Australian news, and some related international items

The Emperor’s New Nuclear Spin – May 2011

Pro nuclear propaganda is turning into a joke, and not only in Australia, where it is currently intense.  The Nuclear Establishment is in denial about the seriousness of Fukushima, about the dangers of nuclear waste, about the prohibitive costs of new nuclear plants, and about the collapse of the uranium industry.

With Fukushima news quietly vanishing from the mainstream media (even though that catastrophe continues), the nuclear mafia revert to their old themes –  which now sound more and more like the Emperor’s New Clothes.

May 6, 2011 Posted by | Christina themes | Leave a comment

Martin Ferguson, Rio Tinto – doublespeak on nuclear and uranium

Australia’s Nuclear Heirarchy are twisting themselves in knots as they urgently try to promote nuclear power and uranium mining, while at the same time pretending to look as if they care about Fukushima, the public good,  and the environment.

Today’s news – perfect examples:

Martin Ferguson (who by the way, is also Minister for Tourism – and what a conflict of interest THAT is!) –   anyway – Martin Ferguson still pushes the antique line that Australia can flog off uranium to anybody  – who cares if they use it for weapons or to wreck the environment – not our problem.

Today, Ferguson piously pretends to support renewable energy, and assures us that Australia doesn’t need nuclear – but on the same day, also he champions the use of nuclear power.

Meanwhile as ERA’s Ranger uranium mine turns out to be an investment and economic, (as well as environmental) disaster, ) its ultimate owner, Rio Tinto predicts a nuclear future  for Australia, and ERA struggles on with plans to expand the Ranger mine. – Christina Macpherson

May 6, 2011 Posted by | Christina reviews | Leave a comment

Globally nuclear is failing, Australia needs renewables

Globally, investment is flowing to renewables. The difficulty in delivering a nuclear plant on time and budget is perhaps the reason Areva has diversified its energy portfolio…..

Given Australia has the best solar radiation of any developed country, we are better suited to building commercially available base-load solar thermal and other renewable technologies, which can be completed in two to four years.

If we move now, we can develop the expertise and jobs locally. Delay further, and we’ll be buying clean technologies from overseas…

Best option for Australia is renewable technologies, Herald Sun, Patrick Hearps , May 06, 2011,  JAPAN’S ongoing nuclear crisis has re-ignited debate about Australia jumping on the nuclear power bandwagon. Nuclear proponents continue to support the technology although the full impacts of the Fukushima disaster are unknown….  we should step back and ask whether Australia needs to consider nuclear power.

The answer is a simple “no”. Nuclear power is not necessary to solve Australia’s climate and energy challenges. Continue reading

May 6, 2011 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy | Leave a comment

Martin Ferguson pushes nuclear power

Ferguson rejects call to abandon N-power  Matthew Franklin,   The Australian * May 05,  RESOURCES Minister Martin Ferguson has championed the future of nuclear power, rejecting calls that it be abandoned as an energy source in the wake of earthquake damage to Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant.
Mr Ferguson has also declared that the era of “cheap energy” in Australia is over, urging householders to accept that their demand as consumers of electrical appliances was driving up their power bills…..Ferguson rejects call to abandon N-power | The Australian

May 6, 2011 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, people | Leave a comment

Martin Ferguson pushes uranium industry, but not nuclear

A nuclear Australia is inevitable: Rio chairman, Sydney Morning Herald, Courtney Trenwith, May 6, 2011….The Minister for Resources and Energy. Martin Ferguson, was not persuaded by Mr du Plessis’s argument, saying Australia did not need nuclear power given the country’s abundance of low-cost and reliable alternative energy sources, namely fossil fuel and renewable.

Mr Ferguson said the Fukushima incident had not changed the government’s position on uranium exports. It would continue to support an expansion of uranium mining and the supply of the resource to countries that were signatories to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty…..’Australia’s uranium industry will continue to expand and my immediate priority is ensuring this happens in the proper way.”……

May 6, 2011 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, people, politics | Leave a comment

Shut Ranger uranium mine – it’s losing money anyway

Rio urged to curb uranium mine expansion,ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) By Jano Gibson  May 5, 2011  The Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) has urged Rio Tinto to stop a planned expansion of the Ranger uranium mine in the Northern Territory.Rio Tinto subsidiary Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) runs the uranium mine on a lease inside Kakadu National Park.Production is currently suspended following a record wet season in the Territory and Rio Tinto is holding its annual general meeting in Perth today.ACF spokesman Dave Sweeney says it should use the opportunity to scale back plans for the mine.”Ranger is a leaking, ageing and under-performing mine,” he said.”The mine is currently shut. It is not turning a dollar.”It is losing contaminants into the environment and it is losing money for Rio Tinto and ERA.”
Rio urged to curb uranium mine expansion – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

May 6, 2011 Posted by | business, Northern Territory | Leave a comment

Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) poor uranium investment future

The Sell argument is summed up by RBS Australia, which suggests there remains downside valuation and earnings risk from any further significant rainfall events. As well, a strategic review is likely to conclude the heap leach and Ranger 3 Deeps projects are not viable, which would further impact on valuation and sentiment in RBS’s view.    BA-ML takes a similar view and has stripped both projects from its model.

No Joy For Energy Resources Of Australia, FNArena News – May 04 2011 – ERA proposes increased capex to deal with water issues – Valuations and earnings estimates adjusted lower – Broker opinions and targets remain divided, By Chris Shaw Continue reading

May 6, 2011 Posted by | business, Northern Territory | Leave a comment

Rio Tinto shareholders not convinced on nuclear future

Tom Albanese, Rio’s chiefexecutive, said uranium from the Ranger mine had been exported to Japan, although commercial confidence prevented him from confirming whether it was being used at Fukushima…

”Even before the Fukushima disaster, investors and insurers in the US, for example, could not be coaxed to back nuclear power.” – Scott Ludlam

A nuclear Australia is inevitable: Rio chairman, Sydney Morning Herald, Courtney Trenwith, May 6, 2011,  A NUCLEAR Australia is inevitable if the country is serious about reducing carbon emissions, according to the chairman of Rio Tinto, Jan du Plessis… Continue reading

May 6, 2011 Posted by | General News | 1 Comment

Japanese farmers seek radiation free hay from Australia

Japanese farmers seek Australian help after nuclear nightmare, ABC RuralNews,  06/05/2011 Japanese farmers in the shadow of the failed nuclear power station are desperate for clean and safe Australian hay for their cattle. Continue reading

May 6, 2011 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Wester Australian Industry Bodies Behind the Times on Energy

the reality of what is happening around the world: every year for the last 15 years the growth in renewable energy’s capacity has outstripped the growth in nuclear capacity, and last year investment in renewable energy over-took investment in nuclear and fossil fuelled energy combined. In 2010 world-wide cumulative installed capacity from wind turbines, biomass, waste-to-energy and solar power surpassed installed nuclear capacity for the first time in history.

Australia nuclear power – WA industry lobbies stuck in the past on energy thinking,  social justice and sustainable living –May 4, 2011 — tony serve, Suggestions by the WA Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Chamber of Minerals and Energy that nuclear power should be part of WA’s energy supply by 2031 are unrealistic and outdated, the Australian Greens say. Continue reading

May 6, 2011 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment