Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Some uncomfortable questions for Sam Chard · General Manager, Australian Radioactive Waste Agency.

Why was Manager Chard nearly two years ago referring to Whyalla as a port for the transport of nuclear material?

Was this to pave the way for using Whyalla for transport of nuclear material for the proposed Kimba facility? 

Had the Whyalla municipal administration been approached about the possible use of its port for transport of nuclear material?

Has Chard or someone else from the federal government approached or discussed possible transport arrangements for nuclear material with any transport or logistics contractors or consultants?

If so will Chard publicly and fully disclose the extent and details of the approaches or discussions including identifying the contractors or consultants? 

Was the Whyalla municipal administration involved in these approaches and discussions?

Did any of the contractors or consultants point out that the transport proposals by the federal government were in breach of international standards and prescriptions and did not follow the recognised best practices with respect to the transport ingredient of those proposals?

In seeking this information Chard should be warned that parts of it are already known and hence she should be careful about the veracity of her responses and waive any claims of confidentiality
Presumably the parties seeking any form of judicial review would be able to seek this information as a pre-trial disclosure

August 19, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Woodside-BHP oil and gas merger “disastrous” for climate, and some shareholders — RenewEconomy

BHP and Woodside to merge oil and gas businesses, creating a $41bn giant. It might be good for BHP, but could be a disaster for the climate. The post Woodside-BHP oil and gas merger “disastrous” for climate, and some shareholders appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Woodside-BHP oil and gas merger “disastrous” for climate, and some shareholders — RenewEconomy

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Australian “dual turbine” wave power breakthrough promises to double efficiency — RenewEconomy

Australian-led research breakthrough raises fresh hopes that wave power can play a large-scale and commercially viable role in the global shift to renewables. The post Australian “dual turbine” wave power breakthrough promises to double efficiency appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Australian “dual turbine” wave power breakthrough promises to double efficiency — RenewEconomy

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Australian researchers set new efficiency record for double-sided solar cells — RenewEconomy

Australian National University researchers set new efficiency record for double-sided solar cells and hope deliver a boost solar farm output. The post Australian researchers set new efficiency record for double-sided solar cells appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Australian researchers set new efficiency record for double-sided solar cells — RenewEconomy

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Italian energy giant plans another 1,000MW renewables in Australia, seeks retail licence — RenewEconomy

Europe’s biggest utility plans to add another 1,000MW of renewables capacity in Australia and is seeking a retail licence to focus on industrial customers. The post Italian energy giant plans another 1,000MW renewables in Australia, seeks retail licence appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Italian energy giant plans another 1,000MW renewables in Australia, seeks retail licence — RenewEconomy

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Radioactive snakes may monitor Fukushima fallout,

Radioactive snakes may monitor Fukushima fallout, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, By Susan D’Agostino | August 17, 2021 When a massive earthquake followed by a tsunami hit Japan a decade ago, the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant experienced a catastrophic meltdown. Humans fled a wide area around the plant that today is known as the Fukushima Exclusion Zone, while animals and plants remained. Now, scientists have enlisted the help of snakes in the zone to make sense of the disaster’s impact on the environment. Their findings, reported in an Ichthyology and Herpetology paper, indicate that Fukushima’s native rat snakes, like canaries in a coal mine, may act as living monitors of radiation levels in the region.

“Because snakes don’t move that much, and they spend their time in one particular local area, the level of radiation and contaminants in the environment is reflected by the level of contaminants in the snake itself,” Hannah Gerke, a lead author on the study, said.

………… The scientists’ findings reinforced their 2020 study that found a high correlation between levels of radiocesium—a radioactive isotope of cesium—in the snakes and levels of radiation in their environment.

………. rat snakes have relatively small home ranges; they travel an average of 65 meters (approximately 213 feet) each day, according to the study. And they are susceptible to accumulating radionuclides—unstable atoms with excess nuclear energy—from disasters such as the one that took place in Fukushima. A rat snake that makes its home in a small but heavily contaminated area will tell a different story than a rat snake lives in a less contaminated locale.

In the decade since the nuclear disaster, most of the contaminants have settled in the soil. This means that animals such as birds that spend much of their time in trees have limited insight to offer about contaminants on the ground. But snakes, whose long bodies slither in and burrow under the soil, can help determine degrees of contamination.

Also, snakes live long, which means that the data they gather provides information about environmental contaminants over time……………..


The scientists identified more than 1,700 locations in the region that the snakes frequented. Rat snakes in Fukushima, it turns out, avoid evergreen broadleaf forests but spend time close to streams, roads, and grassland. They also frequent trees and buildings.

What did the snakes reveal? Some of the snakes’ radiation exposure in the Fukushima Exclusion Zone hails from contaminated prey they eat, but most—80 percent—comes from contact with contaminated soil, trees, and plants.

“Understanding how contaminants move throughout an ecosystem and how they move in different animals throughout the food web gives us a better picture of the impacts [of the nuclear disaster] to the ecosystem,” Gerke said………….. https://thebulletin.org/2021/08/radioactive-snakes-may-monitor-fukushima-fallout/

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Big winners from the Afghan war -the weapons-making corporations.

Progressive Critics Say Investors in US Weapon-Makers Only Clear Winners of Afghan War
The military-industrial complex got exactly what it wanted out of this war.”    https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/08/17/progressive-critics-say-investors-us-weapon-makers-only-clear-winners-afghan-war

As the hawks who have been lying about the U.S. invasion and occupation of Afghanistan for two decades continue to peddle fantasies in the midst of a Taliban takeover and American evacuation of Kabul, progressive critics on Tuesday reminded the world who has benefited from the “endless war.”

“Entrenching U.S. forces in Afghanistan was the military-industrial complex’s business plan for 20+ years,” declared the Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group Public Citizen.

“Hawks and defense contractors co-opted the needs of the Afghan people in order to line their own pockets,” the group added. “Never has it been more important to end war profiteering.”

In a Tuesday morning tweet, Public Citizen highlighted returns on defense stocks over the past 20 years—as calculated in a “jaw-dropping” analysis by The Intercept—and asserted that “the military-industrial complex got exactly what it wanted out of this war.”

The Intercept‘s Jon Schwarz examined returns on stocks of the five biggest defense contractors: Boeing, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and General Dynamics

defense stocks outperformed the stock market overall by 58% during the Afghanistan War.

.

Schwarz found that a $10,000 investment in stock evenly split across those five companies on the day in 2001 that then-President Georg W. Bush signed the authorization preceding the U.S. invasion would be worth $97,295 this week, not adjusted for inflation, taxes, or fees.

According to The Intercept:

This is a far greater return than was available in the overall stock market over the same period. $10,000 invested in an S&P 500 index fund on September 18, 2001, would now be worth $61,613.

That is, defense stocks outperformed the stock market overall by 58% during the Afghanistan War.

“These numbers suggest that it is incorrect to conclude that the Taliban’s immediate takeover of Afghanistan upon the U.S.’s departure means that the Afghanistan War was a failure,” Schwarz added. “On the contrary, from the perspective of some of the most powerful people in the U.S., it may have been an extraordinary success. Notably, the boards of directors of all five defense contractors include retired top-level military officers.”

“War profiteering isn’t new,” journalist Dina Sayedahmed said in response to the reporting, “but seeing the numbers on it is staggering.”

Progressive political commentator and podcast host Krystal Ball used Schwarz’s findings to counter a key argument that’s been widely used to justify nearly 20 years of war.

“This is what it was really all about people,” she tweeted of the defense contractors’ returns. “Anyone who believes we were in Afghanistan to help women and girls is a liar or a fool.”

Jack Mirkinson wrote Monday for Discourse Blog that “it is unquestionably heartbreaking to think about what the Taliban might inflict on women and girls, but let us dispense with this fantasy that the U.S. has been in Afghanistan to support women, or to build democracy, or to strengthen Afghan institutions, or any of the other lines that are deployed whenever someone has the temerity to suggest that endless war and occupation is a harmful thing.”

“We did not go into Afghanistan to support its people, and we did not stay in Afghanistan to support its people,” he added. “It is astonishing, given what we know about the monsters that the U.S. has propped up time and time again around the world, that the myth persists that we do anything out of our love for human rights. We went in and we stayed in for the same reason: the American empire is a force that must remain in perpetual motion.”

As Common Dreams reported Monday, while the Taliban has retaken control, anti-war advocates have argued diplomacy is the only path to long-term peace, with Project South’s Azadeh Shahshahani emphasizing that “the only ones who benefited from the U.S. war on Afghanistan were war-profiteering politicians and corporations while countless lives were destroyed.”

Responding to Shahshahani’s tweet about who has benefited from two decades of bloodshed, Zack Kopplin of the Government Accountability Project wrote, “Adding war-profiteering generals to the mix too.”

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Afghanistan: anatomy of a fool’s errand — daryanenergyblog

Originally posted on daryanblog: The algorithm’s running social media seem to be getting darn smart. Because just the other day, 55 days: the fall of Saigon popped into my feed. And to say this is eerily similar to events in Afghanistan is an understatement. You even had incidences of desperate people trying to hang on…

Afghanistan: anatomy of a fool’s errand — daryanenergyblog

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

August 18 Energy News — geoharvey

Opinion: ¶ “Higher Carbon Prices Driving Greater Interest In Carbon Capture Technology” • Carbon capture is expensive, at about $120 a ton, and it doesn’t work very well. It may be a decade or more before carbon capture is commercially viable. But as countries prices on carbon, it might be possible to make carbon capture […]

August 18 Energy News — geoharvey

August 19, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment