Australian news, and some related international items

A mother’s love, after Hiroshima

Fukushima 311 Watchdogs

Behind her the dome ruins in Hiroshima.Japanese children in summer kimono offer prayers with paper lanterns..jpg

“Someday, the voices of the hibakusha will no longer be with us to bear witness. But the memory of the morning of August 6, 1945, must never fade. That memory allows us to fight complacency. It fuels our moral imagination. It allows us to change.”

President Obama said these words standing in front of the cenotaph in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Parkon May 27. At that moment, the debates about why he should or should not visit Hiroshima and what he should or should not do there no longer mattered to me. As the daughter of a hibakusha, a survivor of the Hiroshima attack, I was grateful that the president paid respect to the victims who died that day, to those who lived, and to those who continue to live, being victims to their memories of August 6.

My mother, Toshiko Ishikawa, was a 12-year-old girl in Hiroshima the day…

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August 5, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hiroshima Day, and a nuclear tale of two cities

6th August – Hiroshima Day. Rather lost in the Brazil Olympics hype, but not forgotten by the hibakusha and other survivors, and families of victims of the nuclear bombing, and of those others, world-wide, who care.

State of the Climate Report documents shattering of environmental records.

a-cat-CANThe global nuclear industry, teetering on economic collapse, is intently watching for decisions made in two cities, London and New York.

London. Prime Minister Theresa May suddenly threw a spanner in the works of the world’s largest nuclear power programme – Hinkley Point C – for Somerset, England.  Just days before, France’s State-owned company EDF had given approval to build the project. The EDF decision was fraught, too, with unions opposing it, and senior managers urging delay. Everybody, including Tories, knows that the project is, economically, a white elephant.   Why do the French and  UK governments want to go on with it?  Complicated politics, l’honneur, and like Macbeth -in too deep to get out?

And then there’s the global nuclear lobby, ever there with political campaign funding and propaganda, and desperate for Hinkley to be the flagship of a new world-wide nuclear renaissance.

There’s also, however, the “small nuclear” lobby, like an aggressive little chihuahua, snapping at the heels of Big Nuclear. They wouldn’t mind if Hinkley fizzled out – it would prove that their (still only on paper)  Small Modular Nuclear Reactors (SMRs)  and PRISMS, will fix British energy, climate change, and the global nuclear waste problem.

New York. The global nuclear industry is taking comfort from the latest decision in New York. The New York State Public Service Commission, backed by the Governor, approved a $7.6 billion bailout of aging nuclear power plants, including them in a “Clean Energy Standard”. It is hoped that this will kick off a nuclear revival.


FEDERAL. New Minister for Resources, Matt Canavan , a climate change denier. New Climate Denialist One Nation Senator warns on United Nations Climate Plot.

Western Australia‘s Environmental Protection Agency rejects Cameco’s Yeelirrie Uranium project.

South Australia. Nick Xenophon says only a referendum is adequate to resolve South Australia’s nuclear waste decision.  Goodbye and good riddance to nuclear stooge Senator Sean Edwards.  Festering doubts on impartiality of Nuclear Royal Commissioner Kevin Scarce.


August 5, 2016 Posted by | Christina reviews | Leave a comment

ITS 3 MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT Stop the clock on nuclear weapons

greensSmIn 1972 the world banned biological weapons.

In 1993 we banned chemical weapons.

In 1997 we banned land mines.

world-nuclear-weapons-freeIn 2008 we banned cluster munitions.

2016 should be the year we ban nuclear weapons.

There are currently 15,000 nuclear weapons between nine countries. The risks are real and the consequences are catastrophic.

We have a choice to join with 127 countries and progress the important work of banning nuclear weapons. Or Australia can continue to stand in the shadows of nuclear armed states and the threat of nuclear war and mutual destruction.

Add your name to the call on Julie Bishop to support the resolution for a global treaty banning nuclear weapons at this years UN Working Group for Nuclear Disarmament meetings……..

August 5, 2016 Posted by | ACTION | Leave a comment

Traditional Aboriginal owners re-affirm their opposition to uranium mining at Yeelirrie

handsoffTraditional Owners welcome Yeelirrie decision and re-affirm anti uranium mining position 4th August 2016

Traditional Owners at Yeelirrie have fought against uranium mining for over 40 years.

The decision from the EPA comes as welcome relief but Traditional Owners remain wary.

Richard Evans Koara elder and co-founder of the West Australian Nuclear Free Alliance has said “The EPA decision to protect subterranean fauna is a good decision and the right decision and we are happy with the outcome.

But we believe the EPA has underestimated the risk to bush foods, public health and water and most importantly our cultural heritage and our community’s opposition to the mine.”

