18 March 2011 - Attempt by ACF to blame uranium industry for Fukushima crisis opportunistic nonsense

 

STATEMENT FROM THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

OF THE AUSTRALIAN URANIUM ASSOCIATION, MICHAEL ANGWIN

 

The attempt by the Australian Conservation Foundation to blame the Australian uranium industry for the nuclear emergency in Japan represents opportunism in the midst of human tragedy.

The Australian uranium industry has led the global nuclear industry’s efforts to create a framework of stewardship for the safe and responsible management of uranium throughout the nuclear fuel cycle. 

We have a very good appreciation of what our responsibilities are and we have done much to reflect that in practice, globally and locally. The progress we have made so far has been good and we are conscious of the challenge that lies ahead of us.

Last weekend we heard the ACF say Australians collectively were “morally culpable” for the Fukushima crisis. That language was too strong even for the ACF and they backed away from it in subsequent statements.  

Now, apparently, it is only Australian uranium companies who are, to quote the ACF, ‘potentially responsible’ for Fukushima, whatever that means.

But the ACF is still trying to blame Australian uranium companies. This is utter nonsense.

The ACF has no concerns beyond its own cause. It’s just showing its usual behaviour, find a platform and exploit it to the fullest at a moment’s notice whatever the circumstances.

The situation at Fukushima is serious, uncertain and very worrying. The management of the plant and the government of Japan, with assistance from other nations, appear to be doing all they can to manage the emergency.

We remain hopeful that the Fukushima plant will be made safe as soon as possible.

We do not believe it is helpful to the resolution of the crisis to speculate about either its causes or its future course. And we strongly urge the ACF to take the same view or find a constructive way to contribute. Otherwise, they should remain silent until they have something productive to say.