Balancing Risks and Opportunities in the Face of Seismic Concerns and Environmental Considerations

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Balancing Risks and Opportunities in the Face of Seismic Concerns and Environmental Considerations

The Coalition's plan to build nuclear reactors at seven locations across the country, some near known fault lines, raises concerns about seismic risks. While other countries with nuclear power experience more seismic activity, earthquakes, landslides, and groundwater issues remain potential complications.

Nationals leader David Littleproud assures that preliminary assessments have been conducted and further evaluations will be made. He claims that risks can be mitigated through engineering solutions.

However, experts warn that even with engineering, the costs of building safe facilities in high-risk areas could be prohibitive. Additionally, there are still unknowns about the geology of some regions, including undiscovered faults.

Beyond earthquakes, the nuclear regulator ARPANSA has a comprehensive list of considerations, including landslide risk, erosion, soil stability, and groundwater levels.

Local communities, like the Blue Mountains, express concerns about potential groundwater contamination and the impact on the world heritage area.

The Coalition can proceed with hazard assessments without waiting for nationwide or state-level nuclear bans. These assessments typically take a few months to complete, providing insights into the feasibility of building nuclear power plants at the proposed locations.