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Sunday comment: nuclear power and Same Sex Bill.

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Australian Democrats Press Releases

Senator Lyn Allison Parliamentary Leader and Democrats Senator for Victoria Australian Democrats spokesperson for Energy and Resources

Dated: 04 June 2006

Press Release Number: slwjzbbb Portfolio: Energy and Resources Related: Environment & Animal Welfare Related: Sexuality Issues

Sunday Comment - Nuclear Power and Same Sex Bill

Sunday Comment

Nuclear power debate misleading Australians

Australian Democrats Leader Senator Lyn Allison said "The Prime Minister is misleading people with his narrow 'debate' on nuclear power. Ignoring other energy sources assumes nuclear power is the only option to address climate change. Research shows this is not the case.

"An inquiry by 'nuclear experts' that does not canvass all the options is irresponsible and divisive.

"We already know nuclear power can be as cheap as coal if the cost of storing the waste or decommissioning the reactor is not taken into account. We also know that coal is currently cheaper than wind and solar but only because the cost of CO2 emissions is ignored. A proper inquiry must take into account all the costs.

"Nuclear reactor site location has to be part of the debate. If speculation about reactor sites is 'scaremongering', how will decisions be made on their locations? Overriding the NT is not an option this time and so far none of the states is keen.

"Nuclear is not the 'here and now solution' Minister McFarlane suggests. It would take 10 to 15 years for nuclear power to be generated. US reactors commissioned in the 1970's took 20 years with ongoing delays.

"Waste storage is still a huge headache for the big nuclear power generators and cannot be said to be either safe or acceptable to the public.

"Action is needed now. There are immediate solutions in existing renewable technology and energy efficiency - neither of which leaves a legacy of intractable waste and neither of which has been seriously supported by governments in Australia.

"Before Australia "moves further down the nuclear cycle" we need to know what the optimum mix of energies should be by 2050 when greenhouse emissions must be reduced by 60%.

"The Democrats terms of reference for a comprehensive Senate inquiry into all energy options will be put to the Senate this month. Australians deserve all the facts and options."

Democrats support Warren Entsch's same sex bill will the PM?

The Democrats welcome Mr Entsch's bill to fix discrimination against same sex interdependent couples

in tax, superannuation, Medicare, veteran entitlements and social security and hope he wins a PM back flip. We've been moving amendments to legislation along these lines for years - all opposed so far by Government.