350.org Pacific responds to Australian Coalition nuclear plans

350.org Pacific

Canberra, Australia – Today Australia’s opposition leader, Peter Dutton announced a Coalition government’s future nuclear energy plans. Dutton named seven proposed sites for nuclear plants after boldly claiming the plan would cost less than Australia’s renewable energy development.

Nuclear power plants are currently banned in all states and territories in Australia. While the final cost has not been revealed, it is estimated that a nuclear power plant in Australia would cost at least $8.5 billion.

Jacynta Fa’amau, 350.org Pacific Campaigner says:

“This nuclear fantasy is a distraction from genuine climate action on Australia’s part. The Coalition claims to have the concerns of Australian people in mind, but we know for a fact that nuclear power is up to eight times more expensive than large-scale wind or solar power. As a Pacific Islander living in Australia, of course I want our government to meet their climate commitments and keep the hopes of the Paris Agreement alive. But swapping out one destructive energy source for another is not the answer. A “Just Transition” means no one is left behind and from what we’ve seen, coal workers have not been consulted, communities near proposed plant sites are worried, and the nuclear timeline does not keep us below the target of 1.5 degrees.”

Alisi Rabukawaqa, Pacific Climate Warriors Council Elder says:

“The Pacific has a painful and horrific nuclear history. Australia currently doesn’t have a place to store its nuclear waste, and finding a spot has proved difficult. Why gamble on a dangerous industry when they have access to safer solutions like wind and solar? The fact that we share an ocean with this Coalition means that we will have to pay close attention to Australia’s elections, and the direction that their energy transition takes.”

/Public Release.