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The menace of humanity’s growing environmental footprint

Are we all doomed?, New Statesman, Martin Rees,11 June 11 “…….We have entered an era when human beings pose a greater threat than nature to the earth’s future. This started with the invention of nuclear weapons. Robert McNamara, US defence secretary during the 1962 Cuban missile crisis, later said: “We came within a hair’s-breadth of nuclear war without realising it. It’s no credit to us that we escaped – [Nikita] Khrushchev and [John F] Kennedy were lucky, as well as wise.”
The threat of global nuclear annihilation involving tens of thousands of bombs has been in abeyance since the end of the cold war. But, in future decades, a global political realignment could lead to a stand-off between new superpowers which could be handled less well or less luckily than the Cuban crisis was. In the meantime, there is more risk than ever that smaller nuclear arsenals will be used in a regional context, or even by terrorists……
Humankind’s collective footprint is growing. It may irreversibly degrade our environment as our numbers grow and we each consume more. Advanced technology threatens us with other vulnerabilities…….
“The bells which toll for mankind, are – most of them, anyway – like the bells on Alpine cattle; they are attached to our own necks and it must be our fault if they do not make a cheerful and harmonious sound.”
New Statesman – Are we all doomed?


June 14, 2011 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

94% vote against nuclear energy in Italy’s referendum

a historic result. …The expected majority against nuclear power was 94%……The outcome was a huge success for the anti-nuclear movement in the world’s first nationwide vote on the issue since Japan’s Fukushima disaster….”The era of nuclear [energy] is coming to an end today….”

Berlusconi’s nuclear power plans crushed Referendums see huge votes against PM’s plans – a second setback in under two weeks John Hooper in Rome,,   13 June 2011  The anti-nuclear movement won a crushing victory in Italy on Monday when well over 90% of voters rejected Silvio Berlusconi‘s plans for a return to nuclear power generation.

The result represented an overwhelming setback for the prime minister, who had tried to thwart the outcome by discouraging Italians from taking part. Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | Italy, politics | Leave a comment

Anger of Japanese as thousands protest against nuclear power

AUDIO Thousands protest against nuclear power in Japan, ABC Radio AM Mark Willacy reported this story on Monday, June 13, 2011 “…MARK WILLACY: Marching on the headquarters of the Tokyo Electric Power Company, thousands of Japanese rallied against nuclear power in one of the biggest demonstrations since the triple disaster.”I’m really worried that my children’s kids will be born with defects,” says Yu Matsuda, holding her young daughter.

“I have no choice but to live in the radiation zone even though it’s dangerous,” says school teacher Yoshihisa Satou.

Last week, radioactive strontium-90 was found as far away as 60 kilometres from the crippled Fukushima plant. And that’s a particular worry, because strontium has a half-life of 30 years and is known as a bone-seeker because it can cause bone cancer and leukaemia.  And now radioactive caesium above legal limits has been detected in tea, grown in Shizuoka more than 350 kilometres away from the nuclear plant….
AM – Thousands protest against nuclear power in Japan 13/06/2011

June 14, 2011 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Fukushima Investigation Panel might be taken over by Nuclear Industry

the possibility of METI officials renewing their push for control of the panel. With Kan expected to step down in the near future, the energy mandarins may still have their way. ( Image below from Japan Nuclear Industry Trying To Hijack Fukushima Investigation Panel  )

Japan Nuclear Industry Trying To Hijack Fukushima Investigation Panel by Alexander Higgins – June 13, 2011 Japan’s largest newspaper is reporting that bureaucrats associated with the nuclear industry in Japan are trying to hijack the Fukushima investigation panel.

While the prime minister has rebuked their first attempt, he is expected to step down any time now at which point they will try to take it over again. METI tried to gain influence over Fukushima panel Asashi Shimbum 2011/06/12 – BY SHINJI MURAMATSU Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | Japan, politics | Leave a comment

For first time,U.S. utilities name nuclear wastes as their top worry

While respondents of the annual survey have cited nuclear waste disposal and storage as a concern in the past, respondents ranked it as a top concern for the first time this year,

US Utilities Concerned About Water, Nuclear Waste Disposal – Study WSJ, DOW JONES NEWSWIRES,-By Cassandra Sweet, * JUNE 13, 2011 U.S. utilities are increasingly concerned about adequate water supply and nuclear waste disposal and storage, Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | business and costs | Leave a comment

Deception and mistrust crippled Japan’s response to Fukushima disaster

many of the residents around the plant who evacuated went north, on the assumption that winds blew south during winter in that area. That took them directly into the radioactive plume, he said — exposing them to the very radiation that they were fleeing….

In Nuclear Crisis, Crippling Mistrust NYT, By NORIMITSU ONISHI and MARTIN FACKLER, June 12, 2011 “… became clear that a prime minister who had built his career on suspicion of the collusive ties between Japan’s industry and bureaucracy was acting nearly in the dark. He had received a confusing risk analysis from the chief nuclear regulator, a fervently pro-nuclear academic whom aides said Mr. Kan did not trust. He was also wary of the company that operated the plant, given its history of trying to cover up troubles… Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | Japan, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Over-exposure to radiation- six more Fukushima workers reported

Six more Tepco staff exposed beyond limit | The Japan Times Online June 14, 2011 Radiated workers may be drop in Fukushima bucket Kyodo Six more workers involved in efforts to contain the nuclear crisis at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 power plant are feared to have been exposed to radiation above the emergency limit, Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Monday. Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | - Fukushima 2011 | Leave a comment

Threat of nuclear war and ecological calamity is not diminishing

“One Week on Earth” – Michael Tobias – Green Conversations – Forbes 13 June 11 “…..Sweden: A new report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute declares that with over 5,000 nuclear weapons ready for use just within the U.S., Russia, France and Britain – and a total of 20,530 nuclear weapons known to exist – the threat of nuclear war is not diminishing. A single mad person, with the stroke of a key, could cause the greatest ecological calamity since the extinction of the dinosaurs some 65 million years ago….
“One Week on Earth” – Michael Tobias – Green Conversations – Forbes

June 14, 2011 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Public kept in the dark as Taiwan passes unpopular pro nuclear budget

Green Citizen Action Alliance secretary-general Tsuei Su-hsin (崔愫欣) said it was undemocratic for legislators to arbitrarily pass the huge budget when many of the details are kept secret from the public, not to mention barring citizens from observing the voting process from inside the legislature.

Lawmakers pass new nuclear funding,  Taipei Times, By Shih Hsiu-chuan and Lee I-chia14 June The legislature yesterday voted down a set of anti-nuclear motions proposed by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). Holding just one-third of the legislative seats, the DPP failed in 11 attempts to block the use of nuclear power, despite support from anti-nuclear activists who have staged a protest outside the legislature since Sunday night. Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | politics, Taiwan | Leave a comment

America -“business as usual” despite growing ecological issues

“One Week on Earth” – Michael Tobias – Green Conversations – Forbes 13 June 11 America: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency struggles to safeguard Americans from greenhouse gasses, mercury poisoning and a Who’s Who of environmental toxins, while the very powers of government that created the legislation in the first place, such as the Clean Air Act signed into law by President Nixon, adopt the old, tired rhetoric of jobs versus the environment.Some acknowledge serious ecological issues confronting Americans while they engage in promoting business as usual.
“One Week on Earth” – Michael Tobias – Green Conversations – Forbes

June 14, 2011 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

The problem of Pakistan’s risk of nuclear terrorism

Pakistan nuclear terror: an interview with Stanford’s Scott SaganA leading expert on South Asian nuclear security discusses the risks of terrorists seizing materials from Pakistan’s arsenal.Global Post,David CaseJune 13, 2011“…… To get a better sense of the risks that the arsenal could fall into terrorist hands, GlobalPost spoke with Scott D. Sagan, one of the world’s leading authorities on Pakistan’s nuclear program….. “I think that the security of both Pakistani nuclear weapons and Pakistani fissionable will remain a serious concern for the United States and all international actors….. Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | Pakistan, safety | Leave a comment

Plunge in Uranium Energy’s Shares

INVESTORS SURRENDER THEIR SHARES OF URANIUM ENERGY, SHARES DROP 2.6% (UEC) Stock Market Research – Zacks Investment Research  Chip Brian Jun 13, 2011 (SmarTrend(R) Spotlight via COMTEX) — Uranium Energy (AMEX:UEC) is one of today’s worst performing low-priced stocks, down 2.6% to $2.94 on 0.3x average daily volume. Approximately 250,000 shares have traded hands today vs. 30-day average volume of 865,000 shares. Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | Uranium | Leave a comment

Huge and expanding costs of USA’s nuclear arsenal

Nuclear Paradox: Shrinking U.S. Arsenal Requires Huge New Expenditures, Forbes, Jun. 13 2011   by Loren Thompson “…..The anti-nuclear rhetoric coming out of the White House during Obama’s early days in office was so persistent that some senior military officers worried the new president was taking America in the direction of unilateral disarmament, even though the candidate had explicitly ruled out that possibility during the campaign. But the military need not have worried, because the way things are turning out, Barack Obama is likely to spend more money on the U.S. nuclear arsenal than any U.S. president since Ronald Reagan. Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Murky background to plan for nuclear plant in Belarus

Rep. Dan Burton: 25 Years After Chernobyl, Russia and Belarus Still Don’t Get It, HUFFINGTON POST, 13 June 11“…..a new nuclear power plant set for construction this fall on former Soviet territory raises alarm at how little has been learned.What set Chernobyl apart from Fukushima more than anything else was the way the closed Soviet regime responded to the disaster, remaining in denial for weeks that a catastrophe was unfolding. The same could occur in Belarus, which is currently ruled by an autocratic leader who falsified his own reelection last December. Belarus and Russia’s mishandling of the proposal to build a reactor near Astraviec, a town in western Belarus, is a warning sign the West should not ignore. Again, we see the potential lack of transparency, international coordination, and communication……..
Rep. Dan Burton: 25 Years After Chernobyl, Russia and Belarus Still Don’t Get It

June 14, 2011 Posted by | Belarus, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Injustice of nuclear waste near Taiwan’s indigenous people

it was unfair for Aborigines, who usually consume less energy than other people in Taiwan, to be exposed to the dangers of coal mines in the past, and now nuclear waste….

Lawmakers pass new nuclear funding,  Taipei Times, By Shih Hsiu-chuan and Lee I-chia 14 June “……Pani (拔耐), an Aboriginal woman and cofounder of Raging Citizens Act Now, provided a clear picture of the implications of nuclear energy for ordinary citizens. Continue reading

June 14, 2011 Posted by | Taiwan, wastes | Leave a comment