The Former defence force chief Peter Cosgrove has pleaded for Australia to embrace nuclear power, criticising the “daily scrapping” between politicians about climate change.
Addressing a business breakfast in Perth, General Cosgrove said strong action was crucial and it was “almost immoral” to export uranium to less technologically advanced and stable countries to use in nuclear power plants while refusing to have one in Australia:
We’ll give you the stuff but we won’t use it ourselves; I find that difficult to comprehend.
We’re a rich and technologically advanced nation sitting in a geologically stable continent, so surely we can expect to build and operate safely a nuclear power station.
The government of the day and the opposition are extraordinarily sensitive to the forthcoming federal election,
The prism of the election and the need to retain or gain government starts to flavour agenda and actions. The will gets eroded and the intent gets blurred.
I really don’t know if all I have been told is true and if we may be at risk of quite catastrophic climate change outcomes during the life of grandkids . . . but I am very uneasy about dicing with their future.
If at the end of 50 years the last sceptic leaps to his feet on his zimmer frame and says `I told you so’ – and we’ve spent all this money for no great effect – then think of the obverse. Think of the people of Tuvalu now settling into Marrickville, Sydney . . . because their beautiful island is gone.
We can’t have governments and oppositions daily scrapping over the concerted action we need to take across the national community. We need to start action now to avoid the climate change noose.
If there wasn’t a climate change issue then we could burn our coal till the cows come home and we wouldn’t need to consider that large step to nuclear energy.
But if we continue to burn our coal prolifically, then it seems to me we haven’t taken climate change seriously.