Poll finds support for nuclear phaseout, SwissInfo Ch By Urs Geiser , 21 Oct 16
A proposal to decommission Switzerland’s nuclear power plants by 2029 has the backing of a majority of citizens, according to a survey conducted seven weeks ahead of a nationwide vote. Despite this, pollsters believe the initiative is likely to be defeated on November 27.
Supporters of the Green Party proposal had a 21% lead over opponents seven weeks before polling day, while 7% of respondents were undecided, results published on Friday showed.
“The political left, women and citizens in the French-speaking part of the country are in favour,” said Claude Longchamp of the leading GfS Bern research and polling institute.
Supporters face a strong alliance of opponents, including centre-right parties, parliament, the government and the business community.
Longchamp said the grassroots of the centrist Christian Democrats are likely to play a key role……..http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/november-27-vote_poll-finds-support-for-nuclear-phase-out/42529278
Charities reject case for nuclear extensions as EDF begins lobbying of SNP, Common Space, Nathanael Williams @RobertJSomynne 18 Oct 16 As the SNP ends its autumn conference, green groups resist attempts to extend nuclear power in Scotland
ENVIRONMENTAL groups have come out in opposition to attempts by the energy company EDF to persuade the SNP to extend the lives of Scotland’s two nuclear power stations.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Scotland has also dismissed claims by the energy giant that the only way for Scotland to meet its energy demands was to invest more in nuclear power.
Instead, campaigners have emphasised the importance of renewables as the main source of economic growth, jobs and sustainability.
“Independent analysis has shown that our electricity system could be powered almost entirely by renewables within two decades without the need for any gas, coal or nuclear power in Scotland.” Lang Banks
Speaking to CommonSpace, Lang Banks, the director of WWF Scotland said: “Despite EDF’s claims, there’s simply no need for the two remaining nuclear power stations in Scotland to have their lives further extended.
“Independent analysis has shown that our electricity system could be powered almost entirely by renewables within two decades without the need for any gas, coal or nuclear power in Scotland. The analysis also shows that Scotland would maintain security of supply and its position as an electricity-exporting nation.
“From opinion polling, we know that the majority of the Scottish public support the view that all of our nation’s electricity should be generated from pollution-free renewables.
The Scottish Government’s forthcoming energy strategy provides the perfect opportunity to set out a bold vision of becoming the EU’s first fully renewable electricity nation by 2030.
“Embracing such a vision would ensure that we secure the maximum economic and social benefits that would come from a transition toward a zero-carbon society.”
“Despite EDF’s claims, there’s simply no need for the two remaining nuclear power stations in Scotland to have their lives further extended.” Lang Banks
WWF was responding to the French energy company, which owns two Scottish nuclear power stations, announcing at an SNP fringe event that it will re-started its lobbying the Scottish Government for an extension of the lives of both power stations.
Paris-based EDF took over the plants at Torness and Hunterston when previous operator British Energy plc went into administration over mounting costs of storing the highly radioactive residue created………
“The Scottish Government’s forthcoming energy strategy provides the perfect opportunity to set out a bold vision of becoming the EU’s first fully renewable electricity nation by 2030.” Lang Banks
Last month, WWF Scotland was among a number of charities including Friends of the Earth Scotland (FoES) which protested the decision to give a go-ahead to the new nuclear plant at Hinkley in Sussex. The main reason for campaigners objections to the Hinkley plant were the vast costs of construction and the better deals for customers if solar and hydro were invested in.
They additionally argue that Scotland’s progress in renewables capacity warrants further development of wind, hydro, solar and tidal and a rejection of nuclear. WWF Scotland’s research showed that this year, renewables generated 57 per cent of Scotland’s electricity consumption. The Scottish government in turn has set a target that by 2020 the equivalent of 100 per cent of gross annual electricity consumption will be renewables derived.
From a legal perspective, the building of any new nuclear power station in Scotland would require consent from Scottish Government Ministers under the Electricity Act of 1989.
