Monday, June 05, 2006

las posta

i'm gonna let this blog die i think... al

Monday, February 20, 2006

comment on perth indy

I doubt yr on crack netto, but...

So many questions. Heres 2 answers...

1. There has never ever been at any time in history anything that even resembled a so-called "Free Press". Media is, and has always been, owned by someone or other. And all that paper and ink cost far too much. Journalists cost too much. etc. All information is controlled in some way or another.

The notion of Open Source, however, is a necessary evolution in information sharing.

Its time to live the change you want to see. Don't get trapped in the conspiracy of EVERTHING. All things are conspiratoral to some degree or another. You'll hurt yr brain if you look too deep.

Sometimes when doing research you look so far into something, that you forget what it was you were looking for.

2. Anyone who is either misinformed or seeks to exploit others for their own profit will always condone and/or perpetuate random (or orchestrated) acts of racism.

Nothing surprises me anymore. Except that folks are surprised at the fallout of rampant capitalist behaviour.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Aboriginal Sovereignty Day Declared

Aboriginal Sovereignty Day Declared

January 27, 2006

Representatives of Australian Aboriginal Sovereign Nations at a gathering in Canberra, have declared that the 26th of January would be known as Aboriginal Sovereignty Day. January 26th (Australia Day) is Australia's official national day - commemorating the landing of the First Fleet in Sydney Cove in 1788.

While the rest of the country celebrated the Australia Day holiday with medals, barbecues, fireworks and beer under the Union Jack, hundreds of people at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy in Canberra lit a ceremonial fire and discussed the land that once belonged to their ancestors.

Indigenous Australians communities, past and present

Indigeneous Elders have gathered this week at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy for the Corroboree for Sovereignty convergence, in response to what they say is the continual Government threat to control the historical Tent Embassy site.

The gathering identified the 34 year-old Tent Embassy on the grounds of Old Parliament House in Canberra, as a significant place of social, spiritual and political importance to Aboriginal Peoples - a symbol of the assertion of Aboriginal Sovereignty. The Aboriginal Embassy, not considered an official embassy by the Australian government, has come under review recently in a bid to remove the campsite and dwellings originally founded on Australia Day in 1972.

The Tent Embassy calls on all Aboriginal Sovereign Nations to "stand up against the illegal occupation of our country and continue to resist the oppression of our people." The Tent Embassy say that "until there is true justice for our people, these issues will not go away and we will continue to resist."

Members of the Embassy will take a sacred fire to Melbourne in March for the 2006 "Stolenwealth Games" campaign, in an effort to highlight the plight of Aboriginal people. The fire will contain a "message of peace, healing and justice, and create a focal point for unfinished business."

The group calls on all Aboriginal Nations to send representatives to the Embassy to commemorate and review the issues of Land Rights in Australia. The Tent Embassy also announced the establishment of the National Tribal Law Council.

"Invasion Day"

Indigenous leaders, including Marji Thorpe, Gary Foley, Robbie Thorpe and Michael Mansell claim that Native Title and Reconciliation haven't adequately addressed Indigenous rights. They say: "Native Title has mainly embroiled Indigenous peoples in complex legal processes where they have (generally unsuccessfully) had to prove their fundamental human rights to the land."

The campaigners, known as the Black GST, say the process "puts the onus on Indigenous peoples to somehow prove continuous connection with their land, an impossible task in many situations given the effects of our dispossession and attempted genocide."

On Australia Day the diverse and vibrant group marched peacefully through Canberra, gathered at the Embassy on the lawns in front of Old Parliament House and called for recognition of indigenous sovereignty over the land.

Australain Aboriginal Flag

"We're wanting to let all the people know that all the land in Australia has been given back to the Aboriginal people... and the sovereignty now lies with all Aboriginal nations," a spokesperson Robert Corowa said at the Embassy.

To many Indigenous and Non-Indigenous people, Australia Day was is labelled "Invasion Day" - in recognition of the colonisation of the continent by the British, he said. "We call it invasion day. The most important thing is that everybody in Australia who's now living here... we strongly encourage them to come to the Aboriginal Tent Embassy and place a leaf in our fire."

Legal director of the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre (TAC), Michael Mansell, says the current Australia Day celebrations should be scrapped and a new national day chosen. Mansell said Australia Day would forever remain a racist blot on Australia's political landscape as long as the event was held on the anniversary of the landing of the First Fleet.

"There can never be reconciliation between whites and Aborigines so long as the anniversary of the coming of white people is the basis for celebrating Australia Day," he said. "A fair and just society cannot be built on celebrating gains by one race at the expense of another."

Mr Mansell has also reported the theft of an Aboriginal sign from the TAC premises. The sign reading: "AUSTRALIA DAY Yes, let’s celebrate: MURDER, INVASION, RAPE, THEFT" was removed on the 25th of January hours after being installed on the Launceston premises.

Mansell says that he will replace the sign in an effort to "the obvious need to expose the myth, as expressed in the national anthem, that Australia is a free and fair country" and called for "white society" to punish the offenders.

"This is another instance of the continuing trend in Tasmania of racist attacks on both people and property by extreme elements of white society who don't like the truth, who don't like Aborigines and other races. As with the racial attacks on middle Eastern people in Sydney, these Tasmanian incidents show how Australia under the Howard government is becoming more openly xenophobic," he said.

Flag Burning

Activists in Brisbane yesterday burned an Australian flag to protest against celebrations marking European settlement in Australia. Around 300 protesters staged an "Invasion Day" demonstration. Queensland Premier Peter Beattie condemned the action.

"I don't care whether they're black or white ... I don't believe we should burn the Australian flag, particularly at this time (when) we all know we live in an unsettled world," he said.

One protester said he believed the wrong flag had been burned: "I just felt deep down that it should have been the British flag they burnt not the Australian one."

Compulsory National Anthem

The Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre has strongly opposed the compulsory singing of the Australian national anthem in schools.

NSW Premier Morris Iemma wants to make it compulsory for NSW schoolchildren to sing the national anthem each day before class. The plan has strong support from both sides of Parliament in Tasmania as well as the Multicultural Council of Australia and the Australian National Flag Association.

However some Aboriginal support groups say forcing the singing of the national anthem diminishes individual enthusiasm for participation.

Michael Mansell says, "more importantly, the anthem is about the white people and immigrants and excludes Aborigines." He said the words "for we are young and free" were a clear reference to the last 200 years of colonisation by Europeans and dismissed the ownership of the country by Aboriginal people.


West Papuans refugees forced to fly 4000ks despite tuberculosis fears

West Papuans refugees forced to fly 4000ks despite tuberculosis fears

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!

January 27, 2006

West Papuan asylum seekers who arrived in Australia last week, were forced to make a 4000 kilometre journey to Christmas Island despite suspicions they had tuberculosis. The West Papuans were herded on to an RAAF Hercules last week and flown to Christmas Island.

Two of the group, a man and his child, have now been flown the 2,600 kilometres to Perth, Western Australia from the remote Indian Ocean island. Air force personnel had initially refused to fly them, concerned that the flight crew's health would be at risk.

"It's a complete farce, absurd" said one health official. "It has not only posed an unnecessary health risk, it has been hideously expensive."

The West Papuans were among a group of 43 refugees found last week on the far north-west coast of Cape York in Queensland. They had made a five-day journey from the Indonesian province in an outrigger canoe. They arrived with banners accusing Indonesia's military in the province ruled by Jakarta of genocide and intimidation. Their 25m traditional boat was fitted with an outboard motor and was flying the outlawed West Papuan flag.

Amid media scrutiny and the disapproval of the Indonesian Government, the boat people underwent health checks before being sent to Chrismas Island. X-rays and other medical examinations strongly indicated that at least one man had tuberculosis, yet the group were flown to Australia's Christmas Island Immigration Detention Centre.

