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

President of an energy firm named as new nuclear commissioner in USA

Former Midlands mayor named to federal nuclear boar  http://www.thestate.com/news/politics-government/article152085072.html  BY BRISTOW MARCHANT, bmarchant@thestate.com, 23 may 17 A South Carolinian has been asked to serve on the federal body that oversees America’s nuclear power plants.

May 24, 2017 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

UK’s nuclear weapons in Scottish waters – a controversial question

The nuclear question on the Clyde, 23 May 2017 

On the banks of the Clyde, some of the most powerful weapons mankind has ever known are based at Faslane Naval Base.

The UK Parliament has backed renewing the Trident missile system. Ministers in London have said they have no alternative to Faslane – the weapons are staying in Scotland.

But that’s controversial. The Scottish government wants nuclear weapons moved from Scottish waters. And when the House of Commons voted on renewal, all but one of the MPs representing Scottish seats opposed……http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-40012838#

May 24, 2017 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

EDF secretly planning to extend the life of its 58 reactors in France

Kallanish Energy 23rd May 2017, EDF is secretly planning to extend the life of its 58 reactors in France by
10 to 20 years. EDF plans to delay targets in the 2015 energy plan to reduce the share of nuclear power from 75% to 50% by 2025 to 2050.  http://www.kallanishenergy.com/2017/05/23/edf-eyes-lifespan-extension-of-french-fleet-of-10-20-years-bfm-tv/

Engineering & Technology 22nd May 2017 EDF, the French state-controlled power company, has denied media reports that it intends to delay plans to reduce the amount of nuclear power in France’s energy mix by 25 years.  https://eandt.theiet.org/content/articles/2017/05/edf-denies-it-wants-to-delay-nuclear-power-phase-out-in-france/

May 24, 2017 Posted by | France, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Is Cumbria Being Frogmarched into Nuclear AND Coal?

Coal AND Nuclear … A Honeycomb of Lies in West Cumbria, Coal Action UK  March 28, 2017  Is Cumbria Being Frogmarched into Nuclear AND Coal? The plan to reopen the Whitehaven coal mine under the Irish Sea has been rumbling along for a few years with no raised eyebrows. Why are alarm bells not ringing out loud and clear? This nasty plan will go before Cumbria County Council in May (date tbc).

This article has been republished from Radiation Free Lakeland, Love the Land, by Marianne Birkby with her permission.)

Most Gaseous, Dangerous Pit in the Kingdom

These are strange, confusing days. There is all round praise being heaped on the plans to reopen Whitehaven coal mine on Cumbria’s West Coast, the most gaseous, dangerous pit in the Kingdom. In 1815, Sir Humphrey Davy’s invention of the miner’s safety lamp was first tested in Whitehaven Coking Coal Mine because of its reputation for “firedamp” (methane) and fatal explosions. By 1816 the Davey lamp was in full use in collieries around Great Britain. A letter of gratitude was written by Whitehaven Miners to Sir Humphrey Davy in 1816…. many of the miners signing the letter later lost their lives in the mine.

Honeycomb

The West Coast of Cumbria below both ground and sea is a labyrinthine honeycomb of mines. Not only coking coal but iron ore and many other minerals. This vast honeycomb of mines stretches to Sellafield. One of the earliest records of coal mining in West Cumberland dates to 1560, the last pit, the Haig, closed in 1986. There are old mine maps but these are far, far from complete. Understandably so, given the length of time that this area has been extensively mined. Many of the miners are still there in the dangerous honeycomb. Entombed in the same collapsed and sea inundated mine pits that the West Cumbria Mining Company wants to reopen.

 Infamous Copeland By Election

In the recent infamous Copeland by election the candidates without exception declared themselves to be “big fans” of reopening the West Cumbria Coal Mine. They did this in true Alice in Wonderland style, expressing concerns about climate change while praising the plan to reopen the coal mine. For many years UK citizens have been subjected to a constant bombardment of disingenuous propaganda: ‘nuclear power is the answer to climate change and coal is far worse than nuclear for the climate’. The purpose of this propaganda being that we should welcome nuclear with open arms, while shunning coal. . George Monbiot has consistently and aggressively set the pace: “Nuclear scare stories are a gift to the truly lethal coal industry.” Monbiot’s constant mantra in the last several years is that those who oppose nuclear power are uninformed, bigoted idiots. Now it appears that the idiots in Cumbria are being groomed to welcome both coal AND nuclear…….http://coalaction.org.uk/2017/03/coal-and-nuclear-a-honeycomb-of-lies-in-west-cumbria-guest-blog/

May 24, 2017 Posted by | politics, UK | Leave a comment

Faster than expected – rise in sea level, especially for Australian and other coastal cities

‘The great unknown’: New climate change data lifts the sea-level threat, SMH , Peter Hannam, 23 May 17   The giant ice sheets of Antarctica and Greenland are melting faster than scientists previously estimated, raising the prospect of faster sea level rise placing at risk low-lying areas of Sydney and similar exposed cities around the world.

