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Up to 100% of No. 2 reactor fuel may have melted

First it was cold shutdown, then it became meltdown, what if most of it had been expelled in the skies, and if so how long it will take for them to finally admit it to the world…

A group of researchers says it is highly likely that 70 to 100 percent of fuel has melted at one of the damaged reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The group includes researchers from Nagoya University. It has been probing the plant’s No. 2 reactor since April of last year, using a device that uses elementary particles called muons to see into its interior.

The researchers say the results of their study show few signs of nuclear fuel at the reactor core, in contrast to the No. 5 reactor where fuel was clearly visible at its core.

This led them to believe that 70 to 100 percent of fuel at the reactor has likely melted.

The researchers say further analyses are needed to determine whether molten fuel penetrated the reactor and fell down.

The No.2 reactor is said to have released large amounts of radioactive substances following the March 2011 accident.

Tokyo Electric Power Company, the plant’s operator, has estimated that part of nuclear fuel at the reactor remains at its core.

The locations of nuclear fuel will have a significant impact on the process to remove it from the damaged reactors, the most difficult step of the decommissioning work.

The Japanese government and TEPCO plan to scan the No. 2 reactor once again using a different device.

They are also preparing to use robots around the reactor.

The group will announce the results of its study at a meeting of the Physical Society of Japan in Osaka on Saturday.

Source : NHK

http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/news/nuclear.html

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September 26, 2015 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

Fukushima reactor could have suffered total meltdown – report

Fukushima’s reactor No.2 could have suffered a complete meltdown according to Japanese researchers. They have been monitoring the Daiichi nuclear power plant since April, but say they have found few signs of nuclear fuel at the reactor’s core.

The scientists from Nagoya University had been using a device that uses elementary particles, which are called muons. These are used to give a better picture of the inside of the reactor as the levels of radioactivity at the core mean it is impossible for any human to go anywhere near it.

However, the results have not been promising. The study shows very few signs of any nuclear fuel in reactor No. 2. This is in sharp contrast to reactor No.5, where the fuel is clearly visible at the core, the Japanese broadcaster NHK reports.

The team believes that 70 to 100 percent of the fuel has melted, though they did add that further research was needed to see whether any fuel had managed to penetrate the reactor

A report in May by the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), which is the plant’s operator, said that a failure in reactor No.2’s pressure relief systems was one of the causes of the disaster. The team used a robot, which ventured into the building and measured radiation levels at various places, while also studying how much leakage had occurred from the control systems.

TEPCO has used 16 robots to explore the crippled plant to date, from military models to radiation-resistant multi-segmented snake-like devices that can fit through a small pipe.

However, even the toughest models are having trouble weathering the deadly radiation levels: as one robot sent into reactor No.1 broke down three hours into its planned 10-hour foray.

Despite TEPCO’s best efforts, the company has been accused of a number of mishaps and a lack of proper contingency measures to deal with the cleanup operation, after the power plant suffered a meltdown, following an earthquake and subsequent tsunami in 2011.

Recent flooding caused by Tropical Typhoon Etau swept 82 bags, believed to contain contaminated materials that had been collected from the crippled site, out to sea.

“On September 9th and 11th, due to typhoon no.18 (Etau), heavy rain caused Fukushima Daiichi K drainage rainwater to overflow to the sea,” TEPCO said in a statement, adding that the samples taken “show safe, low levels” of radiation.

“From the sampling result of the 9th, TEPCO concluded that slightly tainted rainwater had overflowed to the sea; however, the new sampling measurement results show no impact to the ocean,” it continued.

A recent study by the University of Southern California said the Fukushima disaster could have been prevented. One of the main faults cited was the decision to install critical backup generators in low-lying areas, as this was the first place the 2011 tsunami would strike, following the massive earthquake.

LISTEN MORE:https://soundcloud.com/rttv/fukushima-research

Source: RT

http://www.rt.com/news/316593-fukushima-reactor-meltdown-study/

September 26, 2015 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

Fukushima dairy farmers to restart shipments

FUKUSHIMA – Dairy farmers who were forced to suspend business following the 2011 nuclear accident at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 power plant plan to restart milk shipments as early as this year, with a new large-scale stock farm completed in the city of Fukushima on Friday.

Fully supported by the government and the prefectural dairy cooperative association, the stock farm, with 580 cows, is expected to become a foothold for rebuilding the prefecture’s dairy industry, hit hard by business closures and radiation-related rumors.

The farm is operated by a company established jointly by five dairy farmers from Minamisoma, Namie and Iitate. Kazumasa Tanaka, 44, from Iitate, has been appointed president of the company.

The company aims to produce 5,000 tons of raw milk annually under a computer-based control system on the 3.6-hectare (8.9-acre) farm.

“I have chosen to do this because of a sense of responsibility for the rebuilding of the dairy industry in Fukushima,” Tanaka said at a completion ceremony. “It will be the happiest thing to cheer up our peers by our stock farm getting on a growth path.”

Following the triple meltdown at the nuclear plant triggered by the massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011, 76 dairy farmers had to evacuate and suspend their operations. Among them, only 13 farmers have restarted their businesses.

In the prefecture, annual production of raw milk remains sluggish at around 80,000 tons, down 20 percent from before the disaster.

The new stock farm was developed and is owned by the prefectural dairy cooperative, which is subsidized by the central and prefectural governments.

Source: Japan Times

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2015/09/26/national/fukushima-dairy-farmers-to-restart-shipments/#.VgaInyuFSM-

September 26, 2015 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

TEPCO rejected requests for anti-tsunami steps before nuclear crisis

Tokyo Electric Power Co turned down requests in 2009 by the nuclear safety agency to consider concrete steps against tsunami waves at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, which suffered a tsunami-triggered disaster two years later, government documents showed Friday.

“Do you think you can stop the reactors?” a TEPCO official was quoted as telling Shigeki Nagura of the now-defunct Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, who was then assigned to review the plant’s safety, in response to one of his requests.

The detailed exchanges between the plant operator and regulator came to light through the latest disclosure of government records on its investigation into the nuclear crisis, adding to evidence that TEPCO failed to take proper safety steps ahead of the world’s worst nuclear accident since the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.

According to records of Nagura’s accounts, Nagura heard TEPCO’s explanations of its tsunami estimates at the agency office in Tokyo in August and September 2009 as it was becoming clear that the coastal areas of Fukushima and Miyagi prefectures were hit by massive tsunami in an 869 earthquake.

TEPCO said the height of waves was estimated to be around 8 meters above sea level and will not reach the plant site located at a height of 10 meters, they show.

But Nagura said he remembered thinking pumps with key cooling functions, which are located on the ground at a height of 4 meters, “will not make it” and told TEPCO, “If this is the outcome, you better consider concrete responses.”

In refusing to immediately act, TEPCO said it would wait for related studies to be carried out by the academic society of civil engineers, which it had requested to be done by March 2012.

Nagura also proposed placing the pumps inside buildings to protect them from being exposed to water, but a TEPCO official told him, “Our company cannot make a decision without seeing the results of the (studies by the) society of civil engineers.”

Then another TEPCO official told Nagura, “Do you think you can stop the reactors?” according to the government documents.

Nagura recalled in the documents, “I wondered why I had to be told such a thing.” But he also admitted that, after all, he only encouraged TEPCO to “consider” tsunami countermeasures and did not request that it “take” specific measures.

The Fukushima crisis has revealed how Japan, which had boasted of possessing the world’s safest nuclear power plants, was ill-prepared against a severe nuclear accident. Three reactors suffered core meltdowns after they lost their key cooling functions amid a loss of all electrical power following a huge earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

The government-appointed nuclear accident investigation panel has already issued a final report, and the government is now gradually disclosing the records of hearings conducted to people involved.

Source: Japan Today

http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/tepco-rejected-requests-for-anti-tsunami-steps-before-nuclear-crisis

September 26, 2015 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

Still 0.88 MBq/km2 of Cs-134/137 falls in Tokyo monthly

Still-0.88-MBqkm2-of-Cs-134137-falls-in-Tokyo-monthly-800x500_c

According to NRA (Nuclear Regulation Authority), Tokyo still has fallout from Fukushima nuclear plant.

From their report released on 8/31/2015, 0.88 MBq/km2 of Cs-134/137 falls onto Tokyo this July. The sampling location was Shinjuku.

The comparable data on Fukushima prefecture is not listed on the same report for some reason.

However the reading of Tokyo includes Cesium-134 at the significant level to prove this is from Fukushima plant.

In Miyagi prefecture, where is in the North of Fukushima prefecture, the fallout level is 0.55 MBq/km2. The fallout density in Tokyo is higher than Miyagi prefecture.

Other nuclide density is not reported.

http://radioactivity.nsr.go.jp/en/contents/11000/10193/24/195_20150831.pdf

Source: Fukushima Diary

http://fukushima-diary.com/2015/09/still-0-88-mbqkm2-of-cs-134137-falls-in-tokyo-monthly/

September 26, 2015 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

‘Japanese govt creates illusion of normality at Fukushima’

Japanese authorities made a troubling decision to let people to return to their houses in the zone of the Fukushima disaster as there is still much radioactive contamination in the region, Kevin Kamps of Beyond Nuclear told RT.

RT: Would you approve of the decision of the Japanese authorities to let people return to their houses in the zone of the Fukushima disaster?

Kevin Kamps: It is a very troubling decision, because there is radioactive contamination still throughout the countryside. In fact they just announced this time to move back to Naraha under threat of cutting people off from their compensation payments from Tokyo Electric Power Company [TEPCO]. Ironically, just days later, Typhoon Etau which had with it record breaking floods redistributed the radioactivity. Not only did bags of radioactive waste wash out the sea and down rivers, but the entire landscape- areas that had not been decontaminated – that contamination then floated with the water down mountain sides, downhill into areas that had been contaminated like Naraha, but also into areas that had not been contaminated before. So this radioactivity, as we saw, as we still see with the Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe – the radioactivity from Fukushima is moving in the environment. So it is a very troubling decision by the Japanese government to try to create the illusion of normality when there is so much radioactive contamination still in the environment.

 

RT: How long-lasting would the effect of the disaster be?

KK: It depends on the radioactive poison that you’re speaking about specifically. So, for example, radioactive Cesium-137 has a half-life of 30 years. You have to multiply it by 10 or 20 to get the hazardous persistence. So that is 300 to 600 years of hazard with radioactive Cesium-137. Strontium-90 is about the same – 300 to 600 years of radioactive hazard. And then you have radioactive poisons that are deadly virtually forever more into the future. For example, Plutonium-239 a half-life of 24,000 years – that is a radioactive hazard of 240,000 if not 480,000 years into the future.

RT: How dangerous is the area right now?

KK: Unfortunately we don’t have much information yet after these record breaking floods just last week, which in a very big way has moved radioactivity to new places in the environment, or has re-contaminated places previously decontaminated supposedly. So there is so much that we don’t know. Certainly there have to be very careful steps taken to measure the radioactivity in the environment. Any pronouncements by local mayors or even the Japanese government that they are only detecting so much radioactivity one meter above the ground – it misses the point in a very big way. Radioactive cesium, strontium, tritium, and other radioactive poisons can enter the food supply, and people can eat the radioactivity or drink it in their drinking water. Very careful measures to guard against the contamination of the food supply and the drinking water supply have to be taken. And I don’t know if that is happening in all places right now.

 

RT: There are claims that TEPCO is still concealing some important information about the Fukushima tragedy. Would you say that this could be true?

KK: Absolutely, TEPCO has been caught so many times even before this catastrophe began, but certainly after the catastrophe. Just to give one example: this past February, 2015 Tokyo Electric finally announced, let the public know, that every time it rained at the site- and they had some major typhoons hit that site in the last four and a half years – the radioactivity levels in the ditches went up very significantly. Very high level radioactive water was flowing down these ditches. It turned out that there was a very badly contaminated spot on top of the Unit 2 reactor building, which suffered very large scale radioactivity releases during the catastrophe. They were simply letting this water flow down the ditches and into the ocean. They kept that quiet not for days, or for weeks, or for months, but for years. Unfortunately, TEPCO controls a lot of the information coming out of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Station. Of course it would be in their interest to try to keep things quiet that are bad for their public relations. Fortunately, this truth finally came out. But you have to wonder – how many more things are they hiding.

