The Adelaide meeting has certainly drawn some big hitters from the Australian and international nuclear scene. Experts from China, the United States, India and Japan as well as Australia will be looking at the potential nuclear energy has to reduce greenhouse gases, and at what a sharp rise in the number of reactors in Australia and worldwide would mean for global agreements on non-proliferation. The chairman of the meeting is arms control expert Professor Richard Leaver of Flinders University. He says the Switkowski recommendations are unlikely to be fully implemented in Australia.
Australia, possibly the world is at a nuclear crossroads. Where the nuclear renaissance meets modern concerns about proliferation. Proliferation is indeed a challenge, but not a show stopper according to most experts. This is being discussed on ABC Radio by Australia's Defence Minister, Dr Brendan Nelson; Mark Fitzpatrick, senior fellow for Non-Proliferation, International Institute for Strategic Studies.
Also The Economist is discussing the modern 'China Syndrome' [as in pointing to China as an excuse to continue the indiscriminate dumping of toxic fossil fuel waste into the atmosphere]. Turns out China's per-capita emissions stand at 3.6 tonnes per person as opposed to Australia's reported 19.4 or the United States' 20.2. [Why should I be entitled to spew out over 5 times the emissions than Joe 'Chin' Bloggs in China?]
But what is China doing about this...? continuing to deploy a diverse array of low/no carbon emission energy technologies including... you guessed it, nuclear.
Much of [the planned deployment of renewable energy production technology] will come from hydroelectric power. But China is also the world's fifth-biggest user of wind turbines, and the biggest consumer of the sort of solar panels used to heat water.
Greater use of nuclear power should also help reduce China's emissions. The government is building four new nuclear reactors, and earlier this year placed an order for another four—a far more ambitious construction programme than any other country save Russia.