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The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

US govt takes 4 years to respond – and reject – petition to to close Fukushima-style nuclear reactors

exclamation-SmFlag-USAFour years later, NRC rejects Beyond Nuclear and 10,000+ co-petitioners’ call to close Fukushima-style reactors Beyond Nuclear 23 jan 15  After nearly four years of behind closed doors deliberations, on January 15, 2015, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) issued its “Final Director’s Decision” rejecting the April 13, 2011emergency enforcement petition filed by Beyond Nuclear along with more than 10,000 co-petitioners from around the country. The public emergency enforcement petition called for the immediate suspension of the continued operation of the General Electric Mark I boiling water reactors in the U.S. that are identical to Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors units 1, 2 and 3 that exploded and melted down following the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

The NRC makes its best case for dismissing the petition by arguing that “each of the Petitioner’s requests has been addressed through other actions.”  We acknowledge that after four years a portion of the actions that we requested in April 2011 have been taken at some of these reactors. However, we strongly disagree with the NRC’s overall conclusion that each and every action request is addressed and that the public health and safety hazard is resolved such that the petition can be legitimately dismissed in total. We remain concerned that the agency is not capable of effective regulation and enforcement given the long standing nature of the Mark I reactor hazards and a recalcitrant nuclear industry that first considers its financial margins over public safety margins.

Regrettably, we recognize that under existing NRC provisions (Chapter 10 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulation Part 2.206) the public has absolutely no recourse to appeal a Director’s Decision to the Commission level or legally challenge Mark I design vulnerability and its operational hazards in a court of law. This denial of due process comes in spite of the fact that agency orders and industry corrective actions referenced in dismissing the petitioner are inadequate half measures that need not be fully implemented for years still to come, if ever. In critical safety areas for the Mark I, the proposed corrective actions credited in the Director’s Decision are not even conceptually finalized nor approved by the regulator as we approach the fourth anniversary of the nuclear catastrophe. Moreover, there are numerous agency staff non-concurrences on how to even proceed with post-Fukushima action plans………….

Any one of the hazards cited for suspension of the operating licenses in the April 2011 petition serves as ample reason for why the GE Mark I reactors need to be promptly and permanently shuttered.  But a primary focus remains on the threat of catastrophic failure of the Mark I containment under severe accident conditions.

The petitioners remain concerned that because the GE Mark I containment system is only 1/6th the size by volume of a typical pressurized water reactor like Three Mile Island it will not reliably serve to “contain” the tremendous pressures, extreme heat, explosive hydrogen gas and highly radioactive releases associated with an accident involving reactor core damage. In fact, this was demonstrated by a 100% failure rate of the Mark I containment systems for Fukushima Daiichi Units 1, 2 and 3 which were operating at full power at the time of the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami. The current action plan is  a rehash of a 1989 “fix” to deliberately vent a nuclear accident to the environment by temporarily defeating the containment concept to save it from permanent rupture. Moreover, the current NRC order to improve the reliability of containment venting systems similar to those that failed Fukushima, need not be fully implemented by industry until 2019.

Ironically, when the NRC’s Japan Lessons Learned Task Force reviewed the nuclear catastrophe for recommending modifications to the U.S. Fukushima-style reactors, the staff concluded that what was really needed was not only an enhanced hardened containment vent for the controlled release of heat, pressure and explosive gas but requiring the re-institution of the defense-in-depth concept to more reliably contain the high-level radioactive releases that would also be generated by the nuclear accident. On November 29, 2012, the Japan Lessons Learned Task Force recommended that the Commission issue an Order to all GE Mark I and Mark II boiling water reactor operators to promptly install hardened containment vents with the engineered radiation filters as a “cost-benefited substantial safety enhancement.” The nuclear industry vigorously opposed the additional radiation filter concept on economic grounds and “unintended consequences” and successfully lobbied the five-member Commission by majority vote to reject the filter recommendation on containment vents. The Commission instructed the NRC staff to take up consideration of the installation of radiation filters  in a proposed rulemaking and gather independent scientific expert experience as well as public and industry comments. However, in December 2014, the NRC rulemaking staff reversed course for considering the addition of external radiation filters and now seeks to abandon the rulemaking process effectively locking out public and independent expert input.

