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Total elimination of nuclear weapons – protestors demand, outside White House

protest-Washington-15Protesters rally outside White House, demanding ‘total elimination’ of nuclear weapons  http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/local/wp/2015/01/31/protesters-rally-outside-white-house-demanding-total-elimination-of-nuclear-weapons/ By DeNeen L. Brown January 31 About 100 demonstrators, holding signs that said, “No $1 Trillion Nuclear Arsenal,” rallied outside the White House Saturday, calling on President Obama to halt plans to invest billions of dollars to expand and rebuild the country’s nuclear arsenal.

“The Obama administration is putting us on a path to spend one trillion dollars, overhauling our nuclear arsenal over the next three decades,” said John-Michael Donahue, a spokesman for Global Zero, an international movement demanding the elimination of all nuclear weapons. “President Obama should abandon his $1 trillion nuclear arsenal and get back on track to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons, Global Zero.”

Matt Brown, co-founder of Global Zero, told the crowd that Obama had once called nuclear weapons “the most dangerous legacy of the Cold War.”

Brown said the president had instead “slowed reductions” in the country’s nuclear arsenal.

“Now, he is preparing to launch a massive upgrade to the arsenal that will cost $1 trillion over the next three decades,” Brown  said. “That will lock us, our children and probably our grandchildren into a nuclear weapons future. He’s come a long way from seeking ‘the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons.’ We can’t let that happen.”

Joe Hill, an internationally known artist who specializes in three dimensional pavement art, created a four-story  missile design for the protest.

“Nuclear weapons present a grave humanitarian threat,” Hill said in a statement.  “When I was growing up in the ‘80s, these weapons were at the forefront of everyone’s mind and fiercely debated. But though the danger has grown, the scrutiny has faded. We seem to have accepted these barbaric weapons as a fact of life, a necessary evil. I feel this is a subject that urgently needs to be discussed anew.”

Saturday’s rally kicked off the “No $1 Trillion Nuclear Arsenal” national tour, which has planned stops in Raleigh, Atlanta, Nashville and San Francisco.

DeNeen L. Brown is an award-winning staff writer at The Washington Post who has covered night police, education, courts, politics and culture.

February 2, 2015 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

UK claims that Russian bomber carrying nuclear missiles flew across the channel

flag-UKflag_RussiaWorld War 3: Russian Bomber Intercepted, Tu-95 Carried Russia’s Nuclear Weapons Claims England Inquistr 1 Feb 15 Fears of World War 3 continue to rise, and when the RAF fighters scrambled to have a Russian bomber intercepted over the channel it was uncertain whether or not they actually carried Russia’s nuclear weapons. Now the British Ministry of Defense is claiming that Russian nuclear missiles were indeed on board the Tu-95 “Bear” bomber.

 In a related report by the Inquisitr, Vladimir Putin claims Russia will boast military superiority over the United States at least until 2020. The Russian military also recently claimed that Russia’s nuclear weapons were upgraded recently with new technology which supposedly makes U.S. missile defense system useless. Members of the U.S. Congress also claim that Putin has stationed Russian nuclear weapons in Ukraine already, and may even use Crimea for an invasion.

The sight of the two Russian bombers so close to British air space was yet another sign that Cold War 2 was upon us. During the confrontation, Tu-95 bombers and the RAF Typhoons came as close as 1,000 feet away from each other. They were so close that the British pilots could communicate with the Russian bomber with hand signals.

Sources within the British Ministry of Defense claims that one of the two Russian bombers intercepted carried at least one of Russia’s nuclear weapons designed to “seek and find” Trident submarines. Both Prime Minister David Cameron and Defense Secretary Michael Fallon were alerted after cockpit conversations confirmed the Russian bomber’s nuclear payload were intercepted by a Norwegian military listening post.

“We downloaded conversations from the crew of one plane who used a special word which meant the would-be attack was a training exercise,” said a senior RAF source according to Express. “They know that we can pick up their transmissions and it would only be of concern if the often used release weapon order was changed. We also knew from another source that one of the aircraft was carrying a nuclear weapon long before it came anywhere near UK airspace.”

