The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

Roundup of the week’s nuclear and climate news

a-cat-CANThe deck chairs at the Titanic Paris Climate Talks in December include a chair for EDF the giant French nuclear company, which is a sponsor of the conference.  Meanwhile in UK, the Thorium Nuclear lobby has got itself charity status.  The global nuclear lobby is working hard to win the world to its new, though yet non-existent, technologies. It is using 3 main lies:

LIE 1  “new nuclear solves the wastes problem”. For September and have focused on that particular lie. LIE 2. “Low dose ionising radiation is harmless, even good for you” – a focus  for October. LIE 3. “nuclear solves climate change” – the focus for November.

September 26 – International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons
Join the ‘Don’t Nuke the Climate’ Thunderclap!

CLIMATEPope Francis at White House urges ‘critical’ action on climate change, but is not facing up to role of population growth in climate change. California Governor Warns of Coming Climate Refugee Crisis.
JAPAN.Japan’s draconian new secrecy laws linked to Fukushima and nuclear radiation. Japan Crushes Resistanceto Restart Nuclear Power Plants. Cs-134/137 measured from Tokyo tap-water. The highest I-131 density of this year detected in 2 Fukushima sewage plants. Fisherman debunks radiation as cause of giant woffish -so does ecology expert Timothy Mousseau .
UK’s £24bn Hinkley Point nuclear project shunned by investors. Britain tries to wrap up Hinkley nuclear deal with China, with $3.1 billion bribe. Even pro nuclear ‘experts’ want to scrap Hinkley ( are they pushing for ‘small nuclear’?)
RUSSIA    to take ‘counter-steps’ if USA upgrades nuclear weapons in Europe.
GERMANY. public strongly supports renewables, not coal or nuclear.
FRANCE‘s EDF does a policy U-turn – now investing in renewables.
CANADA. Continuing legal battle over SNC-Lavalin, marketers of CANDU nuclear reactors
NORTH KOREA’nuclear belligerence highlights need for diplomacy and global disarmament treaty.
SOUTH AFRICA‘s govt keeping nuclear costs secret from the public.
BELGIUM Court upholds Belgium’s tax on nuclear power stations.
SWEDEN tightens rules on drones flying near nuclear stations.

September 25, 2015 Posted by | Christina's notes | 1 Comment

Japan’s draconian new secrecy laws linked to Fukushima and nuclear radiation

Abe NUCLEAR FASCISMFukushima Disaster Aftermath: Japanese Government Has Something to Hide. Sputnik News 24 Sept 15 Commenting on the aftermath of Fukushima disaster, US climate journalist Robert Hunziker suggests that the Japanese government has something to hide; “it must be really big,” the journalist notes, referring to the hard-hitting new secrecy law Tokyo has adopted.

 There is something sinister about the Japanese government’s optimistic claims that the notorious Fukushima Prefecture is largely safe for habitation, Los-Angeles based climate journalist Robert Hunziker notes, warning that scientific data published by third-party NGOs shows otherwise.

Continue reading

September 25, 2015 Posted by | Japan, politics, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

The British Government is spreading untruths about the price of renewable energy.

What does all this add up to? The government, its Treasury department, its Chancellor George Osborne and its energy department, DECC, are grossly and presumably knowingly misrepresenting the relative costs of renewable energy and nuclear power.

And it’s all part of plan to force upon us a new generation of hyper-expensive nuclear power plants that will cost energy users through the nose until 2060 and beyond, putting the country on a ‘back to the future’ path to the 1950s, while wiser nations reap the benefits of cheap, clean renewable energy.

They must be stopped. And shame upon them!

NUCLEAR-LIES1flag-UKNuclear Lies About Renewable Energy by OLIVER TICKELL There’s no doubt about it. The British Government is spreading untruths about the price of renewable energy.

Is it deliberate? One can only assume so owing to the consistency of the pattern and the equally consistent refusal to explain or correct its misleading statements.

