Federal Resources Minister Martin Ferguson has hit back at the Greens’ opposition to uranium mining, saying it is creating uncertainty in the industry.
Greens Senator Scott Ludlam was reported in The Australian as saying his party would use its freshly-gained influence to try and stop any new uranium mines.
He said the party would also use its increased leverage in the parliament to phase out the three existing mines and halt exports as soon as possible.
"If the uranium industry is feeling nervous about the fact that 1.7 million Australians voted for that explicit position, then they should feel nervous," he said.
Ferguson, who is a strong advocate for uranium mining, told ABC Radio this morning that the Greens’ stance could damage the industry’s international reputation.
"It is not new, but clearly they are trying to create an air of uncertainty about investment in Australia," he said.
The Minister said the States and Territories were actually responsible for approving any new mines.
"We only export uranium to countries that have a bilateral agreement with Australia, guaranteeing that it is used with safe hands, for peaceful purposes," he said.