The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

IPCC report shows the winners in energy transition – wind and solar, and the losers – nuclear power and carbon capture.

 Guardian Down to Earth newsletter. Tucked away in the recent (and
devastating) landmark report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate
Change (IPCC) is a chart that provides the road map for an escape from

It assesses with extraordinary clarity the potential for
emissions cuts of more than 40 options. You can view it here. The
simplicity of the chart is deceptive. It was compiled by a team of the
world’s best scientists, based on 175 studies. Its power is amplified by
the fact that it was signed off by all of the world’s governments, from
the cleanest and greenest to the darkest petrostates.

So what does it show?
First, solar and wind power are by far the best option, with the potential
to cut a staggering 8bn tonnes from annual CO2 emissions by 2030. That is
equivalent to the combined emissions of the US and European Union today.
Even more startling is that most of that potential can be achieved at lower
cost than just continuing with today’s electricity systems.

Just as important as the winners in this analysis are the losers. Nuclear power and
carbon capture and storage (CCS) each have just 10% of the potential of
wind and solar, and at far higher cost. The same applies to bioenergy –
burning wood or crops for electricity. It’s no wonder that the UK’s
energy strategy, published last week, received significant criticism: it
goes heavy on nuclear and CCS, while ignoring onshore wind.

 IPCC (accessed) 7th April 2023


April 8, 2023 Posted by | ENERGY, World | Leave a comment

Calling nuclear fusion a potential ‘climate solution’ may undermine actual solutions

The latest fusion breakthrough is scientifically important, but the technology’s timeline just doesn’t match up with the urgency of climate change.

Grid Dave Levitan 28 Dec 22 Climate Reporter

When scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory announced a “breakthrough” in nuclear fusion research this month, many eyes quickly turned to climate change. Stories from the BBCCNN and other major outlets mentioned the potential for “limitless” clean energy and discussed fusion’s place as a global warming fix within their opening paragraphs. Even Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, in announcing the new result, touted its potential to provide “clean power to combat climate change.”

From a purely theoretical standpoint, this makes some sense. Fusion power, in an idealized, storybook form, turns the world’s energy system on its head, offering an emissions-free way to keep the lights on. And the latest advance sounds truly impressive: Using enormously powerful lasers, scientists at Livermore’s National Ignition Facility (NIF) managed to create a split-second fusion reaction — mimicking that which takes place on a massive scale inside the sun — that produced more energy than it consumed.

But the world doesn’t live in that storybook. On a practical, near-term level, nuclear fusion and climate change have almost nothing to do with each other. One remains in more-or-less scientific infancy, many years away from even a hint of usable form; the other gets more urgent by the day, requires immediate intervention and has some readily available tech being deployed as we speak.

“A lot of people are desperate for some sort of silver bullet climate solution that will help to bypass the hard work of actually getting political agreements and policymaking and sacrifice to eliminate fossil fuels,” said Edwin Lyman, a physicist and director of nuclear power safety for the Union of Concerned Scientists. “It would just be easier if there were this panacea out there that would transform everything, but of course that’s totally unrealistic.”

Celebrating scientific advances is important. But linking that science with an urgent global need that it cannot on relevant time scales address may offer false hope and potentially undermine the more banal climate progress — dramatic renewable energy expansion, efficiency improvements, vehicle electrification and so on — that is possible today.

Ignition achieved

The old joke about nuclear fusion is that it is always 20 — or 30 or 50 — years away. Taking hydrogen atoms and fusing them into helium, in the process releasing energy that theoretically can be used to power the electric grid, is so technically challenging that despite well over a half-century of advances, the joke still more or less holds true…………………. more

December 29, 2022 Posted by | spinbuster, technology, World | Leave a comment

‘Big guns’ keep the world on nuclear high alert – Helen Caldicott

With Russia and the U.S. currently on the warpath during the escalating conflict in Ukraine, the world is again at serious risk of nuclear disaster, writes Dr Helen Caldicott.

By Helen Caldicott | 17 July 2022,

JOHN F. KENNEDY’s Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara and I got to know each other during the last years of his life.

One day, as we were having lunch in the Metropolitan Club, he said to me:

“Helen, I was in the Oval Office during the Cuban Missile Crisis and we came so close – within three minutes – to nuclear war.”

Now, we are at another turning point in history — although most commentators seem not to understand the gravity of the situation. For the first time since then, the two nuclear superpowers armed as they are with thousands of nuclear weapons – many on hair-trigger alert – are facing each other during an escalating war in Ukraine.

As the genius, Albert Einstein said:

‘The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.’