Experts say the belief that the Russian bomber was carrying nuclear weapons is an example that Vladimir Putin is upping his game.

“This continual and increasing probing of NATO airspace by these nuclear bombers and fighter aircraft, tankers and electronic aircraft by Russian is a pattern of increased pressure by Russia designed to remind the West and NATO that they remain a large nuclear power, and a serious military power with reach,” said Justin Bronk of the Royal United Services Institute………

Fortunately, the Russian bomber was not on a mission to start World War 3, and Vladimir Putin would have been required to give a direct order in order to make the warhead live. The other Russian bomber was apparently acting as a “mothership” during the military exercise.  http://www.inquisitr.com/1804787/world-war-3-russian-bomber-intercepted-tu-95-carried-russias-nuclear-weapons-claims-england/#PzH5oQQ11saMITcH.99

 

February 2, 2015 Posted by | Russia, UK, weapons and war | Leave a comment

UK Tax-payers fleeced by the nuclear industry – Sellafield the perfect example

This is an extraordinary and detailed article. I regret that I have here just picked out significant parts and headings (in order to get across the main points) . This is a perfect example of how a government can be captured by vested corporate interests.  This process is certainly not new  – for Sellafield, for Britain, for the world. The author has carefully researched and detailed the way the government, Parliament, UK

fleecing-taxpayer-1“The use of cost reimbursement contracts for Sellafield Limited and its subcontractors means the financial risks are borne by the taxpayer.”

Sellafield – how the nuclear industry fleeced taxpayers, Ecologist, David
highly-recommendedLowry 19th January 2015  Last week the consortium holding a £22bn contract to clean up the Sellafield nuclear site was sacked, writes David Lowry.  But this is just the end of a long and scandalous tale of corporate
flag-UKprofit at taxpayers’ expense, and the active collusion of ministers and senior officials in fighting off Parliamentary scrutiny. Continue reading

February 2, 2015 Posted by | politics, Reference, UK | Leave a comment

If USA nuclear reactors have accidents in India – Indian tax-payers pay: US corporations scot-free!

fleecing-taxpayer-1flag-indiaGood News! US Corporations Won’t Have to Pay for Nuclear Disasters in India, FAIR, 

By   , 27 Jan 15   “……Not only is it a “breakthrough understanding,” it’s also going to be “freeing up” investment. In these word choices, USA Today is saying it wants you to know that this is good news.

But what is the news? Here’s how the paper’s Mandakini Gahlot summarizes the agreement:

Picking up from a stalled 2008 civil nuclear agreement between the two countries, the deal would allow US firms to invest in energy in India. It also resolves a dispute over US insistence on tracking fissile material it supplies to the country and over Indian liability provisions that have discouraged US firms from capitalizing on the agreement.”……

These corporations–who have the political backing of the US government–have succeeded in getting international conventions to agree that “no one other than operators can be held responsible” in the event of a nuclear catastrophe. The suppliers want assurances that these international conventions, and not Indian law, will be applied in the wake of such an event.

The “breakthrough” between Obama and Modi seems to be an agreement that the law will be “tweaked” to let US corporations off the hook in case of a devastating accident. For example, suppliers of nuclear equipment could be redefined as “contractors” and therefore not be liable under Indian law.

Of course, if USA Today explained that Obama had gotten the Indian prime minister to find a loophole that would allow US corporations to avoid having to compensate victims of nuclear disasters that they contributed to, that would be harder to present  as a “good news!” story. http://fair.org/blog/2015/01/27/good-news-us-corporations-wont-have-to-pay-for-nuclear-disasters-in-india/

February 2, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, India, politics international | Leave a comment

Majority of US Republicans support action on Climate Change

tea-party-solar-crackMost Republicans Say They Back Climate Action, Poll Finds, NYT  By CORAL DAVENPORT and  JAN. 30, 2015WASHINGTON — An overwhelming majority of the American public, including half of Republicans, support government action to curb global warming, according to a poll conducted by The New York Times, Stanford University and the nonpartisan environmental research group Resources for the Future.

