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Fukushima waste water plan won’t win public confidence, no matter how hard Japan tries

Fukushima waste water plan won’t win public confidence, no matter how hard Japan tries,  Peter Wynn Kirby https://www.scmp.com/comment/opinion/article/3130239/fukushima-waste-water-plan-wont-win-public-confidence-no-matter-how

  • The nuclear industry’s history of secrecy and cover-ups is only one reason
  • Tepco’s incompetent and at times dishonest handling so far of the 2011 disaster and its aftermath has shattered what’s left of people’s trust.

To exasperated observers, this recalled the nuclear industry’s notorious 1990s mobilisation of Pluto-kun, a puckish cartoon character who drinks plutonium – arguably the world’s most dangerous substance – to demonstrate its harmlessness.

While other nations in the region have registered vociferous opposition to the water release plan, the domestic resistance is telling. A majority of Japanese oppose the plan. For a decade, the fishing industry has laboured, successfully, to show that the seafood it brings to market is safe, giving a wide berth to the plume of radioactive effluent haemorrhaging out of the Fukushima nuclear plant. All these efforts may soon appear to have been made in vain.

As indicated above, the choice of last Tuesday for the announcement seems to have been dictated by politics alone. Did Japan see the Olympics as a feel-good spectacle that could provide cover for the decision? Did US President Joe Biden’s recent pressure on Japan and South Korea to work together on regional security make the timing more palatable? 

Whatever the calculus involved, one thing is for sure: the more Japan tries to make Fukushima Daiichi seem perfectly safe, the more people distrust the message – and the messenger.

As the Japanese proverb goes, “Let the past drift away like water.” Yet with radiation, letting go is not so simple. Even as the Japanese government tries to rid itself of the catastrophic after-effects of the Fukushima nuclear crisis, radioactive traces stubbornly remain. 

Japan announced last week its intention to release about 1.25 million tonnes of waste water collected from the bowels of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station. The water to be released into the Pacific Ocean contains tritium, a radioactive hydrogen isotope with a half-life of over 12 years. The unwelcome news has provoked uproar both within Japan and among neighbouring countries

For over a decade, authorities have been engaged in a messy, difficult, frustrating, even Sisyphean task, flushing the ruined footprint of the power station with water to keep the slumped nuclear fuel there from triggering a chain reaction.The meltdowns left parlous uranium fuel in desultory clumps amid the wreckage below. The only way to cool the escaped uranium is to flood the most dangerous areas of the Fukushima Daiichi complex with circulating seawater. Radioactive groundwater and waste water have been stored on-site to avoid contact with humans and the environment.

Ever since, huge water tanks filled with contaminated water have been springing up around the Fukushima Daiichi site like poisonous mushrooms. Now, there are over 1,000 of them. Most rival the size of small Japanese apartment buildings. 

You didn’t have to be a genius to realise that the situation at Fukushima Daiichi was unsustainable. Any child who could do basic maths, or maybe a bit of Minecraft, would have been able to see that, day by day, month by month, the water would increase and the 350-hectare site would have less and less available space.Whatever else you might say about Japanese bureaucrats with regard to nuclear policy, they have very good maths skills. As a result, we can surmise that Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s announcement last week was, at root, a question of politics and calculated timing

Not that Japan didn’t attempt to resolve the situation otherwise. Authorities tried a range of strategies, including plugging leaks and creating a gigantic US$300 million ice wall around the site, underground, to stem water flow.

In the end, filtering the waste water was the only workable solution. But Japan had mixed results with this strategy. In June 2011, the first filtration system set up by reviled Tepco – Tokyo Electric Power Co, the company that owned the nuclear power station – broke down after only a few hours. The amount of radioactive Caesium in the water overwhelmed the filters. 

More recently, before a parliamentary commission, Tepco was forced to admit that it had falsely claimed to have treated most of the waste water from the plant. In actual fact, Tepco had properly dealt with only about one-fifth of the waste water.

Astonishingly, this disappointing result stemmed from it not having bothered to change the filters often enough. Even such basic elements of quality control seem to be beyond the capabilities of the Tepco team, which already lives in infamy after having presided over the world’s second most damaging civil nuclear disaster, after Chernobyl. 

Predictably, scientists, officials and industry stakeholders argue that this degree of tritium discharge happens all the time in the nuclear industry – this is more or less true, however perturbing – and suggest that the announced controlled release should therefore present no problem whatsoever.

But the history of the nuclear industry globally is one of military synergies, secrecy, cover-ups, Machiavellian information management, and propaganda-style communication with the public. Indeed, it was striking that on the very same day as Suga’s announcement, Japan’s reconstruction agency released a video depicting tritium in the form of Tritium-kun, a harmless-seeming fishlike creature with blushing cheeks who says tritium release is safe.

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Fukushima continuing, public opinion | 2 Comments

70 years later, ionising radiation from nuclear bomb tests still found in U.S. honey

Nuclear fallout is showing up in U.S. honey, decades after bomb tests, Science  Nikk Ogasa Apr. 20, 2021 

Fallout from nuclear bomb tests in the 1950s and ’60s is showing up in U.S. honey, according to a new study. Although the levels of radioactivity aren’t dangerous, they may have been much higher in the 1970s and ’80s, researchers say.

“It’s really quite incredible,” says Daniel Richter, a soil scientist at Duke University not involved with the work. The study, he says, shows that the fallout “is still out there and disguising itself as a major nutrient.”

In the wake of World War II, the United States, the former Soviet Union, and other countries detonated hundreds of nuclear warheads in aboveground tests. The bombs ejected radiocesium—a radioactive form of the element cesium—into the upper atmosphere, and winds dispersed it around the world before it fell out of the skies in microscopic particles. The spread wasn’t uniform, however. For example, far more fallout dusted the U.S. east coast, thanks to regional wind and rainfall patterns.

Radiocesium is soluble in water, and plants can mistake it for potassium, a vital nutrient that shares similar chemical properties. To see whether plants continue to take up this nuclear contaminant, James Kaste, a geologist at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, gave his undergraduate students an assignment: Bring back local foods from their spring break destinations to test for radiocesium.

One student returned with honey from Raleigh, North Carolina. To Kaste’s surprise, it contained cesium levels 100 times higher than the rest of the collected foods. He wondered whether eastern U.S. bees gathering nectar from plants and turning it into honey were concentrating radiocesium from the bomb tests.

So Kaste and his colleagues—including one of his undergrads—collected 122 samples of locally produced, raw honey from across the eastern United States and tested them for radiocesium. They detected it in 68 of the samples, at levels above 0.03 becquerels per kilogram—roughly 870,000 radiocesium atoms per tablespoon. The highest levels of radioactivity occurred in a Florida sample—19.1 becquerels per kilogram.

The findings, reported last month in Nature Communications, reveal that, thousands of kilometers from the nearest bomb site and more than 50 years after the bombs fell, radioactive fallout is still cycling through plants and animals………

The findings raise questions about how cesium has impacted bees over the past half-century, says Justin Richardson, a biogeochemist at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. “They’re getting wiped out from pesticides, but there are other lesser known toxic impacts from humans, like fallout, that can affect their survival.”

After the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986, scientists showed radiation levels nearby could hamper the reproduction of bumble bee colonies. But those levels were 1000 times higher than the modern levels reported here, notes Nick Beresford, a radioecologist at the U.K. Centre for Ecology & Hydrology.