Upon landing at the Island, health officials recommended the patients be transferred to Perth. However, the crew of the RAAF Hercules refused to take them, saying they were not "adequately equipped".

A Department of Immigration spokesman (DIMIA) said an alternative flight was arranged. "At this stage there has been no positive diagnosis for tuberculosis," the spokesman said.

The removal of the asylum seekers to Christmas Island has been met with fierce criticism from many refugee rights groups and opposition parties, who say it was impractical, potentially traumatising and hugely expensive. The Immigration Department says it has interviewed most of the asylum seekers but won't say if they have made formal asylum claims.


Rallies in Sydney, Melbourne, Darwin, Canberra and Brisbane were held this week, in support of the West Papuan asylum seekers. Refugee rights advocates protested the forced transfer to the remote Christmas Island facility.

Melbourne auxiliary bishop Hilton Deakin told about 130 people demonstrating outside DIMIA headquarters in Melbourne that, "we know that already the Indonesian authorities, in Canberra and beyond, are trying to get to them."

Yet the he Indonesian embassy in Canberra denied making any approach, saying: "I can guarantee that there has been no contact whatsoever, it hadn't been requested, it was never even sought."

But the Immigration Department has confirmed that "a junior delegation" from the embassy went to Weipa last Thursday seeking access to the asylum seekers. A spokesman for the Immigration Department said the Indonesians arrived in Weipa on Thursday but by then the Papuans had already been put on a plane for Christmas Island. The West Papuans were told they had a right to Indonesian consular assistance if they choose. "Not one has chosen to do so," the spokesman said.

"The majority of these 43 people are leaders for free expression and self-determination and possible independence because of the oppression from which they suffer," Bishop Deakin said. "Massacres, rapes and all the rest of it have gone on in that country for almost 30 years."

He called on the Australian Government to cancel its training program with the Indonesian military.

Democrats leader Lyn Allison said the Australian Government had "got it wrong on this issue". The 43 asylum seekers had been "whisked off" before they could tell their story, she said.

Greens Senator Kerry Nettle has called on the government to grant access to Papuan asylum seekers. The senator says they should not be in detention and they certainly should be allowed to communicate with the outside world.

Senator Nettle will go to Christmas Island this weekend to meet the imprisoned West Papuans. She said the immigration department is obligated under the Migration Act to allow her to meet them.

New Zealand Support

Meanwhile New Zealand Greens have offered to take the asylum seekers. "New Zealand can show the Howard government how to be compassionate, as we did back in 2001 when we took some Afghan asylum seekers from the Tampa," the New Zealand Green Party Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Keith Locke says.

"It is shocking that the West Papuan refugees, having survived 450 kilometres of open water in a flimsy craft, are now bundled off to a Christmas Island detention camp - well out of range of those Australians who wish to help them," he said.

"Under refugee law these Papuans deserve special consideration, having come directly from their claimed country of persecution, Indonesia, not via a third country, as is the case with most asylum seekers in this part of the world.

"The Papuans certain have a good prima facie case. I know from my own visit to West Papua last April that there is substantial and ongoing harassment of the local people, particularly those who assert their right to political self-determination," said Mr Locke.

On Friday last week Indonesian security forces shot dead one Papuan protester, and wounded two others, in the Paniai district, where the 43 asylum seekers originate.

Related Winews


Wednesday, January 25, 2006



* *



*Attn: News Editors, Political, Indigenous & Environment Reporters*

Kokatha women with traditional associations to the Yellabinna region will be meeting with the Minister of the Aboriginal Affairs Department at 10:00am Monday April 18^th , to appeal for help in further protection of the culturally important Yellabinna area including Yumbarra and Pureba Conservation Park. During the meeting they will be presenting him with a community-produced dot painting designed by a young Kokatha woman, Colleen Haseldine.

