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1,000 000 Curies of radiation released from the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory since it began!

Published on Jan 18, 2013


Abby Martin takes a look at the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in California, the nuclear testing that occurs at this site and the surrounding community’s unawareness of the potential danger it poses.

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USA’s nuclear workers – cancer from radiation exposure

U.S. ACKNOWLEDGES RADIATION KILLED WEAPONS WORKERS , By MATTHEW L. WALD Published: January 29, 2000   WASHINGTON, Jan. 28— After decades of denials, the government is conceding that since the dawn of the atomic age, workers making nuclear weapons have been exposed to radiation and chemicals that have produced cancer and early death.

Plutonium left Livermore – (but where did it go?)

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January 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

UK useful Cumbria waste storage activist links for upcoming meetings

18 January 2013


On 10 January 2013, the group of all 6 Cumbria MP’s met in Westminster Parliament, to hear evidence concerning radioactive waste investigations and the NDA proposals to buld a GDF, should a suitable site be found. Evidence presented by Stuart Haszeldine and David Smythe is available here.


Edinburgh University School of Geo Sciences 17th Jan 2013 more »

FOUR of Cumbria’s six MPs favour a geological search to see if there is anywhere in the west of the county which might prove suitable to bury radioactive waste. West Cumbria’s two MPs – Jamie Reed (Copeland) and Sir Tony Cunningham (Workington) – have given their backing along with Carlisle’s John Stevenson and Barrow’s John Woodcock following an informal Cumbria cross-party MP session in Westminster. But Rory Stewart (Penrith and The Border) and Tim Farron (Westmorland and Lonsdale) say no formal decision was reached in last Thursday’s evidence-gathering session, held ahead of the January 30 meetings in which Cumbria County Council Cabinet, Copeland and Allerdale borough council executives will decide whether to start trying to identify a potentially suitable underground site through desk top studies. Meanwhile energy minister Baroness Verma has written to the three councils stressing government commitment to make “right of withdrawal” from the repository process legally binding as well as giving assurances over community benefits at a future stage.

Whitehaven News 17th Jan 2013 more »

Baroness Verma’s webchat is available here.

Carlisle News and Stat 17th Jan 2013 more »

Whitehaven News 17th Jan 2013 more »

Stop Nuclear Waste Plans for the Lake District Petition.

38 Degress 17th Jan 2013 more »

Businesses from across Cumbria will be heading down to Westminster to take part in the first Cumbria Day. It has been organised by the county’s MPs who have put party politics to one side to promote Cumbria together. The aim is show decision makers that there is more to Cumbria than the lakes and mountain which draw millions of visitors each year.

ITV 17th Jan 2013 more »

More than 500 people attended a meeting in Keswick to discuss their opposition to plans to bury radioactive waste under the Lake District or the Solway. Cumbria County Council, Allerdale Council and Copeland Council are to vote on whether the Government should include West Cumbria in a list of sites being searched for a a new underground repository for high-level radioactive waste. A quarter of West Cumbria was ruled out of the site search by a preliminary report of the British Geological Survey in 2010. The survey shows 75 per cent of the area left is within the national park. Campaigners have produced a video explaining their opposition to the plans to use Ennerdale as a place to dump nuclear waste underground.

Cumbria24 13th Jan 2013 more »

DITCH THE DUMP DEMO at Bowness Bay on Saturday 19th January 10am for a couple of hours. Come along and join in the Demonstration! There will be street theatre and art events. Help make a giant postcard to present to the Cabinet of Cumbria County Council and come along to make your voice heard.

Facebook 17th Jan 2013 more »

There is a demo in Cumbria on Saturday about the concerns of waste storage up there. Many of us here aren’t able to get up there this saturday so we want to offer solidarity to their action. We have recently been creating a presecence at the railhead where they transfer the highly dangerous radwaste in the middle of Bridgwater town right next to Eastover Primary School. Because of this this saturdays solidarity demo will be outside the railway station in Bridgwater with or without radioactive waste barrel costumes, please come and lend a hand giving out fliers, or just being a presence as a group.

Facebook 17th Jan 2013 more »

Kit and Charles Graves, directors of Lake District Hotels Ltd, have sent this message to people in the hope it will be forwarded, and those of you who object to what may happen will do something to help.

Visit Cumbria (accessed) 17th Jan 2013 more »

HALF a million pounds will be spent on protecting the Lake District’s image if councils agree to look for a nuclear waste burial site in West Cumbria. The Government has earmarked the £500,000 for a nationwide advertising campaign on top of £3.25 million already spent by the Department of Energy on the repository process, The Whitehaven News can reveal. Repository critic and Ennerdale parish councillor David Wood said: “The prospect of this money confirms that siting a GDF in the Lake District will damage the Lake District brand image – otherwise why is so much additional public money being used to promote tourism in Cumbria?

Whitehaven News 17th Jan 2013 more »

Letter from Bruce McKirdy: First, regarding Ennerdale – Mr Wood is entirely correct in saying that we have no current proposals for Ennerdale. The fact that Dr Dearlove, who advised the MRWS Partnership on geology, thinks it may be suitable does not mean we will investigate it in Stage 4. However, if the community decides to proceed to stage 4 and offers it up for investigation we will investigate it (as we would any other site or area offered up by a community). By community, I mean the decision- making bodies (DMBs) who would be advised by a community siting partnership. The definition of those terms is given in the report from the MRWS partnership.

Whitehaven News 17th Jan 2013 more »

January 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Africa mining uranium – GROUPE FORREST INTERNATIONAL (GFI S.A.) – How to improve your image!

 “It is relatively easy for someone to break into the nuclear reactor building or the nuclear waste storage building and steal rods or nuclear waste, with no greater tool than a lock cutter,” the cable continues. “It would also be feasible to pay a CREN-K employee to steal nuclear material.” In fact, this cable reports, one of two nuclear fuel rods stolen from CREN-K in 1998 was later recovered from the Italian Mafia in Rome. Mafia members were allegedly trying to sell it to unidentified customers in the Middle East, the cable adds.

“The second fuel rod has never been found,”

Uranium Mining in the DR Congo A Radiant Business for European Nuclear Companies ?


June 2011

“…The European Union (EU) and North America together consume almost two-thirds of today’s world uranium….”


  GROUPE FORREST INTERNATIONAL (GFI S.A.) is a limited company, under Belgian law, based at Wavre in Belgium. GFI S.A. has a holding structure, which encompasses a range of companies with a common shareholder, the Forrest family. The companies comprising the holding are active in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in Kenya, Nigeria, Central African Republic and in Belgium.


Uranium being smuggled via EA to Iran –

WikiLeaks 2011

Secret messages published by WikiLeaks show great concern on the part of US diplomats with alleged smuggling of uranium from poorly secured mines and nuclear facilities in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In one leaked cable from September 2006, the US embassy in Dar es Salaam suggests that uranium from the DRC may be passing through Tanzania en route  to Iran.

Such trafficking is “common knowledge to two Swiss shipping companies,” this message states, citing “a senior Swiss diplomat” as the source of the allegation. In addition to its worries about Iran’s nuclear programme, the United States fears that raw uranium and processed nuclear material could make its way from Central and East Africa into the hands of terrorist networks.

A United Nations report in November revealed that a Rwandan gang operating in the eastern DRC tried unsuccessfully in 2008 to sell six containers of what was claimed to be uranium mined during the Belgian colonial era. American concern was highlighted last week by the signing of an agreement with the DRC aimed at preventing trafficking of nuclear and radioactive materials. The DRC and Tanzania are both rich in uranium resources. Congo was the source of the uranium used in the US nuclear weapons that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II.


And a July 2007 message from the US embassy in Kinshasa notes that “all of Katanga Province could be said to be somewhat radioactive.” Tanzania, meanwhile, was reported by Reuters in May last year to have at least 54 million pounds (108 million kilos) of uranium oxide deposits. Tanzania expects to begin mining this motherlode in the coming year, Reuters added, reporting that the French energy group Areva is interested in exploiting the country’s uranium deposits. Uranium is a valuable commodity.

The July 2007 cable from the US Kinshasa embassy notes that the price for a pound of the mineral increased from $15 in 2004 to $135 in 2007. (effective January 14, 2013 the market price of U3O8 is US $42.25/lb.* (Price changed -0.50 since last survey a week ago).

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January 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

At Least Three Japanese Hostages in Algerian Gas Plant, Japanese PM Abe Protests the Use of Force by Algerial Military


(UPDATE) From Reuters, 30 hostages and 11 “Islamic militants” (aren’t they terrorists?) reported dead. Dead hostages include 2 Japanese, 2 Britons, and a French.

According to Yomiuri, there were 17 Japanese from Nikki, a plant engineering company.


Conflicting information on what’s unfolding in Algeria:

  • New York Times says “at least four hostages freed”;
  • Reuters says “twenty-five were freed and six were killed”;
  • Al Jazeera (quoted in Reuters article) says “34 of the captives and 15 of their captors had been killed”.

The Guardian has the live update. The military operation to free the hostages has ended, according to the Guardian.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo pork-cutlet-over-curry-rice Abe called the Algerian counterpart to tell him to stop military operation, according to Yomiuri Shinbun(1/17/2013):


Prime Minister Abe made an emergency telephone call to Algerian Prime Minister Sellal, and protested, “We have requested that the human lives come first, and now we are worried that your action will endanger the lives of the hostages. I want you to stop immediately.”


Prime Minister Sellal answered, “They are a dangerous terrorist group, and this (military action) is the best course of action.” Parliamentary Secretary of Ministry of Foreign Affairs Minoru Kiuchi arrived in Algeria, and met with Algerian Foreign Minister Medelci to make a similar request.

PM Abe wants to ditch the Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution so that he can send his “military” (SDF) to war zones to succor his allies. In hostage-taking situations like this, the Japanese government under LDP has always insisted that the situations be resolved in a peaceful manner.

January 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Niger -1,600 tonnes of metal used in uranium extraction at Arlit – Now in the public domain!

“…They said that around 1,000 tonnes of this had been found at a scrap metal dealer’s, where handheld Geiger counter measurements in August showed gamma radioactivity levels to be “more than nine times greater than normal.”“There remains doubt about the fate of the other 600 tonnes,” the groups said in a press release. “Part of this scrap may have been sold abroad.”…”

17 JANUARY 2013 –
France 24
French nuclear firm tightens safety at Niger mine
Two giant towers emit steam at the Areva plant in Tricastin, France, on April 4, 2011. Areva said on Thursday it had beefed up safety procedures at two uranium mines in Niger after green activists said contaminated scrap metal from the facilitieshad been discovered at a local junkyard.

AFP – French nuclear energy conglomerate Areva said on Thursday it had beefed up safety procedures at two uranium mines in Niger after green activists said contaminated scrap metal from the facilities had been discovered at a local junkyard.

A nuclear watchdog association, CRIIRAD, and a group in Niger called Aghir In’Man said 1,600 tonnes of metal used in uranium extraction had been hauled out of the mine complexes at Arlit and were now in the public domain.

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January 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The nuclear week that was

Christina Macpherson's websites & blogs

Christina Macpherson’s websites & blogs

There’s a lot going on.  Most critically – it looks as if the Iraq invasion (for oil), is now being repeated with the Mali invasion (for uranium).  Forbes declares nuclear reactors to be not  a good investment. However, at the same time,there’s a media rash of propaganda for thorium nuclear reactors.

State of the nuclear industry:  IAEA reports a drop in operating reactors worldwide – now down from 437 to 390, as it declares 47 Japanese reactors to be in   “Long-term Shutdown” (LTS).

USA: very discreetly, the USA government rejects nuclear reprocessing.  San Onofre nuclear power plant looks like setting the pattern for the shutdown of USA’s rustbucket nuclear reactors. USA govt considers melting down radioactive metals and putting them into consumer goods, such as kitchen cutlery.

UK. NIMBYism. In Cumbria, some local councils want continued nuclear operations at Sellafield, but at the  same time, they just don’t want any waste disposal in their area.

South Korea: another nuclear reactor shut down due to malfunction.

Fukushima: revelations continue – radioactive groundwater leaking back into reactors.

January 18, 2013 Posted by | Christina's notes | Leave a comment

In Mali – a war for grabbing resources – especially uranium

uranium-enrichmentUranium: encouraging signs and exploration in full swing. Exploration is currently being carried out by several companies with clear indications of deposits of uranium in Mali. Uranium potential is located in the Falea area which covers 150 km² of the Falea- North Guinea basin, a Neoproterozoic sedimentary basin marked by significant radiometric anomalies. Uranium potential in Falea is thought to be 5000 tonnes. The Kidal Project, in the north eastern part of Mali, with an area of 19,930 km2, the project covers a large crystalline geological province known as L’Adrar Des Iforas. Uranium potential in the Samit deposit, Gao region alone is thought to be 200 tonnes.

The War on Mali What You Should Know: An Eldorado of Uranium, Gold, Petroleum, Strategic Minerals  SPY GhanaBy   R. Teichman, News Beacon Ireland, 17 Jan 13

The French government has stated that: …… We have one goal. To ensure that when we leave, when we end our intervention, Mali is safe, has legitimate authorities, an electoral process and there are no more terrorists threatening its territory.” [1]

So this is the official narrative of France and those who support it. And of course this is what is widely reported by the mainstrem media.

France is supported by other NATO members. US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta confirmed that the US was providing intelligence to French forces in Mali. [2]  Canada, Belgium, Denmark and Germany have also publicly backed the French incursion, pledging logistical support in the crackdown on the rebels. [3]

If we are to believe this narrative we are misled again about the real reasons. A look at Mali’s natural resources reveals what this is really about. Continue reading

January 18, 2013 Posted by | indigenous issues, Mali, politics international, Reference, Uranium, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Even very low level “background” radiation is harmful

radiation-warningRecent evidence on the risks of very low-level radiation, Dr Ian Fairlie,  January 17, 2013“…….I’ve previously shown  that a great deal of evidence supports the LNT hypothesis and indicates radiation effects well below 100 mSv.

But in recent months, a flurry of epidemiological studies go further than merely refuting ill-informed articles. They indicate adverse effects to people exposed to very low doses from medical CT scans and other clinical procedures; to infants living near nuclear power stations; and to Chernobyl clean-up workers. They even reveal adverse effects from background radiation to which all of us are exposed.

Together they reveal a pattern of higher-than-expected risks from very low exposures to radiation.

1. Background Radiation

Perhaps the most eye-opening of the recent studies concern background radiation. Most people think that background radiation levels (typically 2 to 3 mSv per year) are very low and are of little concern. But recent authoritative studies clearly indicate that background radiation is not harmless. Continue reading

January 18, 2013 Posted by | 2 WORLD, health, Reference | 2 Comments

Uranium/nuclear film festival – India 19 January

logo-uranium-film-festivalMIC to host film fest on nuclear threat from Jan 19 Manipal, Jan 18, 2013, DHNS:

Manipal Institute of Communication and Manipal Film Study Centre at Manipal University will be organising ‘The Traveling Uranium Film Festival’ on January 19 and 20. 

The International film festival is dedicated to independent documentaries and movies about nuclear power and the whole nuclear fuel chain from uranium mining, nuclear bombs to nuclear waste, from Hiroshima to Fukushima.

Started in Rio de Janeiro in 2011, the International Uranium Film Festival has traveled across Europe and has now come to India.

