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Legal action against UK plan for nuclear power plant in Bristol channel

justiceAn Taisce launches legal challenge to UK nuclear station plan, Irish Times Eoin Burke-Kennedy May 1, 2013,  Heritage group commences judicial review proceedings in London over plan to build plant in Bristol channel An Taisce has launched a legal challenge to the UK government’s decision to grant planning permission for a nuclear power plant in the Bristol channel.

The heritage group said it had commenced judicial review proceedings in London to challenge the legality of UK secretary of state Ed Davey’s decision’s to grant permission to build and operate a nuclear station at Hinkley Point, 150 miles from the Irish coast.

In legal papers issued to the court yesterday, An Taisce challenges the legal compliance of the decision by the government with the EU’s Environmental Impact Assessment Directive and the UK’s own regulations on transboundary impacts and consultation.

“Despite the nuclear power plant being nearer to the coast of Ireland than it is to Leeds, the UK decided not to consult with the Irish public about the decision before it granted consent in March,” An Taisce said in a statement.

“The first time many Irish people learned about the nuclear power plant proposal was when the decision was announced. Their views were not therefore taken into consideration as part of the UK government’s decision and assessment process.”

The UK government gave the green light to build the proposed Hinkley Point C plant in March to the French energy company EDF,…… “The UK government decided to grant permission to build and operate a nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point without consulting the Irish public or taking into account significant potential risks of the power plant across national boundaries,” Rosa Curlingfrom the legal firm Leigh Day, who is representing An Taisce, said…… http://www.irishtimes.com/news/environment/an-taisce-launches-legal-challenge-to-uk-nuclear-station-plan-1.1379545

May 3, 2013 Posted by | Legal, UK | Leave a comment

Rapidly declining cost of solar energy

sun-championThe Falling Cost Of Solar Energy Is Surprising Everyone http://au.businessinsider.com/citi-the-solar-age-is-dawning-2013-5   Very good graphs  Everyone’s talking about all the new oil and gas being produced thanks to new drilling methods.

But there’s another narrative nipping at the shale boom’s heels: solar energy.  And it’s expanding just as fast.

It’s just that the scale is not quite the same. But that’s changing.

Citi has just named solar photovoltaics, which convert solar radiation into electric currents via semiconductors, to its list of 10 world-disrupting technologies.

In a note this week in advance of the disruption report, Citi’s Jason Channell said that in many cases, renewables are already at cost parity with established forms of electricity sources.

The biggest surprise in recent years has been the speed at which the price of solar panels has reduced, resulting in cost parity being achieved in certain areas much more quickly than was ever expected; the key point about the future is that these fast ‘learning rates’ are likely to continue, meaning that the technology just keeps getting cheaper.

………. so at peak solar exposure, parts of the southwest U.S. are now already capable of meeting their electricity needs via solar panels. …

Channell writes:

The rapidly expanding parity provides enormous scope for growth in the solar industry, driven by standalone economics as opposed to subsidies, which are becoming ever scarcer in an austerity-driven world.

As a previous Saudi oil minister once noted, “The stone age didn’t end for a lack of stones…”, and this substitutional process can be well demonstrated looking at the US energy mix over the longer term.

Gas isn’t going away, but renewables are coming on strong.

May 3, 2013 Posted by | renewable | Leave a comment

Radioactive groundwater in Santa Susanna could take centuries to clean up

water-radiationSanta Susana groundwater cleanup could take centuries, official says, VC Star, By Mike Harris, April 18, 2013 The groundwater cleanup at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory, the site of a 1959 partial nuclear meltdown, could take centuries, a state official said Wednesday night.

The soil decontamination will take far less time, a few or more years, but might not be finished by a 2017 deadline, Mark Malinowski of the state Department of Toxic Substances Control told about 100 people during a cleanup update at the Grand Vista Hotel in Simi Valley.

“It’s a very aggressive schedule to get to 2017, and many things have to happen correctly in order to get there,” said Malinowski, the department’s cleanup team manager.

The groundwater cleanup will take “a lot longer … decades, possibly centuries to complete,” Malinowski said. “Groundwater is an extremely difficult thing to clean up. This contamination we’re dealing with did not happen overnight.”……

Boeing owns most of the 2,850-acre site, formerly the Rocketdyne nuclear and rocket engine test facility, in the hills between Simi Valley and the San Fernando Valley. The rest of the site is owned by the federal government and administered by NASA.

