Yeelirrie

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UPDATE: The Appeals Convenor and the Environment Minister have dismissed Cameco's appeal to overturn the EPA recommendation. But on the 16th of December the Environment Minister - Albert Jacob - gave an Environmental approval to the project - ignoring the warnings and advice from the EPA that the mine would make several species extinct. 

In August 2016 the EPA recommended that the Yeelirrie project be rejected as it could not meet the Precautionary Principle - an important objective of the Environmental Protection Act - and foundation of our Environmental laws.

Status: no approval - not operating

  • In August 2016 the WA EPA recommended that the Yeelirrie project be rejected on the grounds that the project is inconsistent with one of the objectives of the Environmental Protection Act
  • Cameco lodged an appeal 
  • In December 2016 the Environment Minister rejected Cameco's appeal but is yet to make a determination about the mine - it is possible he could approve the mine despite the huge environmental costs 
  • 16th January 2017 the Environment Minister approved the Yeelirrie uranium mine despite the EPA recommendation to reject the project. 

What can you do?

Read more about the EPA decision to reject the Yeelirrie proposal here. 

  • Join the Walkatjurra Walkabout - find out why this country is important to the Traditional Owners and pastoralists
  • Check out the Joint Statement oppossing the Kintyre and Yeelirrie uranium mines - from the Parnngurr community and Leonora Community to Cameco Shareholders here
  • Find out about Cameco's track record (UPDATED AUGUST 2016)
  • Sign the Uranium Free Charter
  • Call your local Labor Member or your local Labor Candidate – ask them to commit to reintroduce the ban on uranium mining in 2017
  • Donate to our fighting fund - to help us get legal advice and air radio ads in some key seats
  • Write letters to your local paper about why you'll be voting for a nuclear free future at the next election 
  • Sign up to the weekly news bulletin for the latest events, actions and news

The Yeelirrie uranium proposal was referred to the WA Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) in November 2014 by Canadian uranium miner Cameco. In 2015 the project was released for Public Environment Review. In August 2016 the WA EPA made a recommendation to reject the Yeelirrie proposal. The final decision will be made by the WA Environment Minister - stay posted for that - in the meantime feel free to write to the Minister or call the Minister and urge him to take the evidence based advice from the EPA. 

Cameco want to double the rate of production that was proposed by BHP Billiton, this means increasing water demand, increased number of trucks from Yeelirrie to Port Adelaide. 

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·         Open pit - 9km long, 1.5 km wide & 10m deep

·         14 million tonnes of overburden

·         7,500 tonnes per year of uranium

·         8.7 Million Litres of water a day

·         4 road trains a week

·         126,000 tonnes per year of Co2 emission

·         36 million tonnes of tailings stored in the open pit 

·         Clearing of 2421 Ha

·        22 years of operation

·         Highly variable work force – average of 300.  

A 9km stretch of open pit mining of a radioactive mineral in a highly mobile calcrete form in a region with high winds and the frequent occurrence of dust storms means significant public health risks and a high level of public interest. 

File Archive: 

  • Public Environment Review (PER) companies mine proposal  here
  • PER Joint submission/ analysis of the mine proposal here
  • The EPA recommendation to reject the mine proposal here
  • Our Appeal here
  • The Office of the Appeals Convenor Report here
  • The Ministers response to Appeals here
  • The State Minister Approval here

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