Exposed: Scary details of SA’s secret Russian nuke deal , Mail & Guardian 2 Sept 15 The secret nuclear deal our leaders have signed with Russia carries many risks for South Africa. Shocking details of the secret nuclear deal that Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson signed with Russia last year can, for the first time, be revealed. The text, which has been jealously guarded by her department and Russian nuclear company Rosatom, holds many dangers for South Africa.
It creates an expectation that Russian technology will be used for South Africa’s trillion-rand fleet of new nuclear power stations. And by laying the groundwork for government-to-government contracting, it appears designed to sidestep the constitutional requirement for open and competitive tendering.
Once the agreement comes into force, the Russians will have a veto over South Africa doing business with any other nuclear vendor. And it will be binding for a minimum of 20 years, during which Russia can hold a gun to South Africa’s head, in effect saying: “Do business with us, or forget nuclear.”
The agreement confirms the government’s intention to make “Atomic Tina’s” energy department the procuring agent for the nuclear programme rather than Eskom – where the country’s nuclear expertise lies, despite the utility’s travails. Joemat-Pettersson signed the agreement in Vienna on September 21 last year, three weeks after President Jacob Zuma held talks with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, at the latter’s country estate.
- Download the original signed agreement (Russian version)
- Download an English translation of the agreement…….
The terms of the agreement lean heavily in Russia’s favour. They:
- Indemnify the Russians from any liability arising from nuclear accidents during the reactors’ life. The agreement says South Africa is “solely responsible for any damage both within and outside the territory of the Republic of South Africa”;
- Hand the Russians a host of regulatory concessions and “special favourable treatment” in tax and other financial matters, but offer South Africa no such incentives; and
- Require Russia’s permission if South Africa wants to export nuclear technology it develops locally as a result of learning from the Russians, thereby hindering government’s aim that the nuclear new-build programme will develop a globally competitive local nuclear industry.
David Unterhalter, a University of Cape Town law professor and constitutional expert, this week said the agreement appeared to go far beyond the type of general framework document that government officials have declared it to be………
How we got the secret documentThe supposedly confidential agreement is published among the list of bilateral treaties on the website of the legal department of the Russian foreign ministry.
It was first obtained by South African environmental organisation Earthlife Africa Johannesburg by Russian anti-nuclear activist and head of Ecodefense Vladimir Slivyak, who got it from a source in the Russian foreign ministry. It is in Russian, and includes the signatures of Rosatom’s director general Sergey Kirienko and South African energy minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson.
A Russian translator commissioned by Earthlife to translate the agreement into English subsequently also found it publicly available on the ministry’s website.
amaBhungane has compared Joemat-Pettersson’s signature on the document with her signature on a current document; they are identical. amaBhungane has also commissioned its own translation of the agreement, which is available to download by clicking on the link at the top of this story. – Lionel Faull http://mg.co.za/article/2015-02-12-exposed-scary-details-of-secret-russian-nuke-deal/
Police ask that charges be filed against former head of Brazil’s nuclear power company http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2015/08/28/police-ask-that-charges-be-filed-against-former-head-brazil-nuclear-power/ SAO PAULO – Police say they have asked prosecutors to file charges against the former head of Eletronuclear, the state-owned company that operates Brazil’s two nuclear power plants, for his suspected role in a bribery scandal.
A federal police spokesman who was not authorized to be quoted by name said late Thursday that the department wants prosecutors to charge Othon Luiz Pinheiro da Silva with money laundering and corruption for allegedly taking as much as $10 million in bribes from construction companies for contracts involving the construction of the Angra 3 nuclear plant in Rio de Janeiro.
Da Silva was taken into custody in late July and one week later stepped down as Eletronuclear’s chief executive officer.
The spokesman said the department also wants charges filed against Flavio David Barra, the top energy executive at construction firm Andrade Gutierrez and da Silva’s daughter Ana Cristina Toniolo for their suspected roles in the scheme. Da Silva, his daughter and Barra have denied any wrongdoing.
During Brazil’s military regime from 1964-1985, the retired navy admiral and nuclear engineer headed Brazil’s secret program to master the technology needed to transform uranium into fuel to generate electric power in nuclear plants. Da Silva also oversaw the ongoing project to build a nuclear powered submarine.
The request for charges to be filed come as police and prosecutors try to determine whether a kickback scheme engulfing state-run oil company Petrobras extends to other state firms, including electric utilities company Eletrobras, of which Eletronuclear is a subsidiary.
