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Nuclear Taboo Under Review in Uranium-Rich Australia

Ranger Uranium Mine, Northern Territory, Australia.
Photographer: Auscape/UIG via Getty Images
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While Australia is home to the world’s largest uranium reserves, it has never had a nuclear power plant. Now, amid growing concerns over climate change, the government is weighing whether to reverse its long-held ban.

The state of South Australia, where BHP Billiton Ltd. operates the Olympic Dam mine, is setting up a royal commission to evaluate nuclear power’s impact on both the region’s economy and its carbon emissions. At the same time, the federal government is set to release within months an extensive report on energy that will explore the issue further.