PETALING JAYA: Lynas (M) Sdn Bhd, operator of the controversial rare earth project in Gebeng, Pahang, has been given two additional requirements to the five licence conditions imposed by the Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB).
In a press release, Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili said one of the new conditions was that Lynas must submit a plan to immobilise radioactive elements in the residue that is to be disposed.
“Lynas must submit to the board a method to immobilise radioactive elements in the residue to be disposed in the event excessive residue is stored in the Residue Storage Facility (RSF). The method is to trap radioactive elements from being released into the environment,” the statement read.
The immobilisation method will be approved by AESB and would be made part of the licence conditions, the statement added.
The other condition is that Lynas must submit an “Emergency Response Plan” to control release of dust from the residue into the environment.
“The Emergency Response Plan is necessary in the event the water sprinkler system fails and it should include a contingency measure to provide an alternative water source on standby at all times.”
The TOL shall only be issued by the board once Lynas has complied with all the conditions, including the two additional ones.
The statement also said the ministry has rejected an appeal by three individuals against the decision of AELB to approve a Temporary Operating License (TOL) to Lynas.
“After giving due consideration to all evidence presented at the hearing of the issues raised by the appellants, the minister has decided there was no strong justification nor scientific or technical basis for him to set aside decision of the board.”
Ismail Abu Bakar, Tan Ah Meng and Abujavalli V. Raman filed the appeal under Section 32 of the Atomic Energy Licensing ACt 1984 [Act 304] on the board's decision to approve a TOL with conditions to Lynas.