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Warning on radiation risks at some parts of Fukushima, for Olympic Games 2020

[Herald Interview] Sports bodies need to make own assessments of Fukushima: Greenpeace nuclear specialist,    http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20190821000749 By Kim Bo-gyung  (lisakim425@heraldcorp.com)    Nuclear specialist warns of unknown long-term health, environmental risks from Japan’s radioactive water disposal plan  Aug 21, 2019  With less than a year to go until the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics, concerns are growing over the safety of the baseball and softball venues in disaster-hit Fukushima.

Seeking to break away from Japan’s association with high levels of radioactivity, the Abe government has branded the 2020 Olympics the “Recovery Games.”

But health and environmental risks from high levels of radiation persist in parts of Fukushima after the 2011 nuclear meltdown.

According to Shaun Burnie, a senior nuclear specialist with Greenpeace Germany, those visiting Fukushima for the Summer Games next year should take a proactive approach to educating themselves on which areas of Fukushima are affected by radiation and on the impact of exposure to radiation.

  • “In terms of safety, there are certain areas of Fukushima where we would certainly not advise athletes or spectators to spend any time. Those are areas particularly close to the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant, including where the torch processions will be taking place,” Burnie said in an interview with The Korea Herald at Greenpeace Korea’s office in central Seoul last week.

    “They are areas that are not safe for people to live. If you visit, you need to follow a radiation protocol. It is a bizarre situation that you are having Olympic events where people are concerned about radiation,” he added.

    While noting that not all parts of Fukushima should be off limits, Burnie said athletes and sports bodies need to seek independent assessments on Fukushima, rather than relying on information provided by the Japanese government.
    “It’s dangerous to just dismiss the whole of Fukushima as a radioactive disaster zone. It’s much more complex than that. The first thing is … don’t trust the Japanese government, educate yourself. If you’re an organizing body, get independent verification and independent information about what the relative radiation levels are, what the risks are,” Burnie said.

    As the senior nuclear specialist with Greenpeace Germany, Burnie has followed the Japanese government’s handling of the tsunami and earthquake in March 2011 that resulted in the meltdown of three nuclear reactors at the Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant.

    In a report published in January, Burnie alleged that Tokyo plans to dispose of some 1 million metric tons of contaminated water by discharging it into the Pacific Ocean after the Summer Olympics.

    If Japan follows through with the move, radioactive water is expected to be present in Korea’s East Sea a year later.

    “For the past five years we’ve been accessing the process, the discussions, the documents submitted by Tepco (Tokyo Electric Power Company) … we were reviewing some of Tepco’s data (last year) and we looked at it and went ‘there is something wrong here with Tepco’s processing,’” Burnie said.

    “It became very clear there has been bad decisions made, not really surprising, by Tepco, by the (Japanese) government over the last five or six years and how to manage the water crisis.”

    Last year Tepco acknowledged its Advanced Liquid Processing System, or ALPS, had failed to purify contaminated water stored in tanks at the Dai-ichi power plant.

    A committee under Japan’s Ministry of Economy in 2016 put together five scenarios for the Japanese government to deal with the massive volume of pollutants stored at the Fukushima No. 1 plant.

    The amount of water stored at the plant is to reach its full capacity of 1.3 million tons by the end of 2020, with about 170 tons accumulating daily.

    According to Burnie, Tokyo has chosen to discharge the radioactive water instead of acting on any of the other four suggestions because “it is the most cheap and fast.”

    Besides increased levels of radioactive cesium found in Fukushima and in the East Sea, Burnie warned of “cesium-rich micro particles” extremely small in size and inhaled through breathing.

    Cesium is one of the largest sources of radioactivity from the 2011 disaster and has a half-life of 30 years.

    “There is evidence from samples … some scientific literature has published the results and they found concentrations of these particles in areas 20-30 kilometers from the plant. … The problem is these particles can be inhaled. Then some of them lodge inside your lung at which point you are getting an internal dose, a very focused, very localized, relatively high-exposure dose to individual cells,” Burnie said.

    “That’s a real problem because there is very little known about how cesium in that form will affect your long-term health. … Again, the people most at risk are those returning to live in areas of Fukushima affected by these particles. But the Japanese government has not taken into account in any of its assessments what those risks are,” he added.

    Stressing that the risks of exposure to radiation should not be exaggerated, Burnie noted there is no safe level of radiation exposure and the long-term effects are unknown.

    “The effects you will only see over decades. It won’t be instant, it’s not an acute radiation exposure, it’s low-level radiation,” Burnie said.

    “The country that will be next impacted will be Korea, because it’s the geographically closest. … There is no safe threshold for radiation exposure. … Why should you be exposed when there is a clear alternative, which is you store?”

August 22, 2019 Posted by | environment, Japan | Leave a comment

Kremlin cover up on weapon tested, and radioactive contamination?

Russian radiation detectors ‘go dark’ after mystery explosion
The mysterious shutdown of four nuclear monitoring stations after a fatal blast at a military site has fuelled fears of radioactive contamination. news.com.au 22 Aug 19

Russian officials have dismissed concerns, declaring on Tuesday the country had no obligation to share its data with the CNTBTO — raising fears of a Kremlin cover up on the type of weapon involved and the extent of contamination.

Elevated radiation levels — of up to 16 times the average — were detected 40 km away in the city of Severodvinsk in the aftermath of the event, according to The New York Times.

President Vladimir Putin said on Monday there was no risk to the public, although officials have yet to disclose how much radiation was released………

US National Nuclear Security Administration former deputy William Tobey said it was “at least an odd coincidence” Russian sensors stopped transmitting data about the same time as the explosion occurred.

“Power outages, other failures, can knock down a particular place, but if more than one site is out, it would seem that that is a less likely explanation,” Mr Tobey said.

Russian authorities have offered changing and contradictory information about the explosion fuelling speculation about what really happened and what type of weapon was involved.

While the Russian Defense Ministry said no radiation had been released in a rocket engine explosion, officials in the nearby city of Severodvinsk reported a brief rise in radiation levels.

The contradiction drew comparisons to Soviet attempts to cover up the 1986 explosion and fire at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine, the world’s worst nuclear disaster.

In his first comments on the explosion, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday that it hasn’t posed any radiation threat. Putin added that experts are monitoring the situation to prevent any “unexpected developments.”

He didn’t say what weapon was being tested when the explosion occurred, but described the

test as a “state mission of critical importance.”…….

The Russian military said the explosion killed two people and injured six, while the state nuclear corporation Rosatom acknowledged later that it also killed five of its engineers and injured three others.

Rosatom said the explosion occurred on an offshore platform during tests of a “nuclear isotope power source.”……

Rosatom’s mention of a “nuclear isotope power source,” led some observers to conclude that the weapon undergoing tests was the “Burevestnik” or “Storm Petrel,” a prospective nuclear-powered cruise missile first mentioned by Putin in 2018 and was codenamed “Skyfall” by NATO.

US President Donald Trump backed that theory in a tweet last week, saying America is “learning much” from the Skyfall explosion.

The US worked to develop a nuclear-powered missile in the 1960s under Project Pluto, but the idea was discarded as impractical and risky. Mr Tobey said Russia’s apparent revival of the concept raises significant risks.

“Effectively, Russia is thinking about flying around nuclear reactors,” he told AP.

“The very idea of this system is, I think, a risky system. It probably poses more risk to the Russian people than to the American people. If it crashes, it could spread radiation.”

Nuclear expert Michael Krepon, who co-founded the Stimson Center, a nonpartisan public policy research body, said it was not surprising that Russia might take steps to conceal its activities because “they just can’t accept transparency when it comes to screw ups”.

“This weapon poses a danger first and foremost to the people who are working on it,” Mr Krepon said.

“It’s dumb, it’s stupid, it’s expensive, and there are so many other ways that you can deliver nuclear weapons long distance. The more Putin advertises this system, the more he’s likely to be embarrassed by it.” https://www.news.com.au/technology/innovation/military/russian-radiation-detectors-go-dark-after-mystery-explosion/news-story/4ab6ce7b4b3926379381a9a7d20baab3

August 22, 2019 Posted by | Russia, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Pentagon conducts test of banned missile after leaving INF Treaty

August 22, 2019 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Two victims of mysterious Russian missile blast ‘died of radiation sickness’

August 22, 2019 Posted by | health, Russia, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Under the Shield: U.S. Nuclear Missiles in Europe — Rise Up Times

U.S. missiles in Europe and worldwide: costs, nuclear weapons race, what the withdrawal from the INF Treaty means

via Under the Shield: U.S. Nuclear Missiles in Europe — Rise Up Times

August 22, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Scotland’s Cracked Reactor Given Permission to Reopen – for 4 months…WHY? —

Radiation Free Lakeland have been vehemently opposing the restarting of Hunterston’s cracked reactors. News that EDF has been given permission to restart one of the dodgy reactors for four months has been met with astonishment and anger. David Autumns a member of RaFL who has been in heated correspondence with the Office for Nuclear Regulation […]

via Scotland’s Cracked Reactor Given Permission to Reopen – for 4 months…WHY? —

August 22, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

UK’s nuclear regulator allows EDF to restart Hunterston B nuclear reactor, despite cracks

Nuclear regulator permits restarting of reactor 4 at Hunterston B

EDF Energy is expected to restart reactor a year after it was shut down over safety concerns, Guardian, Jillian Ambrose. 21 Aug 19,  Britain’s nuclear watchdog has agreed to allow one of the country’s oldest nuclear reactors to restart, one year after it was shut down to investigate cracks in its graphite core.

EDF Energy is expected to restart reactor 4 at its 40-year-old Hunterston B nuclear plant on the Firth of Clyde in North Ayrshire within weeks after the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) said the plant was safe.

The regulator will allow the reactor to run for four months after proving that the reactor cores can still fulfil their fundamental safety requirements, despite the cracks in its graphite bricks……..

The reactor was shut down last March after investigators discovered more than expected cracks in the graphite core of reactor 4 and reactor 3 at the Scottish nuclear plant. Its application to restart reactor 3, which was found to have more than 350 hairline cracks in its graphite core, is still pending. ……..

The French-owned energy company owns and operates all of the UK’s existing nuclear power plants, which provide about a fifth of the UK’s electricity. It is hoping to extend the reactors’ expected running lives and build new nuclear plants at the Hinkley Point C and Sizewell B nuclear sites.

The company said in 2016 it would extend the lives of its Heysham 1 and Hartlepool nuclear plants, which were due to close this year but will continue to run until 2024. The closure dates of the Heysham 2 and Torness nuclear plants will both be delayed by seven years to 2030.

EDF Energy hopes to run the Hunterston nuclear plant until 2023. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/aug/20/edf-nuclear-reactor-restarting-hunterston-b

August 22, 2019 Posted by | safety, UK | Leave a comment

Public Should Comment on New “WIPP Forever” Strategic Plan

Public Should Comment on New “WIPP Forever” Strategic Plan, http://nuclearactive.org/ August 22nd, 2019 The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) is the nation’s first geologic disposal site for radioactive and hazardous waste.  https://wipp.energy.gov/  But WIPP should not be the only repository.  For decades, federal laws and state agreements and permits have established a limited mission for both the amount of waste allowed and how long the site can operate.  Other repositories are necessary since the nation has no plans to stop production of nuclear weapons that generate the plutonium waste. Other repositories also are required for commercial spent fuel and military high-level wastes.

In recent years, officials with the Department of Energy (DOE) have discussed various ideas to keep WIPP open for at least 50 years – twice as long as the original schedule – and to expand the types and amounts of waste.  One reason for the “WIPP Forever” plan is to avoid telling Congress and the public that it is time to develop other repositories – since no state is asking for those dump sites.

DOE announced the upcoming release of a Draft Five-Year Strategic Plan and public comment meetings in Santa Fe on Monday, August 26th from 3 to 5 pm at the Hotel Santa Fe, and in Carlsbad on Wednesday, August 28th from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm at the Skeen-Whitlock Building.  While WIPP officials acknowledge that more informed public comment happens if the draft plan is released several days in advance, the document may not be available until just before the Santa Fe meeting.

Thus, what exactly is in the five-year plan is uncertain.  But it likely will presume that WIPP continues to operate until at least 2050 and the amount of waste totals at least thirty percent more than the legal limit of 175,564 cubic meters.  It will certainly include adding at least one new shaft and numerous underground disposal rooms beyond those ever included in past designs.  That additional space is for plutonium-contaminated waste previously designated for WIPP that doesn’t fit because of the underground contamination that makes some areas of the underground unusable.  The Plan also could include tons of weapons-grade plutonium and high-level waste that has always been prohibited by federal law and the state permit.

Don Hancock, of Southwest Research and Information Center, said, “Whatever the specifics of the WIPP Strategic Plan, the public can tell DOE that we do not agree with operating WIPP forever.  People can also tell State officials to enforce the legal limits on the amount and types of waste and set a closing date so that DOE and Congress know that it’s time to plan for either long-term storage at generator sites or new repositories in other states.”  http://www.sric.org/

August 22, 2019 Posted by | USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Plymouth League of Women Voters Sends Letter of Protest to NRC Re Plans to Approve Transfer of Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station to Holtec Inc. — Mining Awareness +

From: https://plymouth.wickedlocal.com “Plymouth League of Women Voters sends letter of protest to NRC By David Kindy Posted at 1:00 PM Dry cask storage at Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station designed to hold radioactive waste.[Courtesy Photo] PLYMOUTH – The Nuclear Regulatory Commission [1] continues to draw fire [2] from Plymouth residents for its announcement that it plans to approve […]

via Plymouth League of Women Voters Sends Letter of Protest to NRC Re Plans to Approve Transfer of Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station to Holtec Inc. — Mining Awareness +

August 22, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

US NRC Considers Holtec Nuclear Decommissioning Exemption Request; Massachusetts AG Outlines Risks of Holtec Exemption — Mining Awareness +

Giving Holtec “exemptions” appears to be a favorite activity for the US NRC. They have piled quality exemption upon exemption for Holtec’s spent nuclear fuel canisters/casks. Now they are trying to allow exemptions of a new variety. Why has Holtec, apparently privatedly owned by Kris P. Singh, been allowed to get by with this? How […]

via US NRC Considers Holtec Nuclear Decommissioning Exemption Request; Massachusetts AG Outlines Risks of Holtec Exemption — Mining Awareness +

August 22, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Japan to report that North Korea can now miniaturise nuclear warheads

North Korea now able to miniaturise nuclear warheads – Japan defence report

Upcoming review out of Tokyo will reportedly say missile programme poses ‘serious and imminent threat’ Guardian  Justin McCurry in Tokyo  21 Aug 19, Japan’s government will reportedly state that North Korea is capable of miniaturising nuclear warheads in a forthcoming defence report, it has emerged.

Tokyo will upgrade its estimate of the regime’s nuclear capability, having said last year only that the technical feat was a possibility, the conservative Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper said on Wednesday, without citing sources.

The defence report will maintain Japan’s contention that North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programmes pose a “serious and imminent threat” to its security after recent meetings between Donald Trump and the North’s leader, Kim Jong-un, failed to make progress on denuclearisation. The report is expected to receive cabinet approval in mid-September, the Yomiuri said…….

In 2017, a leaked US intelligence assessment concluded that North Korea had developed the technology to produce nuclear warheads small enough to fit inside missiles, theoretically giving it the ability to send nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles [ICBMs] to distant targets, including the US mainland.

North Korea’s short- and medium-range missiles can strike South Korea and Japan, including US military assets in those countries……. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/aug/21/north-korea-now-able-to-miniaturise-nuclear-warheads-japan-defence-report

August 22, 2019 Posted by | Japan, North Korea, weapons and war | 1 Comment

Safety concerns about floating nuclear reactors, and Rosatom admits that electricity from small floating nuclear reactors is more expensive.

August 22, 2019 Posted by | ARCTIC, business and costs, Russia, safety, technology | Leave a comment

FirstEnergy Solutions moves to ditch union contracts for bailed out nuclear plants, drawing Democrats’ ire

FirstEnergy Solutions moves to ditch union contracts for bailed out plants, drawing Democrats’ ire

FirstEnergy Solutions’ veteran nuclear plant workers would lose traditional pensions if a bankruptcy court agrees with the latest FES restructuring plan, Utility Dive,   John Funk Aug. 15 2019, “…….

On the same day in July that Ohio lawmakers approved state-wide customer charges to give FirstEnergy Solutions a six-year $1.1 billon nuclear plant subsidy, the company told a bankruptcy court it could not honor existing contracts with unions representing power plant employees and intended to negotiate completely new bargaining agreements once it emerged as a reorganized company.
That revelation emerged Friday in an objection to the company’s latest reorganization plan by lawyers representing locals of the Utility Workers Union of America and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The unions were among more than half dozen parties in the case filing objections.

In a reference to the FES reorganization plan filed July 23 — less than 12 hours after House Bill 6 had been approved by the legislature and signed by Republican Gov. Mike DeWine — the unions argue that the company intends to use the court to emerge from bankruptcy without its union contracts. And that contradicts the testimony of David Griffing, the company’s vice president of governmental affairs, the union filing to the court charges.

Griffing assured lawmakers in April before an Ohio House subcommittee that “that new [collective bargaining agreements] were in essence agreed upon … Both parties … believe the negotiations were acceptable.” But Friday’s filing on behalf of the union locals indicates that the company has neither agreed to assume the existing contracts nor reached new ones with the unions at two of the three FES nuclear plants, Perry, east of Cleveland and Beaver Valley, near Pittsburgh.

The struggle between the company and its unions is erupting publicly just weeks before court hearings are scheduled on the company’s bankruptcy reorganization plan and also comes at a time when opponents of HB 6 are gearing up a referendum petition drive to put the subsidy issue before voters on the November 2020 ballot.

The union is basing its position in the bankruptcy struggle to remain viable at the power plants on the argument that “successorship clauses” in the contracts obligate FES to require any new company — including a reorganized FirstEnergy Solutions — to assume the contracts as they were agreed to.  The unions point out that FES abided by that contract language when it sold other power plants to outside companies.

FES: Can’t assume the contract

The company position, as laid out in its July 23 reorganization plan, is that the reorganized FES cannot assume the contract because “the collective bargaining agreements require the Debtors to provide benefits to their employees under health care, severance, welfare, incentive compensation, and retirement plans sponsored by FirstEnergy Corp.”

Instead, FES wants to negotiate new terms “consistent with the business plan” of the reorganized company. FES also held out the possibility that it might ask the court to throw out the contracts.

The unions are countering that under the bankruptcy code and existing case law, the company must declare before reorganization whether it is rejecting the contract. “They simply want the benefit of plan confirmation, without deciding whether to assume or reject,” the union attorneys wrote. “However this is not what the law provides.”

The union filing reveals that in bargaining talks over the past few months the company has contended that the benefits in the existing union contracts, particularly the pension benefits, “are non-replicable.”

The union filing also notes that it would have the right to file an “administrative damage claim” later if the issue is not resolved now and the company later decides to reject the contracts out of hand.

Unions play key role in HB 6

The power plant unions played what has been described as a key role in the company’s media and lobbying campaigns to persuade Democrat lawmakers of the necessity of approving the unprecedented bailout in Ohio of an unregulated power plant company……
 Ohio House Minority Leader Emilia Strong Sykes, D-Akron, issued a statement Monday questioning FirstEnergy Solutions’ move and praising unions for quickly filing their objection in bankruptcy court.

“HB 6 was problematic because I thought it was a bad idea to direct rate payer money to a corporation who refused to unequivocally agree to protect and support union contracts and the men and women who rely on those contracts to put food on their table,” Sykes wrote.

“Less than 12 hours after the bill was signed into law, the ink hardly dry, FirstEnergy Solutions began backing away from the workers who depend on those jobs. FES can make this right by coming to the table and affirming and recognizing these union employees who deserve to be treated fairly through this process,” she continued………  https://www.utilitydive.com/news/firstenergy-solutions-moves-to-ditch-union-contracts-for-bailed-out-plants/560236/?fbclid=IwAR3qbI100d-e46tFg5caow77Aer8fg3QfZ0Ud8H1J-84f5tJS0M85_bRcJ0

August 22, 2019 Posted by | employment, Legal | Leave a comment

Rare earths’ radioactive wastes -a toxic issue in Malaysia

Australian mining company Lynas gets permission to dispose of radioactive waste in Malaysia, dividing locals ABC 

Key points:

  • Malaysia has renewed the rare earth plant licence of Australian company Lynas
  • Green groups say Lynas’ activities pose a threat to the local environment
  • Lynas says it will meet the licence obligations set by Malaysia’s Government

Outside of China, the Australian firm, Lynas, is the world’s only major producer of rare earth minerals, which are crucial in the production of high-tech gear including smartphones, laser-guided missiles and electric car batteries.

The ore is dug up at Mount Weld in Western Australia and then shipped to Malaysia, where the cost of processing is significantly lower.

The low-level radioactive waste is a by-product of the enrichment process and Malaysian activists are convinced it poses a threat to local communities.

At a recent protest in Kuantan, several hundred people rallied against the Australian firm and Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad’s decision to extend its licence to operate.

“[The radioactivity] will be passed through our children and our children’s children,” said Moses Lim, a chemical engineer turned activist.

“We may be gone, but our grandchildren will curse us.”

Mr Lim claimed the issue had the potential to “tarnish the good name of Australia” in the minds of millions of Malaysians. But the Prime Minister, 94-year-old Dr Mahathir, dismissed criticism of Lynas’ operations in Malaysia.

“It’s not Chernobyl. This isn’t going to be dangerous,” he said.

‘We just have to accept this fate’

The issue has split the local community, which relies on the hundreds of high-paying jobs that the processing facility provides.

At a local fish market in Kuantan, a mother who declined to offer her name told the ABC she feared radioactive contamination from the facility would make its way into her food.

“I am scared, but I have no choice but to buy the fresh fish from here. We just have to accept this fate,” she said.

“I think Lynas should be shut down for the sake of the surrounding environment.”

But other locals said there was nothing to worry about, blaming politicians for trying to capitalise on the issue by whipping up fear in the community.

Raja Harris bin Raja Salleh, the chief fisher in Balok village, said the residents are “not at all scared”.

“Lynas is the same as other agencies and factories that produce chemicals. The accusations against Lynas are political,” he said.

Toxic waste becomes a toxic issue

The issue of Lynas’ radioactive waste has become politically toxic for the Mahathir-led coalition, which promised in opposition to close the Australian plant.

Now in government after last year’s shock election result, there has been a major backing down.

Lynas is allowed to keep operating its plant and has been given six months to find a suitable site within Malaysia to permanently dispose of 580,000 tonnes of low-level radioactive waste currently stockpiled at the Kuantan facility.

The company has also been given four years to relocate its cracking and leaching processing operation — which creates the radioactive waste — to Western Australia.

Wong Tak, a Malaysian Government MP who attended the Kuantan protest, said the cabinet decision to extend the licence was a “great disappointment”.

The long time anti-Lynas campaigner claimed the issue was serious enough to fracture the Mahathir-led Pakatan Harapan, or Alliance of Hope, Coalition.

“I know the majority of backbenchers are with us, and I will even say the majority of the cabinet are with the people.”

Dr Mahathir has taken a pragmatic approach to the issue, saying the decision to extend the licence was based on expert advice, not the “popular view”.

“Either we get rid of the industry and lose credibility in terms of foreign direct investment, or we can take care of the problem,” he said……

The fate of Lynas in Malaysia is being keenly watched around the world amid concerns rare earth materials could become a bargaining chip in the ongoing US-China trade war.

In 2010, the Chinese supply of rare earths to Japan suddenly stopped for two months following a territorial dispute over Japan’s claim to the Senkaku Islands, which angered China.

The construction of the Lynas plant in Malaysia was largely funded in 2011 by Japan, which needed a reliable supply of rare earths.

China currently holds a near-monopoly on the production of rare earth minerals, with Lynas producing about 13 per cent of global supply.https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-08-22/malaysians-divided-on-radioactive-waste-from-aussie-miner-lynas/11434122

August 22, 2019 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, Malaysia, RARE EARTHS | Leave a comment

Trump signs off on plan to launch nuclear spacecraft

Trump signs off on plan to launch nuclear spacecraft,  New York Post, By Marisa Schultz, August 20, 2019, WASHINGTON — President Trump on Tuesday signed a presidential memorandum outlining new procedures to launch nuclear power systems into outer space.

Trump directed the Department of Transportation to issue public guidelines within a year for commercial companies seeking a license to launch spacecraft with nuclear systems. …..

The federal government and private companies have been eyeing nuclear-powered space exploration and nuclear reactors to fuel missions to the moon, Mars and beyond.

Nuclear propulsion could cut the nine-month trip to Mars in half, the Houston Chronicle reported Tuesday, after the sixth meeting of the National Space Council. Vice President Mike Pence attended the Virginia meeting and touted accomplishments of Trump’s renewed focus on space exploration.

“Our moon-to-Mars mission is on track, and America is leading in human space exploration again,” Pence said. https://nypost.com/2019/08/20/trump-signs-off-on-plan-to-launch-nuclear-spacecraft/

August 22, 2019 Posted by | space travel, USA | Leave a comment