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Support Arms Control, Not Nuclear Weapons We are at a crossroads as a global community: either we support arms control and reduce the role that nuclear weapons play in our security, or we double down on a dangerous and costly nuclear arms race that makes us all less safe.

Arms control is a powerful tool for managing nuclear risk. We need it in this present moment, even in the midst of—and perhaps especially because of—the war in Ukraine, with its heightened risk for conflict between nuclear-armed states. And we need a future with more arms control in it. In August, President Biden expressed readiness to negotiate a new agreement before our last bilateral arms control treaty with Russia expires. We need to push the Biden administration to make sure that happens.

Urge your members of Congress to support nuclear arms control and urge the Biden administration to take action toward a world free from nuclear weapons.


January 12, 2023 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

The PG and E plan to sell non-nuclear generation assets could improperly increase rates, groups tell FERC

Ethan Howland
Senior Reporter Jan. 11, 2023

Dive Brief:

  • Pacific Gas & Electric’s proposal to transfer 5.6 GW of non-nuclear generating assets to a new subsidiary in preparation for selling a 49.9% stake lacks enough details, including how it would affect the utility’s transmission rates, to be approved, according to Tuesday filings at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
  • The California Hydropower Reform Coalition and other organizations objected to PG&E seeking approval of its plan in a two-part process, with a request for approval of a sale expected to come later this year. Details of the sale are needed to know whether moving the power assets to Pacific Generation, the subsidiary, is in the public interest, according to the coalition………………………….. more

January 12, 2023 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Bangladesh puts energy hopes in first nuclear power plant, despite delay, and climate concerns

Global disruption to gas supplies has led to electricity outages in Bangladesh this year, while progress on the Rooppur nuclear power plant has been plagued by construction delays.

Ecobusiness 11 Jan 23 ………………………………………. construction delays, cost concerns and public fears about nuclear safety are clouding the outlook for the new plant.

Bangladesh’s power generation capacity currently exceeds demand – but the fuel needed to run existing plants partly relies on imports, including a quarter of natural gas used, with prices rocketing this year after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

………………………. treating nuclear as a renewable or green energy source remains controversial worldwide, as the spent fuel left after power production is not fully recyclable and nuclear waste is hazardous.

Nuclear dropped to below 10 per cent of global power generation in 2021, although the recent energy crisis driven by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has seen some reawakening of interest.

The goal of developing a nuclear power plant in Bangladesh dates back to the 1960s, but plans adopted by successive governments over the decades were not implemented due to a lack of funding and skilled engineers……………………………………………

Bangladesh’s vulnerability to climate change impacts is another consideration, as the plant is located in a zone that is prone to extreme weather effects like flooding.

Islam – also a professor at the University of Dhaka – said no public information was available on if and how the design of the nuclear plant takes climate-related risks into account………………………….

January 12, 2023 Posted by | ASIA, politics | Leave a comment

South Korea Curbs Plans for Renewables in Push For More Nuclear

  • Nuclear to account for almost one-third of generation by 2030
  • President Yoon has backed proposals to build more reactors

Bloomberg, By Heesu Lee, January 12, 2023

South Korea will boost nuclear power generation and downgrade its plans for renewable energy as the nation overhauls its electricity mix to meet emissions reduction targets.

Nuclear plants are now expected to account for almost one-third of generation capacity by 2030 up from about 24% forecast in earlier draft proposals, according to government documents published Thursday. Renewable sources are seen generating about 21.6% by………………………………. (Subscribers only)

January 12, 2023 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The One-Person Monopoly of Nuclear Launches

European Leadership Network. Tarja Cronberg |Former Member of the European Parliament, Distinguished Associate Fellow at SIPRI and Member of the Executive Board of the European Leadership Network 12 Jan 23

The international discussion on nuclear weapons, during the war in Ukraine, has focused on one question: Will Putin use nuclear weapons? The thought that nuclear weapons might be used in the Ukraine war, is no longer an abstract fear. A nuclear war may be closer than ever. In this new reality there is a risk seldom talked about, but which is built into our command and control systems: one person is able to decide the fate of the earth. The fundamental question for the nuclear order is not about whether or not Putin, or any other president or dictator, might rely on nuclear weapons as the last choice. The question to be posed is: Do we really want to maintain a nuclear order, where one person is formally able to decide the fate of us all?

