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Has Howard made Australia Asia's nuclear mine, enricher and dump?

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Christine Milne

Australian Senate Australian Greens Senator for Tasmania

media release

Has Howard made Australia Asia’s nuclear mine, enricher and dump?

Canberra, Friday June 15, 2007 Australian Greens Climate Change Spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, is today calling on the Government to be open with the Australian people about their nuclear plans and whether they have committed Australia to a role as Asia’s nuclear mine, enricher and waste dump.

“The Howard Government is on record investigating the establishment of an Asian equivalent of EURATOM, managing the supply of uranium, its enrichment and its waste dump for Asia.

“What has Prime Minister Howard promised his APEC counterparts, including President Bush, that he is keeping secret from the Australian people? What has he promised the companies seeking to develop enrichment technology in Australia that he is keeping secret from the Australian people? Has he been talking to Urenco, the world’s biggest nuclear enrichment company?

“Minister Macfarlane has called repeatedly for a debate on nuclear technology. But there is a clear pattern emerging that the Government is moving ahead with plans to develop the industry without telling the Australian people.

“The worst possible outcome is for Australians to wake up the morning after returning a Howard Government and find that plans are well advanced for turning our country into a regional nuclear flashpoint.

“Enrichment technology is used equally for weapons production and fuel production. They two cannot be separated. Australia’s enrichment plans were sensibly stopped 20 years ago due to concerns that they would fuel a regional arms race. Today, those concerns are even more serious.”

Contact Tim Hollo on 0437 587 562