Lucas Heights medical nuclear reactor is unnecessary, a fig leaf on dirty dangerous nuclear power
In Australia pro nuclear hypocrisy reaches a peak today, as Senator Chris Evans bleats out a whole lot of nauseous spin about expanding the role of ANSTO (Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation) and the Lucas Heights nuclear reactor. His media release is full of sanctimonious blather about the benefits to the sick, Australia having a leading role in the world, and wonderful Synroc ( a waste disposal technology that was discredited decades ago.
There are drawbacks – expense is one, – but these drawbacks can be overcome: research to this end is going on in Canada – scientific teams in Alberta Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Quebec.
The Alberta team was able to produce viable quantities of high-quality technetium-99m using a 19-mega-electron-volt cyclotron, a circular particle accelerator, said Sandy McEwan, a researcher with the University of Alberta and medical director with Alberta Health Services’ Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton, in a news release.
“This means there is now a potentially valid alternative to reactor-produced medical isotopes,” he said. June 1012.
The real problem with medical isotopes such as those produced in Australia, at Lucas Heights, is that this really functions as a fig leaf over nuclear power. The ‘medical’ nuclear reactor is a foot in the door for the nuclear industry. It should be shut down, and replaced by a cyclotron. - Christina Macpherson, 20 Sept 12
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