So even though the new study shouldn’t raise any alarm bells over today’s honey, understanding how nuclear contaminants move around is still vital for gauging the health of our ecosystems and our agriculture, says Thure Cerling, a geologist at the University of Utah. “We need to pay attention to these things.”  https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2021/04/nuclear-fallout-showing-us-honey-decades-after-bomb-tests

April 22, 2021 Posted by | environment, radiation, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Legal and other problems for Japan, with growing opposition to its plan for dumping Fukushima waste-water in the ocean

FILE PHOTO: Storage tanks for radioactive water are seen at Tokyo Electric Power Co’s (TEPCO) tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Okuma town, Fukushima prefecture, Japan February 18, 2019. REUTERS/Issei Kato/File Photo

Toxic reaction to Japan’s
Fukushima water dump
,  https://www.lowyinstitute.org/the-interpreter/toxic-reaction-japan-s-fukushima-water-dump     ARISTYO RIZKA DARMAWAN, 21 Apr 21,

Experts insist the release of treated radioactive water is not dangerous.

Legal challenges might find otherwise.

The Netflix documentary “Seaspiracy” caused a stir following its release last month, both for highlighting the serious damage human activities are causing the world’s oceans – whether from marine debris or whale hunting – and also for claims that the program features misleading statements and statistics.

But the controversy pales against the announcement last week by the Japanese government that it plans in two years to release treated radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean.

The contaminated water has been held in tanks since an earthquake and subsequent tsunami damaged the Fukushima nuclear reactor in 2011. With storage capacity predicted to run out late next year, Japan has decided to press ahead with long-speculated plans to dump treated wastewater into the sea.

Even though the Japanese government, International Atomic Energy Agency and some experts have argued that the release of the water is not dangerous and will do no harm to the ocean, there are good reasons to be concerned about the potential for environmental damage. Local Japanese, South Korean and Taiwanese fishing industries have protested the move, as have communities in the Pacific Islands. China has been scathing, with one recent op-ed in the state-run China Daily declaring “Japan cannot use the Pacific as its sewer”. The United States has been more understanding in its comments, with Secretary of State Antony Blinken praising Japan for “transparent efforts” in its decision.

But Japan may also be challenged under international law, and South Korea has already threatened legal action under international dispute settlement mechanisms.

There are at least two international treaties that regulate or ban the dumping of waste at sea: the United Nations Convention on the law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the 1996 Protocol to the Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter, 1972, generally referred to as the London Convention and Protocol.

UNCLOS stipulates that all parties shall cooperate in protecting the marine environment and under Article 210 explicitly requires “laws, regulations and measures shall ensure that pollution by dumping is not carried out without the permission of the competent authorities of States”.

That terminology will be debated, whether it be over the notion of “competent authorities” or indeed whether Japan’s plan amounts to “dumping”. UNCLOS defines the terminology of dumping as “any deliberate disposal at sea of wastes or other matter from vessels, aircraft, platforms or other man-made structures at sea”. Given that the proposal is to release water held on land, this may not be covered by the convention.

It may even be argued that dumping at sea is allowable under Article 8 of the London Convention and Protocol. The article stipulates that dumping is allowed during an emergency, with the provision that a party “shall consult any other country or countries that are likely to be affected”. That may explain the “transparency” of Japan providing two years notice of its intended action. Yet in this case, it is questionable whether running out of storage capacity can be considered an emergency, given the article also stipulates such action is permissible only “in emergencies posing an unacceptable threat to human health, safety, or the marine environment and admitting of no other feasible solution”. 

Regardless of how such disputes play out, however, it is also notable that neither UNCLOS nor the London Convention and Protocol have strong sanction mechanisms. Enforcement relies on either coastal states or flag states.

Neighbouring countries have reacted strongly, as have international environmental NGOs, including Greenpeace. Boycotts and bans on Japanese fisheries products have already been mooted. Unless another solution is found, Japan’s plan will continue to face a mounting tide of opposition.

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Japan, Legal, politics international | Leave a comment

Decision on Fukushima waste water should be in consultation with international agencies, not just a decision by Japan alone.

Disposal of Fukushima nuclear wastewater should be assessed under framework of intl agencies, not let world pay: FM, By Global Times, 21 Apr 21, China’s Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday the disposal of Fukushima nuclear wastewater should be assessed and discussed under the framework of international agencies including the UN, the WHO, and the IAEA, urging the Japanese government to correct its irresponsible decision to dump of the wastewater to the ocean and avoid involving people all around the world in paying for its wrongdoings. 

The remarks came after South Korean Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong expressed opposition to the move, and said on Tuesday that Seoul will work closely with international agencies to deal with Japan.

At a routine press conference, China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin stressed that before dumping nuclear-contaminated water, there should be a discussion with neighboring countries and an evaluation within the framework of international agencies including the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Wang added that Japan’s decision to dump the nuclear-contaminated water is not only opaque, unscientific, unlawful, irresponsible and unethical, but also at risk of being condemned by the world.

“A ban has been placed on black scorpionfish caught off Fukushima waters from entering markets due to the detection of excessive radioactive materials. And this is the second time that fish have been found with excessive radioactive materials in Fukushima waters since February,” said Wang.

All of these signs point to the fact that disposal of radionuclides is complicated and difficult, noted Wang, adding that the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident has been bringing harm to its surroundings for the past decade since it happened. ……..

Wang said that the methods of the wastewater disposal concern the safety of the Asia-Pacific region, the global ecological environment, and the lives and the health of people in all countries. The data should be evaluated and consultations held with all parties whose interests are bound to it.

“We noticed that Japan’s Tokyo Electric Power Company intends to submit a progress plan for wastewater disposal in May. We express strong opposition and serious concern to the matter as Japan unilaterally pushes forward the plan without consultation with the international community especially neighboring countries,” Wang said.  

“Please don’t let people all over the world pay for Japan’s wrongdoings,” he added.  https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202104/1221712.shtml

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Japan, Legal, oceans, politics international, wastes | Leave a comment

Japan’s government bans shipments of black rockfish from Fukushima, due to highlevels of radioactive cesium

Fish radioactive report prompts Fukushima ban, http://global.chinadaily.com.cn/a/202104/21/WS607f7f4ea31024ad0bab93e5.html

By WANG XU in Tokyo China Daily 2021-04-21  The Japanese government banned shipments of black rockfish from Fukushima on Monday, after a radioactive substance was found to be more than five times higher than acceptable levels in the fish caught off the prefecture.

The Fukushima prefectural government said 270 becquerels of radioactive cesium were detected per kilogram of the black rockfish, which had been caught at a depth of 37 meters near the city of Minamisoma, Fukushima, on April 1.

The amount of radioactive cesium is five times more than the limit set by a local fisheries cooperative of 50 becquerels per kg. It is also sharply higher than Japan’snational standard in general foods of 100 becquerels per kg.

In response, Japan’s national nuclear emergency response headquarters on Monday ordered a ban on the shipment of the fish caught off the waters of Fukushima.

Early in February, radioactive cesium 10 times above permitted levels in Japan were detected in the same area.

Scientific research showed the amount of cesium in foods and drinks depends upon the emission of radioactive cesium through the nuclear power plant, mainly through accidents. High levels of radioactive cesium in or near one’s body can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bleeding, coma, and even death.

Monday’s restrictions came a week after Japan’s government decided to release radioactive water from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant into the sea despite fierce opposition from fishing crews at home and concern from the international community.

“The (Japanese) government’s decision is outrageous,” said Takeshi Komatsu, an oyster farmer in Miyagi prefecture, north of Tokyo. “I feel more helpless than angry when I think that all the efforts I’ve made to rebuild my life over the past decade have come to nothing.”

South Korea strongly criticized the decision to release the contaminated water, with its Foreign Ministry summoning the Japanese ambassador. President Moon Jae-in ordered officials to explore petitioning an international court over the issue.

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Japan, oceans, radiation | Leave a comment

Alaska to increase its radiation testing of seafood..

A Decade After Fukushima Nuclear Disaster, Alaska Expands Seafood Monitoring High North News,  Apr 21 2021

State environmental regulators announced Monday they’re expanding radiation testing of commercially harvested Alaska seafood using a gamma radiation detector at a state laboratory in Anchorage, according to APM.