During a question-and- answer period, cleanup activists sharply questioned Malinowski’s statement that no significant contamination has been found beyond the site’s boundaries.

“I had to remind him that in 2008, they removed three football fields of contaminated soil off the adjacent Sage Ranch Park property,” William Bowling said. “And then last year, the EPA found radioactivity in a well on the campus owned by the American Jewish University, which also adjoins the site.

“They’re not giving the public the clear picture, which is that there is off-site contamination,” Bowling said. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2013/apr/18/santa-susana-soil-cleanup-may-not-make-2017-deadli/#ixzz2SI1pAhgC

May 3, 2013 Posted by | USA, water | Leave a comment

Step by step shutdown of nuclear energy in Germany

Germany aims to become one of the greenest countries in the world – with a huge shift towards renewable energy and massive energy savings

Map-Germany-shut-nuclear-pl

May 3, 2013 Posted by | Germany, politics | Leave a comment

Foreign uranium companies rip off impoverished Niger

the grievances expressed by representatives of local populations in the mining zones and pastoral peoples as well as government representatives. Concerns relate to radioactive pollution, water resource depletion, work-related diseases for mine workers, and the appropriation of land and water resources, including legally enshrined common property regimes and pastoral territories, without required compensation.

It is widely acknowledged among government staff that the Nigerien government is not able to properly implement its environmental legislation and monitor the uranium mining industry.

Niger: Development Cooperation Must Support the Environmental Governance of Uranium Mining THE ISN BLOG, Rasmus K Larsen 2 May 2013 Niger’s new development strategy, the Economic and Social Development Plan, is also intended to guide international development cooperation. Environmental governance of uranium mining, the country’s by far largest single economic activity, appears hitherto to have constituted a ‘blind spot’ for environmentally oriented development cooperation. It is now time to remove the blinkers and include support to strengthen environmental governance of the mining sector in new programmes to assist Niger in meeting its development challenges

Niger is well known in international media as one of the world’s poorest countries, struggling with chronic structural hunger and malnutrition. UNDP ranks Niger 186 out of 187 countries in the Human Development Index, and in 2011, five million people (33% of Niger’s population) were at ‘high risk’ to food insecurity.

What is less well known is that Niger also hosts the fourth largest uranium production in the world. Export values totalled over EUR 348 million in 2010, representing more than twice the total development assistance finance received during the same year. However, the state retains less than one fifth of the value of the uranium ore that is exported. The exploitation of the mineral wealth by international investors is expanding, with granted and requested mining concessions comprising close to 10% of the national territory…….

Attention to environmental impacts or risks associated with the mining sector goes seemingly without mention in the guiding documents of the principal development partners, including the EU, the World Bank, the UNDP, and the African Development Bank.

Severe environmental governance issues
This is in stark contrast to the grievances expressed by representatives of local populations in the mining zones and pastoral peoples as well as government representatives. Concerns relate to radioactive pollution, water resource depletion, work-related diseases for mine workers, and the appropriation of land and water resources, including legally enshrined common property regimes and pastoral territories, without required compensation.

It is widely acknowledged among government staff that the Nigerien government is not able to properly implement its environmental legislation and monitor the uranium mining industry. The Environmental Impact Assessment Bureau has only one person in place to verify all mining project applications in the country and, although legally required, not all verification missions are undertaken. The same applies to the National Centre for Radioprotection, which lacks the necessary capacity e.g. to undertake surprise inspections. The impacts and risks highlighted by civil society must be taken seriously. Due to deficiencies in the public administration, there are considerable constraints in enforcing and implementing the legislative and administrative framework – the very same framework, which development cooperation has helped to put in place……

Any mining activity will carry with it an environmental toll. The decision to sacrifice natural resources and human health, and ultimately lives of citizens, for economic gain will be the executive decision of the mandated political authority – in this case the Nigerien government……..