The context is also significant: it’s always in the context of supporting nuclear power over renewable energy sources. Continue reading

September 25, 2015 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, UK | Leave a comment

UK’s £24bn Hinkley Point nuclear project shunned by investors

piggy-bank--nuke-sadflag-UKInvestors shun UK’s £24bn Hinkley Point nuclear project, , Christopher Adams  , 24 Sept 15 

Delays and cost overruns that have dogged two nuclear reactors being built in France and Finland have deterred investors from joining a £24bn project to build a plant at Hinkley Point.

French utility EDF is in advanced talks with two Chinese partners — China General Nuclear Corporation and China National Nuclear Corporation — over their final shares of construction spending and roles in the building of up to three nuclear plants in the UK. An agreement could be reached this year.
But Jean-Bernard Levy, EDF chief executive, told Les Echos, the French financial daily newspaper, that it had been unable to secure the support of other investors after persistent problems with the proposed European pressurised reactor design………

September 25, 2015 Posted by | business and costs, politics, UK | Leave a comment

Nobody except China wants to risk investing in Britain’s new £2bn Hinkley Point nuclear plant

scrutiny-on-costsflag-UKOnly China wants to invest in Britain’s new £2bn Hinkley Point nuclear plant because no one else thinks it will work, EDF admits Investors put off by problems facing nuclear reactors under construction in France and Finland Geert De Clercq  Wednesday 23 September 2015 Delays and cost overruns at two nuclear reactors under construction in France and Finland have made potential investors wary of joining a consortium led by France’s EDF for a similar project in Britain, EDF’s chief executive has admitted…….

September 25, 2015 Posted by | business and costs, politics, UK | Leave a comment

Nuclear boys argue about their nuclear toys

boys-with-toysFlag-USAUS-Russia Nuclear Weapons Standoff: Air Force Won’t Station New Atomic Bombs In Germany Until 2020

By  @Charress on September 24 2015 The United States will not station new nuclear weapons in Germany, according to a statement by a U.S. government official reported by the Russian news site Tass. Rumors had surfaced of a plan by the U.S. to introduce additional atomic bombs into Germany in an effort to further deter Russian hostility against Europe.

“The B61-12 won’t reach full production until FY20,” said Shelley Laver, deputy director of the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration public affairs department, who spoke with Tass Wednesday. “The articles implying deployment to Europe by the end of the calendar year would be inaccurate.”

   In response to the reports that surfaced Tuesday, Moscow threatened to respond to the U.S. plans bysending its own nuclear-capable Iskander ballistic missiles into Kaliningrad, a Russian-held enclave on the Baltic coast. The missiles would be capable of reaching almost any part of Europe.

The reports were based on an analysis of 2015 U.S. budget documents that said Air Force Tornado jet fighter bombers would be equipped with a new nuclear weapons system in the third quarter of this year.

The U.S. already has nuclear weapons inside Europe as part of a NATO-sharing program. While the countries involved — Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy and Turkey — are technically non-nuclear states, they store, maintain and provide the means to deliver the weapons on behalf of the U.S. military.

Hans Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists, said the German media was mistaken and actually meant that the nuclear project was in the second phase of a much longer project.

“All of these things have been in the books for years,” said Kristensen in the Tass report. “The [U.S.] Air Force has reported about the timelines for when these upgrades of the aircraft were going to be made and NNSA and many other agencies, of course, reported about the plans for the bomb itself.”

September 25, 2015 Posted by | USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Russia to take ‘counter-steps’ if USA upgrades nuclear weapons in Europe

Flag-USARussia threatens to take nuclear ‘countermeasures’ over reports U.S. plans to upgrade weapons in Europe, National Post, Roland Oliphant, Justin Huggler, Raf Sanchez, The Telegraph |September 24, 2015 
Russia has threatened to take “countermeasures” if the United States goes ahead with the deployment of a new type of nuclear weapon in Germany, raising fears of a return to a Cold War arms race in Europe.

The Kremlin said plans reported by German media for the U.S. to upgrade its nuclear weapons arsenal in the country would be “a serious step towards raising tension” in Europe.