Our common struggle for real public safety, environmental protection and energy independence remains to permanently closing down an inherently dangerous atomic power industry.

Keep your eyes on the prize and hold on. http://www.beyondnuclear.org/freeze-our-fukushimas/2015/1/21/four-years-later-nrc-rejects-beyond-nuclear-and-10000-co-pet.h

January 24, 2015 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA | Leave a comment

As economics slowly kill nuclear power, activists hastened the death of Vermont Yankee Nuclear Facility

Throughout the U.S. and the world, the demise of atomic energy is accelerating. Some 435 reactors are listed worldwide as allegedly operable. But 48 in Japan remain shut in the wake of Fukushima despite the fierce efforts of a corrupt, dictatorial regime to force them back on line. Germany’s transition to a totally nuke-free green energy economy is exceeding expectations. The fate of dozens proposed and operating in China and India remains unclear.

protestFlag-USAActivists Permanently Shut Down Vermont Yankee Nuke Plant Today  | December 29, 2014 The Vermont Yankee atomic reactor goes permanently off-line today, Dec. 29, 2014. Citizen activists have made it happen. The number of licensed U.S. commercial reactors is now under 100 where once it was to be 1,000.

Decades of hard grassroots campaigning by dedicated, non-violent nuclear opponents, working for a Solartopian green-powered economy, forced this reactor’s corporate owner to bring it down. Entergy says it shut Vermont Yankee because it was losing money. Though fully amortized, it could not compete with the onslaught of renewable energy and fracked-gas. Throughout the world, nukes once sold as generating juice “too cheap to meter” comprise a global financial disaster. Even with their capital costs long-ago stuck to the public, these radioactive junk heaps have no place in today’s economy—except as illegitimate magnets for massive handouts. Continue reading

December 31, 2014 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA | Leave a comment

Criticism in Iran of Iran’s nuclear power programme

flag-IranNuclear Program Has ‘Hurt Iran More Than Iraq War’, Payvand Iran News, 18 Dec 14 
By Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL Iran’s nuclear activities and ambitions faced rare, blunt criticism at a roundtable at Tehran University, where one of the speakers said the damage done by the nuclear program was greater than that by the 1980-88 war with Iraq, which left tens of thousands dead and caused much devastation.

“The imposed war [with Iraq] did not damage us as much as the nuclear program has,” professor Sadegh Zibakalam said at the December 17 roundtable, according to reports by Iranian semiofficial news agencies.

Zibakalam also criticized the lack of public debate about the nuclear issue.

Other speakers were also critical of the nuclear program and its costs for Iranians, who have come under unprecedented U.S.-led sanctions that have made life more difficult.

Speaking at the event, former reformist lawmaker Ahmad Shirzad said nothing had come out of the nuclear program, “not even a glass of water.”…….

Shirzad said that he welcomed Iran’s official line, according to which the country is against building and acquiring nuclear weapons.

The former lawmaker also seemed to suggest that Iran would be better off without a civil nuclear program. “Iran doesn’t have the primary resources and know-how for a nuclear program,” he was quoted as saying by ISNA. He said Iran could assert itself in areas such as petrochemistry and natural gas, where the country has the resources and the knowledge………….

Criticism of the nuclear issue has been a red line in Iran, where media face tough censorship rules in their news coverage.

Shirzad said the nuclear issue has turned into a matter of “honor.” “When something becomes a matter of honor, discussing it is not possible anymore. And that has been our problem for the past 11 years,” he said.

Zibakalam said that under Iran’s previous administration, criticism of the nuclear issue was impossible. “Unfortunately from 2003 to 2013, debate about the different aspects of the nuclear issue was not possible. I believe that whenever people and the press are prevented from expressing their opinions on different issues, the result is not good,” he was quoted as saying.

