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For Joe Biden – an early trial problem – the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

The New Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty Will Be an Early Trial for Biden, World Politics Review, Miles A. Pomper Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2020,      With support from nearly half the world’s nations, a new United Nations treaty banning the possession and use of nuclear weapons will take effect early next year. The U.N. confirmed last month that the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, or TPNW, had been ratified by the required 50 countries. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called it “a tribute to the survivors of nuclear explosions and tests, many of whom advocated for this treaty.”

Many non-nuclear-armed states, as well as pro-disarmament activists and organizations like the Nobel Peace Prize-winning International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, have celebrated the agreement, which they see as a milestone in global efforts to prevent nuclear war. However, it has drawn strong opposition from nuclear-armed states, especially the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council: Russia, China, France, the United Kingdom and the United States. The Trump administration has called on the treaty’s 84 signatories to back out of it. Its entry into force on Jan. 22, 2021, will pose a thorny diplomatic challenge for the incoming Biden administration………..

In the case of the Chemical and Biological Weapons Conventions, the major possessors of these arsenals, such as the United States and Russia, helped draft and build support for the pacts. However, the TPNW was drawn up by non-nuclear-armed states over the objections of nuclear powers. The initiative reflected the frustration of non-nuclear-weapons states with what they contended was the failure of their nuclear-armed counterparts to uphold their end of the “grand bargain” at the heart of the NPT. That bargain calls on the non-nuclear-weapon states to permanently renounce nuclear arms in exchange for access to peaceful nuclear technology and a commitment by nuclear powers to “pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures” toward nuclear disarmament. ………

November 19, 2020 Posted by | election USA 2020, politics international | Leave a comment

UK government wastes tax-payer money on small and large nuclear reactors that will never be cheap or safe

FoE Scotland 17th Nov 2020, Friends of the Earth Scotland gave a scathing reaction to the UK Government’s announcement of a 10-point plan on climate and energy, calling for much more priority on solutions which can reduce emissions and create jobs today.
Friends of the Earth Scotland’s Director, Dr RichardDixon, said: “This much-trailed 10-point plan is deeply disappointing. In this Climate Emergency, what we needed was investment in measures that would reduce emissions drastically over the next decade and create greenjobs immediately.
Instead, the UK Government is clearly living in fantasy land with far too much reliance on long-term false solutions to the climate
crisis like carbon capture and storage, hydrogen and nuclear. “While there are some crumbs from the table in terms of the welcome new target of 2030 to phase out fossil-fuelled cars, overall there is too little new money and too much funding committed to long-term, dangerous distractions.
The funding on the table is a fraction of what’s needed to bring emissions down over the next decade, and the plan lacks credible detail about how it would create decent green jobs and ensure a truly just andgreen recovery from COVID-19. “At a time when electricity from renewables is getting cheaper and cheaper it is impossible to understand why the UK Government continues to throw public money at eye-wateringly expensive large reactors and falls for the nuclear industry’s latest myth, that small modular reactors dotted around the country will ever be cheap or safe.””
Fortunately Scotland has turned its back on new reactors”

https://foe.scot/press-release/response-to-the-uk-10-point-climate-plan-for-net-zero/

November 19, 2020 Posted by | politics, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, UK | Leave a comment

Could a mad, unhinged US president, push the nuclear button?

Could a mad, unhinged US president, push the nuclear button?  From JFK and the Cuban crisis, to Nixon and Watergate, to now: the sum of all fears, is still carried in a suitcase, By DAVE MAKICHUK, NOVEMBER 19, 2020  “I had no idea we had so many weapons … what do we need them for?”

— A stunned President Bush, after his first briefing on US nuclear forces

It is the elephant in the room.

And it is a very big elephant, and, a very big room.

We are living in a very surreal time, that much we know. Officials would even say, challenging — I would even say, it’s a bit worse than that.

We have a US president who still believes he won the election, despite the fact he clearly lost.

He imagines bizarre conspiracy theories, things that one can’t even comprehend, as proof that the 2020 election was

rigged.

Yet, there isn’t one iota of evidence to back up President Trump’s claims.

He is, without question, angry, in denial and — most importantly — vengeful to those who served him, whom he thinks

let him down.

All in all, it paints a picture of a man, who only cares about himself …. not the will of the people, not the country, and

not the office of the White House.A man with his finger on the nuclear trigger.

The exact opposite, in fact, of one President John F. Kennedy, who, after a meeting with the Joint Chiefs during the

Cuban missile crisis, dominated by gung-ho Air Force General Curtis LeMay, who destroyed Tokyo in a deliberate
firebombing — men, women, children, anything that walked — thought they’d all lost their minds.  ……… https://asiatimes.com/2020/11/could-a-mad-unhinged-us-president-push-the-nuclear-button/

November 19, 2020 Posted by | election USA 2020, politics international, weapons and war | Leave a comment

No. 2 reactor at Tohoku Electric Power Co’s Onagawa nuclear power plant for restart, despite problems

As nuclear worries linger, Tohoku plant heads for landmark restart,   BY ERIC JOHN, 18, Nov, 20  OSAKA – On Nov. 11, Miyagi Gov. Yoshihiro Murai gave the green light to restarting the No. 2 reactor at Tohoku Electric Power Co’s Onagawa nuclear power plant. While the reactor is not expected to begin generating power until construction to improve the plant’s safety is completed, the governor’s approval paves the way for the first reactor damaged by the Great East Japan Earthquake to resume operation.

The restart, the first in northeastern Japan, comes amidst controversial restarts in the country’s west following the quake and at a time when the energy source’s future economic and political feasibility is being debated after the government announced a target of Japan being carbon neutral by 2050.

It is also the first reactor in northeastern Japan to be restarted, as well as the first Boiling Water Reactor, the same type of reactor as those that melted down at the Fukushima plant following the March 11, 2011 quake and tsunami.

What is the Onagawa nuclear plant and what happened to it after the earthquake and tsunami?

The Onagawa nuclear power plant sits on a peninsula in Miyagi Prefecture about 130 kilometers from the epicenter of the March 11, 2011 quake and tsunami. It has three reactors, one of which is being decommissioned.

………..The government’s current long-term energy strategy calls for nuclear power to provide between 20% and 22% of the nation’s electric power supply by fiscal 2030. The Agency for Natural Resources has said to meet that goal, the restart of 30 reactors is necessary.

There are a number of issues that could make that goal difficult. These include the cost of meeting the new NRA safety standards that went into place after 3/11 and the time needed to upgrade facilities. For the operator, those costs raise questions of whether it is worth investing and whether nuclear power-generated electricity will remain competitive with renewable energy in the coming years.

Other issues could also drive up the costs of restarting more reactors, beginning with subsidies to local governments. With no financial incentive, village heads, city mayors and prefectural governors could delay or refuse permission to restart. Even if permission is granted, operators may face lawsuits from residents opposed to restarts, a process that could delay or even halt the process if a judge rules in their favor, which would mean further costs for the operator.

The government’s current long-term energy strategy calls for nuclear power to provide between 20% and 22% of the nation’s electric power supply by fiscal 2030. The Agency for Natural Resources has said to meet that goal, the restart of 30 reactors is necessary.

There are a number of issues that could make that goal difficult. These include the cost of meeting the new NRA safety standards that went into place after 3/11 and the time needed to upgrade facilities. For the operator, those costs raise questions of whether it is worth investing and whether nuclear power-generated electricity will remain competitive with renewable energy in the coming years.

Other issues could also drive up the costs of restarting more reactors, beginning with subsidies to local governments. With no financial incentive, village heads, city mayors and prefectural governors could delay or refuse permission to restart. Even if permission is granted, operators may face lawsuits from residents opposed to restarts, a process that could delay or even halt the process if a judge rules in their favor, which would mean further costs for the operator.

November 19, 2020 Posted by | Japan, politics | Leave a comment

Anti-Nuclear Pacifists Get Federal Prison Terms for Nonviolent Protest

Anti-Nuclear Pacifists Get Federal Prison Terms for Nonviolent Protest, Reader Supported News , By Elise Swain, The Intercept, 17 November 2   The most dedicated peace activists you’ve never heard of are headed to federal prison amid a deadly pandemic.
ach weekend, while New York City’s East Village packs into sidewalk tables for brunch, activist Carmen Trotta leads a vigil for ending the U.S.-backed war in Yemen in Tompkins Square Park. He only has a few more Saturday mornings before he must report to federal prison, along with fellow activists from Plowshares, the anti-nuclear, Christian pacifist movement. Despite a lethal pandemic ravaging prison populations, Trotta, Martha Hennessy, Clare Grady, and Patrick O’Neill are due to report to prison within the next few months for activism against a suspected nuclear weapons depot.

More than two years ago, Trotta and Hennessy, two of seven activists known as the Kings Bay Plowshares Seven, peacefully broke into the naval base in Brunswick, Georgia — risking their own lives to protest the suspected nuclear arsenal housed within. Armed only with vials of their own blood, hammers, GoPro cameras, spray paint, protest banners, and whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg’s book, the activists symbolically attempted to disarm the nuclear weapons located on the Trident submarines at the base.

The nonviolent direct action took place on the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. Far out of the spotlight of major media coverage, all but one of the activists have quietly been sentenced in their faith-based battle with the U.S. government over the “immoral” possession of nuclear weapons. The activists were charged with three felonies — conspiracy, destruction of government property, depredation — and misdemeanor trespassing.

The sentencing — sending aging activists to federal prisons amid the coronavirus pandemic — fits squarely within the long history of the U.S. government throwing the book at people of conscience who dare to dissent. President Donald Trump’s acceleration of heavy-handed federal charges against protesters have drawn critical media attention.

Yet activists like those in the Plowshares community, whose protests garner less attention, are suffering at the hands of a bipartisan consensus on harsh crackdowns related to direct action against so-called defense policies. Under the rubric of national security, the persecutions of figures like Chelsea Manning, Daniel Everette Hale, or Reality Winner become polarized or fail to raise public ire, when they are noticed at all.

That was the case last week, when few took note of the latest Plowshares sentences. Trotta, 58; Hennessy, 65; along with Grady, 62, were sentenced by Judge Lisa Godbey Wood in individual virtual court sessions. Trotta got 14 months, Grady was given 12 months and one day, and Hennessy was sentenced to 10 months; all were ordered to pay restitution and were given years of supervised release. As cases of Covid-19 engulfed Georgia, the defendants reluctantly agreed to proceed with their sentencing without appearing in person. Only Mark Colville, 59, has yet to be sentenced. Colville refuses to travel to Georgia because of the coronavirus and will not give up his constitutional right to an in-person sentencing before the court.  ………….. https://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/318-66/66270-anti-nuclear-pacifists-get-federal-prison-terms-for-nonviolent-protest

November 19, 2020 Posted by | Legal, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

In the face of public opposition, Ottawa delays small nuclear reactor plan

Ottawa delays small nuclear reactor plan as critics decry push for new reactors,  Yahoo Finance Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press, Thu., November 19, 2020,   “……… Industry critics were quick to pounce on the government’s expected SMR announcement. They called on Ottawa to halt its plans to fund the experimental technology.

.. a major problem facing the industry is its growing mound of radioactive waste. This week, the government embarked on a round of consultations about what do with the dangerous material.

Dozens of groups, including the NDP, Bloc Quebecois, Green Party and some Indigenous organizations, oppose the plan for developing small modular reactors. They want the government to fight climate change by investing more in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

“We have options that are cheaper and safer and will be available quicker,” Richard Cannings, the NDP natural resources critic, said in a statement.  …

Joe McBrearty, head of Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, told the conference the company had signed a host agreement this week with Ottawa-based Global First Power for a demonstration SMR at its Chalk River campus in eastern Ontario. A demonstration reactor will allow for the assessment of the technology’s overall viability, he said

November 19, 2020 Posted by | Canada, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors | Leave a comment

Sizewell C nuclear plant ‘not value for money’, and would sabotage the govt’s pledge for nature

November 19, 2020 Posted by | environment, UK | Leave a comment

Uranprojekt -The Nazi Nuclear Program

November 19, 2020 Posted by | Germany, history, Reference | Leave a comment

Russia’s latest nuclear icebreaker had to abort maiden Arctic voyage

November 19, 2020 Posted by | Russia | Leave a comment

Destruction of wildlife habitat, Coronation Wood to be felled, for Sizewell C nuclear project

TASC 16th Nov 2020, Despite every effort from lawyers representing Together Against Sizewell C
(TASC), and the invaluable financial and moral support from many concerned
citizens, TASC are devastated to learn that the Courts have refused its
application to make a final appeal to overturn the decision to allow the
destruction of Coronation Wood.
TASC member Joan Girling who brought the
case to court, said “Due to the crass decision-making of East Suffolk
Council, EDF have now been given the green light to carry out their
Sizewell B relocation plans which include taking their chain-saws to and
destroying the whole of Coronation Wood.
“It is totally premature to
allow the felling of the wood. Sizewell C may never get permission and a
100 year old wood cannot be replaced. Due to its removal there will be a
major loss of visual screening of the nuclear industrial complex causing
increased noise and light pollution, totally ignoring the site’s status
as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Destroying the wood, its badger
setts, bird and bat habitats blows EDF’s environmental credentials out of
the water. There are alternatives but EDF and the council chose not to
pursue them. EDF is not concerned in any way, shape or form for the well
being of the ecology of the area, nor that of locals who are deeply upset
by their plans”

https://tasizewellc.org.uk/latest-on-coronation-wood-judicial-revue/

November 19, 2020 Posted by | environment, UK | Leave a comment