“Unfortunately, in the case of these plans – and we can say with certainty that they are moving towards realization – this can lead to a violation of the strategic balance in Europe,” said Dmitry Peskov, Vladimir Putin’s spokesman.

“Therefore, of course, that would require Russia to take counter-steps and countermeasures to restore balance and parity,” he added. The deployment of U.S. nuclear weapons in Europe is subject to secrecy. But Washington is reportedly planning to replace 20 nuclear weapons deployed at Buchel airbase in western Germany with a more modern variant, according to ZDF television.

According to media reports, B61 bombs are to be replaced with B61-12s, more accurate and less destructive weapons which can be fired as missiles, as well as dropped from aircraft.

The Kremlin did not say what form the threatened countermeasures might take, but one source said a possible option would be the deployment of nuclear-capable Iskander missiles to Kaliningrad, Russia’s exclave on the Baltic Sea which borders Poland and Lithuania.

“With the new bombs the boundaries blur between tactical and strategic nuclear weapons,” Hans Kirstensen of the Nuclear Information Project in Washington told ZDF……..

September 25, 2015 Posted by | Russia, weapons and war | Leave a comment

German public strongly support renewables, not coal or nuclear

flag_germanyGerman support for renewables still high, low for nuclear and logo-Energiewendecoal  By  on 24 September 2015 Energy Transition

A recent survey conducted among the German public finds continuing support for the Energiewende. Furthermore, only a third said the cost was too high. Craig Morris says a closer look also reveals that people who already have systems close by are less likely to oppose them. The average German household currently pays 18 euros per month for the renewable energy surcharge. A survey conducted in August by TNS Emnid for renewable energy organization AEE finds that only 31 percent of the participants believe that is too much, compared to 57 percent who believe that amount is acceptable and six percent who think more needs to be paid. Overall, a whopping 93 percent of those surveyed said that further growth of renewables was “important” or “very important.”

The survey also included a question about the acceptability of specific electricity generation systems. While 68 percent support renewable energy systems in general, only seven percent like coal plants – and only four percent nuclear. Note that in all cases, acceptance increased when people already had experience living close to such plants.

Acceptance of solar power plants was the greatest at 77 percent, compared to only 59 percent for wind turbines. But notice the huge discrepancy: a far higher number (72 percent) of people who have experienced wind farms nearby support the technology.

In contrast, support for biogas units was the lowest at a mere 39 percent, rising only to 53 percent among those who already have experience or live close by to those units. This low level of support is one reason for why the government has clamped down on bioenergy in general; the other reason is cost.

Finally, the survey asked what people expect of the Energiewende. The top answer was “making the future safer for our children and grandchildren” at 77 percent, followed by “”protecting the climate” at 73 percent. In contrast, only 33 percent believe the energy transition will “lower costs for consumers in the long term.”

Questions about energy democracy – “citizens can take part in energy supply” and “more competition with power corporations” – revealed middling expectations at 57 and 50 percent, respectively. Note, however, that the question was not why people supported the Energiewende, but what outcome they expected it to produce.

Similar questions were asked in a survey from September 2013, which also found exactly 93 percent in support for the growth of renewables. Likewise, support for the various technologies has only shifted slightly, as have the expectations, which had the exact same order (with slightly different numbers) two years ago. In other words, over the past two years, support for the Energiewende has hardly changed.


September 25, 2015 Posted by | Germany, politics | Leave a comment

France’s EDF does a policy U-turn – now investing in renewables

renewables-not-nukesflag-franceShifting focus: Owner of world’s largest nuclear fleet looks to renewable energy, Fierce Energy September 24, 2015 By William Pentland EDF, the state-controlled electric utility company based in Paris, France, is pinning its hopes for growth on renewable energy investments, including investments in markets outside of Europe. “By 2030, we want to have a significant presence in three to five countries outside of Europe, notably in solar and wind,” said Jean-Bernard Levy, chief executive officer of Electricite de France SA (EDF), in an interview with the French financial daily newspaper,Les Echos.

EDF owns and operates the world’s largest fleet of nuclear reactors. Currently, 95 percent of the French utility’s generating assets are located in either France, Britain or Italy. Levy said EDF would ramp up investments in renewable energy in these markets.

“Our objective is to double our European and French renewables fleet by 2030 from 28 to more than 50 gigawatts,” Levy said.

This strategy departs markedly from the strategy articulated by Levy’s predecessor, Henri Proglio.

While speaking at the Eurelectric conference in June 2014, Poglio said that the European Union needed to assert greater “control” over the pace of renewable energy growth………

September 25, 2015 Posted by | business and costs, France | Leave a comment

Nuclear propaganda film “Pandora’s Promise” scrutinised again

The film’s claim that nuclear is cheaper than energy from clean, renewable sources is completely false.

The film minimizes the question of what to do with high-level nuclear waste.

The very reasons not to support nuclear power are ignored by the film. The risks, economic realities, waste disposal problems, regulatory issues, and environmental and health impacts from the complete nuclear fuel chain are not addressed in “Pandora’s Promise.” Anyone who is interested is these issues should continue to ask questions and seek answers outside industry propaganda.

Book-PandoraReportCoverDon’t believe the pro nuclear hype,—  Sarah Fields, Director, Uranium Watch,
24 Sept 15   
On Thursday, September 24, the Grand County Library and Utah Film Society will be showing the film, text nuclear hype“Pandora’s Promise,” at Star Hall, starting at 7 p.m. The film is a one-sided and factually challenged look at nuclear power as an answer to climate change. The film’s premise is that nuclear power will provide clean energy and help developing countries end poverty. This claim is presented in interviews with several former opponents of nuclear power who have had a change of heart, and with some nuclear scientists.There were no interviews with citizens, environmentalists, legal experts, or scientists who are currently involved with the many serious and complex issues related to the production of nuclear power in the U.S.

The film neglects to discuss the environmental impacts of the whole nuclear fuel chain, from uranium mining and milling to the disposal and long-term care of low- and high-level nuclear waste. As we know here in southeast Utah, uranium mining and milling is not carbon-free and impacts our land, air, water and public health. There are hundreds of abandoned uranium mines in Utah and nearby states that have yet to be remediated. Hundreds of uranium mine and mill workers died or continue to suffer severe health impacts from the production of uranium.

The film’s claim that nuclear is cheaper than energy from clean, renewable sources is completely false. Nuclear reactors cost billions of dollars to construct, taking 10 years or longer to license and bring online. Reactors under construction in the U.S. have construction delays and serious cost overruns, which are passed onto the ratepayers. The cost of reactors keeps going up and the cost of renewables keeps going down.

The film minimizes the question of what to do with high-level nuclear waste. For decades, that problem has been pushed back for future generations to deal with. The type of spent fuel casket that the proposed Yucca Mountain disposal site was designed for is no longer being developed. There is no approved casket for the storage of high-burn up fuel — the fuel used at most reactors today. The government and industry has no long-term solution for high-level nuclear waste, except for indefinite storage at reactor sites. If Yucca Mountain were approved, much of the spent fuel would be transported through Utah, including Grand County.

The proposed reactor near Green River is an example the realities of nuclear power development. The Blue Castle Project would require about 87 million gallons of water per day in a time of drought and reduced runoff. It would impact the recovery program for threatened and endangered fish species in the Green River. Thus far, the proponent of the reactor, Blue Castle Holdings, has only raised $19 million. It will take from $50 to $100 million to obtain an Early Site Permit from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and many millions more to obtain a construction and operation license. It will take billions to construct the reactor. Thus far, no utility has joined this project, so there is no place for the electricity to go and no outside funding.

The very reasons not to support nuclear power are ignored by the film. The risks, economic realities, waste disposal problems, regulatory issues, and environmental and health impacts from the complete nuclear fuel chain are not addressed in “Pandora’s Promise.” Anyone who is interested is these issues should continue to ask questions and seek answers outside industry propaganda.


September 25, 2015 Posted by | Resources -audiovicual, spinbuster | Leave a comment

North Korea’s nuclear belligerence highlights need for diplomacy and global disarmament treaty

The right lessons to take from North Korea’s nuclear belligerence are that nuclear weapons threaten the security of all nations, even those that possess them, and that nuclear double standards are a recipe for proliferation, not disarmament. Continuing to point nuclear weapons at North Korea while asking them not to point them back obviously won’t work.

For biological and chemical weapons, anti-personnel landmines and cluster munitions, a clear treaty prohibition paved the way for their progressive elimination. Establishing a clear moral, political and legal norm against these indiscriminate and inhumane weapons has drastically reduced their use and influenced even countries not signed up to the relevant treaty. Yet the nuclear-armed states show no intent of fulfilling their legally binding obligation to disarm.

Indeed, all are investing massively in modernising their nuclear arsenals. That is why states without the weapons need to take the lead and start negotiations that are open to all states but blockable by none, for a global treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons and provide for their verifiable elimination from the arsenals of all nations

Ruff,TilmanIf we can’t stop an impoverished nation like North Korea making nuclear weapons, our
tactics are clearly wrong
The Conversation,  Associate Professor, International Education and Learning Unit, Nossal Institute for Global Health, School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, 24 Sept 15  The timing of North Korea’s announcement last week that it has resumed “normal operation” of its Yongbyon nuclear reactor – along with a reaffirmation of its belligerent rhetoric against the United States – might be interpreted simply as a response to Chinese President Xi Jinping’s current US state visit.

But that is not to say that it shouldn’t be taken seriously. Continue reading

September 25, 2015 Posted by | North Korea, politics international, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Pressure on nuclear weapons States to speed up nuclear disarmament process

Austrian ambassador in Scotland: ‘We can speed up nuclear disarmament process’ Alexander Kmentt speaks of growing international action in opposition to weapons of mass destruction, Common Space, 24 Sept 15 

PRESSURE is building on nuclear weapons states to speed up their legal commitments to disarm their weapons of mass destruction, according to the Austrian ambassador for disarmament, arms control and non-proliferation.

Alexander Kmentt, speaking at the Scottish Parliament of a growing international movement to ban the weapons, explained to CommonSpace that non-nuclear nations are becoming impatient for change.

“There is a new awareness of a change in the humanitarian impact of the use of nuclear weapons. There is a need to consider security in a broader sense. Consider the threats and risks associated with nuclear weapons. For countries in Africa there is now a growing awareness of how the use of nuclear weapons would impact on issues such as harvests and food security.

“The same is true for issues surrounding health impacts and the environment. Even the countries that do have nuclear weapons concede that the use of nuclear weapons would have a disastrous impact. It’s necessary to talk about nuclear weapons in these broader terms.”

Kmentt was a lead organiser of the third International Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons, which took place in December 2014 with a record 158 states in attendance.

Over three quarters of the world’s states are now part of a process to eliminate nuclear weapons, and over 100 states have signed a statement led by the Austrian government in favour of abolition.

Increasingly, the UK Government and the other six nuclear powers are isolated within the field of international states and policy makers. ………

September 25, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Britain tries to wrap up Hinkley nuclear deal with China, with $3.1 billion bribe

text-my-money-2flag-UKIn Courting Chinese Companies, Britain to Help Fund Planned Nuclear Plant NYT, By STANLEY REED SEPT. 20, 2015 LONDON — The British government said on Monday that it would provide 2 billion pounds, or about $3.1 billion, in state aid for a nuclear power station planned for Hinkley Point in southwest England.

The announcement of financial support — which was made by George Osborne, the chancellor of the Exchequer, on a visit to China — appeared to be a confidence-building measure aimed at wrapping up a deal, years in gestation, to build Britain’s first nuclear plant since the mid-1990s.

“They are edging toward trying to sign a deal, but it is taking a long time,” said Antony Froggatt, a nuclear analyst at Chatham House, a London research organization.
The British government said that it expected EDF, the French state-controlled utility leading the project, to make a final decision later this year to go ahead with the plant. If EDF moves forward, it will be supported by two Chinese companies, China General Nuclear Corporation and China National Nuclear Corporation, the government said. Mr. Osborne has been courting Chinese companies to help finance the new Hinkley Point station, which will cost at least £16 billion…….

