‘Not on my watch’: MP’s vow to block nuclear

 

An MP has vowed to fight tooth and nail against nuclear power after a southern Gold Coast politician said she wasn't against considering the controversial energy source.

Member for Richmond Justine Elliot pointed to a recent Sky News interview involving Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews, the Member for McPherson.

When asked about nuclear energy in Australia, Ms Andrews said: "I don't have an issue with it being considered."

Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy Mark Butler seized on the comments and said it was another example of senior Liberals supporting nuclear power.

He asked whether Ms Andrews would "prefer the nuclear plant in Coolangatta, Robina, Burleigh Heads or Palm Beach?".

"Scott Morrison needs to make his position clear," he said.

The back-end-forth over the issue prompted Mrs Elliot to weigh in and reaffirm her "longstanding opposition to nuclear power".

"Our community on the North Coast does have a major issue with nuclear energy and I stand with them in opposing any nuclear power plants in coastal communities like ours on the NSW North Coast," she said.

"Let me make this very clear to Scott Morrison and the Liberals and Nationals - if you pursue any plans for nuclear energy in our region, our community will fight this every day."

Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy Mark Butler. Picture Kym Smith
Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy Mark Butler. Picture Kym Smith


The Labor MP said she had a clear message for LNP Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

"As the local Federal MP my message to the Prime Minister is - no nuclear power - not on my watch," Mrs Elliot said.

"The Liberal National government needs to come clean on their plans for nuclear power and reassure our community that it won't become home to a nuclear power plant.

"We know that nuclear power plants need to be built near water so I call on the Liberals and Nationals to rule out any plans for nuclear power in our area."

Richmond MP Justine Elliot with former Labor Opposition Leader Bill Shorten.
Richmond MP Justine Elliot with former Labor Opposition Leader Bill Shorten.

Mrs Elliot was adamant the northern NSW community "don't want it in our area".

"I stand committed in my opposition to nuclear power and under my watch the North Coast will never become home to a nuclear power plant," she said.

Mrs Elliot added nuclear power plants could not legally be built in Australia and she said the pressure was on Mr Morrison to "take real action to end the energy crisis that has emerged under the Liberal National Government".

"So far, all the Liberals and Nationals are promising in energy is expensive new coal-fired power stations and a growing pressure from Ministers such as Karen Andrews, for Australia to pursue even more expensive nuclear power," she said.

Mrs Elliot's electorate of Richmond stretches from the Queensland-NSW border to Ballina region in the south