Here in the Rudall River National Park we are soon to discover that a National Park is just like your back yard.
If there is a mineral there and someone wants to mine it, they can and will mine it.
In our case, the mineral is uranium and the back yard is the home of the traditional Martu people. A place where they hunt, where they swim in the water holes and where the footprint of man is washed away with the next season’s rains.
Unless they are the men are from Cameco. In which case they will mine uranium from a parcel of land which used to be a part of a gazetted National Park. This parcel was excised from the Park by a Government decree.
So for maybe seven or ten years a mine will operate and then the miners will leave.
Left behind will be the pollution they promise won’t happen.
Just like at the Ranger Uranium Mine in the Kakadu National Park. I mean “the Ranger Uranium Mine with-in the Kakadu National Park.” For that was another parcel of land excised from a National Park.
There are 100,000 litres of contaminated water leaking into the ground water each day from the Ranger mine. The Australian Government says we should not be worried about this.
And they are quite correct. There is no need for any politician in Canberra, no bureaucrat in his ivory tower or any mining executive in his overseas mansion to worry about that contamination. After all, his children and grand children will not hunt the land, relying on the groundwater for their life. They will not swim in the contaminated water holes nor eat the fish caught in those waterholes.
No uranium mine in Australia has failed to pollute the land it is on or the land outside the mine’s boundaries.
But the Government tells us we should not worry.