Wednesday, 23 June 2021
Statements by Members
National Radioactive Waste Management Facility
It is six years ago, plus a month or so, since I first raised the possibility of my home town, even my home paddock, hosting the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility. On Monday night in the Senate we made a great step towards this possible outcome. I thank my colleagues on the other side of the House for supporting the legislation. It took 12 months and it got through in a slightly amended form, but it gives us room to move on. Consequently, there are now three sites back under consideration but, given the government has given a firm commitment that we will not be building this facility in a community that does not want it, that virtually eliminates Wallerberdina in the Flinders Ranges Council area. The other two sites are in my home town of Kimba, in the district council area. The preferred side thus far has been Napandee, and I expect that's what the minister will nominate in good time. But there's a little way to go.
I would like to thank the successive ministers, Macfarlane, Frydenberg, Canavan and Pitt for their work. I would like to thank particularly the Kimba council and the Kimba community for the amount of work and effort and engagement they put into this. When we held our last full plebiscite of the district, there was a 90 per cent vote—which shows you just how engaged people are—with a 62 per cent approval rate. The community has suffered criticism for getting payments for their involvement. But they worked hard for this. They deserve to move ahead, and I congratulate all people concerned. (Time expired)