A few hours ago, we were in a pub. G suddenly asked me if I knew what this “lynas” thing that was being mentioned so often on our Facebook and Twitter timelines. I said, “No. Can’t be bothered. Everyone’s protesting against something these days”.
So he went on Google and then told me, “Oh, it’s about rare earth”.
“Rare earth. You don’t know what’s rare earth?”
“Dumbass”. And we continued drinking.
Later, we got home, watched a few episodes of Homeland (truly awesome series, btw) and now G has collapsed in bed.
For some reason, I’m still not ready to sleep. Probably has something to do with the couple of candy bars and a packet of pork scratchings I inhaled while watching TV. So I ended up googling “Lynas”.
The more I read what I read, the sicker I felt in my guts.
1. Lynas is basically an Australian company that’s building a $230 million rare earth processing plant in a location called Gebeng that’s about 30km from the town of Kuantan, Pahang. The project has been approved by our government.
2. So what is “rare earth”? From the little that I’ve read….oh, nothing much. Just a beautiful, politically correct name for natural occurring minerals that are RADIOACTIVE.
3. In a nutshell, what this Kuantan-based Lynas plant will do is remove radioactive elements from the rare earth minerals so that what’s left can be used in various industries, namely electronics.
4. When a part of something is removed, there will be waste. In the case of Lynas, radioactive elements will be removed from rare earth minerals resulting in a humongous amount of RADIOACTIVE waste; in the form of gas, liquid and solids.
5. Lynas is not sending the radioactive waste back to Australia, because the government of Australia forbids it. So yeap, it will be disposed in Malaysia.
6. Errrr…how will it be disposed?
7. Some said the radioactive waste will be dumped into the South China Sea. Some said it will be dumped on open ground just like what happened in Bukit Merah. Yeah, I know right, I also didn’t know that we actually had experienced radioactive disaster in our very own Malaysia too!
8. Then I immediately googled “How far does radiation spread?”. Basically, 50km radius is YOU ARE SCREWED ZONE.
9. And crap, it doesn’t stop spreading. The radioactive levels just get lesser as it gets further but THEY DON’T STOP.
10. Which means, although we are 260kms away from Lynas in the comfort of Klang Valley, we are all also at risk.
11. I have relatives in Mentakab and they are a pretty far 140kms away but for them to just be in the same negeri/state concerns me.
12. Our food sources, seafood sources, water sources….they are all at risk.
13. Let me put it this way, if the Japanese can fail to defend their own nuclear power plant, how much faith should I put into our government and in the Ozzies for ensuring a radioactive disaster-free life?
14. 5 years? 15? 25? 30 years is about the maximum and bloody hell, I should still be alive then, possibly with grandchildren.
15. Or not, cause exposure to radiation affects fertility.
I believe we should tell everyone we know what Lynas is. Read up about it. Speak out. Don’t ignore your gut feelings.
# – By the way, the Himpunan Hijau 2.0, a peaceful protest against Lynas plant is happening today at these locations:
And that’s what an average dumbass such as I, thinks about it.
So what are you? An average dumbass or just average?