It is obvious that the Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) is not sincere in obtaining public feedback for the application for a temporary operating licence from the rare earth processing company Lynas (M) Sdn Bhd. AELB is making it difficult for the public to access the document that is on display.
The document which includes the Radioactive Waste Management Plan is on display in limited locations and hours from Jan 3 to 17. It was notified that the public can review the documents at the AELB headquarters in Dengkil, Selangor, the Pahang State Secretariat, the AELB temporary office at the Lynas (M) Sdn Bhd project site in Gebeng, Kuantan and the AELB east coast branch office in Kemaman, Terengganu.
People who want to comment on the document have to submit a form provided at the locations before noon on 20 January 2012. Several members of the public who have gone to view the document have complained that they were only allowed limited time to view the whole document which is thick and technical in nature.
The document is still not available online nor hard copies sold so that the public would have better access to the document. The International Atomic Energy Licensing (IAEA) during their review mission in 2011 had among others recommended that the AELB should intensify its activities regarding public information and public involvement.
In view of this recommendation and public right to information, the authority should make the documents easily accessible to the public, including making it available online. CAP and SAM urge the AELB to also extend the time for reviewing the document and submission of comments so that more members of the public can provide feedback.
Press Release - 6 January 2012