Regional Queenslanders deserve better than nuclear fantasies

The Federal Coalition's focus on uneconomic nuclear power stations is a dangerous distraction from real climate action.

The Coalition has today earmarked Callide and Tarong as possible sites for nuclear power plants that would be built if it were elected.

Spruiking this false solution creates uncertainty for regional communities when they deserve a well-planned and actionable pathway for transitioning their local economies.

The Queensland Conservation Council calls on the Federal Coalition to provide genuine solutions to the climate crisis that will actually reduce pollution this decade, not divide the community with this new unrealistic proposal designed to delay climate action.

Queensland Conservation Council Director Dave Copeman said

We need to replace our coal fired power stations this decade to take action on climate and secure our energy future. We cannot do that by trying to build up a nuclear energy industry that will take more than 20 years.

It is completely unfair to suggest to regional Queenslanders that the solution to bringing down their power bills is building a technology that will take decades to get off the ground and cost four times more than renewable energy backed by storage. Queenslanders are practical people and this is an impractical solution.

The difference between the Treasurer, outlining a detailed plan to keep building renewable energy well and bringing down emissions, and the Opposition Leader throwing out fantasy policies, is stark.

In Callide, we should be focusing on expanding efforts by companies like AlphaHPA, who have already been creating jobs in the Gladstone area. A nuclear distraction will directly undermine and delay this investor interest in clean manufacturing and renewable hydrogen production

Tarong coal fired power station has faced water shortages in times of drought - how could putting a water-hungry nuclear power station here be safe? Who will lose access to accommodate the emergency water reserves necessary to respond to nuclear incidents?

Renewable energy is already delivering nearly 30% of Queensland’s electricity, bringing down power prices and emissions for all Queenslanders. We have plans in place to repower our entire energy system and stimulate local clean manufacturing.

The Federal Coalition is deliberately creating confusion and trying to delay climate action by pretending nuclear energy is a viable climate solution for Queensland.

It’s not a coincidence that the State LNP is not supporting nuclear, because they would be responsible for delivering this technology, and they know it can’t work.

We will continue working with industry, households and the government in Queensland to deliver the real climate solutions we need, starting with building renewable energy quickly and well.

The Queensland Conservation Council calls for both sides of Queensland politics to ignore this distraction and focus on the real work of delivering renewable energy in a way that benefits nature and communities.