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Wednesday September 11, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Wednesday September 11, 2013 MYT 7:28:43 AM
by ong han sean
KUANTAN: Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP) has been picked to monitor and analyse the radiation level from the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant in Gebeng.
Deputy Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Abu Bakar Mohamad Diah said the cooperation would enable UMP experts to analyse the radiation data from the rare earth plant, which would then be used for safety monitoring.
“We do not want the presence of the Lynas plant to be thought of as a dangerous thing. That is why I always say we should not politicise this issue as we are backed by professionals who are doing their best to monitor the plant.
“The problem is that it has been politicised to the point that the people are doubting the abilities of our experts even though they have given complete information that shows the plant is not dangerous and can create many downstream industries, job opportunities and economic growth in the east coast,” he said after witnessing the signing of the memorandum of understanding between the Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) and the Lynas plant on Monday evening.
Dr Abu Bakar said UMP, as an independent body, could give real data that would dispel doubts.
“If the ministry does it, critics will say we are biased. If we get the private sector to do it, they may claim we paid them off.
“So, we are using local professionals where we will provide the equipment and they will analyse,” he said.
The MoU was signed by AELB director-general Raja Datuk Abdul Aziz Raja Adnan, AELB chairman Prof Datuk Dr Sukiman Sarmani, UMP vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Daing Nasir Ibrahim and UMP deputy vice-chancellor (academic and international) Prof Datuk Dr Badhrulhisham Abdul Aziz.
Dr Abu Bakar also reiterated the Government’s stand that the waste materials from the rare earth processing at the plant must be shipped out of the country.
“The plans for Lynas’ permanent disposal facility (PDF) must be there according to international law but it does not mean the waste will be stored there.
“The PDF is not used but it must be there as a contingency plan because who knows if it goes bankrupt or closes shop, we can store the waste there temporarily before taking it out of the country,” he explained.
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Science & Technology, Lynas plant in Gabeng
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