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Nuclear radiologist exposes myth of medical argument for ‘remote’ waste dump

Media Release
Scott Ludlam 12 Sep 2011

The Australian Greens today welcomed comments from a leading nuclear radiologist shattering the myth that a waste dump is needed in outback Australia to house low-level radioactive medical waste.

Greens spokesperson for nuclear affairs Senator Scott Ludlam said the comments from Dr Peter Karamoskos, ahead of the Senate debate on the National Radioactive Waste Management Bill, exposed the dishonest campaign to impose a waste dump on Muckaty Station in the Northern Territory.

"Dr Karamoskos said the most radioactive isotopes generated from nuclear medicine are designated as ‘very low level' waste, and he described claims that the dump is needed to support nuclear medicine as ‘mischievous scare-mongering'.

"Labor and Coalition MPs alike stood up in the House of Representatives claiming that a nuclear waste dump was necessary in order to use medical isotopes in the fight against cancer. This was cynical and disingenuous."

Dr Karamoskos has worked in clinical practice for 23 years and as a nuclear radiologist for 13 years. He represents the public on the Radiation Safety Committee of Australia's nuclear safety agency ARPANSA and has written extensively on the health risks of ionising radiation and of the nuclear industry.

Senator Ludlam said Dr Karamoskos had blown away the misleading arguments for the dump.

"The Government needs to rethink the remote dump strategy and stop resting its case on the pretence that this is about nuclear medicine."

Media Contact: Giovanni Torre - 0417 174 302


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