Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Australia’s role in saving the planet’s environment – theme for October 14

Well, Australia seems to be doing not too well in environmental matters, (nor in most others, at present).   The sooner we get rid of the Abbott government, the better.

I’ve tried to be non political – because our land, our water, our air, our planet – these matters are beyond party politics.  That is something that some Liberals are now realising.

The mass Climate Action Marches on September 21st showed that Australians care. On  the local level, so many Australians, including Liberals, are working to conserve the wildlife, our water and land,  and many are members of groups like Landcare, Australian Koala Foundation, and the most prominent activist groups – Australian Conservation Foundation, Friends of the Earth, and Beyond Nuclear.

Australia’s environmentalists  do have quite a proud history of achievement in environmental goals, really, a remarkable record in awakening public opinion and in slowing down polluting industries.  It is thanks to the work of Australians like Dr Helen Caldicott that the atmospheric nuclear bomb tests in the Pacific were stopped. It is thanks to the anti-nuclear movement that Australia does not have the nightmare of nuclear power.

Australians in general do have a strong appreciation of nature.  They also seem to be showing a keen appreciation of the economic and environmental benefits of clean energy. The September Climate March, is, I believe, the start of a stronger movement for public awareness of our ecological peril, and for action for positive change.

Australia-future-1

September 28, 2014 Posted by | Christina themes | Leave a comment

Toxic spill report critical for Ranger uranium mine

text-radiationKirsten Blair, 22 Oct 14  Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation was disappointed to learn that Ministers Ian MacFarlane and Willem Westra van Holthe had released a summary report of the investigation into the collapse of a leach tank at the Ranger uranium mine within the bounds of Kakadu National Park late last year without consulting all members of the investigation taskforce.

Gundjeihmi, which represents the Mirarr Traditional Owners of the Ranger mine site, has a position on the taskforce which was established to investigate last year’s radiological accident but was not informed of the intention to release the report yesterday.

Ranger-3Justin O’Brien CEO of Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation said “We are bitterly disappointed that the investigation taskforce process has broken down, not for any want of trying on our part. It is critical that the recommendations of this report are fully implemented with highest priority given to a comprehensive review of the regulatory framework at Ranger, a point which the ministers have acknowledged but up to this point have not committed to act on.

“The tank collapse which sent over a million litres of radioactive acid spilling across the mine site was yet another example of the poor management and failed systems at Ranger. For Traditional Owners to gain have any confidence in the capacity of the Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) and the regulators to manage this mine the recommendations of this report must be acted on swiftly and completely.

“ERA wants to expand the Ranger mine underground. Without a comprehensive regulatory review and implementation of the remaining recommendations it would be ludicrous for the Federal Government to even consider such a proposal.” Mr O’Brien concluded

October 23, 2014 Posted by | Northern Territory, safety, uranium | Leave a comment

Labor says NO to 40% reduction in Renewable Energy target

see-this.wayVIDEO: Labor rejects forty per cent reduction in RET Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Broadcast: 22/10/2014

Reporter: Tom Iggulden

A government proposal to substantially reduce the Renewable Energy Target has been rejected by the Labor Party. http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2014/s4112677.htm

October 23, 2014 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Fukushima nuclear radiation – 4 times as much cesium-137 as was released from Chernobyl

Cesium-137Gov’t report reveals Fukushima radioactive release much larger than Chernobyl — Japan reactors could have emitted nearly four times as much cesium-137 http://enenews.com/govt-report-reveals-fukushima-radioactive-release-larger-chernobyl-japan-reactors-could-emitted-four-times-cesium-137?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ENENews+%28Energy+News%29

Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, funded by the Korean government, July 2014:
  • The Fukushima accident [led to a] release of huge radioactivity
  • It is reported… 4 times more radioactivity was released to the sea than to the atmosphere
  • Best-estimate source term of 137Cs… released into the atmosphere, is about 4%
  • Best-estimate release fraction of the 137Cs inventory that flowed into the sea…about 16%
  • Of the 4% inventory of 137Cs released into the atmosphere, only 0.8% was deposited in the Japanese land and the other 3.2% was transported to the sea or other areas
  • The inventory… available for release in the units 1-3… the time of accident [was] 7.6 – 8.2 x 10^17 [760 - 820 quadrillion] Bq for 137Cs
  • Because of the geographic location of the nuclear power plant — at the beach of the Pacific Ocean… more than 80% of the radioactivity released from the crippled reactors flowed into the sea

