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Sleepwalking towards nuclear war – enthusiasm for nuclear rockets and submarines – theme for May21

Small nuclear reactors (SMRs) are being pitched as ”climate salvation”, ”cheap electricity” etc. Of course this is nonsense. But the toxic macho nuclear zealots are confident that SMRs will have a great future in nuclear wars on land, on sea, in space.

SPACE: . Breathless enthusiasm in media coverage of rockets, space exploration . Yet the truth is that space research is tied to the goal of militarising space.

Of course, it is all the better to have the tax-payer fund space research – while quietly forwarding the drive for war inspace.

SUBMARINES. Nuclear zealots have long been working away for nuclear submarines. Aljazeera outlined current developments : Military forces around the world are reinventing the submarine for future conflicts. Attack subs also prowl the oceans. Fast and sleek, they are designed to sink other subs, especially high-value enemy missile submarines. This endless, deadly game of cat and mouse is played out daily under the surface of the world’s oceans as each side hones the skills needed to destroy the other in the event of war.

Submarines have unique features that make them deadly, the chief one being their stealth. Able to travel undetected underwater, they can strike without warning, the most powerful among them containing missile arsenals that could single-handedly destroy a continent.

A new class of Russian submarine, the Khabarovsk, will be fitted to carry the giant superfast autonomous nuclear torpedo, Poseidon, in effect an underwater nuclear-powered drone, capable of speeds of up to 180km/h (112mph) and armed with a huge, multi-megaton nuclear warhead.

Russia is not the only country upgrading its submarines. France, the UK and the US are all developing and building the next class of missile and attack sub.

With enhanced weapons like hypersonic missiles being developed, submarines are growing deadlier with each new generation. 

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Christina's themes, weapons and war | Leave a comment

UK energy policy is still weighed down by the nuclear dream

This post is by Jonathon Porritt, founder director of Forum for the Future. In March 2012, four former directors of Friends of the Earth (myself, Tom Burke, Charles Secrett and Tony Juniper) wrote to Prime Minister David Cameron to warn him that the pro-nuclear bias of his advisers across government posed a significant risk to the government’s ability to fashion a coherent energy policy………….

UK energy policy is still weighed down by the nuclear dream — Inside track

It’s depressing how much of the counter-briefing that we provided him with at that time would be as relevant for Boris Johnson today as it was, nine years ago, for David Cameron. That pro-nuclear bias ………

Using nuclear power still doesn’t make sense
It was this hopelessly inadequate articulation of future energy policy that persuaded me to revisit the case for nuclear power, to see if it makes any more sense now than it did back in March 2012. It doesn’t.

Indeed, many of the inherent problems about nuclear power (getting more and more expensive every year, ever greater construction delays, still no answers on nuclear waste, security problems, both physical and cyber, proliferation risks and so on) are more pronounced now than they’ve ever been.

This pro-nuclear bias is not just an historical aberration; it is arguably the principal reason why we haven’t a hope in hell of achieving the government’s new target of a 78 per cent reduction in emissions of greenhouse gases by 2035. The opportunity costs of keeping these nuclear dreams alive intensify every year, distracting us so damagingly from what we know we have to do: double down on renewables, bring energy efficiency right up the agenda of every sector of the economy, invest in storage and smart grid technologies, get serious about the 2030 target for banning the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles, and crack the heat conundrum by building the kind of supply chain that will ensure the installation not just of 600,000 heat pumps every year (the government’s target) but millions.

It’s all there: we can do this. But not if we’re still weighed down by today’s moribund nuclear industry.  https://greenallianceblog.org.uk/2021/05/07/uk-energy-policy-is-still-weighed-down-by-the-nuclear-dream/

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Bribing a declining rural community – into taking in nuclear waste

Goodwill’ money from proposed nuclear waste site pours into declining Ontario farm town. What if it stops? 
Colin Butler · CBC News ·May 07, 2021 A citizens’ group is accusing Canada’s nuclear industry of using its financial might to groom a declining Ontario farm community into becoming a willing host for the country’s most dangerous radioactive waste. 

In a pamphlet about the proposed disposal site that was published last year, the Ontario municipality of South Bruce —which encompasses the farming communities of Teeswater, Mildmay, Formosa and Salem — says it’s “on the decline.” 

The pamphlet tells of a shrinking population, where rural towns and village “downtowns are fading from what they used to be,” with vacant store windows, big infrastructure bills and few prospects for new economic growth. 

