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Donald Trump reopens the radioactive nightmare

Ken, 22 July 18 Trump has whole heartedly opened up the radioactive nightmare in America again.  Uranium Mining in the Grand canyon. Into water that supplies much of the western United States.

This excerpt is from Majias Blog

“””In 2017 UR Energy’s Lost Creek mine in Wyoming had a terrible accident, described in the headline below as one of the worst recorded uranium mine spills, although trivialized in impact as not posing a threat:
Heather Richards (2017, September 8). Wyoming uranium mine spill one of the largest recorded in U.S.; officials say it does not pose a threat. Star Tribune:https://trib.com/business/energy/wyoming-uranium-mine-spill-one-of-the-largest-recorded-in/article_563faf2a-4093-5749-aaea-38f1f6b8efb0.html

The Lost Creek uranium mine north of Rawlins shut down operations Wednesday just weeks after reporting one of the largest spills of uranium injection fluid ever recorded in the U.S.

The spill was contained on site and is not a human health hazard, according to federal regulators. The spilled fluid had not yet been pumped into the uranium ore beneath the surface. Radioactive metal contained in the fluid was naturally occurring.

The mine, owned by Littleton, Colorado-based Ur-Energy, reported an Aug. 19 spill of 188,000 gallons of pre-injection fluid at Lost Creek. Another spill of 10,000 gallons of pre-injection fluid at Lost Creek on Tuesday was reported to federal regulators.
See how the article trivializes impact by stating that the radioactive metal contained in the spilled fluid was “naturally occurring.”

Uranium mining rapes the earth and processing and utilization poison the population as well as the eco-systems upon which we depend.

We don’t need nuclear power – its inefficient, costly, dangerous, and no solution exists for waste – and we don’t need nuclear weapons.

We don’t need any more uranium. Its antithetical to security when thought in relation to the preservation of life.””””

Start from Ship Rock NM, where a 90 million gallons of highly radioactive sludge, was released illegally into the  environment and,  san Juan River. The san Juan River Drains into the Colorado River.

Shiprock is also close to where underground nukes were detonated in New Mexico for project gasbuggy
Shiprock is on the navajo nation.

From there, moving West on the Navajo Nation.

Moving west to the grand canyon and the Uranium Mines there! Also downwind from Nevada nuke testing in the 50s and 60s.

GO NORTH TO Halchita IN DEEP SOUTH UTAH, BY the sacred Monument Valley.

Halchita, is where there was a uranium Mill and where there were mines, on the navajo Nation. Halchita is also downwind, from where the American Military nuke bombed its own citizens with a thousand bombs.

HALCHITA IS NAVAJO land, where half the residents in the area died from cancer.

Move norteast to Blanding, Utah, where energy Fuels is now located. By Bears ears, where Trump just opened unlimited uranium mining, even open pit uranium mining.

BLANDING IS Also downwinder. So many young people dead in mine accidents, prematurely from lung cancer, pacreatic cancer, ovarian cancer, lymphomas, leukemias. MANY PEOPLE THERE HATE URANIUM AND NUCLEAR.

A leader of the sagebrush rebellion, Cal Black, WAS a county commissioner of that county, San Juan County in the 60s and 70s.

Cal Black died with painful tumors, all over his body, at a young age. He regretted his involvement with Uranium, in the end.

The principal of Monticello High School,  had a young son, who died of the same leukemia, that cursed so many kids in southern utah. All of those kids were downwinders and uranium babies. Monticello is just 20 miles north of the Energy Fuels genocide factory.

There was a Uranium Mill, right in the middle of monticello. It has not cleaned up all the way, to this day.

The mill and tailings of energy fuels in blanding blows radioactive shit all over s utah to colorado and arizona.

Blanding and energy fuels, are 20 miles s of Monticello Utah.

The heavily contaminated dust from that abomination, blows radioactive shit, to the Ute reservation in colorado 50 miles away, to Bluff Utah by Monument valley and has heavily contaminated the Bears Ears.

There were the numerous nuclear bombs, detonated at the headwaters of and under the Colorado River in the 60s and 70s. There are the towns north of energy fuels along the Colorado river in Utah and colarado, that had to sue the government and corporate polluters for 20 years, to get something done about the radioactive shit in their towns.

And now Trump is back to start it up all over again and make it worse.

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July 22, 2018 Posted by | incidents, Uranium, USA | Leave a comment

TV News Media is letting the world down as it fails to cover unprecedented global heat wave

Global heat wave: an epic TV news fail https://thebulletin.org/2018/07/global-heat-wave-an-epic-tv-news-fail/?utm_source=Bulletin%20newsletter&utm_medium=iContact%20email&utm_campaign=July20  By Dawn Stover, July 19, 2018

This month’s scorching heat wave broke records around the world. The Algerian city of Ouargla, with a population of half a million, had a temperature of 124.3 degrees Fahrenheit on July 6, the hottest reliably measured temperature on record in Africa. In Ireland and Wales, the unusually hot weather revealed ancient structures normally hidden by grass or crops. In Chino, California, the mercury soared to 120 degrees. Another round of hazardous summer heat is expected this week, with record high temperatures possible in the southern United States.

The prolonged heat wave has been a staple of television news for weeks. However, most of the coverage has been sorely lacking in context: Humans are warming the planet, and scientists have already linked some heat waves to climate change. A recent analysis published in the journal Nature Climate Change concludes that human-driven climate change, rather than natural variability, will be the leading cause of heat waves over the western United States and Great Lakes region as early as the 2020s and 2030s, respectively.

Like the heat itself, much of the media coverage was stupefying. “Major broadcast TV networks overwhelmingly failed to report on the links between climate change and extreme heat,” according to a Media Matters survey. “Over a two-week period from late June to early July, ABC, CBS, and NBC aired a combined 127 segments or weathercasts that discussed the heat wave, but only one segment, on CBS This Morning, mentioned climate change.”

TV coverage would undoubtedly improve if weather forecasters were better informed about climate science. But four Republican senators with close ties to the fossil fuel industry are trying to eliminate government funding for a National Science Foundation designed to help forecasters (and by extension, the general public) “become more familiar with the science behind how their local weather and its trends are related to the dynamics of the climate.”

July 21, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change, media | Leave a comment

Pickering nuclear station – unsafe, and likely to remain so

The Pickering nuclear plant’s explosive secret https://www.durhamregion.com/opinion-story/8738033-the-pickering-nuclear-plant-s-explosive-secret/?s=n1
Angela Bischoff says OPG has no plans to make its nuclear waste as safe as possible  Jul 19, 2018 by Angela Bischoff  Pickering News Advertiser   

The Pickering Nuclear Station has a deadly secret: 740,000 radioactive fuel bundles sitting on site — the legacy of close to 50 years of nuclear operations.

These bundles contain radioactive materials that can penetrate the human body, leading to serious illness or death. They also contain an enormous amount of plutonium, the key ingredient in nuclear warheads or dirty bombs. There is enough plutonium on-site at Pickering today to construct more than 11,000 nuclear warheads.

We recently asked internationally recognized risk expert Dr. Gordon Thompson to review the advisability of storing this enormous pile of toxic waste in the midst of Canada’s largest urban area and next to the source of our drinking water.

His conclusion was stark: The Pickering site, he found, is “suboptimal as a spent nuclear fuel-storage site from perspectives including defensibility, proximity of populations, and potential to contaminate Lake Ontario.” He added that the current waste storage facilities have no protection from rocket, bomb or aircraft attacks from the air or water and that, overall, the site is “lightly defended” at best.

Half-a-century after the start of nuclear power operations in Canada, the Nuclear Waste Management Organization is still on the hunt for a “willing host” community to accept thousands of tonnes of spent fuel that will remain highly radioactive for thousands of years.

This means there is little chance the waste currently being stored at Pickering is going anywhere in the next 60 to 100 years. To add insult to injury, while Ontario Power Generation is planning to expand its conventional storage facilities so that Pickering can continue to produce and store more toxic nuclear wastes, it has no plans to make its new storage facilities as safe as possible. Specifically, it has no plans to build above-ground, attack-resistant, reinforced-concrete vaults to protect Pickering’s wastes from a terrorist attack.

Continuing to operate this patched-up nuclear plant surrounded by millions of people, while piling up more and more toxic nuclear wastes in conventional commercial storage buildings, is the very definition of an extremely bad idea that can only get worse.

Those who support keeping Pickering running until 2024 or beyond, such as Premier Doug Ford, need to explain how they plan to safeguard the thousands of tonnes of deadly waste already stored at the site and why it is a good idea to continue adding more.

— Angela Bischoff is the director of the Ontario Clean Air Alliance. We’re behind Ontario’s coal phase-out and are now working to move Ontario to a 100-per cent renewable electricity system.

July 21, 2018 Posted by | Canada, safety | Leave a comment

EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee want clarity on UK’s nuclear plans after Brexit

House of Lords 19th July 2018 The EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee has written to the Minister for Business and Industry, Richard Harrington MP, following an evidence session   with the Office for Nuclear Regulation which considered their efforts to prepare for Brexit.

The Committee has written to BEIS’ Minister for Business and Industry to ask for further clarity on the ONR’s future funding arrangements, and to request regular updates between now and the point of withdrawal to ensure the ONR’s preparation remains on track.

The Committee also asks for an update on negotiations regarding the intended Nuclear Cooperation Agreements with the USA, Canada, Japan and Australia.
https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/lords-select/eu-energy-environment-subcommittee/news-parliament-2017/nuclear-preparedness-letter-to-minister/

July 21, 2018 Posted by | politics international, UK | Leave a comment

Fukushima radioactive cesium particles detected in California wine

Fukushima’s nuclear signature found in California wine https://www.technologyreview.com/s/611654/fukushimas-nuclear-signature-found-in-california-wine/

The Japanese nuclear disaster bathed north America in a radioactive cloud. Now pharmacologists have found the telltale signature in California wine made at the time. by Emerging Technology from the arXiv, July 19, 2018

Throughout the 1950s, the US, the Soviet Union, and others tested thermonuclear weapons in the Earth’s atmosphere. Those tests released vast quantities of radioactive material into the air and triggered fears that the nuclear reactions could ignite deuterium in the oceans, thereby destroying the planet in a catastrophic accidental fireball.

Atmospheric tests ended in 1980, when China finished its program, but the process has left a long-lasting nuclear signature on the planet. One of the most obvious signatures is cesium-137, a radioactive by-product of the fission of uranium-235.

After release into the atmosphere, cesium-137 was swept around the world and found its way into the food supply in trace quantities. Such an addition is rarely welcomed. But in 2001, the French pharmacologist Philippe Hubert discovered that he could use this signature to date wines without opening the bottles.

The technique immediately became a useful weapon in the fight against wine fraud—labeling young wines as older vintages to inflate their price. Such fraud can be spotted by various types of chemical and isotope analysis—but only after the wine has been opened, which destroys its value.

Cesium-137, on the other hand, allows noninvasive testing because it is radioactive. It produces distinctive gamma rays in proportion to the amount of isotope present. Dating the wine is a simple process of matching the amount of cesium-137 to atmospheric records from the time the wine was made. That quickly reveals any fraud. Indeed, if there is no cesium-137, the wine must date from after 1980.

There is one blip in this record, though. The Chernobyl disaster in 1986 bathed much of Europe, and other parts of the world, in a radioactive cloud that increased atmospheric levels of cesium-137 again. Hubert and colleagues can see this blip in their data from wines.

And that raises an interesting question about the Fukushima disaster of 2011, an accident of Chernobyl proportions caused by a meltdown at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan following a huge earthquake and tsunami. It released a radioactive cloud that bathed North America in fissile by-products.

Is it possible to see the effects of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in California wines produced at the time?

Today we get an answer, thanks to a study carried out by Hubert and a couple of colleagues. “In January 2017, we came across a series of Californian wines (Cabernet Sauvignon) from vintage 2009 to 2012,” say Hubert and company.

This set of wines provides the perfect test. The Fukushima disaster occurred on March 11, 2011. Any wine made before that date should be free of the effects, while any dating from afterward could show them.

The team began their study with the conventional measurement of cesium-137 levels in the unopened bottles. That showed levels to be indistinguishable from background noise.

But the team was able to carry out more-sensitive tests by opening the wine and reducing it to ash by evaporation. This involves heating the wine to 100 degrees Celsius for one hour and then increasing the temperature to 500 degrees Celsius for eight hours. In this way, a standard 750-milliliter bottle of wine produces around four grams of ashes. The ashes were then placed in a gamma ray detector to look for signs of cesium-137.

Using this method, Hubert and his colleagues found measurable amounts of cesium-137 above background levels in the wine produced after 2011. “It seems there is an increase in activity in 2011 by a factor of two,” conclude the team.

That probably won’t be very useful for fraud detection in California wine—the levels of cesium-137 are barely detectable, and even then, only if the wine is destroyed.

But the result does show how nuclear disasters can have unexpected consequences long after the fact.

Ref: arxiv.org/abs/1807.04340 : Dating of Wines with Cesium-137: Fukushima’s Imprint

July 21, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Radiation from smartphones could be affecting memory performance in teenagers

Study suggests mobile phone radiation could affect teenagers’ memory performancehttps://www.irishnews.com/magazine/science/2018/07/20/news/study-suggests-mobile-phone-radiation-could-affect-teenagers-memory-performance-1388073/, 20 July, 2018 18:31

Radiation from smartphones could be affecting memory performance in teenagers, a new study has warned.

Scientists at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) have found that increased exposure to mobile phones over the course of a year negatively affects the figural memory – which refers to the human ability to understand images, shapes, patterns and objects – of adolescents.

According to the researchers, youngsters who hold their phone next to their right ear are more likely to be affected as figural memory is located in the right hemisphere of the brain.

The Swiss TPH team studied nearly 700 adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17, looking to see if there was a link between regular exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) – which are produced by mobile phone technologies and other wireless devices – and memory performance.

They found that RF-EMF absorbed by the brain to be associated with a negative effect on figural memory performance.

Sending text messages, playing mobile games and browsing the internet were found to “cause only marginal RF-EMF exposure to the brain and were not associated with the development of memory performance”, the researchers said.

The study follows up a report in 2015 and more recent information on the absorption of RF-EMF in adolescents’ brains during different types of wireless communication device use.

Martin Roosli, head of Environmental Exposures and Health at Swiss TPH, said that further research is needed to rule out other factors.

He said: “For instance, the study results could have been affected by puberty, which affects both mobile phone use and the participant’s cognitive and behavioural state.”

While the potential effects of RF-EMF exposure to the brain is a relatively new field of scientific research, Dr Roosli advises that using headphones or turning on the phone’s loudspeaker could help reduce the exposure to RF-EMF.

He said: “It is not yet clear how RF-EMF could potentially affect brain processes or how relevant our findings are in the long-term.

“Potential risks to the brain can be minimised by using headphones or the loudspeaker while calling, in particular when network quality is low and the mobile phone is functioning at maximum power.”

The research is published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

July 21, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, children | Leave a comment

Children’s eyes need protection from ultraviolet radiation

Get Your Sunglasses Out: UV-Radiation and Eye Health https://www.advancedsciencenews.com/get-your-sunglasses-out-uv-radiation-eye-health/ Bette Nijboer  July 19, 2018  

July 21, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, children | Leave a comment

Fukushima’s nuclear signature found in California wine

The Japanese nuclear disaster bathed north America in a radioactive cloud. Now pharmacologists have found the telltale signature in California wine made at the time.
Throughout the 1950s, the US, the Soviet Union, and others tested thermonuclear weapons in the Earth’s atmosphere. Those tests released vast quantities of radioactive material into the air and triggered fears that the nuclear reactions could ignite deuterium in the oceans, thereby destroying the planet in a catastrophic accidental fireball.
Atmospheric tests ended in 1980, when China finished its program, but the process has left a long-lasting nuclear signature on the planet. One of the most obvious signatures is cesium-137, a radioactive by-product of the fission of uranium-235.
After release into the atmosphere, cesium-137 was swept around the world and found its way into the food supply in trace quantities. Such an addition is rarely welcomed. But in 2001, the French pharmacologist Philippe Hubert discovered that he could use this signature to date wines without opening the bottles.
cesium-137-in-wine.jpg
The technique immediately became a useful weapon in the fight against wine fraud—labeling young wines as older vintages to inflate their price. Such fraud can be spotted by various types of chemical and isotope analysis—but only after the wine has been opened, which destroys its value.
Cesium-137, on the other hand, allows noninvasive testing because it is radioactive. It produces distinctive gamma rays in proportion to the amount of isotope present. Dating the wine is a simple process of matching the amount of cesium-137 to atmospheric records from the time the wine was made. That quickly reveals any fraud. Indeed, if there is no cesium-137, the wine must date from after 1980.
There is one blip in this record, though. The Chernobyl disaster in 1986 bathed much of Europe, and other parts of the world, in a radioactive cloud that increased atmospheric levels of cesium-137 again. Hubert and colleagues can see this blip in their data from wines.
And that raises an interesting question about the Fukushima disaster of 2011, an accident of Chernobyl proportions caused by a meltdown at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan following a huge earthquake and tsunami. It released a radioactive cloud that bathed North America in fissile by-products.
Is it possible to see the effects of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in California wines produced at the time?
Today we get an answer, thanks to a study carried out by Hubert and a couple of colleagues. “In January 2017, we came across a series of Californian wines (Cabernet Sauvignon) from vintage 2009 to 2012,” say Hubert and company.
This set of wines provides the perfect test. The Fukushima disaster occurred on March 11, 2011. Any wine made before that date should be free of the effects, while any dating from afterward could show them.
The team began their study with the conventional measurement of cesium-137 levels in the unopened bottles. That showed levels to be indistinguishable from background noise.
But the team was able to carry out more-sensitive tests by opening the wine and reducing it to ash by evaporation. This involves heating the wine to 100 degrees Celsius for one hour and then increasing the temperature to 500 degrees Celsius for eight hours. In this way, a standard 750-milliliter bottle of wine produces around four grams of ashes. The ashes were then placed in a gamma ray detector to look for signs of cesium-137.
Using this method, Hubert and his colleagues found measurable amounts of cesium-137 above background levels in the wine produced after 2011. “It seems there is an increase in activity in 2011 by a factor of two,” conclude the team.
That probably won’t be very useful for fraud detection in California wine—the levels of cesium-137 are barely detectable, and even then, only if the wine is destroyed.
But the result does show how nuclear disasters can have unexpected consequences long after the fact.
Ref: arxiv.org/abs/1807.04340 : Dating of Wines with Cesium-137: Fukushima’s Imprint

July 20, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , | 1 Comment

The ultimate nightmare (but good for military profiteers) Trump’s plan for nuclear weapons in space

Star wars returns – Free speech tv. 1 of 3

Trump’s Space Force: Military Profiteering’s Final Frontier http://progressive.org/dispatches/trumps-space-force-military-profiteerings-final-frontier-180719/

“The heavens are going to be littered with radioactive debris.”

by Harvey Wasserman July 19, 2018 

The Commander-in-Chief, President Donald Trump, has announced a new mission into the realm of martial excess. It is one is that will surely enrich the aerospace industry while spreading the global battlefield to a new dimension.

Trump is calling for the creation of a new Space Force as a sixth branch of the U.S. military, to militarize the heavens.

“It is not enough to merely have an American presence in space,” Trump told a meeting of the National Space Council in mid-June. “We must have American dominance in space.”

To this end, the President has taken a page from Ronald Reagan’s Star Wars playbook. Reagan’s scheme, according to a recent article by Karl Grossman, was built around “nuclear reactors and plutonium systems on orbiting battle platforms providing the power for hypervelocity guns, particle beams and laser weapons.”

Grossman, a journalism professor at State University of New York/College of New York and author of the book The Wrong Stuff: The Space Program’s Nuclear Threat to Our Planet, has been reporting on the militarization of space for decades, says the move will likely spur a new international competition to weaponize space.

In an interview, Grossman told me that “the Russians and Chinese are hesitant because of the high cost. But if the Americans proceed with this, all bets are off. They’re not going to sit for it. They’re going to get up there before you know it.”

“It will all be nuclear,” Grossman adds. “It’s the ultimate nightmare.”

Trump’s move contradicts the letter and spirit of the Outer Space Treaty of 1967, which was won after years of epic negotiations, mostly during the Vietnam War. The landmark United Nations accord brought the Soviet Union, China, the United States, and 120 other nations together in a monumental agreement to designate space as a global commons, reserved for peaceful purposes.

“States Parties to the Treaty undertake not to place in orbit around the Earth any objects carrying nuclear weapons or any other kinds of weapons of mass destruction, install such weapons on celestial bodies, or station such weapons in outer space in any other manner,” the treaty states.

“The Moon and other celestial bodies shall be used by all States Parties to the Treaty exclusively for peaceful purposes. The establishment of military bases, installations and fortifications, the testing of any type of weapons and the conduct of military maneuvers on celestial bodies shall be forbidden.”


Now Trump has instructed the Pentagon “to immediately begin the process necessary to establish a Space Force as the sixth branch of the armed forces; that is a big statement. We are going to have the Air Force and we are going to have the Space Force, separate but equal, it is going to be something.”

The proposal for a Space Corps as part of the Air Force could likely pass in the House but faces tougher going in the Senate.

“There’s a lot of resistance to this,” says Grossman, “because a lot of the current work is located in Colorado Springs, and in Huntsville, Alabama. So there’s geographical lobbying from the Pentagon because they thought a new Space Corps might be competition to some of the vested interest in those towns.”

“It’s hard to know how much this would cost,” says Grossman. An article in Roll Call has estimated “$500 billion or more in the coming decade.”

“The real cost will depend on how greedy the aerospace companies are,” Grossman says. “So much of space is now private business, with Elon Musk and Bezos and all kind of companies talking about making a buck out there.”

Representative Trent Franks, Republican of Arizona, seems to agree, tellingRoll Call that “a big payday is coming for programs aimed at developing weapons that can be deployed in space.”

According to Franks, “It was a Democrat mindset that caused us to step back from space-based defense assets to ostensibly not ‘weaponize space,’ while our enemies proceeded to do just that, and now, we find ourselves in a grave deficit. In every area of warfare, within the Geneva Conventions, America should be second to none. That includes satellite warfare, if it’s necessary. We cannot be victims of our own decency here.”


The 1967 Outer Space Treaty was the result of worldwide recognition that war is incredibly costly in terms of lives and resources—and that more needed to be done.

“The U.S. led the effort to de-weaponize space in the wake of Sputnik,” says Grossman. “I was told by Craig Eisendrath of the State Department that the U.S. feared the Soviet presence in space. As a model they used the Antarctic Treaty, which banned weapons down there.”

Since the mid-1980s, key players at the United Nations have tried to expand the ‘67 accord. The Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space Treatyproposed in 1985, would have banned from space all weapons, nuclear and otherwise. Canada, Russia, and China pushed hard for its ratification. But no American president has been willing to sign it. The United Nations committee working on it was dissolved in 1994. In 2008, China and Russia submitted an updated draft to the U.N. General Assembly which the United States alone has continued to oppose (Israel has abstained). Even Putin, at their infamous Helsinki presser, chided Trump about it.

Now Trump is heading where no President since Reagan has gone before. “My new national strategy for space recognizes that space is a warfighting domain, just like the land, air, and sea,” he says.

“Trump’s plan, like Reagan’s, involves laser beams, particle beams and hypervelocity guns, all of which will have to involve nuclear power,” says Grossman. “If there’s a shooting war it will be Chernobyls and Fukushimas in the sky. Some of it will come down, which will be catastrophic. And some will take millennia to fall, which means the heavens are going to be littered with radioactive debris.”

As Grossman sees it, “Of all the many, many terrible things the Trump Administration is doing, opening space to war will be the most destructive.”

 

July 20, 2018 Posted by | USA, weapons and war | 1 Comment

Arctic circle countries ravaged by wildfires – Sweden worst affected

Wildfires rage in Arctic Circle as Sweden calls for help http://www.inkl.com/news/sweden-calls-for-help-as-arctic-circle-hit-by-wildfires?sharer=20552, By Jonathan Watts, July 18, 2018

At least 11 wildfires are raging inside the Arctic Circle as the hot, dry summer turns an abnormally wide area of Europe into a tinderbox.

The worst affected country, Sweden, has called for emergency assistance from its partners in the European Union to help fight the blazes, which have broken out across a wide range of its territory and prompted the evacuations of four communities.

Tens of thousands of people have been warned to remain inside and close windows and vents to avoid smoke inhalation. Rail services have been disrupted.

The Copernicus Earth observation programme, which gives daily updates of fires in Europe, shows more than 60 fires burning across Sweden, with sites also ablaze in Norway, Finland and Russia, including in the Arctic Circle.

Norway has sent six fire-fighting helicopters in response to its neighbour’s request for assistance. Italy is sending two Canadair CL-415s – which can dump 6,000 litres of water on each run – to Örebro in central southern Sweden.

In western Sweden, fire-fighting operations were temporarily halted near an artillery training range near Älvdalen forest due to concernsthat unexploded ordnance might be detonated by the extreme heat.

Residents in Uppsala said they could see the plumes of smoke and have been banned from barbecuing in national parks, after 18 consecutive days without rain.

“This is definitely the worst year in recent times for forest fires. Whilst we get them every year, 2018 is shaping up to be excessive,” said Mike Peacock, a university researcher and local resident.

There have been huge fires in the past in Sweden, but not over such a wide area. This appears to be a trend as more and bigger blazes are reported in other far northern regions like Greenland, Alaska, Siberia and Canada.

The sparks come from a variety of sources: BBQs, cigarettes and increasingly lightning, which is becoming more frequent as the planet warms.

Swedish authorities say the risk of more fires in the days ahead is “extremely high” due to temperatures forecast in excess of 30C. Much of the northern hemisphere has sweltered in unusually hot weather in recent weeks, breaking records from Algeria to California and causing fires from Siberia to Yorkshire. Ukraine has been hit especially hard by wildfires.

The European Forest Fire Information System warned fire danger conditions were likely to be extreme across much of central and northern Europe in the coming weeks.

EU officials said many of this year’s fires are outside the traditional European fire zone of the Mediterranean, and are increasingly taking place at unexpected times of year. 2017 was the worst fire year in Europe’s history, causing destruction to thousands of hectares of forest and cropland in Portugal, Spain and Italy, as late as November. “There are clear trends of longer fire seasons and frequent critical periods in Europe that are leading to dangerous fire situations,” said a European commission official.

Climate scientists said the Arctic and other areas that were once relatively fire-free are likely to become more vulnerable.

“What we’re seeing with this global heatwave is that these areas of fire susceptibility are now broadening, with the moors in north-west England and now these Swedish fires a consequence of that,” said Vincent Gauci, professor of global change ecology at the Open University.

“Both these areas are typically mild and wet which allows forests and peatlands to develop quite large carbon stores,” he added. “When such carbon-dense ecosystems experience aridity and heat and there is a source of ignition – lightning or people – fires will happen.”

July 20, 2018 Posted by | ARCTIC, climate change, Sweden | Leave a comment

Unbearable heat in India becoming a major threat to health

In India, summer heat could soon be unbearable — literally

An analysis of South Asia’s biggest cities found that if current warming trends continued, wet bulb temperatures — a measure of heat and humidity indicating when the body can no longer cool itself — will become so high people directly exposed for six hours or more would die.
Somini Sengupta-Seattle Times,  July 18, 2018  
The New York Times

NEW DELHI — On a sweltering Wednesday in June, a rail-thin woman named Rehmati gripped the doctor’s table with both hands. She could hardly hold herself upright, the pain in her stomach was so intense.

She had traveled for 26 hours in a hot oven of a bus to visit her husband, a migrant worker here in the Indian capital. By the time she got here, the city was an oven, too: 111 degrees by lunchtime, and Rehmati was in an emergency room.

The doctor, Reena Yadav, did not know exactly what had made Rehmati sick, but it was clearly linked to the heat. Yadav suspected dehydration, possibly aggravated by fasting during Ramadan. Or it could have been food poisoning, common in summer because food spoils quickly.

Yadav put Rehmati, who is 31 and goes by one name, on a drip. She held her hand and told her she would be fine. Rehmati leaned over and retched.

Extreme heat can kill, as it did by the dozens in Pakistan in May. But as many of South Asia’s already-scorching cities get even hotter, scientists and economists are warning of a quieter, more far-reaching danger: Extreme heat is devastating the health and livelihoods of tens of millions more.

If global greenhouse-gas emissions continue at their current pace, they say, heat and humidity levels could become unbearable, especially for the poor.

It is already making them poorer and sicker.

…….Indeed, a recent analysis of climate trends in several of South Asia’s biggest cities found that if current warming trends continue, by the end of the century, wet bulb temperatures — a measure of heat and humidity that can indicate the point when the body can no longer cool itself — would be so high that people directly exposed for six hours or more would not survive.

In many places, heat only magnifies the more thorny urban problems, including a shortage of basic services, like electricity and water.

…The science is unequivocally worrying. Across the region, a recent World Bank report concluded, rising temperatures could diminish the living standards of 800 million people.

Worldwide, among the 100 most populous cities where summer highs are expected to reach at least 95 degrees Fahrenheit by 2050, according to estimates by the Urban Climate Change Research Network, 24 are in India.

………Delhi’s heat index, a metric that takes average temperatures and relative humidity into account, has risen sharply — by 0.6 degrees Celsius in summer and 0.55 degrees during monsoons per decade between 1951 and 2010, according to one analysis based on data from 283 weather stations across the country.

Some cities are getting hotter at different times of year. The average March-to-May summertime heat index for Hyderabad had risen by 0.69 degrees per decade between 1951 and 2010. In Kolkata, a delta city in the east, where summers are sticky and hot anyway, the monsoon is becoming particularly harsh: The city’s June-September heat index climbed by 0.26 degrees Celsius per decade.

Joyashree Roy, an economist at Jadavpur University in Kolkata, found that already, most days in the summer are too hot and humid to be doing heavy physical labor without protection, with wet-bulb temperatures far exceeding the thresholds of most international occupational health standards. of most international occupational health standards……… https://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/in-india-summer-heat-could-soon-be-unbearable-literally/

July 20, 2018 Posted by | climate change, India | 1 Comment

Linear No Threshold the best model for ionising radiation, new research shows

 Implications of recent epidemiologic studies for the linear nonthreshold model and radiation protection https://www.researchgate.net/publication/326387649_Implications_of_recent_epidemiologic_studies_for_the_linear_nonthreshold_model_and_radiation_protection

Article in Journal of Radiological Protection ·
Article in Journal of Radiological Protection · July 2018   Roy ShoreHarold Beck Jr. John D. Boice Lawrence Dauer        DOI: 10.1088/1361-6498/aad348
Abstract
The recently published NCRP Commentary No. 27 evaluated the new information from epidemiologic studies as to their degree of support for applying the linear nonthreshold (LNT) model of carcinogenic effects for radiation protection purposes [1].
The aim was to determine whether recent epidemiologic studies of low-LET radiation, particularly those at low doses and/or low dose rates (LD/LDR), broadly support the LNT model of carcinogenic risk or, on the contrary, demonstrate sufficient evidence that the LNT model is inappropriate for the purposes of radiation protection.
An updated review was needed because a considerable number of reports of radiation epidemiologic studies based on new or updated data have been published since other major reviews were conducted by national and international scientific committees. The Commentary provides a critical review of the LD/LDR studies that are most directly applicable to current occupational, environmental and medical radiation exposure circumstances.
This Memorandum summarizes several of the more important LD/LDR studies that incorporate radiation dose responses for solid cancer and leukaemia that were reviewed in Commentary No. 27. In addition, an overview is provided of radiation studies of breast and thyroid cancers, and cancer after childhood exposures. Non-cancers are briefly touched upon such as ischemic heart disease, cataracts, and heritable genetic effects.
To assess the applicability and utility of the LNT model for radiation protection, the Commentary evaluated 29 epidemiologic studies or groups of studies, primarily of total solid cancer, in terms of strengths and weaknesses in their epidemiologic methods, dosimetry approaches, and statistical modeling, and the degree to which they supported a LNT model for continued use in radiation protection. Recommendations for how to make epidemiologic radiation studies more informative are outlined. The NCRP Committee recognizes that the risks from LD/LDR are small and uncertain.
The Committee judged that the available epidemiologic data were broadly supportive of the LNT model and that at this time no alternative dose-response relationship appears more pragmatic or prudent for radiation protection purposes.

Implications of recent epidemiologic studies for the linear nonthreshold model and radiation protection | Request PDF. Available Implications of recent epidemiologic studies for the linear nonthreshold model and radiation protection | Request PDF. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/326387649_Implications_of_recent_epidemiologic_studies_for_the_linear_nonthreshold_model_and_radiation_protection [accessed Jul 20 2018].

July 20, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, radiation, Reference | Leave a comment

Captiol Hill briefing paper on the need for autopsies at decommissioning reactors 

http://www.beyondnuclear.org/nuclear-reactors-whatsnew/2018/7/11/captiol-hill-briefing-paper-on-the-need-for-autopsies-at-dec.html

LINK TO FULL REPORT 

Decommissioning nuclear power stations need an “autopsy” to verify and validate safety margins projected for operating reactor license extensions  

                                                    Summary

The Issue

The Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI), the lead organization for the U.S. commercial nuclear power industry, envisions the industry’s “Bridge to the Future” through a series of reactor license renewals from the original 40-year operating license; first by a 40 to 60-year extension and then a subsequent 60 to 80-year extension. Most U.S. reactors are already operating in their first 20-year license extension and the first application for the second 20-year extension (known as the “Subsequent License Renewal”) is before the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for review and approval. NEI claims that there are no technical “show stoppers” to these license extensions. However, as aging nuclear power stations seek to extend their operations longer and longer, there are still many identified knowledge gaps for at least 16 known age-related material degradation mechanisms (embrittlement, cracking, corrosion, fatigue, etc.) attacking irreplaceable safety-related systems including miles of electrical cable, structures such as the concrete containment and components like the reactor pressure vessel. For example, the national labs have identified that it is not known how radiation damage will interact with thermal aging. Material deterioration has already been responsible for near miss nuclear accidents.  As such, permanently closed and decommissioning nuclear power stations have a unique and increasingly vital role to play in providing access to still missing data on the impacts and potential hazards of aging for the future safety of dramatic operating license extensions.

The NRC and national laboratories document that a post-shutdown autopsy of sorts to harvest, archive and test actual aged material samples (metal, concrete, electrical insulation and jacketing, etc.) during decommissioning provides unique and critical access to obtain the scientific data for safety reviews of the requested license extensions. A Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) 2017 report concludes, post-shutdown autopsies are necessary for “reasonable assurance that systems, structures, and components (SSCs) are able to meet their safety functions. Many of the remaining questions regarding degradation of materials will likely require[emphasis added]a combination of laboratory studies as well as other research conducted on materials sampled from plants (decommissioned or operating).” PNNL reiterates, “Where available, benchmarking can be performed using surveillance specimens. In most cases, however, benchmarking of laboratory tests will require(emphasis added)harvesting materials from reactors.” In the absence of “reasonable assurance,” it is premature for licensees to complete applications without adequate verification and validation of projected safety margins for the 60 to 80-year extension period.

Decommissioning is not just the process for dismantling nuclear reactors and remediating radioactive contamination for site restoration. Decommissioning has an increasingly important role at the end-of-reactor-life-cycle for the scientific scrutiny of projected safety margins and potential hazards at operating reactors seeking longer and longer license extensions.                   

The Problem

After decades of commercial power operation,the nuclear industry and the NRC have done surprisingly little to strategically harvest, archive and scientifically analyze actual aged materials. Relatively few samples of real time aged materials have been shared with the NRC.  The NRC attributes the present dearth of real time aged samples to “harvesting opportunities have been limited due to few decommissioning plants.” However, ten U.S. reactors have completed decommissioning operations to date and 20 units are in the decommissioning process. More closures are scheduled to begin in Fall 2018.  A closer look raises significant concern that the nuclear industry is reluctant to provide access to decommissioning units for sampling or collectively share this cost of doing business to extend their operating licenses. Key components including severely embrittled reactor pressure vessels were promptly dismantled by utilities and buried whole without autopsy. Many permanently closed reactors have been placed in “SAFSTOR,” defueled and mothballed “cold and dark” for up to 50 years without the material sampling to determine their extent of condition and the impacts of aging. Moreover, the NRC is shying away from taking reasonable regulatory and enforcement action to acquire the requested samples for laboratory analysis after prioritizing the need for a viable license extension safety review prior to approval. Meanwhile, the nuclear industry license extension process is pressing forward.

David Lochbaum, a recognized nuclear safety engineer in the public interest with the Union of Concerned Scientists, identifies that nuclear research on the impacts and hazards of age degradation in nuclear power stations presently relies heavily on laboratory accelerated aging—often of fresh materials—and computer simulation to predict future aging performance and potential consequences during license extension.  Lochbaum explains that “Nuclear autopsies yield insights that cannot be obtained by other means.” Researchers need to compare the results from their time-compression studies with results from tests on materials actually aged for various time periods to calibrate their analytical models.According to Lochbaum, “Predicting aging effects is like a connect-the-dots drawing. Insights from materials harvested during reactor decommissioning provide many additional dots to the dots provided from accelerated aging studies. As the number of dots increases, the clearer the true picture can be seen. The fewer the dots, the harder it is to see the true picture.

The Path Forward

1) Congress, the Department of Energy (DOE) and the NRC need to determine the nuclear industry’s fair share of autopsy costs levied through collective licensing fees for strategic harvesting during decommissioning and laboratory analysis of real time aged material samples as intended to benefit the material performance and safety margins of operating reactors seeking license extensions, and;

2) As NRC and the national laboratories define the autopsy’s stated goal as providing “reasonable assurance that systems, structures, and components (SSCs) are able to meet their safety functions” for the relicensing of other reactors, the NRC approval process for Subsequent License Renewal extensions should be held in abeyance pending completion of comprehensive strategic harvesting and conclusive analysis as requested by the agency and national laboratories, and;

3) Civil society can play a more active role in the independent oversight and public transparency of autopsies at decommissioning reactor sites such as through state legislated and authorized nuclear decommissioning citizen advisory panels.

July 20, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, Reference, USA | Leave a comment

Growing threat to human health, as night time temperatures are going up around the world

Research published in the International Journal of Climatology last year found night-time temperatures were increasing more rapidly than daytime temperatures.

Why temperatures at night are going up around the world and what we can do about it http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-07-19/nights-getting-hotter-climate-change-has-deadly-consequences/9985340, ABC Weather By Kate Doyle 

July 20, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change | Leave a comment

Uranium Tariffs Threaten Nuclear Plants Trump Is Trying to Save

Uranium Tariffs Threaten Nuclear Plants Trump Is Trying to Save, Bloomberg, By 

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    U.S. to probe whether imports are threat to national security
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    Tariffs on imports ‘would drive up the price of uranium’
The Trump administration’s decision to consider tariffs on uranium imports may raise the cost of fuel for nuclear reactors and undermine a separate initiative to shore up struggling electricity generators.

The Commerce Department said Wednesday it will probe whether uranium imports “threaten to impair” national security. U.S. miners Energy Fuels Inc. and Ur-Energy Inc., which requested the probe in January, want 25 percent of the domestic market reserved for U.S. producers. Domestic companies supply less than 5 percent of U.S. consumption and would need about three years to ramp up production to meet that target.

The prospect of trade barriers comes after President Donald Trump last month ordered his energy secretary to take action to extend the life of money-losing coal and nuclear power plants that face competition from cheap natural gas and renewable energy. Those efforts may be hindered as the prospect of tariffs threatens to deal another blow to financially strapped reactor operators……..https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-19/uranium-tariffs-threaten-nuclear-plants-trump-is-trying-to-save

July 20, 2018 Posted by | politics, Uranium, USA | Leave a comment