Nuclear actions

Nuclear actions are:

  • establishing or significantly modifying a nuclear installation
  • transporting spent nuclear fuel or radioactive waste products arising from reprocessing
  • establishing or significantly modifying a facility for storing radioactive waste products arising from reprocessing
  • mining or milling uranium ores, excluding operations for recovering mineral sands or rare earths
  • establishing or significantly modifying a large-scale disposal facility for radioactive waste. A decision about whether a disposal facility is large scale will depend on factors including:
    • the activity of the radioisotopes to be disposed of
    • the half-life of the material
    • the form of the radioisotopes
    • the quantity of isotopes handled
  • decommissioning or rehabilitating any facility or area in which an activity described above has been undertaken
  • any other type of action set out in the EPBC Regulations.

Protecting the environment from nuclear actions

The EPBC Act recognises the protection of the environment from nuclear actions as a matter of national environmental significance.

A nuclear action will require approval if it has, will have, or is likely to have a significant impact on the environment. Nuclear actions should be referred to the Minister and undergo an environmental assessment and approval process.