He added that during those years whenever he would send a slightly critical piece to the press, “the editors would dump it in the closest trash can.”………http://www.payvand.com/news/14/dec/1098.html

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Iran, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Malaysian NGO firmly rejects nuclear power

logo-NO-nuclear-Smflag-MalaysiaNGO rejects nuclear option for Malaysia   | December 24, 2014

 Seven key factors why nuclear is not the way to go for Malaysia.KUALA LUMPUR: AMAN (ANAK MALAYSIA ANTI NUKLEAR), a grassroots citizen movement, has urged Putrajaya to abort EPP11: Deploying Nuclear Energy for Power Generation, part of the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP), or any other similar plan, and “instead concentrate and focus efforts on renewable energy and energy efficiency”.

AMAN is convinced that nuclear power is neither cheap, clean nor safe. “It is not required for the generation of electricity in Malaysia,” said Aman chairman Dr. Ronald McCoy in a statement.

“AMAN therefore rejects the construction of any nuclear power plant (NPP) in Malaysia.”

AMAN, according to its statement, has taken this position, based on seven key factors: possibility of nuclear weapons proliferation; energy security; extremely expensive; vulnerable to natural disasters and accidents; a ticking time bomb; Malaysia’s existing and planned electricity by other means are sufficient; and the rate of construction of NPPs is skydiving.

AMAN was aware of the ongoing dissemination of false information by the nuclear industry and other vested interests, added the NGO, and “there has not been any genuine transparency of the government’s intentions nor sincere public consultation”.

“Our country must not make the serious mistake of investing in and constructing a nuclear power plant, particularly when there is no existing method of safely disposing the long-lasting radioactive nuclear waste, which will threaten the health of future generations of Malaysians.”

Globally, the use of nuclear power as an energy source was in decline, the statement points out.

Some figures:………….http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2014/12/24/ngo-rejects-nuclear-option-for-malaysia/

December 24, 2014 Posted by | Malaysia, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Anti nuclear activists challenge pro nuclear Taiwan government

Protest-No!flag-TaiwanNuclear backers, critics clash at public meeting, Taipei Times By Sean Lin  /  Staff reporter 22 Dec 14 Anti-nuclear energy activists clashed with their pro-nuclear counterparts on Saturday at an event in Taipei held to gather public opinions in preparation for next month’s energy conference.

The conference is set to focus on identifying alternative energy sources after the construction of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s Gongliao District (貢寮) was suspended over widespread protests about the safety risks of the facility.The wide divide among advocates and critics of nuclear energy became clear soon after the northern preliminary meeting began……………

Taoyuan Local Union director-general Pan Chung-cheng (潘忠政) said he suspects that the Atomic Energy Council has mobilized many state-sponsored and pro-nuclear academics and members of related groups to attend the meetings because the public generally opposes nuclear energy.

“The government can work with academics and provide all these scientific facts about the benefits of nuclear power, but at the end of the day, the decision as to whether to adopt nuclear energy should be decided by the public,” he said.

“I do not think they really understand how people feel about nuclear energy and their actions are a violation of democratic values,” he said.http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2014/12/22/2003607328

December 22, 2014 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Austria contests EU funding for UK’s Hinkley Point nuclear project

Hinkley-nuclear-power-plantAustrians resist EU funding for UK’s Hinkley Point nuclear project EurActive, 18 Dec 14  Austrian premier Werner Faymann will today (18 December) protest at the British inclusion of landmark nuclear energy projects – including Hinckley Point – within its list of infrastructure eligible for funding under the proposed €315bn Juncker investment plan.

The UK has listed several nuclear-related projects within the Juncker plan, a list of 2,000 projects drawn from across all member states, which will be considered for funding under the investment plan.