‘Disaster by design’

The nuclear plant was doomed from the very beginning for a number of reasons, including TEPCO’s underestimation of the possibility of a tsunami in the area, says Costas Synolakis of the Tsunami Research Center, University of Southern California.
There were two major failures of TEPCO which eventually led to the disaster, he told RT.

“First of all, it starts back when the plant was built in the 1960’s. If you can believe it – there was a coastal cliff at that location. They took it down (it was 30 meters high) to minus 4 meters, so that… it would be easier to put the foundation for the nuclear power plant plus also to save on cost. Obviously back in the 1960’s they didn’t think about tsunamis even though tsunamis happened in Japan all the time…So number two – they didn’t consider the historic reports [about tsunamis],” he said.

“TEPCO had clear chances all along the way; they were warned by Japanese seismologists and Japanese scientists that there was evidence of big tsunamis in the area… What is very serious, from my point of view, is the rationalizations that TEPCO tried to do in the beginning. At one point they were writing in one report that their analysis was conservative. Conservative means that they had overestimated the tsunami – in fact they had underestimated the tsunami. A very famous social scientist in the US – his name is Dennis Mileti, would call this ‘disaster by design’, meaning that it was just there waiting to happen.”

LISTEN MORE:https://soundcloud.com/rttv/fukushima-research

Source: RT

http://www.rt.com/op-edge/316311-fukushima-nuclear-disaster-japan/

September 26, 2015 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

TEPCO to sign cooperation pact with France’s CEA

NHK has learned that the operator of the crippled nuclear plant in Fukushima plans to sign an agreement with a French organization to obtain the necessary technology to decommission the facilities.

Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, will initially focus on decontaminating the areas around the reactor containment vessels.

The removal of molten nuclear fuel will be the toughest challenge in the decontamination process because of the extremely high radiation levels.

TEPCO plans to obtain technical knowhow from the Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission, or CEA, which is funded by the French government. The French organization has expertise in dismantling aged nuclear reactors and fuel-reprocessing facilities.
Sources say that under the agreement, the CEA will help TEPCO to develop remote-controlled robots that can withstand high radiation levels.

The CEA will also help with training workers and TEPCO will provide data for the decommissioning process.

This will be TEPCO’s second agreement with a foreign organization. Last year, it signed a pact with a British company to address the buildup of contaminated water. 

Source: NHK 

http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/news/20150923_08.html

September 26, 2015 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

International Atomic Energy Agency’s Fukushima Report for the benefit of the nuclear industry

spin-global.nukeInternational Atomic Energy Agency’s Fukushima Report puts the interests of the nuclear industry first http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/news/Blogs/nuclear-reaction/IAEA-Fukushima-Daiichi-accident-report/blog/54198/?__surl__=Ig26R&__ots__=1443134068370&__step__=1  t by Justin McKeating – 24 September, 2015

The report draws conclusions when it should be highlighting major uncertainties and a lack of data surrounding the Fukushima disaster. It downplays the ongoing environmental and health effects of the disaster and misrepresents the current radiological crisis in the Fukushima region.

It’s clear that the IAEA is putting the interests of the nuclear industry before those of the disaster’s many victims. Its report does not accurately reflect the utter failure of the nuclear industry, and most nuclear regulators globally, to learn and implement the lessons of the Fukushima disaster. Not only that, it glosses over the seriously flawed nature of nuclear safety regulation in Japan right now.

And so Greenpeace Japan, together with Japanese civil society organisations, has sent a letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Yukiya Amano, challenging the conclusions of the IAEA’s Fukushima report as inadequate and flawed.

The IAEA says no discernible health consequences are expected as a result of the Fukushima disaster. This, while it admits uncertainties about both radiation exposure and its long-term effects.  The recently released IAEA Fukushima Daiichi Accident Report on Japan’s on-going nuclear disaster in the wake of the 2011 triple reactor core meltdowns and catastrophic containment building failure reads more like nuclear industry propaganda than the so-called authoritative and balanced scientific assessment the agency attempts to claim it is.The truth is that nobody knows how much radiation citizens were exposed to in the immediate days following the disaster. If the IAEA can’t give accurate figures about radiation exposure, how can it say there won’t be any consequences? This is political spin and PR, not science. 