Prosecutors have said the scheme involved roughly $2 billion in bribes and other illegal funds. Some of that money was allegedly funneled back to the ruling Workers’ Party and its allies’ campaign coffers. It also allegedly included the payment of bribes to Petrobras executives in return for inflated contracts.
For Alexandre Barros, a political risk consultant with the Brasilia-based firm Early Warning, the Eletronuclear case shows that Petrobras-like corruption and kickback schemes are “probably present in other state-run companies.”
“Schemes like these have long been part of our culture and I think other similar schemes start emerging all over the place”, Barros said “My big fear is that the armed forces may start feeling uneasy,” he added, without elaborating.
Raw sewage backups at MUHC superhospital test relations with SNC-Lavalin AARON DERFEL, MONTREAL GAZETTE August 26, 2015 ,Black sewer water that “smells worse than rotten fish” is backing up drains and pooling in patient bathrooms at the new Montreal Children’s Hospital, angering staff who say the problem is widespread and keeps popping up despite the fact that plumbers are called in regularly to snake the drains.
The superhospital was built as a public-private partnership, with the Quebec engineering firm acting as the lead partner in a private consortium that is the landlord of the property. Unlike the Old Montreal Children’s where the MUHC could do what it wanted with the building as the sole owner, SNC-Lavalin is responsible for maintaining the superhospital and fixing plumbing, electrical and other problems.
he Koch political network has carefully singled out renewable energy while working to preserve government support for fossil fuels. Groups founded and funded by the Koch political network regard repealing oil and gas subsidies as a “tax hike” while deriding renewable energy subsidies as “a textbook case of corporate welfare.” Moreover, Koch’s lobbying campaign to distort climate science and prevent government action on greenhouse gas emissions transfers costs from the company, a major polluter, to the public.
Emails Show Koch Industries Backed Effort to Undermine Renewable Energy in Kansas Lee Fang https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2015/08/28/emails-show-koch-industries-backed-effort-undermine-renewable-energy-kansas/
Aug. 28 2015 Emails and financial documents released by the University of Kansas on Thursday reveal earmarked funding from Koch Industries to develop research used to lobby against the state renewable energy standard.
On November 12, 2013, Art Hall, the director of the university’s Center for Applied Economics, emailed Koch Industries’ Laura Hands to discuss a grant from a Koch-controlled foundation to fund research on the Renewable Portfolio Standard.
Hall is the former chief economist for Koch Companies Public Sector, the lobbying subsidiary of Koch Industries, the largest privately owned company in America with a significant stake in oil refining, pipelines, gas production and coal. Hands is the current community affairs director at Koch Companies Public Sector.
The Koch money was part of an ongoing project Hall described as an effort to develop “intellectual products” to be used “as a tool in economic policy debates.” Hall’s center also provides special classes to teach about the virtues of capitalism. Koch-controlled foundations approved $40,000 for work that included the renewable energy standard, as well as at least $250,000 to the center in 2008 and $100,000 to the center in 2009.
Following his grant request, Hall testified before the Kansas legislature in 2014 in favor of repealing the state renewable energy portfolio, which calls for major utility companies to use an increasing ratio of renewable energy such as wind and solar.
The emails and financial documents were released in response to a Kansas Open Records Act request filed by KU student Schuyler Kraus, the president of Students for a Sustainable Future.
Hall also helped craft unprecedented tax cuts signed into law by Gov. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., and backed by Koch’s local political network. The tax cuts have been viewed roundly as a historic flop, resulting in a downgrade of the state bond rating and drastic education cuts that forced public schools to close early this year. Critics argue that the tax cut and ensuing budget chaos may have hurt employment as bordering states such as Missouri are quicklyoutpacing Kansas on job growth.
President Barack Obama recently criticized Koch Industries owners Charles and David Koch, scolding the billionaires for “pushing for new laws to roll back renewable energy standards.” In response, Charles Koch said he is opposed to “crony capitalism” in all forms.