The Scottish Government at the moment has stated it will not seek new nuclear facilities but has not been explicit in its rejection of extensions to existing ones. However, they were not avalible to comment when contacted by CommonSpace. https://www.commonspace.scot/articles/9670/charities-reject-case-nuclear-extensions-edf-begins-lobbying-snp
Nuclear waste dump protesters bring the fight from outback South Australia to the city, By Lauren Waldhuter http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-10-15/nuclear-waste-dump-protesters-bring-the-fight-to-adelaide/7935954
Traditional landowners from South Australia’s outback have brought their fight against proposed nuclear storage facilities to the steps of Parliament House.
About 3,000 people rallied against proposed nuclear waste dumps, with Aboriginal families affected by nuclear testing at Maralinga among the crowd.
The State Government is considering whether it should store the world’s high-grade nuclear waste at a site somewhere in South Australia.
At the same time, the Federal Government is considering building its first storage facility for Australia’s low-grade radioactive waste, having short-listed Wallerberdina station, near Hawker in the Flinders Ranges, as a preferred site.
Traditional landowner Karina Lester said many people did not want to see either proposal go ahead.
“We are starting to unite and we are starting to really think about how we’re going to fight this, because it concerns us and we have a cultural responsibility,” she said.
“People travelled from the Mid North [and] from Ceduna as well to be part of this event and it was so important that they gathered here today to say ‘enough is enough’.
“Having Yalata crew, having Ceduna crew, the Yappala crew being involved is so strong for us as Aboriginal people.”
Renowned film director Scott Hicks lent his voice to the cause, with particular concern about the high-grade dump.
“To me it’s an idea that doesn’t make sense on any level I can look at it,” he said.
“It doesn’t make economic sense. We can’t even predict the price of coal a month from now. How can we predict the price of nuclear waste 100 years from now?
“Why would we want to leave a legacy for our children’s, children’s children and beyond 100,000 years, that can never be taken away?”
What is being proposed?
- Low-to-intermediate level radioactive waste generated in Australia stored in a purpose-built facility
- It would include materials such as nuclear medicine by-products
- This waste is currently stored in more than 100 sites across Australia, in metropolitan areas, regional towns and cities
- The project promises at least 15 ongoing jobs and $10 million in funding for the host community once the facility is operational
- The Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission found SA could store the world’s high-grade nuclear waste
- Sealed waste would be stored 500 metres underground in a purpose-built facility
- The facility could create up to 5,000 jobs during construction and 600 ongoing jobs
- It is tipped to generate $5.6 billion of annual revenue for SA once established
Swiss ban new nuclear reactors http://reneweconomy.com.au/2016/swiss-ban-new-nuclear-reactors-39247 By Craig Morris on 11 October 2016 Energy Transition
Another setback for the “nuclear renaissance”: Switzerland voted on Friday to focus more on renewables and efficiency. For the first time ever, new nuclear plants are officially off the table—though admittedly, none were planned. The Swiss just “adopted the Energiewende,” writes the Neue Züricher Zeitung. Is no one paying attention? Craig Morris has the details.
Now here’s a news item you probably haven’t heard, at least judging from what I can gather on the internet: Switzerland’s new Energy Act (Energiegesetz, PDF) of 30 September 2016. You would think that, given its scope and Switzerland’s central role in Europe’s power sector, the following contents would have warranted a mention at, say, Reuters, CNN, Bloomberg, and Co.:
- The generation of non-hydro renewable power is to grow from 1.7 TWh last year (PDF in German and French) to 4.4 TWh by 2020 and 11.4 TWh by 2035 (nearly tenfold).
- “Per capita energy consumption” is to shrink by 16 percent from 2000 to 2020 and by 43 percent by 2035. “Per capita” is an important caveat in a small country whose population can easily grow quickly. (Switzerland’s is up around 10 percent over the past decade, like even smaller Norway’s.) Unfortunately, the law does not specify the most important aspect here: final or primaryenergy?
- Power consumption is to drop by 3 percent by 2020 and 13 percent by 2035.
- The law also, confusingly, speaks of “expanding” hydropower to 37.4 TWh by 2035 – even though it came in at 39.5 TWh last year. (If any readers know how to dissect this, please drop us a comment below.)
- It amends the 2003 Nuclear Energy Act (here’s the old one) to ban permits for new nuclear reactors. It also bans the reprocessing and export of spent fuel rods for reprocessing (except for research purposes with the consent of the Bundesrat). And “changes may not be made to existing nuclear plants.”
There’s a lot more in the law, much of which deals with the policy mechanisms (level of feed-in tariffs, etc.). But what’s above is a real breakthrough. So why has it gone unreported in English?
One reason may be that a referendum could change everything, as the Swiss press explains (in German). But the report also suggests there is little support for such a referendum in industry, so the referendum may not even take place; in other words, the Swiss business world is happier with renewables and efficiencythan with old-school energy production, consumption, and waste.
Another referendum will be held on 27 November 2016: the one for a closure of the existing reactors (in German). It does not necessarily stand a good chance of passing; parliamentarians overwhelmingly reject it (it’s an idea of the Swiss Greens). On the other hand, a recent survey of the public revealed support for a total phaseout by 2029 (basically, a limited service life of 45 years per reactor). This idea may have as much as 58 percent public support (in German)—possibly another example of politicians out of touch with the people. The first reactor to be shut down would then go offline in 2019. Leibstadt, the youngest, would be the last to go in 2029.
Opponents of the phaseout referendum will reportedly not try to reject the idea of a nuclear phaseout outright. Instead, they will try to win over the “silent majority” of undecided voters in the middle of the political spectrum by simply arguing that setting a specific date or service life for all reactors makes no sense. This clever tactic is likely to succeed, but a quick comparison with the historic debate in Germany over a nuclear phaseout suggests something less savory for nuclear supporters. Remember that slippery slope? By the time you resort to the tactic of “setting a date for a phaseout makes no sense,” you have reached the bottom of it. There is no way back up the slope for nuclear at that point.
Oddly, the Swiss press outlets all report that the new law is part of the government’s “Energy Strategy 2050” even though “2050” is never even mentioned in the new Act. This law is in fact just a starting point. By the end of this year, we will probably know what direction the country is headed.
One wonders when the international media will catch on. Maybe never—or did you know that Switzerland implemented a nuclear phaseout (by 2034) in the wake of Fukushima back in 2011?
Anti-nuclear activists mark Fermi 1 incident It was a half-century ago that plant had a partial meltdown By | BLADE STAFF WRITER Oct. 6, 2016 MONROE — Anti-nuclear activists marked the 50th anniversary of Fermi 1’s partial meltdown Wednesday with a peaceful rally at downtown Monroe’s Loranger Square Pavilion, during which they called for America to embrace more renewable energy and support efforts to safeguard the public from radiation exposure…….
“The striking thing to me is — 50 years later — there are still lessons unlearned,” Terry Lodge, Toledo Coalition for Safe Energy spokesman, said.
Mr. Keegan, Mr. Lochbaum, and Mr. Lodge were among seven speakers who addressed about two dozen people Wednesday at a news conference which began at the exact moment the meltdown was reported to authorities 50 years earlier.
Although eclipsed by Three Mile Island and more significant events in other parts of the world, such as the Fukushima Daiichi meltdown of 2011 in Japan and the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 near Kiev, Russia, the Fermi 1 incident inspired the 1975 John G. Fuller book We Almost Lost Detroit, as well as a protest song by the late singer Gil Scott-Heron……http://www.toledoblade.com/local/2016/10/06/Anti-nuclear-activists-mark-Fermi-1-incident.html
A coalition of environmental groups including Food & Water Watch and the New York Public Interest Research Group have united to oppose what they estimate as an almost $8 billion effort to subsidize three upstate nuclear power plants: the James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant and Nine Mile Point Nuclear Generating Station outside Oswego and the R.E. Ginna plant east of Rochester.
The state Public Service Commission voted in early August to approve a rate increase for the power generated by the plants to pay for the subsidies. Since then, a group of downstate lawmakers have called for the PSC to reconsider that action and be more transparent in its analysis, noting that the majority of the cost of keeping the plants on line will be borne by downstate rate-payers.
On Wednesday, the environmental coalition made the same economic argument, estimating that residential consumers will be on the hook for an estimated $2.3 billion over the 12-year life of the deal. Con Ed ($705.8 million) and Long Island Power Authority ($501.4 million) would bear the largest proportionate share of the cost based on their number of customers.
Blair Horner of NYPIRG said that keeping the plants in operation was like “subsidizing the horse-and-buggy industry while Henry Ford is rolling cars off the Assembly line.”
The coalition plans to mount a grassroots effort to kill the subsidies in much the same way that the natural gas drilling technique known as hydrofracking was blocked…….http://blog.timesunion.com/capitol/archives/268142/green-groups-call-on-state-to-scrap-upstate-nuclear-subsidies/
Nuclear plan gets backlash from left, right, Daily Star, By Joe Mahoney CNHI State Reporter, 5 Oct 16 ALBANY — A coalition of environmental and consumer activists warned Wednesday that New York electricity customers will be jolted by a “huge tax” stemming from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plan to subsidize aging nuclear power plants.
Thousands protest against nuclear power in northern France http://en.rfi.fr/environment/20161001-thousands-protest-against-nuclear-power-northern-france Several thousand people demonstrated against the construction of nuclear reactors near the northern French town of Flamanville on Saturday. British opponents of the planned reactor at Hinkley Point joined European opponents of nuclear power.
The protesters gathered at Siouville-Hague, between a nuclear waste treatement centre at La Hague and the site of a third nuclear reactor at Flamanville, which is currently under construction.
The first protest against the plan took place 10 years ago at Cherbourg on the Channel coast.
French power company EDF, which is also building the Hinkley Point reactor, says it should be ready to operate in the third quarter of 2018, six years late.
Its cost has trebled to 10.5 billion euros after a number of problems.
French Green MP and possible presidential candidate Cécile Duflot joined the demonstration, as did a number of British anti-nuclear activists.
Opponents claim that nuclear power is dangerous and expensive. The sector employs about 10,000 people in Normandy.
Uranium Mining in Niger: Tuareg Activist Takes on French Nuclear Company,Spiegel.de By Cordula Meyer Translated from the German by Christopher Sultan, 2 Oct 16
Some 2,200 people work there. In the plant, workers break apart large pieces of rock, grind them into dust and then leach out the uranium using large amounts of water and acid. The end product is a yellow material known as yellowcake. The yellowcake is filled into barrels and then transported in convoys to Benin, 2,500 kilometers (1,560 miles) away. From there, the yellowcake is loaded onto ships bound for Marseilles.
Radioactive Dust Alhacen is a member of the Agir tribe in the Aïr Mountains. His father led camel caravans carrying salt and dates. Alhacen accompanied his father for the first time when he was 11. He began working in the mine about 10 years later, in 1978. His job was to repair the machines that crush the rock. Every evening, he would go home to his family and play with his children, still wearing his dusty work overalls. His wife washed his clothes, which were full of radioactive dust.
The first time Alhacen heard about radiation was in 1986, after the Chernobyl reactor accident. From then on, he was given a paper respiratory mask to wear. Eight years later, a lung ailment forced him to stop working. He was transferred to a new department that handled radiation protection. He is still officially employed there today, but the company has relieved him of his duties. “His suspensions were justified by his inappropriate conduct (unjustified absence etc…),” Areva told SPIEGEL in a statement. Alhacen is worried about his job, because he needs the income for his 13 children. But being furloughed also means that he has more time for his fight, and for the victims.
He now has time, for example, to visit the widow Fatima Taoka in her mud-walled house. Her husband Mamadou worked in the mine, where he drilled the rock into smaller pieces, until he fell ill. “He was always strong, but then he had nothing but pain and became as thin as a stick,” says Fatima. It was something in the lungs and kidneys, she says, but the people at the hospital did not tell her what exactly it was.
