Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Rear Admiral Scarce joins the South Australian pro nuclear clique

Let’s talk nuclear, says ex-governor Kevin Scarce THE AUSTRALIAN  Verity Edwards DECEMBER 13, 2014 AFTER seven years of political silence in his role as governor of South 

AFTER seven years of political silence in his role as governor of South Australia, Kevin Scarce yesterday finally spoke out to say the state should consider developing a nuclear industry to compensate for a downturn in manufacturing……….http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/state-politics/lets-talk-nuclear-says-ex-governor-kevin-scarce/story-e6frgczx-1227154468047
South-Aust-pro-nuke

December 13, 2014 Posted by | politics, South Australia | Leave a comment

South Australia’s innovative solar powered farm Sundrop goes from strength to strength

Sundrop gets $100m injection from KKR to grow tomatoes in SA desert http://www.theage.com.au/business/sundrop-gets-100m-injection-from-kkr-to-grow-tomatoes-in-sa-desert-20141204-1208fm.html December 4, 2014  Simon Evans

sundrop-farms-David-Pratt

Sundrop Farms has received a capital injection from private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts to aggressively expand its operations, which grow tomatoes on desert land north of Port Augusta in South Australia using solar thermal energy and desalination. Continue reading

December 5, 2014 Posted by | solar, South Australia | Leave a comment

Family First Senator Bob Day pushing for nuclear submarines for Australia

Poor South Australia!   I don’t know what it is about South Australia.  Such a beautiful State,with an amazing and interesting history.

And – it’ s the State that can truly boast of success in renewable energy.

South-Australia-nuclearUnfortunately, South Australia is also saddled with that  white elephant – the uranium industry.

It is also the hub of pro-nuclear promotion. There are  the nuclear propagandists like Barry Brook, the universities infiltrated by pro nuclear proponents like Prof Simons, and the pro nuke business groups – all promoted by BHP. (Below Adelaide pro nuke promoters of nuclear power)

South-Australians-for-nukes

Now we have Senator Bob Day urging the government to develop nuclear submarines, as a recent Family First media release (3/12/14)revealed

December 3, 2014 Posted by | Christina reviews, politics, South Australia | Leave a comment

In brief: how Maralinga nuclear bomb caused illness and environmental destruction

Secret Outback nuclear testing site handed back to traditional land owners 50 years after British did HUNDREDS of nuclear tests causing fatal radiation poisoning

  • The British nuclear testing site in outback Australia has been returned to its Aboriginal owners
  • Seven atomic bombs were detonated on ‘Section 400′ in the 1950s
  • There were also about 600 smaller nuclear tests on the area 
  • The land traditionally belonged to the Maralinga-Tjarutja community
  • Britain’s nuclear tests in Australia caused widespread radiation poisoning
  • Aborigines and Australian and UK soldiers suffered disease and death
  • Radioactive fallout in remote Australia was three time greater than predicted
  • Australia spent $100 million cleaning up the traditional lands
  • The government held on to the 1782sq km testing range until this week

By CANDACE SUTTON FOR DAILY MAIL AUSTRALIA and AAP, 6 November 2014……………………Hundreds of nuclear trials were carried out. Britain dropped twelve nuclear bombs at Maralinga, and then went on to test nuclear warheads.

Maralinga-worker-1950s

Although many Aboriginal people were forcibly removed from their land, more than a thousand were directly affected.

The widespread radioactive fallout of the bombs across the environment, which the local Aboriginal people called ‘puyu’ or ‘black mist’, caused disease and death……..http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2822906/Secret-nuclear-testing-site-Australian-outback-known-Section-400-finally-handed-Aboriginal-traditional-land-owners-50-years-British-dropped-atomic-bombs-causing-radiation-poisoning-death.html

November 8, 2014 Posted by | aboriginal issues, history, South Australia, weapons and war | Leave a comment

South Australia’s largest wind farm now fully operational

Map-South-Australia-wind“This plant confirms South Australia’s commitment to being the nation’s leader when it comes to providing efficient renewable wind energy programs. It is a key platform in our plan for renewable energy to supply 50 per cent of the state’s annual power by 2025,”

South Australia’s 270MW Snowtown takes wind energy to new highs http://reneweconomy.com.au/2014/south-australias-270mw-snowtown-takes-wind-energy-to-new-highs-43971 B on 3 November 2014

South Australia’s largest wind farm – and Australia’s second largest – is now fully operational, after the launch on the weekend of phase 2 of the massive Snowtown Wind Farm development by New Zealand gentailer Trustpower. The plant will mean that 40 per cent of the state’s electricity needs will now come from wind and solar.

