A crisis has hit the nuclear industry. It’s nuclear wastes. In true Public Relations style – a crisis calls for CRISIS MANAGEMENT. The PR people have risen to this emergency.
Almost overnight, the nuclear spin doctors have done a complete u turn about nuclear wastes. Their former technique was to ignore, avoid, diminish the subject. Nuclear wastes were the “elephant in the room” – not to be considered, in discussions on nuclear power.
But then – Fukushima happened. And worse, in USA, a federal appeals court ruled in June 2012 that the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) could no longer say it had reasonable assurance that a long-term waste-management solution would be created. The NRC will not approve any new nuclear reactors until there is a solution.
No problem to the PR Crisis Management people.. What you do is – you bring the problem out of the dark – you shine the spotlight on the problem – nuclear wastes, and with the aid of disinformation and lies, you turn what was hugely expensive and nasty – plutonium – into something that will be a money-making boon for mankind.
Here’s the big lie: – Plutonium will be a lucrative fuel for new Generation IV nuclear reactors, and they won’t leave toxic waste, (well only some toxic wastes) It will fuel spacecraft to go to Mars,( and they probably won’t crash.)
With a global campaign of lies. this message should remove the “irrational fears” about plutonium, and give new life to the dying nuclear industry. Unless, of course, the global public become aware of this massive deception.
Lies and violence were the origin of nuclear power. First of all, in 1942, the work of Dr Charles Pecher, who sought to relieve cancer pain, using radiation -was taken over by the Manhattan Project. The plan now was to devise a radiological weapon that would kill people, but leave property intact. This plan was then changed, in favour of the more dramatic atomic explosions – which were hastily used in Hiroshima and Nagasaki just in time, as the war was ending, with Japan ready to surrender.
The nuclear scientists, for various motives, (in some cases, guilt) now decided to produce the “peaceful atom”. USA helped 127 Nazi rocket scientists, led by Wernher Von Braun, to move to America, to develop nuclear energy, which would be “too cheap to meter”.
Nuclear energy wasn’t really cheap at all, and required huge government subsidy, and a law to make sure that the tax-payer would pay up for any serious accident, (the Price Anderson Act). USA firms helped other governments to get this “peaceful energy” – and soon all of these countries had nuclear weapons. That was the main reason they wanted it.
The lies, the cover-ups, the expense, the escalating weaponry, continue to this day. Now the nuclear lobby is engaged in a lying campaign that depicts renewable energy as “not feasible”, and depicts ionising radiation as “good for you’ at low doses. It dismisses the radioactive waste problem – ” a solution will be found” (USA’s Waste Confidence Rule). In UK the latest lie is that super nuclear reactors are ready – to “eat up” the radioactive waste.
The start was America’s Manhattan project – developing the atomic bomb. Then came the horror of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Then came – the shock and guilt, and the attempt to turn the nuclear project into something good – “atoms for peace’ “electricity too cheap to meter”.
Of course the costing for “cheap” nuclear energy did not include the health and environmental toll of uranium mining, which, as always, was to be paid by indigenous people. Costing also did not include the virtually eternal toll of the cleaup of radioactive trash. And of course, there would be no accidents, (no Chalk River, Rocky Flats, Windscale, Mayak, Lenin icebreaker, Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, Tomsk, Hanford, Fukushima Daiichi)
Meanwhile, the military-industrial complex continued its production of nuclear weapons. Other countries adopted the “peaceful nuke”, so that they could develop nuclear weapons. The nuclear arms race was underway.
FROM THE ARCHIVES For this month, each week we’ll be posting an item from the past. Lest we forget.
The press release was drafted ahead of Operation Buffalo at Maralinga, during which troops were ordered to crawl through areas hit by fallout. It was not meant to be made public
Top secret document reveals British troops were knowingly exposed to radiation during nuclear fallout tests – mirror.co.uk, by Susie Boniface, 2 Jan 2011, British troops WERE knowingly exposed to radiation during nuclear fallout tests, a top-secret document has finally proved. Continue reading
The sinister side of the push for “New Nuclear” is that it is a justification for doing nothing about the accumulating toxic wastes and the toxic nuclear weapons and reactors. Such a comfortable temptation – leave this nastiness for our grand and great granchildren to fix.
