Increase safety measures at Lynas rare earths plant, IAEA say

Lynas Corp has been told to lift the safety standards at its Malaysian rare earths processing plant.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has recommended increased safety measures for the refinery.

It began an investigation in May to uncover whether the refinery emits radioactive pollution.

The report was released in June.

According to the Malaysian Trade Ministry, the report found that while the plant complied with radiation safety standards it needed to improve regulations.

The IAEA made 11 recommendations for waste management and eventual decommissioning of the rare earths refinery.

It stated that Lynas should be required to submit a comprehensive long term waste management plan for the refinery.

The miner was also required to provide the public with a greater understanding on radiation safety and the proposed works at the plant, the IAEA saying it "should intensify it communication with interested and affected parties in order to demonstrate how it ensure the radiological safety of the public and the environment".

Lynas will only be given full operating lincences if it meets all 11 recommendations.

Despite passing IAEA investigations, public protests around the plant have increased amid fears of radioactive pollution.

The miner has also hit out at the New York Times.

In an article by the Times, it claimed that the plant has comprised safety standards in its construction.

Lynas stated that it "will never comprise on these standards or required specifications versus cost savings".

The miner added that its design and construction have been implemented in accordance with international standings.

The refinery is currently 40% complete.

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