No residues from the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant (Lamp) would be exported out from Malaysia, says the factory’s managing director, Mashal Ahmad.

Marshal said Lamp needed to abide by international conventions which prohibit the export of toxic wastes to overseas countries, according to Guang Ming Daily’Facebook page.

The wastes have been a point of contention because they was allegedly contain radioactive materials, which leads to the fear of radioactive poisoning.

Meanwhile, Mashal claimed that Lamp had spent a few million ringgit to counter anti-Lynas allegations, according to a Sinchew Daily report.

NONEHe said Lamp had experienced a difficult time in the past two years “because of the anti-Lynas movement’s baseless allegations.”

“They (the anti-Lynas movement) just want to poison the public mindset,” he was quoted as saying.

Furthermore, he claimed that Lamp had to unnecessary spend RM2 million to purchase two radioactive detection monitoring systems - installed at Lamp and at the Kuantan police station - to rebut the allegation.

Meanwhile, Bernama reports that the Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) has stationed its officers at the Lynas plant on a full-time basis to regulate and supervise continuously each stage of the trial processing of lanthanide concentrates. 

AELB, in a statement in Kuala Lumpur today, said that it needed to ensure that all national laws and safety standards, as well as the international good practice for such operations were being adhered to. 

“Continuous regulatory and supervision should also be carried out on the importing activity for lanthanide concentrates to Malaysia,” the statement said.

NONEThe statement said Lynas (M) Sdn Bhd had started its trial processing of lanthanide concentrates in stages and in limited quantities in line with the requirements stated in the temporary operating licence (TOL). 

“Under Section 22 of the Atomic Energy Licensing Act 1994 (Act 304), if the company committed a breach of any of the conditions of the licence or committed an offence under this Act, the AELB may cancel or suspend the TOL issued to the company. 

“The company’s operation will also be stopped immediately pending further actions under the same Act,” the statement said. 

AELB had issued the TOL to Lynas (M) Sdn Bhd on Sept 3, 2012 after the board was satisfied that Lynas had fulfilled all technical aspects, as well as all regulatory requirements. 

Comparison of radiation levels

Bernama also reports that during a briefing, Lynas radiology safety adviser Prof Dr Ismail Bahari also demonstrated to the residents the comparison of radiation levels between the raw materials to be turned into rare earth metal and other raw materials such as monazide and iron ore. 

Apart from discovering that the radiation level of the raw materials for rare earth metal was much lower that other raw materials, the residents also had the opportunity to hold and smell the rare earth materials which were deemed dangerous by the opposition. 

A resident, Mokhtar Mamat, 63, said he was able to understand the plant’s operation better and would share the information with other residents so that they would get a clearer picture on the issue. 

Sariah Awang Ngah, 45, from Kampung Sungai Karang Darat, on the other hand, said she used to have doubts about the safety aspects of the plant. 

“Today, I know for sure what rare earth is all about. I used to listen to others, but during the demonstration today, I know exactly what Lynas will be doing at the plant,” she said, according toBernama

Lynas chose to operate in Malaysia because of its cheaper production costs compared to Australia while China had tightened export of the product. Lynas, too, had obtained licences to build the factory in the two countries.