Australian news, and some related international items

Exclusive meeting told of Australians’ approval of uranium mining, coal seam gas

Meanwhile, about 40 protestors turned up to voice their concerns outside the exclusive hotel.

CSG will be accepted, just like uranium: Hartcher ABC News 18 Aug 12, By Elyse Denman The Minister for Energy and Resources, Chris Hartcher, has told an energy forum in Armidale that coal seam gas will be accepted as an energy source, just like uranium.

The Minster says he’s convinced that public concern surrounding the coal seam gas industry will subside over time, just like the debate over uranium.

“There is no longer a community concern about uranium exploration or uranium mining,” he said. Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | New South Wales, politics | 1 Comment

USA out to get Assange, with the tacit support of Australian government

US in pursuit of Assange, cables reveal,The Age, August 18, 2012, Philip Dorling AUSTRALIAN diplomats have no doubt the United States is still gunning for Julian Assange, according to Foreign Affairs Department documents obtained by The Saturday Age. The Australian embassy in Washington has been tracking a US espionage investigation targeting the WikiLeaks publisher for more than 18 months.

The declassified diplomatic cables, released under freedom of information laws, show Australia’s diplomatic service takes seriously the likelihood that Assange will eventually be extradited to the US on charges arising from WikiLeaks obtaining leaked US military and diplomatic documents.

This view is at odds with Foreign Minister Bob Carr’s repeated dismissal of such a prospect.

Australia’s ambassador to the US, former Labor leader Kim Beazley, has made high-level representations to the American government, asking for warning of any moves to prosecute Assange. However, briefings for Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Senator Carr suggest the Australian Government has no in-principle objection to Assange’s extradition.

On Thursday, Ecuador granted Assange political asylum at its London embassy on the grounds that if extradited to Sweden to be questioned about sexual assault allegations.  He will be at risk of further extradition to the US to face espionage
or conspiracy charges. Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Assange’s case may go to International Court of Justice

Assange looks to international court THE AGE August 18, 2012, Karen Kissane, Europe WIKILEAKS founder Julian Assange will appeal to the International Court of Justice if Britain prevents him from going to Ecuador, according to a senior Spanish human rights lawyer. Baltasar Garzon, who is working on Assange’s defence, told Spanish newspaper El Pais that Britain was legally required to allow Assange to leave once he had diplomatic asylum.

“What the United Kingdom must do is apply the diplomatic obligations of the refugee convention and let him leave, giving him safe conduct,” he said. “Otherwise, he will go to the International Court of Justice.” Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, legal | Leave a comment

Australia tops the world in household solar panels

Australians lead in fitting solar panels on homes, SMH, August 18, 2012 Ben Cubby AUSTRALIANS put more household solar panel systems on their roofs than anyone else in the world last year, new data from the Clean Energy Regulator and the International Energy Agency show. The statistic astonished many in the solar industry, given Australia’s small population compared with renewable energy market leaders such as European Union countries, China, Japan and the United States.

About 392,500 new household solar systems were switched on last year. Australia still generates far less solar electricity than those countries, but the nation’s preference for small, individual panels mounted on detached, owner-occupied suburban homes means a greater number of systems were actually installed. Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, solar | Leave a comment

Wikileaks revealed how Australia joined USA in scheming against Mahomet El Baradei

US, Australia schemed against IAEA chief: cable BUSINESS RECORDER  The United States and Australia schemed unsuccessfully in 2005 to block Mohamed ElBaradei’s election to a third term as head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, a newly leaked US diplomatic cable shows.

Both countries were unhappy with ElBaradei’s “unhelpful” response to Iran’s nuclear program, but the bid to prevent his re-election to the nuclear regulatory agency’s leadership ultimately failed for lack of international support. Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics international | Leave a comment

The thyroid cancer danger lasts 50 years after radiation exposure

Thyroid cancer risk persists decades after radiation By Genevra Pittman NEW YORK  Aug 17, (Reuters) People who survived the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki as children continued to have a higher-than-normal risk of thyroid cancer more than 50 years after radiation exposure, according to a new study.

The thyroid gland, located at the front of the neck, releases hormones that help regulate the body’s metabolism. The gland works particularly hard during times of fast growth and development in kids and teens. Previous studies have shown thyroid cells are particularly vulnerable to ionizing radiation Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ukraine’s urgent nuclear waste problem

“The problem has not been solved….”

Ukraine badly needs waste nuclear fuel storage facility, says Emergencies Ministry Interfax, 17 Aug 12, Ukraine needs to give a serious thought to building a centralized storage facility for waste nuclear fuel since waste fuel from Ukrainian nuclear power plants (NPPs), which is temporary stored in the Russian Federation will start to come back from 2013, the Emergencies Ministry said. Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Youtube – Julian Assange Granted Asylum By Ecuador

Aug 16, 2012    by TheYoungTurks “WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange was granted political asylum by Ecuador on Thursday, setting up a standoff with the British government, which has vowed to block his exit from the country. The announcement was made by the Ecuadorian foreign minister, Ricardo Patiño. He said that Ecuador was granting Assange political asylum because it believed he was being persecuted for his actions as the head of WikiLeaks…”.* The Young Turks host Cenk Uygur breaks it down….

August 18, 2012 Posted by | Audiovisual | Leave a comment

“Ukrainian environmentalist brutally beaten to death”  18 Aug 12 Volodymyr Goncharenko EJOLT (Environmental Justice Organizations, Liabilities and Trade) reports the horrific news that, four days after conducting a press conference to warn that 180 tons of dangerous chemical and radioactive industrial waste had arrived at the city of Kryvyi Rih (in the Dnipropetrovsk area of Ukraine), which was likely to be “recycled” into the consumer product stream, 57 year old Volodymyr Goncharenko (photo, left) was brutally beaten to death. He was the Chairman of Social Movement of Ukraine: For the Rights of Citizens to Environmental Security. As reported by EJOLT, “According to Goncharenko, during the past several years, scavengers have removed from the Chernobyl exclusion zone 6 million metric tons of scrap metal that was subsequently smelted at metallurgical combines and reprocessed into new metal. While in theory each metallurgical combine should be equipped with radiation-monitoring equipment to check all incoming scrap, financial shortfalls have meant this was rarely the case. In 2007 Ukraine ranked eighth in global steel production and steel is Ukraine’s leading export. One can only guess how much radioactive scrap metal has ended up in exported steel.”

Pavlo Khazan of the Ukrainian Green Party stated: “We collaborated with Volodymyr for 15 years in professional and public areas. The Ukrainian Green Party has no doubt that the murder was linked to his professional activities.” Although the Ukrainian police have opened an investigation into Goncharenko’s murder, Khazan feels that to deliver justice in this case, international attention and pressure will be needed.

Please contact the Embassy of Ukraine, urging a thorough investigation of Goncharenko’s murder, as well as for an end to the “recycling” of radioactive metals and other materials into the consumer product stream. In the U.S., the Embassy of Ukraine can be written at 3350 M Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007, faxed at (202) 333-0817, or phoned at (202) 349-2920.Embassies and Consulates of Ukraine elsewhere in the U.S., or in other countries, can also be contacted.

Thanks to Nuclear Energy Information Service in Illinois for alerting us to this story.

Click here to learn more about anti-nuclear resistance to attempts at “radioactive recycling” in North America.

August 18, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Call to save Bradley Manning, whistleblower, from life imprisonment

Save human rights whistleblower Bradley Manning! Why this is important  17 Aug 12 Accused WikiLeaks whistleblower and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Bradley Manning will spend the rest of his life in prison for telling the
public the truth, if US officials get their way.

Government conduct, apparently aimed at discouraging whistleblowers, has ignored due process and made a fair trial impossible. But, in the past, outrageous government conduct has led judges to dismiss the charges against whistleblowers. Tell the judge in Bradley’s military Court Martial to do the same!

– Bradley was held in pre-trial solitary confinement for 11 months, in conditions condemned by the UN Rapporteur on Torture as “cruel, inhuman and degrading,” including being stripped and made to stand naked at roll call. This was a clear violation of the US military’s Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ: Article 13). Yet, only worldwide outrage–including over 500,000 Avaaz members signing a petition–ended this illegal treatment. Continue reading

August 18, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment