Archive for January, 2021

ANSTO’s Dr Adi Paterson signed Australia up to New Nuclear club with NO Parliamentary discussion!

January 4, 2021

(Parliament Hansard) ECONOMICS LEGISLATION COMMITTEE;fileType=application/pdf   31st May 2017

ANSTO  ……..

Senator LUDLAM: ……. Dr Paterson, we have become aware through the JSCOT process that in June 2016 you signed the 2005 Framework Agreement for International Collaboration on Research and Development of Generation IV Nuclear Energy Systems. I have a couple of quick questions on this. Nuclear power reactors are actually prohibited in Australia under national law, so under what authority did you sign an agreement to promote research and development on nuclear reactors?

Dr Paterson: In signing that agreement, we had been through a process of discussion with the department and with the relevant ministers, indicating that, in order to retain appropriate knowledge about the future of nuclear power globally, it would be a virtuous outcome to join the Generation IV International Forum…….

It is the job of ANSTO not to provide advocacy for nuclear power in Australia but to provide knowledge that protects us from poor decisions and provides us with a seat at the table at the International Atomic Energy Agency, because we are—

Senator LUDLAM: We already have that. With great respect, we already have that seat.

Dr Paterson: Yes.

Senator LUDLAM: We did not have to sign the gen IV agreement to retain our seat at the IAEA.

Dr Paterson: It was one of my proudest moments as the CEO of ANSTO to sign that agreement, and we are now going through the treaty process. I think it is the right thing to do for Australia.

Senator LUDLAM: Were there any additional costs over and above participation?
Dr Paterson: The cost of membership will be of the order of $100,000. We are drawing on the knowledge base and the work that we already do as ANSTO, so we will not be developing significant new program capabilities to do this. We have not asked government to fund that $100,000; we are absorbing it in our appropriation.

Senator LUDLAM: That is absorbed? Okay.