Western Australia Labor Party would ban uranium mining
Western Australia’s Labor Party says it will ban uranium mining if it gets elected in 2013. The announcement came Friday in the form of a motion by state AMWU secretary Steve McCartney.
The move is set to anger Federal Resource Minister Martin Ferguson, who called the policy ridiculous last month, warning the position is not sustainable and means the state will miss out on funds for schools, education and roads.
But state Labor leader Eric Ripper says the Federal Government needs to understand Western Australia is different to the rest of the country.
“We have our own views on issues particularly as they concern the interests of Western Australia and we won’t hesitate to stand up for the interests of this state even if that does mean disagreement with Federal Labor,” he said before the conference.
Western Australia is not the only Australian state to voice opposition to uranium mining.
On the pro-side, an Australian Mining article says that the Australian Worker Union (AWU) will lobby governments to expand mining and overturn bans. On the other side, the Electrical Trades Union (ETU), which mostly represents electrical, communications and power industry workers, says it will oppose the expansion of uranium mining in Australia, citing safety concerns around exposure to radiation.
Uranium mining is prohibited in Victoria and New South Wales, while in Queensland, exploration is permitted but extraction is illegal. South Australia and the Northern Territory are the only regions to permit uranium mining, and it was recently legalized in Western Australia.