Though the Koch Industries chief executive has said that he opposes corporate subsidies or mandates of any kind, the Koch political network has carefully singled out renewable energy while working to preserve government support for fossil fuels. Groups founded and funded by the Koch political network regard repealing oil and gas subsidies as a “tax hike” while deriding renewable energy subsidies as “a textbook case of corporate welfare.” Moreover, Koch’s lobbying campaign to distort climate science and prevent government action on greenhouse gas emissions transfers costs from the company, a major polluter, to the public. CONTACT THE AUTHOR: Lee Fanglee.email@example.com@lhfang
South Australia’s Nuclear Fuel Chain Commission visited Toronto on 14tth July and had discussions on
the CANDU reactor design and technology. That CANDU technology is owned and marketed by SNC Lavalin.
RCMP charges SNC-Lavalin with fraud and corruption linked to Libyan projects Graeme Hamilton, Financial Post Staff | February
19, 2015MONTREAL – Once a jewel of the Quebec business establishment, SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. now stands criminally accused of fraud and corruption after the RCMP announced charges against the engineering giant Thursday.
The case against SNC and two of its subsidiaries stems from the company’s dealings in Libya between 2001 and 2011, when a senior executive established close ties with Saadi Gaddafi, son of dictator Muammar Gaddafi.
Court documents allege the company offered bribes worth $47.7 million “to one or several public officials of the ‘Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya,’” as Gaddafi called the nation he ruled until he was overthrown and killed in 2011.
SNC and its subsidiaries SNC-Lavalin Construction Inc. and SNC-Lavalin International Inc. are also alleged to have defrauded various Libyan public agencies of approximately $129.8 million.
“Corruption of foreign officials undermines good governance and sustainable economic development,” RCMP Assistant Commissioner Gilles Michaud said Thursday. “The charges laid today demonstrate how the RCMP continues to support Canada’s international commitments and safeguard its integrity and reputation.”
For SNC, the charges represent another black cloud in a storm the company has been trying to escape since a tip from Swiss authorities triggered the RCMP investigation, dubbed Project Assistance, in 2011……..
The RCMP investigation has already led to charges against former SNC executives Sami Bebawi and Stéphane Roy as well as Mr. Bebawi’s lawyer, Constantine Kyres. Riadh Ben Aissa, a former SNC vice-president, pleaded guilty in Switzerland last year to charges of corruption and money laundering related to SNC’s Libyan business. He has been extradited to Canada where he is facing fraud charges related to the awarding of the McGill University Health Centre contract to SNC. Former SNC CEO Pierre Duhaime is facing similar charges in connection with the MUHC project.
The charges, filed Thursday in Montreal, do not specify who received the bribes, but a previously released RCMP affidavit, containing unproven allegations, described Saadi Gaddafi as a major recipient of SNC’s largesse.
“Riadh Ben Aissa’s close relationship with Saadi Gaddafi was a major asset to SNC-Lavalin who was well aware of it and fostered the relationship,” the affidavit sworn in 2013 by Cpl. Alexandre Beaulieu said………
The contracts landed by SNC were grandiose projects with names to please the vanity of a dictator ……..
n Quebec, there was concern Thursday about the impact the new charges will have on a major economic player. The Federation of Quebec Chambers of Commerce issued a statement saying the charges cannot be allowed to harm SNC’s business. “We have to stop collectively knocking ourselves down and move to a reconstruction phase,” the federation said.
Karl Moore, a professor at McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management, said the charges come at a bad time for SNC. “They’ve actually really changed,” he said. “They’ve changed the culture and it’s squeaky clean. It’s one of the best engineering firms, from a compliance point of view, in the world.”
He does not think the company’s survival is at stake, but it will suffer. “This puts a bit of a cloud on them. When they’re out there seeing clients, there is some concern, and competitors will bring it up,” he said. “If I’m a competitor of SNC, I would take considerable delight in pointing out [its] weaknesses.”
The company has been ordered to appear in court in Montreal on April 14. http://business.financialpost.com/news/rcmp-charges-snc-lavalin-with-fraud-and-corruption-linked-to-libyan-projects
Lockheed Martin fined for using government money to lobby for more government money, http://theweek.com/speedreads/573689/lockheed-martin-fined-using-government-money-lobby-more-government-money The Week, Bonnie Kristian, 25 Aug 15,
Defense contracting giant Lockheed Martin has agreed to pay a fine to settle charges that the company illegally lobbied for a major government contract using federal funds. Lockheed targeted members of Congress and the Obama administration from 2009 to 2014, using money that had been allocated for research in a previous federal contract.