Protecting Our Waterways – No Nuclear Waste, a grassroots citizens’ group, accuses the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) of taking advantage of the decline by spending millions of dollars on “goodwill” projects the community couldn’t afford on its own. 

Bill Noll, a resident of Teeswater and the vice-president of Protecting Our Waterways, said the money has done a lot of good — it’s helped find small-town doctors, boosted senior care, upgraded wells, and even bought local firefighters lifesaving new safety equipment.

Money ‘divorced’ from project, group says

“Its strictly a goodwill gesture,” said Noll. “That money is not tied to anything to do with the project. It is completely divorced. Why would you spend one and a half million dollars on a community if you didn’t expect something back in return?”

The project Noll is referring to is a $23-billion nuclear disposal site where the NWMO wants to inter some three million spent nuclear fuel bundles in a sprawling network of tunnels and holes 500 metres below the ground.

South Bruce is one of two Ontario communities — the other is Ignace, about 2½ hours northwest of Thunder Bay — under consideration for what the NWMO is calling the “deep geological repository.” The NWMO says it’s working with local communities in selecting the site in 2023.

In the case of South Bruce, test drilling recently began north of the dairy town of Teeswater to see if the ancient bedrock is viable enough. But funds from the NWMO have been flowing in since 2012, when the local council volunteered to be considered as a host. 

According to a March 2021 report from South Bruce Treasurer Kendra Reinhart, the community has received more than $3.2 million from the NWMO since 2012. It’s been used to pay for everything from St John Ambulance training, to offsetting extra costs of the pandemic, to the salaries of municipal employees. 

The report didn’t include all the money, and noted several sources of NWMO funding were omitted. For instance, left out were requests for additional support, such as the $1.5 million the municipality is seeking from a $4-million NWMO-sponsored investment fund to help offset the cost of expanding a local sewage treatment plant. 

Michelle Stein, another Teeswater resident and president of Protect Our Waterways, said the money has become so ubiquitous that on March 23, the same day the treasury report was presented to South Bruce council, NWMO appeared on the council agenda 121 times. 

Mayor says community ‘foolish not to’ take money…

“Our community has really started to rely on the money from the NWMO,” said Stein.Stein and Noll said the more the municipality of South Bruce becomes intertwined financially with the NWMO, the harder it will be for the community to disentangle itself by saying no to the nuclear disposal site, lest it cut off the community’s newfound source of wealth……..

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Canada, secrets,lies and civil liberties, wastes | Leave a comment

Amidst Pandemic and Economic Sufferings, 2020’S Global Military Spending Reached Highest Level in Decades.

Amidst Pandemic and Economic Sufferings, 2020’S Global Military Spending Reached Highest Level in Decades

World military expenditure in 2020 is estimated to have been $1981 billion, the highest level since 1988 — and world military expenditure in 2020 was 2.6 per cent higher in real terms than in 2019 and 9.3 per cent higher than in 2011.

Portside, May 6, 2021 Countercurrents Collective    Military spending around the world has increased to unprecedented level since 1988 despite economic suffering due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the U.S. was ahead of all the countries again, finds Trends in World Military Expenditure, 2020, the latest report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

In 2020, nations were struggling to support their economies through the times of hardships and lockdowns caused by the pandemic. Those efforts apparently did not prevent governments from spending more money on their militaries than ever before in more than three decades, the report said.

The report published on Monday said: World military expenditure in 2020 is estimated to have been $1981 billion, the highest level since 1988 — the earliest year for which SIPRI has a consistent estimate for total global military spending, and world military expenditure in 2020 was 2.6 per cent higher in real terms than in 2019 and 9.3 per cent higher than in 2011.

It said that over the last decade, global military spending increased by almost 10 percent. The increase came in a year when the world’s “gross domestic product (GDP) shrank by 4.4 percent.” The global military burden — world military expenditure as a share of global GDP — rose by 0.2 percentage points in 2020, to 2.4 per cent.

It said the increase caused “the biggest year-on-year rise in the military burden since the global financial and economic crisis in 2009.”

Still, some countries, like South Korea and Chile, preferred to spend some of the planned military funds on pandemic response while others, like Russia and Brazil, spent “considerably less” on defense then planned in 2020.

SPIRI said U.S. leads the list of the largest military spenders by a wide margin. U.S.’s military expenditures amounted to 39% of the global defense spending. U.S. also recorded one of the highest spending growth rates among the top 10 military spenders, surpassed only by Germany and South Korea, which have considerably smaller defense budgets.

