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Inquiry into the prerequisites for nuclear energy in Australia Submission

September 16, 2019

  1. Unions Tasmania has a long and proud history of advocating for working people in Tasmania. Initially established as the Trades and Labor Council of Hobart in 1883, and now operating as Unions Tasmania, there is no other Tasmanian peak body dedicated to giving a voice to working people.
  2. Unions Tasmania is comprised of 24 affiliate unions with approximately 50,000 members. We represent members across all industries, in the private and public sector. We welcome this opportunity to make a submission to the Inquiry into the prerequisites for nuclear energy in Australia.
  3. Unions Tasmania is a signatory to the civil society Joint Statement on Nuclear Power and we join our voice to those of peak environmental and faith organisations in opposing the establishment of a nuclear power industry in Australia for the reasons contained in that statement.
  4. Our nation is experiencing an entirely unplanned and uncontrolled energy transition. Against a backdrop of increasing climate impacts and scientific evidence the need for a clean and renewable energy transition is clear and irrefutable. Australia is transitioning from fossil fuels to low carbon electricity generation, but this transition is being denied, and in some cases obstructed by Government.
  5. Australia urgently needs the Federal Government to create an Energy Transition Authority responsible for navigating Australia’s energy transition to a clean-energy economy and to plan for and protect the workers and communities from being left behind in that transition.
  6. Nuclear power is a dangerous and unnecessary distraction from the real movement on the pressing energy decisions and climate actions Australia desperately needs as outlined above.
  7. Unions Tasmania submits that the time and political energy currently being expended on nuclear energy as a solution would be much better spent invested in examining a just transition to renewables for workers and their communities. Australians would be better served by establishing a parliamentary inquiry into why the Government still has no discernible, cogent energy policy after six years in government.
  8. Unions Tasmania urges the committee to reject the establishment of a nuclear power industry in Australia.

Unions Tasmania Submission to Standing Committee on Environment and Energy's Inquiry into the prerequisites for nuclear energy in Australia.pdf

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