No nuclear waste dump groups from Kimba and the Flinders Ranges came together in Port Augusta last week in response to the recent announcement by federal Resources Minister Matt Canavan that a community vote for a planned national radioactive waste management facility would begin on August 20.
The groups discussed shared concerns and committed to increase their efforts against the plan including through an open debate featuring the federal department, the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), Traditional Owners and public policy and health professionals.
People at the meeting included Adnyamathanha community members, representatives from Kimba, Hawker, Whyalla and Quorn along with members of the Flinders Local Action Group and No Radioactive Waste on Agricultural Land in Kimba or SA.
Peter Woolford from Kimba said the “flawed federal process” was failing the communities.
“Minister Canavan is fast-tracking a plan that does not have broad community support”.
The groups committed to highlight community concern and opposition to the federal plan ahead of the August vote and urged residents in the wider region to stand up and speak out.
Former federal member for Grey Barry Wakelin said it was a national issue, “not something that a regional community should be left to deal with”.
“The current federal plan lacks evidence and poses a threat to our existing industries – we need a better way,” Mr Wakelin said.
“This has been a productive meeting and it is heartening to see regional South Australians stepping up to the challenge, taking action and working together.”