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

Is the nuclear lobby sulking?

Usually the nuclear lobby hides itself under touchy feely lovely environmental names  like “Ecomodernism”, “Environmental progress” “Bright New World”, and you have to read on for ages to find out what they’re really all about – promoting nuclear power.

So it was kind of refreshing when “Generation Atomic” showed up , joining the March For Science, pretending that nuclear power is the cure for climate change.

But, when it came to the March For Climate, they took a different tack. Apparently unable to get a contingent together to push their “nuclear for climate” theme, the nuclear lobby, particularly led by Michael Shellenger and Rod Adams urged people NOT TO MARCH.

Their new schtick is to attack environmental groups, such as Sierra Club,, and NRDC, Bill McKibben, any environmental group that doesn’t push nuclear power as the solution – and that’s just about ALL of them!

They claim that environmentalists are funded by fossil fuel industries –  the implication is that anti nuclear people are just stooges of the fossil fuel lobby  – (despite all of us strenuously opposing those polluting industries!)

May 1, 2017 Posted by | spinbuster | Leave a comment

Solar farm planned for Chernobyl nuclear site

Solar Plant to Launch at Chernobyl Nuclear Site  VOA, Oksana Ligostova and Ruslan Deynychencko reported this story for VOA. Jonathan Evans adapted the report for Learning English. 27 Apr 17 Hai Do was the editor.Thirty years after the world’s worst nuclear disaster, Chernobyl is about to become a solar farm.

Officials in Ukraine plan to build a solar energy plant at the Chernobyl nuclear site. The announcement comes during the week of the 31st anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear accident.

The Chernobyl accident occurred on April 26, 1986. The incident would become the world’s worst nuclear accident. 32 people died and dozens of others suffered painful radiation burns.

Until recently, the government of Ukraine has largely ignored the area.

Ostap Semerak is Ukraine’s minister of ecology. He spoke with VOA about the planned solar project.

“Today, almost a year after we have started the work, I can announce the first private investment project working in the Chernobyl zone to build a small solar energy plant.”

Semerak says more than 50 national and international companies have expressed interest in building the solar plant. He adds that when completed, the project will produce about half the power produced by the Chernobyl nuclear plant.

May 1, 2017 Posted by | Belarus, renewable | Leave a comment

Do a soft sell first: that’s Malaysian government’s pathway to nuclear power

Malaysia not in a hurry on nuclear power, to raise awareness first — Nancy, Borneo Post, May 1, 2017 KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will remain focused on the information and communication programme relating to nuclear power generation for the time being, and not in hurry to make any decision to introduce nuclear energy into its energy mix.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri said emphasis needed to be given on nuclear power education first.

“Not necessarily we accept it straight away. I don’t want to commit by saying that we will look into this immediately but it is important to train and educate our people about nuclear (first).

“We have a lot of fear. We are not equipping ourselves with the correct information,” she told Bernama in Shanghai after a four-day working visit to China’s nuclear power facilities recently.

Nuclear power is a complex and sensitive issue that requires deep understanding. It also needs a long-term commitment, taking a long time to materialise, while its programme requires a long lead time in order to cultivate a critical mass of domestic talent capable of supporting any future initiatives……..

During their working visit to China recently, the Malaysian delegation not only studied  safe and sustainable nuclear power technology and infrastructure, but also its implementation, especially on ways to achieve public understanding and acceptance.

The visit, which was led by Nancy, was at the invitation of the Chinese Nuclear Society, a non-profit organisation dedicated to nuclear science, technology and engineering…….

The delegation was made up of stakeholders and representatives from government agencies such as the Malaysia Nuclear Power Corporation, Energy Commission, Agensi Inovasi Malaysia, Economic Planning Unit and Malaysian Nuclear Agency, as well as academicians, and Tenaga Nasional Bhd senior executives.

Malaysia is currently exploring the option of deploying nuclear energy to meet future demand but has indicated that it is not in the rush or set a timeline for the programme……..

