Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Sea level threat rising faster than was predicted

‘The great unknown’: New climate change data lifts the sea-level threat, SMH , Peter Hannam, 23 May 17   The giant ice sheets of Antarctica and Greenland are melting faster than scientists previously estimated, raising the prospect of faster sea level rise placing at risk low-lying areas of Sydney and similar exposed cities around the world.

New research, including from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), has lifted the “plausible” sea level rise by 2100 to as much as two metres to 2.7 metres.

That has superseded earlier estimates, such as the 2013 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), that placed the likely top range of sea level rise at about one metre if greenhouse gas emission rises continued unabated.

Those higher forecasts have now been included in new mapping by Coastal Risk Australia that combines the estimates with national high-tide data and the shape of our coastline.

The resulting maps show airports in Sydney, Brisbane and Hobart will be largely under water by 2100 if that two-metre rise happens.

Other areas at risk in Sydney from such a rise include Circular Quay, Wentworth Park, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Woolloomooloo and Rose Bay.  ………

Rising seas

NOAA estimates global mean sea levels have risen about 3.4 millimetres a year since 1993, roughly double the average rate of increase during the 20th century.

Even the last century’s pace of increase was the fastest in at least 2800 years, NOAA said.

Global warming is driving the increase in sea levels by melting land ice – such as glaciers and ice sheets – and from the thermal expansion of the warmer oceans.

John Church, a global sea level expert at the Climate Change Research Centre at the University of NSW, said other new research indicated Antarctica’s contribution to rising seas appears to particularly sensitive to carbon emissions rates – underscoring the urgency to reduce them…….http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/the-great-unknown-new-climate-change-data-lifts-the-sealevel-threat-20170522-gwa963.html

May 24, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming | Leave a comment

Tepco completes sea wall at Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant

Fukushima 311 Watchdogs

Tokyo Electric Power Co. release video footage is its completion of steel pipe sheet piles for a coastal wall designed to protect Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, which was damaged after the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

http://armydotmil.com/tepco-completes-sea-wall-at-fukushima-no-1-nuclear-power-plant/

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May 23, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

High levels of radioactive material migrating down into soil around Fukushima

Fukushima 311 Watchdogs

may 19 2017.png

High levels of radioactive cesium remain in the soil near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and these radionuclides have migrated at least 5 centimeters down into the ground at several areas since the nuclear accident five years ago, according to preliminary results of a massive sampling project being presented at the JpGU-AGU joint meeting in Chiba, Japan.

In 2016, a team of more than 170 researchers from the Japanese Geoscience Union and the Japan Society of Nuclear and Radiochemical Sciences conducted a large-scale soil sampling project to determine the contamination status and transition process of radioactive cesium five years after a major earthquake and tsunami caused a nuclear accident at the Fukushima Daiichi plant.  

The team collected soil samples at 105 locations up to 40 kilometers (25 miles) northwest of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in the “difficult-to-return” zone where entry is prohibited. The project seeks to…

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May 23, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

While ANSTO flirts with Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, the Big Story is the Adani Coal Mine

This site is dedicated to the nuclear -free movement. And at present, I am appalled that Australia is about to sign up to developing Generation IV nuclear reactors, and to once again bless the expensive and secretive activities of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation. Remember, it is OUR money, tax-payers’ money, that is being wasted on these going nowhere nuclear schemes, at a time when clean renewable energy really IS going somewhere.

Nevertheless, as “new nuclear” is in fact, going nowhere, very slowly, the current big threat to Australia’s environment, economy, and international reputation, is the Adani coal mine project.

This appalling coal mine plan  something that all Australians who care about our country, and our children’s future, should be fighting, tooth and nail.  For the moment, the nuclear push is almost dead in the water, even though its zealots persist .

May 22, 2017 Posted by | Christina reviews | Leave a comment

Poll shows that Australian voters decisively reject Adani coal mine expansion

Just 7 per cent of voters want the government to invest in Adani mine: poll http://www.theage.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/just-7-per-cent-of-voters-want-the-government-to-invest-in-adani-mine-poll-20170521-gw9k4g.html Adam Gartrell, 22 May 17, 

Just 7 per cent of voters want money from the federal government’s northern Australia investment used to prop up Adani’s giant coalmine, while nine times that number say they would prefer taxpayer cash going towards renewable energy or education infrastructure.

A new poll ReachTEL poll has found just 6.8 per cent of people support the idea of using public money to support coal mine projects such as the Indian mining conglomerate’s controversial Carmichael proposal, which would be Australia’s biggest coalmine.

Adani is seeking a $1 billion concessional loan from the Turnbull government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility to build a railway for the mine. The application will be assessed by the fund’s independent board but the government supports the plan.

