Thursday, 20 September 2012

Lynas: People before corporate greed, who will pay the TOL?

Friends of the Earth Australia

Media Release  
Lynas: People before corporate greed, who will pay the TOL?

Concerned Sydney activists in support of Malaysians are gathering at Lynas Corporations head office on Pitt St in Sydney's CBD at 12:30pm today, to express their dissent over the companies plan to export rare earths to Malaysia for processing.

Lynas Corporation has recently received a two year temporary operations license (TOL) from the Malaysian Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB), as of the 5th of September.  This is an issue of significance to Australians, as the ore to be processed at the plant will come from Mount Weld rare earths deposit in Western Australia. The Lynas Applied Materials Plant (LAMP) hasn't even submitted an environmental impact assessment to begin operations of one of the worlds largest rare earth refineriery located on the east coast of Malaysia in the Pahang state at Gebeng, Kuantan.

Tully McIntyre from Friends of the Earth stated "Lynas plans to export 22,000 tonnes of ore annually to Malaysia for processing, which risks polluting important mangrove coastal ecosystem and major sources of livelihoods for local people in Malaysia. There are well over 700,000 people living in a 30 km radius of LAMP."
"These people were not consulted about the refinery, or a proper environmental impact statement carried out for LAMP."

The Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia stated last week Lynas had submitted an application to Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) to import waste back to Australia, if so Australians are wondering where it would be stored.

Miss McIntyre went on to say Australian activists are calling for more stringent research to be carried out in Australia and abroad before proceeding further, Malaysians do not want LAMP and an Australian company should not be forcing the project on an unwilling international community. The campaign against Lynas in Malaysia is the biggest environmental campaign in Malaysian history. Australian activists will remain to show strong support with the Malaysians to stop Lynas exporting this toxic legacy.

Greens MP Jamie Parker NSW will address the concerned activist at the lunch time protest.

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