May 1, 2017 Posted by | Malaysia, spinbuster | Leave a comment

The disappearing Arctic ice, and its consequences

The hard truth, however, is that the Arctic as it is known today is almost certainly gone. Efforts to mitigate global warming by cutting emissions remain essential. But the state of the Arctic shows that humans cannot simply undo climate change. They will have to adapt to it

The Arctic as it is known today is almost certainly gone On current trends, the Arctic will be ice-free in summer by 2040 Apr 29th 2017

 THOSE who doubt the power of human beings to change Earth’s climate should look to the Arctic, and shiver. There is no need to pore over records of temperatures and atmospheric carbon-dioxide concentrations. The process is starkly visible in the shrinkage of the ice that covers the Arctic ocean. In the past 30 years, the minimum coverage of summer ice has fallen by half; its volume has fallen by three-quarters. On current trends, the Arctic ocean will be largely ice-free in summer by 2040.

Climate-change sceptics will shrug. Some may even celebrate: an ice-free Arctic ocean promises a shortcut for shipping between the Pacific coast of Asia and the Atlantic coasts of Europe and the Americas, and the possibility of prospecting for perhaps a fifth of the planet’s undiscovered supplies of oil and natural gas. Such reactions are profoundly misguided. Never mind that the low price of oil and gas means searching for them in the Arctic is no longer worthwhile. Or that the much-vaunted sea passages are likely to carry only a trickle of trade. The right response is fear. The Arctic is not merely a bellwether of matters climatic, but an actor in them (see Briefing).

The current period of global warming that Earth is undergoing is caused by certain gases in the atmosphere, notably carbon dioxide. These admit heat, in the form of sunlight, but block its radiation back into space, in the form of longer-wavelength infra-red. That traps heat in the air, the water and the land. More carbon dioxide equals more warming—a simple equation. Except it is not simple. A number of feedback loops complicate matters. Some dampen warming down; some speed it up. Two in the Arctic may speed it up quite a lot.

One is that seawater is much darker than ice. It absorbs heat rather than reflecting it back into space. That melts more ice, which leaves more seawater exposed, which melts more ice. And so on. This helps explain why the Arctic is warming faster than the rest of the planet. The deal on climate change made in Paris in 2015 is meant to stop Earth’s surface temperature rising by more than 2°C above pre-industrial levels. In the unlikely event that it is fully implemented, winter temperatures over the Arctic ocean will still warm by between 5° and 9°C compared with their 1986-2005 average.

The second feedback loop concerns not the water but the land. In the Arctic much of this is permafrost. That frozen soil locks up a lot of organic material. If the permafrost melts its organic contents can escape as a result of fire or decay, in the form of carbon dioxide or methane (which is a more potent greenhouse gas than CO2). This will speed up global warming directly—and the soot from the fires, when it settles on the ice, will darken it and thus speed its melting still more.

Dead habitat walking

 A warming Arctic could have malevolent effects. The world’s winds are driven in large part by the temperature difference between the poles and the tropics. If the Arctic heats faster than the tropics, this difference will decrease and wind speeds will slow—as they have done, in the northern hemisphere, by between 5 and 15% in the past 30 years. Less wind might sound desirable. It is not. One consequence is erratic behaviour of the northern jet stream, a circumpolar current, the oscillations of which sometimes bring cold air south and warm air north. More exaggerated oscillations would spell blizzards and heatwaves in unexpected places at unexpected times.

Ocean currents, too, may slow. The melting of Arctic ice dilutes salt water moving north from the tropics. That makes it less dense, and thus less inclined to sink for the return journey in the ocean depths. This slowing of circulation will tug at currents around the world, with effects on everything from the Indian monsoon to the pattern of El Niño in the Pacific ocean.

The scariest possibility of all is that something happens to the ice cap covering Greenland. This contains about 10% of the world’s fresh water. If bits of it melted, or just broke free to float in the water, sea levels could rise by a lot more than today’s projection of 74cm by the end of the century. At the moment, the risk of this happening is hard to assess because data are difficult to gather. But loss of ice from Greenland is accelerating.

What to do about all this is a different question. Even if the Paris agreement is stuck to scrupulously, the amount of carbon dioxide already in the atmosphere, together with that which will be added, looks bound eventually to make summer Arctic sea ice a thing of the past. Some talk of geoengineering—for example, spraying sulphates into the polar air to reflect sunlight back into space, or using salt to seed the creation of sunlight-blocking clouds. Such ideas would have unknown side-effects, but they are worth testing in pilot studies.

The hard truth, however, is that the Arctic as it is known today is almost certainly gone. Efforts to mitigate global warming by cutting emissions remain essential. But the state of the Arctic shows that humans cannot simply undo climate change. They will have to adapt to it.

May 1, 2017 Posted by | ARCTIC, climate change, Reference | Leave a comment

Belarus march against nuclear power on Chernobyl anniversary ClickLancashire Young Ukrainians hold candles during a ceremony near the memorial for “liquidators” who died during cleaning-up works after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster.

In 1990 the General Assembly adopted resolution 45/190, calling for “international cooperation to address and mitigate the consequences at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant”. Poisonous radiation spewed from the plant into the surrounding landscape, …
In the resolution, the Assembly recognized that “three decades after the Chernobyl disaster, the still-persistent serious long-term consequences thereof, as well as the continuing related needs of the affected communities and territories”. Now, the barren land is populated only by those workers involved…

“Today, nearly a year after we have started the work, I can announce the first private investment project working in the Chernobyl zone to build a small solar energy plant”, Ostap Semerak, Ukraine’s minister of ecology, said in an exclusive interview with VOA.

It’s projected to be completed in May. In 1986, more than 120,000 people were evacuated after an explosion at the plant.

In the years since the disaster, the radiation levels in the area near the plant have decreased enough where people can visit the area. The government recently lowered the cost of rent and streamlined renting procedures.

In 1990, Soviet Government acknowledged the need for global assistance against the explosion at Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant following which the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted resolution for worldwide cooperation to address and mitigate the consequences at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. A 30km exclusion zone remains in place.

May 1, 2017 Posted by | Belarus, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Russia still bent on selling its nuclear reactors to South Africa

Eskom confirms that Russians will continue nuclear bid, IOL, 30 April 2017, SIYABONGA MKHWANAZI

 Cape Town – The Russians will continue to prepare to bid for the nuclear-build programme, despite the decision by the Western Cape High Court to halt it.

Eskom confirmed this and awaits further directives from the government.

Friday was the deadline for all bidding companies to submit Request for Information documentation to Eskom.The court decision has also affected the deadline for the issuing of the Request for Proposals in June.

Head of Rosatom in Southern Africa, Viktor Polikarpov, told Independent Media nothing had changed with their plans to bid for the nuclear programme.

He said they would not want to comment on the case because it was a matter involving government and civil society, who took the matter to court.

Energy Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi has said she is still studying the judgment, and would not comment on whether to appeal against the court decision or not.

Kubayi will appear before MPs on Tuesday, where she will face questions on the nuclear programme.

Polikarpov said the nuclear process was not in their hands, but in the hands of the government.“We are prepared on the bidding, but much will depend on the government, how it will sort out the court issue,” he said.

Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe said the court decision had effectively nullified the process……..

He said it was clear that everything had to be nullified and started from scratch if the government still wanted to continue with the nuclear programme.

The judgment found the process followed was unlawful and unconstitutional………

May 1, 2017 Posted by | marketing, Russia, South Africa | Leave a comment

Growing opposition among law-makers to “The Cuomo Tax” – subsidising nuclear power

Lawmakers to grill regulators on upstate nuclear plant bailout plan, Lohud, Thomas C. Zambito ,  April 30, 2017 Town of Bedford Supervisor Chris Burdick says that since the town agreed to pay to take part in a state program that supports renewable energy, it should not be forced to subsidize failing upstate nuclear power plants. Seth Harrison/lohud

State lawmakers will get a second crack at grilling state energy regulators about a multi-billion dollar bailout plan for three upstate nuclear power plants that critics have dubbed “The Cuomo Tax.”