“I invite the Minister (who has never spoken to us before) to come and meet with us the Traditional Owners of Yeelirrie before making a decision about our country. No Minister has come to talk to us about that country.

Yeelirrie is an important place in our culture, it is a dreaming site it important to us and other tribes around us.

In the short time since WA was colonised there have been drastic changes to the ecosystem and the country.” …

“It’s not just about protecting this country for us – but uranium threatens communities and country from the cradle to the grave, at home and overseas.

This is our responsibility and we take that responsibility seriously. We have to leave this poison where it is.” … “

August 5, 2016 Posted by | aboriginal issues, uranium, Western Australia | Leave a comment


 greensSm August 3, 2016

The Greens have urged WA Environment minister Albert Jacobs to uphold the EPA’s advice to reject the controversial Yeelirrie uranium in the Goldfields of WA.
“The Yeelirrie uranium mine was first proposed in the 1970’s and has faced strong local and state wide community opposition for decades,” said Greens nuclear spokesperson Scott Ludlam.
“Today’s decision by the EPA should be the final nail in a proposal that should never have seen the light of day.
“The onus is now on Albert  Jacobs to score a rare win for the WA environment and shut this proposal down once and for all.”
Senator Ludlam congratulated  pastoralists, anti-nuclear campaigners and local Traditional Owners for their tireless work to oppose a project that would have been an environmental disaster.

August 5, 2016 Posted by | politics, uranium, Western Australia | Leave a comment

New Climate Denialist One Nation Senator warns on United Nations Climate Plot

sea level flat earth

Malcolm Roberts: One Nation senator-elect says UN trying to impose global government through climate chance policy, ABC News,  By political reporters Stephanie Anderson and Matthew Doran, 4 Aug 16  New One Nation senator-elect Malcolm Roberts has argued the United Nations is trying to impose global government through climate change policy.

Mr Roberts is one of three One Nation senators joining party leader Pauline Hanson in the new-look Upper House, after the final vote count was finalised today.

In an interview on ABC local radio, Mr Roberts said there were a number of movements undermining Australian sovereignty.

“Do you think the UN’s trying to impose some sort of global government through climate change policy?” 774 ABC Melbourne host Rafael Epstein asked.

“Definitely,” replied Mr Roberts……….

United Nations ‘driving’ climate scienceMr Roberts, a prominent climate change sceptic with the Galileo Movement, also renewed calls for an inquiry into CSIRO’s climate change research.

Mr Roberts, whose latest press release stated that he “spent the last nine years working pro bono checking alarmist climate claims”, said he wanted to repeal any legislation put in place “as a result of the claim that humans affect global climate as a result of our use of hydrocarbons fuels, coal, oil, natural gas”.

Describing himself as a scientist, he said “we need to stop these ridiculous lies based on climate”.

“I went looking into the agencies that have been spreading the climate science,” he said.

“I started finding out things about the CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology.

“That led me then to the UN, which has been driving this.

“Then I started following the money trails. It’s important to understand the motives.”……..

August 5, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Global climate change effects now evident – State of the Climate Report

“Looking at a range of climate measurements, 2015 was yet another highly significant year,” she said. “Not only was 2015 the warmest year on record by a large margin, it was also another year when the levels of dominant greenhouse gases reached new peaks.” 

The state of the climate report is now in its 26th year. The peer-reviewed series is published annually by the American Meteorological Society.

global-warming1Environmental records shattered as climate change ‘plays out before us’

Temperatures, sea levels and carbon dioxide all hit milestones amid extreme weather in 2015, major international ‘state of the climate’ report finds,   , 3 Aug 16, The world is careening towards an environment never experienced before by humans, with the temperature of the air and oceans breaking records, sea levels reaching historic highs and carbon dioxide surpassing a key milestone, a major international report has found.

The “state of the climate” report, led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) with input from hundreds of scientists from 62 countries, confirmed there was a “toppling of several symbolic mileposts” in heat, sea level rise and extreme weather in 2015.

“The impacts of climate change are no longer subtle,” Michael Mann, a leading climatologist at Penn State, told the Guardian. “They are playing out before us, in real time. The 2015 numbers drive that home.”

Last year was the warmest on record, with the annual surface temperature beating the previous mark set in 2014 by 0.1C. This means that the world is now 1C warmer than it was in pre-industrial times, largely due to a huge escalation in the production of greenhouse gases. The UN has already said that 2016 is highly likely to break the annual record again, after 14 straight months of extreme heat aided by a hefty El Niño climatic event, a weather event that typically raises temperatures around the world.