The Nigerien uranium mining sector is also intricately linked to the geopolitical energy security interests of some donor countries. The mines are operated by foreign companies (the French AREVA Group and Chinese investors). EU countries such as France, which has been involved in uranium mining since Niger gained independence, remain some of the largest buyers of the uranium ore – thus directly stimulating the mining activities and their detrimental impacts. This raises the question how donor countries could better supervise the behaviour of corporations incorporated within their own territories, thus implementing the recent UN guidelines for the supervision of multinational corporations (in “Protect, Respect and Remedy: a Framework for Business and Human Rights”). Indeed, when transparent and comprehensive problem identification is missing as the basis for donor support, then it opens for speculation that the ignorance of mining-related environmental issues and the crisis discourse on desertification and food insecurity are mobilized as instruments to divert attention from geopolitical interests in the country’s mineral wealth.

With its new development strategy, the Nigerien government emphasises the urgency of increasing mining fees and extraction tariffs to raise the state revenue and strengthen oversight with mining corporations. Importantly, specific attention is also directed at the need to improve the coordination between the mining and environmental sectors and their limited human and institutional capacities. This should be interpreted as an invitation from the Nigerien government to its development partners to proactively support enforcement of the existing environmental regulations of the mining sector……

Hopefully, the concerns expressed by people experiencing the impacts of the uranium mining industry first hand will be included in the list of priorities for the on-going negotiation between the Nigerien government and its development partners, among them the European Commission and Danida, on how to spend the EUR 3.7 billions. http://isnblog.ethz.ch/isn-security-watch/niger-development-cooperation-must-support-the-environmental-governance-of-uranium-mining

May 3, 2013 Posted by | indigenous issues, Niger | Leave a comment

Chernobyl radiation still being monitored by Czech Republic

text-radiationLN: Czechs still checking Chernobyl radiation, Prague Daily Monitor ČTK |  30 APRIL 2013  – A Czech military helicopter from the Brve, central Bohemia, unit still regularly checks the areas with increased radiation over which a radioactive cloud burst after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident, daily Lidove noviny (LN) writes Monday.

The 314th warning centre of weapons of mass destruction was built in the late 1960s as the first facility with which the former Czechoslovakia wanted to face an “imperialist” nuclear attack. LN writes.

At present, its staff conduct a round-o-clock monitoring of the radiation and chemical situation in the whole of the Czech Republic, it adds.

“When the nuclear facility in the Japanese Fukushima blasted in 2011, we checked the orchestra that returned from Japan,” a military commander is quoted as saying.

Last week, the team had a different task. It prepared an Mi-17 transport military helicopter for a mission to the Sumava Mountains, south Bohemia, LN writes.

Along with experts from the Czech State Office for Nuclear Safety (SUJB), it must regularly check the places with increased radiation in which a radioactive cloud rained after the Chernobyl disaster, it adds.

While radioactivity has disappeared from the places with agricultural use, it is still preserved in some places with no human activity, LN writes.

In some Sumava areas, there are problems with wild boars whose bodies contain excessive quantities of the Chernobyl caesium, it adds….. http://praguemonitor.com/2013/04/30/ln-czechs-still-checking-chernobyl-radiation

May 3, 2013 Posted by | EUROPE, radiation | Leave a comment

Duke Energy pulls out of building 2 new nuclear reactors

thumbs-downDuke Energy suspends licensing for nuclear reactors near Raleigh Charlotte Business Journal, by John Downey, 2 May 13,    Duke Energy Corp. has asked federal regulators to suspend its application to build two 1,017-megawatt nuclear units at its Shearon Harris nuclear plant near Raleigh. Dhiaa Jamil, president of Duke Energy Nuclear, cites slowing growth in demand for electricity as the reason for the decision….. The decision is the latest sign that the once-touted “nuclear renaissance” is faltering in the United States. …. http://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/blog/power_city/2013/05/duke-energy-suspends-licensing-for.html

May 3, 2013 Posted by | business and costs, USA | 1 Comment

USA’s present danger of nuclear spent fuel pools

nuclear-cooling-pondCongress needs to focus on how nuclear waste is stored now By Dave Lochbaum and Robert Cowin, Union of Concerned Scientists – 05/01/13  U.S. nuclear power plants have been generating electricity for more than 50 years, but the nuclear industry and the federal government have yet to figure out what to do with nuclear waste, which remains dangerously radioactive for thousands of years. On April 25, a bipartisan group of senators — Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) — released draft legislation addressing this intractable problem. Continue reading

May 3, 2013 Posted by | Reference, USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Japanese media hides the truth about Fukushima

