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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 696 asked in the Legislative Council on 16 September 2010 by Hon Robin Chapple

Parliament: 38 Session: 1
Answered on 16 September 2010


696. Hon ROBIN CHAPPLE to the Minister for Mines and Petroleum:

I refer to question on notice 867 of 11 October 2000 from Hon Giz Watson to the Minister for Mines, and to photographs and data contained on my website entitled “2010-07-10 Lake Way Site.pdf”.

(1) What process was used to verify that the uranium had indeed been cleaned up at the former Lake Way uranium site?

(2) Can the minister explain why radioactive uranium oxide and ore is still lying around unburied and unfenced at the Lake Way site, when part (4) of question 867 was said to have been complied with?

(3) Is it correct that the material identified on the website is associated with a number of old mining slots viewable on Google Maps and Earth?

(4) What action will the minister take to ensure that the area is remediated?

(5) What action will the minister take in respect of misleading information from the department and/or the company involved in reporting to him that the area had been remediated?

Hon NORMAN MOORE replied:

I thank the member for some notice of this question. I indicate that clearly the member is seeking to increase the number of hits on his website by asking a question every day that relates to his website and then requiring someone to look at it. At last count, on this particular one there were three.

(1) The Lake Way area was inspected by officers from the Department of Mines and Petroleum on 27 July 2010. The material was confirmed as naturally occurring uranium-bearing rock by subsequent laboratory testing.

(2) Background radiation levels vary around the Lake Way area due to the presence of an irregularly shaped uranium ore body that outcrops in places.

(3) It is not possible to provide a definitive answer as DMP has not identified the precise material in the photographs supplied on the website. There are a number of known former costean sites in the Lake Way area, but also a number of areas where the ore body naturally outcrops.

(4)–(5) Not applicable.