The present entire reptilean assembly of nuclear industry chiefs and wannabe chiefs, and executives and lobbyists, and the bought politicians and media, will be dead then, having enjoyed their comfortable well-paid lives.
It is up to the ‘alternative’ and ‘social’ media to expose their lies and to highlight the compelling three present day challenges:
– to close down the global nuclear industry, and especially to expose and prevent the ‘New ‘Nuclear’ deception.
– to deal with the existing masses of radioactive trash – interim above ground storage, then burial near to the site of production – the ‘least worst’ option.
-to dismantle the useless nuclear weapons empire, including the poisonous depleted uranium weapons. (Today’s enemies effectively use much simpler and cheaper weapons)
We must believe that it is not too late, because we cannot afford to give up. It may be that the world now must adapt to the climate changes of this heating planet. At the same time, we have to address the continuing causes of climate change.
Overpopulation is an underlying cause. But as standards of living, rise, with education of women rising, populations do in fact reduce their birth rates, and this has happened in the developed world.
The culture of endless consumption must change. This is one area where the nuclear industry is insidiously dangerous. As they showed in their slick advertising film “Pandora’s Promise”, nuclear energy is all about endless electricity for endless over-consumption.
When it comes to adaptation, this means that we are now, more than ever, one world. National borders have already become meaningless, as pollution, and dangers such as nuclear radiation spread around the planet. With climate change,we are already seeing climate refugees, and that can only increase, as parts of the world become uninhabitable.
We surely need the ethical messages, to transcend the prevailing philosophy of money as the one goal in life. Many indigenous peoples understand this. Pope Francis gets it. But these people can’t do it on their own.
Christmas is nothing but a silly tasteless charade, unless it means a change in attitude towards our mindless consumption, and towards compassion and help for refugees. Friends of the Earth said it. long ago, with their slogan – Think Globally, Act Locally.
March on Paris The Don’t Nuke the Climate campaign will be present in Paris to organise and coordinate actions, gatherings and lobby efforts. On December 12 we organise a strong and visible anti-nuclear contingent in the Global Climate March. We call upon everyone to come to Paris for December 12 to make your point clear.
- 28 & 29 Nov, 2015: Mass demonstrations in European Capitals.
- 30 Nov – 11 Dec, 2015: The 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC – Paris, France.
- 12 Dec 2015: Mass demonstration in Paris.
Like the tobacco and asbestos industries before them, the nuclear lobby will ruthlessly promote any lie to keep their industry going.
Of course it’s all about getting tax-payer money. How? By promoting the lie that nuclear energy is a solution to climate change, so should get financial incentives from government.
Explode that lie, because:
- The entire nuclear fuel chain releases greenhouse gases.
- The nuclear fuel chain is in itself a grave danger because weather extremes with climate change could cause nuclear disasters.
Even if nuclear power were clean and greenhouse gas free, (which it’s not) it would not be ready in time to have any real effect on climate. It would require the very quick build of some 2000 large reactors – or of millions of the much touted Small Modular Nuclear Reactors.
On this, the hypocrisy of nuclear front groups is breath-taking. The Breakthrough Institute and UK’s Alvin Weinberg Foundation know perfectly well that their touted nuclear power is no solution to global warming.
As the world prepares for the Paris Climate Talks, th nuclear lobby aims to get its status approved there as clean, green and the solution to climate change.
In September we pointed out that new nuclear reactors do NOT solve the radioactive trash problem, despite the nuclear lobby’s pretense on this.
In October we point out that the nuclear lobby is intensifying its lies about ionising radiation, with the cruel lie that it is harmless, even beneficial. The nuclear liars claim that radioactive isotopes like Cesium 137 and Strontium 90 are the same as the harmless Potassium 40 in bananas. They espouse the quack science of “radiation homesis” – i.e. a little more ionising radiation is good for you.
Ionising radiation is the most proven cause of cancer. The nuclear industry from uranium mining through nuclear power, nuclear weapons, nuclear waste, is the planet’s recent new source of ionising radiation. Even medical radiation has its cancer risk. Radioactive minerals left in the ground are a minor source.