After successful screenings in New Delhi, Shillong and Ranchi, the film festival is set to showcase documentaries and movies about nuclear issues. Continue reading

January 18, 2013 Posted by | Resources -audiovicual | Leave a comment

Taos and Santa Fe need cleanup of Los Alamos, not nuclear weapons

missile-moneya comprehensive cleanup of Area G, the Lab’s biggest
radioactive dump, could create hundreds of high paying jobs while
permanently protecting the environment. The cities and counties of
Taos and Santa Fe should be pushing the New Mexico Environment
Department (NMED) to require comprehensive cleanup, and they should
insist on that now

Taos should back LANL cleanup, not nuclear weapons
17 Jan 13,
Just under two-thirds of Los Alamos Lab’s annual $2.3 billion budget
is for core nuclear weapons programs, and all remaining LANL programs
support them through excessive overhead and internal lab taxes.
Nevertheless, the city and county of Taos have joined a “Regional
Coalition of LANL Communities” funded by the Department of Energy and
the Los Alamos County government (which is enriched by gross receipts
taxes on Lab operations).

The original purpose of the Regional Coalition was to have local
governments lobby Congress in support of the Lab’s cleanup budget, but
this has already been compromised into supporting LANL’s budget in

The city and county of Taos should be clear and insistent
that it is cleanup they support, and not nuclear weapons programs! Continue reading

January 18, 2013 Posted by | USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

USA government quietly rejects nuclear reprocessing

Perhaps to the disappointment of the AREVA (who emphasized reprocessing as a viable fuel cycle strategy in their blog response), the report seems to go out of its way to minimize the potential role of reprocessing in a future U.S. fuel cycle strategy … should be explicitly constrained to explicitly exclude reprocessing
DOE’s Spent Fuel Strategy: Disappointing for Nuclear Advocates The Energy Collective  by:
Steve Skutnik  January 17, 2013  There is a hallowed tradition in Washington known as the “Friday Document Dump,” in which news and announcements the government wishes to bury are strategically timed for Friday afternoons, when such announcements tend to fall through the cracks of the typical news cycle (i.e., assuming reporters are even present to cover the event, the strategic timing tends to ensure it will miss the weekend papers, thus effectively “burying” the story by the time the new week rolls around).
In this storied tradition, the Department of Energy released the Obama administration’s response to the Blue Ribbon Commission report last Friday to relatively scarce media coverage. In fact, one would be hard-pressed to find any coverage in many of the major papers; what little coverage there was can be found in the Washington TimesPlatts(an energy publication), and the Las Vegas Review-Journal. (Needless to say, the timing appears to have had its intended effect). Continue reading

January 18, 2013 Posted by | Reference, reprocessing, USA | Leave a comment

It’s the uranium, stupid! France’s war in Mali

Although Niger has been France’s primary uranium trading partner in the region, investors are currently estimating 5,200 tonnes of untapped uranium sources in Mali, making the requirements of a favourable government and a suppressed civil society all the more urgent.

protest-Niger The curbs on civil liberties in the West which the so-called War on Terror forces upon citizens is part of the same struggle that activists in West Africa are fighting against uranium mining corporations

Blood for Uranium: France’s Mali intervention has little to do with terrorism Adam Elliott-Cooper looks at the geo-strategic and economic interests shaping the current French intervention in Mali. 17 Jan 13, France opened 2013 with a series of airstrikes on Northern Mali to prevent “the establishment of a terrorist state”. At the time of writing, 11 civilians (including two children) have been killed, and according to the UN, an estimated 30,000 have been displaced. The morbid irony of the France’s leaders bombing people in order to prevent a “terrorist state” appears to be lost on them, but this may be due to their eyes being on something far more important – Mali’s economy. (Picture: Activists in Niger protesting uranium mining company AREVA) Continue reading

January 18, 2013 Posted by | indigenous issues, Mali, politics international, Reference, Uranium, weapons and war | 3 Comments

Leukemias near Nuclear Power Stations – new evidence

Taken together, the new studies indicate that our current understandings about radiation risks, especially in infants and children, may be incorrect and they may need to be revised upwards. In particular, the current adult (absolute) ICRP risk for fatal cancer of 5% per Sv and the ICRP’s use of a dose and dose-rate effectiveness factor (DDREF) look increasingly out of date.

The new studies also mean that our public radiation limits and constraints may need to be revised. 

cancer_cellsRecent evidence on the risks of very low-level radiation, Dr Ian Fairlie, January 17, 2013   

“…… 4. Leukemias near Nuclear Power Stations  The final area is exposures from nuclear power stations.

