Environment Groups have warned investors that today’s EPA advice on the Toro uranium mine proposal in the Murchison is a long way from an approved and operating mine. The EPA has deferred consideration of critical environmental issues that need to be dealt with before a mine could proceed. This along with community opposition, a lack of bipartisan support and the ongoing slump in the uranium price make Wiluna a poor investment.
“Investors should certainly not take this as a green light for development. On the contrary, the EPA recommendation for this project simply defers the need for Toro to address serious and costly environmental problems to a later date” said CCWA nuclear free campaigner Mia Pepper.
“Key elements of the Toro proposal remain totally incompatible with basic environmental standards, including plans to store 50 million tonnes of radioactive mine waste on the edge of a lake bed that is known to flood.”
“The project threatens a number of endangered and threatened species and impacts two lake systems in a unique arid environment. All of these issues and more will need to be addressed by other regulators before final approvals can be issued allowing Toro to mine the deposit. We will be preparing an appeal on key environmental factors and poor process.”
Toro Energy is a small, unproven uranium company that has received partial and conditional approval for its Wiluna Extension project.
“Toro’s ambition far exceeds its capacity and it is a long way from today’s recommendation to an operating mine”, said ACF campaigner Dave Sweeney.
“Further approvals are needed and the stagnant uranium market makes it very difficult and unlikely for new uranium mines to be developed.”
“What we have seen over the last month is a race for miners to get their paperwork in fast-tracked as there is not bipartisan support for uranium mining which is clearly making the uranium hopefuls uneasy about the 2017 state election.
“This rush has created unrealistic workloads on Government agencies and stakeholders and is simply not consistent or compatible with good process, practise or outcomes. This reckless radioactive roulette is another sign of an increasingly desperate uranium sector”.