Continue reading

November 8, 2014 Posted by | South Australia, wind | Leave a comment

Project to document the health effects from atomic bomb testing in South Australia

Uranium the Silent Killer By Hilary Tyler

    http://www.pozible.com/project/187985   The story of the project   At the ANFA (Australia ANFANuclear Free Alliance) meeting in Oct 2014 Indigenous Elders called for documentation of the health effects from the Maralinga and other atomic bomb tests in the 1950’s and 1960’s.   See https://ausnukefreealliance.wordpress.com for the meeting statement.

First Nations people along with the rest of the population from the southern regions of Australia were subject to horrific fallout from atomic testing carried out in these remote areas.
Permission was never sort from the Aboriginal nations.
“Just remember that the fallout at Maralinga affected the whole lot of us. Black, white, brindle; we all breathe the same air, and we’re all being affected in various ways, even though that happened a long time ago. It’s still around.” Sue Coleman-Haseldine (Kokatha Mula – Ceduna)
From 1952 to 1963 atomic testing covered vast areas of South Australia including Maralinga and Emu Fields test sites.
In November 2014 there will be a 3 week road trip to archive the stories of the people from Arabuna, Walitina, Ceduna, and Yalata country to produce film, audio and digital documentaries. We will begin a data base of the families affected, the geographical distributions of fall out and detrimental health repercussions of these unconsented tests.

The project will meet with people and family members who remained in the vicinity of the testing who were exposed to the immediate effects of radiological poison; people who were transmigrated from their homelands under duress to missions including Yalata in the south west of the state and people who suffer intergenerational impacts first hand at the expense of the atomic tests.

Nuclear weapons are the most destructive, inhumane and indiscriminate weapons ever created. Both in the scale of the devastation they cause, and in their uniquely persistent, spreading, genetically damaging radioactive fallout, they are unlike any other weapons.

For more information on nuclear weapons, including an article on Yami Lester, one of the survivors of the nuclear tests in South Australia, see http://www.icanw.org/au/

Many Aboriginal people in South Australia still rely on bush foods – plants and animals sourced from land that still is contaminated. The possibility of bioaccumulation is very real. Certainly the stories of early death from cancer, thyroid disease and congenital deformities are continuing.

“I’ve lost a lot of my family members through early death – and a lot of it was through cancer, and I do blame the Maralinga fallout.”
Aunty Martha – Arabana (Lake Eyre) Contact us at:  uraniumthesilentkiller@gmail.com

November 6, 2014 Posted by | aboriginal issues, ACTION, health, South Australia, weapons and war | Leave a comment

No recognition, no compensation, for Aborigines made sick by Maralinga nuclear bomb tests

Backgrounder: Why was Maralinga used for secret nuclear tests?SBS News 5 Nov 14  “…….

Radiation-Warning1What happened to the people who lived there?

The nuclear testings lead to widespread dispersion of radioactive material in the local environment. The Anangu Aboriginal people who lived the area called it “puyu” or “black mist”.

UK servicemen, Australian soldiers and civilians, including Indigenous people, were all exposed to radiation. Illnesses reportedly included cancer, blood diseases, eye problems, skin rashes, blindness, vomitting, which are all symptoms of radioactive poisoning.

Between 1953 and 1957, two nuclear devices were detonated at Emu and seven at Maralinga, the Department of Industry reported. According to the Australian Radiationn Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) these “major trials” have largely decayed and are “no longer a significant health risk” as these nuclear devices were conducted at higher altitudes (from balloons).

However, the biggest cause of contamination was from “minor trials”, which were weapons development trials that investigated the performance of various components of a nuclear device. Although minor trials didn’t involve nuclear explosions, they did contain radioactive material.

Since contamination remains on or close to the ground surface, there is a significant health risk for locals. Three sites, Taranaki, TM100/101 (TMs), and Wewak remained highly contaminated with plutonium 40 years later……..

Were victims compensated by the British government?

Aboriginal people exposed to British nuclear tests in South Australia during the 1950s are being told they have no hope of compensation. British firm Hickman and Rose had hoped to represent more than 150 civilians, if a huge class action by 1,000 British veterans had succeeded.

But the class action was blocked – the UK Supreme Court ruling that 60 years after the event their claims were too late, the causes of their illnesses apparently unprovable. (Read the full judgment here)

The Australian Greens’ nuclear spokesman Scott Ludlam said the dangers of radiation are well known and it’s unfair to ask Aboriginal people with scant medical records to prove a direct link between exposure to fallout and subsequent sickness.

“The British courts have blocked the application from Defence personnel and Aboriginal people in central Australia by saying you can’t prove those radiations exposures are what caused your illness,” he said. “Now, we know that ionising radiation is harmful for health – we know that for a fact. The right thing for the British Government to do is make an Act of Grace payment to the people who they injured in their nuclear weapons tests.”