Readers will be aware of my lectures showing that about 40 studies worldwide indicate increased leukemia risks among children within 5 km of nuclear power plants (NPPs). In particular, the important 2008 KiKK case-control study (discussed in Fairlie, 2009), which was commissioned by the German Government, found large increases in the risks of child leukemias and embryonal cancers near all German NPPs. This authoritative report led to geographical studies sponsored by the governments of France, UK, Switzerland and Germany. These have now been published and all four had similar findings, ie  30% to 40% increases in child leukemias near NPPs – see table from Körblein and Fairlie (2012) which contains the references to these four government studies.

Table: Studies of observed (O) and expected (E) childhood leukemias (under 5 year olds) within 5 km of NPPs

Dataset O E SIR=O/E 90% CI one-sided p-value
Germany 34 24.1 1.41 1.04-1.88 0.0328
Great Britain 20 15.4 1.30 0.86-1.89 0.1464
France 14 10.2 1.37 0.83-2.15 0.1506
Switzerland 11 7.9 1.40 0.78-2.31 0.1711
Pooled 79 57.6 1.37 1.13-1.66 0.0042

The important point here is that most scientists think that radiation exposures to local residents from NPPs are extremely small. Indeed, many nuclear scientists remain in denial about the relationship between proximity to NPPs and child leukemias despite the bountiful clear evidence which exists. Yet the evidence of child leukemias near NPPs fits well with the evidence emerging from background radiation and medical radiation. Continue reading

January 18, 2013 Posted by | 2 WORLD, health, Reference | 1 Comment

Malfunction, again: South Korea shuts down nuclear reactor

safety-symbol-SmAnother S Korea nuclear reactor shut down due to malfunction Charles Lee, Seoul (Platts)–17 Jan 2013 Another South Korean nuclear reactor was shut down Thursday due to a malfunction just two weeks after two of Buy-S-Korea-nukesthree troubled reactors were restarted amid mounting electricity demand due to a prolonged cold spell…. This is the second time in less than six months that Uljin-1 has been shut down due to malfunction. It has been operating since September 1988. The Uljin power plant houses five other reactors, which have been operating for between 12 and 30 years. …..

On November 5, two 1 GW nuclear reactors at the Yeonggwang plant on the southwest coast were closed for at least two months of unscheduled maintenance because they used parts supplied with forged quality certificates.

As electricity demand rose to all-time highs, the country restarted the two reactors late last month despite lingering concerns about nuclear safety. Yonggwang-3 has remained closed since October 18, when minor cracks were found.

The country’s nuclear reactors experienced temporary unplanned shutdowns more than 15 times last year due to malfunctioning equipment.

The state-run nuclear regulator, the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission, has started conducting stress tests on all reactors to determine whether power stations in the future can withstand natural disasters……

January 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Video: Cumbrians want Sellafield nuclear facility, just not the wastes

Oscar-wastesVIDEO Protests spread on Cumbria nuclear waste dump plan, guardian UK 17 Jan 13As Cumbria Tourism joins the Lake District national park inwarning against research in Ennerdale and Eskdale, local meetings and rallies are spreading Here’s more on the growing concern that nuclear waste burial could be considered within the borders of the Lake District national park, followingCumbria Tourism’s stand against the prospect earlier this week.

A meeting in Keswick saw all but three of 500 present vote against the idea of pursuing research in Ennerdale and Eskdale, one of the few areas of stable geology in West Cumbria, the home of the Sellafield nuclear complex.

As well as being in the national park, the lonely valley is the subject of an experiment called Wild Ennerdale which has barred all traffic apart from a few forestry trucks and the Land Rover which services remote Black Sail youth hostel. Even the latter has been limited to the minimum possible number of journeys to sustain the many walkers to whom it is a shrine.

You can read about the Guardian Northerner‘s weekend there last November, here, and a post from its recent wardens Suzanna Brett and Martin Lyne here.……

January 18, 2013 Posted by | Resources -audiovicual, UK, wastes | Leave a comment