The oceans, which absorb more than 90% of the extra CO2 pumped into the atmosphere, also reached a new record temperature, with sharp spikes in the El Niño-dominated eastern Pacific, which was 2C warmer than the long-term average, and the Arctic, where the temperature in August hit a dizzying 8C above average. Continue reading

August 5, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

 The great uranium mining outsourcing to the “underpolluted” countries

antnuke-relevantUranium from Russia, with love, Ecologist, Nick Meynen 4th August, 2016

“………..the bigger issue should be that uranium mining is just a very dirty business that we didn’t clean up but source out. France used to have 200+ uranium mines but thanks to better care for environment and workers the last one closed in 2001. Instead, new ones were opened in places like NigerNamibia and Malawi. In short: places where we can shift the real costs from uranium mining to the people and environment. As a matter of fact, CEOs in the business are quite frank about that. The former CEO of Paladin, John Borshoff, an Australian uranium producer who opened mines in Namibia, said that Canadian and Australian environmental norms are “over-sophisticated“. What he actually means is that in African countries you don’t need to pay much or anything at all to “protect” either your workers or the people living in the vicinity from dying from cancer due to exposure to uranium.

He’s just implementing the Lawrence Summers Principle. This ‘principle’ originates from a 1991 memo written or dictated by Summers whilst he was the World Bank’s chief economist. In this memo, he promoted dumping toxic waste in the Third World for economic reasons: “Just between you and me, shouldn’t the World Bank be encouraging more migration of the dirty industries to the LDCs [Least Developed Countries]? […] A given amount of health impairing pollution should be done in the country with the lowest cost, which will be the country with the lowest wages. I think the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable and we should face up to that.”

The uranium sector squared up to that. But for how much longer will it get away with that? Continue reading

August 5, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Fires near Hanford nuclear site: (climate change would bring these dangers to South Australia, too)

“Very Serious”: Wildfires burn close to US nuclear site — ‘Red Flag Warning’ issued — bushfireFEMA: “Fire threatened such destruction as would constitute a major disaster” — Largest wildfire in country (VIDEO)

NPR, Aug 3, 2016 (emphasis added): Washington Fire Crews Fight To Keep Buffer Between Wildfire, Nuclear Reactor — Officials from the Hanford nuclear reservation and Energy Northwest have been meeting with fire managers in southeast Washington state Tuesday. The nearby Range 12 Fire has grown to more than 177,000 acres and high winds are predicted this evening. Fire managers are very serious about keeping the Range 12 Fire off the central portion of the Hanford nuclear site and away from the Northwest’s only nuclear reactor… Energy Northwest spokesman John Dobken called the fire’s distance from the reactor a “non-issue,”… However, fire crews were still active on Rattlesnake Tuesday. Helicopters won’t be able to fly if gusts reach 20-30 miles per hour as predicted.

KEPR, Aug 2, 2016: The fire that began on the Yakima Training Center Saturday night and burned into Benton and Grant Counties over the weekend has ballooned to over 175,000 acres according to fire crews… The Range 12 fire [is] burning close to Hanford… The Northwest Incident Command team managing the firefighting efforts said [the blaze] is getting dangerously close to West Richland… A red flag warning is in place until 8 p.m. Tuesday night… Fire officials said the Red Flag Warning is causing concern for controlling containment lines around the blaze… As of Tuesday the Range 12 blaze stretched… from the Yakima Training Center toward the Hanford Reservation… Randall Rishe with BLM [Bureau of Land Management] said at this time they do not have a clear estimate of when the fire will be fully contained.

NPR, Aug 2, 2016: The Country’s Largest Wildfire Is Burning In Washington State… About 400 firefighters, three helicopters and 34 engines are fighting it. Some firefighters and land managers say they’re on edge because of predicted gusty winds and a red flag warning. The breeze is already kicking up, and firefighters worry that burned areas could pop up and jump the established fire lines. Crews set a backfire Sunday night on Rattlesnake Mountain to keep the Range 12 fire from burning contaminated areas of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation… [This] is the largest wildfire on a list of fires managed by government agencies.

KIRO, Aug 1, 2016: FEMA funds to help fight Benton County wildfire — A wildfire burning toward the Hanford nuclear reservation scorched about 110 square miles of brush and grass Monday as it spread… [FEMA] has authorized the use of federal funds to help with firefighting costs for the South Ward Gap Fire burning in Benton County, Washington. FEMA Region X Regional Administrator Kenneth D. Murphy determined that the fire threatened such destruction as would constitute a major disaster

Seattle Times, Aug 2, 2016: Winds whip up wildfires; one blaze bearing down on Hanford site… winds pushed the Range 12 fire toward the Hanford Nuclear Reservation… Rishe said the fire Sunday ripped through grass, sagebrush and cheatgrass with ferocity… Crews are racing to put the fire down before winds make the situation more dangerous.

Seattle Times, Aug 2, 2016: Wildfire near Hanford site larger than first thought; high winds a concern — The Range 12 fire, near the Hanford nuclear site, is now 175,000 acres — much bigger than crews first realized… More than 400 firefighters are working the Range 12 fire, which is west of the Hanford nuclear site. Rishe said “there’s very low concern along Highway 240,” the barrier to the nuclear site. But, “it’s all contingent on this wind event.”

Tri-City Herald, Aug 2, 2016: Fire near Hanford much larger than thought… The estimated size of the fire that burned… toward the Hanford nuclear reservation has more than doubled to 273 square miles… A red flag fire warning was issued for the Mid-Columbia on Tuesday… The incident command team was concerned that established fire perimeter lines could be threatened… Crews have come from as far away as Medford, Ore., to help fight the fire.

Watch KEPR’s broadcast here

August 5, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

To the ‘Minister for Adani’ — Matthew Canavan — “No Still Means No”

 ~ Wangan & Jagalingou People 2 August 2016

“On ABC’s Q&A last night, National Party Senator, Matthew Canavan – the ‘Minister for Adani’– made a vague reference to “native title” groups’ near unanimous support for the proposed Carmichael mine.

He complained that the media doesn’t cover such supposed ‘good news’, as though his Government’s interests are not constantly boosted in the press. …

“What the Minister failed to mention, or referred to only obliquely, is that we have several legal cases running to demonstrate that Adani does not have our free, prior, informed consent, they have engaged in conduct ‘analogous to fraud’ and that, along with the State and some statutory representatives,manipulated the native title process to override our rights and interests and divide our people. … “

August 5, 2016 Posted by | aboriginal issues, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Renewed focus on CSIRO and climate change will not reverse damage done by Turnbull govt

CSIRO’s renewed climate change focus will not reverse damage done by job cuts: scientists, ABC News, PM , 4 Aug 16 By Felicity Ogilvie and staff Some of Australia’s top climate scientists say new instructions given to the CSIRO to renew its focus on climate science will not be enough to reverse the damage done by previous jobs cuts.

The Federal Government’s new Science Minister Greg Hunt has instructed the CSIRO to renew its focus on climate science.

Climate scientists from around the country, meeting in Hobart to discuss how climate change will affect Australia’s future, say they are having a hard time keeping up with the changes in how climate science at the CSIRO is being run.

CSIRO Fellow Dr John Church, an expert in estimating and understanding global and regional sea-level rise, is one of the 275 CSIRO scientists who are losing their jobs.

“This is only a step in the right direction, it certainly doesn’t recover all the positions that have been lost,” Dr Church told PM.

University of Tasmania polar scientist Matt King said Dr Church was irreplaceable, and said he was finding it hard to digest the directive given by Mr Hunt…….

Dr Rintoul said damage had been done to Australia’s international reputation as a result of the CSIRO job cuts…….he also agreed that CSIRO staff losses would have a major negative impact on Australian research.

“In short, John Church is irreplaceable and some of our staff are similarly irreplaceable. So there are areas of science that Australia used to be strong in that we will no longer be as strong in and we’ll need to rebuild,” he said…….

August 5, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics | Leave a comment

Josh Frydenberg, the Minister for Gas, er, I mean Environment

Josh Frydenberg ‘out of step’ on gas
NATALIE KOTSIOS, The Weekly TimesAugust 4, 2016 VICTORIA should end its moratorium on unconventional gas because Australia needs more energy capacity, not less, says Federal Environment and Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg.

The Victorian MP maintained his stance against the moratorium this week, leading environmental critics to say he was out of step with the rest of the state — and his Victorian Coalition colleagues.

The State Government is preparing to release its gas policy, expected before parliament resumes on August 16. The Victorian Coalition has ­already said it wants the moratorium extended until 2020.

Mr Frydenberg first flagged his concern about Victoria‘s moratorium in February when he was resources and energy minister.

This week he said the shift away from coal was not a bad thing, but the South Australian energy crisis proved there was a need for a reliable base power source, which should be gas.

“We shouldn’t have blanket moratoriums on unconventional gas like we have in Victoria and NSW because you need more gas and gas suppliers,” he told the Australian ­Financial Review.

Friends of the Earth’s Cam Walker said this was “profoundly out of step” with Victoria, where 73 communities have declared themselves gas field-free, many in Coalition-held seats. “The argument that gas is a bridging and back-up fuel is outdated,” he said.

August 5, 2016 Posted by | politics, Victoria | Leave a comment