Australia’s Nuclear Horizon: Moving Beyond the Drumbeat of Risk Inflation
The 2006 Switkowski review report commissioned by the Howard government highlighted some of the economic and foreign policy benefits that could flow from a major expansion of Australia's uranium export program. It also identified the long-term advantages for Australia's energy security flowing from the development of a national nuclear industry. The report has been condemned by anti-nuclear groups, who argue that proposals for Australia's continuing and, possibly, deeper involvement in the nuclear fuel cycle are unacceptable. The primary risk identified is that Australian uranium exports will contribute to global nuclear proliferation pressures, but claims concerning nuclear-related terrorism are also an increasingly common theme in antinuclear commentary. These arguments, in turn, are framed within a broader set of assumptions about the 'immoral' nature of any engagement in the nuclear fuel cycle. This article examines the most prominent claims put forward by anti-nuclear proponents and argues that many of them are based on an unnecessary inflation of risk.
Australian Journal of Political Science
Australian Government and Politics