Napandee to host National Radioactive Waste Management Facility

Kimba chosen for radioactive waste facility

Kimba's Napandee site has been officially identified as the host of the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility.

The site will store low-level waste permanently and intermediate-level waste temporarily.

It will employ about 45 people and the government will gift the community a $31 million package.

Federal resources minister Matt Canavan announced on Saturday he had found there was "broad community support" for the site.

A community ballot was held in the Kimba district in late 2019 with 61.6 per cent of voters in favour of hosting the facility at the volunteered sites of Napandee or Lyndhurst.

Separate business and neighbour surveys found 59.3 per cent support from local businesses, 60 per cent support from neighbours within five kilometres of the Napandee site and 100 per cent support from direct neighbours.

The decision follows several years of public consultation with about 3200 public submissions received by the government.

A statement from Mr Canavan's office said 59.8 per cent of local submissions were in favour of the facility.

Mr Canavan said Napandee was chosen ahead of Lyndhurst for both logistical reasons and because it was determined as having stronger support.

"Compared to the other site in Kimba establishing the facility at Napandee would be less technically complex and has stronger support from direct neighbours," he said.

Mr Canavan acknowledged there were still those opposed to the facility at Kimba.

"The facility has broad community support in Kimba but I acknowledge there remains opposition, particularly amongst the Barngarla people and their representative group," he said.

An independent ballot conducted among Barngarla Determination Aboriginal Corporation members found no native title holders in favour of the facility.

"We will work with Traditional Owners to protect culture and heritage, and to maximise economic opportunities and outcomes for local Aboriginal communities near the future facility," Mr Canavan said.

"I also acknowledge concern about potential agricultural impacts.

"Experience around the world is that waste and agricultural industries can coexist, but we will work to provide more assurance.

"And after a sustained effort from outside anti-nuclear groups, I also acknowledge submissions from people who do not live in Kimba demonstrated concern about the facility proceeding.

"I will proceed with the project in a way that recognises and respects views of those who oppose the facility, including the Barngarla people and those with agricultural interests," he said.

Mr Canavan said he would be introducing legislation declaring Napandee as the site of the facility in coming weeks and establishing a community fund to support the town in hosting the facility.

The announcement comes a day before a planned rally against the facility in Kimba on Sunday, February 2.

The rally will go ahead, beginning at 11am near the Halfway Across Australia sign.

Guest speakers at Sunday's rally will include local Labor MP Eddie Hughes, Conservation Council of SA chief Craig Wilkins and Kimba farmers James Shepherdson and Tom Harris.

This story Kimba chosen for radioactive waste facility first appeared on Eyre Peninsula Tribune.