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Monday, 10 November 2008
Page: 93

Senator MILNE (9:38 PM) —I am not talking about the wider environment in terms of this; what I am asking is that there is an expert advisory panel in relation to the sites for which the Commonwealth has issued these site closure certificates and the pre-certificates and so on. We need to have ongoing environmental impact assessment by an expert panel, not under EPBC but in the same way as the committee recommended that there be these panels for other matters. What I am saying is that there must be an expert panel, because again this is going to determine liability. Of course nobody wants to have an expert environmental panel looking at the ongoing monitoring and the latest science and what is actually happening at that site. They would be very happy not to have one. But we want to have the minister being forced to actually have an expert advisory panel on the environmental impact of the storage sites as they currently stand at any time, regardless of who has got liability. Especially if the community ends up with the liability, it is even more imperative that the community knows what is going on at those sites.