‘The Doctors Don’t Tell the Truth’
“They died of diseases that we didn’t understand,” says Alhacen. He says that when he asked hospital staff what had killed his coworkers, he didn’t receive an answer. Sometimes, he says, the doctors said it was AIDS, but this made Alhacen suspicious, because Niger had a low incidence of AIDS. The fact that the hospital belongs to Areva also made him suspicious. It was when Mamadou died that Alhacen decided to set up Aghirin Man.
That was 10 years ago. Since then, he has repeatedly heard accounts of ailments that resemble what happened to Mamadou. While making his rounds, he also visits Amalhe Algabit. The former assistant surveyor still has his I.D. card, coated in plastic, with the number 1328. His chest hurts, and he hides his emaciated body in a white robe and his collapsed face behind a pair of large sunglasses. He often feels as if he were suffocating. He doesn’t know why this is happening to him, but is afraid that he doesn’t have much time left. “I’m already so thin,” he says.
Rakia Agouma is a widow whose husband died on Sept. 23, 2009. For 31 years, he had driven trucks containing rocks in the mine. Three years before his death, he had severe pain in his chest and back, but tried to remain in good spirits. It was what Rakia had always liked about him. When he died at Areva’s hospital, she was apparently told it was malaria. “The doctors don’t tell the truth,” she says. “They’re liars.”
Areva says that everyone in Arlit and Akokan receives free medical treatment, even former workers. The company also claims that not a single worker has died of occupational cancer……….
Areva insists that it has satisfied the highest international standards for maximum radiation doses since 2002. Joseph Brehan, a Paris attorney, says: “The improvements aren’t that significant.” He recently traveled to Arlit to meet with his client, Almoustapha Alhacen. Last year, Areva signed an agreement that authorizes Sherpa to examine the working conditions in the mines. In return, Sherpa must coordinate its activities with Areva. Together they intend to introduce a comprehensive health monitoring system.
Depending on Areva
This is the problem with a powerful corporation. Criirad, Aghirin Man and Sherpa are small organizations that survive on donations. Even Alhacen is a critic that Areva can still tolerate, because he too has arguably made a deal with the devil. He still works for Areva. The company has furloughed him, but he still lives rent-free in a house owned by Areva and known as RA4, No. 6. The house has four rooms, and there are four goats in a shed in the inner courtyard. By Arlit standards, Alhacen is a prosperous man. “If I lose the job, I have to get out of the house — right away.”
There is no other place to work in Arlit than in the plant. Arlit is Areva. And even a critic like Alhacen depends on Areva……….http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/uranium-mining-in-niger-tuareg-activist-takes-on-french-nuclear-company-a-686774-2.html
Thousands of Japanese protestors want an end to nuclear power, as well as shutdown of Monju reprocessing plant
Anti-nuclear rally calls for more than just a Monju shutdown http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201609230047.html By RYUJI KUDO/ Staff Writer September 23, 2016 Thousands of anti-nuclear demonstrators gathered in Tokyo on Sept. 22 to demand the government go beyond decommissioning the troubled Monju prototype fast-breeder reactor and abandon its plans to restart other nuclear power plants.
“We definitely don’t need the money-sucking and dangerous Monju,” said Hisae Sawachi, a writer and a member of the organizing committee of the demonstration, which took place under the banner “No nukes, No war.” “Why don’t government officials have the courage to close down all the other nuclear power plants?”
The rally, at Yoyogi Park in Tokyo’s Shibuya Ward, followed the government’s decision this week to unplug the reactor, which has hardly generated any electricity despite the more than 1 trillion yen ($9.9 billion) spent on it over two decades.
Masaichi Miyashita, who heads the secretariat of an anti-nuclear group in Fukui Prefecture, told the rally that officials in Tsuruga in the prefecture, where the reactor is situated, are opposed to the government decision to decommission the reactor and want to keep it.
“I wonder how local leaders calling for the continuation of the Monju program consider the health and lives of residents,” he said. “I would like you, demonstrators, to continue to demand the decommissioning of Monju by pressuring the government not to waste taxpayers’ money.”