To determine the best estimate of the total 137Cs that was released into the environment from Fukushima, the 137Cs release fraction (4% atmosphere, 16% ocean) is multiplied by the 137Cs inventory for the 3 melted reactor cores (760 to 820 quadrillion Bq):

  • Ocean Release of 137Cs from Fukushima: 121.6 to 131.2 quadrillion Bq (16% x 760 to 820 quadrillion Bq)
  • Atmospheric Release of 137Cs from Fukushima: 30.4 to 32.8 quadrillion Bq (4% x 760 to 820 quadrillion Bq)
  • Total Release of 137Cs into the Environment from Fukushima: 152 to 164 quadrillion Bq
  • Total Release of 137Cs into the Environment from Chernobyl: 70 to 85 quadrillion Bq

However, the 137Cs inventory of 760 to 820 quadrillion Bq used by the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute is significantly lower than the U.S. Department of Energy calculated:

  • DOE’s Total 137Cs Inventory in Reactors 1-3: 1.3E+18 Bq (1,300 quadrillion Bq)
  • Ocean 137Cs Release from Fukushima: 208 quadrillion Bq (16% x 1,300 quadrillion)
  • Atmospheric 137Cs Release from Fukushima: 52 quadrillion Bq (4% x 1,300 quadrillion)
  • Total 137Cs Release into the Environment from Fukushima: 260 quadrillion Bq
  • Total 137Cs Release into the Environment from Chernobyl: 70 to 85 quadrillion Bq

See also: Fukushima has released 80 Quadrillion Bq of cesium-137 — “The radioactive plume itself has actually arrived… it’s already here” on west coast of N. America (AUDIO)

October 23, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Report on extraordinary level of sickness and death among Fukushima evacuees

Radiation-Warning1“Never heard of so much sickness & death in such a short period” says Fukushima evacuee — Writes about strange diseases in young people, deadly tumors and hemorrhages, pets missing hair, child losing all their fingernails, polydactyl baby — Doctor: My friends are dying of cancer, one after another http://enenews.com/never-heard-sickness-death-short-period-fukushima-evacuee-writes-about-strange-diseases-young-people-deadly-tumors-hemorrhages-pets-missing-hair-child-losing-all-fingernails-polydactyl-baby?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ENENews+%28Energy+News%29

Excerpts from message by a Fukushima evacuee, translated by World Network for Saving Children from Radiation
, Oct. 15, 2014: Mrs. Junko Honda… was a successful beauty salon owner who ran two salons… She recently [compiled the] unusual symptoms that she had heard about over the past three years… whose veracity she has been able to ascertain.

“I had never heard of so much sickness and death in such a short period of time” -Honda

Babies, Children, Young Adults
Sep ’11: Child… had nosebleeds very often… many others at school who had nose bleeding
Jun ’12: Child had headaches and nausea since the accident
Apr ’13: Friend of an evacuee gave birth to a polydactyl child [birth defect, extra fingers/toes]
Jul ’13: Younger friend of an evacuee… got ill with cancer
Mar ’14: Relative [in] middle school… got ill with rheumatism [and] medicine doesn’t work

Lymph, Thymus, Thyroid Gland Problems
Apr ’11: I felt strange feeling in my lymph nodes… salon staff also felt the same
Sep ’11: My friend’s father died with a tumor in the lymph glands
Sep ’11: Gynecologist mentioned there was an increase of lymph tumors
Jan ’13: Child of an evacuee [had] unsubsidized thyroid exam… thymus gland was swollen
Jan ’13: Several children… from Fukushima [also diagnosed with swollen] thymus gland
Sep ’13: Child of an evacuee had an unsubsidized thyroid examination… they found many cysts
Oct ’13: Friend, an evacuee age 35, developed thyroid cancer
Mar ’14: Friend of an evacuee, in her 30s, had thyroid surgery