So true.

Here we are with Vladimir Putin who decided to invade Ukraine killing innocent civilians and destroying property at random, while the U.S. military-industrial complex rejoices at the opportunity to make and sell as many weapons as it can, as its shares bound sky high.

The neo-cons that Joe Biden has appointed to his Cabinet are thrilled that for the first time since the Cold War ended, they can take on the “evil” Russia — although Russia seems no longer to be a communist country, but in fact a raging capitalist institution, with many of its state riches stolen by outrageous oligarchs living high on the hog.

During the Clinton Administration, Putin requested that Russia become a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), but it never eventuated as Russia was too big and too authoritarian.

NATO was created to defend western Europe from the perils of the “aggressive” Soviet Union and, as is well-known when the Cold War ended, U.S. Secretary of State James Baker promised Mikhail Gorbachev that NATO would not move one inch to the East.

This posture however was antithetical to aerospace corporation Lockheed Martin whose president, Norman Augustine took it upon himself to visit these newly liberated countries convincing them to become democracies – that is, part of NATO – which required them to arm themselves to the tune of millions of dollars, enormously benefiting the U.S. military-industrial complex.

America then introduced military and missile equipment in all these NATO countries, targeting, of course, Russia, while NATO expanded from 12 to 30 countries.

Putin originally had two requests:

  • that the missiles targeting Russia be removed; and
  • that Ukraine not be admitted to the NATO block.

He was refused.

The present precarious situation is heightened by the testosterone imperative that has dominated and guided wars throughout history, superimposed by the tenuous control of nuclear arsenals, the launching of which has too often been triggered by false alarms, a rising moon, a flock of geese triggering radar alerts, human fallibility, war games, tapes plugged into the Pentagon system and many more.

Superimposed upon this fragile system is the age-old necessity to “win”.

I wake up each morning, look out the window to see the roses and wonder how much longer they will exist — more frightened now than I have ever been even during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

July 16, 2022 Posted by | 2 WORLD, PERSONAL STORIES, World | Leave a comment

Elon Musk and Bill Gates: beware of gurus toting solutions to climate change. March 21, Elon Musk has grand plans to save the world. Bill Gates has just published his book How To Avoid a Climate Disaster. They both envisage tax-payer funding for their solutions. But beware of gurus toting the solution to the planet’s crisis.

If you don’t think that our home planet is in an ecocidal crisis, then you’ve been blissfully unaware of global heating, over-population, biodiversity loss, waste crises, plastic pollution, overconsumption of energy, water shortages, deforestation, nuclear danger, space junk danger, perpetual nuclear war risk…….

Visionaries like Bill Gates and Elon Musk have brought extraordinary, and beneficial advances to our human society. On the way, they have become billionaires. And good luck to them. But their wealth and fame has made them all too ready to be seen as world leaders, and to see themselves as having the solutions to world problems. This can be problematic, as in effect, some of their solutions exacerbate the problems.

The future envisioned by both Bill Gates and Elon Musk has one huge blind spot. They both foresee ever-expanding energy use, and they plan for that – problems can be fixed with technology.

On a finite planet, endless energy use just cannot work. But the concept of enough is just not in their plans. If the human species does not take up the concept of enough, we could just become an extinct species. Technology could be used to reduce energy use, but that idea fades away as Gates, Musk, and other technocratic leaders see progress as being to have ever more exciting and energy-guzzling gimmicks and activities.

The digital revolution. It should be a benefit, enhancing our lives, and in many ways, it IS. But an energy price is paid in our unbridled use of digital technology. Every email, emoji, Facebook post, tweet, blogpost, Youtube, uses electricity. It’s not as if these actions just disappear ”into the cloud”. What a dishonest term that is! There is no such cloud. What there actually IS – is a host of vast areas of dirty great data” farms”. There’s another dishonest term. They’re not farms. They are soulless collections of great metal servers, using ever growing amounts of electricity, and of water, to keep them cool.

Then there’s the price at the end. It’s very hard to find out the details and the extent of toxic materials from digital technology, that are dumped in poor countries.
And, to be fair, companies like Apple, have made some efforts to reduce their ewaste.

However, planned obsolescence is rampant in the high tech world, resulting in the utter tragedy of ewaste pollution, – from discarded smartphones, laptops, computers, printers, TVs, fidbits, smart fridges, robots etc, the tragedy of the thousands of children working as waste-pickers in India and Africa, in slum conditions. E-waste includes many toxic materials such as lead, arsenic, cadmium, and mercury, that release dioxins. . ”With no health or environmental protections in the slum, the toxins contaminate the air, water, and the food consumed in the slum…….. The area is constantly covered in thick, toxic smoke from the burning of electrical cables that goes on all day and night,” – High-tech hell: new documentary brings Africa’s e-waste slum to life

Both Gates and Musk are enthusiasts for renewable energy, and in the climate crisis, they are to be applauded for their work in this direction. Yet, as with all kinds of digital technology, renewables should not be unlimited, and do have their downsides, both in the production (pollution from rare earths mining/processing), and in the final disposal, with toxic wastes, and components that are difficult to recycle. . The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) estimates that solar panels produced 250,000 metric tonnes of waste in 2018 alone.

Bill Gates and Elon Musk do show their awareness of the planet’s grave environmental problems, but we don’t hear from them about energy conservation, or about moving away from the consumer society. Both talk quite enthusiastically about the great increase in energy use that we can expect. They complacently predict endless energy use, just as the nuclear lobby did in its glossy advertising film ”Pandora’s Promise”

Elon Musk now plans to put 24,000 satellites into space, and is well known for his dream of colonising Mars, and This idea has, of course, been taken up by many others, and there’s a sort of general public delight in space travel and interstellar rocketry. People seem oblivious to the fact that this will require huge amounts of energy, and that the space scientists already are turning away from clean solar power, to the far more dangerous source of nuclear fission. They’re also oblivious of the state of affairs in near space, where the trillions of bits of space debris pose dangers, floating about just like the plastic pollution in the oceans. Meanwhile the military planners in USA, Russia, China are already planning for nuclear weapons and war in space.

No surprise then that Elon Musk sees nuclear power as necessary – not just for his predicted need for much more electricity on Earth, but for this obsession with satellites and rockets.

Less well understood than his push for electric cars and Tesla technologies, is Elon Musk’s investment in the cryptocurrency, Bitcoin. Running Bitcoin demands enormous amounts of electricity, as Timothy Rooks explained recently.

Bill Gates, while motivated to help fight climate change, has also long been trying to make a success of his nuclear technology company Terra Power. The climate emergency presents him with the perfect opportunity to promote this, and especially, to get tax–payer funding to do it, as he suggests in his new book.

Wake up people! These two gurus have done some good stuff. But don’t let them manipulate us into dangerous territory – with nuclear technology, so connected with weaponry, and with its dangers, and the unsolved problem of radioactive trash. Sure, technology has got to be part of solving the planet’s crises. But we need much more imaginative leadership to steer our species away from infinite consumption and infinite energy use.

March 4, 2021 Posted by | climate change, ENERGY, spinbuster, World | Leave a comment

Nearly 90% of young people want real action on climate change

Young people send strong climate message, Pro Bono  Maggie Coggan | 24 August  20,

“We see the world in a different light. Politicians need to start listening to us and taking action,” a youth leader says.

Nearly 90 per cent of young people say they feel unprepared for future climate disasters and want politicians to give them a bigger voice on climate change, a new report finds.

Conducted in the wake of the catastrophic summer bushfire season, the new Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience and World Vision Australia research found that despite hazards such as bushfires, floods, drought and tropical cyclones posing a greater threat, young people said they were more likely to learn about earthquakes at school.

This left 88 per cent of survey respondents feeling unprepared and unable to protect themselves and their communities, even though nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) had experienced at least three events such as bushfires, heatwaves and drought in the past three years.

“We anticipate that we will experience personal impacts from natural hazards in the future, whether we are living in capital cities, regional centres, or rural areas,” respondents said.

“The 2020 bushfires demonstrated that you need not live in the bush to be affected by a bushfire. We are experiencing these persistent worries while having to contend with life, school, growing up and everything else that comes with being a young person in Australia.”

It is the most comprehensive consultation of children and young people on climate change, disasters, and disaster-resilience in the country, with 1,500 people participating in the online survey, supported by UNICEF Australia, Plan International, Save the Children, Oaktree and Australian Red Cross.

Young people concerned, but not heard …………  A full copy of the report can be found here.

August 25, 2020 Posted by | climate change, World | Leave a comment

2020 Is Proving Another Disastrous Year For Our Earth’s Climate

August 24, 2020 Posted by | climate change, World | Leave a comment

To tackle the climate crisis, the world cannot return to normal after Covid-19.

New Statesman 16th April 2020,  To tackle the climate crisis, the world cannot return to normal after
Covid-19. This moment must be used to build a new economic consensus founded on justice, care and sustainability. The same fractures exposed by this pandemic are the fault lines along which the battle for climate justice is fought.

Many of the people most vulnerable in the current crisis  will be worst affected by environmental breakdown, while those who are enriched by this pandemic are likely to benefit in the future. Reports this  week that UK hedge funds are cashing in on Covid-19 ring eerily similar to now regular stories of investors betting on climate collapse, water
scarcity and crop failure, and investing in the infrastructures and technologies of disaster.

And just as many nations and communities have been abandoned in our response to this pandemic, it is all too easy to imagine a future in which communities from Jakarta to east Yorkshire are left to fend for themselves amid accelerating climate breakdown. Indeed, to imagine it one has only to look at the present.

Post-crisis stimulus should be directed towards green infrastructure and innately low carbon forms of work like health and social care, proven so vital and so undervalued by this crisis. Debts must be written off to allow those countries most vulnerable to climate crisis to build resilience against it. And having exposed austerity as an ideological choice, rather than a necessity, we must ensure these mistakes are never repeated, and social safety nets are both valued and strengthened.

Rapid Transition Alliance 16th April 2020, Andrew Simms: In the debate over the global response to Covid19 a battle of hashtags has broken out between those urging a quick return to ‘normal’, and those saying that ‘normal’ had many problems and the crisis has revealed both the need and an opportunity for changing direction, and a shift of economic purpose.

April 20, 2020 Posted by | climate change, World | Leave a comment

Climate change taking its toll on mental health

Feeling Anxious About Climate Change? Therapists Say You’re Not Alone

There’s no official clinical diagnosis, but the psychiatric and psychological communities have names for the phenomenon of worrying about the Earth’s fate: “climate distress,” “climate grief,” “climate anxiety” or “eco-anxiety”, People, By Victoria Knight , July 15, 2019 

Therapist Andrew Bryant says the landmark United Nations climate reportlast October brought a new mental health concern to his patients.

“I remember being in sessions with folks the next day. They had never mentioned climate change before, and they were like, ‘I keep hearing about this report,’” Bryant said. “Some of them expressed anxious feelings, and we kept talking about it over our next sessions.”

The study, conducted by the world’s leading climate scientists, said that if greenhouse gas emissions continue at the current rate, by 2040 the Earth will warm by 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit (1.5 degrees Celsius). Predictions say that increase in temperature will cause extreme weather events, rising sea levels, species extinction and reduced capacity to produce food.

Bryant works at North Seattle Therapy & Counseling in Washington state. Recently, he said, he has been seeing patients with anxiety or depression related to climate change and the Earth’s future.

Often these patients want to do something to reduce global warming but are overwhelmed and depressed by the scope of the problem and difficulty in finding solutions. And they’re anxious about how the Earth will change over the rest of their or their children’s lifetimes.

Although it is not an official clinical diagnosis, the psychiatric and psychological communities have names for the phenomenon: “climate distress,” “climate grief,” “climate anxiety” or “eco-anxiety.”

The concept also is gradually making its way into the public consciousness.

In a June 23 episode of the HBO series Big Little Lies, one of the main character’s young daughters has a panic attack after hearing about climate change in school. And other recently released TV shows and movies have addressed the idea.

An April survey by Yale and George Mason universities found that 62% of Americans were at least “somewhat worried” about climate change. Of those, 23% were “very worried.”

Both younger and older generations express worry, although younger Americans generally seem more concerned: A 2019 Gallup poll reported that 54% of those ages 18 to 34, 38% of those 35 to 54 and 44% of those 55 or older worry a “great deal” about global warming.

There is no epidemiological data yet to show how common distress or anxiety related to climate change is. But, people say these feelings are real and affect their life decisions.

Los Angeles residents Mary Dacuma, 33, and her husband decided not to have children because they worry about how difficult the world might be for the next generation. ……..

July 15, 2019 Posted by | climate change, psychology - mental health, World | Leave a comment

“Energy for Humanity”, “Nuclear Pride” – the greenwashing of Fukushima, Chernobyl, and the global nuclear industry

Energy for Humanity: Nuclear Power – Propaganda and Greenwash,   Energy for Humanity, Nuclear Pride, new NPPs & Propaganda  
A few years after the devastating nuclear accidents of Fukushima and Tschernobyl, which both resulted in extremely high numbers of casualties, the international nuclear lobby decided to shun the limelight for a little while. But apparently it takes more than just two global disasters to bring them down for good. The global nuclear society, the old and powerful networks between enterprises, lobbyists and nuclear parties are still very much in tact. Even though renewable energies are on the rise in the western world, and many outdated nuclear power plants are going offline, dictatorships and economically weak countries continue to establish new nuclear power plants. That is one of the reasons why new NPP’s are promoted so massively in 2018. The nuclear power plant operators make a big effort to try and win over the wary public after Fukushima and Tschernobyl. Consequently cunning campaigns are run and used to cover up facts, to spread half-truths and to boast.

Energy for Humanity und Nuclear Pride Coalition and their new enforcement strategies
The only thing that has changed over the years are the propaganda and enforcement strategies that are being utilized. In former times, conflicts revolving around nuclear energy, protection of the environment and climate were argued out between environmentalists and opposing enterprises. Unfortunately the environmentalist movement today still thinks and acts upon outdated ways of thinking and conflict patterns. Nowadays those conflicts are being ‘outsourced’. It is alarming how all over Germany organisations of the nuclear and coal corporate groups, foundations and faked citizen initiatives like ‘Nuclear pride’ and “Mothers for Nuclear” are supporting the usage of nuclear power plants and coal power stations while fighting environmentally friendly renewable energies.

The usage of nuclear energy in old swiss NPP’s is a danger to human life and environment. Uranium mining, uranium enrichment and the production of fuel elements have devastating effects on the environment, cause illnesses and even lead to death. Furthermore Nuclear Power Plants emit cancerous nuclear radiation while in standart operation. Disasters like a nuclear accident or terror attack are possible at any time and therefore the life and health of hundreds of thousands of people is under constant threat. Huge areas of landmass would be inhabitable for several human generations. Powerful Swiss nuclear groups have a big undemocratic influence on politics and their attempts at greenwashing and propaganda are very effective. Groups like “Falken am Kühlturm des AKW Leibstadt” and “Energy for Humanity” are being used to distract from the danger a NPP poses. Fact is that the nuclear waste we produce and bury today will continue to emit dangerous levels of radiation for millions of years and could potentially threaten the lives of future generations.

June 1, 2019 Posted by | spinbuster, World | 2 Comments

Increasingly, cities are headed for 100% renewable energy

Guardian 27th Feb 2018  The number of cities reporting they are predominantly powered by clean energy has more than doubled since 2015, as momentum builds for cities around the world to switch from fossil fuels to renewable sources.

Data published on Tuesday by the not-for-profit environmental impact researcher CDP found that 101 of the more than 570 cities on its books sourced atleast 70% of their electricity from renewable sources in 2017, compared to
42 in 2015. Nicolette Bartlett, CDP’s director of climate change,
attributed the increase to both more cities reporting to CDP as well as a
global shift towards renewable energy. The data was a “comprehensive
picture of what cities are doing with regards to renewable energy,” she
told Guardian Cities. In Britain, 14 more cities and towns had signed up to
the UK100 local government network’s target of 100% clean energy by 2050,
bringing the total to 84.

Among the recent local authority recruits were Liverpool City Region, Barking and Dagenham, Bristol, Bury, Peterborough, Redcar and Cleveland.

But the CDP data showed 43 cities worldwide were already entirely powered by clean energy, with the vast majority (30) in Latin America, where more cities reported to CDP and hydropower is more widespread. The Icelandic capital Reyjkavik, sourcing all electricity from hydropower and geothermal, was among them. It is now working to make all
cars and public transit fossil-free by 2040.

February 27, 2018 Posted by | renewable, World | Leave a comment

Dwight D Eisenhower was the granddaddy of hard-core nuclearism in the world tday

Ken, Eisenhower was the grandaddy of hard-core nuclearism in the world today. He was the grandaddy of the military-industrial complex, in spite of the propaganda, put out.

The US started with 1000 nuclear waepons, when he came in. Ended with 22,000, when he came out. He did the most open air, nuclear-bomb testing.

He set the fateful course for using inefficient, deadly nuclear reactors to generate energy. He had a cabinet of millionaires. He set the human race on the path of it’s own destruction. A true evil monky general, as Dr Caldicott says, if there ever was one.–Eisenhower-Builds-an-Arsenal-of-Nuclear-Weapons-and-a-Cabinet-of-Millionair

February 12, 2018 Posted by | history, weapons and war, World | Leave a comment

Facebook now willing to be censored by U.S. government

FACEBOOK NOW SEEMS to be explicitly admitting that it also intends to follow the censorship orders of the U.S. government.

the Trump administration — has the unilateral and unchecked power to force the removal of anyone it wants from Facebook and Instagram by simply including them on a sanctions list.

Facebook Says It Is Deleting Accounts at the Direction of the U.S. and Israeli GovernmentsThe Intercept, Glenn Greenwald, December 31 2017IN SEPTEMBER OF last year, we noted that Facebook representatives were meeting with the Israeli government to determine which Facebook accounts of Palestinians should be deleted on the ground that they constituted “incitement.” The meetings — called for and presided over by one of the most extremist and authoritarian Israeli officials, pro-settlement Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked — came after Israel threatened Facebook that its failure to voluntarily comply with Israeli deletion orders would result in the enactment of laws requiring Facebook to do so, upon pain of being severely fined or even blocked in the country.

The predictable results of those meetings are now clear and well-documented. Ever since, Facebook has been on a censorship rampage against Palestinian activists who protest the decades-long, illegal Israeli occupation, all directed and determined by Israeli officials. Indeed, Israeli officials have been publicly boasting about how obedient Facebook is when it comes to Israeli censorship orders:

Shortly after news broke earlier this month of the agreement between the Israeli government and Facebook, Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked said Tel Aviv had submitted 158 requests to the social media giant over the previous four months asking it to remove content it deemed “incitement.” She said Facebook had granted 95 percent of the requests.

She’s right. The submission to Israeli dictates is hard to overstate: As the New York Times put it in December of last year, “Israeli security agencies monitor Facebook and send the company posts they consider incitement. Facebook has responded by removing most of them.”

What makes this censorship particularly consequential is that “96 percent of Palestinians said their primary use of Facebook was for following news.” That means that Israeli officials have virtually unfettered control over a key communications forum of Palestinians.

In the weeks following those Facebook-Israel meetings, reported The Independent, “the activist collective Palestinian Information Center reported that at least 10 of their administrators’ accounts for their Arabic and English Facebook pages — followed by more than 2 million people — have been suspended, seven of them permanently, which they say is a result of new measures put in place in the wake of Facebook’s meeting with Israel.” Last March, Facebook briefly shut down the Facebook page of the political party, Fatah, followed by millions, “because of an old photo posted of former leader Yasser Arafat holding a rifle.”

2016 report from the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms detailed how extensive the Facebook censorship was:……….

Though some of the most inflammatory and explicit calls for murder are sometimes removed, Facebook continues to allow the most extremist calls for incitement against Palestinians to flourish. Indeed, Israel’s leader, Benjamin Netanyahu, has often used social media to post what is clearly incitement to violence against Palestinians generally…….

FACEBOOK NOW SEEMS to be explicitly admitting that it also intends to follow the censorship orders of the U.S. government. Earlier this week, the company deleted the Facebook and Instagram accounts of Ramzan Kadyrov, the repressive, brutal, and authoritarian leader of the Chechen Republic, who had a combined 4 million followers on those accounts. To put it mildly, Kadyrov — who is given free rein to rule the province in exchange for ultimate loyalty to Moscow — is the opposite of a sympathetic figure: He has been credibly accused of a wide range of horrific human rights violations, from the imprisonment and torture of LGBTs to the kidnapping and killing of dissidents.

But none of that dilutes how disturbing and dangerous Facebook’s rationale for its deletion of his accounts is…….

What this means is obvious: that the U.S. government — meaning, at the moment, the Trump administration — has the unilateral and unchecked power to force the removal of anyone it wants from Facebook and Instagram by simply including them on a sanctions list. Does anyone think this is a good outcome? Does anyone trust the Trump administration — or any other government — to compel social media platforms to delete and block anyone it wants to be silenced? ……..

Does Facebook’s policy of blocking people from its platform who are sanctioned apply to all governments? Obviously not. It goes without saying that if, say, Iran decided to impose sanctions on Chuck Schumer for his support of Trump’s policy of recognizing Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, Facebook would never delete the accounts of the Democratic Party Senate minority leader — just as Facebook would never delete the accounts of Israeli officials who incite violence against Palestinians or who are sanctioned by Palestinian officials. Just last month, Russia announced retaliatory sanctions against various Canadian officials and executives, but needless to say, Facebook took no action to censor them or block their accounts.

Similarly, would Facebook ever dare censor American politicians or journalists who use social media to call for violence against America’s enemies? To ask the question is to answer it.

January 1, 2018 Posted by | civil liberties, media, World | Leave a comment

The Green Revolution Is ‘Unstoppable’ – Al Gore, with An Inconvenient Sequel

Al Gore: The Green Revolution Is ‘Unstoppable’, Despite a tough political climate, the environmental activist is still optimistic. National Geographic Magazine By With his 2006 documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, former U.S. vice president Al Gore drew public attention to the threat of climate change. This July, An Inconvenient Sequel opens in theaters. Gore, 69, says the stakes are higher now but the solutions are clearer.

What do you think the public misunderstands about climate change?

I think the overwhelming majority of the public understands very well that climate change is an extremely important challenge, that human beings are responsible for it, and that we need to act quickly and decisively to solve it. The most persuasive arguments have come from Mother Nature. Climate-related extreme weather events are now so numerous and severe that it’s hard to dismiss what’s happening. But even those who don’t want to use the words “global warming” or “climate crisis” are finding other ways to say, “Yes, we’ve got to move on solar, wind, batteries, electric cars, and so on.” We have so much at risk…….

What is your goal with the new film, An Inconvenient Sequel?

My main goal is to add to the momentum. One hundred percent of the profits I would otherwise get from the movie, and book we’re doing, will go into training more climate activists. That was true with the first movie as well…….

What scares you most about the future?

While we are winning, we are not yet winning fast enough. The continued accumulation of manmade global warming pollution in the atmosphere adds to the damage that we will pass on to the future. Some of the changes are not recoverable. We can’t just turn a switch and reverse the melting of big ice sheets.

What gives you hope for the future?

There are so many people working around the world on this that I am extremely optimistic. It would certainly be helpful to have policies and laws that speed up our response. But market forces are working in our favor. Solar, wind, and other technologies are getting cheaper and better. More cities and companies are pledging to go 100 percent renewable. I believe the sustainability revolution is unstoppable.

June 26, 2017 Posted by | climate change, Resources -audiovicual, World | Leave a comment

Increasing risk of sabotage by extremists working in the nuclear industry

safety-symbol-SmWorking in Nuclear while Muslim , Nuclear Free by 2045?, 24 Nov 15  Since the inception of nuclear energy, anti-nuclear critics have been warning about the vulnerability of nuclear power plants to deliberate sabotage. Recent events indicate that we are moving closer to a period of global instability in which state governments cannot protect against non-state actors who will deliberately or unintentionally create a nuclear disaster.

This week a group of Tatar radicals attacked electricity transmission lines in Ukraine which deliver power to Crimea. The government of Ukraine has a well-known dispute with Russia over its claim to Crimea, but it likely had no intention of committing such a war crime that would endanger the lives of millions of civilians and create further tensions with Russia. The narrow-minded attackers were apparently unaware of the effect their assault would have on Ukrainian nuclear power plants, but nonetheless two of them were cut off from the electrical grid and had to use backup power. A report in Russia Today quoted a Ukrainian energy company official about the seriousness of the situation:
The apparent act of sabotage in Ukraine’s Kherson region forced an emergency power unloading at several Ukrainian nuclear power plants, which can be extremely dangerous, according to the first deputy director of Ukraine’s energy company Ukrenergo, Yuriy Katich. [1]
It was backup power that was famously lost at Fukushima-Daiichi, leading to the meltdown of three reactor cores and a melting of spent fuel in the Reactor 4 building. Thus these plants in Ukraine are just one step away from meltdown, but it is likely in this case that backup power can be maintained until the transmission towers are repaired. Yet the incident highlights how things will go worse in the future when a similar event occurs in a failing state where fuel for backup generators can’t be supplied on time and the main transmission lines can’t be repaired.
Social instability is also a factor now in France. The attacks in Paris on November 13, 2015 highlighted the inability of security agencies to identify and break up groups of French citizens who are intent on committing acts of mass violence. If they couldn’t be found in the suburbs of Paris, how can we be sure that they will be found among people who work at nuclear power plants? This issue came to light in a report published in Le Journal du Dimanche on November 22, 2015 (translated below). It was reported that French security agencies have been using religious affiliation as a reason to deny access to nuclear power plants.
Everyone would like to keep NPPs safe from malicious attack, but there are serious problems involved in trying to eliminate all risks. The security agencies are using affiliations as the basis of exclusion, without any official charge of criminal intent or conspiracy. Thus if an enterprise is so dangerous that large segments of society have to be denied the right to work in it, in the vain hope that doing so will prevent sabotage, it is worth asking whether this enterprise should exist at all. Is there a safer way to boil water or to produce electricity without boiling water?

November 25, 2015 Posted by | France, safety, World | Leave a comment

Climate Risks from Nuclear Power. Radioactive Krypton 85: Atmospheric-Electrical and Air-Chemical Effects of Ionizing Radiation in the Atmosphere

Title: Climate risks by radioactive krypton-85 from nuclear fission Atmospheric-electrical and air-chemical effects of ionizing radiation in the atmosphere
Klimarisiken durch radioaktives Krypton-85 aus der Kernspaltung Luftelektrische und luftchemische Wirkungen ionisierender Strahlung in der Atmosphaere
Authors : Kollert, R. (Kollert und Donderer, Bremen (Germany)); Gewaltfreie Aktion Kaiseraugst, Liestal (Switzerland);
Corporate author: Bund fuer Umwelt und Naturschutz Deutschland e.V. (BUND), Freiburg im Breisgau (Germany). Landesverband Baden-Wuerttemberg ; Bund Naturschutz in Bayern e.V., Muenchen (Germany)
Publication year: 1994
Language: German ;
The study shows that krypton-85 from nuclear fission enhances air ionization and, thus, interferes with the atmospheric-electrical system and the water balance of the earth atmosphere. This is reason for concern: There are unforeseeable effects for weather and climate if the krypton-85 content of the earth atmosphere continues to rise. There may be a krypton-specific greenhouse effect and a collapse of the natural atmospheric-electrical field. In addition, human well-being may be expected to be impaired as a result of the diminished atmospheric-electrical field. There is also the risk of radiochemical actions and effects caused-by krypton-85-containing plumes in other air-borne pollutants like the latters’ transformation to aggressive oxidants. This implies radiation smog and more acid rain in the countries exposed. This study summarizes findings gained in these issues by various sciences, analyses them and elaborates hypotheses on the actions and effects of krypton-85 on the air, the atmosphere and the climate. (orig./HP);
Abstract : Die Studie zeigt, dass Krypton-85 aus der Kernspaltung die Luftionisation erhoeht und damit in das luftelektrische System sowie in den Wasserhaushalt der Erdatmosphaere eingreift. Dies gibt Anlass zu Sorge: Nicht absehbare Folgen fuer Wetter und Klima, falls der Krypton-85-Gehalt der Erdatmosphaere weiter stark ansteigt. Ein Krypton-spezifischer Treibhauseffekt ist moeglich sowie ein Zusammenbruch des natuerlichen luftelektrischen Feldes. Zu erwarten ist ueberdies eine Beeintraechtigung menschlichen Wohlbefindens infolge des verringerten luftelektrischen Feldes. Hinzu kommt das Risiko strahlenchemischer Wirkungen der Krypton-85-haltigen Abgasschwaden auf andere Luftschadstoffe, insbesondere deren Umwandlung in aggressive Oxidantien. Das bedeutet Strahlen-Smog und mehr sauren Regen ueber den betroffenen Laendern. Die Studie fuehrt zu diesen Problemkreisen Erkenntnisse aus verschiedenen Sachgebieten zusammen, analysiert sie und begruendet Hypothesen zur Wirkung von Krypton-85 auf die Luft, die Atmosphaere und das Klima. (orig./HP) ;
Pagination/Size: 66 p.;
SIGLE classification: 08N – Meteorology, climatology ; 03J – Nuclear waste reprocessing;
Keyword(s) :
Document type :
I – Miscellaneous ;
Series / Report no. :
BUND Information : Luftelektrische und luftchemische Wirkungen ionisierender Strahlung in der Atmosphaere. v. 51 (ISSN )
Other identifier :
DE_ 1995:4257; DE;
Provenance: SIGLE;
Get a copy:
FIZ – Fachinformationszzentrum Karlsruhe TIB – Technische Informationsbibliothek
Availability :
Available from TIB Hannover
Country :
Germany ;
To cite or link to this reference:

Note: Krypton is emitted during nuclear reactor operations, nuclear accidents, and nuclear fuel reprocessing (it’s present in the spent fuel-nuclear waste): “Radionuclide Release Limits—In the context of this ANPR, the specific radionuclide release limits established under 40 CFR 190.10(b). These are the legally permissible maximum amounts of krypton-85, iodine-129, as well as plutonium-239 and other alpha emitters that can enter the environment from the processes of nuclear power operations in any given year, on an energy production basis… There have been active reprocessing facilities in 15 countries, including the U.S., although some of these facilities were more research-oriented as opposed to commercial reprocessing facilities. Of the current operating facilities, the most widely known are the facilities at Sellafield (United Kingdom) and La Hague (France), which constitute the first and second leading producers globally for krypton-85. Both facilities discharge krypton-85 directly to the environment.

Potential radioactive pollutants resulting from expanded energy programs” By Hong Lee, et. al. Environmental Monitoring and Support Laboratory (Las Vegas, Nev.). Monitoring Systems Research and Development Division, EPA-600/7-77-082 August 1977 See text p. 83 re nuclear reactor emissions:

Source: Mining Awareness

September 18, 2015 Posted by | World | , , | Leave a comment