The international discussion on nuclear weapons, during the war in Ukraine, has focused on one question: Will Putin use nuclear weapons? The thought that nuclear weapons might be used in the Ukraine war, is no longer an abstract fear. A nuclear war may be closer than ever. In this new reality there is a risk seldom talked about, but which is built into our command and control systems: one person is able to decide the fate of the earth. The fundamental question for the nuclear order is not about whether or not Putin, or any other president or dictator, might rely on nuclear weapons as the last choice. The question to be posed is:

Do we really want to maintain a nuclear order, where one person is formally able to decide the fate of us all? Tarja Cronberg

Traditionally there has been a nuclear “taboo”: nuclear weapons could be threatened but not used.  They were only for deterrence, to prevent a nuclear attack, not to be used to win a war. The famous Reagan-Gorbachev statement made clear that “a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought”. There was also empirical evidence. The weapons have not been used after Hiroshima, although there were over 70,000 nuclear weapons during the Cold War. It is easy to argue that nuclear deterrence has guaranteed peace and prosperity for more than 70 years. Nevertheless, there was always a small exception to this near-total trust in deterrence…………………………………………………

The situation leaves the world in a dangerous place. The Gaddafis and the Husseins could be destroyed by military interventions and regime change before any catastrophe occurred. This is not the case for the Trumps and the Putins. As leaders of the world´s superpowers there is no external power able to intervene, although there may have been plans to kill Putin. The nuclear superpower leaders are more or less democratically elected and their removal will take place according to the laws and politics of the superpower in question. Where does this leave us?…………………………….

Without any solid management system to avoid a nuclear catastrophe, world survival is in the hands of the leaders of its superpowers. Although the decision- making process may involve consultations, the decision is ultimately, even in the case of Russia today, in the hands of one person. Today, given that the world is threatened by a nuclear war, there should be a serious discussion on how the risks of this “one-person nuclear command” could be avoided or at least minimised. The discussion could take at least three different directions…………..

there is an urgent need for a stronger international institutional responsibility for the governance of national decisions on nuclear threats and use. Firstly, there is a need for an international transparency survey on how the nuclear weapon states have defined their first-or second strike launch responsibility. A second phase would seek to establish some international guidelines for national procedures in order to avoid ad hoc, illegal measures in a concrete crisis. So far we have been lucky, but ”luck is not a strategy” as was so ably pointed out by the Secretary-General of the United Nations at the 2022 NPT Review Conference.

January 12, 2023 Posted by | 2 WORLD, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Arctic nuclear waste ship gets funding

Russia’s Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has signed the decree granting 12,4 billion rubles to build a transport- and maintenance ship for spent nuclear fuel and radioactive waste from the country’s fleet of icebreakers.

Thomas Nilsen Barents Observer, 11 Jan 23

Not since Soviet days has more nuclear-powered icebreakers been operating at the same time in Arctic waters, the Barents Observer reported last week.

Russia has over the last few years put three brand new icebreakers of the Project 22220 class into operation. Two more are under construction in St. Petersburg and a sixth vessel recently got funding with a goal to put it into service by 2030.

Each of the new icebreakers is powered with two RITM-200 reactors, a reactor type larger than the older Arktika-class icebreakers.

New reactors require new technologies to reload nuclear fuel elements. The service vessel used by Rosatomflot today, the “Imandra”, is from 1980 and does not meet the demands of the new icebreaker fleet, larger in size and numbers.

The new service ship (Project 22770) will be nearly 160 meters long and carry its own cranes to lift in and out containers with spent nuclear fuel or fresh uranium fuel from the icebreaker reactors, either at Rosatom’s service base in Murmansk or in open sea anywhere along the Northern Sea Route………………….. more

January 12, 2023 Posted by | Russia, wastes | Leave a comment

US military deepens ties with Japan and Philippines to instigate proxy war with China like it did with Russia

Kathrin Hille, Financial Times, Sun, 08 Jan 23

The US and Japanese armed forces are rapidly integrating their command structure and scaling up combined operations as Washington and its Asian allies prepare for a possible conflict with China such as a war over Taiwan, according to the top Marine Corps general in Japan.

The two militaries have “seen exponential increases . . . just over the last year” in their operations on the territory they would have to defend in case of a war, Lieutenant General James Bierman, commanding general of the Third Marine Expeditionary Force (III MEF) and of Marine Forces Japan, told the Financial Times in an interview.

