Michelle Lensink

Nuclear dump consultation process

I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking the Leader of the Government questions regarding the government's nuclear dump consultation process.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (14:23): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking
the Leader of the Government questions regarding the government's nuclear dump consultation
process.
Leave granted.
The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK:
On 7 July this year, the Treasurer issued a media release
committing $4.6 million to fund the consultation process on the Premier's high-level international
nuclear waste dump. In this week's government response to the Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal
Commission, the anticipated cost is now $8.2 million for 2016-17. My questions for the minister are:

1. How much taxpayer funding does the government intend wasting in its pursuit of this issue?

2. How long will the consultation process go on for, given that it clearly does not have the support of either the parliament or of the South Australian community?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Employment, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and
Reconciliation, Minister for Manufacturing and Innovation, Minister for Automotive
Transformation, Minister for Science and Information Economy) (14:24):
I thank the honourable
member for her questions. In relation to exact figures, I can refer them to the Treasurer in the other
place and bring back a reply. In relation to the process, I am not sure it could be much clearer: the
prerequisite for this going further is bipartisan support. There isn't bipartisan support. If there ever
was, the Premier has outlined that there would be a referendum and that Aboriginal communities
would have a right of veto. I don't know why the Deputy Leader of the Opposition in this chamber
finds it so difficult to understand something so simple.
Members interjecting:
The PRESIDENT:
Order!

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (14:24): Supplementary: if the matter is not to continue, then
why is your government pursuing this issue of a referendum?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Employment, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and
Reconciliation, Minister for Manufacturing and Innovation, Minister for Automotive
Transformation, Minister for Science and Information Economy) (14:24):
You've asked exactly
the same question. I have said the prerequisite—

The PRESIDENT: Minister, on your feet. Answer the question on your feet. Don't answer it
from sitting.
The Hon. K.J. MAHER:
I thank the honourable member for the exact same question, and
my answer from the previous one stands.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS (14:25): Supplementary: is the bipartisan support for the conduct
of a referendum or for the concept of a high-level nuclear waste dump?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Employment, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and
Reconciliation, Minister for Manufacturing and Innovation, Minister for Automotive
Transformation, Minister for Science and Information Economy) (14:25):
The Premier has been
quite clear that for any further steps, which would be a referendum, it needs bipartisan support.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS (14:25): Supplementary: is it for the conduct of a referendum or
for support for a nuclear waste dump of a high level?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Employment, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and
Reconciliation, Minister for Manufacturing and Innovation, Minister for Automotive
Transformation, Minister for Science and Information Economy) (14:25):
Again, I don't see how
such a simple answer is so difficult to understand. The Premier has been quite clear that there won't
be a referendum without bipartisan support.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (14:25): Supplementary: perhaps because some of us would
like to have this clarified, what are the conditions under which this government will conduct a
referendum on this issue?
The Hon. P. Malinauskas interjecting:

The PRESIDENT: Order! Will the honourable Minister for Police show a little more respect
in the member's right to ask a question.

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Employment, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and
Reconciliation, Minister for Manufacturing and Innovation, Minister for Automotive
Transformation, Minister for Science and Information Economy) (14:25):
Mr President, this will
probably be the last time I will get up and say exactly the same thing to exactly the same question—
bipartisan support. Easy.

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