State Public Service Commission officials are expected to testify at a Monday Assembly hearing in Albany on a plan to subsidize three upstate nuclear plants through monthly surcharges on ratepayers’ electric bills over the next 12 years.

The last time the Assembly held a hearing on the issue, state officials were a no-show, to the dismay of lawmakers who considered blocking the plan until state regulators testified.

Among them is Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, D-Scarsdale.

I want to hear why we continue to bear ever more costs,” said Paulin, noting that New Yorkers already pay some of the highest utility rates in the nation. “We want some answers. It’s adding costs to our utility bills.”

State officials promised to attend Monday’s hearing, which will focus on the decision-making process that led the Public Service Commission to approve the Clean Energy Standard (CES) this summer. Interim PSC chairman Gregg Sayre is expected to testify.

……The bailout plan has attracted critics on a number of fronts. The “Stop the Cuomo Tax” campaign has pegged the total cost to ratepayers at $8 billion over 12 years. ……..

Towns challenge bailout

Several towns in northern Westchester County — North Salem, Bedford and Mamaroneck — joined a legal challenge of the CES this year. Officials say many of their residents already heeded the governor’s clean energy call by voluntarily agreeing to buy their electricity from renewable sources.

The “Stop The Cuomo Tax” campaign has taken out billboards and radio ads attacking the plan.

On Thursday, the campaign released figures claiming that New York utility ratepayers have already paying out approximately $1.37 million per day since the surcharges were tucked into bills on April 1. They say the money could have gone to hire 570 teachers or to forgive the student loans of 1,230 New Yorkers.

…….You don’t have to be an economist to realize that this is bad public policy,” said Blair Horner, the executive director of the New York Public Interest Research Group. “New York could be facing a significant budget shortfall if there are cuts in federal funding for state programs. Gov. Cuomo should be focused on supporting critical government programs, not lavishing ratepayer dollars on profitable businesses.”

The three plants are owned by Chicago-based Exelon Corporation……..


May 1, 2017 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

EPA removing “outdated language” – all mention of climate change, from its website

EPA scrubs website of references to Obama climate plans, Politico,  Nick Juliano  njuliano@politico.com04/28/17  EPA is overhauling its website to remove “outdated language” referring to Obama-era programs President Donald Trump has targeted for elimination, including virtually all mentions of climate change, the agency announced late Friday.

The agency eliminated climate change from a drop-down list of “Environmental Topics” displayed on its front page and took down a separate page on the topic that had been up as recently as Monday.

The website changes had been expected, but environmentalists were unsettled.

“Cleansing has begun,” the Natural Resources Defense Council’s David Doniger wrote on Twitter. “Now only alternative facts.”

In a press release, EPA said it was removing references to the “so-called Clean Power Plan,” which the agency is reviewing in response to an executive order Trump signed last month. And it said it was reviewing content on the site related to climate change and regulations……EPA maintained links to archived versions of the Obama-era versions of the pages it took down

May 1, 2017 Posted by | climate change, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | Leave a comment

Despite Chernobyl’s continuing danger, Ukraine keeps on with nuclear power

Ukraine clings to nuclear power despite Chernobyl trauma, Yahoo 7 news, –  on April 30, 2017 “………Ukraine Wednesday marked 31 years since the disaster in which thousands died with the country extending the lifespan of its communist-era nuclear reactors and turning atomic power into a workhorse that will be around for generations to come.

The Chernobyl plant’s fourth reactor in the north of former Soviet Ukraine exploded in 1986 after a safety test went horribly wrong at 1:23 am on April 26.

Some Ukrainians remain worried that a similar catastrophe could hit their country again.

“The main risk in using nuclear energy in Ukraine is associated with reactors that have exhausted their lifespans,” says Iryna Golovko of the National Ecological Centre of Ukraine’s energy projects department.

