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Actions to grow SA uranium industry commended

The South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy (SACOME) welcomes the State Government’s Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission response released this week, with actions set to expand our uranium industry.

Rebecca Knol, SACOME CEO, said “The Government’s response this week indicates its support and confidence in further developing our uranium mining industry.”

The Government’s decision to simplify State and Federal processes for uranium mining through pursuing an expansion of the existing bilateral agreement under the EPBC Act is applauded.

The current duplication of assessment and approval requirements for new uranium mines is unnecessary, expensive and a deterrent to investment. Since before the Hawke Review of the EPBC Act in 2008, SACOME has proactively advocated for the removal of uranium mining and milling as a nuclear action and trigger for assessment under the Act.

“Streamlining environmental assessments between state and federal levels would see a reduction in both approvals timeframes and costs with no impact whatsoever to environmental standards and outcomes.” Ms Knol said.

SACOME commends the Government’s expansion and improvement of leading initiatives that have ranked SA amongst the top 10 jurisdictions for mining investment, including the State’s world class geological database, pre-competitive geophysical surveying and its Plan for Accelerated Action (PACE). PACE is a highly successful initiative that has generated $700 million of exploration investment in SA and identified significant economic resources, with $20 of exploration and $48 in mining revenue realised for each $1 of PACE investment.

“We applaud the government’s commitment to build on this through the implementation of a Uranium Discovery and Development Strategy focused on increasing exploration investment and uncovering new deposits.” Ms Knol said.

“Providing start up support for Aboriginal companies in the drilling, sampling and heritage services area is also an excellent initiative.”

South Australia is a world class uranium province, host to 25% of the world’s uranium resources and 80% of Australia’s uranium. Olympic Dam is the single largest known uranium deposit in the world and the fourth largest copper mine. Uranium is a key economic contributor to the South Australian economy, bringing in $118 million in royalties over the last 10 years over which time $346 million dollars of uranium has been produced and exported. The State Government’s response outlines strategic positions and tangible actions to expand this rich uranium industry and its already substantial contributions to the State.

Media contact:

Nigel Long, Director Policy and Community SACOME: 0448 848 038

General media enquiries: Megan Andrews, SACOME: 08 8202 9999 / 0448 848 586