Unusual Skin, Hair, Nail Problems
Apr ’11: Hair of our pets [dog & cat] become uneven because of hair loss to an unusual degree
Apr ’11: Reddish eczema on my daughter’s face [which] stayed until we evacuated
Sep ’11: Hairdresser friend and her sister have suffered dermatologic eczema since the accident
Jun ’12: [Child's mother] experienced hair loss and… had sparser hair
Jun ’12: All the fingernails of a child evacuee from Sugakawa fell off after the accident

Adults Under Retirement Age
Sep ’11: Customer in her 40s got ill with a disease that cannot renew blood
Sep ’11: Woman in her 30s died from cardiac arrest
Aug ’12: My relative died suddenly of subarachnoid hemorrhage… in his 30s
Dec ’12: Resident in his 30s developed a tumor
Dec ’12: Resident in her 40s developed a tumor and died
Jan ’13: Doctor [said] his friends have been dying with cancer one after another
Mar ’13: Man in his 30s died suddenly
Mar ’13: 5 customers… had funerals of close family in very short period… 3 were in their 50s
Oct ’13: Male friend who was doing decontamination work died suddenly

See Video: ‘Hell of Fukushima in the immediate vicinity of the children’ (only in Japanese)

October 23, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Jim Green responds to critics on Australia’s export of uranium to India

India-uranium1Jim Green: Safeguarding uranium exports Responding to my OnLine Opinion article about inadequate safeguards provisions in the Australia−India uranium sales agreement, Geoff Russell begins: “Jim Green’s recent OnLine Opinion piece about Australia’s export of uranium to India reports on concerns about “safeguards” by the Australian Safeguards and Non-Proliferation Office (ANSO). This Government office is concerned with nuclear safety.”

In fact, the safeguards office is concerned with safeguards − preventing the diversion of nuclear materials for weapons production − not safety.  ….http://onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=16792

October 23, 2014 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Students’ climate action campaign is having its effect on Australian politics

logo-Aust-Youth-Climate-CoaLouis Klee: Students put the Coalition on notice over climate change
Climate change hypocrisy has drawn the ire of business leaders and former Liberal party leaders.

Since the moment of his ascendency to office, Prime Minister Tony Abbott has been determined to keep climate change off the national agenda. He was carried to victory on his pledge to repeal Australia’s carbon pricing, his first act as Prime Minister was to abolish the Climate Commission, he has vowed to leave aside climate change in G20 talks and he was conspicuously absent at the New York climate summit to the opprobrium of those present.

Yet, Mr Abbott has, in the past week, been drawn into a confrontation over the future of the fossil fuel industry in Australia, declaring: “Coal is good for humanity.” The fascinating thing is that this debate – one that is fast becoming a “bellwether moment in Australia,” as Greens leader Christine Milne put it – was started by the humble efforts of a grassroots student campaign at the Australian National University……http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/students-put-the-coalition-on-notice-over-climate-change-20141022-119sn7.html

October 23, 2014 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Macquarie Bank invests in uranium

piggy-bank--nuke-sadGoing nuclear: Australia’s Macquarie buys Deutsche uranium book -source By David Sheppard LONDON, Oct 21 (Reuters) - Australian investment bank Macquarie Group has bought Deutsche Bank’s uranium book, a source familiar with the matter said, as the increasingly commodities-focused lender pushes deeper into global energy trading.

The deal includes Deutsche’s long-term trading contracts and stockpiles of low-grade uranium yellowcake, which were valued at the end of last year at around $200 million.

Industry experts say they comprise enough uranium to fuel around 10 average-sized nuclear power plants for 12-18 months………

Trading firms hold uranium stockpiles in warehouses specially licensed to store the fuel, like U.S. conglomerate Honeywell International Inc’s ConverDyn facility in Illinois; Cameco’s Port Hope facility in Ontario; and Areva SA’s facility in Francehttp://www.reuters.com/article/2014/10/22/macquarie-uranium-commodities-idUSL6N0SH3PN20141022

October 23, 2014 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business | Leave a comment

Uranium exploration a concern for New South Wales graziers

Graziers on alert as uranium exploration looms ABC News, By Jacqueline Breen 19 Oct 14 Graziers are watching closely as the state government prepares to grant uranium exploration licenses in the state’s far west.

Last month the government overturned the ban on uranium exploration and invited six companies to apply to explore for deposits near Broken Hill, Cobar and Dubbo.

The state’s Resources and Energy Division has since held a stakeholder meeting in Broken Hill, attended by the local council, New South Wales Farmers and the West Darling Pastoralists’ Association.

Association president Chris Wilhelm says landholders will be the first affected when exploration begins and he wants their rights protected……( Map below shows areas in New South Wales where uranium deposts exist, could be explored for))

map-NSW-uranium-exploration

The ban on uranium mining in New South Wales remains in place. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-10-20/graziers-watch-closely-as-uranium-exploration-looms/5825950

 

October 21, 2014 Posted by | environment, New South Wales, uranium | Leave a comment

South Australian Greens call for transparency on ‘uranium appendices’ for Yorke Peninsula mine

Hillside mine: Greens call for release of ‘uranium appendices’ for Yorke Peninsula open pit, ABC News 19 Oct 14

The Greens are calling for the release of documents relating to uranium deposits at a copper mine approved for South Australia’s Yorke Peninsula.

Earlier this year mining company Rex Minerals submitted a document to the South Australian Government that responded to community concerns about the potential contamination of prime farmland from the Hillside mine.

The Government responded by approving the 2.4-kilometre-long, 1km-deep and 450m-deep open pit near Ardrossan that would extract 2 million tonnes of copper, 1.7 million ounces of gold and 44 million tonnes of iron ore over 15 years.

Some parts of the mining lease proposal documents, however, were deemed “commercial-in-confidence” and withheld from publication.

State Greens leader Mark Parnell has submitted a freedom of information application to view the documents and see how much uranium is at the site.

He said appendices 36 and 37 related to uranium and were being “kept secret”.

“If the company says ‘nothing to worry about’, then they should have nothing to worry about releasing the documents that explain exactly where the radioactive hotspots are,” Mr Parnell said………

secret-Australia

EPA regulation levels to be reduced

South Australian Environment Protection Authority (EPA) regulations take effect at 200ppm – a level that would soon be reduced to 80ppm in line with national guidelines……..http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-10-20/greens-call-for-the-release-of-uranium-appendices-hillside-mine/5826048

October 21, 2014 Posted by | secrets and lies, South Australia, uranium | Leave a comment

Nuclear fusion is NOT clean

nuclear-fusion-pie

 

Dennis Matthews 21 Oct 14,  The whole containment vessel in which the fusion is carried out – so far very briefly and at no net energy output – becomes radioactive due to neutron bombardment, a process called neutron activation.

In addition it has one of the major problems that you have with nuclear fission. The people you train in Schools of Nuclear Science and Engineering can move effortlessly between fusion power and fusion weapons. There are no Schools of Nuclear Weapons Science and Technology but there are lots of Schools of Nuclear (Power) Science and Technology including one here in Australia that recently got restarted after several decades in the wilderness.

October 21, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Gough Whitlam’s exceptional legacy for Indigenous Australians

Gough Whitlam remembered: a true leader for Indigenous Australians, Guardian, 21 Oct 14 
Gough Whitlam was the first prime minister to campaign so openly for Indigenous people and to listen to their concerns For Aboriginal people across the country, Gough Whitlam was our giant among former prime ministers. He was the first leader to campaign so openly for us. During his short term in office he and his government made momentous decisions to include Aboriginal people within the fabric of the nation. Continue reading

October 21, 2014 Posted by | aboriginal issues, history | Leave a comment

Thanks to Tony Abbott, Australia now ranks last on climate change, green imvestment

Abbott-fiddling-global-warm

“Tony Abbott’s international reputation for climate change inaction is growing, to the detriment of Australian businesses who are trying to retain and attract overseas investors,”

Abbott’s Australia ranked dead last on climate, green investment http://reneweconomy.com.au/2014/australia-green-economy-65014By  on 20 October 2014 Australia’s dramatic backwards slide on climate action and low-carbon policy under the federal Coalition is, by now, well documented. Since coming into power, Tony Abbott and his climate-sceptic team have dumped the nation’s world-leading carbon pricing scheme, wound back renewable energy support mechanisms, and taken aim at the Climate Change Authority, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, ARENA and the RET.

But a new international report puts just how far Australia has fallen behind the rest of the world on climate, clean energy and green investment into sharp perspective.

The fourth edition of the Global Green Economy Index (GGEI) was released on Monday, measuring the green economic performance of 60 countries based on four key dimensions: leadership & climate change, efficiency sectors, markets & investment and environment & natural capital.

Embarrassingly enough, Australia’s performance on actions that support clean energies and combat climate change ranks 37th – down from fourth spot in 2012.

But in the Leadership section, Australia comes a resounding last – a result the GGEI report puts down to negative media coverage, “unconstructive behavior” in international forums, and overall poor climate change performance. Continue reading

October 21, 2014 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming | Leave a comment

Life in Fukushima today

see-this.way(PHOTOS)  What life is really like in Japan following the Fukushima nuclear disaster news.com.au OCTOBER 20, 2014  “………“Time had stopped. In the main part of the town the buildings are still collapsed from the earthquake. It’s kind of nuts. It was weird, like a time warp, everything is all overgrown,” she said………e day of the earthquake schools were due to hold graduation ceremonies, with many of the preparations for celebrations still intact.

“They literally evacuated that day and were told they had to get out of town completely and since then they haven’t been able to go back,” she said.

“The kids themselves haven’t been back, adults have gone back on a daily pass to clear their house. Anyone that’s under 15 isn’t able to go on. So it’s pretty tough on them.”……..  160,000 people have been forced from their homes after Japan’s environment ministry labelled 11 municipalities “no-go zones”. They’ve been forced to live in temporary housing while authorities painstakingly decontaminate the area in order for them to return home…….

Fukushima Update’s editor James Corbett, who lives 600 kilometres from the plant and started his website in an attempt to provide information on the disaster, said the situation is still a “huge problem” with no resolution in sight. Continue reading

October 21, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

France’s love affair with nuclear power now waning

plants-downIs France’s Love Affair with Nuclear Over? Oil Price, By Chris Dalby | Sun, 19 October 2014  French President Francois Hollande has promised to limit the growth of the country’s nuclear power, many older reactors have been targeted for decommissioning, and Greenpeace and other environmental groups have been relentless in their anti-nuclear campaigning. But until now, it seemed unlikely that France would ever truly rethink its love affair with nuclear power.

Last week, it did. On Oct. 10, France’s parliament voted to begin moving to undo decades of nuclear growth and to reduce its importance to the country’s energy mix. Continue reading

October 21, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hydro Tasmania soon to release its King Island wind energy feasibility study

wind-energy-globeKing Island’s wind farm fate closes in http://www.themercury.com.au/king-islands-wind-farm-fate-closes-in/story-fnj3twbb-1227095516599 HELEN KEMPTON MERCURY OCTOBER 20, 2014

THE King Island community should know by early next year if their remote Bass Strait home will also become home to the biggest wind farm in the southern hemisphere.

Hydro Tasmania has almost completed a feasibility study into its $2 billion, 200-turbine proposal and is expected to announce early next year if the project will go ahead.

The decision also hinges on the Federal Government not scrapping the Renewable Energy Target. Hydro Tasmania is one of 16 major renewable energy companies who have argued for the retention of the present RET.

The TasWind project is forecast to pump more than $7 million a year into the island economy and provide an estimated $220 million annual revenue boost to the state’s coffers.

Debate over the pros and cons of the proposal has divided the small community and Hydro Tasmania started its feasibility study after 58 per cent of residents indicated they wanted to move on to the assessment stage.

October 21, 2014 Posted by | Tasmania, wind | Leave a comment

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