This is not the first time the contractor has used tax dollars to lobby for additional income. The Energy Department investigation that exposed these lobbying habits suggested Lockheed “felt empowered [to lobby this way] because it had improperly directed federal funds to similar activities in the past.”
The contract Lockheed unethically sought was worth $2.4 billion annually, and the company’s 2014 revenues totaled $45.6 billion — but the settlement payment was just $4.7 million. It’s a “slap on the wrist for the world’s biggest defense contractor to pay,” according to Jay Coghlan of Nuclear Watch New Mexico, who argues that Lockheed “engaged in deep and systemic corruption” which should result in criminal prosecution.
Lockheed Martin Nuclear Subsidiary Fined for Paying Lobbyists with Federal Funds, TIME, Patrick Malone Center for Public Integrity Aug. 24, 2015
The Sandia Corporation has agreed to reimburse the Energy Department after allegedly spending federal funds on lobbying instead of national security’
The payment by the Sandia Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin that operates Sandia National Laboratory in Albuquerque, resolved claims that the corporation violated two laws that bar such a use of federal funds.
It followed by nine months a restricted-access report by the Energy Department’s inspector general that accused Sandia of improperly trying to win a new contract without competition by lobbying senior Obama administration officials and key lawmakers with funds taken from its existing federal contract.
In his report, Inspector General Gregory Friedman described the company’s tactics as “highly problematic,” “inexplicable and unjustified,” and recommended that the Energy Department pursue reimbursement of the funds. A heavily-redacted copy of the report wasobtained by The Center for Public Integrity in June under the Freedom of Information Act.
“The money allocated by Congress for the Sandia National Laboratories is designed to fund the important mission carried out by our national laboratories, not to lobby Congress for more funding,” Benjamin C. Mizer, chief of the Justice Department’s Civil Division, said in a six-paragraph news release late Friday announcing the settlement……..
The settlement leaves open the door for the Justice Department to file criminal charges associated with the investigation, according to the eight-page formal agreement signed by representatives of Sandia and the Justice Department, which was obtained by the Center.
Sandia and Lockheed documents cited by Friedman described an extensive lobbying plan that targeted then-Energy Secretary Steven Chu, his family, friends and former colleagues at another nuclear lab, as well as key members of Congress. The effort, which occurred between 2008 and 2012 according to the Justice Department, was meant to block other companies from competing for a $2.4 billion a year contract to manage and operate Sandia National Laboratories. Its contract was set to expire in 2012.
The Justice Department barred Sandia Corporation from paying its multi-million dollar settlement and associated legal costs from its direct federal contract revenues. But Clark said the corporation planned to pay the fine from award fees – essentially bonuses for good performance – that it has previously received from the federal government. The amount represents 8 percent of the bonus payments Sandia Corporation received while the lobbying effort was under way, according to federal contract records………http://time.com/4007950/nuclear-weapon-sandia-lockheed/
How Harper turned a nuclear watchdog into a lapdog http://www.greenpeace.org/canada/en/blog/Blogentry/how-harper-turned-a-nuclear-watchdog-into-a-l/blog/53839/
Greenpeace and other environment groups asked the Commission today to release a study censored by CNSC staff because it apparently reveals weaknesses of offsite emergency response around the Darlington nuclear station.
We learned the study had been suppressed by requesting documents under federal Access to Information legislation, but its cover-up fits with the Harper government’s ongoing attack on our democratic institutions.
For a decade now the Harper government has gagged scientists, intimidated independent government watchdogs, and gutted environmental protection laws. All these attacks have a common objective: prevent the release of any information at odds with Harper’s goal of making Canada an energy “super power”.Whether it’s Alberta’s tar sands or Ontario and Saskatchewan’s nuclear industry, Harper’s endgame was to deny Canadians information that puts dirty power in a bad light.
The CNSC decision to suppress this public safety shows how much Harper’s succeeded.
One of Harper’s first attacks on arms-length watchdogs was when he fired the CNSC’s former president Linda Keen in 2008.
Keen was fired because she had the audacity to tell the Canadian nuclear industry they’d need to meet modern international nuclear safety standards if they wanted to build new reactors.
This angered the nuclear lobby, and especially the engineering giant SNC-Lavalin, who wanted to build new reactors on the cheap by cutting back on safety systems by building an outdated pre-Chernobyl, pre-September 11th reactor design.
SNC-Lavalin set out to have Keen ousted and found a sympathetic ear with Harper. Letting environmental protection block industry expansion is anathema to goals of the Harper government. Harper fired Keen and installed a more industry-friendly president.
