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Reflections of Opal and Why Trump’s Response to Maria’s Monumental Strike on Puerto Rico is, Thus Far, Vastly Inadequate


As a veteran of the U.S. Army National Guard, I’ve responded to my fair share of natural disasters. And having responded to some of the costliest and most devastating storms to strike the U.S. in the 90s, I know what it means when damage estimates, as they do now with Maria, hit a range of 30-95 billion dollars. When you get reports that evacuees are fleeing Puerto Rico with many saying they will never return.

It means total devastation of infrastructure requiring an equally unprecedented level of response to effectively manage a disaster of a class that we are not presently used to dealing with. And without an effective response, you get exactly what we are seeing now — refugees fleeing what has become, through neglect, a sacrifice zone.

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September 29, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Official US Citizens Advisory Board Recommends Against the Import of German High Level Nuclear Waste For Processing and Dumping

Mining Awareness +

Germany needs to make up its mind. If it wants the US to become its nuclear dumping ground then it should give right of return to the Americans of German origin, and they can start with Donald Trump whose father was made in Germany. The US can’t be the dumping ground for both the world’s excess and unwanted peoples and unwanted nuclear waste, though it is. Obama and his administration ran all over Europe and the world collecting nuclear waste from terrorist nations such as Sweden and Switzerland, pretending it was about non-proliferation. Germany has already burnt nuclear waste in a very substandard incinerator in Tennessee. Why didn’t they burn it in Germany or in Switzerland? Trump is in tight with the nuclear waste industry – Doug Kimmelman of Energy Solutions was a Trump fundraiser-large donor and apparently with Holtec-Kris Singh (large donor and friend to Trump’s UN Ambassador Nikki…

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September 29, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

September 29 Energy News



¶ “4 Utilities Betting Billions on Renewable Energy” • Utilities will soon be facing more disruption than they have ever seen. Customers are switching to solar and storage. The wholesale power markets being disrupted by new technology. To adapt, utilities are spending billions to build or buy renewable energy power plants. [Motley Fool]

Solar panels at dusk (Photo: Getty Images)

¶ “Trump officials have no clue how to rebuild Puerto Rico’s grid. But we do.” • Microgrids built around cheap renewable power and battery storage are now the fastest and cheapest way to restore power, and they build resilience. Energy Secretary Rick Perry is proposing small modular nuclear reactors, which might come in the mid 2020s. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “Smoke, mirrors and coal dust” • Something akin to a poor magic show is going on in Eurelectric with their latest attempt to show that handing over taxpayer…

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September 29, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A worse fear? A nuclear accident in North Korea, – and it could trigger a nuclear war

The nuclear accident that could be worse than a North Korean attack

But it’s not the fear of a deliberate nuclear attack that has scholars and experts in East Asia most worried, but something totally accidental.

Recent sanctions against North Korea have been designed not only to cripple the country’s economy, but to stop them gaining the equipment needed to make more nuclear weapons.

 But those same sanctions could prevent North Korea getting the supplies they need to maintain their existing nuclear facilities.

“There could be a nuclear accident, and that could be a nuclear weapon exploding and releasing radiation, or it could be the nuclear facilities breaking down and causing a Fukushima-style radiation leak,” Stephen Nagy of Tokyo’s International Christian University told

“If you think about where North Korea is, that radiation would spread into northeast China, probably go to South Korea, and it would affect parts of Japan as well.”

Most experts agree that North Korea simply wants a nuclear bomb as a deterrent to prevent other nations bombing or invading them. And the purpose of their various weapons tests is a demonstration not of what they will do, but of what they can do.

Dr Nagy said most people in Tokyo are “not so concerned about an actual attack”. “They worry about a launch over Japan, and what happens if it falls into Japan accidentally?” he said. “What happens if that weapon does carry a nuclear weapon and there’s an accident?”

It’s not an unreasonable concern, though North Korea is unlikely to do something so provocative as firing a nuclear weapon over another country.

But Pyongyang has fired two intercontinental ballistic missiles over Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido, a literal shot across the bow as a sabre-rattling method.”If a launch falls down on Japan, does that mean that the United States goes to war?” Dr Nagy said. “Does that mean the nuclear fallout falls on Japan?”

Nuclear fallout can be far-reaching and devastating. The Chernobyl meltdown of 1986 spread a cloud of radiation stretching from Iran to Ireland.

North Korea is not as geographically isolated as many people think. The sprawling metropolis of Seoul has a population of 25 million and is walking distance from the border. And a serious nuclear accident in North Korea could spread radiation across the most heavily populated part of the world, with Beijing, Shanghai, Tokyo and Vladivostok certainly within range.

As with all nuclear meltdowns, the extent of the radioactive damage is based on the strength and direction of the wind.

There are already radiation fears stemming from North Korea’s detonation site, the mountain of Punggye-ri.  Chinese scientist Wang Naiyan flagged the possibility the mountain could collapse, leaking radioactive material into the atmosphere.

Perhaps even more concerning is the prospect of an accidental detonation of a nuclear bomb on North Korean soil.

A 250-kiloton detonation would be so broad and destructive that it would be difficult to determine the cause.

So it is entirely possible an accidental explosion would be indistinguishable from a nuclear attack from the United States, triggering a nuclear war.

September 29, 2017 Posted by | North Korea, safety | Leave a comment

Is the UK FRACKING Agenda a Red Herring for Nuclear Waste Disposal?

Ian R Crane
Published on 28 Sep 2017

THURS 28th Sept 2017 – LIVE UPDATE from THIRD ENERGY’s FRACK Pad in Kirby Misperton, North Yorks

Arrested on Monday for filming at Kirby Misperton, Ian was later released without Charge, Ian is now back at the Kirby Misperton Protection Camp, and live streaming an important video which raises the very real spectre of a dangerous ulterior agenda lurking behind the unconventional gas play. He had previously alluded to this possibility three years ago on an episode of FRACKING NIGHTMARE, where he asked whether or not the UK fracking agenda is really a red herring, whereby the real agenda here is to create a network of ‘Deep Borehole Repositories’ for the disposal of toxic nuclear waste? The evidence just keeps on mounting!!!

September 29, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Former CIA analyst says that USA has no other choice: must accept a nuclear North Korea

No choice for US but to accept a nuclear North Korea, ex-CIA analyst says
28 Sept 17,US acceptance of a nuclear North Korea might include a nuclear-armed South Korea, said Su Mi Terry, who served under former US president George W. Bush. 
The US has no choice but to accept the nuclearisation of North Korea and China may need to live with a South Korea that is nuclear-armed or at least more heavily weaponised than the US’s ally is now, said a northeast Asia analyst formerly with the CIA.

US acceptance of a nuclear North Korea would need to come with military measures that include at minimum a robust missile defence system in South Korea regardless of how China might react to such a scenario, Su Mi Terry, who served as a senior North Korea analyst in the CIA under former President George W. Bush, told the South China Morning Post.

“We can be creative about containment and deterrence,” Terry, now a senior adviser at Bower Group Asia, a consultancy specialising in Asia-Pacific issues, said in an interview.

A containment and deterrence policy “doesn’t have to mean that we just sit around and say ‘that’s OK’. It may mean missile defence. It may mean ultimately after North Korea acquires its capability to attack the United States with a nuclear-tipped ICBM, it may mean that South Korea will have to go nuclear”.

Terry’s remarks reflect what some analysts are saying about realistic outcomes for the stand-off on the Korean Peninsula, but run counter to the official line in Washington and Beijing.

While the US and China have cooperated on passing unanimously a series of sanctions against Pyongyang and condemnations of the country’s nuclear weapons programme, the deployment of a US missile defence system in South Korea has stirred China’s anger.

In addition to her role at Bower Group, Terry is also a senior research scholar at the Columbia University’s Weatherhead East Asian Institute

China has consistently opposed the deployment of the US’s Terminal High Altitude Defense (THAAD) system in South Korea, saying it would do little to deter the missile threat from North Korea while allowing the US military to use its radar to look deep into China’s territory and at its missile systems.

The US and South Korea have resisted such calls, arguing that THAAD is a defensive system only. Yet, an effective missile defence for South Korea would likely require even more than the existing THAAD deployment.

The likelihood that the US and China will clash over containment and deterrence options has risen following a volley of militaristic threats between US President Donald Trump and Kim.

North Korea “will have to continue with the provocations, they will have to continue and complete their [nuclear] programme because Kim Jong-un has made it personal and Trump has made it personal”, Terry said.

“You see Kim Jong-un’s statement which came out after Trump made his UN speech. I’ve never seen anything like that, where he says he takes it personally, writing in the first person on the front page of Rodong Shimbun (an official North Korean government newspaper) and putting his name to it. There’s no way Kim Jong-un is going to back down from that. If he was going to back down he would not have made it so personal.”

Terry was referring to Kim’s response to a threat Trump made in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly last week to “totally destroy” North Korea. Kim said in his response carried by state media: “I will surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged US dotard with fire.”

China and the US remain engaged in finding a solution to their concerns around North Korea, with both sides aiming for denuclearisation.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson left Washington for Beijing on Thursday and will be there until October 1 for talks that will include Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile programmes.

Tillerson and his Chinese counterparts “will discuss a range of issues, including [President Donald Trump’s] planned travel to the region, the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula and trade and investment”, the US State Department said in an announcement earlier this week.

September 29, 2017 Posted by | North Korea, politics international, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Chance of nuclear war with North Korea? 10% Conventional war 20-30% – says ex NAT O military chief

Former NATO military chief: there’s a 10% chance of nuclear war with North Korea
And a 20-30% chance of a conventional one. 
Vox  by Retired Navy Adm. James Stavridis spent 37 years in the military, including four years as the supreme allied commander of NATO. Hillary Clinton vetted him as a possible running mate. President-elect Donald Trump considered naming him secretary of state. He is a serious man, and about as far from an armchair pundit as it’s possible to be.

And that’s precisely what makes his assessment of the escalating standoff with North Korea so jarring. Stavridis believes there’s at least a 10 percent chance of a nuclear war between the US and North Korea, and a 20 to 30 percent chance of a conventional, but still bloody, conflict.

“I think we are closer to a significant exchange of ordnance than we have been since the end of the Cold War on the Korean peninsula,” he said during a panel I moderated Tuesday at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perry World House.

His estimate of the potential death toll from even a nonnuclear war with North Korea is just as striking. North Korea has at least 11,000 artillery pieces trained on Seoul, South Korea’s capital of 25 million people, and would be certain to use them during any conflict. The US would be just as certain to mount a sustained bombing campaign to destroy those artillery pieces as quickly as possible.

The result? “It’s hard for me to see less than 500,000 to 1 million people, and I think that’s a conservative estimate,” he said.

Remember: That’s assuming North Korea doesn’t use its arsenal of nuclear weapons, which can already hit Seoul and much of Japan.

Speaking at the same event, Michèle Flournoy, formerly the No. 3 official at the Pentagon in the Obama administration, said Trump’s harsh rhetoric toward Pyongyang — which has included deriding North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as “Little Rocket Man” — created the real risk of an accidental war between the two countries.

“My worry is that all of this heated rhetoric has really charged the environment so that it’s much more likely now that one side or the other will misread what was intended as a show of commitment or a show of force,” she said. “It could be the basis of a miscalculation that actually starts a war that wasn’t intended at that moment.”…….

Here’s why the odds of war with North Korea are rising

Both Stavridis and Flournoy see Kim as a fundamentally rational leader whose overriding goals are to ensure the survival of his regime and his personal control over North Korea. Nuclear weapons, in Flournoy’s words, are “the ace that he could play if there was a conflict to say, ‘Stop, you’re not going to take me out without risking nuclear war.’”

Stavridis stressed on the panel that the odds were still against an open military conflict with North Korea, let alone nuclear war. But he also made clear that both were definitely possible — and that the odds were rising……..

September 29, 2017 Posted by | EUROPE, North Korea, politics international, weapons and war | Leave a comment

If USA withdraws from nuclear agreement, Iran would consider dropping out, too

Iran may drop nuclear deal if U.S. withdraws, foreign minister tells al Jazeera, Reuters Staff, 28 Sept 17
ANKARA (Reuters) – Iran may abandon the nuclear deal it reached with six major powers if the United States decides to withdraw from it, Iranian foreign minister told Qatar’s al Jazeera TV in New York.

U.S. President Donald Trump has called the 2015 deal an “embarrassment”. The deal is supported by the other major powers that negotiated it with Iran and its collapse could trigger a regional arms race and worsen tensions in the Middle East.

“If Washington decides to pull out of the deal, Iran has the option of withdrawal and other options,” al Jazeera TV wrote on its Twitter feed, quoting Mohammad Javad Zarif.

“Washington will be in a better position if it remains committed to the deal,” the network quoted Zarif as saying.

Al Jazeera deleted an earlier tweet citing Zarif as saying that if Washington withdrew from the deal Iran would do so too, rather than just having the option to do so, after an Iranian official said Zarif had been misquoted.

Trump is considering whether the accord serves U.S. security interests. He faces a mid-October deadline for certifying that Iran is complying with the pact…….

If Trump, who has called the accord “the worst deal ever negotiated”, does not recertify it by Oct. 16, Congress has 60 days to decide whether to reimpose sanctions suspended under the accord.

September 29, 2017 Posted by | Iran, politics international | Leave a comment

Most Americans oppose pre-emptive strike on North Korea: they trust military, not Trump

Poll: Far more trust generals than Trump on N. Korea, while two-thirds oppose preemptive strike, WP,  September 24, 17,  Two-thirds of Americans oppose launching a preemptive military strike against North Korea, with a majority trusting the U.S. military to handle the escalating nuclear crisis responsibly but not President Trump, a new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds.

Roughly three-quarters of the public supports tougher economic sanctions on North Korea in an attempt to persuade it to give up its nuclear weapons, while just about one-third think the United States should offer the isolated country foreign aid or other incentives.

The Post-ABC poll finds 37 percent of adults trust Trump either “a great deal” or “a good amount” to responsibly handle the situation with North Korea, while 42 percent trust the commander in chief “not at all.” By comparison, 72 percent trust U.S. military leaders, including 43 percent saying they trust them “a great deal.”

A scant 8 percent of Americans surveyed think North Korean leader Kim Jong Un can act responsibly.

 [Read full poll results | How the poll was conducted]

September 29, 2017 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

Hundreds of $billions a year – the hidden costs of climate change

Hidden Costs of Climate Change Running Hundreds of Billions a YearA new report warns of a high price tag on the impacts of global warming, from storm damage to health costs. But solutions can provide better value, the authors say. National Geographic   

Extreme weather, made worse by climate change, along with the health impacts of burning fossil fuels, has cost the U.S. economy at least $240 billion a year over the past ten years, a new report has found.

And yet this does not include this past month’s three major hurricanes or 76 wildfires in nine Western states. Those economic losses alone are estimated to top $300 billion, the report notes. Putting it in perspective, $300 billion is enough money to provide free tuition for the 13.5 million U.S. students enrolled in public colleges and universities for four years.

In the coming decade, economic losses from extreme weather combined with the health costs of air pollution spiral upward to at least $360 billion annually, potentially crippling U.S. economic growth, according to this new report, The Economic Case for Climate Action in the United States, published online Thursday by the Universal Ecological Fund.

September 29, 2017 Posted by | climate change, USA | Leave a comment

Fukushima Decontamination Work Racket Yakuza Arrested

28 sept yakuza decontamination business.pngBags containing debris from decontamination work are piled up in a Bags containing debris from decontamination work are piled up in a tentative storing site in Naraha, Fukushima Prefecture. The location pictured is not where the workers in the article were operating.

Yakuza arrested in Fukushima decontamination work racket

Three men, including a yakuza gang boss affiliated with Yamaguchi-gumi, Japan’s largest crime syndicate, have been arrested on suspicion of illegally supplying workers for government-commissioned decontamination work related to the 2011 Fukushima nuclear power plant accident.

The three are yakuza group leader Hidenobu Maruta, 48, of Tokyo’s Katsushika Ward, construction company executive Shigeki Yamamura, 59, of Koriyama, Fukushima Prefecture, and Akio Kitano, 51, an unemployed resident of Saitama, Tokyo police announced Sept. 27.

All three deny the allegations of employment brokering without a license, a violation of the Employment Security Law, and intermediate exploitation, which is banned under the Labor Standards Law.

Maruta and Yamamura are accused of supplying two workers from January 2015 to March 2016 to a sub-subcontractor who carries out decontamination operations for the government project, and receiving 160,000 yen ($1,430) together in commission without consent from the labor ministry.

The cleanup work was conducted in Tomioka, Fukushima Prefecture.

Maruta and Kitano are suspected of taking commission amounting to about 920,000 yen from the wages of those two workers, according to the police department in charge of organized crime.

The three suspects are said to have shared cut of 2,000 yen to 3,000 yen from each of the workers’ 16,000-yen daily wage.

Further to the exploitation of the aforementioned two workers, the suspects are believed to have received about 10 million yen collectively through brokering about 10 other workers to the sub-subcontractor.

3 nabbed over alleged illicit job mediation for Fukushima cleanup workers

Police on Sept. 27 arrested three people, including a high-ranking member of a gang affiliated with the Yamaguchi-gumi crime syndicate, on suspicion of illicitly introducing workers to other businesses to engage in Fukushima decontamination work.

The three suspects, including a gang member in his 40s, were arrested on suspicion of violating the Employment Security Act by mediating in paid work without permission. Police believe that the service charges the suspects received were being used to fund gang activities.

Investigators said that the three are suspected of having introduced decontamination workers to other businesses since 2014 and charging introduction fees, despite lacking permission from the Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare that is required by law.

A consulting company based in Tokyo’s Nerima Ward that was effectively run by the suspects’ gang dispatched workers to decontamination zones through other businesses. The workers reportedly engaged in decontamination work in Fukushima Prefecture.

In January 2013, Yamagata Prefectural Police arrested a high-ranking member of a gang affiliated with the Sumiyoshi-kai crime syndicate on suspicion of violating the worker dispatch law in connection with the dispatch of workers engaging in Fukushima-related decontamination work.

September 29, 2017 Posted by | Fukushima 2017 | , , , | Leave a comment

EU to lift import curbs on rice from Fukushima, more deals likely

european commission fuk rice 27 sept 2017.pngA farmer plants rice seedlings in Minami-Soma, Fukushima Prefecture, in May


The European Commission is set to relax import restrictions on rice from Fukushima Prefecture that were imposed after the 2011 nuclear disaster, sources said.

The import curbs could be eased as early as this year and prompt other countries, including major markets like China, to follow suit, the sources added.

In addition to rice from Fukushima Prefecture, the EU is expected to remove restrictions on some seafood products from Iwate, Miyagi and other prefectures.

All restrictions on products from Akita Prefecture will likely also be lifted, thereby abolishing all curbs on rice grown in Japan.

The United States on Sept. 22 decided to allow imports of milk and dairy products from Fukushima, Iwate, Miyagi, Tochigi and Gunma prefectures without inspection certificates stating they are free of radioactive materials.

The EU move follows a general agreement on an economic partnership in July, during which EU officials informed Japan of plans to relax import restrictions on agricultural products. The two sides have been discussing the issue since then.

September 29, 2017 Posted by | Fukushima 2017 | , , | 2 Comments

Thin Lichen Exhibits Remarkable Radioactivity Bioaccumulation in Iwate



Via Marco Kaltofen

From our sampling with Fairwinds in Iitate, Japan; thin layer of lichen exhibits remarkable bioaccumulation of environmental radioactivity.

September 29, 2017 Posted by | Fukushima 2017 | , , , | Leave a comment

Pictures show the tragedy of Russian villages contaminated by 1957 nuclear explosion

‘Left To Die As Guinea Pigs’: Tatar Village Struggles On, 60 Years After Nuclear Catastrophe, September 28, 2017  An explosion at a Soviet nuclear plant 1,400 kilometers east of Moscow remains the world’s third-largest nuclear disaster, after Chernobyl and Fukushima. At the time, in 1957, it was the worst ever. Sixty years on, nearby Tatar villagers are still struggling for official recognition of their plight. (RFE/RL’s Tatar-Bashkir Service) TEXTS BELOW DESCRIBE EACH OF THE EXCELLENT PICTURES ON THE ORIGINAL

The sign says “Danger Zone.” An explosion on September 29, 1957, contaminated an area of 23,000 square kilometers and exposed more than 270,000 people to significant levels of radiation.

The village of Karabolka is 30 kilometers from the Mayak nuclear plant, where the explosion occurred. For decades afterwards, it did not appear on maps, only reappearing 20 years ago. But life there continued.

Gulshara Ismagilova has lived in Karabolka all her life. She is campaigning for official recognition for the suffering of the villagers. Rates of cancer and genetic abnormalities here are significantly higher than the national average. “We are all handicapped here,” she says.

These are Ismagilova’s relatives who have died over the last 60 years. It includes an aunt, her mother, and her brother, who all died of cancer. Ismagilova herself has liver cancer.

In 1957, the village had about 4,000 residents; in 2010, just 423. The village had two distinct parts: a mostly Tatar part, which was not evacuated, and a mostly Russian part, which was. Some locals say they were used in an experiment on the effects of radiation.

The village has eight cemeteries. Seven of them are a resting place for residents who died of cancer. Children here are often born with cancer and die before reaching adulthood.

Only Muslims are buried here. Following their beliefs, some relatives prevent autopsies being performed. This can prevent some deaths being classified as cancer-related.

A pile of coffins at the ready. Families usually bury their dead by noon of the day following their death. “People don’t know what to eat and how to survive,” Ismagilova says. “They have been left here to die as guinea pigs.”

This house has a pile of firewood outside. In the 1990s, local people were warned that wood stored radiation and should not be used for burning. But the village was not connected to a gas supply until 2016.

A water pump outside a house. “The authorities prohibited drinking water from local wells but couldn’t arrange supplies of clean water. A couple of months later, they took samples and said the local water was good enough to drink,” says Ismagilova.

A Greenpeace report 10 years ago said the Mayak site was “one of the most radioactive places on Earth.” It added that thousands of people in surrounding towns and villages still lived on contaminated land

September 29, 2017 Posted by | environment, Russia, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Britain’s hydrogen nuclear bomb tests in Pacific Kiribati not acknowledged – no compensation for affected islanders

Author challenges British denial over Pacific nuclear legacy The author of a new book on Pacific nuclear weapons testing says he hopes it will shed more light on Britain’s tests in the region. US and French nuclear tests at Bikini atoll in the Marshall Islands and Murorua and Fangataufa atolls in Tahiti feature regularly in discussions about the environmental and social legacy of Pacific nuclear testing.

But the author Nic McLellan says the fallout of Britain’s hydrogen bomb tests at Kiritimati island in Kiribati isn’t as well documented.

Mr McLellan says unlike the US and France, Britain refuses to accept any responsibility for the negative impacts of its tests on the health of local men, women and children as well as its own soldiers and those from Fiji and New Zealand who observed the tests.

“The British of course tested in my own country Australia with atomic weapons and yet the hydrogen bomb tests in Kiribati are not very well known. And so the book is compiling a lot of information gathered and presents portraits of people who are opposed to the tests. It is really important to recognise that in the 1950s there was widespread opposition to these tests going ahead.”

September 29, 2017 Posted by | UK, weapons and war | Leave a comment