Bad news Has the media hidden the truth about Fukushima? Number 1 Shimbun 2 May 13, David McNeill,  Two years after the Fukushima nuclear crisis began, two media experts dissect how it has been covered by the media. Takashi Uesugi is a freelance journalist and author of several books on the Fukushima crisis, including Terebi Wa Naze Heiki De Uso Wo Tsukunoka? (“Why does television tell so many lies?”). He is also one of the founders of The Free Press Association of Japan (www.fpaj.jp), an attempt to offer an alternative to Japan’s press club system. Mamoru Ito is professor of media and cultural studies at Waseda University and author of Terebi Wa Genpatsu Jiko Dou Tsutaetenoka? (“How did television cover the nuclear accident?). Both are highly critical of the media’s performance.

Uesugi-san, is it true that you have been banned from the media because of your comments on Fukushima?
Until two years ago, I had regular programs on television and radio. Now the only regular radio that I do is Tokyo FM. I don’t do TBS radio [where he had a regular slot]. I have no hope of appearing on NHK or on the commercial networks. I used to be a regular or semi-regular on several shows but now not even once. I was also a regular guest on radio shows, but not anymore.

I found out two years ago that the electric utilities in Japan are major TV sponsors. That year, they spent ¥70~88.8 billion on advertising, more than Panasonic’s ¥70 billion and Toyota’s ¥50 billion. When I started claiming that this amounted to bribery of the media by Tepco, I no longer was asked to appear on radio shows……… http://no1.fccj.ne.jp/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=870

May 3, 2013 Posted by | Japan, media | Leave a comment

The Oak Ridge anti nuclear protestors

THE PROPHETS of OAK RIDGE, WT, 2 May 13 Dan Za Last summer, in the dead of night, three peace activists penetrated the exterior of Y-12 in Tennessee, supposedly one of the most secure nuclear-weapons facilities in the United States. A drifter, an 82-year-old nun and a house painter. They face trial next week on charges that fall under the sabotage section of the U.S. criminal code. And if they had been terrorists armed with explosives, intent on mass destruction? That nightmare scenario underlies the government’s response to the intrusion. This is the story of two competing worldviews, of conscience vs. court, of fantasy vs. reality, of history vs. the future…… http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/style/2013/04/29/the-prophets-of-oak-ridge/

May 3, 2013 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Danger of ultraviolet radiation to eyes

UV radiation may take years to show its effects, but they can be devastating http://onlineathens.com/magazine/2013-04-29/uv-radiation-may-take-years-show-its-effects-they-can-be-devastating By APRIL BURKHART y, April 29, 2013  Playing outside is all fun and games until someone loses their eyesight due to ultraviolet radiation.

Whether spending the day at the beach, hiking a trail at a national park or hanging outside with friends during at a cookout, people are exposed to eye-damaging UV radiation that damages surface tissues and internal structures, such as the cornea and lens. Continue reading

May 3, 2013 Posted by | 2 WORLD, health, radiation | Leave a comment

CNN to air nuclear power propaganda- and closes down their “lively debate” comments section!

Read the comments.. for a good expose of the PR machine at work! They closed down the comments a bit quick perhaps? to find out why.. read on..

http://enenews.com/shock-cnn-to-air-nuclear-power-propaganda-irrational-fears-of-nukes-systematically-debunks-the-myths-and-misinformation

Published: April 30th, 2013 at 1:43 pm ET
By

Title: CNN Films Announces Acquisition of ‘Pandora’s Promise’ for Fall 2013 Broadcast
Source: CNN
Date: April 30th, 2013

CNN Films has acquired the domestic television rights for PANDORA’S PROMISE […] The film will premiere on CNN/U.S. in November 2013 […]

The atomic bomb and accidents at Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, and Fukushima bring to mind apocalyptic disasters, but the science and experience since suggest that long-held fears about nuclear power may be wrong. […] PANDORA’S PROMISE examines how irrational fears of “nukes” may have extended the era of fossil fuels […]

“PANDORA’S PROMISE should inspire broad discussion on the fundamental issues of economic and social disparities and environmental risks,” said Amy Entelis, senior vice president for talent and content development for CNN Worldwide. […]

“He reports the history and how we got here, spotlights the challenges, and systematically debunks the myths and misinformation that have so clouded this essential debate – before this important film,” Malhotra said.

Undaunted and independent, PANDORA’S PROMISE is a groundbreaking work that is forever changing the conversation about the myths and science behind the deeply emotional and polarizing issue of nuclear power. […]

Image source ; His narrative of how he killed a guy in Vietnam? “Yeah, he died. I’ve got a good lob.”

See also: ‘The Daily Show’ is going nuclear: Nuclear industry will use program for ad campaign that claims to display value of atomic power — Trying to target younger audience -Bloomberg

And more nuclear PR spin here.. Targeting younger viewers as well! Effective targeted marketing in the UK.. notice how the spokesman for the nuclear space race research funding talks like a primary school teacher.. the audience are twenty plus!

And obviously this points to a global and very expensive push for the nuclear lobby

Icarus Interstellar: Extended interview with Richard Osborne – Truthloader Investigates

No difficult questions here either!

May 3, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Expert: Fukushima nuclear material to wash up on beaches and be blown over surrounding countryside

http://enenews.com/expert-fukushima-nuclear-material-wash-beaches-be-blown-surrounding-countryside

Image

Published: May 2nd, 2013 at 11:35 am ET
By

Title: ‘A very fragile situation’: Leaks from Japan’s wrecked nuke plant raise fears
Source: NBC News
Author: Arata Yamamoto and Ian Johnston
Date: May 1, 2013

[…] Independent nuclear expert John Large — who has given evidence on the Fukushima disaster to the U.K. parliament and written reports about it for Greenpeace — said there would be hundreds of tons of “intensely radioactive” material in the plant. […]

Large said the plant was close to the water table, so it was difficult to stop water getting in and out. […]

Larged added: “It may have some marked effect on the health of future generations in Japan. What it will create is a Fukushima generation — like in Nagasaki and Hiroshima – where girls particularly will have difficulty marrying because of the stigma of being brought up in a radiation area.”

Leaks into the sea would not only affect the marine environment, Large said, as tiny radioactive particles would be washed up on the beach, dried in the sun and then blown over the surrounding countryside by the wind. […]

See also: Local L.A.-area Paper: “Radioactive sea spray has been shown to blow hundreds of kilometers inland” -Study

Recent extract of John Large speaking at the UK Parliament

 

“….Nuclear engineer John Large criticized the policy of the United Kingdom nuclear regulatory agency, since there is no way to deal with serious events, such as terrorist attacks, it has still been unable to create an effective disaster countermeasure plan. He pointed out that a robust nuclear power plant accident evacuation plan does not exist in the United Kingdom and it is impossible to ensure sufficient safety measures for residents in case of an accident. However, even Japanese evacuation standards and plans are not good enough according to Mr Large. Once serious nuclear accidents occur, exposure to radiation and other hazards is inevitable even with standards and plans in place…”

http://www.januk.org/english/meeting_2013reporte.html

May 3, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tokyo Almost As Irradiated As Fukushima

(Source) http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012/12/tokyo-almost-as-irradiated-as-fukushima.html 

Image source ; http://www.infiniteunknown.net/2011/11/04/insane-japan-radioactive-disaster-debris-arrives-in-tokyo-from-iwate-prefecture-to-be-crushed-and-burned-and-buried-in-the-landfill-in-tokyo-bay/

  • Tokyo getting 5 times more radioactive fallout than prefectures closer to Fukushima

Image source ; http://www.zhuxinquan.com/life/tokyo-radiation-level-so-far/

And many more reports:

*Tokyo Hit With Fukushima Radiation

*Radiation Expert: Huge Quantities of Radiation Are Still Being Released from Fukushima … And Radiation Levels In Some Parts of Tokyo Are Higher than In the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone
*Radioactive “Dirt” Hits Tokyo

Tokyo Soil – Blanketed With Fukushima Radiation – Would Be Considered “Radioactive Waste” In the United States

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012/03/tokyo-soil-hit-with-fukushima-radiation-would-be-considered-radioactive-waste-in-the-united-states.html

*Over 20 Radioactive Hotspots Found in Tokyo … Despite Government and Media Attempt to Cover Up Spread of Radiation

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2011/10/more-than-20-radioactive-hotspots-found-in-tokyo.html

*Tokyo Starts Burning Radioactive Waste from Other Areas … Tokyo Governor Tells Residents to “Shut Up” and Stop Complaining About It

May 3, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment