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Green bill bans nuclear shipments

A Green Party bill which would stop nuclear waste shipments entering New Zealand waters was drawn in the members' ballot yesterday.

The bill would prohibit nuclear powered ships or ships carrying radioactive waste or fuel from coming within 200 miles of New Zealand's coastline.

The nuclear-free extension bill had been in the ballot in the name of Green Party Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons for the past three and a half years, until Musterer Ian Ewen-Street took it over in the ballot while working on his own bill. Ms Fitzsimons will progress it in the House.

Ms Fitzsimons said regular shipments of weapons-usable plutonium nuclear fuel from Europe to Japan passing through our backyard was an anathema to our status as a nuclear-free leader.

"Each ship that passes through puts our fisheries and environment at risk, as well as undermining the anti-nuclear decision we made in 1984. "

The Green bill follows a unanimous motion passed in Parliament last year opposing the nuclear shipments - raised by Green Party Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons.

"The cross-party support on my motion last year showed that all politicians recognised the limitations of the 1987 nuclear-free act when it comes to protecting our country from possible nuclear accidents which would devastate our waters and coastline.

"I hope that my bill will receive the same kind of cross-party support when it is debated in Parliament," she said.

Jeanette Fitzsimons MP: 07 868 6511 or 025 586 068 Gina Dempster, Press secretary: 04 470 6723 or 021 1265 289

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