China, closest “competitor” of U.S., spent around three times less money on defense and its military spending in 2020 accounted for some 13 percent of the global tally. Beijing did not have to raise its defense spending at the expense of increasing the military burden, since its economy was one of the few still growing in 2020.

SPIRI said U.S. leads the list of the largest military spenders by a wide margin. U.S.’s military expenditures amounted to 39% of the global defense spending. U.S. also recorded one of the highest spending growth rates among the top 10 military spenders, surpassed only by Germany and South Korea, which have considerably smaller defense budgets.

China, closest “competitor” of U.S., spent around three times less money on defense and its military spending in 2020 accounted for some 13 percent of the global tally. Beijing did not have to raise its defense spending at the expense of increasing the military burden, since its economy was one of the few still growing in 2020…………… SPIRI said U.S. leads the list of the largest military spenders by a wide margin. U.S.’s military expenditures amounted to 39% of the global defense spending. U.S. also recorded one of the highest spending growth rates among the top 10 military spenders, surpassed only by Germany and South Korea, which have considerably smaller defense budgets.

China, closest “competitor” of U.S., spent around three times less money on defense and its military spending in 2020 accounted for some 13 percent of the global tally. Beijing did not have to raise its defense spending at the expense of increasing the military burden, since its economy was one of the few still growing in 2020………….. https://portside.org/2021-05-06/amidst-pandemic-and-economic-sufferings-2020s-global-military-spending-reached-highest

May 8, 2021 Posted by | 2 WORLD, weapons and war | Leave a comment

The Fateful Choice: Nuclear Arms Race or Nuclear Weapons-Free World 


The Fateful Choice: Nuclear Arms Race or Nuclear Weapons-Free World https://historynewsnetwork.org/article/179977 by Lawrence Wittner, 4/25/2021

Dr. Lawrence Wittner (https://www.lawrenceswittner.com/ ) is Professor of History Emeritus at SUNY/Albany and the author of Confronting the Bomb (Stanford University Press).

The recent announcement by the British government that it plans a 40 percent increase in the number of nuclear weapons it possesses highlights the escalation of the exceptionally dangerous and costly nuclear arms race.

After decades of progress in reducing nuclear arsenals through arms control and disarmament agreements, all the nuclear powers are once again busily upgrading their nuclear weapons capabilities.  For several years, the U.S. government has been engaged in a massive nuclear “modernization” program, designed to refurbish its production facilities, enhance existing weapons, and build new ones.  The Russian government, too, is investing heavily in beefing up its nuclear forces, and in July 2020, President Vladimir Putin announced that the Russian navy would soon be armed with hypersonic nuclear weapons and underwater nuclear drones. Meanwhile, ChinaIndia, Pakistan, and North Korea are expanding the size of their nuclear arsenals, while Israel is building a new, secret nuclear weapons facility and France is modernizing its ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and missile-carrying submarines.

This nuclear buildup coincides with the scrapping of key nuclear arms control and disarmament agreements, including the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, the Iran nuclear agreement, and the Open Skies Treaty.

Like arms races of the past, the reviving nuclear arms race places the world in immense danger, for when nations engage in military conflict, they are inclined to use the most powerful weapons they have available.  How long will it be before a nuclear-armed, aggressive government—or merely one threatened with military defeat or humiliation—resorts to nuclear war?

In addition to creating an enormous danger, a nuclear arms race also comes with a huge financial price—in this case, in the trillions of dollars.  Military analysts have estimated that the U.S. government’s nuclear “modernization” program alone will cost about $1.5 trillion

Of course, the nuclear arms control and disarmament process is not dead—at least not yet.  One of U.S. President Joseph Biden’s first actions after taking office was to offer to extend the U.S.-Russia New Start Treaty, which significantly limits the number of U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear weapons.  And the Russian government quickly accepted.  In addition, efforts are underway to restore the Iran nuclear agreement.  Most dramatically, the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which was adopted by 122 nations in 2017, secured sufficient ratifications to become international law in January 2021.  The provisions of this landmark agreement, if adhered to, would create a nuclear weapons-free world.