“We see the need for Austria to point out that our contributions [to the Juncker plan] will not feed the demands of the nuclear energy industry,” Austrian environment minister Andrä Rupprechter told journalists in Brussels yesterday (17 December) according to a report by the Austrian Press Agency (APA)……..http://www.euractiv.com/sections/energy/austrians-resist-eu-funding-uks-hinkley-point-nuclear-project-310919

December 19, 2014 Posted by | EUROPE, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Cree anti uranium marchers reach Montreal in time to take part in hearings

nuke-indigenousCree march against uranium arrives in Montreal in time for hearings ROBERTO ROCHA, MONTREAL GAZETTE  December 15, 2014 Three weeks after they left Mistissini on foot to protest against uranium mining in northern Quebec, a group of 20 Cree youths arrived in Montreal Monday.

The group braved blizzards and temperatures as low as minus-28 C as they marched 850 kilometres across the province to take part in environmental hearings on uranium mining.

They fear the waste from mining would contaminate the land and water of Cree communities and encroach on trap lines, and want a ban on uranium exploration.

A hearing by the Bureau d’audiences publiques sur l’environnement (BAPE) on uranium mining wrapped up on Monday, with a final report expected next May.

“The potential risks associated with uranium mining, which leaves behind thousands of years of radioactive material, that’s what concerns our people,” Chief Richard Shecapio of Mistissini told reporters shortly before the hearings began.

The Cree Nation Youth Council argues that uranium mining would affect tourism, as the region is a popular getaway for fishers………

There’s a moratorium on uranium exploration in Quebec, imposed last year by the previous Parti Québécois government. Before that time, the only uranium project seeking an exploration permit was Strateco Resources Inc.’s Matoush site in the Otish mountains, about 275 kilometres north of Chibougamau.

Yves-François Blanchet, the environment minister at the time, said no permits would be issued for the exploration or mining of uranium until an independent study on the mineral’s social acceptability and environmental impacts had been completed.

Last week, Strateco Resources filed a $190-million lawsuit against the Quebec government for blocking its project after years of ground work.

rrocha@montrealgazette.com
twitter.com/robroc   http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/cree-march-against-uranium-arrives-in-montreal-in-time-for-hearings

December 17, 2014 Posted by | Canada, indigenous issues, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Australian uranium mining project strongly opposed by Zambia’s Green Party

protest-2the uranium mining issue a symptom of an extremely serious malaise affecting Zambia.

ZEMA and Zambia are woefully unqualified to deal with the environmental effects of the proposed uranium mining upstream of the Park and the management of the radiation and its very serious genetic impacts on people.

The Green Party of Zambia and the Lower Zambezi National Park Preserving the Zambezi ecosystem  Ian Manning 16 Dec 14,The leader of the Green Party of Zambia, Peter Sinkamba, has set out their platform for the Presidential elections of 20 January 2015: to cancel the mining licence issued to Australia’s Zambezi Resources Limited for the Lower Zambezi National Park. Reading this, the electorate will wonder what could possibly be so important about the proposed mining of a National Park. And why do the Greens consider it the single most important issue facing Zambia today?

At one level the mining saga does signal dysfunctional undemocratic malgovernance, requiring a President – given the flawed Constitution handed to Kaunda by Britain that contained no safeguards against the use of excessive Executive power – who is wise and somewhat unworldy, but, above all, a visionary.
The mining, which would utterly destroy Lower Zambezi, poison the Zambezi River and destroy an ecotourim industry was, after all, refused by 17 Chiefs of the Zambezi Basin – now greatly empowered by the Nagoya Protocol of the Biodiversity Convention; by the MMD Government; by Parliament’s environmental committee; by the PF Government’s own Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA), a decision later overturned by the Minister. And mining would negate Zambia’s membership of the Convention on Biological Diversity; run counter to its membership of various United Nations bodies; make impossible the declaration of a World Heritage Site joined with Mana Pools; contradict the IUCN’s definition of a National Park; and dishonour the Stockholm and Rio Declarations which bind the nations of the Zambezi Basin under a code of good environmental stewardship. The list is a long one. But are they sufficient reasons to provide a political party with a presidential candidate?

