Taylor sends mixed messages on nuclear

meter reading, big stick
Image: Energy Minister Angus Taylor, Bidgee

Federal Energy Minister Angus Taylor has launched a parliamentary inquiry into the feasibility of nuclear power in Australia, while telling ABC’s 612 the government will not lift Australia’s moratorium on nuclear energy.

Mr Taylor asked the Environment and Energy Committee to look at what would be needed for “any future government’s consideration” for the adoption of nuclear technology.

“This will be the first inquiry into the use of nuclear power in Australia in more than a decade and is designed to consider the economic, environmental and safety implications of nuclear power,” Mr Taylor said in a letter to committee chair and LNP member Ted O’Brien.

“I am confident that your committee — involving all sides of politics — is the best way to consider this issue in a sensible way.”

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Several Coalition backbenchers, including Barnaby Joyce, have called for an inquiry into nuclear technology.

Joyce has suggested making nuclear power free for those in communities close to reactors in order to get them on board.

He explained the policy as, “if you can see the reactor [from your house], you power is for free. If you are within 50 kilometres of a reactor, you get power for half price”.

He said that “people would think with their wallets”.

According to the ABC, the inquiry will be complete by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, Japan has had a scare in its Fukushima region with an earthquake with a magnitude of 6.4 occurring at 7:23pm last night.

Japan’s weather agency says there is no danger of a tsunami occurring.