Sneaky approval of questionable Kintyre uranium proposal

Wednesday, 4 March

Environment Minister Albert Jacob’s overnight approval of the Kintyre Uranium mine proposal was wrong on every level and should be immediately rescinded, according to WA Greens Uranium Spokesperson Robin Chapple MLC.

Mr Chapple said it was an inappropriate given the Office of Regional Indigenous Corporations (ORIC) was still investigating allegations of corruption into the Western Desert Lands Aboriginal Corporation’s (WDLAC).

“The Minister should not have made any decision until the position of the Martu people, with regards to a Uranium mine on their lands, had been absolutely clarified,” he said.

“Instead what Mr Jacob has done is slip this through quietly overnight with complete disregard for the investigation, or the mountain of appeals he has received in opposition.”

Mr Chapple said aside from potential legal ramifications the Kintyre proposal was a major environmental threat to the region’s unique desert environment and lacked the bipartisan political or broader public support necessary to validate its approval.

“This is yet another example of our government’s throwing its weight behind a rapidly ageing industry that will lock WA into an unsustainable future,” he said.

“This proposal will directly threaten the Karlamilyi National Park, the Karlamilyi River water catchment and the many threatened native flora and fauna species that inhabit this unique desert environment.

“To top it off the minister has recommended there should be no rehabilitation bonds, a move that could see liability for the clean-up of this mine fall on the taxpayer and not the company behind the proposal.

“Cameco have an appalling environmental record and are soon to face court in the USA and Canada over allegations of tax avoidance, yet we want to trust them to mine this dangerous mineral in such a fragile part of our state.”

Mr Chapple said issues raised by environmental and Indigenous groups had fallen on deaf ears.

“Appeals submitted on the basis of threats to groundwater, radiological uptake by native flora, the lack of baseline studies and commitments to monitoring in key areas have been dismissed,” he said.

“If this proposal ever wants to see the light of day it needs to be taken right back to step one and properly assessed.”

 

For comment please contact Robin Chapple on 0409 379 263 or 9486 8255.

Media liaison: Tim Oliver           

Mobile: 0431 9696 25

 

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