New research, including from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), has lifted the “plausible” sea level rise by 2100 to as much as two metres to 2.7 metres.

That has superseded earlier estimates, such as the 2013 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), that placed the likely top range of sea level rise at about one metre if greenhouse gas emission rises continued unabated.

Those higher forecasts have now been included in new mapping by Coastal Risk Australia that combines the estimates with national high-tide data and the shape of our coastline.

The resulting maps show airports in Sydney, Brisbane and Hobart will be largely under water by 2100 if that two-metre rise happens.

Other areas at risk in Sydney from such a rise include Circular Quay, Wentworth Park, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Woolloomooloo and Rose Bay.  ………

Rising seas

NOAA estimates global mean sea levels have risen about 3.4 millimetres a year since 1993, roughly double the average rate of increase during the 20th century.

Even the last century’s pace of increase was the fastest in at least 2800 years, NOAA said.

Global warming is driving the increase in sea levels by melting land ice – such as glaciers and ice sheets – and from the thermal expansion of the warmer oceans.

John Church, a global sea level expert at the Climate Change Research Centre at the University of NSW, said other new research indicated Antarctica’s contribution to rising seas appears to particularly sensitive to carbon emissions rates – underscoring the urgency to reduce them…….http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/the-great-unknown-new-climate-change-data-lifts-the-sealevel-threat-20170522-gwa963.html

May 24, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, climate change, oceans | Leave a comment

Solar power -China, Tesla news, India’s push for renewables

Sustainability
World’s largest floating solar PV plant connected to grid in China
The world’s largest floating PV power plant, with the capacity of 40 MW is now connected to the grid.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/worlds-largest-floating-solar-pv-plant-connected-to-grid-in-china-49396/

How Tesla became the world’s top owner of solar assets
After a record-breaking year for the solar market, the total global installed base of operational PV systems surpassed 300 gigawatts.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/tesla-became-worlds-top-owner-solar-assets-43299/

India launches massive push for clean power, lighting, and cars.
While President Trump wants to revive America’s coal industry, India is embracing renewables, LED lighting, electric cars, and more.
http://www.dailyclimate.org/t/-995200128361602757

May 24, 2017 Posted by | 2 WORLD, renewable | Leave a comment

News on ever cheaper renewable energy

Small-scale renewables cheapest for rural Africa, says Dutch report.
Africa’s quest for full access to electricity needs governments to support small, off-grid projects that are typically disregarded by investors.
http://www.dailyclimate.org/t/-995200128361595
Solar cells more efficient thanks to new material standing on edge
Researchers from Lund University in Sweden and from Fudan University in China have successfully designed a new structural organization using the promising solar cell material perovskite. The study shows that solar cells increase in efficiency thanks to the material’s ability to self-organise by standing on edge.
http://www.enn.com/energy/article/51322

Off-the-shelf, power-generating clothes are almost here
UMass Amherst scientists introduce coating that turns fabrics into circuits
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2017-05/uoma-opc051817.php

EU energy auctions yield record low onshore wind prices
Two recent EU renewable energy auctions in Germany and Spain have yielded not only significant interest in onshore wind power, but record low prices.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/eu-energy-auctions-yield-record-low-onshore-wind-prices-17917/

May 24, 2017 Posted by | 2 WORLD, renewable | Leave a comment

India’s fast growth in renewable energy

FT 23rd May 2017, Until recently, the answer was overwhelmingly coal, which accounts for about 60 per cent of Indian power generation. Coal capacity has almost tripled in the past decade to 192GW and a further 65GW is under construction.

The fastest growth, however, is coming from renewables. Significant amounts of hydro and wind generation have already pushed the share of green energy to about 30 per cent. This is now being supplemented by rapid expansion in solar power. A landmark was reached this May when an auction to supply 500MW of new solar capacity at a 10,000 hectare facility on the edge of the Thar desert secured a record low price of Rs2.44 ($0.04) per kilowatt-hour — down two-thirds from three years ago and, for the first time, cheaper than coal-fired generation.