Bierman said that the US and its allies in Asia were emulating the groundwork that had enabled western countries to support Ukraine’s resistance to Russia in preparing for scenarios such as a Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

“Why have we achieved the level of success we’ve achieved in Ukraine? A big part of that has been because after Russian aggression in 2014 and 2015, we earnestly got after preparing for future conflict: training for the Ukrainians, pre-positioning of supplies, identification of sites from which we could operate support, sustain operations.

“We call that setting the theatre. And we are setting the theatre in Japan, in the Philippines, in other locations.”

Bierman’s unusually frank comparison between the Ukraine war and a potential conflict with China comes as Beijing has dramatically increased the scale and sophistication of its military manoeuvres near Taiwan in recent years. Japan and the Philippines are also intensifying defence co-operation with the US in the face of mounting Chinese assertiveness.

Japan and the US are set to discuss strengthening their alliance at security talks between the foreign and defence ministers on Wednesday and a summit between US president Joe Biden and Japanese prime minister Fumio Kishida on Friday in Washington. The summit comes as Tokyo embarks on a radical security policy shift that will include increasing defence spending and deploying missiles capable of hitting Chinese territory.

III MEF is the Marine Corps’ only crisis response force permanently stationed outside the US. It operates within the range of Chinese medium- and long-range missiles, with which Beijing seeks to constrain US operational freedom in the region.

The unit is at the heart of a sweeping reform of the Marine Corps that aims to replace its focus on fighting counter-insurgency in the Middle East with creating small units that specialise in operating quickly and clandestinely in the islands and straits of east Asia and the western Pacific to counter Beijing’s “anti-access area denial” strategy.

To realise that strategy, closer integration with allies was vital, Bierman said. In a series of recent exercises, the Marines for the first time set up bilateral ground tactical co-ordination centres rather than exchanging liaisons with allies’ command points.

In another sign of deepening co-operation, specific Japanese military units have been designated as part of the “stand-in force” alongside III MEF and US Navy and Air Force units.

Instead of a “round robin” of Japanese military units working with US counterparts, as in the past, a “standing community of interest” is emerging of allied units with responsibility for operational plans, Bierman added.

He said while the US military was paying attention to Chinese aggressive behaviour around Taiwan, the People’s Liberation Army should not be perceived as being “10 feet tall”.

“When you talk about the complexity, the size of some of the operations they would have to conduct, let’s say [in] an invasion of Taiwan, there will be indications and warnings, and there are specific aspects to that in terms of geography and time, which allow us to posture and be most prepared.”

As part of those preparations, the Philippines plan to allow US forces to preposition weapons and other supplies on five more bases in addition to five where the US has already access.

“You gain a leverage point, a base of operations, which allows you to have a tremendous head start in different operational plans. As we square off with the Chinese adversary, who is going to own the starting pistol and is going to have the ability potentially to initiate hostilities . . . we can identify decisive key terrain that must be held, secured, defended, leveraged.

January 12, 2023 Posted by | politics international, USA | Leave a comment

Rolls Royce’s frustration as government holds back on orders for mininuclear reactors.

  Treasury will reportedly not sign off on investment until
technology approved by regulators. A funding deal for the first fleet of
mini nuclear reactors may not materialise for another 12 months, to the
dismay of domestic leaders in the technology. The government made small
modular reactors a central element of its plans to generate 24GW of energy
from nuclear by 2050, but according to The Times there is significant
uncertainty in Whitehall over the scale and state of investment plans.

 Building 10th Jan 2023

January 12, 2023 Posted by | politics, UK | Leave a comment

 Scottish campaign groups hit back over claims nuclear power is cheaper and more reliable.

Anti-nuclear campaigners say that Caithness could drive the
“green energy” revolution thanks to the skills in the region – largely
due to the decommissioning of the Dounreay plant.

Wick and East Caithness councillor Andrew Jarvie said last month that it was time for the SNP-led
government to ditch its opposition to new nuclear after a breakthrough in
fusion experiments. He claimed the region was missing out on skilled jobs
and future opportunities “because of the SNP and Greens’ illogical
opposition to one of the most reliable and cheap sources of energy”.

Highlands Against Nuclear Transport (HANT) and the Scottish Nuclear Free
Local Authorities (NFLA) hit back, saying Cllr Jarvie was “completely
mistaken” in his assertion that nuclear is the “most reliable and cheapest”
source of energy.

 John O’Groat Journal 11th Jan 2023

January 12, 2023 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, UK | Leave a comment

Terror police investigate after uranium found in package at Heathrow airport

Counter-terrorism police are investigating after a small amount of
uranium was detected in a package at Heathrow airport. Border Force
officers identified the parcel coming into the UK during a routine
screening on December 29.

There are strict rules around handling of the
nuclear fuel, which can be used in so-called “dirty bombs”, designed to
scatter radioactive material. The Met said its Counter Terrorism Command
was contacted in December after a “very small amount of contaminated
material” was identified.

Commander Richard Smith said there is no risk
to the public over the incident. “I want to reassure the public that the
amount of contaminated material was extremely small and has been assessed
by experts as posing no threat to the public,” he said. “Although our
investigation remains ongoing, from our inquiries so far, it does not
appear to be linked to any direct threat. As the public would expect,
however, we will continue to follow up on all available lines of inquiry to
ensure this is definitely the case.”

 Telegraph 10th Jan 2023

 Dirty bomb fears as ‘several kilos of URANIUM’ is found in cargo at
Package ‘shipped from Pakistan to UK-based Iranians’ is at centre
of Met Police anti-terror probe after being discovered when it triggered
airport alarms.

 Daily Mail 10th Jan 2023

January 12, 2023 Posted by | incidents, UK | Leave a comment

Ukraine war follows decades of warnings that NATO expansion into Eastern Europe could provoke Russia

The Conversation Ronald Suny, Professor of History and Political Science, University of Michigan, 1 March 2022,

As fighting rages across Ukraine, two versions of reality that underlie the conflict stare across a deep divide, neither conceding any truth to the other.

The more widespread and familiar view in the West, particularly in the United States, is that Russia is and has always been an expansionist state, and its current president, Vladimir Putin, is the embodiment of that essential Russian ambition: to build a new Russian empire.

“This was … always about naked aggression, about Putin’s desire for empire by any means necessary,” President Joe Biden said on Feb. 24, 2022.

The opposing view argues that Russia’s security concerns are in fact genuine, and that NATO expansion eastward is seen by Russians as directed against their country. Putin has been clear for many years that if continued, the expansion would likely be met with serious resistance by the Russians, even with military action.

That perspective isn’t held just by Russians; some influential American foreign policy experts have subscribed to it as well.

Among others, Biden’s CIA director, William J. Burns, has been warning about the provocative effect of NATO expansion on Russia since 1995. That’s when Burns, then a political officer in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, reported to Washington that “hostility to early NATO expansion is almost universally felt across the domestic political spectrum here.”

NATO edging toward Russia

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization, or NATO, is a military alliance that was formed by the U.S., Canada and several European nations in 1949 to contain the USSR and the spread of communism.

Now, the view in the West is that it is no longer an anti-Russian alliance but is instead a kind of collective security agreement aimed at protecting its members from outside aggression and promoting peaceful mediation of conflicts within the alliance.

Recognizing the sovereignty of all states and their right to ally with whatever state they wish, NATO acceded over time to the requests of European democracies to join the alliance. Former members of the Soviet-established Warsaw Pact, which was a Soviet version of NATO, were also brought into NATO in the 1990s, along with three former Soviet republics – Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – in 2004.

The Western view is that the Kremlin is supposed to understand and accept that the alliance’s activities, among them war games replete with American tanks staged in nearby Baltic states and rockets stationed in Poland and Romania – which the U.S. says are aimed at Iran – in no way present a threat to Russian security.

Many warnings about Russia’s reaction

Russian elite and broad public opinion have both long been opposed to such expansion, the placement of American rockets in Poland and Romania and the arming of Ukraine with Western weaponry.

When President Bill Clinton’s administration moved to bring Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic into NATO, Burns wrote that the decision was “premature at best, and needlessly provocative at worst.”……………………..

Responding to Russia’s insecurity

There are different outcomes to the current crisis depending on whether you see its cause as Russian imperialism or NATO expansionism.

If you think the war in Ukraine is the work of a determined imperialist, any actions short of defeating the Russians will look like 1938 Munich-style appeasement and Joe Biden becomes the reviled Neville Chamberlain, the British prime minister who acceded to Hitler’s demands for territory in Czechoslovakia only to find himself deceived as the Nazis steadily marched to war.

If, however, you believe that Russia has legitimate concerns about NATO expansion, then the door is open to discussion, negotiation, compromise and concessions.

Having spent decades studying Russian history and politics, I believe that in foreign policy, Putin has usually acted as a realist, unsentimentally and amorally taking stock of the power dynamics among states. He looks for possible allies ready to consider Russia’s interests – recently he found such an ally in China – and is willing to resort to armed force when he believes Russia is threatened………………………………..

Leaders like Putin who feel cornered and ignored may strike out. He has already threatened “military and political consequences” if the currently neutral Finland and Sweden attempt to join NATO. Paradoxically, NATO has endangered small countries on the border of Russia, as Georgia learned in 2008, that aspire to join the alliance.

One wonders – as did the American diplomat George F. Kennan, the father of the Cold War containment doctrine who warned against NATO expansion in 1998 – whether the advancement of NATO eastward has increased the security of European states or made them more vulnerable.

January 12, 2023 Posted by | EUROPE, politics international | Leave a comment

Worlds oceans were the hottest ever recorded in 2022

The world’s oceans were the hottest ever recorded in 2022, demonstrating
the profound and pervasive changes that human-caused emissions have made to
the planet’s climate. More than 90% of the excess heat trapped by
greenhouse gas emissions is absorbed in the oceans.

The records, starting
in 1958, show an inexorable rise in ocean temperature, with an acceleration
in warming after 1990. Sea surface temperatures are a major influence on
the world’s weather. Hotter oceans help supercharge extreme weather,
leading to more intense hurricanes and typhoons and more moisture in the
air, which brings more intense rains and flooding. Warmer water also
expands, pushing up sea levels and endangering coastal cities.

 Guardian 11th Jan 2023

January 12, 2023 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Extreme weather is pushing more people to flee their homes

 Governments must get to grips with the links between the climate crisis
and the plight of migrants around the world, experts have said, as
increasingly extreme weather is a mounting danger to already vulnerable
displaced people, and is potentially pushing more people to flee their

Migrants and displaced people number more than 100 million around
the world, mainly in developing countries, and are among the populations
most at risk from extreme weather. However, little work has been done on
addressing the plight of migrants afflicted by climate breakdown, or on the
risk that more extremes of weather will push more people into moving. The
subject received little mention at the Cop27 UN climate summit in Egypt
late last year, and experts are hoping for greater focus in 2023.

 Guardian 10th Jan 2023

January 12, 2023 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change | Leave a comment

Nuclear colonialism? Nuclear country Canada “helps” Ghana to develop nuclear waste disposal facility

Nuclear power ambitions in Ghana receive boost with disposal facilities, ESI Africa By Nomvuyo Tena, Jan 10, 2023

Ghana has joined a pilot project run by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for the disposal of sealed radioactive sources. The disposal facilities will bring the country closer to its nuclear power ambitions.

The IAEA is providing technological and engineering support for the first of a kind construction and implementation of borehole disposal facilities for radioactive waste. This is part of a pilot project underway in Malaysia and Ghana, funded by Canada……………….

Significant progress in the regulatory framework bring nuclear power closer

Ghana is at an advanced stage of implementing its borehole project, with significant progress having been made in the regulatory authorisation processes. The borehole facility construction is expected to begin as soon as the licensing review process is completed.

“We are implementing the borehole disposal system as a final solution for disused sealed radioactive sources generated in the country,” said Eric Tetteh Glover, head of the Radioactive Waste Management Centre of the Radiation Protection Institute, Ghana Atomic Energy Commission. “The successful implementation of the borehole disposal system will provide the country with a licensed disposal facility, and at the same time will further enhance the human and technical capabilities required for the country’s nuclear power programme.”…………………………………….. more

January 12, 2023 Posted by | AFRICA, wastes | Leave a comment

Deal on safe zone for Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant getting harder -IAEA


ROME, Jan 11 (Reuters) – Brokering a deal on a safe zone around Ukraine’s Russian-controlled Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is getting harder because of the involvement of the military in talks, the head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog said on Wednesday.

The Soviet-era plant, Europe’s largest, was captured by Russian forces in March, soon after their invasion of Ukraine. It has repeatedly come under fire in recent months, raising fears of a nuclear disaster.

“I don’t believe that (an agreement) is impossible, but it is not an easy negotiation,” International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Rafael Grossi said in an interview with Italian public television RAI.

Grossi, who previously said he hoped to broker a deal on protecting the plant before the end of 2022, said talks with Kyiv and Moscow had become more complicated because they involve not just diplomats, but also military officers………………………..

Moscow and Kyiv have accused each other of shelling the Zaporizhzhia facility.

January 12, 2023 Posted by | safety, Ukraine | Leave a comment