The federal government should drop its plans for a national radioactive waste facility in regional South Australia after One Nation joined Labor, the Greens and others on the Senate crossbench in rejecting the government’s proposal for a site near Kimba.

One Nation confirmed it will not support the federal government’s bill to remove the right of affected communities to legally contest the decision to make Kimba the site for a radioactive waste facility and is instead seeking ‘to make the right decision for future generations’.

With Labor, the Greens, other crossbenchers and now One Nation opposed, the government appears to lack the numbers in the Senate to advance the plan.

“The federal plan is politically divisive, technically deficient and increasingly uncertain,” said the Australian Conservation Foundation’s nuclear campaigner Dave Sweeney.

“It has failed the test in the broader community and now also in Canberra.

“The government’s proposal is based on excluding people from consultation and review processes. It is based on the heavy handed overriding of legal principles and the unnecessary double handling of long-lived intermediate level waste.   

“Access to a day in court is a fundamental democratic right that should not be jettisoned – especially on an issue with such significant and lasting impacts as radioactive waste.

“Many state and national civil society groups, Aboriginal and professional groups, the South Australian Upper House, SA Labor and Unions SA opposed the government’s approach.

“The government should now stop playing politics and start paying attention.

“This waste lasts longer that any politician and needs to be responsibly managed.

“We need a new approach that is based on evidence, inclusion and respect.”

Read ACF’s 3-page background brief on the federal radioactive waste plans

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