The push to lift the ban on nuclear power in Australia has been driven by interests in uranium mining. This push is less about climate change and more about lifting the uranium price. The slump in uranium price since the Fukushima nuclear disaster has stopped a number of mines and forced others into suspension.
The Minerals Council of Australia has (as the AFR explain) waged a campaign to lift the ban on nuclear power. In the MCA Climate Change plan 2020 they promote advancing “nuclear solutions.” The MCA has released “untapped potential” promoting nuclear and uranium mining. They have promised to “advocate for the lifting of the nuclear energy ban in Australia.”
You don’t have to look far to see why the MCA has a sudden interest. They have at least 11 member groups who are uranium companies. Lifting the ban on nuclear power they believe would drive up the uranium price. The MCA also represent at least 14 coal companies. So is the MCA interested in climate change solutions. Or are they just looking out for a small number of marginal companies?
The uranium companies include: Boss Resources. BHP. Cameco Australia. Cauldron Energy. Deep Yellow. Heathgate Resources. Energy Resources Australia. Paladin Energy. Rio Tinto. Toro Energy and Vimy Resources.
Executives from BHP, Rio Tinto and Vimy Resources all hold board positions with the MCA. Previously executives from Toro Energy and Cameco were on the MCA board. And so it is not surprising the MCA has adopted a pro nuclear position.