Press statement of Stop Lynas Coaltion(SLC) & Save Malaysia Stop Lynas (SMSL) on
March 7, 2012
Last night at a dinner function in Kantian, the Menteri Besar of Pahang Dato Seri Adnan Yaakub suggested to the Senator from Sungai Lembing that the Lynas radioactive waste should be dumped in the disused mine shafts in his valley resort town.
“The MB’s suggestion will ruin Sungai Lembing and returning it to its past post mining doom. This inland valley has just managed to turn that around through a burgeoning tourism trade in recent years.“ Said Mr Tan Bun Teet of SMSL.
“The thousands of tourists who visit this lovely town each year will go elsewhere in the presence of a radioactive waste dump. Imagine the loss of livelihoods and income for the local people?”Asked Mr tan
The Lynas rare earth refinery plant is at its final stage of construction at present. Tests are still underway. Early in February a temporary operating licence was issued to Lynas Malaysia on five conditions. One of the conditions requires Lynas to secure a permanent disposal facility for its radioactive waste. To date, no location has been formally announced.
Encik Andansura Rabu, Head of a community organisation to Stop Lynas known as BADAR (Badan Bertindak Anti Rare Earth Refinery) as well as Stop Lynas Coalition(SLC) remarked,
“Even if a permanent waste dump is found, what about the 500 tonnes of effluence and 100,000 cubic metre of waste gas that will be discharged into our river and the sea EVERY HOUR?”
“Communities in Balok live close to the plant – only a few kilometres away. Some live along the Balok River and along the coast where Lynas’ waste water will flow into the South China Sea. How will they live if their seafood and the sea become polluted?” Encik Rabu asked.
Additionally, Sungai Lembing is an important water catchment for Kuantan. Ground water contamination and contamination of water supply are both highly likely in a wet tropical country like Malaysia. The MB also warned local politicians against taking part in any Stop Lynas activities or they would face repercussions should the ruling Barisan National returns to power at the next election.
BADAR and SMSL called on the people of Pahang to voice their concerns and stand out for their rights to fight for a cleaner and safer future for their family and their country.
“We are appalled by the MB for making this ludicrous and damaging suggestion. Australia will be getting A$18 millions (or MYR55 millions) in taxes from Lynas each year. All we will be getting in Pahang are Lynas’ toxic waste and pollution. Dato Seri Adnan Yaakub is not fit to be Pahang’s Menteri Besar if he puts the need of a foreign company who pays no tax over the health and welfare of the state.” Concluded Mr Tan and Encik Rabu.