Young nuclear campaigner Will Shackel has slammed Australia’s attempts to combat global warming as “simply embarrassing” as he pushes for our nuclear ban to be lifted.
The 17-year-old nuclear campaigner fervently believes that an end to the country’s nuclear ban “must be on the table” in order to seriously address the issue.
Will Shackel, a year 11 student in Brisbane attended the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known as COP28, in Dubai which ran from November 30 to December 12.
At the event, Will was in the ‘Blue Zone’ where the formal negotiations for COP28 occurred and had the opportunity to bring nuclear energy on to the agenda.
Before departing for Dubai he said, “Obviously I’m not going to be one of the main people in those negotiations but hopefully I’ll have some role and some ability to change some minds whilst they’re at COP 28 and hopefully bring nuclear energy into the agenda.”
“The fact is if Australia wants to be serious about climate change and if the world wants to be able to solve climate change, then we can’t just do it with renewables alone, nuclear has to be part of that solution or at very least considered and on the table in order to solve it.”
Mr Shackel is the founder of Australia’s first youth-led campaign for nuclear energy – Nuclear for Australia (email@example.com ) and has been a trailblazer for trying to legalise nuclear energy, gathering about 10,000 signatures on a petition and also appearing in front of an Australian Senate Committee in Canberra to argue why he believes it should be legalised.
You can sign Will’s petition by going to: https://www.nuclearforaustralia.com/petition.
Nuclear power is prohibited under the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998 (ARPANS Act) and the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
However, the country does operate a single 20-megawatt nuclear reactor for research in the Sydney suburb of Lucas Heights.
The teenager’s strong passion on the issue is further strengthened by his desire to look out for his generation in the fight against global warming.
“Australia’s position on climate change is simply embarrassing because if it doesn’t include nuclear energy – the cleanest form of power generation possibly available to us – what is the point?” he said.
“No nation has been able to successfully transition without either large amounts of nuclear or hydro.”
“Australia should be supporting global efforts to use nuclear energy in Australia, we are uniquely positioned to be a good global citizen and help other nations decarbonise effectively with nuclear energy,” he said.
“So, if we were serious about acting on climate change, surely at the very least – even if nuclear energy doesn’t work here in Australia for economics or whatever other reason the government may have – at least we provide resources and provide support to the 32 other countries and the countries interested in joining them, to help them reach net zero and help them ultimately address the global issue we’re experiencing with climate change.”
As Will’s knowledge of the global warming situation develops, he will probably discover that there is no climate ‘crisis’ that young people like him need to fear.
He will also consider the fact that Australia only produces just over 1% of human-induced CO2 emissions, so nothing we do as a nation will have any measurable impact on global CO2 emissions.
However, his support for nuclear energy is a positive step in the right direction, as that would certainly help to reduce our energy costs.
Needless to say, our Minister for High Energy Prices, Chris ‘Blackouts’ Bowen, will undoubtedly ignore Will Shackel and all the other millions of Australians who support ending the nuclear ban and opening up the market to nuclear energy.
If investors are then confident that nuclear energy can be profitably enabled in Australia then we have the option to let them go ahead at minimal cost to taxpayers.
As a result, we could all be a lot better off – both individually and as a nation.
But first, Bowen has to go – he is a clear and present danger to our economy and future well-being.
Thanks to Patrick Staveley at Sky News and Johannes Leak.