In a finding that could have implications for the 2016 presidential campaign, the poll also found that two-thirds of Americans said they were more likely to vote for political candidates who campaign on fighting climate change. They were less likely to vote for candidates who questioned or denied the science that determined that humans caused global warming.
Among Republicans, 48 percent say they are more likely to vote for a candidate who supports fighting climate change, a result that Jon A. Krosnick, a professor of political science at Stanford University and an author of the survey, called “the most powerful finding” in the poll. Many Republican candidates question the science of climate change or do not publicly address the issue………

 67 percent of respondents, including 48 percent of Republicans and 72 percent of independents, said they were less likely to vote for a candidate who said that human-caused climate change is a hoax.

The results came as climate change was emerging as a source of debate in the coming presidential campaign.

In 2012, all the Republican presidential candidates but one — Jon M. Huntsman Jr. — questioned or denied the science that determined that humans caused global warming, and opposed policies to curb greenhouse gas emissions. But over the past year, President Obama has proposed aseries of Environmental Protection Agency regulations intended to reduce carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants, which Republicans in Congress have attacked as a “war on coal.”……..

And while the poll found that 74 percent of Americans said that the federal government should be doing a substantial amount to combat climate change, the support was greatest among Democrats and independents. Ninety-one percent of Democrats, 78 percent of independents and 51 percent of Republicans said the government should be fighting climate change…….

among those who support the Tea Party, 49 percent said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate who said “I’m not a scientist” or a variant……..http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/31/us/politics/most-americans-support-government-action-on-climate-change-poll-finds.html?ref=us&_r=1

February 2, 2015 Posted by | climate change, politics, USA | Leave a comment

Continuing melting of Fukushima nuclear fuel

Japan Gov’t Expert: Nuclear fuel continued melting long after injecting sea water into Fukushima reactors — Extended release time caused ‘massive’ radioactive fallout — Reactor heat ‘surged’ when coolant was added — Officials admit just 3% of coolant water pumped in to cool the molten core (VIDEO)

 http://enenews.com/govt-expert-fukushima-nuclear-fuel-kept-melting-long-after-coolant-injection-began-sea-water-caused-surgereactor-temperatures-temperatures-only-3-coolant-pumped-made-destination?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ENENews+%28Energy+News%29

February 2, 2015 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

India tests nuclear-capable missile that could reach China , even Europe

India tests nuclear-capable missile from mobile launcher,DW, 30 Jan 15 India has carried out the first launch of its Agni-V long-range missile from a mobile mount. The weapon, which can carry nuclear warheads, is capable of reaching China and even Europe.

India's-nuclear-deals

Saturday’s test-launch of the Agni-V ballistic missile was the first time that the weapon has been fired from a truck mount – called a “canister” – rather than a concrete launchpad, a spokesman for India’s Defense Research and Development Organization said.

The mobile launchpad will facilitate flexible deployment of the missile, which has a range of 5,000 kilometers (3,100 miles) – making it capable of reaching the Chinese mainland, or nearly all of western Europe.

“Successful test-firing of Agni-V from a canister makes the missile a prized asset for our forces,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Twitter.

The 17-meter (18.6-yard) weapon, which weighs 50 tons, was launched from the test range on Wheeler Island off the eastern state of Orissa.

It is the third time that the Agni-V missile, named after the Sanskrit word for “fire,” has been tested, having received its initial launch in April 2012 (pictured above).

Deterring ‘evil eyes’

The test comes as India, the largest importer of arms in the world, is involved in a defense upgrade to the tune of $100 billion (88.6 billion euros).

