The Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission was established by the South Australian Government to undertake an independent and comprehensive investigation into South Australia’s participation in four areas of activity that form part of the nuclear fuel cycle.
Adelaide Law School’s Public Law and Policy Research Unit made a submission to the Commission, specifically relating to Issue Paper 4: Management, Storage and Disposal of Nuclear and Radioactive Waste.
The submission was a collaboration between Mr John Podgorelec, an International Human Rights Lawyer currently based in Adelaide, and Dr Peter Burdon and Dr Alexandra Wawryk of the Adelaide Law School.
In this submission it was argued that any facility for the disposal and/or management of nuclear waste, which would most likely be sourced in remote regions of South Australia, requires the free, prior and informed consent of indigenous peoples on whose traditional lands such a facility might be sited. The submission is based on relevant international law relating to the rights of indigenous peoples.
It states that only when there is confidence among the indigenous and broader South Australian community that international standards relating to the rights of indigenous people are met, and all risks can be properly identified, explained and addressed that consent to a facility, if gained, is informed and genuine.
A full copy of the submission can be read here.
This submission has been circulated and warmly received not only among the Adelaide Law School, but also by one of the principle Lawyers who worked on the world’s two major international treaties on human rights; the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant Economic and Social Rights.
The School will keep you informed of any progress relating to its submission.