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New book: former chairman of Nuclear Regulatory Commission opposes nuclear energy

How Dangerous is Nuclear Power and How Bad is Its Regulation? (2019)

Former NRC chairman remains clearly opposed to nuclear energy, Las Vegas Sun, 9 Jan 19, “……… former Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko is going on the offensive to explain why nuclear energy is nowhere near a perfect solution to the climate crisis.

In a new book, Jaczko reiterates his longstanding criticism of the nuclear industry and his opposition to development of traditional nuclear power plants, which he says are unsafe despite technological improvements designed to make them safer.

Exhibit No. 1 in Jaczko’s argument is the Fukushima disaster. …, he contends that the catastrophe at Fukushima wiped out environmental gains that Japan made by burning less fossil fuels

…….Meanwhile, he says, the cost of generating electricity through natural gas and renewables is lower in most parts of the country than nuclear generation

……“So to me, the idea that somehow we’re going to preserve these reactors and that’s a climate solution is just wrong,” he said.

Then, of course, there’s the issue with nuclear waste ………

Jaczko’s bottom-line assessment is that despite decades of development, nuclear energy remains too hazardous and costly to be a viable source of power.

“There’s going to be an accident,” he said. “The only question is when and where.”

It’s a compelling argument, and anyone who may be warming to nuclear energy in the fight to reverse climate change should examine it. The book, “

,” is available now at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other outlets. https://lasvegassun.com/news/2019/jan/09/former-nrc-chairman-remains-clearly-opposed-to-nuc/

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January 10, 2019 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, resources - print, USA | Leave a comment

State of Washington opposes federal plan to reclassify Hanford nuclear waste

State opposes federal plan to reclassify Hanford nuclear waste, KATU 2, by NICHOLAS K. GERANIOS , Associated Press, January 9th 2019 

The state this week filed its objections to a Trump administration plan to reclassify millions of gallons of waste stored in underground tanks at Hanford Nuclear Reservation. The objections were accompanied by a letter from Gov. Jay Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson.

The U.S. Department of Energy is seeking to reclassify a large percentage of the waste as lower-level waste. That would allow treatment and disposal options that would not guarantee long-term protections.

“This dangerous idea will only serve to silence the voices of tribal leaders, Hanford workers, public safety officials, and surrounding communities in these important conversations,” said Inslee, a Democrat who is considering running for president in 2020. “This is unacceptable, and we will not stand by while this administration plans to abandon its responsibility to clean up their mess.” ……https://katu.com/news/local/state-opposes-federal-plan-to-reclassify-hanford-nuclear-waste

January 10, 2019 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA, wastes | Leave a comment

The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) will brief Scottish Parliament on Hunterston nuclear power plant

The National 8th Jan 2019 ,ANTI-nuclear campaigners will brief MSPs tomorrow on their concerns about the safety of two reactors at the Hunterston B nuclear power plant in North
Ayrshire. Reactors 3 and 4 have been offline since March and October
respectively after cracks were found during a routine inspection. Operators
EDF hope to gain approval for their re-opening in the spring.

The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) will give the Scottish Parliament briefing,
which will be chaired by Green MSP Ross Greer. He said: “Long-running
safety and job concerns from the community around Hunterston have increased
significantly.”
https://www.thenational.scot/news/17341200.msps-to-meet-anti-nuclear-campaigners/

January 10, 2019 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, UK | Leave a comment

Vermont-based New England Coalition on Nuclear Pollution will participate in NRC conference on wastes regulation

Local nuke group going to regulatory meeting https://www.recorder.com/Group-to-attend-NRC-meeting-on-casks-22611857 Brattleboro, Vt.-based New England Coalition on Nuclear Pollution will participate in this week’s Nuclear Regulatory Commission enforcement conference on design failures in radioactive-waste storage containers like those at Vermont Yankee and several other nuclear plants. Wednesday’s conference at the federal regulator’s Bethesda, Md. headquarters follows its complaint against Holtec International for its adopted design of steel and concrete spent-fuel casks without federal approval.

NRC officials say the company made changes after discovering a loose “bolt” last March at the San Onofre nuclear power plant in California. The small threaded posts connect to the bottom of shims in the canister of the cask to create space between multiple aluminum shims and the bottom of the canister to keep the basket stabilized in each of the casks.

The nuclear watchdog group’s technical adviser, Raymond Shadis, along with and board member Clay Turnbull, plan to monitor and offer comments on the canisters.

The coalition twice intervened before Vermont’s public utilities commission on using the Holtec steel canister-in-a-concrete-cask design at the Vernon plant, where 58 spent-fuel casks are now in place awaiting eventual transfer to a federal repository. It says its involvement helped result in more frequent radiation and temperature reporting, more conservative cask spacing, a protective line-of-site barrier wall and prohibition of using corrosive de-icing salts.