Even so, when it comes to freeing the world from the danger of nuclear destruction, the situation is not promising.  None of the nuclear powers has signed the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.  And without their participation, a nuclear-free world will remain an aspiration rather than a reality.  In fact, the most powerful nuclear nations remain in a state of high tension with one another, which only enhances the possibility of nuclear war.  Assessing the situation at the beginning of 2020 and 2021, a panel appointed by the editors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists placed the hands of their famous “Doomsday Clock” at 100 seconds to midnight, the most dangerous setting in its history.

As a result, a fateful choice lies before the nuclear powers.  They can plunge ahead with their nuclear arms race and face the terrible consequences.  Or they can take the path of sanity in the nuclear age and join other nations in building a nuclear weapons-free world.

May 8, 2021 Posted by | 2 WORLD, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Radioactive water release – Fukushima nuclear disaster continues to haunt the world

Radioactive water: Japan’s Fukushima nuclear disaster haunts the world a decade later,  Geo News, 7 May 21, ”…. In a recent development, Japan decided to dump radioactive water stored at the disaster-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the Pacific Ocean.


Scores of Pakistani fishermen recently protested this decision of Japan outside the Gawadar Press Club……….

Radioactive water could contaminate fish exports from Pacific ocean

Geo News got in touch with renowned Pakistani physicist Dr AH Nayyar to talk about Japan’s decision.

Dr Nayyar recalled the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster while discussing the Fukushima disaster.

“They could not stop Chernobyl and radioactive clouds once they hovered over Europe from Soviet Union. Radioactivity found its way inside human skin and the world paid the price,” he said, adding that as far as Fukushima is concerned, it will be a first experiment of its own kind.

Dr Nayyar pointed out releasing radioactive water into the ocean could mean that if radioactive elements sit in marine life, it will soar chances of it infiltrating into humans via catchments and exports. “When radioactive particles decay, they cause cancer in the human body,” he said.

“People were skeptical in buying fresh milk and powder imported from Europe post 1986 Chernobyl disaster. It could be the same with fish coming from the Pacific ocean. They will have to be carefully examined if they carry radioactive particles. However, waters from the Pacific Ocean will not intrude into the Arabian Sea,” Dr Nayyar concluded……….

Currently, it is stored in gigantic water tanks, but the plant’s operator, Tepco, appraised that these tanks are expected to fill up by 2022.

The water is contaminated as it comes in contact with fuel before leaking into damaged basements and tunnels, where it mixes with groundwater that flows through the site from hills above. The combination results in excess contaminated water that is pumped out and treated before being stored in huge tanks crowding the site. 

About 1.3 million tonnes of radioactive water – or enough to fill 500 Olympic-sized swimming pools – are currently stored in these tanks, In 2018, Tepco admitted it had not filtered all dangerous materials out of the water, despite saying for years they had been removed, according to a Reuters report.

Unacceptable and irresponsible, say China, South Korea to Japan

In a statement, China’s foreign ministry called the move “extremely irresponsible” and said it reserved the right to take further action.

South Korea’s government said the plan was “totally unacceptable” and that it would lodge a formal complaint with Japan.

Voices are rising within Japan as well. Greenpeace Japan said it “strongly condemned” the decision.

“The Japanese government has once again failed the people of Fukushima,” Kazue Suzuki, a climate change and energy campaigner at Greenpeace Japan, said in a statement. “The government has taken the wholly unjustified decision to deliberately contaminate the Pacific Ocean with radioactive wastes. Rather than using the best available technology to minimize radiation hazards by storing and processing the water over the longer term, they have opted for the cheapest option.” https://www.geo.tv/latest/349126-radioactive-water-japans-fukushima-nuclear-disaster-haunts-the-world-a-decade-later

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Japan, oceans | Leave a comment

Anti-Olympics campaign gains traction online in Japan

Story by Reuters , Fri May 7, 2021 A “No Olympics” banner is placed by protesters in Tokyo during a demonstration against the going ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games. (Reuters)An online petition calling for the Tokyo Olympics to be canceled has garnered almost 200,000 signatures in the past few days, as public […]

Anti-Olympics campaign gains traction online in Japan — limitless life

An online petition calling for the Tokyo Olympics to be canceled has garnered almost 200,000 signatures in the past few days, as public concerns mount over holding the Games in a pandemic.

With less than three months to go before the start of the summer Olympics, already postponed for a year due to the coronavirus, questions still remain over how Tokyo can hold the global event and keep volunteers, athletes, officials and the Japanese public safe from COVID-19.
In two days since its launch, an online campaign called “Stop Tokyo Olympics” has gathered more than 187,000 signatures, nearing its 200,000 goal and underscoring public concerns over holding the massive sporting event in Japan’s capital.