But the new poll of nearly 3000 people – commissioned by the Australian Conservation Foundation – suggests the public wants NAIF investments made elsewhere. Even among Coalition voters there was only 10.5 per cent support for public money going into coalmine infrastructure.

The poll found nearly 33 per cent of people believe renewable energy projects should be NAIF’s top priority. Nearly 28 per cent believe schools and universities should be first in line for funding, with tourism and telecommunications infrastructure also attracting more support than coal.

The polling accompanies a new ACF research paper on the “opportunity cost” to northern Australia of funding the mine in Queensland’s Galilee Basin, identifying scores of other job-creating projects.

ACF economist Matt Rose says across Queensland, Western Australian and the Northern Territory there are 20 alternative proposals for jobs-rich large-scale solar plants.

There are 20 potential higher education campuses, 67 Indigenous ranger groups with no certainty of long-term funding and hundreds of locations with poor phones or internet.

“Any NAIF investment in coal will come at a huge cost to Northern Australia in terms of missed opportunities for a cleaner, smarter future,” Mr Rose said.

“Public investment in Adani coal would cheat Australians in the north out of jobs in renewable energy, better education facilities and tourism.”

Respondents to the poll also showed support for strong restrictions on any NAIF lending, with 60 per cent saying they agreed the government should “only provide funding to companies that meet minimum social and environmental standards”.

The ReachTEL poll surveyed 2984 residents across Australia in late April.

ACF is one of 130 groups involved in trying to stop the $21 billion mine, which is shaping up as one of the country’s big environmental battles.

The big four banks have all ruled out funding for the mine, angering Resources Minister Matt Canavan. But Mr Turnbull has defended the potential use of the NAIF, saying the mine would create “tens of thousands” of jobs and boost state and federal budgets.

The Queensland Labor government last week flagged it may provide Adani with a $320m “royalty holiday” to help get the mine up and running. It has also offered it free water in the form of an unlimited water licence.

At a federal level, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has suggested the mine should only go ahead if it stacks up environmentally and commercially – and that means no federal loan. However some federal Labor MPs do not believe the mine should go ahead at all.

May 22, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics | Leave a comment

NATIONALS SHOULD NAME LOCATIONS FOR NUTTY NUCLEAR POWER PLANT PLAN

The Greens NSW Energy spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham today slammed the National Party and NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro for raising the prospect of a nuclear power plant in NSW saying renewable energy is safer, cheaper, and more effective at combatting climate change.

“I challenge John Barilaro and Gladys Berejiklian to name which electorate, which suburb and which town in NSW they think a nuclear power plant should be built in,” Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham said.

“They also need to come clean with where they are planning to have a nuclear waste dump to manage the highly radioactive waste fuel that will be produced.

“Nuclear power is an enormous risk that is not worth taking. We should learn the lessons from Fukushima and Chernobyl that nuclear power can be catastrophic.

“This is just another nutty, extreme idea from the National Party who is stuck in the wrong century pushing coal and nuclear and ignoring the massive renewable energy potential of Australia.

“Launching their nuclear ambitions in Broken Hill shows the Nationals are completely out of touch with the community and the future of energy supply in Australia.

“One of the largest solar farms in the country, the Broken Hill Solar Plant, has just been built and the nearby Silverton Wind Farm will be the largest wind project in NSW once it is constructed.

“The declining cost of renewables means nuclear energy does not make financial sense, as we can see with Japanese giant Toshiba going broke because of its involvement in nuclear power plants.

“Even if the Nationals could force nuclear power through massive community opposition, it is not an answer to our energy needs or climate crisis with plants taking more than a decade to be built.

“The Greens believe the future of energy supply is renewables, not dirty coal and dangerous nuclear power,” Mr Buckingham concluded.

May 22, 2017 Posted by | New South Wales, politics | Leave a comment

Switzerland referendum result: ban nuclear weapons, shift to renewable energy

Switzerland votes to ban nuclear plants, shift to renewable energy, in referendum ABC News 22 May 17  Swiss voters have backed the Government’s plan to provide billions of dollars in subsidies for renewable energy, ban new nuclear plants and help bail out struggling utilities in a binding referendum.

Key points:

  • Provisional data shows nearly 60 per cent backed Government plan
  • Solar and wind account for less than 5 per cent of Switzerland’s energy output
  • Voters get final say on major policy issues in Switzerland

Provisional final figures showed support at 58.2 per cent under the Swiss system of direct democracy, which gives voters final say on major policy issues.

The Swiss initiative mirrors efforts elsewhere in Europe to reduce dependence on nuclear power, partly sparked by Japan’s Fukushima disaster in 2011.

Germany aims to phase out nuclear power by 2022, while Austria banned it decades ago.