The coalition, which has repeatedly advocated for partially buried cask or earthen berm protection for the shuttered Vermont plant’s spent fuel, also commented on a previous Holtec design change, which it says resulted in a more in-depth NRC staff safety analysis.

NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said Holtec altered the cask design without a written evaluation, violating federal safety regulations.

January 10, 2019 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, safety, USA | Leave a comment

Arrests at the Pentagon, of 4 peaceful Catholic protesters against nuclear weapons

January 1, 2019 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, Religion and ethics, USA | Leave a comment

The Nuclear Resister monitors arrests for civil disobedience, and supporters women and men jailed for these actions

Since 1980, the Nuclear Resister has provided comprehensive reporting on arrests for anti-nuclear civil resistance in the United States, with an emphasis on providing support for the women and men jailed for these actions. In 1990, we expanded our work to include reporting on anti-war arrests in North America, plus overseas anti-nuclear and anti-war resistance with the same emphasis on prisoner support.

Through the publication of a newsletter every three months, and other education and outreach, the Nuclear Resister serves to network this nonviolent resistance movement while acting as a clearinghouse for information about contemporary nonviolent resistance to war and the nuclear threat. We believe that in any significant movement for social change, many committed individuals are imprisoned. Behind bars, they are physically isolated from their supporters and their own resistance activity is limited. Broader awareness of their actions and support for the imprisoned activist are essential to the movement for a peaceful, nuclear-free future.

The Nuclear Resister provides the names and jail addresses of currently imprisoned anti-nuclear and anti-war activists. People are encouraged to provide active support by writing letters to those behind bars and in other ways requested by the prisoners.

Since 1980, Jack and Felice Cohen-Joppa have been co-coordinators of the Nuclear Resister and co-editors of the newsletter. Hundreds of people have helped over the years by distributing newsletters, helping staff a Nuclear Resister booth at various events, doing artwork and writing articles for the newsletter, helping at mailing parties, providing information about actions and legal updates, sending photos, helping with the website and blog, and writing letters of support to imprisoned activists. http://www.nukeresister.org/about-us/

January 1, 2019 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA | Leave a comment

Connecticut Fund for the Environment criticise inclusion of nuclear power in State’s energy portfolio

Connecticut commits to nuclear power, ending debate over Millstone’s future, By STEPHEN SINGER,  HARTFORD COURANT DEC 28, 2018  “……….The state’s portfolio of energy used by utilities and sold to consumers and businesses will include power from Millstone and the Seabrook Station nuclear power plant in New Hampshire……….

December 30, 2018 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA | Leave a comment

Chinese city residents protest over plans for nuclear research plant

Local suspicions over Changsha plant heightened by failure to officially announce the plans until one day before public consultation process was due to end, SCMP,  Mandy Zuo, 28 Dec 18,  Dozens of residents in a city in central China have staged a protest over plans to build a nuclear research institute near their homes.

The protesters fear that radioactive materials used at the planned facility in Changsha, the capital of Hunan province, will pose a health risk.

The institute behind the project did not officially release their plans on Tuesday – after work had began on the site and one day before the public consultation period was supposed to end.

An environmental impact assessment into the project said No 230 Research Institute, a branch of the China National Nuclear Corporation, had acquired a space of over 20,000 square metres near a densely populated area to expand its offices and laboratories at the site, which will be dedicated to the geological exploration of uranium.

Although the facility is not intended to handle refined uranium, and scientists say that unprocessed material does not emit harmful levels of radiation, residents have expressed concerns about the possible health risks and have called for building work to be halted.

Their concerns were heightened by the failure to carry out an assessment of the radiological hazards and the decision to announce the plans a day before the consultation period was due to end.

Wu Xiaosha, one of the protesters, said people were also angry that the project is already being built without approval.

“The environmental impact assessment report lied about the population in the area – it said there are only 40,000 people in the area, but actually it’s nearly 250,000,” said Wu.

Yang Wenqiang, an official from the Changsha Urban Rural Planning Bureau, refused to comment on the matter, saying the government was holding an emergency meeting and would release a statement later……

Environmental concerns have fuelled a growing number of protests in China in recent years as public awareness of the possible health risks increases.

The Chinese Academy of Social Sciences reported that half of protests with more than 10,000 participants between 2001 and 2013 were sparked by concerns about pollution. https://www.scmp.com/news/china/society/article/2179905/chinese-city-residents-protest-over-plans-nuclear-research-plant

December 29, 2018 Posted by | China, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Communities call on France’s government to stop EDF from setting up nuclear facilities on agricultural land.

December 24, 2018 Posted by | France, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

New nuclear station next to Minsmere wildlife reserve? Sizewell action group to hold EDF to account

Theberton & Eastbridge Action Group on Sizewell 16th Nov 2018 Did you know that EDF wants to build two new reactors on the Suffolk coast, next to the internationally-famous RSPB Minsmere wildlife reserve and AONB?

It is to be a twin of EDF’s new Hinkley Point plant – so what is actually coming for Sizewell? Watch, share and sign up to receive our updates, and get ready to help us hold EDF to account in caring for this special place when they share their new proposals in January.

Grateful thanks to Lush Charity Pot for their support which made this video possible, and a huge shout out to UK Aerial Photography for all the Suffolk drone photography and editing the video.
https://www.facebook.com/teags.org/videos/194650268134653/

December 10, 2018 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, UK | Leave a comment

Turkish environmentalists go to the Supreme Court to stop construction of nuclear power station

November 19, 2018 Posted by | Legal, opposition to nuclear, Turkey | Leave a comment

Japanese people object to US government conducting a subcritical nuclear test last December.

People in Japan criticize US nuclear test  https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20181010_40/  People in Japan have criticized the US government for conducting a subcritical nuclear test last December.

A 39-year-old man expressed regret over the test during a visit with his baby to the Peace Memorial Park in the city of Hiroshima, which was hit by a US atomic bombing in 1945.

He said it’s regrettable that the United States conducted the test, which no one wanted, despite people’s hope for peace.

He said for the sake of children, he does not want nuclear weapons to exist in the future.

A 52-year-old woman in the city said the administration of President Donald Trump is not moving in the right direction, while provoking the world to divide.

She said she hopes the Japanese government will have its own views, without following the US administration.

Shigemitsu Tanaka, the head of the atomic bomb survivors’ organization in Nagasaki, also criticized the subcritical test.

He said it was a move against the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which was adopted last year, and the test is unforgivable.

He said he hopes the US will lead efforts to eliminate nuclear arms as the only country to have used nuclear weapons and will call on other nations to abolish them.

October 11, 2018 Posted by | Japan, opposition to nuclear, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

The most contaminated corner of Georgia? near to nuclear weapons complex and Vogtle nuclear power station

Environmental Leaders Kick Off Freedom to Breathe Tour in Georgia

The most contaminated corner of Georgia? September 30, 2018

Utilities just voted to continue Vogtle reactor construction; residents want cleanup, By Jeremy Deaton, Nexus Media

You could be forgiven for taking a Geiger counter on a visit to Shell Bluff, Georgia. The town lies just across the Savannah River from a nuclear weapons facility and just down the road from an aging nuclear power plant. The river is one of the most toxic waterways in the country. The weapons facility is one of the most contaminated places on the planet, and the power plant is about to double in size.

Locals are outraged.

“We believe that Plant Vogtle is going to exacerbate the existing contamination that’s already in the area and make things worse,” said Lindsay Harper, deputy director of Georgia WAND, a women-led advocacy group working to end nuclear proliferation and pollution. “We believe that more money should be put toward cleaning up the contamination instead of continuing to produce more.”

Organizers from Georgia WAND and other advocacy groups gathered in Atlanta recently to discuss Plant Vogtle and related environmental issues and to register voters. The town hall marked the first stop on a bus tour organized by environmental leaders from across the South.

The Freedom to Breathe Tour will highlight environmental hazards facing marginalized communities  —  starting with the expansion to Plant Vogtle, the only nuclear project under construction in the country.

In 2009, Southern Company began building two reactors, which are expected to go online in 2021 and 2022, respectively. The expansion has stoked fears of contamination in what is already a heavily polluted area, leading advocates to call for more testing.

“We need independent monitoring in the area that can help us to paint a larger, broader picture of what’s actually going on,” Harper said. “We need more information. We need more money for information.”

CNN Report – Plant Vogtle

Both the power plant and the weapons facility across the river produce a radioactive form of hydrogen called tritium that has been tentatively linked to Down syndrome in infants. Monitoring has found “elevated levels” of tritium in the groundwater near Plant Vogtle — too little to threaten public health, officials say, but enough to raise eyebrows.

Locals are also worried that pollution from the plant may be causing cancer. Epidemiologist Joseph Mangano found evidence of an uptick in infant mortality and cancer deaths in Burke County, seat of Plant Vogtle, after the facility went online in 1987. It is unclear if the power plant was responsible for the increase.Research has shown that children exposed to radiation are more susceptible to cancer  —  leukemia, in particular  —  but it is unclear if nuclear power plants produce enough radiation to threaten public health.

Studies in Germany and France found that the rate of childhood leukemia was significantly higher near power plants, and a study in the United States found that nuclear plant closures were followed by a decline in childhood cancer.

However, similar studies, including one undertaken by the National Cancer Institute, found no evidence of a link. To settle the matter, the federal government undertook a multi-year study on nuclear power and cancer in 2010, but it prematurely halted that effort in early 2017.

Adding to the uncertainty, the federal government stopped paying for monitoring of contamination near Plant Vogtle in 2003, believing the power plant posed little risk. To allay public concerns about radiation, the government is funding an outreach effort to reassure residents that the facilities are harmless, but locals remain unconvinced. Advocates want more rigorous testing and continued research into the risks of exposure to even low levels of radioactive waste……….

 Some, however, believe that nuclear is simply too costly and have called for more investment in batteries that can store power generated by solar and wind for when it’s needed.

This is the outcome that locals are hoping for. Many Burke County residents are employed by Plant Vogtle, but they would rather work in wind or solar. “People are having to choose between feeding their families and taking a job that may contaminate their body,” Harper said, referring both to the power plant and the weapons facility. “We want to put our money towards civilians and people, clean economies and clean, sustainable jobs.” https://beyondnuclearinternational.org/2018/09/30/the-most-contaminated-corner-of-georgia/

October 5, 2018 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA | Leave a comment

Many UNPAID Australians speak out against nuclear plans of the PAID few nuclear industry proponents

I am always struck by the fact that opponents of the nuclear industry are very many unpaid people. Just people who care. Some are highly educated academically. Many are not – but then they take the trouble to find out, and speak with the authority of both their local knowledge and wider information.

As for nuclear proponents they’re a small number of paid individuals, with another small number of hangers-on who expect financial benefits from the nuclear industry.

ABC Radio Adelaide Evenings with Peter Goer. Talkback 4 Oct 18. This show was inundated with hundreds of South Australians phoning in and texting about the proposed nuclear waste dump. ALL SAID NO!  Are you listening Department of Industry Innovation and Science and Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation  !!!??….  IT’S A BIG NO FROM SOUTH AUSTRALIA!!!

Transcript:Noel Wauchope . Not a perfect transcript, but a good account of what each caller said 

October 5, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

“Protect Texas from Radioactive Waste Tour” on its way to Midland

Anti-nuclear waste tour to come through Midland, Meetings push to block a proposal to transport used nuclear fuel by train and store it in West Texas, MRT, by Matt Zdun, Texas Tribune , September 26, 2018  Organizers of the “Protect Texas from Radioactive Waste Tour” plan to travel to five Texas cities over the next week in protest of a proposed plan to store used nuclear materials in West Texas.Several Texas organizations gathered in Houston on Tuesday to kick off their “Protect Texas from Radioactive Waste Tour,” the beginning of a renewed push to block a proposal to transport used nuclear fuel by train through Texas and store it in West Texas.

The tour’s organizers said they want to make people aware of the “high risk” implications of a proposal to build and operate a facility for 40,000 metric tons of irradiated fuel rods at an existing site in Andrews County.

If approved by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the project by Interim Storage Partners, a joint venture between Waste Control Specialists and Orano USA, would transport nuclear waste from around the country to the consolidated site in Texas and store it until a long-term storage site becomes available, according to the venture’s website.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission said in an August letter it would begin reviewing Interim Storage Partners’ license application and that its safety, security and environmental reviews of the proposal could conclude as early as August 2020.

Karen Hadden, the executive director of the Sustainable Energy and Economic Development Coalition, told The Texas Tribune that announcement triggered renewed opposition to the project and is one of the reasons for the tour.

The organizations involved — the Coalition of Community Organizations, Nuclear Information and Resource Services, Beyond Nuclear, the Sustainable Energy and Economic Development Coalition and Public Citizen — held a news conference by a railroad crossing in Houston, said Tom Smith, the special projects director of consumer rights advocacy group Public Citizen. Smith, who helped organize the tour, said in an interview with the Tribune that the news conference featured a 16-foot railroad container meant to replicate the transport cask that Interim Storage Partners would use to transport used nuclear fuel.

We’re by the railroad tracks because we’re emphasizing that Texas businesses, hospitals and schools by the railroads are at high risk,” Hadden said. “It’s a bad idea to bring [nuclear waste] from around the country into Texas.”

The organizations instead want the used nuclear material to be kept at reactor sites in sturdier containers until a permanent storage site becomes available.

Smith said the proposed project presents a number of risks. A railroad accident would be disastrous, he said, because it could expose the public to harmful radiation and could cost municipalities hundreds of millions of dollars to clean up.

He also said nuclear waste on railcars running through densely populated areas like Houston, Dallas and San Antonio is at “high risk of terrorist sabotage.”…….

Smith said that after the news conference, the organizations planned to ask the Houston City Council to adopt a resolution against the proposed transportation of the nuclear material. He added that commissioners in San Antonio and Midland have already adopted similar resolutions.

“We’re trying to raise awareness because a lot of people don’t know this is planned,” Hadden said. She also said she hopes the tour will encourage people to submit comments on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s website before the Oct. 19 deadline………https://www.mrt.com/news/local/article/Anti-nuclear-waste-tour-to-come-through-Midland-13260720.php

September 28, 2018 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA | Leave a comment