Battling a fourth wave of the pandemic and struggling with a sluggish vaccination campaign, the Japanese government is seeking to extend states of emergency in Tokyo and three other areas until the end of May, the economy minister said on Friday.Opinion polls in Japan have found a majority of the public is opposed to the Games, which are due to open on July 23.

“We strongly call for the prevention of spread of coronavirus and protection of lives and livelihood by using available resources to stop the Olympics,” Kenji Utsunomiya, the online petition organizer, wrote on his website. Utsunomiya is a lawyer who has run several times for Tokyo governor.
But, organizers have repeatedly said the Games will go ahead, unveiling detailed Covid-19 protocols for athletes and officials.Pfizer Inc (PFE.N) and its German partner BioNTech SE said on Thursday they had agreed to donate their vaccine to help inoculate those participating in the Games.

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Now is the opportunity for progressives in US Congress to force Biden to defund new nuclear weapons

Here’s How to Force Biden to Cut the Pentagon Budget

Get organized. Ask for meetings with your representatives or their foreign policy staffers. Be fierce; be relentless. Channel the grit of a Pentagon lobbyist.  Portside, May 5, 2021 Medea Benjamin and Marcy Winograd  ALTERNET

Imagine this scenario:

A month before the vote on the federal budget, progressives in Congress declared, “We’ve studied President Biden’s proposed $753 billion military budget, an increase of $13 billion from Trump’s already inflated budget, and we can’t, in good conscience, support this.”……..

Progressives uniting as a block to resist out-of-control military spending would be a no-nonsense exercise of raw power………  Without progressives on board, President Biden may not be able to secure enough votes to pass a federal budget that would then green light the reconciliation process needed for his broad domestic agenda.

For years, progressives in Congress have complained about the bloated military budget. . In 2020, 93 members in the House and 23 in the Senate voted to cut the Pentagon budget by 10% and invest those funds instead in critical human needs. A House Spending Reduction Caucus, co-chaired by Representatives Barbara Lee and Mark Pocan, emerged with 22 members on board.

Meet the members of the House Defense Spending Reduction Caucus:

Barbara Lee (CA-13); Mark Pocan (WI-2); Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12); Ilhan Omar (MN-5); Raùl Grijalva (AZ-3); Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11); Jan Schakowsky(IL-9); Pramila Jayapal (WA-7); Jared Huffman (CA-2); Alan Lowenthal (CA-47); James P. McGovern (MA-2); Peter Welch (VT-at large); Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14); Frank Pallone, Jr (NJ-6).; Rashida Tlaib (MI-13); Ro Khanna (CA-17); Lori Trahan (MA-3); Steve Cohen (TN-9); Ayanna Pressley (MA-7), Anna Eshoo (CA-18).

We also have the Progressive Caucus, the largest Caucus in Congress with almost 100 members in the House and Senate. Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal is all for cutting military spending. “We’re in the midst of a crisis that has left millions of families unable to afford food, rent, and bills. But at the same time, we’re dumping billions of dollars into a bloated Pentagon budget,” she said. “Don’t increase defense spending. Cut it—and invest that money into our communities.”

Now is the time for these congresspeople to turn their talk into action………..

The polls show most Democrats oppose “nuclear modernization”—a euphemism for a plan that is anything but modern given that 50 countries have signed on to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons making nuclear weapons illegal and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) requires the US pursue nuclear disarmament to avoid a catastrophic accident or intentional atomic holocaust.

Now is the time for progressive congressional luminaries such as the Squad’s AOC, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Ayanna Presley to unite with Congressional Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal, as well as Barbara Lee, Mark Pocan and others in the House Spending Reduction Caucus to put their feet down and stand as a block against a bloated military budget.

Will they have the courage to unite behind such a cause? Would they be willing to play hardball and gum up the works on the way to Biden’s progressive domestic agenda?

Odds improve if constituents barrage them with phone calls, emails, and visible protests. Tell them that in the time of a pandemic, it makes no sense to approve a military budget that is 90 times the budget of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Tell them that the billions saved from “right sizing” the Pentagon could provide critical funds for addressing the climate crisis. Tell them that just as we support putting an end to our endless wars, so, too, we support putting an end to our endless cycle of exponential military spending…………..

Get organized. Ask for meetings with your representatives or their foreign policy staffers. Be fierce; be relentless. Channel the grit of a Pentagon lobbyist.