Denial of the health effects of ionising radiation is the latest and the most sinister, of the lies against science. That lie is now being used as part of the campaign to get nuclear recognised at the UN December Paris Climate Conference as a “clean” technology – worthy of tax-payer funded incentives.
Denial of science is not new – goes back to Flat Earth and beyond. It does have to do with complex psychological issues. These include resentment and jealousy of the respected position of scientists, fear of change, and a kind of helplessness in the face of challenging circumstances.
There are other motivations – such as the desire to be famous and important – as being someone “brave enough to oppose the mainstream”
Then there’s the “libertarian idea” – so strongly believed by Rupert Murdoch, that government must not interfere with personal freedom. This idea would include – the freedom to promote smoking to young people, to get a job as an asbestos miner, to refuse to vaccinate children against fatal diseases, to accept that low level irradiation of one’s children is OK.
But none of these motivations would get “air play”, would prevail, if it were not for the Money Motive – the good old “What’s In It For Whom?” That’s the impetus behind public relations people, “consultants” , journalists, commentators, TV producers, film-makers etc who are paid by think tanks that are fronts for polluting industries, and for corporate giants like the Koch brothers. And – don’t let’s forget, – the scientists and science media who are paid by governments that are trapped – financially beholden to polluting corporations, and to the military industrial complex
So -new nuclear reactors leave a smaller amount of radioactive trash. But it’s so highly toxic that it requires the same volume of space for its final disposal. The reactors themselves become radioactive trash eventually.
Thorium nuclear reactors produce these radioactive wastes:
- Technetium-99 has a half life of 220,000 years
- uranium-232 produces thallium-208 (a nasty wee gamma emitter)
- Selenium-79 (another gamma emitter with a 327,000 year half-life),
- even Thorium-232 is a problem with its half life of 14 Billion years (and while the T-232 isn’t a major worry, all the time during this 14 Billion years it will be decaying and producing stuff that is!)
Mixed-oxide (MOX) nuclear fuel reprocessing turns out to be twice as expensive as burial of nuclear wastes. according to an unreleased US Department of Energy report – and the World Nuclear Association knows this!
But – let’s pretend that nuclear reactors really could reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
TIME: To do that, 1500 one thousand megawatt-electric new reactors would be needed within a few yeas to displace a significant amount of carbon-emitting fossil generation
A Massachusetts Institute of Technology Study on “The Future of Nuclear Power” projected that a global growth scenario for as many as 1500 one thousand megawatt-electric new reactors would be needed to displace a significant amount of carbon-emitting fossil generation. Average 115 built per year would reduce our CO2 use by only 16%.
When we talk about Small Modular Nuclear Reactors – that 1500 reactors needed translates to millions, (and these SMRs are already shown to be more costly than large ones,)
COSTS: historically and now, the costs of the nuclear industry are staggering. Cost estimates have increased in the past decade from $1,000 to $7,000 per kW installed. And that’s before additional costs – e.g new safety measures, decommissioning are added. U.S. Vogtle project originally budgeted at $660 million, by 2013 cost $9 billion. Rating agencies consider nuclear investment risky and the abandoning of nuclear projects explicitly “credit positive”.
Meanwhile – if the nuclear “climate cure” were to be pursued, the enormous costs and efforts involved would take away from the clean, fast, and ever cheaper solutions of energy efficiency and renewable energy.
Over the next 3 months, the nuclear lobby’s focus will be on 3 major lies – 1. the lie about Gen IV reactors, esp thorium and Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) solving nuclear wastes, 2. the lie about “harmless” low dose ionising radiation, 3. the lie about nuclear solving climate change.
The nuclear lobby’s goal is to resuscitate their dying industry – to create a new nuclear renaissance.
For September, we focus on Nuclear Lie No. 1 – “New Gen IV reactors, esp thorium and Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) WILL SOLVE THE NUCLEAR WASTE PROBLEM.”
That lie is terribly important, because new nuclear power cannot go ahead until they have convinced the world that radioactive trash is a”resource” not the garbage that it really is.
“Generation IV” nuclear reactors do not exist. The dream of Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactors remains a mirage. The Small Modular Nuclear Reactor has been shown to be uneconomic (has to be ordered en masse , has to be funded by tax-parers), vulnerable to terrorism, and wouldn’t be ready for decades. All of them still leave toxic wastes – smaller amounts, but so toxic and long-lasting that they require the same volume of deep burial space as the wastes that they purport to remove.