The new president Michael Binder quickly remade the Commission in Harper’s image. The CNSC became an industry cheerleader with Binder even providing promotional quotes for industry press releases.
While the Harper government gutted environmental laws, Binder let it be known that environmental reviews would be little more than a foregone conclusion under his watch anyway.
And the muzzling of government scientists appears to be alive and well at the CNSC.
A 2014 Environics survey of federal scientists found CNSC staff often feel that politics trumps science at the Commission
CNSC scientists are the most likely (94%) to report “interference” with their manuscripts in the civil service. They are also the second most likely (57%) to be aware of incidents where the safety of Canadians had been compromised due to political interference.
The censored study we asked for today is a tangible example of how public safety assessments are being re-written for political ends.
In 2014, the CNSC released a severe accident study purportedly assessing the impacts of a “severe”accident at the Darlington nuclear station.
Such an assessment is needed because Ontario Power Generation (OPG) wants to extend the lives of four aging reactors at Darlington. Sitting just 60 km from downtown Toronto the Darlington reactors are located in Canada’s densely populated. This raises questions about the ability of Canada’s largest city to cope with a major nuclear accident.
The public had also pushed for this study. Following the Fukushima disaster hundreds of citizens called for such a study. It was a reasonable request. Believe it or not, the CNSC has never studied the consequences of a major Fukushima-scale accident in Canada.
CNSC staff reluctantly relented and committed to produce an accident study before hearings on OPG’s application to rebuild the aging Darlington reactors later this year.
But eyebrows were raised when the CNSC finally published the promised study in 2014. Media coverage focused on the study’s rather anti-intuitive conclusion: a severe accident at Darlington would have a negligible impact on the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).
I learned later the reason for the curious conclusion. Senior CNSC management had suppressed the original study, which did look at a Fukushima-scale radiation release.
According to documents I received through Access to Information, senior CNSC management stopped the release of the original study when apprised of its findings. They instructed staff to redo the study and exclude scenarios leading to a Fukushima-scale radiation release.
The justification to censor the study provided by CNSC Director Francois Rinfret shows how the CNSC has operationalized Harper’s policy of suppressing any evidence at odds with the expansion of major energy projects.
After Rinfret reviewed the study in early 2013, Rinfet told staff:
“I have taken a quick look at the draft submitted; indeed, this will become a focal point of any licence renewal, and despite brilliant attempts to caution readers, this document would be used malevolent-ly [sic] in a public hearing. It’s a no-win proposition whatever whatever (sic) we think the Commission requested.”
We were refused the details of the study, but Rinfret’s comments suggest the study reveals significant threats to public safety.
This makes sense. Ontario’s nuclear emergency plans effectively pre-date Chernobyl. Population is growing across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). There are surely weaknesses, especially in light of Fukushima.
An independent watchdog mandated to protect public safety would publish the data and use the information to improve safety requirements. But under Harper the CNSC is a lapdog with a mandate to protect the image and profits of the industry it regulates.
CNSC management were clearly concerned the study would be used to challenge the adequacy of the CNSC’s safety requirements. Worse, the public could decide the Darlington life-extension just isn’t worth the risk. Under the Harper regime, such inconvenient information is suppressed instead of being addressed by the government agencies.
We have nevertheless asked for the Commission to release the study. If public safety is at risk, it must be released – and we all need to call for its release.
Whatever the Commission’s response, Harper has created a dangerous culture at the CNSC. It puts Canadians at risk.
The public had good reason to ask for an assessment of the impacts of a Fukushima-type accident. Accidents are happening about once a decade internationally, and we need to know if Toronto could cope with such an event at Darlington before OPG is allowed to spend billions rebuilding the station.
As became clear after the Fukushima disaster, Japan’s industry-friendly nuclear regulator was a key cause of the accident.
Under Harper’s watch, the CNSC has been transformed from a watchdog into a lapdog. The parallels with Japan’s nuclear regulator before Fukushima are worrisome.
Let’s hope the next federal government cleans up the CNSC.
Nuclear Industry And Governments Trying To ‘End’ Nuclear Disasters By Passing Censorship, Secrecy And Cover Up Laws After Chernobyl, TMI, Fukushima http://agreenroad.blogspot.com.au/2015/08/nuclear-industry-and-governments-trying.html Part I – Click on CC at bottom of video for English subtitles Belarus and Chernobyl: time blurs the truth, while nuclear industry and government cover it up and deny the rest.