This is the moment to demand a substantial cut in military spending that defunds new nuclear weapons.  https://portside.org/2021-05-05/heres-how-force-biden-cut-pentagon-budget

May 8, 2021 Posted by | politics, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Climatic and Humanitarian Impacts of Nuclear War. Alan Robock to talk for Friends of Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Nuclear war impacts topic of FORNL talk  https://oakridgetoday.com/2021/05/07/nuclear-war-impacts-topic-of-fornl-talk/ MAY 7, 2021, BY CAROLYN H KRAUSE,

The Climatic and Humanitarian Impacts of Nuclear War” is the topic of the monthly meeting of Friends of Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The virtual meeting, which is open to the public, will start at 12 noon on Tuesday, May 18. The Zoom link (meeting ID) can be found by clicking on the lecture title on the home page of the new FORNL website at www.fornl.org and then clicking the link just below the title on the talk’s descriptive page.

The speaker will be Alan Robock, a distinguished professor of climate science in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J. In describing the theory he will present, he said:

The world as we know it could end any day as a result of an accidental nuclear war between the United States and Russia. The fires produced by attacks on cities and industrial areas would generate smoke that would blow around the world, persist for years and block out sunlight, producing a nuclear winter.

“Because temperatures will plunge below freezing, crops would die and massive starvation could kill most of humanity. Even a nuclear war between new nuclear states, such as India and Pakistan, could produce climate change unprecedented in recorded human history and massive disruptions to the world’s food supply.”


In this talk Robock will show climate and crop model simulations, as well as analogs that support this theory. He will discuss policy changes that can immediately reduce the chance of the scenarios he will describe and that can lead to the abolition of nuclear weapons.


“The myth of nuclear deterrence has allowed nuclear weapons to persist for too long,” he said. Robock will be joined in his talk by a representative from the Physicists Coalition for Nuclear Threat Reduction.

As a result of international negotiations pushed by civil society led by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), which referenced Robock’s work, the United Nations passed the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons on July 7, 2017. On Dec. 10, 2017, ICAN accepted the Nobel Peace Prize “for its work to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and for its groundbreaking efforts to achieve a treaty-based prohibition of such weapons.”


The treaty went into effect on Jan. 22, 2021. Robock will discuss the prospects that humankind might successfully pressure the United States and the other eight nuclear nations to sign this treaty.


Robock has three degrees, including a Ph.D., in meteorology from the University of Wisconsin and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has published more than 400 articles on his research on climate change, including on climate intervention (also called geoengineering), impacts of volcanic eruptions on climate and climatic effects of nuclear war. He was a lead author of the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007.

May 8, 2021 Posted by | USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Talks ‘intensify’ on bringing US back to Iran nuclear deal

Talks ‘intensify’ on bringing US back to Iran nuclear deal

World powers have held a fourth round of high-level talks aimed at bringing the United States back into a landmark nuclear deal with Iran,abc news, DAVID RISING and PHILIPP JENNE , Associated Press, 8 May 21,

“The delegations seem to be ready to stay in Vienna as long as necessary to achieve the goal,” he wrote……..

U.S. President Joe Biden says he wants to rejoin the deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, but that Iran needs to return to compliance.

Speaking to reporters at the White House on Friday, Biden said he believed the Iranians were approaching the talks seriously…..

The pact is meant to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear bomb, something the country insists it does not want to do, and the government in Tehran has said it is prepared to reverse all of its violations but that Washington must remove all sanctions imposed under Trump.

Still unresolved is what Iran’s return to compliance would look like. Delegates to the Vienna talks concede, for example, that Iranian nuclear scientists cannot unlearn the knowledge they acquired in the last three years, but it is not clear whether Iran’s new centrifuges would need to be destroyed, mothballed and locked away, or simply taken offline.

Because the U.S. is currently out of the deal, there were no American representatives at the talks. Diplomats involved are shuttling between the Iranian side and a delegation from Washington elsewhere in Vienna.

Iran’s delegate to the talks, Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi, told Iranian state television after the meeting that his impression was that all sides were committed to finding a solution.

“The reports that are being conveyed to us from Americans is that they are also serious about returning to JCPOA. So far, they have announced that they are ready to lift most of their sanctions, but we do not think it is enough,” Araghchi said.

“That is why the negotiations will continue until we reach all our demands in this regard,” he added. “If our demands are met, Iran will be quite serious about returning to its obligations in the full implementation of JCPOA.”

