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AusIMM calls for a national discussion on Australian nuclear power industry

AusIMM has used its 14th International Uranium conference to call for a discussion of the opportunities open to Australia as a major uranium mining state, including the possibility of a nuclear power industry.

AusIMM President, Janine Herzig used her opening address at the Adelaide conference which has attracted distinguished speakers and international delegates, to reiterate the institutes support of uranium mining in Australia and praise the high professional standards of the Australian uranium industry and its people.

“AusIMM believes that the time has come for Australia to seriously discuss the professional employment opportunities involved in the formation of an Australian-based nuclear power industry as part of our national energy mix,” Ms Herzig said.

“Any such industry must be underpinned by the highest professional standards and accreditation. When it comes to uranium mining, we already have this knowledge in Australia, from technical skills to community engagement expertise.”

Stephen Durkin, AusIMM CEO echoed Ms Herzig’s sentiments, saying that there was a stigma attached to uranium that was holding back the discussion.

“Without pre-empting the findings of any such inquiry, we should at least be capable of having the conversation about possible opportunities,” Mr Durkin said.

“Given Australia’s rising power costs, lower energy security and desire to reduce emissions in power generation, it is time to explore the role that uranium could play in Australia’s energy supply.”

“We believe that professionals in the Australian resources sector are capable of contributing to, and driving this expansion of the nuclear power industry, when provided with the necessary support.”

The Conference was held on the 4-5 of June and covered uranium exploration, processing, mining, transport, environment, mine closure and rehabilitation, the use of uranium in the medical industry and power generation globally.

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