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Question: Does Labor support a Nuclear Waste Dump in SA?

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS (14:50): Under standing order 107, I seek leave to make a brief explanation before addressing a question to the leader of the Labor opposition on the subject of nuclear waste dumps in South Australia.

Leave granted.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS: After most in our community in this state thought that the matter was finally dead and buried, a new bid to put a nuclear waste dump in our state has emerged in recent days, with the federal Labor opposition confirming it will back the federal government's bid to establish such a storage site for radioactive waste in our state, indeed identifying three sites, with every single site being in South Australia.

I note those sites that have been identified have previously been opposed to a dump in their community and particularly traditional owners' voices have said no. When the then Premier Rann was in a position of leadership of the Labor Party, I note his words in the other place where he said:

In recent days, attempts have been made to reignite debate about where Australia's nuclear waste should be stored. There have been efforts by our northern neighbours—the Northern Territory—to have the federal government revisit their decision to place Australia's nuclear waste at Muckaty Station in the [NT]. In this government's first term, we fought against the nation's nuclear waste being dumped in South Australia and we won.

He goes on to say:

But we did not lie down; we put our state first. We fought and we fought and we fought.

Of course, at that time we thought that they won. However, now, through the federal Labor Party opening the door and allowing for judicial review, those traditional owners who have repeatedly said no to a nuclear waste dump in our state have had their words yet again ignored. I note that the Leader of the Opposition in this place has maintained previously that traditional owners should have a so-called right of veto. Indeed, shadow ministers of the Malinauskas opposition have put that in writing in media statements in recent years. My question is: how many times must traditional owners in this state—

The Hon. I.K. HUNTER: Point of order, Mr President.

The PRESIDENT: The honourable member will resume her seat. Point of order.

The Hon. I.K. HUNTER: My point of order is the honourable member has directed a question to the Leader of the Opposition on an area that is nowhere near his portfolio responsibilities. How can he be held accountable for the federal opposition?

The PRESIDENT: I am going to let the honourable member finish her question and then I am going to go to standing order 107.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS: Indeed. How many times must traditional owners in this state say no before the South Australian Labor Party will have their back, as they did in the days of Mike Rann, and stop this question being repeatedly and relentlessly asked of them?

The PRESIDENT: Before calling the Leader of the Opposition, or giving him the opportunity to respond, standing order 107 says:

At the time of giving Notices, Questions may be put to a Minister of the Crown relating to public affairs; and to other Members, relating to any Bill, Motion, or other public matter connected with the business of the Council, in which such Members may be specially concerned.

So with that being said, or reminding members of that, I give the Leader of the Opposition the opportunity to respond if he wishes given that, under the question, it is hard to say that it is to do with the business of the council. But I provide the opportunity to the Leader of the Opposition. He wishes not to answer. I move on to the Hon. Mr Hanson.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS: Point of order: referring to that standing order, I would note that we have legislation of this parliament that rules out debate on such a nuclear waste dump, but also, given the federal moves, our ERD Committee will need to consider this matter and Labor will need to make their position clear and not go behind people's backs with weasel words.

The Hon. I.K. Hunter interjecting:

The PRESIDENT: Order! We won't have debate in the point of order. I do understand the role of the Environment, Resources and Development Committee at a certain stage, and I don't believe that stage has been reached yet. The Leader of the Opposition has had the opportunity to respond; he wishes not to. I am going to move on to the Hon. Mr Hanson.

Members interjecting:

The PRESIDENT: Order! Conversation is not helpful. The Hon. Mr Hanson is on his feet and has the call.

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