Day 29 review:

The Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission heard evidence on three topics today, covering security and non-proliferation risks, investment in nuclear infrastructure and climate change.

The first witness was Dr Darryl Murphy, Partner at KPMG’s Power and Utilities Deal Advisory in the UK – on Topic 18, Financing and investment in nuclear infrastructure. He advises the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change on the development of the Electricity Market Reform, including negotiation on the Contract for Difference for the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant. Dr Murphy has 20 years of experience in infrastructure financing. Throughout his career he has advised public and private sector clients on the financing and delivery of infrastructure projects worldwide, including nuclear programs in Saudi Arabia and Poland, nuclear expansion plans in Romania and case studies for nuclear development for the South African Government. Dr Murphy holds both an Honours Degree and a PhD in Maths and a Post Graduate Diploma in Business and Administration. He covered:

  • Challenges to attracting private investment in nuclear installations in the UK
  • Conditions required to attract private investment in nuclear installations.

Former Federal Minister, and current Chancellor at the Australian National University, Professor the Hon Gareth Evans AC QC appeared as the second witness, addressing Topic 17 – Security and non-proliferation risks. A member of the Australian Parliament for 21 years in total, he was a Cabinet Minister for 13 years, holding the offices of Minister for Resources and Energy and Foreign Minister among others. Professor Evans has held international policymaking roles on a number of advisory bodies to the United Nations and, from 2008 until 2010, he co-chaired the Australian and Japanese sponsored International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament. Professor Evans is the Patron and Emeritus Convener of the Asia Pacific Leadership Network for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament and, until earlier this year, was also Chair of the International Advisory Board for the Centre for Nuclear Non- proliferation and Disarmament in Canberra. His evidence focused on:

  • The current state of global efforts to address nuclear security and proliferation risks
  • The way in which nation States perceive the establishment of new nuclear activities and the international policy implications which arise from doing so
  • Potential multilateral arrangements to undertake proliferation sensitive nuclear activities

The final witness was Professor Ken Baldwin, also from the Australian National University, as the focus returned to Topic 1 – Climate Change and Energy Policy. Professor Baldwin is the Director of the Energy Change Institute at the Australian National University, where he is also Deputy Director of the Research School of Physics & Engineering. The Energy Change Institute provides leadership in energy change research and education in a number of fields ranging from science and engineering of energy generation and energy efficiency, to energy regulation, economics, sociology and policy. Since 2011 Professor Baldwin was a member of the Project Steering Committee for the Australian Energy Technology Assessment (AETA) produced by the Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (BREE). In 2015 he was appointed as a member of the Socio-Economic Modelling Advisory Committee to the South Australian Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission. He spoke on:

  • International and national emission reduction targets
  • Opportunities for nuclear in future energy policy.

Video and transcripts of each session will be uploaded into the Public Sessions archive.

The next public session is on Thursday, December 3, 2015, in the Commission’s office, 50 Grenfell St, Adelaide.

Click here for topic and witness lists for these sessions which cover Topic 19 – Opportunities in nuclear medicine and Topic 20 – Nuclear education and skills development.