The meeting will highlight the community's support for an extension to the proposed Wilderness Protection Area/ for the Yellabinna region located north of Ceduna, the largest stretch of mallee wilderness in the world. Yellabinna is culturally significant and holds a richness of nature which is awe-inspiring. It is an area that holds deep significance for the local aboriginal people. Much of the traditional local culture is based on a deep connection with the land and its various formations. These sacred sites connect their dreaming stories.

"Total protection, no mining, controlled tourism for the whole of the area of Yellabinna, Yumbarra and Purbea. Our traditional tucker, medicine and sacred sites are out there. It's the last safe place for them. Without the extension of the protection area to include the whole area, this cultural heritage will be lost/." claimed Sue Haseldine, who traveled down from the state's far West coast for the meeting along with another Kokatha woman, Sheena Coleman, to make the presentation.

"The time has come for us to take care of the land, when the land is destroyed, there will be nothing. The land is part of our soul. We have to take responsibility to preserve and maintain the environment, because our future is reliant upon what the land produces. If we don't respect the land then it will not produce. Bush medicine, bush tucker and being able to practice our culture have economic values which are immeasurable." Added Sheena Coleman


Friday, October 28, 2005

Austalia breaches internationally recognised human rights

The impact of indefinite detention: the case to change Australia’s mandatory detention regime

In the case of children, Australia’s Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission reports that the average detention period for a child in immigration detention is one year, eight months and 11 days.

- There is no independent judicial review of detention
- the absence of any maximum statutory time limit;
- detention can be indefinite
- violates the right to liberty and security of persons due to its lack of a case by case examination...

Austalia breaches Internationally recognised human rights

By seeking asylum in Australia asylum-seekers are exercising an internationally recognised right to seek asylum.

In doing so, they hope to escape the persecution that forced them to leave their home countries and to find a country where their fundamental rights and human dignity will be respected.

However, asylum-seekers arriving without adequate documentation are subject to the provisions of the Migration Act, which imposes mandatory detention until a decision is made in their case.

They may be detained for a prolonged period, until they are recognised as refugees and released, or following a negative decision, removed or deported.

It is unacceptable that exercising the right to seek asylum in Australia from human rights abuses in other countries should be met with a system that further violates human rights, including administrative detention of a prolonged or indefinite period of time.

Breach of international law

Australia’s policy of mandatory non-reviewable detention places it in breach of several international human rights instruments.

Article 9 of the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Australia is a party, prohibits arbitrary detention and provides that a detained person must be able to take proceedings before a court that can determine the lawfulness of detention and order release where detention is unlawful.

The rights to liberty and freedom from arbitrary detention are also protected in Articles 3 (right to liberty) and 9 (prohibition on arbitrary detention) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Amnesty International is of the view that detention under Australia’s mandatory detention policy is arbitrary and thus in breach of the ICCPR.

As confirmed by recent High Court decisions, in some circumstances immigration detention in Australia can be of indefinite duration and with no reasonably foreseeable prospect for release.

Amnesty International considers that Australia is also in breach of key provisions of other international instruments, including the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child

"We came to a country we heard has human rights and freedom. We can’t believe what’s happening to us … We haven’t any human rights. We are just like animals. We do not have a normal life like a human. Our feeling is dead. Our thinking is dead. We are very sad about everything. We can’t smile." - Ibrahim Ishreti

Ibrahim Ishreti fled persecution in search of safety in Australia. His hope for freedom turned into more than four years of detention, bridging visas, bureaucracy and despair. He is among thousands of men, women and children who have been held for anywhere from six days to six years under Australia’s immigration detention regime.

The policy is inconsistent with Australia’s international human rights obligations.
In particular it violates the right to liberty and security of persons due to its lack of a case by case examination of the necessity and appropriateness of detention, consideration of a reasonable alternative to detention or access to independent review or an effective remedy.

The report provides an overview of the international human rights and refugee law obligations that apply to Australia’s detention of asylum-seekers and refugees and makes clear that Australia’s policy does not accord with international law and standards.