A devastating earthquake and tsunami off the coast of Japan in 2011 crippled the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, which released radioactive material into the air and ocean……..  https://www.highnorthnews.com/en/decade-after-fukushima-nuclear-disaster-alaska-expands-seafood-monitoring

April 22, 2021 Posted by | oceans, radiation, USA | Leave a comment

Iran Nuclear Deal Talks Advance as U.S. Offers Sanctions Relief

Iran Nuclear Deal Talks Advance as U.S. Offers Sanctions Relief

Biden administration signals openness to easing measures against oil, finance and other sectors, but Tehran wants to see specifics, WSJ, By Ian Talley, Benoit Faucon and Laurence NormanUpdated April 21, 2021

The Biden administration has signaled it is open to easing sanctions against critical elements of Iran’s economy, including oil and finance, helping narrow differences in nuclear talks, according to people familiar with the matter.

Despite the progress, senior diplomats warned that weeks of difficult negotiations over the 2015 nuclear agreement lie ahead and progress remains fragile. Talks in Vienna are complicated by domestic politics in Washington and Tehran and by Iran’s refusal to meet directly with the U.S.

President Biden wants to return to the 2015 deal after former President Donald Trump withdrew in 2018. The U.S. decision to quit the deal and impose sweeping sanctions on Iran prompted Tehran to breach many of the key restrictions in the accord, making a return to the agreement’s provisions and limits difficult for both sides.

Senior officials in Vienna this week wrapped up five days of talks, with delegations returning home before negotiations resume next week. People involved in the talks say progress has come as the U.S. laid out more clearly the contours of the sanctions relief it is prepared to provide.

Many of the sanctions were imposed under Mr. Trump using U.S. terrorism authorities, and U.S. officials previously have said they are willing to consider lifting some of them. But they haven’t detailed which sanctions could be eased or which Iranian entities stand to be affected……..  (subscribers only)  https://www.wsj.com/articles/iran-nuclear-deal-talks-advance-as-u-s-offers-sanctions-relief-11619024783

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Iran, politics international | Leave a comment

Overdue Shutdown of the Indian Point Nuclear Plant

Overdue Shutdown of the Indian Point Nuclear Plant

Environmental groups write that gains in energy efficiency and renewable power exceed the plant’s annual output. 

“Nuclear Plant’s Shutdown Means More Fossil Fuel in New York”(news article, April 13):

New York State is making good on its promise to replace the aging, unsafe Indian Point nuclear plant with clean energy. Gains in energy efficiency and renewable power over the last decade already exceed the plant’s total annual output, with much more to come.

We can expect year-to-year changes given fluctuations in energy demand and prices. But the overall trend in New York is clear: Clean energy is here to stay, and emissions reductions are on track to reach the state’s ambitious climate goals.

Closing this dangerous plant is overdue. Over the years Indian Point has experienced reactor structure problems with the potential for structural failure, as well as leaks, fires and unplanned shutdowns.

For the 20 million people who live within 50 miles of it, Indian Point’s long-planned closure ends a risky chapter.  Paul GallayKit Kennedy
Mr. Gallay is president of Riverkeeper and Ms. Kennedy is senior director, climate and clean energy program, at the Natural Resources Defense Council.   https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/21/opinion/letters/indian-point-nuclear.html

April 22, 2021 Posted by | decommission reactor, ENERGY, USA | Leave a comment

The $2.5Billion-a-year effort to stabilise the Hanford reservation’s dangerous nuclear wastes


Nuclear waste structures in Washington state are stabilized,  
https://apnews.com/article/environment-and-nature-business-government-and-politics-washington-nuclear-waste-14e29e8923c62bf5835f33e1b649000c    RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Energy has confirmed that two underground structures at the decommissioned Hanford nuclear reservation in Washington state have been stabilized after they were deemed at risk of collapsing and spreading radioactive contamination into the air.

“With this work completed, Hanford has ensured the stability of these structures and reduced risks to workers and the environment,” department spokesperson Geoff Tyree said.

The partial collapse of a tunnel storing nuclear waste the nuclear reservation in 2017 prompted a federal study which concluded last year that a large settling tank and two trenches where plutonium-contaminated liquids were poured into the ground for disposal posed a high risk of collapse and contamination, Tri-City Herald reported Tuesday.

The Hanford reservation produced plutonium for nuclear weapons during the Cold War and World War II, leaving 56 million gallons (212 million litres) of radioactive waste in underground tanks. The largest of the three underground structures, which operated from 1955 to 1962, was estimated to be contaminated with 105 pounds (48 kilograms) of plutonium.

Scott Sax, president of Hanford contractor Central Plateau Cleanup Co., told employees that the three underground structures identified in the study were filled with concrete-like grout to prevent them from collapsing.

The work was done by White Shield Inc. of Pasco under a contract originally valued at about $4 million.

Sax also said that at least one of the trenches was buried deep enough to prevent nuclear waste from releasing into the air in the event of a collapse.

“Routine monitoring will continue to ensure all three structures remain stable,” Sax said, at least until further environmental cleanup action is taken.

Final cleanup plans for the structures have not yet been made as the Energy Department focuses on other high-priority projects, including capsules of radioactive waste that are at risk of releasing contamination in the event of a severe earthquake.

About $2.5 billion a year is being spent to stabilize and clean up waste and contamination left at the 580-square-mile (1,500-square-kilometer) site in Richland, Washington about 200 miles (322 kilometers) southeast of Seattle, officials said.

April 22, 2021 Posted by | safety, USA, wastes | Leave a comment

S.Korean students shave heads in protest over Japan’s nuclear waste water plan


S.Korean students shave heads in protest over Japan’s nuclear waste water plan, Reuters, Hyun Yi  21 Apr 21
, More than 30 South Korean college students shaved their heads in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul on Tuesday to protest Japan’s decision to release water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea.

Police periodically dispersed crowds, who chanted and held placards, but did not stop the event from taking place, though there is an anti-pandemic ban on gatherings larger than 10 people.

The protesters who were shaved were draped in protective sheets emblazoned with messages condemning the Japanese plan and calling for it to be ditched.

One read: “The Japanese government should immediately cancel the plan to release the contaminated water.”…….. https://www.reuters.com/business/environment/skorean-students-shave-heads-protest-over-japans-nuclear-waste-water-plan-2021-04-20/

April 22, 2021 Posted by | South Korea, wastes | Leave a comment

Huge disruption for Northern New Mexico with electricity plans for Los Alamos plutonium cores production.

US Lab Looks to Boost Power Supply Ahead of Nuclear Mission   https://www.usnews.com/news/business/articles/2021-04-20/us-lab-looks-to-boost-power-supply-ahead-of-nuclear-mission

The U.S. government plans to build a new transmission line and make other upgrades to ensure its northern New Mexico nuclear weapons laboratory has enough electricity for current and future missions.
April 20, 2021,  By SUSAN MONTOYA BRYAN, Associated Press

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. government plans to build a new transmission line and make other upgrades costing hundreds of million dollars to ensure its laboratory in northern New Mexico has enough electricity for ongoing operations and future missions that include manufacturing key components for the nation’s nuclear arsenal.

Officials have said one of the existing lines that feeds Los Alamos National Laboratory is expected to reach capacity this summer.

The other likely will hit its limit within the next few years amid more high-computing projects related to nuclear weapons design and performance and as work ramps up to build the plutonium cores that are used to trigger weapons.

The U.S. Energy Department’s National Nuclear Security Administration announced Monday that it will work with federal land managers to assess the project’s potential environmental effects. A virtual public meeting is scheduled for May 6 and the public will have until May 21 to weigh in on the scope of the planned review.

The proposed transmission line would stretch more than 12 miles (19 kilometers), crossing national forest land in an area known as the Caja del Rio and spanning the Rio Grande at White Rock Canyon. New structural towers would need to be built on both sides of the canyon.

The project — which could cost up to $300 million — also would require new overhead poles with an average span of 800 feet (244 meters), access roads for construction and maintenance and staging areas where materials can be stored.

Federal officials have said they plan to try to have the project avoid known biological, recreational, cultural and historical resources, such as the Camino Real Aldentro National Historic Trail. Another goal would be minimizing visibility of the transmission line from residential areas.

Part of the line would be built along an existing utility corridor, but a new path would have to be cut through forest land to reach an electrical substation.

The Los Alamos Study Group, a watchdog group that has been critical of the lab’s expansion plans, reiterated concerns about the lack of an overall analysis of the cumulative effects that plutonium core production and more weapons work could have on the surrounding communities.

Greg Mello, the group’s director, said no comprehensive information regarding the future of lab is available to the public, to local and state governments or to the immediately affected Native American tribes. He pointed to future land acquisition and site plans and other documents that have been redacted.

“This is a poorly-justified project, one we strenuously oppose,” he said in a statement, adding that the electrical capacity the lab claims it needs is double what it has now and is premised on as-yet-unapproved programs and projects.

Environmentalists, residents and others have suggested that the lab tap into its scientific capabilities and consider other options such as superconducting transmission lines, battery storage and solar generation.

They point to the project as an opportunity to move the state close to reaching mandates of electricity generation being carbon-free over the next two decades.

They also voiced concerns about potential effects on the Caja del Rio, saying it encompasses wide Indigenous landscapes and is a scenic gateway to northern New Mexico.

The area has seen an increase in outdoor recreational use and it serves as a migration corridor for wildlife.

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Sri Lanka expels ship carrying nuclear material for China


Sri Lanka expels ship carrying nuclear material for China, Channel News Asia, 22 Apr 21, COLOMBO:
Sri Lankan authorities on Wednesday (Apr 21) expelled an Antigua-registered ship that entered the island’s territory without declaring a radioactive cargo bound for China.

The country’s Atomic Energy Regulatory Council said the MV BBC Naples was asked to leave after it was found to be in the Chinese-run port of Hambantota on Tuesday night carrying uranium hexafluoride.

“The ship failed to declare its dangerous cargo – uranium hexafluoride – and we decided to order it to leave our waters immediately,” council director general Anil Ranjith told AFP.

The ship had come from Rotterdam but authorities did not say where in China it was headed.

Ranjith said it was an offence to enter a port without declaring the material, which is used to enrich uranium, the fuel for nuclear power stations and weapons.

Sri Lanka’s opposition leader Sajith Premadasa demanded an investigation into the incident, describing it as a serious safety threat……

The entry of two Chinese submarines into Colombo in 2014 angered neighbouring India, the traditional regional power which is competing with Beijing for influence in the Indian Ocean.

Since then, Sri Lanka has not allowed Chinese submarine visits.  https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/sri-lanka-expels-ship-carrying-nuclear-material-for-china-14666510

April 22, 2021 Posted by | ASIA, incidents | Leave a comment

Code Pink: Closing US Military Bases Abroad — Rise Up Times

Why should the 800 US military bases abroad be closed? with Christine Ahn, David Vine and Robert Kajiwara

Code Pink: Closing US Military Bases Abroad — Rise Up Times

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

April 21 Energy News — geoharvey

Opinion: ¶ “Why Renewable Electricity Powers Decarbonization – And Pays Off” • For decades, big power utilities piled on with claims that fluctuating solar and wind power could black out the grid. Back in 2005, even the US DOE said renewables were “too rare, too diffuse, too distant, too uncertain, and too ill-timed.” Now we […]

April 21 Energy News — geoharvey

April 22, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Global Warming, Environmental Variability, and Infectious Disease — GarryRogers Nature Conservation

COVID-19 battle allowing spread of other infectious diseases in India.

Global Warming, Environmental Variability, and Infectious Disease — GarryRogers Nature Conservation

April 22, 2021 Posted by | climate change, health | Leave a comment