Aussie minister confirms Malaysia asked for aid to clear out Lynas waste

The Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Ministry previously said Lynas must honour its pledge to remove its water leach purification residue in order for its operating licence to be renewed. — Reuters pic
The Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Ministry previously said Lynas must honour its pledge to remove its water leach purification residue in order for its operating licence to be renewed. — Reuters pic

KUALA LUMPUR, April 3 — Malaysia has asked Australia to accept 450,000 metric tonnes of radioactive waste produced by Australian firm Lynas Corp at its rare-earth processing plant here, the latter country’s environment minister confirmed.

Melissa Price said she received an official letter from Deputy Environment and Climate Change Minister Isnaraissah Munirah Majilis on the matter.

Price’s office yesterday told business news portal The Australian Financial Review that it was unable to comment further until the request had received proper consideration.

The future of the Lynas Advanced Material Plant (LAMP) in Gebeng, Kuantan, remains unclear after two ministers gave conflicting statements on the matter.

This prompted Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s intervention yesterday.

“The Cabinet will meet to decide once and for all the federal government’s stance on the management of Lynas Malaysia Sdn Bhd’s radioactive waste,” Dr Mahathir said.

Pakatan Harapan (PH) candidates had campaigned against Lynas and the LAMP during last year’s general election.

The coalition formed a special parliamentary caucus committee to monitor Lynas after it won the general election.

The Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Ministry previously said Lynas must honour its pledge to remove its water leach purification residue in order for its operating licence to be renewed.

Entrepreneur Development Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Md Yusof contradicted this on Monday by claiming there was no official stand on the matter.

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