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Effects of nuclear war – Famine

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For Day 3 of the Global Week of Action, let’s look at the agricultural effects of nuclear weapon detonations.

International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN)

Nuclear weapons are the only devices ever created with the capacity to destroy all complex life forms on Earth within a relatively short period.

In addition to causing tens of millions of immediate deaths, a regional nuclear war involving around 100 Hiroshima-sized weapons would disrupt the global climate and agricultural production so severely that more than a billion people would be at risk of famine, according to research by IPPNW.

The smoke and dust from a limited nuclear war would cause an abrupt drop in global temperatures and rainfall by blocking up to 10 per cent of sunlight from reaching the Earth’s surface. Sudden global cooling would shorten growing seasons, threatening agriculture worldwide.

Increases in food prices would make food inaccessible to hundreds of millions of the poorest people in the world. For those who are already chronically malnourished, just a 10 per cent decline in food consumption would result in starvation. Infectious disease epidemics and conflict over scarce resources would be rife.

For more on the climate and agricultural effects of nuclear detonations, see Dr Ira Helfand in Unspeakable Suffering: Nuclear famine: A billion people at risk

Click to access PartII.pdf

 

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Mystery radiation ‘clouds’ may pose risk to air travellers

By David Hambling

Danger zones in the air where radiation levels surge could pose an unrecognised health hazard. Airliners may have to avoid these in future, just as they do with volcanic ash clouds, to minimise any risk to travellers and crew.

We have long known that high-altitude flight exposes us to cosmic rays. The radiation dose on a flight from London to Tokyo is roughly equivalent to a chest X-ray.

Now research flights have revealed the existence of “clouds” where radiation levels can be at least double the usual level. They were discovered as a result of the NASA-funded Automated Radiation Measurements for Aerospace Safety (ARMAS) programme, which aims to develop new methods of measuring and monitoring high-altitude radiation.

In 265 flights, radiation levels detected generally followed the expected pattern, but in at least six instances they surged, as though the aircraft was flying through a radiation cloud.

“We have seen several cases where the exposure is doubled while flying through the cloud,” says ARMAS principal investigator W. Kent Tobiska, of Los Angeles firm Space Environment Technologies. “It is quite variable and can easily be more or less than that.”

Even higher levels have been recorded in some cases, but those results remain unpublished while the team considers alternative explanations for the data.

Tobiska says the two main sources of radiation, cosmic rays and the solar wind, can’t account for the surges. “Our new measurements show a third component.”
Freed electrons

The surges coincided with geomagnetic storms. This points the finger at energetic electrons being lost from the outer Van Allen radiation belts, where charged particles mostly from the solar wind are trapped by Earth’s magnetic field.

Tobiska believes that such a storm can liberate electrons trapped in the Van Allen belts. “Those electrons are driven into the upper atmosphere, collide with nitrogen and oxygen atoms and molecules, and then create a spray of secondary and tertiary radiation, likely in the form of gamma rays.” This radiation, he thinks, is what the ARMAS flights are detecting across a wide area.

Daniel Baker of the University of Colorado’s Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics says this mechanism seems feasible. “It is plausible that the ARMAS results are related to enhanced loss of radiation belt particles from the magnetosphere into the middle and lower atmosphere.”

There are no set standards for radiation safety in US aviation at present, but Tobiska says that regulations are likely in the next few years.

The absolute risk may be low, as a chest X-ray only increases the risk of a fatal cancer by 1 in 200,000, but these must be balanced against the large number of flights and whether risk is avoidable.

“This is mainly for crew members,” says Tobiska, “but would certainly benefit frequent flyers and even fetuses in their first trimester.”

ARMAS work using satellite data and airborne sensors may allow the radiation “clouds” to be tracked. Tobiska says that in future, flights may be diverted or directed to a lower altitude to avoid them.

Journal reference: Space Weather, DOI: 10.1002/2016SW001419

https://www.newscientist.com/article/2120295-mystery-radiation-clouds-may-pose-risk-to-air-travellers/

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Seeking freshwater pandas: the ‘flagship umbrella species’ approach

“Freshwater pandas”. Good idea but what about the “pandas” who have lived for over a century on the area now being proposed for three nuclear reactors!? Does anyone really think that the diverse habitats within this 1400 acres site can be “mitigated”? Creation of “alternative habitat” is being suggested by the financially torpedoing developers Toshiba, and to our shame those who are supposed to be looking out for wildlife in Cumbria are going along with this insanity. Where will the freshwater pearl mussels live if this goes ahead? Rivers, Sea and Coasts cannot be “created.” Where will we And the wildlife live, what will we drink?

Source: Seeking freshwater pandas: the ‘flagship umbrella species’ approach

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A word from the Israeli nuclear bomb whistleblower to the world Mordechai Vanunu – Freedom Now!

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A message from Mordecai Vanunu https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10207022907766220&set=a.1328182659724.44809.1685685101&type=3&permPage=1

“Here is what many people are saying:—–This Jewish state ,Israel, what do they want from you?.you are not a Jew any more, they rejected your message against Nuclear Weapons,they make you a traitor, they punished you in 18 years of Isolation, with cruel barbaric treatments, they try to break you for 30 years without success ,What do they want? Let Vanunu go Now.1986-2017.

Enough is enough!

All the world watching this case.and want the only answer,Let vanunu go ,now.

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Nuclear write-down leaves Toshiba with $3.5-bln loss in Q3 – Nikkei

financial-crisis

12 Feb 2017

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese conglomerate Toshiba Corp probably suffered a group net loss of about 400 billion yen ($3.52 billion) in the nine months through December, the Nikkei reported on Sunday.

The loss is largely due to a goodwill impairment of around 600 billion yen on a U.S. nuclear unit that came to light in late 2016.

During the year-earlier period, Toshiba lost a similarly significant 479.4 billion yen.

The company hopes to keep the amount it owes from exceeding the value of its assets for the full year through March by selling part of its chip operations and taking other measures.

Toshiba will announce earnings for the April-December period on Tuesday, along with a full-year outlook. The company is also expected to explain the cause of the losses, measures to avoid similar events and plans to rebuild its nuclear business.

The loss comes from the write-down of goodwill of CB&I Stone & Webster, a U.S.-based nuclear plant builder Toshiba acquired through U.S. subsidiary Westinghouse Electric in late 2015. Dwindling global demand for nuclear power and poor project

management have pushed up labor and materials costs at the company to levels far exceeding initial estimates.

In addition, it turns out that Toshiba overestimated the value of the company’s projects at the time of acquisition.

As a result, Toshiba decided to write down the premium it paid for the company, the difference between the acquisition price and Stone & Webster’s net assets, and book it as a group loss for Toshiba’s nuclear operations.

Toshiba, which is trying to hasten the process of spinning off its semiconductor business, plans to seek approval at an extraordinary meeting of shareholders to sell some of the new venture’s shares to boost its capital.

By the first deadline in early February, five groups, including a major foreign chipmaker and a fund, had expressed interest in buying the shares.

By September, Toshiba had 360 billion yen in capital. For the full year, a weak yen is likely to boost the value of its foreign currency-denominated assets.

Profit from brisk chip operations will help boost its capital. Toshiba also plans to sell shares in some listed subsidiaries.

Toshiba is seen considering another goodwill write-down for Landis+Gyr, the world’s leading electric meter maker, which it acquired in 2011.

In this scenario, Toshiba would devalue the company’s premium, which was at 143.2 billion yen at the end of September, in the current fiscal year. Whether Toshiba writes off the entire value or part remains undecided.

Toshiba had expected Landis, a Swiss company, to become a growth engine for its smart grid and smart community thrust, but its hopes have not materialised.

(Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

https://ca.sports.yahoo.com/news/nuclear-write-down-leaves-toshiba-3-5-bln-032239116–sector.html

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

As Washington’s nuke conference wraps up, non-state mushroom cloud fears dominate (And for good reason)

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Branko Brkic

12 Feb 2017 02:00 (South Africa)

The two-day Washington Nuclear Summit, initiated by US President Obama, came to a close with a final communiqué that commits attending nations to secure all nuclear material in four years.

World leaders agreed to secure or destroy hundreds of thousands of tons of weapons-grade nuclear fuel by 2014, after Obama called on the rest of the leaders “not simply to talk, but to act” to head off the risks of nuclear terrorism and proliferation.

The communiqué spells out 12 obligations of signatories, including a promise to maintain effective security of the nuclear material in their countries. It also commits them to a specific work plan of best practices, it encourages participants to join international efforts to restrict the exchange of nuclear material, and directs nations to make new investments in nuclear security measures.

Earlier, on the second day of the 47-nation Nuclear Security Summit, Obama told attendees that the risk of a nuclear attack was on the rise – despite the Cold War being over – but this time it could be from terrorists rather than an enemy nation. Obama said the current nuclear reality was a “cruel irony of history” and efforts by al-Qaeda to gain access to fissile materials means “the risk of a nuclear attack has gone up”. He added that it was time “not simply to make pledges, but to make real progress for the security of our people. All this, in turn, requires something else, something more fundamental. It requires a new mindset — that we summon the will, as nations, as partners, to do what this moment in history demands.”

Underscoring his point, Obama said dozens of countries had nuclear materials that could be sold or stolen, and that a weapon made from an apple-sized lump of plutonium could kill or injure hundreds of thousands. The document calls on the 47 countries to act together to prevent “non-state actors” — read al-Qaeda, friends and similar — from obtaining nuclear technology.

https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2017-02-12-as-washingtons-nuke-conference-wraps-up-non-state-mushroom-cloud-fears-dominate/#.WJ_jPWebz7A

See also;

We reported recently on the mostly censored story on Jihadists acquiring Highly Enriched Fissionable Uranium which was discovered by the Indian police. The reporting of this find was played down and the term “Depleted Uranium” was used instead of Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) as the purity of the reported Uranium and high cost  revealed. The full article with sources can be found here;

https://europeannewsweekly.wordpress.com/2017/01/28/a-special-team-to-secure-the-bengali-republic-day-parade-from-nuclear-and-chemical-threats/

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Multimedia project on nukes ‘freaks out’ Berlin film festival

12th February 2017,

Audiences at the Berlin film festival are submitting themselves to a groundbreaking immersive multimedia project on nuclear war, whose risk its US filmmakers say has soared over the last year.

“The Bomb” by Kevin Ford, Smriti Keshari and investigative journalist Eric Schlosser (“Fast Food Nation”) surrounds cinemagoers with floor-to-ceiling screens, with a live band playing the score.

The 360-degree installation uses the shock and horror that atomic weapons inspire to explore their history, destructive power and rampant proliferation today.

After stunning viewers at New York’s Tribeca festival last year, the filmmakers brought the experience to Berlin, once on the front line of the Cold War and one of the likely first targets of a thermonuclear conflagration.

Running a little less than an hour, it bombards viewers with never-before-seen archival footage and recent images of missile launches and atomic explosions, as well as old television commercials touting the glories of nuclear energy.

The filmmakers say their message could not be more urgent, with nine nations possessing about 15,000 nuclear weapons — 90 percent of them in the United States and Russia — and global politics in a state of upheaval.

– ‘Perverse appeal’ –

Schlosser said the volatile personalities of some of the world’s leaders with their “fingers on the button” haunted his sleep.

He said that while members of the US military involved in the nuclear weapons programme had to undergo a battery of tests insuring their reliability, the same did not apply to the US president.

“So I think it’s safe to say that my current president (Donald Trump) would not be allowed in the Air Force or anywhere near a nuclear weapon,” he said.

“And yet he, right now, he’s the only person in the US authorised to order the use of a nuclear weapon.”

Pedro Gething, a 31-year-old Portuguese man in the audience, called the project “interesting” but admitted it “kind of freaks me out”.

“There was a lot I didn’t know and visually, it was quite an experience, very beautiful,” he said.

Eleonore Clemente, 26, from France, also admired the “aesthetics” of the installation — underlining what the filmmakers call the “perverse appeal” that nuclear weapons can exert.

“Nuclear weapons are the most powerful machines” ever created, Keshari said.

“There is definitely something seductive about them. It is this seduction we wanted to get across.”

She was drawn to the project after reading Schlosser’s 2013 book “Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety”.

The producers say that the two biggest threats to humankind are climate change and the atomic bomb.

But while the effects of global warming can be seen, for example, in a proliferation of catastrophic weather events, nuclear weapons remain out of sight and thus often out of mind.

“That may be a way of reaching more people,” Eleonore said.

“Maybe it’s strange to say ‘I liked the film, I found it beautiful’ because it’s talking about awful things. But maybe a more ‘specialist’ approach would have turned people off.”

Lakisha Vergeest, a 19-year-old from the Netherlands, said she was leaving feeling “a little bit down” and even “shocked” by pondering the scope of the global nuclear arsenal.

“15,000 is a lot,” she said. “It’s too much.”

The Berlin film festival runs until February 19.

http://www.expatica.com/de/news/Entertainment-film-festival-Germany-US-nuclear_954324.html

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Italian “businessman” dumped North Korean nuclear waste in ocean near Taiwan

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

UK nuclear attack “suicide subs” join the “suicide sub” Trident club!

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A CRACKED nuclear reactor has led to more than half of the Royal Navy’s frontline attack submarines being taken out of service.

PUBLISHED: 00:01, Sun, Feb 12,

Experts warned the fault in the reactor of HMS Trenchant was so serious that the Trafalgar fleet may never sail again. The fracture is being treated as an “irreparable generic fault” that will prevent it from being able to carry out normal duties.

It means Britain may be forced to beg for international support in protecting our four Vanguard submarines, which carry Britain’s Trident nuclear deterrent.

Britain deploys seven SSN nuclear-powered hunter-killers. Last week it was revealed that the four older Trafalgar-class submarines, Trenchant, Torbay, Triumph and Talent, were out of action due to repairs and maintenance.

However, sources have confirmed that the Trenchant was docked after engineers discovered a fracture at the heart of its nuclear reactor while at sea. The fracture is on a metal weld connecting a coolant pipe to the reactor pressure vessel. It is currently less than 100mm long, classing it as a critical fault, but if it grows it would be classified “catastrophic”. Because it sits within a tank of water to shield the radiation it is extremely difficult for engineers to get at.

A Navy source said yesterday: “The fracture has appeared in a pipe weld and our safety measures are very high. We will not sail until they are checked.”

The Defence Safety Nuclear Regulator will decide the fate of the vessels, but nuclear engineers warned the fault was likely to be “terminal” – and may also affect the other three vessels because they are so old.

Nuclear engineer John Large, who in 2000 helped to repair a similar but less drastic fault on HMS Tireless, said: “If the fracture is in the reactor pressure valve, it would indicate that it’s on a weld. This would be very difficult to access.

A crack has developed. It is at a critical level and it has been detected

John Large, Nuclear engineer

“It sits in a tank of water, to shield the radiation. Over time the rector pressure vessel becomes increasingly radioactive, and most of these vessels are approaching the end of their lifespan. The probability is that the Trenchant is non-repairable and that would be a disaster. A problem like this is likely to develop in each boat, because they are of similar ages.”

Once such a fracture appears it is only a matter of time before restarting the reactor would make it grow to 100mm.

Under the so-called break preclusion system, the reactor is designed never to require repair and never to fail. If it does fail it can’t be replaced.

Mr Large added: “A crack has developed. It is at a critical level and it has been detected. Like when you have a chip on a windscreen, it is difficult to reliably predict when it will suddenly grow and shatter.”

Sources suggested yesterday that the Royal Navy would be “pulling out all the stops” to deploy the boats once more.

However, deploying any submarine with such a fault will render it a “lame duck”, as it would be forced to avoid the strain caused by sudden shifts in temperature, or risk catastrophic failure.

Mr Large said: “These submarines are hunter killers – they are effectively sports cars required to manoeuvre rapidly. They need to run between ‘State A,’ idling, and ‘State B’, full power battle state, quickly if they are to avoid detection or even torpedo strikes. You cannot do this if there is a crack.”

The Trafalgar submarines have had their service extended by 10 years due to ongoing delays in the construction and delivery of the new Astute class. But of Britain’s three Astutes, two are undergoing trials while the third is being repaired after a collision in Gibraltar.

In 2013 a Ministry of Defence report revealed two Trafalgar class boats had been operating with a safety defect which put the vessels and crew at “serious” potential risk. Rear Admiral Chris Parry warned: “The SSNs are gatekeepers that detect and protect the UK from intrusive patrols by Russia and other opponents. They also provide vital protection for our Vanguard submarines.

Our deterrent is independent so, if our SSNs are not available, there are limits to what we can ask even the US to do because our Vanguard submarines need to maintain the secrecy of their operations. It does not help that the Government scrapped our Nimrod Maritime Patrol aircraft.

“Instead of gatekeepers I suspect that we would have to ask the US to act as linebackers to keep any hostile snooping submarines at a distance.”

An MoD spokesman denied that the submarines would be permanently out of action. He said: “It is untrue to suggest that HMS Trenchant or the rest of the T-class subs are unable to deploy again.”

Detailed pictures of damage and other images on link;

http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/766212/Nuclear-warning-royal-navy-submarines-grounded-crack-reactor

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

UK Ministers “forced” to throw taxpayers cash at nuclear plants – Step 1 bail out – To get “skin in the game”!

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February 12 2017, 12:01am,

Ministers are poised to admit that taxpayer cash will be used to fund a new fleet of nuclear power stations — reversing years of government opposition to direct public subsidy.

With Britain’s ageing coal plants due to shut by 2025, the government is banking on new nuclear reactors going up at sites including Wylfa in Anglesey, north Wales, and Moorside in Cumbria.

Successive energy ministers have insisted that no public cash will be used to fund this new generation. Yet industry sources say that energy secretary, Greg Clarke, that this hands-off approach an not persist if the plants are to be built. They say that Whitehall is preparing to launch a consultation….. [PAYWALL]

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/business/ministers-forced-to-throw-taxpayers-cash-at-nuclear-plants-ptqs9w5jn

FOLLOW UP NOTES FOR THOSE WITHOUT A SUBSCRIPTION from Shaun McGee aka arclight2011

Posted to nuclear-news.net

12 Feb 2017

There are quiet a few issues that have brought about the UK need get the beleaguered Tax payer to cough up for these nuclear new builds and the writing has been on the wall for some time now. One of the reasons for adding the 2 European nuclear treaties to the list of Brexits (EURATOM and also ESPOO the cross border radiation contamination treaty) is because the UK was not conforming to either fully anyway. And now that the EURATOM directive now includes extra health and safety rules with extra oversight being brought into legislation, the UK did not want to conform to such transparency and certainly did not want to be obliging any further restrictions on the allowable dose to humans from radioactivity sources that are likely because of many new health and environmental studies that have and are being done.

The military application of UK nuclear is intrinsic to the UK nuclear power program and the crony based economic policies to keep this old technology going. The UK`s nuclear new build has to be done to support the existing energy and industrial power elites of the nuclear and fossil fuel industries. Both media and academic institutions are largely  bought and paid for in the UK.

So a withdrawal from the EU with a stand alone policy will limit these institutions ability to report or study in any areas that the Government sees fit to announce is of importance to “National Security” and therefore under the remit of the 2014 Secrets Act change that made many thing “official sensitive” (with a possible 2 year sentence) and indeed, with the even newer whistleblower version going through Parliament (that will allow over 10 years imprisonment, we see that  the UK has followed Japans lead in attempting to clamp down on any pitiful vestige of free speech and academic freedoms that might be left in the UK even today.

Lastly the UK corporations have one more reason to drain the UK Tax payer out of their money. The issue is with Uranium stocks of which many UK based business is invested in. Not only have these stocks plummeted because the biggest nuclear providers on the global market (Japan up to 2011 and China) are quickly and quietly investing huge amounts in the renewables markets with China employing more people in their renewables sector than the whole world combined.

China recently pulled out of a deal with Areva the French nuclear processor and may well decide to pull out of the UK creating an even bigger Tax burden. It looks like that the UK government will OK the Tax support of some projects and when the inevitable failure of international funding occours the Tax payer will be have to dig deeper into their pockets. The UK Government and their Industry cronies need to get the Tax payer to have some “skin in the game” and then the UK future energy policy will be set on course to make investors wealthy for decades to come.

To support my assertions I will leave a range of posts with source links and posits from recent weeks etc, for your easy perusal. Regards Shaun McGee aka arclight2011

China, The UK`s best nuclear friend will turn the UK into a debt Zombie like Greece one way or the other

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/02/china-decides-against-taking-stake-in-areva-and-runs-away/

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/06/china-more-than-doubled-solar-capacity-in-2016/

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/05/saudis-take-new-interest-in-renewable-energy-and-its-bye-bye-to-nuclear-programs/

UK based problems with design and finance

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/05/next-generation-nuclear-power-not-just-yet/

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/04/blow-to-uk-nuclear-strategy-as-toshiba-considers-pulling-out-of-cumbria-plant/

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/04/europes-biggest-nuclear-construction-project-now-hangs-in-the-balance/

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/04/uk-governments-work-on-small-modular-nuclear-reactors-smrs-has-slowed-down/

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/04/the-costs-of-hinkley-nuclear-project-to-scotland/

Mining disaster

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/03/cameco-to-lose-1-3bn-as-japans-tepco-cancels-uranium-contract/

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/04/uranium-companies-having-worst-time-ever/

Health issues with the nuclear industry and future legal and legislative liability

https://nuclear-news.net/2017/02/03/new-details-about-uranium-chemistry-show-how-it-binds-to-organic-matter/

https://europeannewsweekly.wordpress.com/2017/01/28/uk-nuclear-groups-whinging-like-fk-uk-government-tries-to-defend-itself-against-nuclear-compensation-claims-regardless/

https://europeannewsweekly.wordpress.com/2016/12/31/corruption-in-japan-and-uk-hides-thyroid-cancers/

And this legal challenge to Euratom coming to an EU country near you soon

https://rejustificationofeuratomireland.wordpress.com/

NUCLEAR WARNING: Royal Navy submarines GROUNDED as CRACK is found in reactor

A CRACKED nuclear reactor has led to more than half of the Royal Navy’s frontline attack submarines being taken out of service.

February 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 2 Comments