MEMBER FOR MONARO and Deputy Premier John Barilaro has spent thousands of taxpayer dollars flying to the United States as part of his campaign to build nuclear reactors in NSW.
The NSW Opposition has revealed that in March, the Nationals leader took a staff member and a Government official to the USA for ten days at the cost of $32,459, according to a compulsory post-travel cost report. In the report, Mr Barilaro states that the meetings he had in the USA “provided useful insight for the development of NSW policy”.
Barilaro attended a conference on nuclear reactors in Atlanta, Georgia, where his accommodation and fees were paid by the nuclear industry. He also met with officials from the US Office of Nuclear Energy.
Labor Leader in the Legislative Council and Shadow Minister for Energy Adam Searle said: “The Deputy Premier has sunk $32,000 into travelling to the USA as part of his plans to spruik nuclear energy for NSW. It looks like the US nuclear industry – that is struggling to get buyers – made a good investment in Mr Barilaro’s trip.
“Mr Barilaro is ignoring the fact that nuclear produced electricity is the most expensive electricity that is produced in the world.”
A pro-nuclear power group, Nuclear for Climate Australia, has identified 12 regions of NSW as possible sites for nuclear reactors, including locations in – the Murray region, the Snowy, the Hunter and on the North Coast.
IMAGE: Nuclear power, Florida, USA. Iofoto / Dreamstime.