Perhaps Sinkamba sees the mining issue – as do I – as a symptom of an extremely serious malaise affecting Zambia. For the mining issue removes the trousers to reveal a suppurating Zambian ulcer on the nations bottom: the continuing existence of a dictatorial, grasping Executive, uncurbed by Government, Parliament, the Judiciary or the Constitution……………..

As a backdrop to this crime against customary people, the International Tribunal for the Rights of Nature meeting took place on 5 and 6 December 2014 in Lima, the judges referring ‘to the Rights of Nature and the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth, from the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth in Cochabamba, Bolivia in 2010’. ………….

Another reason, I would hope, for putting the mining up in lights, is that the Greens need to expose the fact that consumer capitalism is dying, and that therefore Zambia should adjust its thinking; for we live in a world of declining resources, one increasingly prone to Liebig’s Law where the amount that a species or ecosystem can produce in a given place and time is limited by the resource in shortest supply – something politicians fail to understand……………….

For mining the  SNDP lists the mid-Zambezi uranium mines as coming into production – for which no strategic EIA has been conducted, let alone full environmental management plans – as a UNESCO/IUCN mission discovered – mandatory for the issue of prospecting and large-scale mining licences.

ZEMA and Zambia are woefully unqualified to deal with the environmental effects of the proposed uranium mining upstream of the Park and the management of the radiation and its very serious genetic impacts on people. Brugge & Buchner of Tufts University in 2011 concluded that ‘the strong biological plausibility of adverse effects on the brain, on reproduction, including estrogenic effects, on gene expression, and on uranium metabolism’ will not only affect mine workers but also villagers living near uranium mines and processing facilities. They ended on a chilling note, ‘As much damage is irreversible, and possibly cumulative’. In addition, no strategic socio-environmental impact study has been made of the State’s past and present programmes; nor has there been given any thought to maintaining the integrity of Zambia’s cultural and religious heritage………

The Green Party, with the Lower Zambezi National Park as its platform, has certainly provided a litmus test for the future.

For more information on the issue see:

https://www.change.org/petitions/director-general-zambia-wildlife-authority-prohibit-mining-in-the-lower-zambezi-national-Park

(Archived by WebCite® at http://www.webcitation.org/6CeIIPlmD)

Future publication by I. P. A. Manning:

Out of Zambia: its history, conservation and plunder; and an alternative way    http://zambeziheritage.wordpress.com/

December 17, 2014 Posted by | AFRICA, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Marathon walk by Cree youth to stop uranium mining in Quebec

Cree Youth Walk 850 km To Protest Against Uranium Mining In Quebec, Huff Post. CBC 14 Dec 14 nuke-indigenous flag-canadaAbout 20 young Cree people have walked nearly 850 kilometres to Montreal’s South Shore from their village in northern Quebec, protesting against uranium exploration in the province.

The youth left Mistissini, Que., northeast of Chibougamau in the James Bay region three weeks ago. On the way, they stopped in Quebec City to share their message. They arrived in Longueuil, just across the bridge from Montreal, Saturday.

Their final destination is downtown Montreal, where they will deliver that message to the province’s environmental protection agency, known as the BAPE, when it holds the last of a series of public hearings on uranium exploration tomorrow.

The Cree young people have endured frigid temperatures and wintry conditions, walking an average of a marathon a day. “We’ve lost a couple of toenails on this journey,” said Joshua Iserhoff, chair of the Cree Nation Youth Council.

But according to Iserhoff, it’s been worth it.

He said uranium exploration near his community could cause irreparable damage to the watershed………

Now the province is holding public hearings on uranium mining. http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2014/12/14/cree-uranium-mining-protest_n_6322934.html

December 15, 2014 Posted by | Canada, indigenous issues, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

“Stop uranium mining, transportation, enrichment and nuclear fuel production”

protest-2“Stop uranium mining, transportation, enrichment and nuclear fuel production”, Indymedia Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 04/12/2014 Münster, Germany, 30 November 2014 – – At a two-day meeting here around 50 anti-nuclear activists from Russia, France, The Netherlands and from across Germany demanded an immediate end to the countless transports of uranium which ensure nuclear operations in Europe and elsewhere round the world.

They also demanded an end to uranium mining and processing everywhere. They demanded that the German government close down uranium enrichment in Gronau and production of nuclear fuel in Lingen.

Both factories are not included in the shutdown of nuclear power production planned for Germany and supply power stations around the world.

The conference participants intensively discussed the considerable dangers created by the mostly secret uranium transports.

They tracked them from mining in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan through Russia across the Baltic Sea through the Kiel Canal to the central uranium transportation hub in the port of Hamburg.

From there the uranium concentrate rolls by train through Lower Saxony, Bremen, North-Rhine Westphalia and the Mosel/Saar region for processing in Narbonne-Malvési and Pierrelatte in southern France.

As uranium hexafluoride it then moves back to Germany for enrichment in Gronau or not far into The Netherlands at the same kind of plant at Almelo.

The next step is the Areva fuel production in Lingen, before the final products often move again through Hamburg or also Rotterdem to all over the world.

The conference condemned as unacceptable that in many ways France, Germany, Russia and The Netherlands continue to enable a future for the nuclear industry.

The activists also demand determined action from the German state governments to stop the growing number of uranium transports which endanger countless people……………

The conference ended on 30 November with protests outside the Gronau and Lingen plants.

In Lingen a woman representing the French anti-nuclear umbrella organisation, Réseau “Sortir du nucléaire” called for immediate closure of the Areva fuel factory. Areva is a globally operating French corporation.

Areva currently has big financial problems and the Lingen operations had to be downsized some weeks ago because of serious technical problems.

The activists announced more joint protects against uranium transportation and the uranium industry as a whole.

More information in German at www.urantransport.dewww.sofa-ms.dewww.robinwood.dewww.wise-uranium.org,www.umweltfairaendern.de

Pictures of the conference at
http://www.anti-atom-aktuell.de/fotos/20141129-internationales-urantrans…    https://indymedia.org.au/2014/12/04/stop-uranium-mining-transportation-enrichment-and-nuclear-fuel-production

 

December 5, 2014 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, UK | Leave a comment

Swedish petition to Finland, opposing Fennovoima nuclear facility

flag-Swedenlogo-NO-nuclear-SmSwedish NGO delivers anti-Fennovoima petition toFinland http://www.rcinet.ca/eye-on-the-arctic/2014/12/03/swedish-ngo-delivers-anti-fennovoima-petition/by Radio Sweden

Members of a Swedish civic organisation collected and delivered more than 20,000 signatures from individuals protesting the proposed construction of a nuclear power plant in northwest Finland by the power consortium Fennovoima.

The delegation from the Swedish NGO Nuclear-free Gulf of Bothnia (Kärnkraftsfritt Bottenviken) visited the Finnish parliament Tuesday morning to hand over the petition on behalf of more than 170,000 residents of seven municipalities that lie close to the proposed construction site of the Pyhäjoki nuclear power plant. The site in northwest Finland lies just 155 kilometres from the Swedish coast.

“Because of the natural environment Hanhikivi is an extremely poor choice to locate a nuclear power plant,” activist Kristina Berg told lawmakers in Helsinki.

Earlier this year, demonstrators gathered in the centre of the Swedish coastal city of Luleå ahead of a public hearing on the proposed plant in Pyhäjoki, near Raahe.

Environmental impact on Sweden?

The protesters have long been worried about the potential environmental impact of the nuclear facility on the Swedish side of the Gulf of Bothnia. Many have demanded a fundamental re-think of the project and have also called for a system of sustainable energy that is not based on continuous growth.

Residents of the Swedish communities have also pointed to the strong role of the Russian state-owned nuclear contractor Rosatom in the proposed project, even charging that Finland is outsourcing its energy needs to Russia.