In response, UK Defence Personnel Welfare and Veterans Minister of State Mark Francois said: “[The] Ministry of Defence’s position with respect to paying compensation is unchanged. I am sorry to have to send a disappointing reply, but I hope I have explained the reasons for doing so.”……http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2014/11/05/backgrounder-why-was-maralinga-used-secret-nuclear-tests

November 6, 2014 Posted by | aboriginal issues, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, South Australia, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Part of Defence Department’s Woomera Prohibited Area returned to Aborigines

Map-MaralingaDefence force releases last Maralinga ancestral lands to traditional owners  theguardian.com, Wednesday 5 November 2014

Former weapons testing range at Maralinga in outback South Australia is returned to Maralinga Tjarutja people Traditional owners finally have full access to their homelands at Maralinga after the defence force gave up its weapons testing range on Wednesday. Maralinga, in the South Australian outback, was the site of British atomic bomb testing from 1955 to 1963 and was contaminated by nuclear waste.

The federal government formally acknowledged the excision of an area of the Maralinga Tjarutja lands from the defence department’s Woomera Prohibited Area in a ceremony at Maralinga Village on Wednesday…….http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2014/nov/05/defence-force-releases-last-maralinga-ancestral-lands-to-traditional-owners

November 6, 2014 Posted by | aboriginal issues, South Australia | Leave a comment

Maralinga nuclear test site returned to Aborigines, though still some contamination there

Maralinga signBritish Nuclear Test Site Returned To Aborigines, Yahoo News UK 5 Nov 14 A former British nuclear test site in the depths of the Australian outback has finally been handed back to its Aboriginal owners after more than half a century.

Codenamed Section 400, the secret Cold War atomic weapons testing base was used in the 1950s and 60s and covered 1,782 square kilometres (688 square miles) of remote South Australia.

Now the Australian Government has formally given the site at Maralinga back to its traditional owners, the Maralinga Tjarutja, who hope to turn it into a tourism attraction.

Maralinga Tjarutja general manager Richard Preece says the community is establishing a business to take visitors round the nuclear test sites.

“We’re going to set up bus tours so people can be taken round by Robin (the local caretaker), who is a walking encyclopaedia of Maralinga,” he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

He added the area still had some contamination but would be safe for visitors if they were escorted………https://uk.news.yahoo.com/british-nuclear-test-returned-aborigines-130655845.html#vPKBkL8

November 6, 2014 Posted by | aboriginal issues, South Australia, weapons and war | Leave a comment

BHP is firm on mothballing Olympic Dam uranium mine expansion

BHP offers little hope of revisiting Olympic Dam expansion The global miner shelved plans for the multi-billion-dollar expansion in 2012 after a year-long study.  MineWeb 03 Nov 2014 SYDNEY (REUTERS) -  Expansion by BHP Billiton’s giant Olympic Dam mine in Australia, once considered among its prized growth assets, is off the agenda due to low metals prices and productivity inefficiencies, the company said on Friday.

BHP shelved plans for a multi-billion-dollar expansion of the copper, gold and uranium mine in 2012 after a year-long study, citing a need to reign in spending as the Australian mining boom started to fade.

Since then business leaders and politicians, including Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, have implored BHP to reconsider its decision, hoping to alleviate job losses caused by the exit of car manufacturing inAustralia.

But BHP has stood firm and on Friday reiterated its mothballing of expansion plans for Olympic Dam. http://www.mineweb.com/mineweb/content/en/mineweb-gold-news?oid=258553&sn=Detail

November 4, 2014 Posted by | business, South Australia, uranium | Leave a comment

Wind power surging ahead in South Australia

Wind power surge as SA govt flicks switch http://www.skynews.com.au/news/top-stories/2014/11/02/wind-power-surge-as-sa-govt-flicks-switch.html 2 November 2014 South Australia Premier Jay Weatherill and Environment Minister Ian Hunter have switched on the second stage of the Snowtown wind farm project, tripling its capacity.

The $450 million addition of 90 turbines increases the farm’s capacity from Sunday by 1350 gigawatt hours a year, enough to power 230,000 homes.

The wind farm in the state’s mid-north is now the largest in the state, the government says.

The Premier has also warned projects such as the Snowtown wind farm are at risk if the federal government scaled back the Renewable Energy Target.

Mr Weatherill told media the project is creating ‘a new future for this region in South Australia’, but a scaling back of the RET would see large scale renewable initiatives become unviable.

November 4, 2014 Posted by | South Australia, wind | 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

South Australia’s leading renewable energy system

Parkinson-Report-Graph of the Day: Australia’s renewable energy generation, REneweconomy, By  on 20 October 2014 “…………As RenewEconomy has noted on many occasions, South Australia has the highest level of variable renewable energy in Australia – quite possibly the world (in major economies), with an average 43 per cent wind generation in July, and days in September when wind and solar provided all of the state’s electricity demand, and more.

The AEMO study says that the SA power system can operate securely and reliably with a high percentage of wind and PV generation, including in situations where wind generation comprises more than 100 per cent of SA demand, as long as one of the following two key factors apply:

a) The Heywood Interconnector linking SA and Victoria is operational.

b)  Sufficient synchronous generation is connected and operating on the SA power system.

The AEMO study notes that South Australia already has the highest wind and PV generator penetration of any NEM region. As the graph shows, it has 1,470 MW of installed wind generation and 540 MW of PV generation. This represents about 50 per cent and 17 per cent of total installed wind and PV capacity in the NEM respectively.

In terms of residential rooftop PV installations, SA leads the NEM with a penetration rate of almost one in four of all rooftops. And the rate of penetration is likely to grow: the AEMO says that under favourable market and policy scenarios, it is projected that at least 1,000 MW of wind and 500 MW of PV capacity will be added in SA by 2020 – doubling the amount of rooftop solar, and lifting the amount of wind by two-thirds.

The AEMO notes that these developments are a “benefit” to both SA and the NEM. But it also underlines the importance of a strong interconnector with the rest of the NEM – for obvious reasons. Without it, the state would have issues with the required controls to ensure system security. (The report does not address this issue, but Germany is rolling out battery technologies that assume the role of “synchronous” generators and could usurp the primacy of fossil fuel generation. AEMO says the chance of a disconnection is so low is it rated as a “non-credible” event – but just in case ….http://reneweconomy.com.au/2014/graph-of-the-day-australias-renewable-energy-generation-88841

October 21, 2014 Posted by | energy, South Australia | Leave a comment

A backward move for Australia’s environment: Federal govt abandons regulation to South Australia’s control

highly-recommendedSouth Australia’s Assessment Bilateral Agreement with the Commonwealth is finalised

As part of its broadly criticised ‘One Stop Shop’ agenda the Federal Government has announced that its Assessment Bilateral Agreement with South Australia has been finalised and signed by both parties.  The Bilateral Agreement will come into force 30 days after execution, on or about 24 October.

The Agreement allows the Commonwealth to now rely on South Australian environmental impact assessment processes in assessing ‘matters of national environmental significance’ defined under the Federal Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.  This change has been widely criticised.  There is significant doubt as to whether existing State regulations can actually be brought up to meet the standards required under the EPBC Act.  There is also concern about whether the cash-strapped states are likely to make effective champions of our environmental assets when at the same time they are under increasing pressure to jettison environmental safeguards in order to pump through development and replenish state coffers.

http://www.environment.gov.au/topics/environment-protection/environment-assessments/bilateral-agreements/sa

October 18, 2014 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, environment, politics, South Australia | Leave a comment

South Australia’s remarkably high renewable energy production

Map-South-Australia-windParkinson-Report-South Australia Achieves 100% Renewable Energy For A Whole Working Day Clean Technica October 13th, 2014 by Giles Parkinson (good graphs)_ RenewEconomy. There have been several instances in recent months when wind energy has accounted for all, or nearly all, electricity demand in South Australia. Last Tuesday, however, set a new benchmark – the combination of wind energy and rooftop solar provided more than 100 per cent of the state’s electricity needs, for a whole working day between 9.30am and 6pm.

The data comes from Hugh Saddler, at consultants Pitt & Sherry, and is part of his monthly overview of electricity market, emissions and pricing trends in Australia.

Saddler notes there were several periods in South Australia from Saturday September 27, and over the following days, when wind generation was greater than total state NEM demand. (South Australia has nearly half the country’s wind capacity with around 1.5GW of wind energy).

It occurred briefly on Saturday afternoon, for much of Sunday, and again, most strikingly, between about 9.30am and 6.00pm on Tuesday, September 30, a normal working day.

In reality, renewables contributed well over 100 per cent because they were generating and consuming their own electricity from rooftop solar – the state has 550MW of rooftop solar, with nearly one in four houses with rooftop modules.

That meant that “true” demand by consumers on that day, i.e. the amount of electricity being used by consumers, including rooftop solar, was in fact considerably higher than NEM demand — up to 20 per cent according to the Australian Photovoltaic Institute — because of the contribution of rooftop PV to total electricity supply…….

Interestingly, the South Australia government has already exceeded its target of generating 33 per cent of the state’s electricity needs from renewables (over a full year), and has now set a 50 per cent target by 2025. In reality, it will likely reach that mark well before that, particularly if the Ceres wind farm and the Hornsdale wind farm are built. It could even be the first mainland state towards 100 per cent renewables over the whole year.

Considerable volumes of electricity were exported to Victoria. “In simple arithmetic terms, though not of course in how the grid actually operated, the state’s electricity supply was 100 per cent renewable while coal and gas-fired electricity was exported,” he says…..http://cleantechnica.com/2014/10/13/s-australia-achieves-100-renewable-energy-whole-working-day/

October 15, 2014 Posted by | energy, South Australia | Leave a comment

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