Australian news, and some related international items

Media hype about nuclear fusion is designed to make research on thermonuclear weapons look acceptable.

Gordon Edwards, 26 Dec 22, The recent worldwide media hype about fusion energy saving the world by providing clean energy in the foreseeable future, based on a single 85 nanosecond burst of fusion heat triggered by a battery of 192 lasers focussed on a peppercorn-sized pellet at a US weapons laboratory, is extraordinarily unbalanced and deceptive reporting. I believe it to be fundamentally fraudulent, and quite contrary to the Pugwash movement’s commitment to promoting scientific, evidence-based policymaking. 

The distortion of truth on this topic is designed to make research on thermonuclear weapons more acceptable to the public and to elected representatives. It will have no near-term applications that will be of any use in tackling climate change. To assert the contrary is naive at best, or manipulative and dishonest at worst.

A balanced debate is not achievable when one side of the debate is so unbalanced to begin with. It is not advisable to dilute every climate change discussion by giving equal time to climate deniers, nor to include creationist theories in every discussion of evolution, nor to invite anti-vaxers in all discussions of the covid pandemic. Similarly it is not helpful to have fusion energy enthusiasts distracting our attention completely away from the military nature of the National Ignition Facility at Lawrence Livermore National Labs,

The following two paragraphs by M.V. Ramana put the matter quite succinctly:(

See )

“On December 13, the US Department of Energy (DOE) announced that the National Ignition Facility (NIF) at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory had reached a “milestone”: the achievement of “ignition” in nuclear fusion earlier in the month. That announcement was hailed by many as a step into a fossil fuel free energy future. US senate majority leader Charles Schumer, for example, claimed that we were “on the precipice of a future no longer reliant on fossil fuels but instead powered by new clean fusion energy”.

“But in truth, generating electrical power from fusion commercially or at an industrial scale is likely unattainable in any realistic sense, at least within the lifetimes of most readers of this article. At the same time, this experiment will contribute far more to US efforts to further develop its terrifyingly destructive nuclear weapons arsenal.”


December 26, 2022 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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