Groups want full nuclear report released http://www.durhamregion.com/news-story/5804511-groups-want-full-nuclear-report-released/ By The Canadian Press, 19 Aug 15, OTTAWA – Environmental groups are urging the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission to release a study on nuclear disaster scenarios that they say was suppressed.
The commission released a study last year looking at health and environmental consequences of accident scenarios, following the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan, but the groups say it wasn’t released in full.
Greenpeace, the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility and other environmental organizations say emails obtained through access to information requests show management at the nuclear commission censored the original draft.
They say the original study analyzed the impacts of a Fukushima-scale accident at the Darlington nuclear plant, 70 kilometres east of Toronto, but that wasn’t included in the version released to the public.
The groups cite an email from the director of the Darlington regulatory program division that says it would become a “focal point of any licence renewal” and would be used “malevolently” in a public hearing.
The nuclear commission is holding a hearing today in Ottawa on Ontario Power Generation’s application to extend the operating life of four aging Darlington reactors and the environmental groups want the Fukushima-scale analysis released before public submissions are due next month.
“The CNSC has betrayed the public trust by concealing a study revealing risks to Toronto,” said Shawn-Patrick Stensil, a senior energy analyst with Greenpeace. “The study should be released so these hazards can be addressed transparently and appropriate emergency plans put in place.”
After Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a Third Nuclear Atrocity: the Corruption of Science, CounterPunch, by CHRIS BUSBY 19 AUG 15 On the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, articles are appearing everywhere discussing the historical, philosophical, scientific, public health and social meaning of this event (I almost wrote ‘war crime’).
The bombings can be extrapolated onward in time through the atmospheric testing fallout and Chernobyl, to the more recent contamination in Japan after Fukushima.
Today, the analysis of the health risks from the Japanese A-Bombs is being cleverly twisted to provide a rationale for the development of nuclear weapons and nuclear energy.
Hiroshima and Nagasaki are not just some historical tableaux that we can weep crocodile tears over, and discuss as socio-historic phenomena.
They are here today, present as ghosts, in all the manipulations and devious calculations made by the international radiation risk agencies and nuclear-industry scientists giving results that continue to permit the release into the environment of the same deadly substances that emerged for the first time in 1945.
Abusing Hiroshima to deny nuclear bomb health damage
I am currently presenting a case for the British Atomic Test veterans in the Royal Courts of Justice in London. The case pivots on the faulty radiation and health risk model that is based on the Lifespan Study of the Japanese A-Bomb survivors. Continue reading
TTIP: what does the transatlantic trade deal mean for renewable energy?, Guardian, Tim Smedley, 5 Aug 15
Trade partnership between the EU and US could remove barriers facing the green energy sector, but experts warn of potential dangers. In July the transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP) came a step closer to reality. Formal talks have been ongoing for two years, but trying to create the world’s biggest free trade zone is no mean feat. Essentially, if passed, the EU and US will be able to trade without each other’s pesky tariffs or regulations getting in the way.
David Cameron is a big advocate, arguing it could add £10bn to the UK economy. Many others, meanwhile, criticise the undemocratic nature of the closed-door talks and sinister influence of powerful lobbyists.
But what would TTIP mean for renewable energy?………
TTIP could even undermine the democratic authority of local government. The UK’s Local Government Association representative in Brussels, Dominic Rowles, imagines a situation “whereby a public authority, whether local or national, takes a democratic decision on energy generation … that TTIP then makes easier for corporations to challenge.”
More opportunities to sue
The bone of contention here is the investor state dispute settlement (ISDS), which allows private companies to sue governments for loss of profits connected to regulation. It is seen as a key US demand for the trade partnership. Precedents include a US tobacco firm suing the Australian government over packaging restrictions and a US fracking company suing the Québec government following a moratorium on drilling under the St Lawrence River.
“Where the US wants to engage it does so pretty forcefully”, says David Baldock, executive director of the Institute for European Environmental Policy. He questions why an ISDS provision is needed at all, given the robust nature of the courts in both jurisdictions and the “huge levels of trade already between the EU and the US”. Yet an ISDS independent tribunal which would bypass national courts (and “doesn’t sit at all comfortably with the European decision-making process”, says Baldock) appears to be strongly favoured by US negotiators.