The petition was delivered as Finland’s largest power producer Fortum announced plans to buy a stake in the Fennovoima nuclear power plant, taking it one step closer to reality.

The cabinet had previously dictated that the plant should be at least 60 percent domestic or European-owned as a prerequisite for a final go-ahead. Fortum’s investment would take Finnish ownership to 66 percent, helping the project meet the government’s criterion.

December 3, 2014 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, Sweden | Leave a comment

Call for independent Radiation Monitoring in Cumbria and Lancashire

‘Nuclear Madness’ Protest at Carlisle Railway Station  http://mariannewildart.wordpress.com/2014/11/24/nuclear-madness-protest-at-carlisle-railway-station/

100 people also stopped to sign a letter to Cumbria and Lancashire County Council regarding the lack of independent radiation monitoring .

Radiation Free Lakeland  The letter says:

Dear Cumbria and Lancashire County Council,Dear Cumbria and Lancashire County Council,

RADIATION RELEASES TO THE ENVIRONMENT

The North West’s environment used to be independently monitored by the council run Radiation Monitoring in Lancashire, RADMIL.

RADMIL was stopped a few years ago due to council cuts.  The Environment Agency often leaves monitoring and reporting to the nuclear industry

The nuclear industry and government’s new build plan includes:

Manufacture of fuel for new reactors. This begins with uranium hexafluoride shipped to Ellesmere Port, then to Capenhurst, Near Chester. Then on to Preston’s Springfields plant. Proposed new nuclear build on greenfields in Cumbria would also mean escalating radioactive releases from fuel manufacture.

This means radioactively polluting the River Ribble and Clifton Marsh Landfill in Lancashire. And in Cumbria increasing releases to the Irish Sea, Lillyhall landfill and previously nuclear free areas!   Nuclear materials are routinely sent by train and road and even by plane.

Given this escalation in radioactive emissions we urge you to reinstate regular and frequent independent radiation monitoring in Cumbria and Lancashire 

November 26, 2014 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, UK | Leave a comment

Determined campaign by Northern Quebec Cree against uranium mining and exploration

nuke-indigenousflag-canadaNorthern Quebec Cree start 850 km trek to protest against uranium mining  By Caroline Nepton, CBC News Nov 21, 2014  “……this weekend Iserhoff, who is the chair of the Cree Nation Youth Council, will join a group of Crees walking to Montreal to hand deliver a message to the province’s environmental protection agency’s (BAPE) commission on the uranium industry in Quebec.

The group has a message for BAPE: There will be no uranium exploration and exploitation on the Cree territory of Eeyou Istchee.

“We are the stewards of the land, therefore we have this responsibility to protect for the generations to come,” Iserhoff said.

The walkers will be leaving Mistissini this Sunday to travel over 850 kilometers to reach Montreal by Dec. 15, the last day of the BAPE’s public hearings on the uranium industry in Quebec.

They want other nations and other Quebecers to join the walk. “Innu’s are coming, Algonquins are coming and maybe Atikamekw,”  Iserhoff said. ‘The Crees are only one voice and so we are seeking allies.’- Matthew Coon Come, grand chief of Cree Grand Council 

The trek is one of the many strategies used by the Crees to protest against uranium mining in their territory.

The Cree Nation government firmly opposes all uranium exploration, mining and waste storage in Eeyou Istchee, Cree territory in northern Quebec. A couple of weeks ago the Cree government launched a website and a social campaign: #StandAgainstUranium.  They are still asking people to take selfies with the Stand Against Uranium sign.

The government also sponsored The Wolverine: The Fight of the James Bay Creewhich was presented at the Uranium Festival in Germany last September.

“The Crees are only one voice and so we are seeking allies,” saidMatthew Coon Come, the grand chief of the Cree Grand Council.

One of the most advanced uranium projects in the province is the Strateco Resource Matoush project in Otish Mountain, north ofMistissini.