Modi has said he wants to increase India’s military power to the extent that no other country “dare cast an evil eye” on it.  His right-wing government has pushed on with long-delayed projects worth over $60 billion since taking power in elections in May. http://www.dw.de/india-tests-nuclear-capable-missile-from-mobile-launcher/a-18227324

February 2, 2015 Posted by | India, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Renewable energy a more practical option than nuclear, for Pakistan

renewables-not-nukesflag-pakistanGenerating energy from alternative resources more feasible than nuclear plants: speakers, Pakistan Today, 1 Feb 2015  Physicists, architects, engineers, economists and civil society activists on Sunday emphasized the need to adopt alternative energy sources like solar and wind instead of nuclear power plants for generation of electricity in Pakistan as it is not cheaper as claimed by the Atomic Energy Commission of Pakistan.

Instead of providing nuclear reactors, China should be asked to provide money for power generation through solar and wind, said the experts while speaking at a workshop on ‘proposed karachi nuclear power plants: preparing for the environmental impact assessment and public hearing’ jointly organised by the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER) and the Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum (PFF) at a local hotel.

“The citizens of Karachi should take part in a large number in the expected public hearing for the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) by the government after the orders by Sindh High Court,” said Dr AH Nayyar, Professor of Physics at Quaid-e-AzamUniversityIslamabad. It is for the first time that an EIA and public hearing is being held for a nuclear power plant.

They stressed the need to sensitise the local communities especially fishermen about dangers of radiations which may be great threat to their lives.

Dr Nayyar said the present government was setting up two nuclear power plants, K2 and K3, along Karachi coast without acquiring the mandatory EIA report. The SHC order has asked the government to arrange a public hearing for the EIA. But for that the EIA document should be made available for the general public much before the actual hearing so they can study and understand.

He pointed out that some concerned citizens had gone to the court against the nuclear power plants and during the hearing, the PAEC had confessed that earlier it had done the EIA process in a “wrong way,” without following the legal process. It had acquired the EIA from Sindh Environmental Protection Agency without holding public hearing……………….http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2015/02/01/city/karachi/generating-energy-from-alternative-resources-more-feasible-than-nuclear-plants-speakers/

February 2, 2015 Posted by | Pakistan, politics | Leave a comment

Hind al Fayez -charismatic young parliamentarian challenges Jordan’s nuclear ambitions

Al-Fayez,-HindAmong other concerns, Al Fayez questions how a state with such little water will be able to cool a reactor situated more than 200 miles from the shoreline, and whether Jordan has sufficient human capital (i.e., enough nuclear physicists) to safely operate the facilities. She has also expressed dismay with the $10 billion price tag, a sum roughly equivalent to Jordan’s total 2013 annual budget

The Middle East’s Next Nuclear Power? It may not be the one you’re thinking about. Politico, By DAVID SCHENKER January 28, 2015 “…….even as Western attention has focused all around Jordan—and especially on the nuclear negotiations with Iran—in a little-noticed series of moves, the Kingdom’s been edging closer to going nuclear itself. In fact, the Kingdom of Jordan, Washington’s most reliable Arab partner, is the latest Middle Eastern state considering nuclear energy that is refusing to relinquish its right to enrich.

To prevent proliferation, the US has long held that Middle Eastern states seeking nuclear energy must forego the right to enrich nuclear material. The principle of no-enrichment has underpinned the so-called “gold standard” of US-bilateral nuclear agreements……..

—in its December 2009 agreement with the US, the United Arab Emirates acquiesced to forego enrichment and reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel……….Over the past four years, the Kingdom has increasingly focused on nuclear energy, in particular the construction of two 1000-megawatt power plants…….Amman’s proposed nuclear facilities have met with opposition both at home and abroad. Washington’s stated opposition to the program revolves around enrichment. Jordan’s resolve to maintain this right has stymied efforts to reach a “123 agreement” governing US international nuclear cooperation……….

Israel, too, has taken issue with Jordan’s nuclear ambitions, primarily due to concerns about safety. Continue reading

February 2, 2015 Posted by | Jordan, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Legal appeal against Ontario Power Generation’s proposal to rebuild four aging nuclear reactors

justiceflag-canadaEnvironmental groups launch appeal of Darlington nuclear rebuild project http://www.ecojustice.ca/media-centre/press-releases/environmental-groups-launch-appeal-of-darlington-nuclear-rebuild-project JAN 28, 2015  TORONTO — Environmental groups are appealing a Federal Court decision that refused to overturn an environmental assessment of Ontario Power Generation’s proposal to rebuild four aging nuclear reactors at the Darlington power plant.

