to ask questions. I wish he would follow the example of his leader.

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