Plummeting costs have spurred forecasts that Indian solar capacity could double this year to 18GW, which would be more than six times greater than when Mr Modi’s government took power three years ago…..https://www.ft.com/content/a106c468-3567-11e7-99bd-13beb0903fa3

May 24, 2017 Posted by | India, renewable | Leave a comment

Call to Amazon boss: don’t be sucked in by the nuclear industry

Open Letter to Amazon’s Jeff Bezos About Ohio’s Dead Nukes http://progressive.org/dispatches/open-letter-to-amazon%E2%80%99s-jeff-bezos-about-ohio%E2%80%99s-dead-nukes/ by Harvey Wasserman

Dear Mr. Bezos, ear Mr. Bezos,

You have recently received some radioactive junk mail promoting the idea that your company, Amazon, should financially support Perry and Davis-Besse, the two financially dead atomic reactors in northern Ohio. It was a letter from “pro-nuke environmentalists,” the ultimate oxymoron in a world moving toward safe renewables, a transition embraced by your company’s wise commitment to go 100 percent renewable.

The nuclear advocates want you and your high-tech cohorts at Google, Apple, and Tesla to buy reactor-generated electricity at above-market prices so uninsured, competitively dead reactors at Perry and Davis-Besse can still dangerously operate.

Asking you to subsidize nukes is like asking you to bet your company on rotary dial telephones and new landline networks; to build more Edsels, Corvairs, and Pintos; to embrace thalidomide for pregnant women; to mass-produce buggy whips; and to convert your Internet business to a stand-alone fleet of small brick-and-mortar five and dimes.

As a long-time Ohioan, I’ve watched our “mistakes-by-the-lake” nuclear power plants spew unmitigated financial, ecological, and safety disaster. They’ve crippled Ohio’s economy and now could totally bury it.

Their owner, FirstEnergy, is on the brink of bankruptcy. In an obscene 1999 campaign, the company’s ancestors hustled Ohio legislators and regulators for a $9 billion bailout so these even-then-obsolete reactors could “compete” in a deregulated market. Now FirstEnergy wants another $300 million per year to subsidize nukes that still can’t compete with wind, solar, or gas.

The nuclear industry whines about renewables subsidies but hides its own, including public liability for reactors that can’t get private coverage. The public—including you and Amazon—will pay for the next reactor disaster.

Meanwhile, Germany (with the world’s fourth-largest economy) enjoys an “energiewende” that’s shutting all its nukes and converting to renewables. By leaping into the Solartopian Revolution, Germany is moving rapidly toward a stabilized energy supply based entirely on sustainable, Earth-based sources. So will Amazon as it converts to 100 percent actual renewables while totally avoiding any involvement with nuke power.

Switzerland has just voted to go a parallel route, with a referendum confirming its transition to a post-nuclear, 100 percent renewable economy.

California (with the world’s sixth-largest economy) is shutting its last two nukes at Diablo Canyon. State, utility, union, and actual environmental negotiators agreed to a “retain and retrain” program for plant workers and support for communities losing tax revenues. Many of us want Diablo to shut NOW, but all green advocates agree 100 percent of its output can be replaced with renewables.

The same is true for the Perry and Davis-Besse reactors. The winds in Lake Erie are uniquely powerful. Northern Ohio’s flat, breezy terrain hosts a fine transmission network, good access to urban markets, and communities that want the jobs and income turbines can provide. In response, FirstEnergy has worked to stop green energy wherever possible.

eanwhile, Germany (with the world’s fourth-largest economy) enjoys an “energiewende” that’s shutting all its nukes and converting to renewables. By leaping into the Solartopian Revolution, Germany is moving rapidly toward a stabilized energy supply based entirely on sustainable, Earth-based sources. So will Amazon as it converts to 100 percent actual renewables while totally avoiding any involvement with nuke power.

Switzerland has just voted to go a parallel route, with a referendum confirming its transition to a post-nuclear, 100 percent renewable economy.

California (with the world’s sixth-largest economy) is shutting its last two nukes at Diablo Canyon. State, utility, union, and actual environmental negotiators agreed to a “retain and retrain” program for plant workers and support for communities losing tax revenues. Many of us want Diablo to shut NOW, but all green advocates agree 100 percent of its output can be replaced with renewables.

