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Uranium Stakeholder Engagement in Northern Australia

Abstract

Uranium has been mined in the Northern Territory of Australia more or less continuously since 1949. Most of these mines have been located on Aboriginal land, although in many cases Native Title has only been recently established and the rights of the Traditional Owners finally acknowledged. In earlier days consultation with the Traditional Owners was generally unheard of and few sites were rehabilitated when mining ceased. However, leading practice in modern mining, including uranium mining, requires that these two issues are paid particular attention, whether it be for development and operation of current mines or the remediation of legacy sites. The paper presents two brief case studies in relation to stakeholder engagement developed in the Alligator Rivers Region uranium field of Australia’s Northern Territory. The subject of the first case study, the South Alligator valley, was subject to intensive prospecting and exploration which resulted in the development of 13 small uranium mines between 1955 and 1964. The operations were abandoned and the area returned to being a cattle ranch. In 1987 the valley lay within an area that was incorporated into the World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park. In 1996 the Gunlom Land Trust, an association of traditional owners, was granted  More>>
Authors:
Waggitt, P., E-mail: p.waggitt@iaea.org [1] 
  1. Darwin, NT (Australia)
Publication Date:
May 15, 2014
Product Type:
Conference
Report Number:
IAEA-TECDOC-1739
Resource Relation:
Conference: URAM-2009: 3. International Symposium on Uranium Raw Material for the Nuclear Fuel Cycle: Exploration, Mining, Production, Supply and Demand, Economics and Environmental Issues, Vienna (Austria), 22-26 Jun 2009; Other Information: 10 refs.; Related Information: In: Uranium Raw Material for the Nuclear Fuel Cycle: Exploration, Mining, Production, Supply and Demand, Economics and Environmental Issues (URAM-2009). Proceedings of an International Symposium| 322 p.
Subject:
11 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE AND FUEL MATERIALS; ALLIGATORS; CATTLE; EXPLORATION; FINANCING; IAEA; INSPECTION; LEASES; MINING; NORTHERN TERRITORY; OPERATION; PROSPECTING; RECREATIONAL AREAS; REMEDIAL ACTION; RIVERS; URANIUM; URANIUM MINES; VALLEYS
OSTI ID:
22320763
Research Organizations:
International Atomic Energy Agency, Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Materials Section, Vienna (Austria); OECD Nuclear Energy Agency, Issy-les-Moulineaux (France); Nuclear Energy Institute, Washington, DC (United States); World Nuclear Association, London (United Kingdom)
Country of Origin:
IAEA
Language:
English
Other Identifying Numbers:
Other: ISBN 978-92-0-105014-4; ISSN 1011-4289; TRN: XA15M0008026965
Availability:
Available from INIS in electronic form. Also available on-line: http://www-pub.iaea.org/MTCD/Publications/PDF/TE-1739_web.pdf; Enquiries should be addressed to IAEA, Marketing and Sales Unit, Publishing Section, E-mail: sales.publications@iaea.org; Web site: http://www.iaea.org/books
Submitting Site:
INIS
Size:
page(s) 66-74
Announcement Date:
Apr 01, 2015

Citation Formats

Waggitt, P., E-mail: p.waggitt@iaea.org. Uranium Stakeholder Engagement in Northern Australia. IAEA: N. p., 2014. Web.
Waggitt, P., E-mail: p.waggitt@iaea.org. Uranium Stakeholder Engagement in Northern Australia. IAEA.
Waggitt, P., E-mail: p.waggitt@iaea.org. 2014. "Uranium Stakeholder Engagement in Northern Australia." IAEA.
@misc{etde_22320763,
title = {Uranium Stakeholder Engagement in Northern Australia}
author = {Waggitt, P., E-mail: p.waggitt@iaea.org}
abstractNote = {Uranium has been mined in the Northern Territory of Australia more or less continuously since 1949. Most of these mines have been located on Aboriginal land, although in many cases Native Title has only been recently established and the rights of the Traditional Owners finally acknowledged. In earlier days consultation with the Traditional Owners was generally unheard of and few sites were rehabilitated when mining ceased. However, leading practice in modern mining, including uranium mining, requires that these two issues are paid particular attention, whether it be for development and operation of current mines or the remediation of legacy sites. The paper presents two brief case studies in relation to stakeholder engagement developed in the Alligator Rivers Region uranium field of Australia’s Northern Territory. The subject of the first case study, the South Alligator valley, was subject to intensive prospecting and exploration which resulted in the development of 13 small uranium mines between 1955 and 1964. The operations were abandoned and the area returned to being a cattle ranch. In 1987 the valley lay within an area that was incorporated into the World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park. In 1996 the Gunlom Land Trust, an association of traditional owners, was granted native title to the area under the Commonwealth’s Northern Territory Land Rights Act (1976). The new owners immediately leased the land back to the Commonwealth Government for continued use as a National Park. A condition of that lease was that all former mine sites and associated workings would be rehabilitated by 2015. The paper describes the comprehensive consultation process involving all stakeholders that was developed for this programme; and goes on to describe the programme of remediation works to date and the situation as of 2009. The second case history deals with the consultation process developed by one Government agency as it works with Traditional Owners and other stakeholders in maintaining surveillance over the operating Ranger Uranium Mine. The Supervising Scientist Division of the Commonwealth Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts is responsible for environmental oversight of the mining operations and has developed a number of systems for engaging stakeholders which have stood the test of time. These are described in the paper which ends with a brief overview of recent publications on this topic from IAEA, the uranium industry and others. (author)}
place = {IAEA}
year = {2014}
month = {May}
}