Between the high-level meetings in Vienna of the so-called Joint Commission, expert groups have been meeting to try and come up with solutions to the outstanding issues.

Alain Matton, a spokesperson for the EU delegation, which is chairing the meetings, said the expert discussions will continue in the days ahead.

“And the EU as a coordinator and facilitator of the JCPOA talks will continue with separate talks with all participants and with the U.S.,” Matton told reporters. “The participants are continuing with discussions, which are held on various levels and which have as their objective the full and effective implementation of the deal by all sides and the U.S. return to the JCPOA.”……..   https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/high-level-talks-resume-returning-us-iran-nuclear-77550806

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Iran, politics international | Leave a comment

Russia to test powerful new nuclear weapon

RUSSIA ANNOUNCES PLANS TO TEST NUCLEAR WEAPON CALLED “SATAN II”AFTER YEARS OF DEVELOPMENT, RUSSIA IS READY TO LAUNCH THE POWERFUL NEW NUKES. Futurism,  by DAN ROBITZSKI  7 May 221, Son of Satan,

The Russian military is prepared to launch three tests of its powerful new nuclear weapon, the RS-28 Sarmat, which has earned the nickname “Satan II.”

Tests for the new intercontinental ballistic missile will begin within the next few months, military insiders told TASS, a news outlet owned by the Russian government that refers to the weapon as “invulnerable.” That’s alarming news — while the Sarmat has been under development for years, the fact that it’s now ready for test launches brings us into a dangerous new era of ultra-powerful nuclear weapons……….. https://futurism.com/the-byte/russia-test-nuclear-weapon-satan

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Russia, weapons and war | Leave a comment

U.S. Nuclear Weapons Upgrade Sees Delay on Leaky Silos, Old Tech

U.S. Nuclear Weapons Upgrade Sees Delay on Leaky Silos, Old Tech,

Tony Capaccio, Bloomberg News,  (Bloomberg) 7 May 21, — Upgrading America’s nuclear missile arsenal will likely take longer than expected because of the complexities of pulling 1970s-era ICBMs out of aging silos and testing and installing replacement missiles and technology to run the system for decades to come, according to a congressional audit.

The Air Force faces the complicated challenge of removing a total of about 400 Minuteman-III intercontinental ballistic missiles and their command-and-control electronics at the rate of about 50 per year from silos and support buildings in various states of deterioration, some with water damage, the Government Accountability Office said in a report Thursday.

The difficulties — which include extracting the missiles and nuclear payloads from the silos, repairing any structural decay, and installing customized electronics and the new weapon, all while maintaining other nuclear systems on alert — mean the new ICBM won’t likely meet an initial 2029 deadline, the declassified GAO report warned.

“The Air Force is using multiple strategies to ensure on-time fielding, including financial incentives for the contractor to meet milestones,” of the Northrop Grumman Corp. program, according to the report. “Nevertheless, program schedule delays are likely” for reasons such as the complicated replacement process.

Modernizing the nation’s Cold War-era capacity to deliver nuclear weapons by air, land and sea — the so-called nuclear triad — remains a key Pentagon priority under the Biden administration after it was jumpstarted by President Barack Obama and continued by President Donald Trump. The effort is expected to cost as much as $1.2 trillion through 2046 for development, purchase and long-term support, the Congressional Budget Office estimated in 2018.

Read the full GAO report on the nuclear triad here………. https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/u-s-nuclear-weapons-upgrade-sees-delay-on-leaky-silos-old-tech-1.1600134

May 8, 2021 Posted by | safety, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Texas Bill prevented – one that would have ”opened the floodgates for uncontrolled amounts of radioactive waste”

Craddick kills Landgraf’s nuclear waste bill,

 Stewart Doreen, MRT.com/Midland Reporter-Telegram, May 6, 2021 A point of order by state Rep. Tom Craddick ultimately killed Brooks Landgraf’s radioactive nuclear waste bill.

Craddick reported late Wednesday night that Landgraf, a state representative from Odessa, told Craddick that he will not pursue this legislation further during the 87th Legislature. 

“(Wednesday), in the interest of the Permian Basin and House District 82, I called a point of order on House Bill 2692 by Rep. Brooks Landgraf”, Craddick stated in a press release. “The point of order was well taken and sustained by the speaker of the House. This legislation would have not added the protections needed to prevent a high-level radioactive waste ban in Texas.”

