Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Greenpeace activists break into French nuclear plant

By Michael Mainville (AFP) – 7 hours ago  -
PARIS — Activists from environmental group Greenpeace managed to sneak into a nuclear power plant near Paris on Monday in a move they said highlighted the dangers posed by France's reliance on atomic energy.
Police confirmed the intrusion and said activists had tried to break into two other nuclear sites in the south of France.
French energy giant EDF, which runs the nuclear plants that France relies on for 75 percent of its energy, sought to play down the incident, saying the activists at the plant near Paris had been detected but a decision made not to immediately intercept them.
EDF said activists had unfurled banners at two other sites but did not specify whether they had managed to enter the nuclear plants.
In a statement, Greenpeace said some members had entered the nuclear site at Nogent-sur-Seine, 95 kilometres (60 miles) southeast of Paris, to "spread the message that there is no such thing as safe nuclear power."
"A group of militants managed to climb on to the dome of one of the reactors, where they unfurled a banner saying 'Safe Nuclear Power Doesn't Exist'," said Greenpeace spokesman Axel Renaudin.
"The aim is to show the vulnerability of French nuclear installations, and how easy it is to get to the heart of a reactor," said Sophia Majnoni, a Greenpeace nuclear expert.
EDF insisted it had been aware of the intrusion from the start.
The activists "were immediately detected by the security system and were permanently followed on the site, without a decision being made to make use of force," the company said in a statement.
It said seven to nine people had been "calmly apprehended" by the French gendarmerie, a branch of the armed forces that protects nuclear sites.
Ladders and banners were also found near a nuclear power station in Blaye in southwestern France and at a nuclear research centre in Cadarache in the southeast, the gendarmerie told AFP.
EDF said banners had also been deployed at nuclear power plants in Chinon in central France and at Blayais in southwestern France, but "immediately removed." The company did not say whether activists had managed to enter those sites.
Henri Guaino, an advisor to President Nicolas Sarkozy, said the activists' move was "irresponsible" but raised questions about security at nuclear plants.
"It was irresponsible on their part," he told BFMTV. "But this does make one think about the security of access to nuclear power plants. Conclusions must be drawn from this."
The incident comes as some in France have begun to question the country's long-held support for nuclear energy.
France, the world's most nuclear-dependent country, operates 58 reactors and has been a leading international proponent of atomic energy.
But the country's reliance on nuclear energy has been increasingly called into question since the Fukushima disaster in Japan, which prompted Germany to announce plans to shut all of its reactors by the end of 2022.
Ahead of a presidential election next year, Socialist candidate Francois Hollande has agreed a deal with the country's Greens to push to reduce France's reliance on nuclear energy to 50 percent by shutting down 24 nuclear reactors by 2025.
EDF and Greenpeace have a long history of confrontation, and last month a French court fined the company 1.5 million euros ($2 million) after it hired a private security firm to hack the computer of the group's former head of campaigns in France.
Greenpeace's action came as UN climate talks entered their second week in South Africa.
Near the Durban conference site six Greenpeace campaigners were arrested as they tried to hang a banner reading "Listen to the People, not the Polluters" at a hotel where a "Global Business Day," hosted by business organisations, was taking place.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

URGENT! Stop the Burning of Fukushima Daiichi's Radioactive Rubble

We MUST Protect Children and Future Generations Worldwide!

FACT 1 : Radioactive debris is ready to be shipped all over Japan.

FACT 2 :1,000 tons of contaminated rubble will be brought to Tokyo by train at the end of October, 2011. It will be BURNED and DUMPED into TOKYO BAY.

We are writing this letter in support of a network of thousands of mothers across Japan who fear the devastation resulting from the tsunami on March 11th and the grossly negligent government policies since its occurrence. We believe the government's negligence will have more adverse consequences than the already catastrophic impact of the tsunami and resulting radiation exposure. An almost certain rise in cancer rates for millions of people is the best case scenario from the continued leakage from Fukushima Daiichi reactors No. 1, 2, 3, and 4. It is our intention to limit the exposure of human beings to this risk to the greatest extend possible.

Statement of Purpose. It is the belief of the undersigned that the dangerous radioactive rubble at Fukushima Power Plants and the other areas around must be left at the site of the disaster. Efforts must be focused on ending the ongoing fires at the plant, and people should be evacuated from the immediate area in accordance with radiation levels set before March 11th. All recent Japanese Government policy changes to increase allowable radiation levels must be overturned to pre-disaster levels.

Today Japanese government is systematically spreading radioactive material, publicly hosting events to eat food from Fukushima as a patriotic act, raising radiation safe standard for food and rubble alike. For example in Japan today food reading 499 bq/kg can be legally distributed in the market without any label for consumers. Similarly has twice raised allowable levels of radiation for rubble which they will now ship across the country to be burned and dumped into the ocean at locations including Tokyo Bay. This negligent behavior must be stopped or an already devastating event will turn into an historic environmental disaster with international reach. The Japanese Environmental Ministry estimates 23.82 million tons of rubble resulted from the March disaster in the coastal areas of Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures. This rubble is one of many obstacles that Japanese are facing, because they must remove the rubble in order to rebuild their lives. If the rubble piled up everywhere were not a big enough problem for the government, there is the added fact that much of this rubble contains radioactive material from the nuclear spill.

Tokyo’s local government officially accepted 1,000 tons of rubble from Iwate, they will transport the debris on trains and burn it and use the ashes as landfill in Tokyo Bay starting at the end of October, 2011. Iwate Prefectural government estimates indicate that the rubble contains 133 bq/kg of radioactive material. This would have been illegal before March but the Japanese Government changed the safety level for rubble from 100 bq/kg to 8000 bq/kg in July, 2011, then again to 10,000 bq/kg in October. Tokyo officials announced that they will accept 500,000 tons of rubble in total.

In the same Iwate prefecture, On August 12th, 2011, 1130 bq/kg readings were detected on firewood (on surface bark) , and the Kyoto local authority who was going to burn it for a popular religious event decided not to do so because of the contamination.

It is difficult to accurately speculate about the consequences of these government actions, but no one can argue that a huge environmental gamble is being waged.

The problem is not restricted to the Tokyo area, which is geographically near the impacted areas. The governor of Tokyo stated that he hopes this would encourage other local authorities to accept rubble. The Minister of the Environment, Mr. Hosono, said in a September 4, 2011 press conference that "it is the consideration of the national government [or as Japan as the nation] to share the pain of Fukushima with everyone [or everywhere] in Japan," reiterating his intention to create a final processing facility outside Fukushima Prefecture for debris and dirt from near the nuclear accident to be burned. If many other local governments in Japan decide to follow Tokyo’s lead it will cause areas where are not yet directly impacted by the radioactive spill to contaminate their local soil and water.

We are asking you to please discourage the Japanese government from spreading, burning and dumping rubble from contaminated areas. It should be left on site and people should be evacuated from those areas according to the standards in place before March 11th. It is the opinion of the undersigned that, if allowed to proceed, we will witness an historic error conducted by the Japanese government that will negatively impact human lives for hundreds of years. The alternative is that we act immediately to prevent this unnecessary outcome, and history will remember this only as the time that Fukushima Daiichi region was rendered uninhabitable rather than a worse, if uncertain, alternative.

Initiator : One World No Nukes [NY,USA] --http://www.oneworldnonukes.org/

Endorsers : Bianca Jagger [UK] Helen Caldicott Foundation [AUSTRALIA] Todos Somos Japon [NY,USA] SHUT TOMARI [Hokkaido, JAPAN] Save Fukushima Children [Hokkaido, JAPAN] OKATON [Osaka, JAPAN] KansaiFuture [Osaka, JAPAN] SHINENTAI [Osaka, JAPAN] RadiationTruth.org [NY, USA] Team Coco [Fukushima, JAPAN] C.A.N. Coalition Against Nukes [USA] Protection of Children from Radiation Daito Network [Osaka, JAPAN] Green Action [Kyoto, Japan] Rete Nazionale Antinucleare [ITALY] Abolition 2000 NY Metro [NY, USA] DiaNuke.org [INDIA] Rock The Reactors [CT, USA] Nuclear Information and Resource Service [Washington DC,USA] Shut Down Indian Point Now! [NY, USA] Street Corner Resources [Harlem NY, USA] Beyond Nuclear [MD, USA] Ecological Options Network [CA, USA] Joanna Macy, PhD [CA, USA] Time's Up! Environmental Organization [NY, USA]

Go Here To Sign Online: http://tinyurl.com/5wc73fl


The Scariest Halloween Story is the one where the nasties appear as respectable types who say "Don't Worry Everything is OK!" The viewer has a hunch that there will be an inevitable doom laden slide to a scary

With nice timing for the scary Halloween season the Managing Radioactive Wastes Safely Partnership have produced a draft consultation document which will be used to continue promoting the "steps towards geological disposal" of high level nuclear wastes in Cumbria's leaky geology.

The document which will be discussed in Egremont this thursday says:

"We wanted to be 'confident in the integrity of the BGS (British Geological Society) screening work/report'.

Our initial opinions are:

BGS study. We are confident in the integrity of the BGS screening report because it has been endorsed by two independent reviewers and there is no significant criticism of the study's integrity from elsewhere".


Really? "No significant Criticism" ?

What about the significant criticism from:

The Nirex Inspector

Members of the original Committee on Radioactive Waste Management

Dr Helen Wallace- author of the Rock Solid? Scientific review

Dr Rachel Western - former employee of Nirex- researcher for Cumbrian

Friends of the Earth groups

Professor David Smythe - former employee of Nirex

Tim Farron MP


There are many more significant criticisms!


The good news is that unlike the viewer or reader of a scary Halloween

story, Cumbria has the wherewithal to stop the slide into the unfathomable


Friday, 21 October 2011

The film "3 miles to Gorakhpur" is about an anti nuclear protest in Haryana, India

The Hindu   NEW DELHI, October 21, 2011

Gorakhpur Village's protest against nuclear power plant 3 Mile away
Staff Reporter

Protesting against the proposed nuclear power plant at Gorakhpur village in Haryana, a group people associated with the struggle on Thursday gathered at the Indian Social Institute in Lodhi Road for the screening of a film 3 Mile to Gorakhpur and a discussion on the issue.

“A majority of villagers of Gorakhpur are opposed to the proposed nuclear power plant because it will come up in a densely populated area with over 20,000 people. The Government is planning to acquire 1,305 acres here and about 185 acres in the adjoining Badopala village. People in these villages and nearby areas are afraid of any possible nuclear radiation or related accidents,” said Bharat Jan Vigyan Jatha national convenor Soumya Dutta who has been associated with the protest.

The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd, which had proposed the building of the plant, had sent notices to the villagers last year informing them about land acquisition. Opposing this move, lead by Kisan Sangharsh Samiti, farmers from the villages of Gorakhpur, Badopala and nearby villages are participating in a sit-in dharna which started on August 17 last year shortly after the land acquisition notices were sent.

Highlighting the issue

“While the villagers are not ready to give in, the Government too has to understand that this is a very fertile land that they are planning to take over. They will also be using the only water source for the plant that will eat into the villagers' water source which is used for drinking and irrigation,” added Mr. Dutta.

“The villagers have been protesting against the plant for the past fifteen months. Most women here are very attached to their land. Most of them say that the money the men will get will be spent and the families will suffer. Most say that they will not sell their land. The idea of bringing the film and discussion to Delhi is to highlight the issue and generate more public discussion,” said Mr. Dutta.

An informal information platform for activists and scholars concerned about the dangers of Nuclearisation in South Asia


Radiation leak from Pakistani nuclear power plant

Pakistan Peace Coalition expresses concern over leakage incident at KANUPP; demands shutting down of nuclear power plants in Pakistan

KARACHI, Oct. 20 [2011]: Pakistan Peace Coalition (PPC) has expressed serious concern over the leakage of heavy water from a feeder pipe of the reactor at Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (KANUPP) and asked the government to get rid of this nuclear power plant, which is actually non productive, but posing great threat to human lives and also to the coastal environment of Karachi.

In a statement issued here Thursday, PPC General Secretary B. M. Kutty said the government has not provided any details for the release of radiation as a result of this accident. As reported in the newspapers, the Director General KANUPP Javed Iqbal declined to give any details when contacted, saying the situation was reported to the head office in Islamabad and they could not comment on it.

The safety of the current nuclear installations remain a serious concern because there is very little information on security measures adopted to protect the population from any potential risk in case of mishap at any of the country's nuclear plants. Nuclear facilities in Pakistan are precariously located, particularly the KANUPP that is stationed alongside the coast. An earlier letter written by civil society organisations to the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission to demand a copy of the Karachi Emergency Relief Plan, in case of a nuclear disaster, met with no response. Concerns have also been raised against the authorities, practice of dumping uranium waste near the mines in Dera Ghazi Khan. According to reports the incidence of leukemia is higher in the region. Kutty pointed out that a similar incident of the leakage of heavy water had also taken place some 20 years ago at KANUPP, but the government did not provide any details at that time. It is the right of public to know the factual position of release of radiation and extent of the threat to human health.

The recent incident at the KANUPP is a cause of grave concern as PPC had already feared the happening of such incidents at the nuclear plant. The radiation leaks at the two nuclear power stations, Fukushima-Daiichi and Fukushima-Daini in Japan following a powerful 9.0 magnitude earthquake off the Pacific coast in last March had put the population of Japan at great risk, and should have proved to be an eye-opener to our authorities. The PCC demanded the government to put a stop to the ongoing nuclear programmes, while any plans of expanding the countryâ?Ts current nuclear power generation capacity must be immediately called off. The nuclear contribution to the current Pakistani total electricity supply is very limited, while the hazards it poses far outweigh its utility. According to the recent estimates, nuclear capacity represents merely 2.4 percent of the total installed capacity of 19,252 MWe in Pakistan, but the cost to the people and the country in the return would be quite high. Kutty demanded the government to provide exact information of the radiation release to the public and no further work be allowed on this age-old, almost obsolete, plant.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Anti nuclear protest in France

1000s urge end to nuclear activities in France

Sun Oct 16, 2011 8:52AM GMT -http://presstv.com/detail/204854.html

Thousands of activists have staged demonstrations in seven cities across France, calling for an end to all forms of nuclear activity in the country.

Some 25,000 activists from 900 French anti-nuclear groups took part in the Saturday rallies, which were organized by Sortir du nucléaire (Nuclear phase-out) federation.

The demonstrators called on the government to halt all its military and civilian nuclear activities, and criticized Paris for continuing its nuclear policy while France's neighboring countries have already announced plans to scrap their nuclear facilities, AFP reported.

The protesters particularly called for the closure of Bugey nuclear plant in eastern France, which they say is susceptible to high risks of earthquake and flood.

They also held a minute of silence in honor of the victims of Fukushima nuclear disaster in eastern Japan, and urged the French government to take lessons from Japan's tragedy and turn to renewable energies.

Since a 9.0-magnitude earthquake and a devastating tsunami on March 11, the Daiichi Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan has been leaking radiation into the air, soil.

The quake triggered a nuclear crisis by knocking out power to cooling systems at the nuclear power plant on Japan's northeast coast.
(Le Monde - 15 octobre 2011)

Plusieurs milliers de manifestants ont défilé contre le nucléaire en France‎


Friday, 14 October 2011

Anti nuclear blockade in Tamil Nadu, India

10,000 protesters lay siege to Tamil Nadu nuclear plant site
By Kumar Chellappan  Place: Chennai   Agency: DNA

The agitation against Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant near Tirunelveli reached a feverish pitch on Thursday with more than 10,000 activists laying siege to all the entry points to the project site.

More than 700 scientists and technicians who reached the KNPP for their morning shift could not enter the reactor premises which broughtroutine works to a grinding halt.

“The maintenance works were carried out by the staff on overnight duty who could not come out of the plant because of the road block,” a senior executive of the KNPP told DNA.

This is the first time in the history of the country that the works in a nuclear reactor were affectedfollowing agitation by the local residents.

The People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy intensified their agitation within 12 hours of the Prime Minister’s letter to chief minister Jayalalithaa reached the Fort Saint George.

In his letter Manmohan Singh asked Jayalalithaa to help the union government to implement the project as scheduled. He also offered to depute a group of experts to address the legitimate concerns of the people in Kudankulam.

But Pushparayan, the second-in-command to Udaya Kumar , who heads the PMANE, declared that the agitation would continue in a peaceful manner till the reactor was shut down.

“Today morning’s road block is an indication that our agitation has entered into a critical phase. We will not allow anyone to enter the KNPP premises. Today’s blockade has instilled a moral fear in the minds of the KNPP staff,” said Pushparayan.

The road block which began at 8 am in the East Coast Road was shifted to vantage points near the KNPP. “Ours is a Gandhian style agitation and we do not want to create any inconvenience to the people. But this agitation will continue till the government orders the closure of the plant. We do not want the nuclear reactors,” he said.

Even N K Balaji, project director, KNPP could not go inside the plant. “I was asked by the district administration to stay put in my house since the roads have been blocked by the agitators,” he said. Both the Tirunelveli collector and superintendent of police wereunavailable. “Both of them are busy with election duties and conferences ,” said thepersonal assistant to the collector.

Balaji feigned ignorance when asked whether the unit 1 of 1000 MW of the KNPP could be commissionedin October as scheduled. The Prime Minister in his letter had told Jayalalithaa that Tamil Nadu is entitled for 925 MW power once both the units are commissioned.

Intelligence officials said that the agitators resorted to road block because Jayalalithaa was campaigning in the district in connection with the election to the local bodies. “Though she has declared that her support was with the agitators, we are not giving any significance to it. Let her walk the talk for us to believe her assurances,” said Pushparayan.

Meanwhile, a former top intelligence bureau official expressed apprehensions over the agencies behind the agitation. “The possibility of some invisible forces working in a systematic manner to undermine national interests is quite likely. It will, however, require an intensive probe, for which one only wonders how much the present government has the capacity, time and commitment,” he told

Source: Daily News and Analysis, Oct 13, 2011, 18:00 IST


An informal information platform for activists and scholars concerned about the dangers of Nuclearisation in South Asia


Sunday, 9 October 2011

Blockade of nuclear power station at Grohnde in Germany

antinuclear protestors block traffic

anti nuclear protestors abseil from nearby bridge to nuclear power station with banner

Several hundreds of people protested today, Sunday October 2, 2011 in Grohnde (Lower Saxony). After a demonstration the access roads to the NPP are blockaded by climbing activists who abseiled from a highway
bridge. They are supported by some 50 activists blockading the road and an operating track with a sit-in. A second access road is blocked by an announced and permitted anti-nuclear concert in front of the atomic power station. Though police new about the action day, they could not prevent the blockades.

With speeches at the railway station a few kilometers from the Grohnde atomic power station the rally started with several hundreds of people. Many tractors and other vehicles accompanied the demonstration showing the farmers protest against the dangerous facility. Arrived at the NPP speakers with several NGOs, activists and foreign anti-nuclear campaigners informed about the threats connected to the Grohnde NPP and other atomic power in general and demanded the immediate phase-out of all nuclear facilities worldwide.

Afterwards an anti-nuclear concert was started on a stage in front of the NPP's cooling towers to be continued the whole night.

Several anti-nuclear organizations had provided information stalls besides the main access road to the nuclear power plant, coffee and other drinks were provided as well as vegan food for the protesters that are supposed to stay at the NPP site for 24 hours. A big meadow was provided for individual tents as well as a big circus tent has been set up for the activists. The anti-nuclear concert next to the main access road blocks this street to the NPP as there are so many people to join the music.

Police still behaves calm and didn't intervene much when the access roads to the Grohnde NPP were set up. Around 5 PM CET the first blockade was set up at a highway bridge crossing another access road to the nuclear site. They abseiled with banners demanding the total nuclear phase-out and an end of the uranium industry that provides the nuclear power stations with fuel. One hour later a smaller blockade of a couple of people was set up with a chair and a sign saying "sit out Grohnde" ("Grohnde AUSsitzen") on the road stopping police cars being supposed to support the police forces dealing with the abseiling action. A sit-in blockade on an industrial track and on the road beneath the bridge supported the climbing action with up to
50 people on the ground.

Four hours after the abseiling blockade action started the access road is still blockaded.

Around 9.40 PM CET a message was send from the stage to the audience and police objecting to their order to open the main access road for the NPP workers' verhicles. They read out the official demonstration
orders made by the police beforehand only forcing the street to be opened for emergency vehicles on short notice if necessary. Thus, the anti-nuclear protesters argue, they don't have to clear the road just for the workers, and they won't do so. After a couple of minutes the police unit that had tried to force to open the road went off.

A couple of minutes later police rudely pushed blockaders from the road next to the blockaded bridge to send a couple of workers' cars to the nuclear power plant for the shift change. No one has been hurt yet, although police treated them with rude force. Currently, police is endagering one of the climbing activists by trying to remove their securing ropes.

Around 10 PM CET police ordered the announcer of the demonstration to reduce the demonstration to make it possible for the workers to reach the NPP. Protesters are refusing to follow that order as they believe police has no legal right to change the orders for the demonstration afterwards just to let the workers enter the NPP.

updates and photos:


Anti nuclear blockade at Hinkley Point

Stop New Nuclear

A campaign to stop new nuclear power stations

Email: campaign@stopnewnuclear.org.uk Web: http://stopnewnuclear.org.uk

c/o 5 Caledonian Road, London N1 9DX, Phone: 0845-2872381

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

29 Sept anniversary of the third worst nuclear accident in the world

Map of the East Urals Radioactive Trace (EURT): area contaminated by the Kyshtym disaster.

The Kyshtym disaster - Russia

In September 1957, the cooling system in one of the tanks containing about 70–80 tons of liquid radioactive waste failed and was not repaired. The temperature in it started to rise, resulting in evaporation and a chemical explosion of the dried waste. The explosion, estimated to have a force of about 70–100 tons of TNT threw the concrete lid, weighing 160 tons, into the air.[3] There were no immediate casualties as a result of the explosion, which released an estimated 2 to 50 MCi (74 to 1850 PBq) of radioactivity.[2][4][5]

In the next 10 to 11 hours, the radioactive cloud moved towards the northeast, reaching 300–350 kilometers from the accident. The fallout of the cloud resulted in a long-term contamination of an area of more than 800 square kilometers, primarily with caesium-137 and strontium-90.[2] This area is usually referred to as the East-Ural Radioactive Trace (EURT).[6]

References1.^ a b Schlager, Neil (1994). When Technology Fails. Detroit: Gale Research. ISBN 0-8103-8908-8.

2.^ a b c "Chelyabinsk-65". http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/russia/chelyabinsk-65_nuc.htm.

3.^ a b "Conclusions of government commission" (in Russian). http://nuclear.tatar.mtss.ru/arxiv/332.htm.

4.^ Kabakchi, S. A.; A. V. Putilov (1 1995). "Data Analysis and Physicochemical Modeling of the Radiation Accident in the Southern Urals in 1957". Moscow ATOMNAYA ENERGIYA (1): 46–50. http://www.fas.org/news/russia/1995/fbust037_95011.htm.

5.^ See also List of military nuclear accidents

6.^ Dicus, Greta Joy (January 16, 1997). "Joint American-Russian Radiation Health Effects Research". United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission. http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/commission/speeches/1997/s97-04.html. Retrieved 30 September 2010.

7.^ Pollock, Richard (1978). "Soviets Experience Nuclear Accident". Critical Mass Journal.

8.^ Medvedev, Zhores A. Nuclear disaster in the Urals translated by George Saunders. 1st Vintage Books ed. New York : Vintage Books, 1980, c1979, ISBN 0394744454.

9.^ Diane M. Soran; Danny B. Stillman (1982). An Analysis of the Alleged Kyshtym Disaster. Los Alamos National Laboratory. http://www.osti.gov/bridge/purl.cover.jsp;jsessionid=AE63F0635724B2D67229E70E6BAE485A?purl=/5254763-UCvDE3/.

10.^ a b "The Southern Urals radiation studies: A reappraisal of the current status". Journal of Radiation and Environmental Biophysics 41. 2002. http://www.springerlink.com/content/x3ghck8x96b74n53/.

11.^ John R. Trabalka (1979), "Russian Experience" pp. 3–8 in Environmental Decontamination: Proceedings of the Workshop, December 4–5, 1979, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, CONF-791234

12.^ The Nuclear Disaster They Didn't Want To Tell You About/Andrew Cockburn/ Esquire Magazine/ April 26 1978

13.^ Gyorgy, A. (1979). No Nukes: Everyone's Guide to Nuclear Power. ISBN 0919618952.

14.^ "The decision of Nikipelov Commission" (in Russian). http://nuclear.tatar.mtss.ru/of280490.htm.

15.^ R. Jeffrey Smith (Jul 10, 1989). "Soviets Tell About Nuclear Plant Disaster; 1957 Reactor Mishap May Be Worst Ever". The Washington Post: A1. http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/washingtonpost/access/73886738.html?FMT=ABS&FMTS=ABS:FT&date=Jul+10%2C+1989&author=R.+Jeffrey+Smith&pub=The+Washington+Post+%28pre-1997+Fulltext%29&edition=&startpage=a.01&desc=Soviets+Tell+About+Nuclear+Plant+Disaster%3B1957+Reactor+Mishap+May+Be+Worst+Ever.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

India postpones buying nuclear reactors from France

Since the Fukushima disaster in Japan, the Indian government has become concerned about the safety of the nuclear reactors that they were going to order from France. They have postponed their decision to buy the EPR reactors.

How come the British government is still backing EDF's plan to build this type of reactor at Hinkley?

Vaiju Naravane wrote in The Hindu,  Paris, September 20, 2011

"India will postpone its final decision on the purchase of EPR type nuclear reactors from France until after the current post-Fukushima nuclear safety tests have been satisfactorily completed, it is reliably learnt.

Srikumar Banerjee, Chairman of India's Atomic Energy Commission, conveyed this message to French Industry Minister Eric Besson when the two met during the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) consultations which opened in Vienna. Mr. Besson said: “Dr. Banerjee said India imports only reactors which have been certified by their own authorities. The EPR has already been certified. Now they want the post-Fukushima certification.” However, he added that the Indians had conveyed this message “in a very positive manner.”

Several nuclear contracts around the world have been either frozen, delayed or cancelled as a result of the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, the worst nuclear accident to hit the planet after the Chernobyl explosion of 1986, putting into doubt the much-vaunted “nuclear renaissance.” Germany has chosen to forgo the nuclear option altogether and in France there is talk of reducing the country's dependence on nuclear energy to 50 per cent from the current 75 per cent, by 2025.

The EPR plant under construction at Flamanville (northern France) has seen interminable delays and a massive cost hike. Two persons have died on the construction site and the plant is not expected to go on stream before 2016 at the very least. EDF, the most experienced constructor in the world, has admitted it has not mastered the engineering techniques demanded by the hugely complex and complicated design of the massive 1,650 MWe pressurised water reactor. There is not a single EPR plant operating to date and the Olkiluoto plant in Finland too has seen massive cost overruns and long delays, with the result that the Finns and Areva are locked in a protracted legal battle.

In December 2010 Areva signed a framework agreement with India to build the first of six EPR reactors at Jaitapur in Maharashtra with an option of four more reactors to follow. But Areva will build only the nuclear island while the turbine island and other installations will have to be built by contractors chosen by the NPCIL. Fears have been expressed that with EDF, the most experienced builder and operator of nuclear reactors in the world unable to get it right in Flamanville, the Indian side may not be able to ensure proper construction and safety. There is also some uncertainty about the central dome of the EPR which is forged by the Japanese. Japan, with its aggressive anti-nuclear stand (especially on proliferation issues) may not agree to the technology transfer to India.

On September 15, France's major nuclear operators including Areva and electricity giant EDF handed in their self-evaluation reports on 80 installations to the nuclear safety agency, the ASN. This body, along with the IRSN (Institute of Radio-protection and Nuclear Safety) will now examine the self-evaluations submitted by the three nuclear players in France and hand in its report by the end of 2011.

Already nuclear watchdog agencies such as Sortir du Nuclear (Quitting Nuclear), the Nuclear Observatory and several ecologist groups have criticised the method of self-evaluation adopted by the ASN and the French government.

“No credibility can be accorded to this type of self-evaluation by commercial enterprises. They have no desire whatsoever to see their operations halted for further verification,” said Stephane Lhomme, of the NGO Nuclear Observatory. “The only way to really verify all the safety factors and mechanisms is by halting the installations. This is not to speak of the totally unresolved questions of nuclear waste or the decommissioning of old reactors.”

“These tests are all fluff,” said nuclear scientist Jean-Marie Brom, who works at the Centre for Scientific Research in Strasbourg and is a member of Sortir du Nucleaire. “We are not in any way better prepared to prevent nuclear accidents. Had Tepco been asked to do a safety report on Fukushima a year ago, the company would have said it was perfectly safe.”

A recent blast at France's oldest nuclear site in Marcule which killed one person and injured four has reignited the debate on nuclear safety in France."


An informal information platform for activists and scholars concerned about the dangers of Nuclearisation in South Asia


Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Anti Nuclear Hunger Strike at Koodankulam, south India

Koodankulam Updates:

The non-violent hunger strike at Idinthakarai has entered its 9th day but the state and central governments have turned a blind eye and deaf ear to the demands of the people. In the meantime, the situation of many of the hunger strikers continues to deteriorate to an alarming level. More than 15,000 people have been gathering every day for the past 8 days from 30 odd villages and towns around Koodankulam from three districts, viz. Kanyakumari, Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli. The protest has spread to many parts of Tamil Nadu and Kerala with southern Tamil Nadu turning out to be the epicenter of protests. For the eighth day in succession, fishermen, farmers, manual laborers, merchants of the area did not go to work while students have boycotted educational institutions. Shops remain closed in many places around Idinthakarai.

The men and women who gather everyday to participate in the protest also fast throughout the day. People of Hindu, Muslims and Christian faiths and of all major caste groups are involved in the hunger strike and the relay fast by tens of thousands of people. Leaders of most of the major political parties have come and expressed their support to the protest and a few of them have also announced specific protest programs.

The authorities have foisted false cases on 500 odd people and a few have been put in jail. A huge police battalion has been posted near Idinthakarai and neighboring villages. Road blocks have been created and public transport has been suspended by authorities who are preventing people from coming to the protest in all possible ways.

With the swiftly deteriorating health situation of the fasters and lack of any serious or official initiative on the part of the governments to talk, some people are losing their patience. Justice V.R. Krishna Iyer has issued a call to the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister to intervene immediately and has also asked the movement to continue the protesters without putting the lives of the people in danger or resorting to violence. Medha Patkar is joining the protest today. The protest needs intervention from eminent and respected personalities like you and solidarity and support from groups across the country to force the governments to act and save the lives of fasters and to maintain a peaceful atmosphere.

K.Sahadevan    from Koodankulam


An informal information platform for activists and scholars concerned about the dangers of Nuclearisation in South Asia


Anti Nuclear Protest at Koodankulam, India

India began to build these nuclear power stations in 1991 in Tamil Nadu, Southern India.
Recently local people, many of whom are fishermen, realising that their livelihoods are at stake, are protesting. They fear that the radioactive waste discharged from the reactor will contaminate the fish. They also fear a Fukushima-type disaster since Tamil Nadu has been hit by tsunamis.


Nuclear Waste and the Green Party

Well at least the Green Party care what happens to our nuclear waste.
They may not have a solution to the nuclear waste problem, but then who has? There is no satisfactory solution. But clearly burying it underground, out of site, out of mind, is not the right thing to do. Geologists have already carried out surveys in Cumbria and come to the conclusion that nuclear waste buried there would leak radioactivity out into the ground water. The current government has decided to ignore geological reports and push ahead with deep geological disposal.

But the Green Party proposed at their Autumn Conference:

"We call on policy committee to develop a policy on legacy high and intermediate level radioactive waste in time for Spring Conference 2012. The policy to be based on best environmental practice, not political expediency We also call on Conference to support Allerdale and Copeland Green Party and other local groups, including West Cumbria Friends of the Earth, Radiation Free Lakeland, and CORE in their work to oppose the deep geological disposal plans and to call for alternative disposal methods to be revisited. In particular lobbying local authorities not to proceed to the next stage of the Managing Radioactive Waste Safely (MRWS)process (January 2012), at which stage the right of withdrawal would be severely compromised proposed"

More Power to the Green Party

Friday, 16 September 2011

Japan Receives Reprocessed Radioactive Waste

QBy Chisaki Watanabe - Sep 15, 2011

Photograph shows the Pacific Grebe. Source: International Nuclear Services Ltd. via Bloomberg

.A ship carrying radioactive waste arrived in Japan, the first shipment of the dangerous material since the March 11 earthquake and tsunami that triggered the Fukushima nuclear crisis.

The 5,100-ton Pacific Grebe arrived at Mutsu-Ogawara port in northern Japan today, Masako Sawai, a member of Tokyo-based Citizen’s Nuclear Information Center, said by phone. She was among about 50 protesters at the port.

Japan Nuclear Fuel Ltd. is receiving the cargo of spent fuel from Japanese nuclear plants that was reprocessed in the U.K. Kyoji Ebisawa, a spokesman at the company, said he can’t comment on the arrival until the waste is delivered to the nearby Rokkasho storage site later today.

Thousands of workers are struggling to contain radiation leaks after the meltdown of three reactors at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant, about 400 kilometers (240 miles) south of the port.

“The accident at Fukushima hasn’t been resolved,” Sawai said. “We are concerned accidents can happen during the transportation of radioactive waste.

The Pacific Grebe set sail from the port of Barrow-in- Furness in the U.K. on Aug. 3. The waste is sealed in 76 stainless steel canisters.

Japan contracted the U.K. and France to process its fuel in the 1970s and waste from the process is shipped back for storage. Today’s cargo is the second shipment from the U.K. and about eight more shipments are scheduled through 2020, according to Ebisawa.

To contact the reporter on this story: Chisaki Watanabe in Tokyo at cwatanabe5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Peter Langan at plangan@bloomberg.net; Teo Chian Wei at cwteo@bloomberg.net


Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Nuclear Explosion in Southern France


There is a nuclear reprocessing plant near the Marcoute nuclear plant. This plant takes radioactive metal, among other things, and melts it down for recycling. The oven used for melting the metal exploded, killing one worker, seriously injuring another and slightly injuring two others.

What happens to the metal after it has been melted down???


Monday, 8 August 2011

Japan’s prime minister wants a future without nuclear power

Japan’s prime minster, using the occasion of Friday’s anniversary of the Hiroshima atomic bomb dropped by the United States, has pledged a nuclear free future for his country – making it a fourth nation to turn it’s back on atomic energy in the wake of Fukushima Daiichi.

Prime Minister Naoto Kan was the first highly placed Japanese official to speak publicly in explicitly anti-nuclear terms.

Addressing those gathered to commemorate the 66th anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Kan said the ongoing crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, which was rocked by an earthquake and tsunami on March 11, means Japan must turn to other energy sources.

"The large-scale, long-running nuclear accident has triggered radiation leakage, causing serious concerns not only in Japan but also in the world," said Kan at a memorial ceremony in Hiroshima's Peace Park, as quoted by Agency France Presse.

"I will reduce Japan's reliance on nuclear power, aiming at creating a society that will not rely on atomic power generation," he added.

Kan, a one time environmental activist, promised to boost alternative energy sources to 20 per cent of the nation's energy mix by the 2020s. They currently make up about nine per cent, most of it hydroelectric power – and another 20 percent is accounted for by nuclear power.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Hiroshima mayor's antinuclear speech

August 6th is Hiroshima Day, when Japan commemorates the atomic bomb which was dropped on Hiroshima towards the end of the second world war. The Mayor of Hiroshima gave a speech urging the Japanese government to move away from nuclear energy

The mayor of Nagasaki also said he will urge the government to promote renewables, rather than nuclear energy, in his peace declaration ceremony on Aug. 9.

Both ceremonies can be watched on:

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

EDF allowed to clear Hinkley site

Anti-nuclear campaigners have slammed a council’s decision to allow EDF Energy to begin clearing land earmarked for a nuclear reactor. And they pledged to step-up their campaign of direct action against the energy giant.

Activists from the Stop New Nuclear network branded West Somerset Council’s decision yesterday to allow EDF to start bulldozing 400 acres next to Somerset’s Hinkley Point nuclear power station as a ‘circus and a travesty’. The planning committee’s decision paves the way for preparatory work to begin on the Hinkley C mega-reactor.

Local Bridgwater resident and activist, Nikki Clark, said campaigners are now gearing up for a mass blockade of Hinkey Point on October 3rd. ‘‘The planning committee was more concerned about the road layout that the social and environmental impact of such a huge power plant. Our only hope now is to physically stop the trashing of much-loved woodlands and pastures with our bodies.’

She added: ‘The travesty of the event was emphasized by the fact that permission for a wind farm on the same site was refused two years ago because of concerns about its environmental impacts. These will be dwarfed by the devastation planned by EDF.’

Campaigners maintain that ‘new nuclear’ power is dangerous and expensive. ‘After the Fukushima accident in Japan, the government should be pausing to consider the lessons rather than ploughing mindlessly ahead,’ said Stop Hinkley spokesman Crispin Aubrey. ‘Other countries are showing that a non-nuclear renewable future is feasible – we should be following their lead.’

The German government recently announced a complete phase-out of nuclear power within a decade. Its report, Germany’s Energy Turnaround – a collective effort for the future also rules out a increase in the use of fossil fuels.

‘The secret ingredient is an upscaling in the use of combined heat and power – a proven technology that will support a national energy efficiency programme,’ says Camilla Berens from Kick Nuclear. ‘The burning question is, if the German government can do, why can’t ours? We want a future, not a disaster.’

The Stop New Nuclear network objects to EDF's preparatory works because:

• There is no certainty that EDF will go ahead with building Hinkley C, partly for financial reasons. The company’s prototype power station at Flamanville in France is now four years behind schedule and its cost has almost doubled to £6 billion.

• If the French company does not gain approval for the power station from the Infrastructure Planning Commission, over 400 acres of beautiful countryside will have been needlessly trashed. EDF claims that it could be returned to its original state is a nonsense.

• The amount of time allegedly to be saved – about a year – is insignificant compared with the overall timescale of building nuclear plants of up to 10 years. This is simply an exercise in EDF “jumping the gun”.

• There is no energy gap which cannot be filled by other means, as nuclear supporters claim. Other non-nuclear power stations can be built faster and cheaper while we move towards a safer, cleaner future based on renewable sources.

• Any supposed economic benefits to the area from this work will be outweighed by the disruption it will cause. The Planning Officer's report accepts, for example, that the employment benefits are “likely to be relatively small… compared to the local impacts”.
More information on the Stop New Nuclear mass blockade can be found at:

radiation leak in Indian nuclear power plant - Kakrapar

Yet again, poor temporary workers have been exposed to radiation working in a nuclear power plant, this time in India. And yet again the nuclear power plant tried to cover it up. It was only when the exposed workers went to the District Collector that the matter became public knowledge.

Officials of the Kakrapar atomic power station (KAPS) confirmed on Monday that four contract workers were exposed to nuclear radiation in the plant on May 30, 2011 due to human error of the control room staff. However, they said that the radiation was of a very minor level and that it had no effect on the health of the workers. (Well they would say that wouldn't they. I find it hard to believe that the radiation they were exposed to was minor, considering how highly radioactive spent fuel is. Angela)

KAPS is 75 km from Surat and about 12 km from Vyara which is the main city of Tapi district. It produces 440 MW from two units of 220 MW each which went critical in 1993 and 1995. Two more units of 700 MW each are being built and the work will be completed by 2015.
The four daily-wage labourers were exposed to radiation when they were cleaning and painting a tunnel called the Spent Fuel Transfer Duct (SFTD). The control room released a pair of spent fuel bundles in the duct while the labourers were in it. According to Dutta, "The workers came out when realized that something was amiss as their thermo luminiscence detectors started glowing.''

Dutta said that a team of the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board visited KAPS on June 1 to inquire about the accident and make an inspection. However, the matter became public knowledge only when the four workers petitioned the Tapi district collector last week, saying that they wanted permanent jobs as compensation for suffering nuclear radiation. The collector sought an explanation from KAPS.

Dutta said all the four affected labourers worked in the nuclear plant for at least 20 days each in the months of June and July 2011, i.e. in the two months after the accident. "The two members of the staff responsible for the error have been put back into training and relieved of their duties of control room," he said.

The affected workers hail from Kalavyara village and their names are Jaysingh Chaudhary, Bachu Chaudhary, Dinesh Chaudhary and Dilesh Chaudhary. According to the KAPS report, they suffered radiation effects of 90.72 MSD, 66.12 MSD, 58.70 MSD and 23.23 MSD, respectively.

Himansshu Bhatt, TNN  The Times of India  Aug 1, 2011

An informal information platform for activists and scholars concerned about the dangers of Nuclearisation in South Asia


Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Japanese lawyers oppose nukes

Lawyers join hands to stop nuclear power plants

Lawyers from around Japan are joining hands to take legal action to shutdown nuclear power plants.

Over 50 lawyers from 20 prefectures that host nuclear plants convened in Tokyo on Saturday.

They decided to file a lawsuit to stop the resumption of reactor 1 at the Oi plant in Fukui Prefecture, which is about to be taken offline because of a malfunction. They will also file to prevent the restart of reactor 1 at the Takahama plant, which is undergoing regular inspections.

The lawyers intend to launch a procedure in autumn to stop the construction of the Oma plant in Aomori Prefecture. The project has been suspended since the March 11th disaster.

FUKUSHIMA vigil 28 July

SOUTH WEST AGAINST NUCLEAR is holding a vigil for FUKUSHIMA outside the West Somerset council offices (Killick Way, Williton TA4 4QA) on 28th JULY.

West Somerset Council will be meeting from 10 a.m. to decide whether the preliminary works for Hinkley C should start.

Also, a reminder that there will be a major non-violent demonstration against Hinkley C outside the proposed site for the new power station on Monday 3rd October from 7 a.m. More information at:

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Radioactive Waste geological disposal in Cumbria

In 1997 Nirex put forward a proposal called the Pangea Project, in order to get rid of British high level radioactive waste in Australia  The Australian parliament refused in 2000.

BNFL, Golder Associates and Swiss radioactive waste quango Nagra were all involved in the Pangea Project. They produced a promotional video:


This official short video outlines the need for "large flat, dry, remote areas" and rules out the idea of putting nuclear waste in areas where there is "high rainfall, permeable rocks, and mountains which would drive the water flow".

Funny how our government now seems to be happy to bury our highly radioactive waste in Cumbria, which has (yes you guessed it) high rainfall, permeable rocks, and mountains which would drive the water flow.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Pakistan is not capable of keeping nuclear arms safe says top nuclear physicist

Shubhajit Roy

Posted: Mon Jun 27 2011, 03:24 hrs Islamabad:

Pakistan’s establishment lacks the ability to keep its nuclear weapons safe, says one of the country’s top nuclear experts, pointing out that the weapons are guarded by personnel of the Pakistan Army which has been infiltrated for decades by radical elements.

Pervez A Hoodbhoy, who teaches nuclear physics at Islamabad’s government-run Quaid-e-Azam University, spoke to The Indian Express in Islamabad. His comments came amid growing concerns on the safety of nuclear weapons in Pakistan.

“It doesn’t matter whether Pakistan’s chief of army staff Ashfaq Parvez Kayani swears on the Quran that he will make sure that nuclear weapons will be safe. The question is, does he have the power to do that?” said Hoodbhoy, 60, who has a PhD from MIT.

“It seems to me that the Pakistan Army is playing with fire. It knows that these nuclear weapons are ultimately in the hands of their own people and their own people have been affected by decades of radicalisation. They may claim that they have personnel reliability tests, but I don’t believe that answering questions on a form may indicate his intentions,” he said.

He dismissed Pakistan Interior (Home) Minister Rehman Malik’s recent assertion that the country’s nukes are 200 per cent safe. “Now Rehman Malik must be a genius to have come up with the figure of 200 per cent. How he arrives at that we have no idea, but that is what the Pakistan military wants us to believe and to unquestionably accept that the nuclear weapons have been provided security in Pakistan…which, personally I don’t believe,” he said.

“So to come up with wild figures, I don’t believe there is source of any reassurance to the people of Pakistan or to the thinking people. We have seen the infiltration of radicals into the ranks of the Army. Very recently, a brigadier and four majors have been arrested. And our brigadiers are in charge of missile regiments too. So where things could go, I don’t know.”

He said that the Pakistan establishment is in a “state of denial” in spite of the fact that there have been repeated attacks on the headquarters of the Army and the ISI.

The repeated assertion in Pakistan, he said, is that nuclear weapons have so many layers of security that it would be impossible to penetrate them. “But this is something that the world obviously questions,” he said, adding that the reason is no matter how many technical precautions you take, “ultimately, it is the people who handle the nuclear weapons, just as the people are responsible for the defence of the Army, Air Force and Navy bases”.

He referred to the recent attack on the Pakistan Navy airbase in Mehran, where a handful of people were “so well-informed by the insiders” that they managed to keep defenders at bay for over 18 hours, and destroyed two of Pakistan’s most valuable aircraft.

“So the worry that something similar may happen with the nuclear weapons crosses everybody’s mind… therefore, even if the strategic plans division says everything is fine, that does not reassure everybody.”

He said India and Pakistan “are locked in an arms race”, adding, “Pakistan is building as many nuclear weapons as it can. They have very little utility... they provide a cover under which (there is) yet another spurt of nuclear weapons production.”

An informal information platform for activists and scholars concerned about the dangers of Nuclearisation in South Asia


Scotland's Renewable Energy Project

Scotland could phase out all conventional fossil fuel and nuclear power stations by 2030, maintain a secure electricity supply, and generate revenue from renewable exports, according to new research by one of the world‟s leading energy consultants, Garrad Hassan.

“The Power of Scotland Secured”, (1) published by Friends of the Earth with backing from RSPB and WWF, sets out how Scotland could guarantee security of supply, while decarbonising half its total energy needs by 2030.

Friends of the Earth Scotland Chief Executive Duncan McLaren said: "We already know that renewables can grow to comfortably exceed our electricity demand by 2020. (2) What this report shows is that, contrary to popular myth, the variability of renewable power need not pose a threat to the reliability of our supply in Scotland. The transmission infrastructure required to keep the lights on at times of low renewables output will be easily justified by the value of exports which it will make possible at times of high output. Costs to consumers are unlikely to exceed those in other future scenarios.”

The report discusses the extensive use of electricity for heating, and it is assumed – in line with existing Scottish government targets - that just 11% of heat demand will be met from renewable sources by 2020, increasing to 40% by 2030. Using electric heat pumps to contribute to the renewable heat target would increase Scottish gross electricity consumption in 2030 by about 14% and would cut carbon emissions from heat by up to 60%. Heat pumps for heating can also be used to help smooth out demand thus helping manage daily peak demand. Given improved levels of insulation in line with energy saving targets, in winter there could be at least several hundred megawatts of deferrable electric heating demand in Scottish homes. However, unlike UK Government proposals which foresee the total electrification of heat by 2030 (3) this report discusses the role of anaerobic digestion, which the National Grid company says could provide almost half of UK domestic gas demand, and combined heat and power.

(1) The Power of Scotland Secured, report & summary, December 2010

(2) See for example Nuclear Free Local Authorities Briefing: Scotland‟s electricity needs, can they be met from renewable without recourse to nuclear? July 2010.


(3) See The All Electric Future, NuClear News No.24

Monday, 4 July 2011

Renewable Energy from the Mediterranean

The sea provides waves, marine currents and tides, all of which could produce energy. The saline gradient and the thermal gradient of the sea could also be used. These technologies are still at the experimental stage, although some countries like the UK, Norway, the US, Portugal, Canada and Japan are investing in research in them. Italian researchers have achieved a great deal in these fields and are well known internationally.

ENEA, Ente per le Nuove tecnologie, l'Energia e l'Ambiente (National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and the Environment) is the Italian Government sponsored research and development agency, originally set up to research atomic energy. Ever since the referendum 25 years ago, in which an overwhelming majority of Italians voted to shut down all nuclear power stations, ENEA has focussed on renewables. However, when Berlusconi announced a few years ago that he wanted to build a new fleet of nuclear power stations, ENEA funding was once again diverted away from renewables.

But Berlusconi did not get his own way. More than a million signatures were collected, enough for the people to demand a referendum on new nuclear. Despite all Berlusconi’s efforts to block the referendum, 57% of the Italian people voted and 97% of these voted against any form of new nuclear power.

As soon as the results of the referendum were made public, Vincenzo Artale, physicist and oceanographer for ENEA, called all the main Italian experts in the field of marine energy to come to a workshop in Rome, to discuss the prospects for the development of this energy sector.

“There are problems”, he said, “but 20 years ago the problems for wind turbines looked insurmountable”.

“We’re mapping the coast and the Italian seas with a grant of 500,000 euros from the Ministry of Economic Development. It’s not enough. The government should be investing a lot more,” he said. “Using wave and tidal power, countries like Scotland could produce enough energy for all their needs. In fact Scotland is working on under-sea barriers.”

Interviewer: “And in Italy Professor Artale?”

“The Mediterranean doesn’t have the same tidal energy as the north seas but there are optimum areas for exploiting tidal energy (which, unlike wind, is regular and energetically quantifiable. And waves. The Strait of Messina is a good place. There’s already a prototype turbine with vertical blades. It’s called Kobold (Italian technology, similar to wind turbine blades but planted horizontally deep in the sea, a good place to exploit tidal energy.)”

“A wind turbine blade 10 metres diameter produces the same energy as a sea turbine blade one metre diameter. The Strait of Boniface (between Sardinia and Corsica), the area of sea south of Sicily, a good part of the Terrenian sea, (between Italy, Sardinia and Sicily) the Ligurian sea (between Italy, Corsica and France) and the Strait of Gibraltar, where the Spanish government is installing an Italian prototype, are all good places to exploit marine energy.”

“To transform wave energy into electricity on the other hand, there is now a system called REWEC3 (resonant wave energy converter), a caisson breakwater that protects a port and, at the same time, converts wave energy into electrical power. Otherwise floating snakes that use the undulating oscillations of the sea could be used.”

Interviewer: “Where is this research being carried out in Italy?”

Artale “We at ENEA are providing all our know how, just like the CRN researchers, free to anyone who wants to use it. Then there are proactive universities like the ones in Messina, Reggio Calabria and Naples, but the University of Bologna, Milano and Torino are all involved in this research too. They developed the Kobold prototype, but worldwide there are lots of marine energy patents. Indonesia is developing marine energy.”

“But since our nuclear scientists now have time on their hands and marine energy research is in its infancy, we could really intensify our renewable technology research efforts, focussing on integrated forms of production, with platforms that exploit wind, sun and sea together. Meanwhile the European Community is already announcing funding specifically for marine energy.”

Interviewer “What impact do these technologies have on the environment?”

“The sites need to be assessed very carefully, just as they do for wind turbines and solar voltaics. Obviously we can’t start planting deep sea turbines right near to beaches. But as far as wildlife is concerned these types of technology have very low impact, far less than wind turbines. The REWEC3 caisson breakwaters are places where fish collect.

Eleonora Martini. Onde e Maree: Dal Mediterraneo l’energia rinnovabile del futuro.

Il Manifesto 17 June

translated by Angela Paine

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Revealed: British government's plan to play down Fukushima

Internal emails seen by Guardian show PR campaign was launched to protect UK nuclear plans after tsunami in Japan.

Geological disposal of radioactive waste

PR STUNT - "Geology Seminar"

Friday, 24 June 2011

The best PR stunts are dressed up in expensive suits and paid for by the taxpayer. Monday's "geology seminar" at Whitehaven was a brilliant example of nasty spin from a government who wants new nukes and desperately needs to be seen to have 'solved' the nuclear waste problem.

Some have called for "more debate" but even if Cumbria's geology was perfect rather than leaky there are over 100 reasons why dumping high level nuclear waste in the ground is guaranteed to poison the land and us.

Here are just a few examples:

Repository is designed to be leaky
Rusting of the steel in the dump will create huge amounts of hydrogen which will have to be released undermining the so called "multi- barrier" system meant to protect people from leakage. (issues 14 and 15)

Digging underground will create fast pathways for leaks Rock would inevitably be damaged by digging to create huge caverns. The danger caused by this "excavation damage zone" is not understood. ( issue 27)

New data shows copper will corrode faster than assumed The NDA refer to a wall thickness of 5cm for the copper canisters holding high level wastes. Recent research shows that to achieve durability a wall thickness of one metre would be needed! (issue 39)

Nuclear Explosions in the Repository
The probability and impact of a "criticality" or mini nuclear explosion is not understood. ( issue 79)

NOTE- Issues Register from Nuclear Waste Advisory Associates Summary ( 10 pages)


Commentary (30 pages)


Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Pro Nuclear Bishop


Carlisle Cathedral is built to inspire awe. Last time Marriane went there was Chernobyl Day to ask Bishop Newcome (aka Nuke'm) for a rethink on his outspoken support for new build and a deep nuclear dump in Cumbria. A few supporters of a radiation free lakeland went in to the Cathedral.

When she opened her mouth to deliver a brilliant speech to the Bishop's right hand man, a tiny mouse squeak came out "please give this important letter to the Bishop etc.."

As soon as she got out of the Cathedral her voice was back to normal! Thats not important but what is important is that the Bishop has now replied to her letter saying:

I am not prepared at this stage to withdraw my support for new build and geological disposal.

That Angel of Light sat above Carlisle Cathedral must be laughing his fiery socks off! How many more lives will be snuffed out before The Bishop "withdraws his support" ?

Anti nuclear protestors fight on in India

Jul. 02-15, 2011
Nuclear or broke     by Praful Bidwai

India's obsession with nuclear power is proving extremely damaging. It is time to switch to and participate in the renewables revolution.

ARE Indian diplomats, known for their negotiating skills and sense of timing, losing touch with reality? Going by the proposal Indian negotiators tabled at the just-concluded Bonn intersessional climate talks for including nuclear power as a “green” technology under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), it appears that they are either losing touch or are forced to adopt positions that attract disrespect and ridicule.

The CDM, part of the Kyoto Protocol under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, allocates carbon credits to technologies and processes (for instance, reafforestation, industrial-gas destruction) that, theoretically, avert/reduce greenhouse gas emissions in developing countries. These credits are sold profitably to developed-country governments or corporations, which can use them as a substitute for reducing domestic emissions, as they are obliged to do under the Protocol. The Kyoto Protocol is the world's sole legally binding agreement. But its early implementation phase, called First Commitment Period, runs out next year. Many developed countries are loath to negotiate a second period. The Protocol is on life support.

Apart from failing to recognise this, India's proposal was singularly ill-timed. It coincided with the still-continuing Fukushima disaster entering its fourth month, a serious worsening of the global nuclear industry's crisis, and a huge shift in public opinion against nuclear power. No wonder the proposal earned India the “Fossil of the Day” award given by the Climate Action Network of non-governmental organisations to governments that make outlandish or anti-green proposals.

The precise magnitude of the health and environmental damage from the radiation release from Fukushima is yet to be estimated. But it is indisputably the global nuclear industry's greatest accident, far greater than Chernobyl. At Chernobyl, only one reactor underwent a core meltdown. At Fukushima, three reactors did, and the spent fuel of a total of four reactors (containing even higher quantities of dangerous radionuclides) was exposed. This was equivalent to an estimated 20 Chernobyl-sized cores. The quantities of iodine-131 and caesium-137, just two dangerous isotopes, released from Fukushima are estimated to be of the same order as those released from Chernobyl. The releases of these and a host of other radionuclides continue uncontrolled.

Experts are still struggling to reconstruct the chain of mishaps beginning March 11. Each new or updated evaluation suggests that the disaster is far, far worse than earlier thought. Data released by the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), the station operator, show that the fuel rods in the three reactors started to melt down within hours of the earthquake at 2-46 p.m. By 8 p.m, an uncontrolled meltdown had begun at Reactor 1. Fuel slumped to the bottom of the pressure-vessel. By 9 p.m, temperatures had reached 2,800° Celsius, the fuel rods' melting point. The company admits a meltdown also happened at Reactors 2 and 3.

Among the early culprits identified in the scientific analysis were hydrogen explosions of March 12 and 14, which seriously damaged the cores and reactor structures. These are the very events which Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) Secretary Srikumar Banerjee and Nuclear Power Corporation Chairman S.K. Jain dismissed as “purely chemical reactions” not signifying a nuclear emergency or even an “event”.

Fukushima has precipitated the closure of as many as 37 of Japan's 54 nuclear reactors, six of them probably for good. Yet more reactors are likely to be shut down for mandatory annual maintenance, and local authorities are unlikely to permit their early restarting. Japan is reviewing its energy policy and will almost certainly phase out nuclear power. Germany, Switzerland and Italy are opting out. Italy's referendum showed that 95 per cent of people opposeed atomic power.

Even in France, nuclear power's most ardent advocate, 62 per cent of people recently polled wanted a nuclear phase-out, and 15 per cent immediate decommissioning. France, for all its advocacy, has only one reactor under construction; it is in deep trouble. The near-bankrupt nuclear company Areva's CEO, Anne Lauvergeon (“Atomic Anne”), has just been sacked, not least because of the fiasco involving the European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) in Finland and the exorbitant costs and multiple failures of Areva's ventures in Europe, Africa and Japan. With this, says The Economist, “the future of France's nuclear-energy industry just became more uncertain”. Yet, India is planning to instal six EPRs at Jaitapur.

Both the United States and the European Union, which is doing a nine-month review of nuclear reactor safety, including “stress tests”, will probably halt the practice of uprating and extending the lifetimes of reactors. In the U.S., no new reactor has been ordered since 1973. And the European nuclear industry has not yet fully recovered from the Chernobyl shock.

Global financial institutions evaluating Fukushima's impact believe it will lead to the immediate shutdown of old reactors, suspension of new plant approvals, review of reactors in seismically active zones, higher safety and other costs, and re-evaluation of energy policies in all nuclear countries. An HSBC analysis concludes: “Overall, we expect a number of impacts from the public and political backlash against nuclear, which means the focus shifts to renewables.” Standard and Poor's nuclear and clean energy indices are moving divergently. The Swiss investment bank UBS says Fukushima casts doubt on “whether even an advanced economy can master nuclear safety. … We believe the Fukushima accident was the most serious ever for the credibility of nuclear power.”

It will be a miracle if nuclear power survives in the developed world. Before Fukushima, only China and India among developing countries had plans to expand nuclear generation substantially. But China has since imposed a moratorium on further nuclear activity. It has become the world's biggest renewable energy investor. It has 45 gigawatts in wind power, compared with just 10 GW in nuclear. It plans to generate 100 GW in wind and 10 GW in solar-photovoltaics and is already the world leader in solar-thermal.

India alone is playing the boy on the burning deck as far as nuclear power goes. This would carry a fig leaf of credibility if India's nuclear programme were indigenous, big and successful. Alas, it is not. All its reactors are based on imported designs.

Despite annually sinking thousands of crores into the nuclear programme for six decades, India gets only 2.7 per cent of its electricity from nuclear reactors. Its economic, environmental and safety costs are high and rising. The DAE has mismanaged its projects and failed to keep costs under check. Its last 10 reactors were 300 per cent over budget. Its frequent revisions of nuclear generation targets have rendered its energy planning meaningless.

Yet, so insistent is the Manmohan Singh government on forcibly instigating a “nuclear renaissance” that it is ready to violate its own legislation to hand out sweetheart deals to foreign nuclear companies. At stake is the Civil Liability for Nuclear Damages Act, passed last year after a bitter, prolonged debate, during which the government discredited itself by repeatedly trying to doctor the Parliamentary Standing Committee's draft. The law was originally drafted to meet the nuclear industry's demand that only the operator of nuclear facilities be held liable for accidents. But the government, under public pressure, made suppliers, too, liable in case of faulty equipment or design. It is now trying to bypass the Act in respect of Russian-designed Koodankulam reactors to allow a “cost mark-up” to cover additional insurance costs ( The Hindu, June 9). This despicable violation of the very spirit of the Act shows total disdain for Parliament. It must be strongly opposed.

The government confronts yet another unpleasant moment as it moves heaven and earth to be admitted to four plurilateral export-control regimes, which it long termed “cartels” run by “nuclear Ayatollahs”, including the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), the Wassenaar Agreement and the Australia group. This is happening just when the NSG is moving to ban enrichment and reprocessing technology (ENR) transfer to countries that have not signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). India claims this breaches the “clean waiver” and “full cooperation” assurances it got in 2008, without ENR exclusion.

Assurances aside, it is totally unrealistic to think ENR can be transferred to any country today, regardless of NPT membership. The U.S. made it clear that it would not sell this to India. India's exertions on this issue, then, are about symbolic recognition as a “responsible” nuclear weapons-state – a contradiction in terms. On nuclear matters, India has always placed an irrational premium on symbols and demanded equal treatment within a regime it long described as “Atomic Apartheid”.

However, a more important, substantial and worthy battle must be fought – working for total global nuclear disarmament. India would gain immensely in global prestige and credibility if it invested in the liability legislation a small fraction of the energies it put into the U.S.-India nuclear deal and in deceiving the public. Equally handsome gains are to be made by participating in and leading the Renewables (Energy) Revolution that is now under way. Both entail abandoning our nuclear obsession.


An informal information platform for activists and scholars concerned about the dangers of Nuclearisation in South Asia


DISCLAIMER: Opinions expressed in materials carried in the posts do not necessarily reflect the views of SAAN compilers.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011





Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Nuclear power is not necessary, not safe, not sustainable

The catastrophe is still unfolding at Fukushima, but the British government is continuing with its plans for building new nuclear power stations – nuclear new-build. While other countries at least put a moratorium on new nuclear, or even make plans to phase out nuclear energy completely, in Britain it’s as if Fukushima didn’t happen. Like a mantra, government and the nuclear industry keep repeating that Fukushima could not happen in Britain because there are no earthquakes of that magnitude. We heard similar excuses after Chernobyl (1986) and Three Mile Island (1979). But nuclear accidents can and do happen – even in Britain; the disaster at Windscale in 1957 released massive levels of radiation into the atmosphere. If we continue to use and expand nuclear power, there will certainly be more catastrophic accidents, not to mention all the other enormous problems associated with nuclear power production, even when it is working ‘normally’.

Nuclear power is not necessary, not safe, not sustainable

Nuclear power is not necessary. Several studies, from the government's Sustainable Development Commission to Greenpeace and the Centre for Alternative Technology show that Britain can meet its energy needs without nuclear, and reduce carbon emissions at the same time.

Nuclear power is not sustainable. Nuclear power depends on uranium mining, which destroys huge landscapes and local communities living there. Uranium itself is a finite resource, and requires huge amounts of energy to be mined.

Nuclear power is not the answer to climate change. Nuclear power is not as low carbon as the government and the industry want us to believe. In addition, nuclear power is expensive, and takes a long time to build. In short: nuclear power provides too few carbon reductions, too late, and will divert investment from renewable, genuinely low-carbon forms of energy production.

Nuclear power is not safe. Accidents such as at Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima show the potentially catastrophic consequences of nuclear power. Numerous smaller accidents and incidents also happen at power stations in Britain: at Windscale, Bradwell, Sizewell, and others.

Nuclear power is a threat to our civil liberties. Because nuclear power stations are potential military or terrorist targets, they pose a threat to our civil liberties. The nuclear police have special powers, and everyone approaching a nuclear power station can be seen as a potential threat.

For more details, see our website at http://stopnewnuclear.org.uk/
We can stop new nuclear

The government and the nuclear industry want us to believe that nuclear new-build in Britain is a done deal. They want to discourage us from protesting – the message they want us to swallow is clear: opposition is futile, and we will be going ahead anyway!

However, that couldn't be further from the truth. Yes, the government has introduced a framework which effectively will subsidise new nuclear at our expense – as electricity consumers and taxpayers. Yes, the government has effectively deprived local communities from having a say in the planning process for new nuclear and other major infrastructure projects thus dumping a crucial cornerstone of local democracy.

But nuclear new-build in Britain is already behind schedule and has faced legal and other setbacks. Public concern is mounting following the Fukushima disaster. If we can stop the building at Hinkley, we can stop the whole process. Now is the time to mobilise and take action.

New-nuclear in Britain is far from being a done deal, and we can still stop it!

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Campaigners against nuclear power says an accident like that seen at the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan could effect Bristol.


Pickles overrules council on nuclear waste

The communities secretary, Eric Pickles, has approved plans to bury 250,000 tonnes of radioactive waste at the East Northants landfill site near Peterborough. The plan was refused by Northamptonshire county council but Pickles upheld the appeal by hazardous waste disposal company Augean. The move was met with outrage among people living in Northamptonshire. In a local poll, 98% of residents voted against dumping the waste. Campaigners Kings Cliffe Waste Watchers said: "In overturning the decision of the county council, and the wishes of all local government organs, he [Ed Pickles] has hardly demonstrated the level of commitment expected from one who is trying to steer localism". The department for communities and local government defended the move. "This is an existing landfill site which handles hazardous waste," it said. "Having considered all the evidence and representations, the minister has accepted the expert planning advice that granting a temporary planning permission for additional waste would not be harmful to the local community."

Guardian Professional, Thursday 26 May 2011 15.07 BST