“The results shows the population wants a new energy policy and does not want any new nuclear plants,” Energy Minister Doris Leuthard said, adding the law would boost domestic renewable energy, cut fossil fuel use and reduce reliance on foreign supplies……. http://www.abc.net.au/n

May 22, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Re-election of Rouhani in Iran gives hope for Tehran’s compliance with nuclear deal

Elysee: Rouhani reelection gives hope for Tehran’s compliance with nuclear deal http://theiranproject.com/blog/2017/05/21/elysee-rouhani-reelection-gives-hope-tehrans-compliance-nuclear-deal/  – The office of French President Emmanuel Macron said that the reelection of Hassan Rouhani as Iranian President gives hope for the country’s compliance with the nuclear deal.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The reelection of Hassan Rouhani as Iranian President gives hope for the country’s compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) aimed at settlement of the Iranian nuclear issue, the office of French President Emmanuel Macron said in a statement.

“The reelection of President Rouhani strengthens the hope that his government will abide accurately by the historic agreement of July 14, 2015, which allowed to regulate through the diplomatic means the disagreements on the nuclear issue and to engage in the new stage of the relations between Iran and the international community. France, in turn, will continue to exercise vigilance over the strict implementation of [the agreement’s] elements,” the statement distributed by Macron’s press office read.

In the document, the French president congratulated his Iranian counterpart on the reelection and expressed hope for the improvement of the economic, scientific and cultural ties between Tehran and Paris.

Apart from this, Macron called on Iran to contribute to the settlement of the crises in the Middle East.

“Adhering to the development of the political dialogue with Iran, France reiterates the necessity of the diplomatic regulation of the conflicts in the Middle East and urges Iran to participate in it,” the statement stressed.

May 22, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Energy, climate, emissions news 21 May 17

National
Summer energy crisis looms without reforms, Grattan Institute warns
Panicking politicians who make kneejerk decisions to bolster Australia’s energy security run the risk of fuelling a power crisis with more blackouts and restrictions, a Grattan Institute report says.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-21/grattan-institute-warns-of-looming-summer-energy-crisis/8545522

New coalmines will worsen poverty and escalate climate change, report finds
Oxfam attacks Australia’s ‘climate policy paralysis’ and urges it to promise no new coalmines and end public subsidies
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/may/22/new-coalmines-will-worsen-poverty-and-escalate-climate-change-report-finds

Cheap way to cut emissions
Graham Lloyd
Land clearing – Australia could meet a 2C warming target under the Paris agreement at no cost to business.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/climate/land-management-changes-the-lowcost-way-to-cut-emissions/news-story/eaa311fadd2d5963774b94c3bcf9bb95

May 22, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, energy | Leave a comment

Australia’s governing Liberal Coalition has really mucked up Native Title policy

Coalition in damage control over bungling of Native Title, Courier Mail, Anthony Chisolm, The Sunday Mail (Qld) May 21, 2017 IF SENATOR Matt Canavan and Senator George Brandis had worked harder and more diligently over recent months on their necessary changes to Native Title legislation, they would not have been caught in such a desperate political play on the last Senate sitting day.

May 22, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Nature Conservation Council of NSW slams Deputy Premier’s nuclear power plan

Green groups shut down nuclear NSW talk, http://www.news.com.au/national/breaking-news/green-groups-shut-down-nuclear-nsw-talk/news-story/0a4b29c1a3ae25ad8e67ce3c0130b6a2 Green groups have reacted swiftly to condemn an attempt by Deputy NSW Premier John Barilaro to place nuclear energy back on the agenda.

Mr Barilaro told the NSW Nationals Annual Conference in Broken Hill on Thursday nuclear energy could mean “guaranteed power to millions, lower bills and next to no emissions” in the face of a power crisis.

He said energy costs were crushing businesses, farmers and families.

The Nature Conservation Council of NSW called on Premier Gladys Berejiklian to declare nuclear options weren’t on the table.

“Renewables are by far the cheapest, cleanest and most sustainable way to meet our energy needs,” chief executive Kate Smolski said in a statement.

She said nuclear power was “dirty, dangerous and expensive” and could leave a “toxic legacy”.

Ms Smolski challenged Mr Barilaro to explain which electorate would house a nuclear reactor, uranium processing plant and radioactive waste dumps.

The NSW Greens energy spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham said Mr Barilaro’s comments showed the party was out of touch with the community.

“This is just another nutty, extreme idea from the National Party who is stuck in the wrong century pushing coal and nuclear and ignoring the massive renewable energy potential of Australia,” he said.

May 22, 2017 Posted by | New South Wales, Opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

“Band-aid” fix for Hanford radioactive waste tunnel

Temporary cover in place over breached Hanford radioactive waste tunnel, BY ANNETTE CARY, acary@tricityherald.com  21 May 17, Heavy plastic was pulled over the top of a Hanford waste storage tunnel on Saturday, helping keep the radioactive contents of the tunnel contained while a more permanent fix is planned.

May 22, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

China fears environmental contamination from North Korea’s underground nuclear tests

China fears NK nuke leaks, Korea Times, By Oh Young-jin, 2017-05-21 China fears environmental contamination and earthquakes that may be triggered by North Korea’s underground nuclear tests, possibly bringing Beijing to the breaking point of its patience with its blood-sealed but increasingly defiant ally, a Chinese scholar said during an interview Friday.

“Chinese people in the northeast region that borders North Korea are fearful that they will fall victim to contaminated water and seismic disruptions from its nuclear blasts,” Professor Zhu Feng of Nanjing University told The Korea Times. The interview was held before his lecture on the Korea-China-U.S. relationship, sponsored by the Korea Foundation for Advanced Studies.

Punggye-ri, North Hamgyong Province, which has served as the site for four of the five nuclear tests and will certainly accommodate a sixth, is within hundreds of kilometers of population centers in northeastern China. It is also quite close to Mt. Baekdu, a volcanic mountain that some experts fear may have another big eruption after the one in 946…….https://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2017/05/120_229715.html

May 22, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

New South Wales Green Groups challenge Deputy Premier John Barilaro on nuclear power

Green groups shut down nuclear NSW talk http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2017/05/20/green-groups-shut-down-nuclear-nsw-talk

Green groups have ridiculed talk of nuclear power being placed back on the agenda by NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro as a “nutty” idea.

Green groups have reacted swiftly to condemn an attempt by Deputy NSW Premier John Barilaro to place nuclear energy back on the agenda.

Mr Barilaro told the NSW Nationals Annual Conference in Broken Hill on Thursday nuclear energy could mean “guaranteed power to millions, lower bills and next to no emissions” in the face of a power crisis. He said energy costs were crushing businesses, farmers and families.

The Nature Conservation Council of NSW called on Premier Gladys Berejiklian to declare nuclear options weren’t on the table.

“Renewables are by far the cheapest, cleanest and most sustainable way to meet our energy needs,” chief executive Kate Smolski said in a statement.

She said nuclear power was “dirty, dangerous and expensive” and could leave a “toxic legacy”.

Ms Smolski challenged Mr Barilaro to explain which electorate would house a nuclear reactor, uranium processing plant and radioactive waste dumps.

The NSW Greens energy spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham said Mr Barilaro’s comments showed the party was out of touch with the community.

“This is just another nutty, extreme idea from the National Party who is stuck in the wrong century pushing coal and nuclear and ignoring the massive renewable energy potential of Australia,” he said.

May 20, 2017 Posted by | New South Wales, politics | Leave a comment

New South Wales govt about to go all enthusiastic about nuclear power?

Nuclear power on the agenda in NSW as Deputy Premier claims ‘we’ve been led by fear and mistruths’ ABC News By state political reporter Lucy McNally, 19 May 17, New South Wales Deputy Premier John Barilaro has put nuclear energy on the agenda, arguing it would help secure the state’s power supply in the future.

Mr Barilaro, the leader of the NSW Nationals, will address his party’s annual conference in Broken Hill today, where he will make the case for a nuclear debate.

“I’m challenging my members to look for exciting solutions and think about the generations to come,” he said.”We live in a resource-rich nation, where energy should be our competitive advantage, but we’ve had the settings wrong, we’ve been led by political correctness and unfortunately by fear and mistruths.”

Mr Barilaro said those “mistruths” had stifled debate……

“Look at France, they currently rely heavily on nuclear energy which they import from places next door like the Czech Republic and other European nations,” Mr Barilaro said.

“Yet they have made a commitment to build a plant in France. Places like the US and Korea have all decided to look at building nuclear plants.”….. [ed note – this is simply incorrect

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she was not convinced of the merits of nuclear power.

“My view always is that science and safety have to stack up, on anything,” she said.

“So I’m in the camp of the jury’s still out.”

Ms Berejiklian said she was open to discussing the issue, including at the next Council of Australian Governments meeting in June…….

The State Opposition’s energy spokesman, Adam Searle, has dismissed the comments as a “thought bubble”. “The fact is nuclear energy is enormously expensive, consumes huge amounts of water — and of course Australia doesn’t have a lot of spare water — to say nothing of the environmental issues,” he said.

“Who’s going to build it? Who’s going to fund it? It’s just ridiculous.” http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-19/nuclear-power-nsw-nationals-leader-wants-to-open-debate/8540274

May 20, 2017 Posted by | New South Wales, politics | Leave a comment