Not only that, but the report supports the Japanese government’s agenda to make it appear that things can return to normal after a nuclear disaster.

Why else would the IAEA seek to justify Japanese government policy of lifting evacuation orders in increasingly contaminated areas in Fukushima? This strips returning evacuees of much needed and deserved compensation and may force many to return to areas where radiation levels remain dangerously high.

This is all part of the propaganda push to overcome huge public opposition in Japan to restarting Japan’s 42 shutdown nuclear reactors. It’s about normalising the Fukushima disaster. There is nothing normal about the exposure rates that former Fukushima citizens are being asked to return to.

Only a truly independent international commission that can investigate the causes, consequences, and implications of the accident can provide the Japanese people and the wider world with the unbiased information and accountability they need.

The nuclear industry will continue putting profit before people and safety – that’s what it does. But the IAEA should begin protecting people from the nuclear industry, not acting as its PR company. Justice demands it.

September 26, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Islamic State might get hold of a nuclear weapon

Atomic-Bomb-SmIS may get hold of nuclear weapon http://english.pravda.ru/news/world/25-09-2015/132133-isis-0/ – Polish web portal Interia analyzed probability of the Islamic State terrorists’ getting hold of nuclear weapons, having surveyed a number of experts.

German reporter Juergen Todenhoefer, who used to live 10 days under the Islamic fundemantalists in Mosul, believes it is unlikely.

However, other experts estimated the probable occurrence of a “dirty” bomb in hands of Islamists not so univocally. There are three options of getting nuclear weapon by the Islamic State, these are: purchase abroad, assistance of staff, that guards nuclear sites, or an attack (including a cyber one) against a Nuclear Power Plant.

Yukiya Amano, Director of the International Atomic Energy Agency called to stay alert. There is evidence that terrorists try their best to get access to nuclear weapons, or to data on the creation of a “dirty bomb”. IAEA has registered about 2,800 various incidents related to inadequate control over radioactive materials.

According to Aleksey Gorbatov, former deputy chairman of the Russian committee of defence, Pakistan or North Korea may sell terrorists an atomic charge. Beside that, there is a possibility to buy components for a “dirty bomb”, as they are used in medicine and at industrial facilities.

By the way, the US presidential candidate Donald Trump has recently called to attack the IS with a nuclear strike, despite its calling lives of civilians. Trump is going to strike the Syrian city of Al-Raqqah with a nuclear attack, in case he becomes a President.

Pravda.Ru reported that the IS leaders claimed about their intentions to make everything possible to obtain nuclear weapons. Terrorists possess huge funds after selling oil and intent to purchase chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons. There have already been cases of chemical weapons employment in Syria by the “opposition”, which tried to perform an act of provocation against Bashar al-Assad.
: http://english.pravda.ru/news/world/25-09-2015/132133-isis-0/#sthash.p0PoEm7E.dpuf-

September 26, 2015 Posted by | MIDDLE EAST, weapons and war | Leave a comment

China and UK joining in promoting new nuclear technology

flag-Chinaflag-UKChina, UK to fund nuclear research centre http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN-China-UK-to-fund-nuclear-research-centre-25091502.html 25 September 2015

China and the UK will work together to co-fund a £50 million ($78 million) nuclear research centre, to be headquartered in the UK. Chinese vice premier Ma Kai and British chancellor George Osborne announced the plan on 21 September during the 7th UK-China Economic and Financial Dialogue summit in Beijing.

Nuclear-marketing-continues

The Chancellor also announced a regional collaboration agreement between Cumbria and Sichuan Province, deepening commercial ties between the province and the north west of England’s expertise in nuclear decommissioning and waste management. These developments followed a landmark announcement by Osborne the same day that the UK government would provide up to £2 billion ($3 billion) in support for the planned Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant, which China may participate in.

The UK’s National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) said on 22 September that it will jointly lead the new UK-China Joint Research and Innovation Centre (JRIC) with the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC).

The JRIC – which will incorporate projects in a number of different areas of work across the whole nuclear fuel cycle – will “act as a portal to allow UK companies and academic organizations and their Chinese counterparts to work together on areas of mutual benefit and will support the development of Subject Matter Experts and others with higher level skill in both countries,” NNL said.

