Good news for facility host
The good news for the ultimate host of the National Radioactive Waste Facility keeps rolling in.
A $2 million Community Benefits Fund for local social, health, education, agriculture, sporting and economic projects being rolled out right now.
The site charecterisation works of the past few months is bringing money into the community through work, machinery hire, fuel, accommodation and catering.
The government office that’s been staffed over the last 18 months is bringing in money for office hire, wages, accommodation and catering.
And if Kimba is fortunate enough to be the nation’s host for Australia’s low level radioactive waste disposal and intermediate level storage a construction period worth over $200 million and all the jobs that will create.
Then the operational stage with a minimum of 45 jobs.
Jobs for my family and grandkids, for my neighbours and friends.
A chance for some of the over 40 houses for sale in Kimba to find new owners.
What a win for Kimba and the whole surrounding region!
Puzzled by locations chosen
Having followed the nuclear waste issue ever since Jay Weatherill promoted his high level facility plan I am reasonably aware of the pros and cons of nuclear waste disposal requirements.
What puzzles me is the two locations chosen for the federal governments low to intermediate level facility.
It is almost as if a dart was thrown at a map on the wall.
Look at a map of SA and you will see that north west of Kimba, following the east west railway line, there is a vast uninhabited area with no farming or grazing.
What would be wrong with establishing a mining style village just South of this line and operate on a fly in fly out basis.
Recalling that Roxby Downs was often referred to as ‘Kimba North’ there would be merit in making Kimba the supply center or base station for the project.
Given that influential people to the East are again calling for SA to take the world’s high level waste, do we really believe that the federal government would spend more millions building a separate facility when in fact they will already have one capable of handling such waste in Kimba?
And lets face it, international agencies class intermediate level waste at just a fraction under high level waste.
If that happens, perhaps all of the wonderful goodies currently being splashed around will be badly tarnished by the fact that today's generation, blinded by a federal government cash splash, might be creating a worrying legacy for the children and grandchildren who follow.
Great opportunity for Kimba
Recently I had the opportunity to visit the Australian Nuclear Science Technology Organisation (ANSTO) with a group of 21 other residents from Kimba.
The visit enabled me to gain further understanding of the work carried out in nuclear research and medicine and most importantly the radioactive waste.
We first learnt there was no risk to the environment.
This was most evident because ANSTO is in the middle of a huge Sydney suburb in walking distance from a child minding centre , parks and gardens.
The minister’s agriculture round table meeting on June 12 also confirmed this when at the discussion, all agriculture department members were informed that because of the regulatory frame work and the environmental monitoring of the facility there would be no threat to the cropping or any other farming activity.
About 50 years of low level waste is housed at the facility and we were shown how it is packed into drums and eventually compacted before being consolidated into concrete.
Much of Australia's radioactive waste is the result of producing life-saving medicines and we were told that over 500,000 doses of nuclear medicine are administered each year in Australia and the waste is generated from the sterilisation of equipment, surgical instruments, dressings and gloves.
I am confident that if Kimba is chosen to host this facility the independent regulator ARPANSA will have strict control over the facility and no radiation exposure would be possible beyond the facility.
A key aspect of the project is the incredible local economy benefits from the proximity of the facility and the long term employment and contracts that will become available to locals.
The cost of the construction for the waste facility is around $200 million plus and the local community will benefit enormously after receiving significant financial benefits even in the period before the financial investment is made.
A low level nuclear waste disposal and intermediate storage facility for Australia’s waste would turn Kimba into an economic power house – and all residents should embrace this proposal whilst we have the opportunity.
With this installation in our district, Kimba will always have access to federal funds that will provide economic security for our children to draw on to continue developing this great district for many years to come.
Think about it – don't let this opportunity slip by. There is no risk.