The report provides recommendations the implementation of which would put an end to the indefinite detention of rejected asylum-seekers and would bring Australia’s treatment of refugees and asylum-seekers into line with its international obligations.

The impact of indefinite detention: the case to change Australia’s mandatory detention regime:

30 June 2005 - Amnesty International

something pink

Monday, October 24, 2005

John Howard Trust

2005 WA Spring Poetry Festival: spontaneous explosion of creative ideas, fresh poetry and the power of community

The 2005 WA Spring Poetry Festival: spontaneous explosion of creative ideas, fresh poetry and the power of community

Initially a flow on from the 2004 National Poetry Week activities, Coordinator Maureen Sexton met earlier this year with various Poetry organising folks from across Perth. With a view to seek ideas and energy for "Spring Poetry Month," many diverse events were planned throughout September 2005.

Keen to build a Poetry Festival for 2006, I initially came on board to help Maureen create a functional website [] and to offer support where I could. I've been participating in various art/poetry/music festivals and events over the last ten years or so, as well coordinator of many events both here and interstate.

When I saw the scale and diversity of events on offer - some 50 plus activities organised across September - I realised that this was indeed a "Festival" in its own right. However there was no decent funding. And little initial volunteer support. We quickly applied for funds from the City of Perth, who came to the party with some basic funding, venue and tech support. However it was Maureen and her partner, Lyn who held the fort miraculously intact and worked tirelessly to build the Festival bones into such a workable body.

Frances Macaulay Forde's poetry events in the Pages Cafe at the WA State Library were also well attended and provided ample opportunities for our poets to read their works. Non-stop thanks and appreciation must go to these very excellent women of Perth Poetry.

BUT massive respect also goes to EACH and EVERYONE who did anything whatsoever to make this year's festival into a workable model for the future.

The inaugural WA Spring Poetry Festival was a much-needed splash of energy for this state - indeed an opiate to the general state of poetic endeavor in this part of the country. Having been a guest in August at the 2005 Melbourne Overload Poetry Fest and the Queensland Poetry Festivals, it was good to realise that much to my surprise, Perth poetry is fresh, alive and cranking in 2005.

Whilst in Melbourne and Brisbane I talked up the idea of a WA Poetry Festival to many Australian poets and poetry organisers.

From my travels over the last few years to various arts, poetry and writerly festivals and events in the eastern states, it seems that many poets are quite keen to make the journey west, but nobody really knows about opportunities to read and distribute their work here. With 100s of chances to participate over the month, the WA Spring Poetry festival is an excellent excuse to get poets here.

As a result we had several talented poets travel over from Melbourne: Steve Smart, Meg Dunne, Amelia Walker and Kristen Turbett to name a few. There was also high levels of genuine interest from many other interstate poets from all over Australia to travel to WA for the 2006 festival.

For my main role in the WA Poetry Festival 2005 experiment, I built and maintained the Festival website, offered advice and helped where I could, including some of the Friday night events. The SubVerse readings were almost surreal inside the somewhat intimidating acoustics of the newly furbished Perth Town Hall.

Whilst not necessarily an ideal venue for poetry, much fun was had and crankin poems were heard throughout the various nights. It was beautiful to hear a poetry which is invigorated and charged with political energy.
Amongst the highlights for me were David Starr and Lois Olfry’s poems about Aboriginality and life in the North West; but also Viv Glance's powerful imagery in her performance piece based on the US invasion of Iraq.

I attended several events throughout the month and was generally impressed with the quality and diversity of poetry we have here in WA. I enjoyed the Poet Trees - a virtual mini-jungle of words in the Murray St Mall. I was also impressed by the positive public reaction to actual poetry at the accompanying "Poetrees Aloud" readings - as well as the enthusiastic responses to performing poems at the Speaker's Steps!