That hasn’t stopped the nuclear enthusiasts from conning governments for funding, and in the UK, even getting themselves classed as a charity!!
I would like to say that in 2014 progress has really been made – world-wide. But I’m not sure that this is true.
One area of progress is, without doubt, the rapid growth of renewable energy, both in large scale projects, and in small-scale diversified solar and wind energy. China is leading the way in renewable energy, but there are remarkable achievements in Europe, especially Germany, and also in some States of USA.
Another area – hard to pin down – a degree of public awakening to climate and nuclear issues – as exemplified in the global response to the People’s Climate Marches on September 21st.
Below. I found this inspirational photograph by Robert Rodriguez Jr http://robertrodriguezjr.com/2014/08/19/storm-king-mountain-environmental-movement/#comment-20272
Will that public awakening translate to action, in time? Even big businesses, corporations are now pledging support for climate action. Yet then immoral nuclear lobby now jumps on that bandwagon, with its massive ability to buy politicians.
When it comes to the nuclear horror, very little progress in the weapons area – it seems that the boys just can’t stop “improving” their nuclear weapons toys.
It’s a bit better concerning commercial nuclear power – the realities of its stupendous costs are now biting.
Wikipedia gives some encouraging facts concerning nuclear power in 2014:
” As of 2014, countries such as Australia, Austria, Denmark,Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, Israel, Malaysia, New Zealand, and Norway have no nuclear power stations and some remain opposed to nuclear power. Germany and Switzerland are phasing-out nuclear power. Globally, more nuclear power reactors have closed than opened in recent years.…..
In March 2014, around 130,000 Taiwanese marched for an anti-nuclear protest around Taiwan. They demanded that the government remove nuclear power plants in Taiwan. The march came ahead of the 3rd anniversary of Fukushima disaster. Around 50,000 people marched in Taipei while another three separate events were held around other Taiwanese cities attended by around 30,000 people. Among the participants are the organizations from Green Citizen Action’s Alliance, Homemakers United Foundation, Taiwan Association for Human Rights and Taiwan Environmental Protection Union.Facing on-going opposition and a host of delays, construction of the Lungmen Nuclear Power Plant was halted in April 2014.”[
Record summer heat is bringing fire danger to nuclear stations in the Northern Hemisphere. That’s bad enough, and already is placing pressure on precious water supplies, as near Chernobyl, and in California, fire-fighting goes on.
Shortage of water means that uranium and nuclear facilities are taking much needed water away from agriculture and town supplies. In South Australia, BHP’s massive Olympic Dam uranium mine is the biggest water guzzler in the State.
Extremely hot weather means that rivers and marine areas risk heat pollution from nuclear cooling water. When this happens, nuclear reactors must close down.
China, for example, with its plan for inland nuclear reactors, is faced with this problem.
But China also shares with other nuclear countries,the climate change problem of its many reactors located on the coast. That’s the threatening problem of rising sea levels, storm surges, typhoons, even tsunamis.
Nuclear power and sea level rise – All reactors on sea coasts endangered by sea level rise Over the next hundred years there will be significant sea rises, one meter or more, and many closed nuclear reactor sites could be flooded, including the stored nuclear waste. That could contaminate much of the coast lines for decades.
Nuclear power and water shortage – Climate Change is already bringing droughts and changed rainfall patterns. Even if the vloume of rain might be the same, or greater, with the warming planet – it’s not much help if it falls in the oceans, or if it falls intermittently – in flooding torrents.
As water becomes scarcer, and more expensive, nuclear power becomes a very uneconomic way to use it.
As temperatures rise, nuclear reactors will more and more often be forced to shut down – adding to the already well known diseconomics of nuclear power
- 1 NUCLEAR ISSUES
- business and costs
- climate change
- indigenous issues
- marketing of nuclear
- opposition to nuclear
- politics international
- Religion and ethics
- secrets,lies and civil liberties
- weapons and war
- 2 WORLD
- MIDDLE EAST
- NORTH AMERICA
- SOUTH AMERICA
- Christina's notes
- Christina's themes
- RARE EARTHS
- resources – print
- Resources -audiovicual
- World Nuclear