Race to the bottom on regulation Baldock also argues, “If you add TTIP to the language coming out of the commission about being less regulatory, lighter governance, letting states off binding targets around renewables and energy efficiency, then it is another layer that feeds … angst and lack of confidence for investors.”
Chair of the UK environmental audit committee, Joan Walley, believes there is a danger of TTIP coming at “the expense of throwing away hard-won environmental and public-health protections” and that combining US and EU regulatory systems becomes a “race to the bottom” – agreeing to harmonise the lowest regulations on either side, not the highest.
Baldock believes there could also be “a chill effect”, meaning that any new, stricter regulation is less likely to pass in future. “If we’re going to have a low carbon world we’ve got to [set] more targets, more product standards, more eco design directives,” he says. “The question is how far those are going to be inhibited by TTIP and giving the Americans a seat at the table.”……..http://www.theguardian.com/public-leaders-network/2015/aug/05/ttip-free-trade-deal-renewable-energy-transatlantic-partnership-eu-us
Fukushima plume model shows 1 Million Bq/m2 over West Coast after reactor explosions — TV: Private emails reveal highest levels of gov’t worried about health impact in US — Nuclear industry tried to bury truth, while UC Berkeley experts told public “there is no plume” (VIDEO) http://enenews.com/fukushima-plume-model-shows-1-million-bqm2-west-coast-after-explosions-tv-emails-reveal-highest-levels-govt-worried-about-health-impact-radiation-exposure-uc-berkeley-experts-claimed-publicly-pl
The Big Picture, Jun 24, 2015 — Kevin Kamps, Beyond Nuclear (emphasis added): “A recent revelation of Nuclear Regulatory Commission internal emails… reveal that there was concern at the highest levels of the U.S. government, and rightly so, about the radioactive iodine-131escaping from Fukushima Dai-ichi… and reaching the United States… Rainwater at 242 times safe drinking water act permissible levels — so you better believe we got radioactive iodine-131 in the United States. Likely people ingested it — either breathed it in, or drank it in milk, or various other ingestion pathways. It attacks the thyroid gland… it does a tremendous amount of damage. And these emails… show that US government officials were worriedabout that, were calling for studies to be done to try to track the health damage. And what do you know, those studies did not happen… The monitoring and testing and the epidemiology were woefully inadequate to non-existent… The nuclear industry will try to bury the truth, and that sure happened after Fukushima… I think there’s been a huge dereliction of duty at the federal and the state levels.”
Kamps appears to be referencing an ENENews report from earlier this month, Censored US gov’t emails reveal proposed plan to test West Coast residents for Fukushima fallout — “Many cases of cancer may end up being attributed to exposures” — Doses could exceed emergency levels
The report quoted internal emails from March 2011 by the head of UC Berkeley’s nuclear engineering department, who wrote: “UCB faculty[is in] general agreement that prompt action should be taken… Many cases of thyroid cancer, and other health problems, may end up being attributed to exposures from the Fukushima accident… on the U.S. west coast… It is possible that we will find that some people have received doses of I-131 and other radionuclidesthat could exceed the levels [which]Protective Action Guidelines are designed to prevent. It could identify individuals who have had significant exposure… alert them and their medical care professionals to monitor for potential health effects.”
On the Friday before UC Berkeley’s nuclear chair sent this proposal to a small group of government officials and experts, ABC’s San Francisco affiliate reported on public comments made by UC Berkeley’s nuclear department:
ABC (San Francisco KGO-TV), Mar 18, 2011: Nuclear engineers here at UC Berkeley say… don’t be alarmed. The tiny particles are just so small, they pose no threat at all… not harmful at all. One scientist here says you can get more radiation exposure on a flight… One model forecasts that the radiation plume… will reach California today… experts say this map is very misleading. First of all, there is no ‘plume’. Second of all, you cannot predict how the weather is going to carry radiation particles over here to the West Coast, if any at all.
The map above is a model developed by Japanese and European experts showing the strength and location of the Fukushima plume while over the West Coast on Mar. 18, 2011 — the same day as the broadcast of UC Berkeley’s claim that “there is no plume”. According to the map’s scale, dark red areas along the West Coast indicate the Fukushima fission product xenon-133 had a concentration in the air column of 1,000,000 becquerels per square meter.
Israel to Resume Assassinations of Iranian Nuclear Scientists?