 Landgraf co-authored the bill that he said would ban the storage and disposal of high-level nuclear waste away from civilian nuclear power plants or university research reactors in Texas. Craddick wrote Wednesday night the bill was filed “with the guise of banning high level radioactive waste.  However, the decision as to whether Texas is a viable storage site for high level radioactive waste is reserved to the federal government.

The bill has been a struggle for Landgraf and its backers in Andrews County. Last week, the Republican Party of Texas called HB 2692 – a “BAD BILL” on its official party Twitter account. Previously, Craddick of Midland and Tommy Taylor of Fasken Oil and Ranch publicly opposed the passage of the legislation.

Craddick added that Landgraf’s bill was “a tax and fee reduction for Waste Control Specialists.  In addition, it allowed for Class A Radioactive waste to be transported and stored without containerization. It eliminated many of the contract requirements for the permit holder and opened the floodgates for uncontrolled amounts of radioactive waste in Texas.”

“When the low-level radioactive waste site in Andrews County was passed in prior legislative sessions these were all important elements to its passage.  Craddick said, “Walking back on a promise to the Permian Basin is not an option.”

House Bill 2692 is not eligible for further consideration at this time, Craddick wrote.

It was the second-straight session that Craddick, the dean of Texas House members, used a point of order to kill a Landgraf-led item. In 2019, Craddick used the measure to kill House Bill 2154 — “enabling legislation” to House Joint Resolution 82, the so-called GROW Fund — because Landgraf had changed the bill to include agencies and “stuff we told people we wouldn’t do,” Craddick said at the time.   AT TP   https://www.mrt.com/business/energy/article/Craddick-kills-Landgraf-s-nuclear-waste-bill-16156948.php

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Scientists refute Exelon’s claim about costs of replacing nuclear with renewable energy.

Exelon CEO: Replacing nuclear with renewables, storage to meet carbon goals could cost Illinois $80B Utility Dive,  May 6, 2021 ”………..Achieving the same amount of zero emissions power through renewables and storage would be 12 times more expensive than continuing to run Illinois’ nuclear plants and cost the state’s consumers $80 billion, Exelon CEO Chris Crane said during the company’s Q1 earnings call on Wednesday………….

the Union of Concerned Scientists disputed Crane’s remarks regarding the cost of replacing nuclear with renewables and storage in Illinois. 

“Crane’s comment that renewables plus storage would cost 12 [times] or $80 billion more than keeping the existing nuke plants running is ridiculous. I’m guessing he’s comparing the incremental cost of keeping them running (basically the subsidies) to the all-in cost of adding new renewables plus storage and the tax credits,” said Steve Clemmer, director of energy research for the UCS Climate and Energy Program.   …….

In addition to the governor’s proposal, several other energy policy reform bills have been introduced in Illinois to drive the state’s energy transition and tackle climate change. Legislative leaders are meeting to develop a package from the various bills that can be considered this session, 

May 8, 2021 Posted by | business and costs, USA | Leave a comment

Biden backs subsidies to keep nuclear plants alive, says Jennifer Granholm, energy chief.

Biden backs subsidies to keep nuclear plants alive, energy chief says, Washington Examiner. by Josh Siegel, Energy and Environment Reporter |   | May 06, 2021 The Biden administration is “eager” to work with Congress on subsidizing economically struggling nuclear plants to keep them from retiring, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said Thursday.

The DOE has not historically subsidized plants, but this is a moment to consider to make sure we keep the current fleet active,” Granholm said in testimony about her agency’s budget request before an energy subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee……

The Biden administration is “eager” to work with Congress on subsidizing economically struggling nuclear plants to keep them from retiring, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said Thursday.

The DOE has not historically subsidized plants, but this is a moment to consider to make sure we keep the current fleet active,” Granholm said in testimony about her agency’s budget request before an energy subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee……..

The White House has signaled privately to lawmakers and stakeholders in recent weeks that it supports taxpayer subsidies to keep nuclear facilities from closing, Reuters reported this week, but no Biden administration official had said so on the record.

Granholm, on Thursday, did not propose a specific type of subsidy, only floating that help for nuclear could be included as part of President Joe Biden’s $2.3 trillion infrastructure and climate spending proposal.

The White House is interested in working with Congress to provide production tax credits to nuclear plants, sources following the conversations have confirmed to the Washington Examiner.  https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/policy/energy/biden-subsidizing-nuclear-plants-energy

May 8, 2021 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment