LNP Spilt Over Nuclear

The atom-splitting plans of federal Opposition leader Peter Dutton and his deputy David Littleproud have split their own party into federal and state factions, with very different views, particularly on possible nuclear power for the coal-fired Tarong power station, west of Gympie.

Tarong is in Mr Littleproud's Maranoa federal electorate, but also in the Nanango state electorate of LNP Shadow Energy Minister Deb Frecklington, who does not support the idea.

The nuclear option is intended to eliminate the need for energy storage systems, such as the Borumba Dam Pumped Hydro Electricity scheme, which is aimed at providing battery back-up for the variable output of renewables.

Nuclear would also eliminate the controversial powerlines currently planned to link Borumba to the Woolooga solar power precinct and the Tuan Forest wind turbine area.

A nuclear power station at Tarong would feed directly into existing powerlines and easements, as would the Woolooga solar and Tuan wind turbine facilities.

Ms Frecklingto n, whose electorate also includes the powerline impacted areas at Woolooga and Kilkivan, joined her leader David Crisafulli in saying nuclear was not on the party's agenda for the October state election.

Further complicating the power politics of the near-Gympie area, anti-powerline activist, shopkeeper and Kilkivan Action Group founder Katy McCallum told a public meeting at Imbil last weekend she would be running at the state election on behalf of Pauline Hanson's One Nation.

She told the meeting, attended by about 70 people concerned at both the Borumba scheme and its powerlines, she would run for the Gympie electorate, now held by the LNP's Tony Perrett.

This puts her at least slightly at odds with Mr Perrett's federal colleagues, Mr Littleproud and Gympie's Wide Bay federal MP Liew O'Brien, who have both recently backed her community campaign against the powerlines.

The meeting was also addressed by Mary Valley resident Glenda Pickersgill, of the Save the Mary River Co-ordinating Group and Jim Willmott, of Property Rights Australia.

Meanwhile Mr Perrett said the Borumba proposal still had to pass major assessments before it could be built.

He said the Capital Statement contained in the recent state budget said the project was still "subject to final approvals by the Queensland and Australian Governments.”

"It hasn't received Federal Government environmental approvals, it still hasn't received environmental approvals from the Office of the (state) Co-Ordinator General, and the government refuses to release the business case for the project," he said.

The projected $14.2 billion Borumba cost was not fixed and major government projects in Queensland "are routinely running at up to 30 per cent above budget," he said.

The government had refused to release the project's business case, its environmental approvals had been outstanding since June last year and the scheme would not be putting power into the grid until 2030, he said.

But a state government spokesperson said the project was still on schedule, even with ongoing environmental and other assessments.

Critics have said the project still has not received approval for its preliminary and exploratory projects.

The federal Coalition's nuclear plans appear to be more popular with voters than with the LNP's own state representatives .

Showing 1 reaction

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
  • One Nation
    published this page in News 2024-07-01 16:54:48 +1000