In interview with Germany’s Der Spiegel, Israeli defense minister hints Israel could target Iranian scientists to halt nuclear program. Israel to Resume Assassinations of Iranian Nuclear Scientists?, Arutz Sheva, 7 Aug 15
In interview with Germany’s Der Spiegel, Israeli defense minister hints Israel could target Iranian scientists to halt nuclear program. Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon has hinted Israel could resume assassinating Iranian nuclear scientists…….
Comparing the Iran deal to attempts by western Allies to appease Nazi Germany prior to World War Two, Ya’alon said historians would view the agreement as a “historic mistake” and a mere attempt to “kick the can down the road.”
And in what appeared to be a subtle threat, Ya’alon added thatIsrael “bore no responsibility for the lives of Iranian nuclear scientists,” in what appeared to be a subtle threat.
Israel is believed to be behind a series of assassinations of at least 5 top Iranian scientists involved in Iran’s covert nuclear weapons program, though it has never commented on the allegations. Most of the scientists were reportedly killed by unknown assassins placing “sticky bombs” on their cars, sometimes in audacious daylight operations.
But those assassinations – along with other covert operations including cyber attacks against Iran – have petered out in recent years, with the last known attack occurring in 2013. The halt in assassinations is believed to be a result both of direct American pressure on Israel to stop them, as well as other western states’ pivot towards detente with Tehran and away cooperating with Israel on such operations.
Ya’alon also hinted Israel could also consider airstrikes against Iranian nuclear weapons facilities as a last resort.
Analysts have long debated the viability of a unilateral Israeli strike, with many assuming such a strike to be impossible without US cooperation.
The interview follows reports that Iran is already busily “sanitizing” its Parchin military complex to hide evidence of nuclear weaponsdevelopment from nuclear inspections. http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/199178#.VcUevnGqpHw
Fukushima; Reactors And/Or SFP’s In #5 And #6 Melted Down – Total of 7 Melt Down’s, Melt Outs, Nuclear Explosions A Green Road Blogspot,
NORMALCY BIAS AND DENIAL THE NEW NORM
HOW THE NUCLEAR INDUSTRY DECEIVES THE PUBLIC
Art And Science Of Deception; Global Corporations And The 1%
TEPCO COVERED UP AND LIED ABOUT MULTIPLE NUCLEAR REACTOR AND SPENT FUEL POOL MELTDOWNS
IT TOOK TEPCO THREE MONTHS TO ADMIT 3 MELTDOWNS, BUT THEY KNEW IT IN 2 HOURS
TEPCO did not hand out KI tablets and lied about the severity of the accident, right from the beginning all the way through to present day, with no exceptions. In doing this TEPCO had the support of the complicit medical community, the nuclear regulators and the Japanese government. Almost no one one called them on this initial deception and coverup that had severe health consequences. There were a few brave individuals that stood up to this Matrix like nuclear machine, such as Dr. Busby, Arnie Gunderson, and Dr. Helen Caldicott MD, among others.. These few truth tellers, (among others like Enenews.com) deserve your support and encouragement, by the way.
TEPCO LIED ABOUT AND COVERED UP DANGER OF RADIATION TO PEOPLE, WARNED NO ONE AND GAVE OUT NO MEANINGFUL INFORMATION
Diabetes Caused By Low Level Radiation – 6 In 10 Fukushima Children With Diabetes; via @AGreenRoad
CORPORATE OWNED MASS MEDIA COMPLICIT IN COVER UP AROUND FUKUSHIMA, TMI AND CHERNOBYL
Right after the Fukushima mega disaster happened, the Fox News network even went so far as to feature Anne Colter, who said all radiation is good for you, and the more, the better. She was promoting the discredited hormesis theory, as all pro nuclear apologists do. The mass media went along with the PR spin handed out by the nuclear industry and reported that all radiation is harmless, and it will cause no damage to anyone, which is the exact opposite of the truth. When deception becomes the truth, and the truth becomes a lie, democracy and freedom is lost.
The mass media is a very effective propaganda outlet and PR spin machine for huge corporations.
- 1 NUCLEAR ISSUES
- business and costs
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- marketing of nuclear
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- secrets,lies and civil liberties
- weapons and war
- 2 WORLD
- MIDDLE EAST
- NORTH AMERICA
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- Christina's notes
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- RARE EARTHS
- resources – print
- Resources -audiovicual