An estimated 9,500 people attended the rally, according to the organizer, which identifies itself as a citizens’ group that is collecting 10 million signatures for a petition to say “sayonara” to nuclear power. Satoshi Kamata, a journalist who has written about the nuclear industry and a member of the committee, said the government should phase out the entire nuclear program.
“Unplugging Monju is just a starting point in ending Japan’s nuclear fuel recycling policy and the restart of nuclear power plants, as well as in changing the course of the nation’s nuclear power policy,” he said.
It could have been an ISIS terrorist. Lucky it was only a peace protestor holding up nuclear weapons convoy
- 78-year-old anti-nuclear campaigner lies under military truck in Stirling
- The vehicle thought to be carrying nuclear warheads was part of a convoy
- Police intervened and stopped traffic so it could continue trip to Scotland
By JESSICA DUNCAN FOR MAILONLINE 17 September 2016
The incredible moment a 78-year-old retired teacher managed to hold up four military trucks thought to be carrying nuclear warheads has emerged online.
Shocking moment retired teacher, 77, holds up nuke convoy
The vehicles with their large police convoy were spotted passing through Raploch, in Stirling, at around 5pm yesterday after they had left the Atomic Weapons Establishment Burghfield near Reading on Wednesday to make their way up to Coulport, Scotland.
But they were stopped by two activists including Brian Quail, an anti-nukes campaigner who is also believed to be a former teacher, and his younger colleague Alasdair Ibbotson, 21.
Speaking to the Mail Online Mr Ibbotson, who is a student and Green Party supporter, said: ‘I have been campaigning for nuclear weapon disarmament since I was 16. I am passionate about it because at the end of the day it causes the mass murder of millions of people, and is just wrong on every level.
‘The money spend on trident could be better spent on our NHS.
‘And if a pensioner and a student can stop them, anyone else with actually ill intent could do.
‘The MOD need to think about how this and whether they should use the road at all.‘We knew the convoy was passing through the area around that time because we have a national network tracking when they leave the Atomic Weapons Establishment Burghfield and head to Coulport in Scotland.
‘We don’t know what was on board but we do know they are currently undertaking an upgrade programme and we believe regular parts are being taken between the two bases to be reassembled.’
Mr Quail and Mr Ibbotson were seen working as a duo to stop one of the vehicles.
Mr Ibbotson first jumped out in front of one of the vans with his hands above his head while the OAP quickly lay on the floor wedging himself in front of one of the back wheels.
Police on motorbikes rushed to drag the first protester to the roundabout but it took over two minutes and more than six police personnel to remove Mr Quail from under one of the vans.
The younger man has another attempt to lie down on the road as police move him to the pavement before ten members of the police are required to get them into the back of police vans.
The incident also brought rush hour traffic to a standstill as police swarmed the area and other road users got out of their cars to see what’s happening.
It is reported that the convoy was held up for over 20 minutes as police apprehended the two protesters.
The five minute clip, posted by Stirling University Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), is filmed at a roundabout in the city and begins with the person behind the camera saying that the footage is being filmed ‘about a mile from the town centre’ over the sound of police sirens.
The police escort and first lorry make it past the protesters but the third vehicle in the convoy is forced to slam on its brakes as the two men dart out in front of it with their hands above their heads.
With the incident causing an ever-increasing tailback of rush-hour traffic, it takes over six officers to eventually remove the man and sit him up on the nearby pavement.
A spokesman for Police Scotland said: ‘Two males have been arrested and charged for a breach of the peace after a military convoy was disrupted as it made its way through Stirling on Thursday, September 15.
‘Both men, aged 21 and 78, have been reported to the Procurator Fiscal and are expected to appear in court at a later date…………. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3792600/If-stop-Terrifying-moment-77-year-old-retired-teacher-student-21-holds-nuclear-weapons-convoy.html
Australian Delegation to France Blockaded By Anti-Nuclear Activists http://earthfirstjournal.org/newswire/2016/09/05/australian-delegation-to-france-blockaded-by-anti-nuclear-activists/#more-51943 from Earth First! Newswire On the morning of September 1st an Australian delegation on a parliamentary inquiry into the management of nuclear waste, was blockaded in North-East France by anti-nuclear activists.
The delegation was visiting the National Radioactive Waste Management Agency (ANDRA) facilities in the municipality of Bure, where an anti-nuclear movement under the banner of Bure Zone Libre (Bure Liberated Zone, BZL) has been burgeoning in recent years.
A group of about twenty masked activists dressed in white overalls and armed with water guns, drums and a sound system blocked the Australian delegation from entering the ANDRA laboratory, forcing the delegation to turn around and leave.
“We’re here in solidarity with indigenous resistance to the planned nuclear facility in Australia,” said one activist with a red clown nose. “Nuclear industry endangers life itself, and we will resist it everywhere.”
The BZL movement recently got national headlines in France for toppling a three kilometer long wall which ANDRA has erected around the forest near Bure. The wall was intended to stop the group from reoccupying the forest which ANDRA aims to uproot for the construction of a controversial nuclear waste facility.
“Wherever they’ll build walls, we’ll turn them into wall jam,” the activist laughed, explaining the French wordplay confiture de mur, as mur means both blackberry and wall.
About twenty gendarmes (French military police) patrolled Bure after the action had already ended. The area has been increasingly militarized recently, with activists facing trumped legal charges.
The BZL activists sent the Australian delegates a letter explaining their actions, presented below.
Letter to Australian delegation:
Dear distinguished Australian visitors,
Nuclear industry is a ticking time bomb, whether radioactive waste is dumped in Bure, Wallerberdina, or anywhere else. There is no known way to permanently neutralize it. All claims to the contrary are unfounded (visit nirs.org for details). By accepting to dump nuclear waste in Australia you are not only endangering the lives of aboriginal people and Australians in the region, but of wildlife and of the lives of those who will suffer the consequences nuclear production from extraction to waste everywhere.
Here in Bure, Andra’s project has already cost the lives of two workers, most recently last January, showing the company’s incompetence and disrespect for human life. Undemocratically and illegally imposed on us, the costs of the Cigeo waste project rise as resistance to it is burgeoning, manifesting in absurd military and police presence in the area.
As nuclear power proves to be obsolete and dangerous the world over, and as sustainable alternatives are increasingly available, resistance materializes in Australia as well. You can choose to fight for a just, ecologically balanced world now, and leave Andra’s profit-driven propagandists to listen to what we have to say, or meet us from the other side of the barricades. We are fighting for our lives and for the lives of our children.
We are a growing contingent of local and international activists occupying Bure to stop nuclear catastrophe. In our collective way of organizing and living we present an alternative to nuclear waste and to the sick world which produces it.
Groups fear no nuclear debate in Niigata governor’s race http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201609040026.html By YUKO MATSUURA/ Staff Writer September 4, 2016 NIIGATA–Anti-nuclear groups are pleading with Niigata Governor Hirohiko Izumida to rescind his decision not to run for re-election, seeing him as the “last bastion” to block the restart of the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant.
The groups fear that the absence of Izumida in the Oct. 16 Niigata gubernatorial election, whose official campaigning starts on Sept. 29, will cause a dearth in debate among candidates on the safety of the multiple-reactor nuclear plant operated by Tokyo Electric Power Co. in the prefecture.
“Governor (Izumida) is not aware of his value,” said Kunio Ueno, 66, secretary-general of the organizing committee for a gathering of anti-nuclear groups held in Kashiwazaki on Sept. 3.
Eighteen groups, based in and outside Niigata Prefecture, set up the organizing committee for the gathering and demanded the decommissioning of reactors at the plant.
“We will not allow candidates in the gubernatorial election to conceal a point of contention,” their declaration read. “We will make the issue of the nuclear power plant the biggest point of contention.”
Outside the site of the gathering, several citizens groups collected signatures to ask Izumida to run in the election.
On Aug. 30, Izumida, 53, who is in his third term as Niigata governor, announced he will not seek re-election, citing a report in a local newspaper that was not related to the nuclear issue.
The Nuclear Regulation Authority is currently conducting screenings toward the restart of reactors at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant.
But Izumida has insisted that the causes of the 2011 disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, also operated by TEPCO, must be verified before reactor operations can resume in his prefecture. As of now, only Tamio Mori, 67, mayor of Nagaoka in Niigata Prefecture, has announced he will run in the governor’s race.
On the issue of whether to restart the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear plant, Mori has only said, “I will strictly examine it based on protecting the security and safety of people in the prefecture.”
About 1,300 people took part in the Sept. 3 gathering.
Sayaka Sakazume, 32, of Niigata city, said: “It will be a problem for me if there are no candidates I can vote for based on my thoughts against the reactor restarts. I want a political situation in which we can choose a candidate.”
Grand Canyon tribe fears for its future amid battle against uranium mining Conservationists and other campaigners are urging President Obama to designate 1.7 million acres of the Canyon watershed a national monument before he leaves office, Independent Tim Walker Arizona @timwalker 30 August 2016 “…….First mined for copper at the turn of the 20th Century, the Orphan Mine became a source of uranium to supply the nuclear arms race in the 1950s. It was closed in 1969, but not before contaminating the water in nearby Horn Creek with enough uranium that passing hikers are warned not to drink it. The US National Park Service has already spent millions on a clean-up effort that is still in its early stages. “It proves not everything you dig up can be covered again,” says Kaska, a member of the Havasupai tribe.
The Havasupai, whose name means “people of the blue-green water”, have lived in the Canyon for at least 800 years. The tribe, who today number fewer than 700, rely for their income on the tourists – some 20,000 per year – who visit their reservation to see its strikingly beautiful blue-green waterfalls. But now they fear their lives and livelihoods could be endangered by another uranium mine being drilled nearby.
Canyon Mine sits far from the tourist attractions of the Grand Canyon, six miles to the south in a quiet, 15-acre patch of the Kaibab National Forest. But it is close to Red Butte, a Havasupai sacred site – and, more perilously, it threatens to affect the tribe’s water. The aquifer under the mine flows into Havasupai Springs, their sole water source…
Now, the Havasupai, the Navajo and the Grand Canyon Trust are all part of a coalition of tribes, conservationists and other campaigners hoping to persuade President Obama to create a national monument that would permanently protect the Grand Canyon watershed from any further uranium mining.
Since taking office, Obama has created or enlarged 26 national monuments, protecting almost 550 million acres of federal land and water – at least twice as much as any of his predecessors. Last week, under the US Antiquities Act, he created the largest protected area on Earth, expanding a national marine monument around Hawaii to 582,578 square miles……..http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/grand-canyon-tribe-uranium-mining-obama-national-monument-a7215776.html
Virginia Citizens Consumer Council (VCCC) – strong petition against $19.2 billion nuclear power plant
the $19 billion Unit 3 is being built above an earthquake fault.
The Dangerous Nuclear Plant Rising on DC’s Doorstep http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/09/01/the-dangerous-nuclear-plant-on-dcs-doorstep/ by JOHN LAFORGE, Dominion Virginia Power, a section of the giant utility Dominion, is proceeding unlawfully with construction of its $19-billion-plus power reactor 80 miles from Washington, DC — called North Anna 3 — and must get formal approval from the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) before it can continue, according to a petition filed August 30th by the Virginia Citizens Consumer Council (VCCC😉, a nonprofit group based in Elliston, Va.
The group’s “Petition for a Declaratory Judgment” says in part: “At an estimated total cost of at least $19.2 billion, North Anna 3 would be the most expensive power [reactor] ever built in the United States and could raise customers’ rates by 26 % or more according to the Virginia Attorney General. While Dominion claims that North Anna 3 is needed for compliance with the federal Clean Power Plan, it would be far costlier than the low-carbon alternative of combined renewables, demand-side management, and efficiency … Dominion has not complied with Virginia law by failing to seek SCC approval before making expenditures on project development and beginning preliminary construction of North Anna 3.” Continue reading
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