In trying to build nuclear plants, Britain is bucking the trend in the West. ……

The British government is not only offering financing to help with the construction but has guaranteed EDF a much higher price for the electricity it generates than current market rates. The government also says that it may increase financial support for the plant as the project progresses. Last year, the European Union approved Britain’s use of state aid to finance the plant……Still, Britain’s effort to build nuclear plants has proceeded at what seems a glacial pace. The Hinkley Point project is already several years behind its original schedule.

Centrica, a British utility, walked away from an option to take a 20 percent stake in Hinkley Point and another nuclear plant, citing frustration over delay and costs.

September 25, 2015 Posted by | politics, politics international, UK | Leave a comment

Pope Francis not facing up to role of population growth in climate change

while the scientist applauded the pope’s overall message on the environment, he said Francis had undermined his own cause by failing to acknowledge the need for birth control and reproductive choice

Book Population Bomb copyPope’s climate push is ‘raving nonsense’ without population control, says top US scientist, , Guardian , 24 Sept 15 
 Scientists applauded Pope Francis’s overall message on climate but criticised his  failure to acknowledge the need for birth control. 
Paul Ehrlich writes in Nature Climate Change that Francis is wrong to fight climate change without also addressing the strain from population growth on resources One of America’s leading scientists has dismissed as “raving nonsense” the pope’s call for action on climate change – so long as the leader of the world’s 1 billion Catholics rejects the need for population control.

In a commentary in the journal Nature Climate Change, Paul Ehrlich, a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, argues that Pope Francis is simply wrong in trying to fight climate change without also addressing the additional strain on global resources from population rise. “That’s raving nonsense,” Ehrlich told the Guardian. “He is right on some things but he is just dead wrong on that.”

The critique in “Society and the Pope’s encyclical”, part of a special package from scientists on the encyclical, marked a rare note of dissent from scientists and campaigners. Many hope that the pope will drive home his call to action on poverty and the environment in his speech to Congress on Thursday.

Ehrlich, in his Nature Climate Change commentary, accuses Francis of a dangerous flaw in his indictment of consumerism and its effects on the poor and the environment. The pope had fallen for the usual clerical “obsession” with contraception and abortion – when he could have instead broken new ground on the Catholic church’s approaches to women’s reproductive rights and family planning.

The broadside exposes some of the difficulties of embracing a figure such as the pope – for those on the left as well as the right.

Conservative allies of the pope, on issues such as same-sex marriage and abortion, have balked at his denunciation of capitalism and call to action on climate change.

Those thrilled by the pope’s intervention on climate change – and Ehrlich counts himself among them – were troubled by Francis’s refusal to countenance the need to limit population, the scientist said. “It is crystal clear. No one concerned with the state of the planet and the state of the global economy can avoid dealing with population. It is the elephant in the room,” he said.

Ehrlich became a household name in the US nearly 50 years ago for warning of a global catastrophe because of population growth – a scenario he later conceded did not entirely materialise.

But while the scientist applauded the pope’s overall message on the environment, he said Francis had undermined his own cause by failing to acknowledge the need for birth control and reproductive choice……….

September 25, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change | Leave a comment

Pope Franc is at White House urges ‘critical’ action on climate change

PopePope Francis urges ‘critical’ action on climate change, calls for a tolerant society at White House, ABC News, 24 Sept 15  Pope Francis has urged the United States to help tackle climate change at a “critical moment of history” and called on Americans to build a truly tolerant and inclusive society.

In a speech on the White House South Lawn, the Argentine pontiff lauded US president Barack Obama’s efforts to reduce air pollution.

“It seems clear to me also that climate change is a problem which can no longer be left to a future generation,” the Pope said at a welcoming ceremony for his first visit to the United States.

“When it comes to the care of our common home, we are living at a critical moment of history,”

The Pope also invoked America’s best known civil rights leader, the late Martin Luther King, to make his point on the environment…..

September 25, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, USA | Leave a comment