In particular the delivery and performance aspect of poetry appealed to me during the Festival. It is a beautiful thing to listen to the human voice; to embrace the sound and rhythms of poetry; to consume the meditation and passion of the human utterance.

In the 21st century - all-consumed by post-oral, mega-hyper, glossy-mud-media - we rarely take in the real poetry of each others voice and language. But, so it seems, there’s a plethora of WA poets keen to embrace the passion of poetry performance at the moment. I look forward to hearing/collaborating on more great stuff over the next 12 months as we build the 2006 festival events program.

The Festival was also a good opportunity to see the poetry community – as scattered and fragmented as it seems – to actually come together for such an event. September 2005 saw over 100 people read and perform their works in public, along with hundreds more participating in the “Poet Trees”, the Poetry Walls and other opportunities. In essence the festival has given Perth poets an untapped mass exposure for the normally disregarded genre of poetry.

Considering the current lack of Poetry Readings on offer in WA, besides WOW and Voicebox, there has been little opportunities for emerging and even established poets to read, perform and distribute their efforts around Perth. Throughout the month there were murmurings of potential new readings appearing in more Perth venues over the coming months.

Perth Poetry is alive and bangin I tells ya!

And the 2006 WASPF looks set to be an even bigger and better oiled series of poetic events. We are seeking more funding and gathering a team of interested people who want to contribute and participate in this ongoing project to bring Poetry to People – and People to Poetry!

Please let us know I you want to help...

NOTE: The website is now an ongoing, organic networking resource for WA poets and will eventually become a portal for West Aussie poetry for a long time to come.

Please send me suggestions as to how you think the website could be improved.

allan boyd - WASPF05 Team

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Mining Industry Pressure

[DRAFTING article - work in progress]


ANSTO: "The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation - the funky "ANSTO" - was established in 1953 as the Australian Atomic Energy Commission to promote the development of nuclear energy and associated technologies in Australia. An aggressive organisation, and has a long history of attempting to manipulate the nuclear debate in Australia. It has been in large part mostly responsible for the devastation at Rum Jungle during the 1950's to 1960's. The then AAEC dismissed it as a "minor local pollution problem" - just over 100 km of polluted environments...

ANSTO are purely a front for the uranium industry and they exist so Australia can maintain it's seat on the Executive of the IAEA (which we picked up in the 1950's for allowing nuclear devastation at Maralinga).
Rum Jungle

Ecological landslide fuels nuclear debate - By Paul Gilding - 29 August 2005

The Nuclear debate here in WA, the nation and indeed across the globe has increased intensity recently...

James Lovelock's Gaia theory inspired the Green movement. But as fossil fuels begin, literally, to cost the earth, he argues that nuclear power could save the planet... [James Lovelock Transcript][ The whole world in our hands ]

It seems the argument to to adopt Nuclear power plants to halt climate change and the rate of Global Warming, is gaining ground. Mining companies and industry lobby groups have been pushing hard to get uranium back on the governments agenda.

Nuclear power quietly confident in energy debate

Guardian report: The nuclear industry
Pre-empting debate
Yahoo News: Nuclear Power and Waste

Nuclear power was dead in the water - wildly expensive, deeply unpopular and a nightmare to clean up. But now the government is talking about a new generation of reactors. Can it really be the green answer to our energy needs? Back to the future

Federal and state governments are seeking to push the nuclear barrow: A standing commitee has been set up for the very task of reigniting the issue - Inquiry into developing Australia's non-fossil fuel energy industry.

"The Committee shall commence its inquiry with a case study into the strategic importance of Australia's uranium resources. The case study shall have particular regard to the:

1. global demand for Australia's uranium resources and associated supply issues;
2. strategic importance of Australia's uranium resources and any relevant industry developments;
3. potential implications for global greenhouse gas emission reductions from the further development and export of Australia's uranium resources; and
4. current structure and regulatory environment of the uranium mining sector (noting the work that has been undertaken by other inquiries and reviews on these issues).

Renewable Versus Nuclear Debate

"2005 will be remembered as the year the nuclear industry came back for one final swing. After a long decline, world uranium prices rose sharply during 2003 and are currently as high as they've been in decades. Combined with concerns about climate change, the industry believes it is set for a renaissance, and governments everywhere are talking it up. ANAWA

The Australian Government is using the climate crisis as a smokescreen for pushing for new uranium mines across the country. State ALP governments are under attack from within to reverse decades-long policies restricting industry expansion.

Australia: uranium minefield for the world?

Progress to opening new uranium mines in Australia has been slow, with Honeymoon and Jabilukaon the back burner and Ranger in danger of runnning out of resource. But the surge in world prices and decreasing stockpiles has given the government a sniff of profit and the propaganda has been relentless.

Thursday, October 13, 2005.
WA Govt under pressure to rethink uranium ban

Western Australia's leading mining group is keeping the pressure on the Labor State Government to overturn its ban on uranium mining. Several million dollars was wiped off the share prices of uranium companies with South Australian tenements after that State Government decided to block new uranium mines until 2010.

The Chamber of Minerals and Energy's David Parker says the WA Government needs to consider the impact of its opposition to uranium mining on the overall industry.

"We believe from a chamber perspective that the ban on uranium mining is at odds with the Government's aim of maximising the state's resources reserves and creates a high level of sovereign risk for investors holding exploration and mining leases," he said.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

MPs fail to support council nuclear-free zone call

Western Australian Opposition MPs have rejected calls for local councils to declare themselves nuclear-free zones.

Albany MLA Peter Watson wants local governments to amend their town planning schemes to prohibit nuclear activity.

His call is in response to the Liberal Party declaring its support for uranium mining in WA. The Liberal Member for Roe, Graham Jacobs, says his position on nuclear-free zones depends on what Mr Watson's definition of nuclear activity is.

"I would certainly oppose and reject any proposal to establish a nuclear waste dump in Western Australia or the electorate of Roe or anywhere else for that matter in Western Australia," he said. "So if that's the sort of nuclear activity he's talking about I would oppose that. Now, if you're talking, though, about uranium mining, that's another issue and that's not nuclear activity."

The Member for Stirling, the Nationals' Terry Redman, says he will not be following Mr Watson's lead by asking other councils in his electorate to declare themselves nuclear-free.

Mr Redman says it is important that there is a community debate on uranium mining and nuclear activities. "There's a whole heap of hype out there and there are a number of people who are not informed about the real issues and I think it's important that we do promote that to the community before people make a decision on these sorts of things," he said.

Nuclear power quietly confident in energy debate

ANSTO- The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) is Australia 's national nuclear research and development organisation and the centre of Australian nuclear expertise.

With a salaried staff of approximately 860, ANSTO is responsible for delivering specialised advice, scientific services and products to government, industry, academia and other research organisations. We do so through the development of new knowledge, delivery of quality services and support for business opportunities.

ANSTO's nuclear infrastructure includes the research reactor, HIFAR (High Flux Australian Reactor), particle accelerators, radiopharmaceutical production facilities, and a range of other unique research facilities. HIFAR is Australia 's only nuclear reactor. It is used to produce radioactive products for use in medicine and industry, as a source of neutron beams for scientific research and to irradiate silicon for semiconductor applications. A replacement for HIFAR, OPAL – the Open Pool Australian Light-water reactor – is in its final stages of construction.

ANSTO also operates the National Medical Cyclotron, an accelerator facility used to produce certain short-lived radioisotopes for nuclear medicine procedures. It is located in the grounds of the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Camperdown.

ANSTO also manages Australian synchrotron facilities at a number of overseas locations.

ANSTO's main site is located 40 km south west of Sydney 's central business district, occupies 70 hectares and is surrounded by a 1.6 km buffer zone.

ANSTO's general purpose is prescribed by the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987 and translated into action through corporate drivers of vision, mission and strategic goals.


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