About the council
In 2009 the Uranium Industry Framework (UIF) undertook a review of the group's structure and objectives, and agreed to restructure the UIF into a Uranium Council.
The UIF was renamed the Uranium Council to reflect the further work to be completed by those involved in the forum. A vision and objectives were developed and endorsed by the council which recognises the new work agenda of the group, while acknowledging the original objectives and purpose of the UIF.
The vision of the Uranium Council is to contribute to national wellbeing through the progressive and sustainable development of the Australian uranium exploration, mining, milling and exporting industry in line with world's best practice standards.
The vision will be achieved through pursuing the following objectives:
- Progressing constructive and compatible changes to the basic legislative and policy framework for the sustainable development of the industry to ensure a consistent and effective regulation regime for uranium mining operators.
- Facilitating economically competitive development of the industry.
- Improving coordination and, where appropriate, the consistency of policy regimes.
- Encouraging new and expanded investment in competitive uranium development opportunities.
- Providing an opportunity for information and policy exchange on issues affecting the uranium industry.
The membership of the council comprises representatives of the Commonwealth and state/territory government agencies, industry, and non-government organisations. The Secretariat for the council is provided by the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism.
The council meets formally once a year with venues rotated between participating jurisdictions. The council has the ability to communicate out of session.
The council deals with four broad strategic themes to progress initiatives which are consistent with the priorities of industry:
- Competitiveness theme—addresses issues impacting on the industry's operational capabilities, investment and land access. This is primarily achieved through progressing the initiatives identified by the Review of Regulatory Efficiency in Uranium Mining. The theme has a long-term objective of ensuring that the regulatory framework is streamlined where appropriate, and unnecessary burdens on the industry are removed.
- development of a national incident reporting regime
- development of principles and guidelines for stakeholder engagement in regulatory oversight
- resolving Commonwealth environmental regulation duplication
- development of a transport strategy to address issues affecting access to appropriate transport infrastructure for uranium shipments
- development of the Guide to Safe Transport of Uranium Oxide Concentrate (see Related documents).
- Sustainability theme—addresses issues impacting on health, safety and the environment, including climate change issues. This group also has carriage of radiation issues associated with uranium mining.
- rollout of the units of competency for Radiation Safety and Protection Skills
- finalisation of the In-situ Recovery Best Practice Guidelines (see Related documents)
- supporting the implementation of best practice standards in radiological protection of non-human biota, led by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA)
- implementation of the Australian National Radiation Dose Register.
- Stewardship theme—addresses the safe and responsible management of uranium, including issues such as safety and non-proliferation. The theme includes participation in international forums to ensure uranium products are produced, transported, used and disposed of in a safe, sustainable and acceptable manner.
Initiatives include the development of a brochure on uranium stewardship (see Related documents).
- Indigenous Communication and Economic Development theme—addresses opportunities for cooperation in economic development between the industry, governments and indigenous communities, and facilitates provision of information about uranium to indigenous communities.
- development of factsheets for Indigenous communities exposed to the prospect of uranium mining (see Related documents)
- development of a DVD on uranium exploration and mining intended for Indigenous communities (Hard copies are available by emailing email@example.com)
- identifying best practice in areas such as Indigenous engagement models and Indigenous employment so that these can be used at other locations and operations.
The strategic themes focus on progressing the recommendations of the Review of Regulatory Efficiency in Uranium Mining and finalising the remaining priorities from the initial Uranium Industry Framework Steering Group Report (see Related documents). Additional priorities may become evident through the work of the council.
Projects are either progressed by working groups, or alternatively, projects can be led by industry or government where appropriate. Each working group is chaired by a member of the council, and depending on the initiative, the Chair can invite relevant members, specialists and/or individuals with expertise and interest in that work area to join the group.
For further information or hard copies of most of the publications listed here please contact the Uranium Council Secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org.