The same is true for the Perry and Davis-Besse reactors. The winds in Lake Erie are uniquely powerful. Northern Ohio’s flat, breezy terrain hosts a fine transmission network, good access to urban markets, and communities that want the jobs and income turbines can provide. In response, FirstEnergy has worked to stop green energy wherever possible.

erry was damaged by an earthquake in 1986, prior to its opening. A top-level state commission concluded that the region cannot be evacuated in a nuclear disaster, prompting then-Governor Richard Celeste to withdraw state approval of Perry’s evacuation plans.

Davis-Besse is a Three Mile Island clone infamous worldwide for a boric acid leak that nearly caused Chernobyl/Fukushima-scale devastation to our precious Great Lakes.

Now thirty-nine years old, Davis-Besse’s shield building is crumbling and its innards are embrittled.

The idea that these reactors are “zero-carbon” is fiction. All spew radioactive hot water and steam into the ecosphere. Nuke fuel production emits carbon.

The latest Hanford nuke tunnel collapse, and the 2014 explosion at New Mexico’s Waste Isolation Pilot Project, confirm the impossibility of radwaste management. The price tag for Nevada’s proposed Yucca Mountain dump was estimated at $96 billion in 2008. Based on decades of industry experience, that number could end up being much larger.

Thus the hugely radioactive fuel rods and other radwaste produced at Perry and Davis-Besse are likely to sit on site forever—-certainly long after FirstEnergy disappears into bankruptcy protection.

But if you continue Amazon’s path to 100 percent real renewables, and don’t buy above-market electricity from competitively dead reactors, you’ll do fine.

Good luck on your Solartopian conversion, and No Nukes in Ohio, or anywhere on this Earth.

Harvey Wasserman’s Solartopia! Our Green Powered Earth is available at www.solartopia.org.

May 24, 2017 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Chinese marine research working with Australia’s CSIRO to study climate

Science is the winner from alliance, PETER BOYER, Mercury May 23, 2017 CSIRO is back in town and back on the world climate research stage. That was the real news in yesterday’s welcome announcement of a new Hobart-based Centre for Southern Hemisphere Oceans Research.

May 24, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, climate change | Leave a comment

Offshore wind energy booming in Britain

Telegraph 21st May 2017, The sound made by 100 tonnes of steel and carbon fibre rotating 400 feet overhead is surprisingly understated. Each whoosh of the 260 foot blades spans an area the size of the London Eye and generates enough electricity to power the average British home for 24 hours.

There are 32 of these 8MW turbines in the second phase of Dong Energy’s Burbo Bank wind farm spinning off the Merseyside coast. They are the most powerful ever, dotting an area the size of almost 6,000 football pitches within the Irish Sea, each one a beacon of Britain’s global dominance in the booming offshore wind industry.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/05/21/britains-wind-turbines-catch-breeze-rising-industry/

Jersey Evening Post 22nd May 2017, A FLOATING offshore wind farm that would cost £108 million to install is currently the frontrunner in work to develop renewable energy in Guernsey. A preliminary feasibility study was released this week and now more equipment will be installed at Mont Cuet, in the north of Guernsey, to help move the project forward.

The study by Xodus Group concluded that a 30MW offshore wind project could be viable. It shortlisted three preferred sites for five turbines. One option is 5km off Guernsey’s north coast and another is 15km away, west of Schole Bank, between Guernsey and Alderney. The third – the only floating option – is 25km north-west of the island. The offshore floating option is the most costly, but is seen as preferable because of the visual impact of the other two which have estimated capital costs of £68.23m and £80.98m respectively.  http://jerseyeveningpost.com/news/2017/05/22/guernsey-considers-floating-offshore-wind-farm/

May 24, 2017 Posted by | renewable, UK | Leave a comment

British solar power surge. Batteries becoming cheaper

FT 23rd May 2017 On May 10, the UK reached a fresh high for the amount of electricity generated by solar. Early on that Wednesday afternoon, solar output hit 8.5 gigawatts, according to Electric Insights, a website that tracks
Britain’s power.

At its peak, the green energy source was supplying more than 22 per cent of the 38GW being handled by the national grid, as solar for some hours exceeded the steady output from the UK’s fleet of nuclear power stations. The growing contribution of green energy to grids — particularly wind and solar — brings with it the problem of managing the
unpredictability and intermittency of these supplies.

Storage is still a very small part of the energy industry but it is developing quickly both at the domestic level — where homeowners can use batteries in tandem with solar panels on their roofs — and on a much larger scale, with the development of battery parks aimed at smoothing supplies to the grid. The popularity of storage systems to capture the electricity generated by domestic solar panels is helped by a generous subsidy in Germany that helps homeowners meet the initial costs of buying a battery, which is also true of other countries.

While costs of batteries are coming down, Mr Wilkinson acknowledges that in most cases “incentives are required” to expand the market for battery storage to help balance the grid. “Costs have come down dramatically but there is still a long way to go before they are going to be truly embedded everywhere in the grid and we’ll see huge volumes of them,” Mr Wilkinson says. Meanwhile, growth in the electric vehicle market has helped lower costs and improve the design of lithium-ion batteries. A battery pack that can be used in an electric vehicle has fallen from $1,000 per kilowatt hour in 2010 to $273 per kWh last year, according to BNEF, which is forecasting a further 73 per cent fall in costs by 2030.
https://www.ft.com/content/a6e01984-3567-11e7-99bd-13beb0903fa3

May 24, 2017 Posted by | renewable, UK | Leave a comment

British charity SolarAid works with Chinese solar giant to provide cheap, clean power in Africa

FT 22nd May 2017, A British start-up has helped a Chinese solar power giant provide cheap, clean power across Africa with a $5 light.The SM100, which claims to be the cheapest solar light in the world, was designed by Manchester-based Inventid, formed by two graduates in 2012.

Some 600m people in African countries without electricity rely on kerosene storm lamps, which are expensive to run and produce smoke that is linked to respiratory diseases, cataracts and house fires. The hand-sized SM100 can run for eight hours when fully charged and is twice as bright as kerosene.

SolarAid, a charity, developed it in collaboration with Yingli, the solar panel manufacturer. SolarAid’s trading subsidiary SunnyMoney has sold 1.9m other solar lights in Africa over the past decade but they retail for up to twice the price of the new light. After trialling 9,000 of the lights in three countries, the new light is now on sale. The SM100 is an exemplar product for the new £83m Design Museum’s Design Ventura education programme. In March, the SM100 light won silver in the 2017 Design for So ciety and Design for Sustainability categories at the European Product Design Awards.
https://www.ft.com/content/36226fbe-3c7c-11e7-821a-6027b8a20f23

May 24, 2017 Posted by | AFRICA, decentralised | Leave a comment

China cancelling many coal mines, going all out for solar power

In September 2016, China’s cancelled more than 103 under-construction and planned coal-fired power plants, a total of 120 gigawatt hours (GWh) of capacity. In March this year, premier Li Keqiang announced that an additional 50GWh would be shut down or postponed. The coal power stopped in China so far is equivalent to the combined coal power capacity of the UK and Spain. China’s era of one coal-fired station a week is over.

China’s covering a Football field with Solar Panels Every Hour in Quest to End Coal,https://www.juancole.com/2017/05/chinas-covering-football.html  | May. 10, 2017 By Janet Xuanli Liao | (The Conversation) | – –

China’s remarkable growth over the past three decades has elevated it to global superpower status. But its economic miracle has also attracted attention for the wrong reasons: the country is now the world’s largest energy consumer, oil importer, and CO₂ emitter. It led to the line that China builds a new coal-fired power station each week being faithfully and unquestioningly repeated. However, this is no longer a fair reflection of the country’s energy situation.The Conversation

It’s true that China consumes around a quarter of the world’s total primary energy and more than half its coal. This was once a necessity. The “open door” policy to foreign investment that began in the late 1970s led to rapid economic growth and, in turn, a spectacular rise in energy demand. Electricity consumption in China rose from just 232 kilowatt hours (KWh) in 1978 to nearly 6,000 terawatt hours (TWh) today – that is, six thousand billion kilowatt hours – and to keep up with demand, China needed coal.

However, coal as a proportion of China’s energy mix peaked at 75% in the late 1980s and by 2016 it had fallen to 62%, the lowest since the establishment of the People’s Republic in 1949. This was a result of Beijing taking serious measures in recent years to cut coal, in order to reduce domestic pollution and to tackle climate change.

One of these measures was the Top-1,000 Enterprises Energy-Saving Programme. Launched in 2006, the programme targeted the country’s largest energy-consuming firms in sectors like steel, petrochemicals, cement, and textiles. Together, these 1,000 enterprises accounted for a third of the nation’s energy consumption. The programme was quite effective and contributed towards China’s efforts to reduce its energy consumption per unit of GDP.

The government has also taken action to slow the country’s economic growth and set lower annual rate of GDP growth at 6.5% in the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020), against 9-10% in the previous three decades.

Pollution protests

With economic growth slowing and the heaviest polluters being forced to use less energy, coal generation was a natural choice to cut back. By this point, people in China were well aware of the problem with coal. And from the mid-2000s the pollution problem was becoming too serious to ignore, and civil society groups began to protest. Local authorities initially resisted the government’s “war on pollution” but last year brought about some of the worst smog ever recorded in China and the strongest response yet from the central authorities.

In September 2016, China’s cancelled more than 103 under-construction and planned coal-fired power plants, a total of 120 gigawatt hours (GWh) of capacity. In March this year, premier Li Keqiang announced that an additional 50GWh would be shut down or postponed. The coal power stopped in China so far is equivalent to the combined coal power capacity of the UK and Spain. China’s era of one coal-fired station a week is over.

A commitment to cutting emissions

Beijing’s long-standing opposition to international climate change obligations is well-known, at least prior to the 2015 UN conference in Paris. But things are changing. Though China’s coal capacity may yet increase slightly over the next few years, any growth will be dwarfed by planned investment in solar, wind and nuclear.

China is now the world’s largest backer of green energy, accounting for 17% of global investment in the sector. According to Greenpeace, it installed an average of more than one wind turbine every hour of every day in 2015. It also covered the equivalent of one soccer field with solar panels every hour, action that may allow China to meet its 2020 goals for solar installation two years ahead of schedule. By 2030 it is hoped that cleaner energy will help reduce China’s CO₂ emissions by 54% from 2010 levels.

This is good news because the inescapable fact is that efforts to mitigate climate change are doomed to fail if the Chinese do not get on board. Compared with other countries, China still has a long way to go. Britain, for instance, recently managed a day without coal for the first time in more than 130 years, while other countries have drastically cut their carbon footprint.

However, energy policy is, as with most aspects of Chinese life, more complicated and more susceptible to internal and external pressures than many observers believe. The reaction of the Chinese leadership to these pressures gives us hope that the country can free itself of dirty coal, and that this day may come sooner rather than later.

Janet Xuanli Liao, Senior Lecturer in International Relations and Energy Security Studies, University of Dundee

May 24, 2017 Posted by | China, renewable | Leave a comment

Timeline of the decline of South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma

The descent of Jacob Zuma in 31 steps and counting, Daily Maverick, KAVISHA PILLAY AND MARK HEYWOOD, SOUTH AFRICA, 23 MAY 2017

Last week, the Constitutional Court heard arguments that Parliament should either allow for, or be ordered to conduct, a secret ballot when MPs are voting in a motion of no confidence against President Jacob Zuma. The hearing came after a weekend of storms covered large parts of the country, marking the start of winter. By contrast the President’s winter started way before the end of summer. He now seems enmeshed in a hurricane of discontent.

  Below is a timeline of exactly two months and 31 significant developments leading up to and shortly after the court hearing. It shows how the President and his cronies have been taking punches from all corners, with groups from every sector of society – including the ANC itself – now calling on the President to step down amidst allegations of corruption and state capture. The space for looting the state appears to be closing. The fight back against state capture is well under way. But with the pace of politics accelerating it won’t be over until either Parliament or the ANC itself removes Zuma and his associates from office.

17 March:……..

28 March…..

29 March:…..   to 23 May…….

The timeline we have laid out is growing by the day. President Zuma’s responses – claiming the country is not in crisis – suggest that he is oblivious to his loss of power and influence. They are not a sign of strength but a diagnosis of denialism. They point to a President who, like his colleague across the Limpopo River, is now so punch-drunk that he is unable to recognise the reality of the crisis he has provoked. However, weakened though he and his faction may be, the decisive punch must still be landed.

In this regard the next two months may prove decisive. Whilst the judgment of the Constitutional Court will be hugely important in setting the rules for the vote of no confidence its outcome will be a gauge of the commitment of the ANC to the Constitution versus its commitment to itself. It will be a test as to whether its current leaders have the moral courage of their forebears. If the ANC wants to avoid the humiliation of its President in Parliament its last and only alternative is to remove him at the ANC NEC meeting on the 26-28 of May.

We will all we watching. We will be hoping. We will be expecting you to do the right thing.

Our futures depend on it. DM   

https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2017-05-23-op-ed-the-descent-of-jacob-zuma-in-31-steps-and-counting/#.WSUEFpKGPGg

May 24, 2017 Posted by | politics, South Africa | Leave a comment