“Today six of Ukraine’s 15 operating reactors have surpassed their designed service lives,” she told AFP. “And by 2020, there will be 12 of them.”………

Ukraine’s Energoatom state nuclear power provider has brushed off any fears about the safety repercussions of the extra burden being put on the country’s four atomic power plants — one of which is Europe’s largest……

May 1, 2017 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Declassified documents reveal USA’s and Russians past plans to nuclear bomb the moon

WAR OF THE WORLDS  Declassified documents reveal America and Russia’s bizarre plans to obliterate the Moon with nuclear weapons
At the time, military bosses believed that they could feasibly hit a target on the Moon within an accuracy of two miles,
 By George Harrison, 30th April 2017, 

May 1, 2017 Posted by | Russia, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

America might be cyber-sabotaging North Korea’s nuclear program, Trump suggests

Trump hints that the US may be sabotaging North Korea’s nuclear program ALEX LOCKIE MAY 1, 2017, It happened again — a North Korean missile launch exploded in the air, over land, just a few minutes after launching on Friday.

May 1, 2017 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Nuclear power lobby in South Africa stymied by court ruling

What Now For South Africa’s Nuclear Energy Plans? Any deals with Russia, the U.S. and South Korea are off and government must go back to the drawing board. Pieter du ToitDeputy Editor, HuffPost South Africa  26/04/2017 The official request for information (RFI) issued by Eskom for its nuclear build programme is off the table. What does this mean? That the government must completely start again when it comes to its nuclear energy plans for South Africa.

 Liz McDaid, of Earthlife Africa, one of the two applicants who asked the Western Cape High Court to set aside government’s nuclear plans, says the only option left to Eskom and government is to “go back to the drawing board”.
 “The entire nuclear procurement programme has been found to be unlawful. The whole thing has been stopped, which includes the RFI issued in December and which closes on Friday,” McDaid told HuffPost.

The nuclear procurement programme was moved from the department of energy in December and Eskom issued the RFI — a process whereby parties indicate their interest in tendering for the deal — just before Christmas.

Earthlife Africa and the Southern Africa Faith Communities Environment Institute (Safcei) asked the court to set the programme aside. The court found the entire programme to be “unlawful and unconstitutional” and that there was insufficient consultation…….

May 1, 2017 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Win and Solar development hampered by USA subsidies for nuclear power

Lifeline for Nuclear Plants Is Threatening Wind and Solar Power, Bloomberg by  Joe Ryan April 25, 2017, 

  • Five states debating subsidies for struggling reactors
  • Propping up emissions-free nuclear may stall renewables demand

The push to save U.S. nuclear plants for the sake of fighting climate change is threatening support for the bread and butter of clean power: wind and solar. New York and Illinois have already approved as much as $10 billion in subsidies to keep struggling reactors open for the next decade as part of a plan to limit fossil fuel consumption. Lawmakers in Ohio, Connecticut and New Jersey are debating whether to do the same…….

Many environmentalists remain leery of supporting nuclear power, citing terrorism risks, the problem of dealing with spent nuclear fuel, and more. Instead of propping up struggling reactors, states should promote energy efficiency and encourage development of wind, solar and power storage, said John Coequyt, the Sierra Club’s director of climate campaigns.

Nuclear’s economic woes comes as wind and solar are starting to show they’re cheap enough to compete with traditional generators, after years of help from subsidies. …..

There are key differences between wind and solar subsidies and those for nuclear, according to clean-energy developers. Renewable energy credits have spurred an emerging industry, whereas nuclear subsidies are to preserve aging plants. And while wind and solar developers compete against each other for subsidies, those for nuclear benefit a single technology.

Market Rules

“The renewables industry has been playing by competitive market rules that have helped to produce good prices,” Amy Francetic, an Invenergy senior vice president, said in an interview. “This is picking and winners and losers in a way that’s troubling.”

Propping up nuclear plans won’t be cheap. If every reactor across the northeast and mid-Atlantic wins subsidies at the same level as those New York, ratepayers would need to pay an additional $3.9 billion annually, according to Bloomberg Intelligence. The subsides are being challengedin federal court by power generators including Dynegy Inc. and NRG Energy.

“This has taken a lot of wind from the green economy’s sails,” Abraham Silverman, an attorney for NRG, said in an interview. “We see an enormous lost opportunity to invest in truly clean infrastructure.”…..

May 1, 2017 Posted by | business and costs, politics, renewable, USA | Leave a comment

$Billions for America in Arctic oil and gas drilling, says Donald Trump

Trump moves to lift bans on Arctic oil and gas drilling, Donald Trump says lifting bans on drilling for oil and gas in offshore Arctic and Atlantic areas will pull in “billions of dollars” for America. SBS News  29 APR 2017 –

 US President Donald Trump has signed an executive order aimed at lifting bans on drilling for oil and gas in offshore Arctic and Atlantic areas, saying it would pull in “billions of dollars” for America and create jobs.

However, Trump made no mention of the environmental rationale for the bans, brought in by his predecessor Barack Obama.

“Our country’s blessed with incredible natural resources, including abundant offshore oil and natural gas reserves, but the federal government has kept 94 per cent of these offshore areas closed for exploration and production,” the president said before journalists in the White House……..

May 1, 2017 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Transport of radioactive trash would be a dangerous problem for plan for Yucca Mountain asw nuclear waste4 dump

U.S. lawmakers push Yucca nuclear dump facing transport crunch, Reuters,  By Timothy Gardner | WASHINGTON, 29 Apr 17, Lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday debated resurrecting the stalled Yucca Mountain spent nuclear fuel dump in Nevada, a project critics say is hindered by the lack of an easy transport route.

Representative John Shimkus, an Illinois Republican, has proposed draft legislation to restart the licensing of Yucca Mountain. The government has already spent billions of dollars for initial construction of the project, which has been pending since Ronald Reagan was president.

Former President Barack Obama opposed Yucca and stopped its licensing process in 2010. But President Donald Trump’s proposed 2018 budget provides $120 million to restart licensing and for development of interim nuclear waste sites until Yucca can be completed.

More details about the Trump administration’s support of Yucca could come when a broader budget is released in May. Currently, spent nuclear fuel, which can be deadly if left unshielded, is stored at reactors across the country, first in cooling ponds and then in thick casks.

The Yucca site itself, about 100 miles (160 km) northwest of Las Vegas, faces a cumbersome and costly licensing process that could take years to complete and questions from critics about how long spent fuel can remain without radiation leaking into an aquifer.

Yucca supporters say there is little groundwater at the desert site and what is there is contained by barriers and does not flow to any river or drinking water supply.

An even trickier problem will be getting the spent fuel to Yucca Mountain safely by train and truck from nuclear reactors sites all across the country.

“Transportation is the Achilles heel of the Yucca Mountain repository site,” said Bob Halstead, the head of Nevada’s agency for nuclear projects.

One train route studied by the Department of Energy, known as Caliente, has been at least partially blocked by Obama’s 2015 designation of a national monument called Basin and Range.

Another route, known as Mina, is opposed by the Walker River tribe, which withdrew permission in 2007 for the government to ship waste through its reservation.

Many casino owners and gaming associations also oppose the transport of spent nuclear fuel near the city of Las Vegas, saying publicity about the shipments could harm property values and tourism…..

There are no nuclear power reactors in Nevada, and the state’s entire Congressional delegation, which includes members of both parties, opposes Yucca.

Representative Jacky Rosen, a Nevada Democrat, said a major accident would harm human health, cost hundreds of millions of dollars in cleanup costs, and damage the Las Vegas economy. “Do you honestly believe that shipping over 5,000 truck casks of high-level nuclear waste over a span of 50 years won’t result in at least one radiological accident?” Rosen said at the hearing…….

May 1, 2017 Posted by | safety, USA | Leave a comment