The appeal has been launched by Greenpeace, Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA), Lake Ontario Waterkeeper and Northwatch, which argue that the environmental assessment had major deficiencies and did not satisfy the requirements of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act.

“In our view, the environmental assessment did not properly address the project’s potential impacts on fisheries, the risks posed by nuclear waste storage and management, nor the environmental effects of a reactor accident causing large radioactive releases into nearby communities,” said Shawn-Patrick Stensil, an energy analyst with Greenpeace. “These risks must be fully considered in order to make an informed decision whether this project should move forward.”

Lawyers from Ecojustice and CELA filed the appeal on behalf of the four groups in late December. The decision under appeal was released in late November.

“Our clients are asking the Court of Appeal to reverse the lower court ruling, and to stop this project from proceeding until the environmental assessment is completed in compliance with the Act,” said Kaitlyn Mitchell, Ecojustice staff lawyer. “When it comes to large-scale projects like the proposed rebuild, it’s critical that the public — and federal decision-makers — have a proper understanding of what risks it may pose to human health and the environment, and whether such risks can be fully mitigated or avoided.”

“Lake Ontario is a vital part of daily life for nine million people. It can and should be protected from the impacts and risks posed by operating rebuilt reactors at the Darlington site. That is what a fulsome environmental assessment promises,” said Mark Mattson of Lake Ontario Waterkeeper.In a separate ruling issued in May 2014, the Federal Court set aside an OPG licence to undertake site preparation to build new nuclear reactors at the Darlington location. In this judgment, the Court agreed with Greenpeace, CELA, Lake Ontario Waterkeeper and Northwatch that the environmental assessment for the new build project did not meet the requirements of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act because it failed to reasonably consider three key issues: hazardous chemical emissions; management of nuclear waste; and the impacts of a severe multi-reactor accident leading to large off-site releases of radioactive substances. This judgment has since been appealed by Ontario Power Generation, Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, and the Attorney General of Canada.

For more information, please contact: Continue reading

February 2, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Consumer groups in Malaysia condemn government that is “hell-bent’ on nuclear power

Protest-No!flag-MalaysiaPutrajaya ‘hell-bent’ on nuclear plant despite public concerns, says consumer group Malaysian Insider,  1 February 2015 Plans to build a nuclear plant in Malaysia are afoot, warned a consumer group, and said Putrajaya was misleading the public into thinking that it will consult the people on the use of nuclear energy when it had already decided to proceed with a bill to be table in Parliament this year.

Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) president SM Mohamed Idris said the government was “hell-bent” on introducing nuclear power in the country’s energy mix and highlighted statements made by energy officials over the past year and recently which indicated that Malaysia was intent on adopting nuclear energy.

As proof, he cited the setting up of the Malaysian Nuclear Power Corporation (MNPC) in January 2011, and the listing of nuclear energy as an entry point project in the Economic Transformation Programme in 2010.

“The government is hell-bent on introducing nuclear energy in the country’s energy mix.

“It is disingenuous of the government to continue misleading the public with its standard response line that a decision has yet to be made and the government is still exploring the option to go nuclear,” he said in a statement today.

Mohamed also said Putrajaya had announced its intention to table the Atomic Energy Regulatory Bill in August last year, and that the announcement was welcomed by MNPC chief executive officer, Dr Mohd Zamzam Jaafar, who said MNPC was hopeful that the bill would be approved by Parliament this year.

Malaysia, a nett oil exporter, has, in the past, floated the idea of adding nuclear power to its energy mix to meet long-term fuel needs, but such announcements were always greeted with public disapproval.

In 2010, the minister of energy, green technology and water then, Tan Sri Peter Chin, announced plans to build a nuclear plant that would start operations in 2021.

In July last year, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Mah Siew Keong, who oversees the MNPC, had also said that feasibility studies would be conducted on building nuclear plants as a sustainable energy option for Malaysia.

There is no indication yet of where the proposed nuclear plant would be built, but remote locations close to water sources are required in line with international rules. This would leave a limited number of states, such as Pahang, Johor and Terengganu, as possible locations……….

CAP also called upon the public to denounce the soon-to-be completed Malaysian Nuclear Power Infrastructure Development Plan as an “undemocratic and authoritarian” plan. – February 1, 2015. – See more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/putrajaya-hell-bent-on-nuclear-plant-says-consumer-group#sthash.2irEgUtq.dpuf

February 2, 2015 Posted by | Malaysia, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Exelon Nuclear wants tax-payer to bail out its unprofitable Clinton Power Station, among others

fleecing-taxpayer-1Illinois nuclear shutdown threatened Herald Review CLINTON 1 Feb 15, – Stopping a threatened economic meltdown of the Illinois nuclear power industry is now in the hands of state lawmakers.

Chicago-based Exelon Nuclear has said it will be forced to close its Clinton Power Station, along with shuttering similar plants in Ogle County and Rock Island, if the state doesn’t come up with policy changes to make the stations more profitable……..

Bill Stoermer, a senior site communications manager based at Exelon’s Quad Cities Generating Station, said the nuclear clock is ticking……

February 2, 2015 Posted by | business and costs, politics, USA | Leave a comment

Civil Society in Pakistan challenges government, questioning nuclear power plans

flag-pakistanAlternative energy: Civil activists prepare for public hearing on nuclear power plants, Express Tribune, By Our Correspondent February 1, 2015 KARACHI:  Despite the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission’s (PAEC) claims that nuclear power is the ‘most cost efficient’ energy source for the developing country, civil society activists want it to be replaced with alternative sources of energy because they say the Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, Fukushima and Bhopal disasters are not forgotten.

In view of the PAEC’s public hearing scheduled for March, on the proposed nuclear sites near Karachi, the civil society is bracing itself to meet it fully prepared and question the power project’s significance, benefits, hazards and possible alternatives.

“It is suspected that the K-2 and K-3 Chinese-manufactured nuclear power plants are being installed here on an experimental basis,” said physicist Abdul Hameed Nayyar, speaking to a workshop on Sunday, organised by the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (Piler). “No such power plant is operating anywhere in the world.”

He asserted that according to international standards, a 30-kilometer-radius around nuclear plants was vulnerable. The proposed nuclear sites were too close to Karachi and put the lives of millions of people at risk, he said.

Nayyar claimed that many regulations were being neglected in conducting the Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA). “PAEC wrongfully obtained certificates for the nuclear plants from the Sindh Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) without seeking public consent,” he said. “The SEPA was bound by law to incorporate and consider public comments into the procedure before issuing such a certificate to any industry.”

Another activist, Roland deSouza, added that in Pakistan, the institutions supposed to assess the environmental impact of growing industrialisation were very poor. “The SEPA is understaffed, incompetent and influenced by political and bureaucratic circles,” he said, adding that the prosperity of a country depended on the conservation of its environment.

He narrated stories of the DHA Cogen project and constructions near the Abdullah Shah Ghazi’s shrine, claiming that even in those cases, the proper course of action for assessment were not followed until the civil society took the matter to court.

On the PAEC’s claim that radiations caused by the nuclear plants would not be harmful, he said, that no independent verification could be made as yet. Concluding his presentation, he questioned why we didn’t import solar energy projects from China, since it was the largest producer of this less hazardous and modern source of energy.

The nine-hour-long programme at the Regent Plaza was divided into sessions to give attendees an understanding of nuclear power projects and the significance of the forthcoming formal public hearing.

The speakers focused on the issues of how the PAEC would transport radioactive material, what measures they would take in case of a mishap and how a reactor would be decommissioned after the completion of its life cycle……….http://tribune.com.pk/story/831269/alternative-energy-civil-activists-prepare-for-public-hearing-on-nuclear-power-plants/

February 2, 2015 Posted by | Pakistan, politics | Leave a comment