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Assessment of the Jabiluka Project : report of the Supervising Scientist to the World Heritage Committee



Assessment of the Jabiluka Project : report of the Supervising Scientist to the World Heritage Committee


Johnston, A.; Prendergast, J. B.; Bridgewater, Peter


E-Publications; E-Books; PublicationNT; Supervising Scientist Report; 138




Alligator Rivers Region

Table of contents

Main report--Appendix 2 of the Main Report. Submission to the Mission of the World Heritage Committee by some Australian Scientists ... --Attachment A. Johnston A. and Needham S. 1999. Protection of the environment near the Ranger uranium mine--Attachment B. Bureau of Meteorology 1999. Hydrometeorological analysis relevant to Jabiluka--Attachment C. Jones, R.N., Hennessy, K.J. and Abbs, D.J. 1999. Climate change analysis relevant to Jabiluka--Attachment D. Chiew, F and Wang, Q.J. 1999. Hydrological anaysis relevant to surface water storage at Jabiluka--Attachment E. Kalf, F. and Dudgeon, C. 1999. Analysis of long term groundwater dispersal of contaminants from proposed Jabiluka mine tailings repositories--Appendix 2 of Attachment E. Simulation of leaching on non-reactive and radionuclide contaminants from proposed Jabiluka silo banks.




Uranium mill tailings - Environmental aspects - Northern Territory - Alligator Rivers Region; Environmental impact analysis - Northern Territory - Jabiluka; Uranium mines and mining - Environmental aspects - Northern Territory - Jabiluka; Jabiluka - Environmental aspects

Publisher name

Environment Australia

Place of publication

Canberra (A.C.T.)


Supervising Scientist Report; 138


1 volume (various pagings) : illustrations, maps

File type






Copyright owner

Environment Australia



Parent handle


Citation address


Related items

https://hdl.handle.net/10070/462403; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/462400; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/462405; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/462406; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/462408; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/462409; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/462411

Page content

12 Location and extent of the Jabiluka ore body The extent of the No 2 orebody at Jabiluka has not been fully delineated at depth in that section of the orebody to the east of the Hegge fault. If the Ranger Mill Alternative were to proceed, the mining at Jabiluka would be restricted to the currently delineated orebody and the period of mining would be about 30 years unless approval is given by the Commonwealth to mine any additional reserves following assessment under the Environment Protection (Impact of Proposals) Act 1974. If the Jabiluka Mill Alternative proceeds, there would be no need for further assessment of a proposal to mine additional reserves under the Environment Protection (Impact of Proposals) Act 1974. Landscape-wide analyses Wasson et al (1998) suggest that the landscape context of the mine proposal has been inadequately addressed. The Jabiluka mine will be a point impact, with some specific potential effects, which are addressed in the main body of this report and shown to be negligible. It is simply not true to suggest that the EIS and PER are inadequate because they have not considered potential impacts across the whole of Kakadu National Park. The assertion that the context modelling for the minesite need be broader than is currently the case is therefore rejected. Acid sulphate soils The concerns of Wasson et al (1998) that heavy metals accidentally released from the mine site could be mobilised into downstream ecosystems by the acid sulphate soils and that the pumping of water from a billabong could lead to increased acidity in surface waters are not justified. Experience at the Ranger mine has shown that in every case where accidental releases have occurred, the total load of any metals released is extremely small compared to the natural load of metals in the soils of the floodplain. The previous proposal to re-establish the old Ja-Ja camp has been withdrawn and there are no plans to pump large quantities of water from the billabong. Rehabilitation of the Jabiluka lease area ERA is required to rehabilitate the Jabiluka mine site in a manner which will establish an environment in the lease area that reflects, to the maximum extent that can reasonably be achieved, the environment existing in the adjacent areas of Kakadu National Park. The intention is that the rehabilitated area could be incorporated into the Kakadu National Park without detracting from park values. The Government has established secure mechanisms to ensure that these rehabilitation objectives will be achieved even if the company becomes insolvent and ceases operations prior to the completion of adequate rehabilitation of the site. Transport of uranium from the Jabiluka mine The transport of uranium product from Jabiluka to the Port of Darwin through Kakadu National Park is governed by laws of the Northern Territory which include the total text of the International Atomic Energy Agency Regulations for the Safe Transport of Radioactive Material. Two emergency trailers and trained emergency response crews are on call for each consignment of uranium product. The trailers contain equipment that would allow the crew to safely collect any spilled uranium product. The hazards associated with spillage of uranium product have been carefully assessed and emergency procedures have been

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