In 2013, Quebec became the third Canadian province, after Nova Scotia and British Columbia, to establish a moratorium on uranium development.   In light of that moratorium, Quebec’s environment minister refused to grant Strateco the permits it had requested to go ahead with the project. http://www.cbc.ca/news/aboriginal/northern-quebec-cree-start-850-km-trek-to-protest-against-uranium-mining-1.2844050

November 23, 2014 Posted by | Canada, indigenous issues, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Overwhelming public opposition is ignored by Japan’s government in pushing for nuclear power

logo-NO-nuclear-Smflag-japanEnergy plan overlooked flat-out opposition to nuclear power, analysis shows Asahi Shimbun, November 12, 2014 By ATSUSHI KOMORI/ Senior Staff Writer The government’s compilation of its basic energy plan ignored an overwhelming call from the public to move away from nuclear energy, according to an analysis by The Asahi Shimbun.

More than 90 percent of the comments submitted to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in response to the government’s proposed plan were against nuclear power, the analysis showed.

Yet nuclear energy was described as an “important base-load electricity source” in the plan approved by the Abe Cabinet in April.

The Asahi received a total of 18,711 comments from the ministry after submitting an information disclosure request.

Among them, 17,665, or 94.4 percent of the total, expressed opposition to restarting operations at nuclear power plants or called for decommissioning them.

Only 213 comments, or 1.1 percent, were in favor of maintaining or further promoting nuclear energy……….

The ministry disclosed 2,109 of the comments in May, with the remainder made available to the Asahi………

In 2012, when the Democratic Party of Japan held the reins of government, it called for a national debate on what rate of power generation nuclear energy should account for in 2030.

About 89,000 public comments were received, with about 90 percent of them in favor of a move away from nuclear energy.http://ajw.asahi.com/article/0311disaster/fukushima/AJ201411120044

November 15, 2014 Posted by | Japan, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

An alliance of German activist groups wants to stop nuclear waste export to the USA

Protest-No!flag_germanyfrom Diet Simon,  13 Nov 14  An alliance of German environment activists plans to prevent the export of CASTOR containers with highly radioactive fuel pebbles to the USA from Jülich and Ahaus.

When the supervisory board of the Jülich research centre meets on 19 November to discuss what to do with the CASTORS there, activists will mount a protest outside.

The activists argue that several expertises show that the thought-about exports of highly radioactive materials to South Carolina would be illegal. They say government plans to produce legality by simply relabeling the commercially operated Jülich reactor an experimental one won’t work.

“The AVR reactor is without a doubt an output reactor and is listed that way by the Federal Agency for Radiation Protection. That brings it under the law changed last summer which bans the export of radioactive fuel elements and requires the safest possible storage in Germany,” suggests Rainer Moormann, who used to work in the power station and the research centre.

Peter Bastian of the SOFA Münster group emphasises the aspect of societal responsibility: “Though the operators of atomic facilities try to shirk their responsibility for highly radioactive waste, exporting the radiating problems abroad is no solution in our view. An out of sight, out of mind strategy that makes innocent third parties suffer is unacceptable for the disposal of our atomic waste.“

Kerstin Ciesla, of BUND, the German section of Friends of the Earth, demands that the coalition parties in the North-Rhine Westphalian state government, Social Democrats and Greens, keep to their coalition agreement. “That stipulates that the CASTORS, especially those stored in Jülich, will be transported only one more time, and that is to a final repository once a location has been found for one. We will not sit back and watch the coalition agreement being broken, we will try to stop this transport with all the means we can muster.”

The catchcry of the anti-nuclear movement, “Nothing in, nothing out!“ is the basic tenet of the new alliance, currently comprising 13 groups, with more likely to come on board.

At the end of September a tour through Germany with Tom Clements, a South Carolina environmental activist and politician, who heads the Savannah River Site Watch, kicked off the joint activism. The alliance plans to build on that success and decided on continuous cooperation.

The following organisations have joined the alliance:

November 15, 2014 Posted by | Germany, opposition to nuclear, wastes | Leave a comment

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