Over the coming months NNL and CNNC will work together to establish a program of work for the JRIC and to develop links with other UK bodies including the Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (NAMRC), the National Skills Academy for Nuclear (NSAN), the Nuclear Innovation and Research Advisory Board (NIRAB) and key UK universities working in the nuclear sector.

text-SMRsProfessor Andrew Sherry, chief scientist at NNL, wrote in a blog on the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s website that there is a strong case for exploring the potential of next generation nuclear technologies. “There is scope for developing new reactor concepts including small and modular reactors, which can provide both electricity and potentially heat, and also for considering even more advanced reactors which can be powered with reprocessed spent fuel to make more efficient use of the uranium fuel, and generate less nuclear waste,” he said. “These advances will need targeted research across the UK, drawing together universities, national laboratories and industry and linking effectively with the international community.

September 26, 2015 Posted by | China, marketing of nuclear, politics international, UK | Leave a comment

Nuclear power station at Bradwell would damage the marine environment

water-dropsflag-UKMP warning over new nuclear power station in Essex East Anglian Daily Times 25 September 2015 Matt Stott  An Essex MP has claimed a new nuclear power station at Bradwell would cause “significant damage” to the marine environment. Harwich and North Essex MP Bernard Jenkin expressed concern over the impact the site would have on the region’s fishing industries and ecology.

His intervention comes days after Chancellor George Osborne indicated a £2 billion Government guarantee for Chinese investment in the proposed Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant in Somerset could pave the way for further deals, including a majority Chinese-owned nuclear generation facility at Bradwell.

It is thought the site, next to the former nuclear power station, could be shared with between owners EDF and Chinese firms to build and run a new nuclear plant.

Mr Jenkin said: “There should be no new nuclear at Bradwell, unless the concerns about damage to the estuary and storage of nuclear waste on site can both be unequivocally resolved. “There seems no way that a new nuclear power station would avoid significant damage to the marine environment in the estuary.

“When the Magnox station was decommissioned, there was explosive recovery in the marine environment. I have been informed that a new power station would take six times more flow of water than its predecessor.

“The estuary cannot supply the volume of cooling water without severely damaging the natural life-cycle of organisms in it. This jeopardises the ecology, our local fishing industries and goes against the aim of the Marine Conservation Zone.”

He added: “It is also a significant concern… that high level nuclear waste would have to be secured and stored on the site for some decades after a new facility has reached the end of its operating life, before it can be safely transported.

“This raises questions about how could it be stored safely over such a long period.”………http://www.eadt.co.uk/news/mp_warning_over_new_nuclear_power_station_in_essex_1_4246963

September 26, 2015 Posted by | environment, oceans, UK, water | Leave a comment

Climate change, nuclear weapons – threats to humanity – Pope Francis at UN

PopePope Francis warns UN of threats from climate change, nuclear arms, war SEPTEMBER 25, 2015, BY NEW YORK — Pope Francis, in his address at the United Nations on Friday, praise the Iran nuclear deal and warned that climate change and partisan conflicts threaten humanity.

Francis said the ecological crisis and widespread destruction of biodiversity “can threaten the very existence of the human species.” He said a “right of the environment” exists, and any harm done to the environment therefore is a harm done to humanity. “We live in communion with it, since the environment itself entails ethical limits which human activity must acknowledge and respect,” he said.

Pope Francis praised the Iran nuclear deal and said there is an “urgent need” to rid the world of nuclear weapons. “The recent agreement reached on the nuclear question in a sensitive region of Asia and the Middle East is proof of the potential of political goodwill and of law, exercised with sincerity, patience and constancy,” he said.

Francis also warned that current global conflicts should “serve as a grave summons to an examination of conscience on the part of those charged with the conduct of international affairs.” …….http://fox5sandiego.com/2015/09/25/pope-francis-warns-un-of-threats-from-climate-change-nuclear-arms-war/

September 26, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, Religion and ethics | Leave a comment

Pope Francis praises Iran nuclear deal, and calls for abolition of all nuclear weapons

At UN, Pope Francis Praises Iran Nuclear Deal, Haaaretz, 25 Sept 15 
Pope calls for a nuclear free world and also blasts the ‘selfish and boundless thirst for power and material prosperity.’ DPA and Reuters Sep 25, 2015 Pope Francis expressed praise on Friday for the nuclear deal struck with Iran and called for the abolition of all nuclear weapons during a speech at the United Nations’ General Assembly in New York.
“The recent agreement reached on the nuclear question in a sensitive region of Asia and the Middle East is proof of the potential of political good will and of law, exercised with sincerity, patience and constancy,” Francis says.
“There is urgent need to work for a world free of nuclear weapons … with the goal of a complete prohibition of these weapons,” he said
The Pope also strongly condemned the craving for material gains and power, telling world leaders gathered at the UN that greed is destroying the Earth’s resources and aggravating poverty.
“A selfish and boundless thirst for power and material prosperity leads both to the misuse of available natural resources and to the exclusion of the weak and disadvantaged,” he said in the speech.
The spiritual leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics condemned the “grave offense” of economic and social exclusion…………
Later on Friday, he will lead an inter-religious prayer service at the site of the Sept. 11, 2001, hijacked plane attacks by Islamist militants that brought down the World Trade Center, killing nearly 3,000 people.

September 26, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, Religion and ethics | Leave a comment

Iran hastens to meet the terms of the nuclear deal

RouhaniIran rushes to meet terms of nuclear deal to lift sanctions President Hassan Rouhani keen to end sanctions, as European firms pursue lucrative contracts such as huge railway and airport expansion projects, Guardian,  , 16 Sept 15  Iran is stepping up efforts to implement a landmark nuclear deal by January so as to benefit from sanctions relief, with European companies lining up for what one investor described as the most attractive opportunity in frontier markets globally.

President Hassan Rouhani, who is visiting New York to speak at the UN general assembly next week, said at a meeting with journalists and media executives on Friday that “conditions were ripe” for his administration to start implementing the agreement, struck in Vienna in July, by the end of the year.

His comments were echoed by business leaders and world investors participating in the first international conference studying investment and trade opportunities in Iran since the nuclear accord. The second Europe-Iran forum took place over the course of two days in Geneva, ending on Friday.

European corporations have already begun pursuing lucrative contracts in Iran. ……..http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/25/iran-nuclear-deal-hassan-rouhani 

September 26, 2015 Posted by | Iran, politics international | Leave a comment

Britain uncomfortably close to Chinese control of nuclear power system

fearflag-UKThe China syndrome, Economist, 25 Sept 15  Britain’s nuclear plans look over-expensive and over-reliant on China “…….. Already the £24.5 billion project to build a nuclear power station called Hinkley Point C in Somerset is expected to finish over-budget and beyond the projected start date of 2023, if it ever starts at all. But on September 21st, after unveiling in Beijing a £2 billion inducement to China to help finance Britain’s first reactor in 20 years, George Osborne exposed himself to further criticism. The country should lead the way on nuclear power as it did in the 1950s, he said. But the implication was, it could only do it with China’s help (see Bagehot).

Critics say this reveals a whiff of desperation about the government’s bet on a nuclear renaissance, ………

Analysts say Mr Osborne is engaged in a complex manoeuvre to ensure that two Chinese firms help finance EDF. The £2 billion guarantee is one inducement. Another is an offer for China to build a reactor of its own at Bradwell in Essex. That has set off further alarm bells, though. Not only would it test confidence in Britain’s Office for Nuclear Regulation, it would also put a critical part of the nuclear industry and the national grid into Chinese hands.

Roland Vetter of CF Partners, an energy trader, doubts a go-ahead for the China project will come soon; licensing new nuclear technology in Britain takes years. It could be a strategic gambit, though. EDF’s boss in Britain, Vincent de Rivaz, notes that British and French companies are keen to help China, which has an ambitious programme of its own to build nuclear power plants. Mr Osborne may also calculate that Hinkley Point will create numerous jobs and building opportunities, the economic benefits of which would accrue quickly.

The costs, meanwhile, would not become apparent until the plant is completed and bills rise. Future governments would reap the fallout, not this one. http://www.economist.com/news/britain/21667932-britains-nuclear-plans-look-over-expensive-and-over-reliant-china-china-syndrome

 

September 26, 2015 Posted by | China, politics international, UK | Leave a comment