Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Kimba “interim” nuclear waste site – bad news, uncannily like the misguided New Mexico waste plan

KIMBA GOVERNMENT PROPOSALS,  by Peter Remta, 11 July 20   Is not the newspaper article below describing practically the same situation as with the Kimba proposals?

Should not the Australian government learn from this and the other unsatisfactory experiences overseas of which France is a main one despite being used as a successful example by the government for Kimba of community consent.

The author of this article and the former chair of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission of the USA (who incidentally has been to Kimba) would both be prepared to give evidence and their opinions to the Senate committee inquiry by video link.

However this article shows the effects of inept and incomplete planning as is the case with Kimba.

New Mexico nuclear facility is bad news, Las Vegas Sun, By Judy Treichel Monday, July 6, 2020, It may seem like good news in Nevada that an effort is underway in New Mexico to build a private storage facility for nuclear waste there.

But don’t be mistaken: This facility wouldn’t be an alternative to the disastrous Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository. In fact, its existence depends on Yucca Mountain becoming an operating repository. That’s unacceptable, because the Nevada facility poses far too many risks for our state.

The license application for the New Mexico facility calls for it to operate over 40 years, after which the waste stored in it would go to Yucca Mountain…..  today those Yucca Mountain deliberations are on an indefinite hold.

Now comes the New Mexico license application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which in the opinion of the Nevada Nuclear Waste Task Force the commission should not have accepted with the assumption that Yucca Mountain would be an operating repository.

During all of the time that Nevada has been fighting the Yucca Mountain proposal, we were repeatedly assured that we could place our trust in the commission because before any license was granted for construction or operation, a thorough and unbiased process would fully play out. We were told there was no reason for questioning the fairness of the commission’s licensing process…….

Any siting of a facility that creates risk for the community should require informed consent, and the people of New Mexico do not consent.

What we see happening with this so-called interim site is that it does not solve the nuclear waste problem. In fact it increases the risks by putting the waste on the roads and rails, and requiring it to be loaded and unloaded multiple times and transported more than once. Additionally, the only way a site can be considered “interim” is to know that the waste will leave, and the assumption here is that it will leave New Mexico and come to Nevada.

The incentive for the company proposing to build the facility is purely financial — specifically, it’s to gain access to the $42 billion in the federal nuclear waste fund. An interim site does not increase or improve public safety, but rather does just the opposite. It creates one more nuclear waste site and provides more room at reactor sites for more waste. And it moves the waste closer to Nevada.

A national high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain is an overwhelmingly unsafe idea. Nevada residents, elected officials and people across the country living near transport routes know it. For 20 years, the Department of Energy studied the site and discovered — or were forced to admit — that there were conditions present that, according to their own guidelines, disqualified the site.

If the licensing process ever restarts, how could we trust the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to fairly judge the science when it has previously assumed a licensed and operating repository at Yucca Mountain? Congress needs to reverse the action it took naming Yucca Mountain as the only site to be considered for a national repository, and take a fresh and fair look at nuclear waste disposal.

Initiatives like the interim storage site in New Mexico are simply misguided and misleading diversions.

Judy Treichel is executive director of the Nevada Nuclear Waste Task Force

July 11, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Foreign nuclear waste headed to Australia

Yes, this article is nearly 2 years old, but, sadly it is so relevant today!

Fears for indigenous lands as foreign nuclear waste headed our way, Weekend Australian, JACQUELIN MAGNAY, LONDON

SEPTEMBER 17, 2018,  Australia is to receive a shipment of intermediate-level radioactive waste from Britain in the next three or four years despite concerns in Scotland that the nuclear material may end up dumped on traditional Aboriginal lands.

The Australian can confirm that the waste will be temporarily stored at Lucas Heights in Sydney, until the contentious new ­nuclear waste management centre is built, possibly at the South Australian sites of Hawker or Kimba.

But the waste will not be ­material from Australian spent fuel rods from the ­decom­missioned High-Flux Australian Reactor at Lucas Heights (which was originally generated from British-sourced uranium) and ­reprocessed at Dounreay, Scotland, in 1996.

Instead it is considered too ­expensive to move that low-level waste from Dounreay, and so the nuclear waste to be transported to Australia will be “substitution waste’’ from Sellafield in England, but of a higher radioactive level.

Glasgow environmental activist Gary Cushway, who helped stop a nuclear storage plant near Coober Pedy, said there was ­increased awareness in Scotland that Australia didn’t have ­adequate storage for intermediate-level waste. He said there were fears that the new nuclear waste management facility, said to be for low-level waste, would be recategorised retrospectively to handle the intermediate-level waste.

“Once the storage facility is built for the low-level, where will they put the intermediate-level waste? It has to go somewhere and many Aboriginal owners think it will be temporarily stored with the low-level waste until that temporary status becomes permanent,’’ he said. While the Australian radioactive waste in Dounreay is believed to total about 76 tonnes and is rated low level, the grading of the waste that will be shipped to Australia is of intermediate level, but there will be less of it. It is slated to be transported by 2022 at the latest.

Britain’s parliamentary undersecretary for business, energy and industrial strategy, Richard Harrington told Parliament – “……The radioactive waste, which arose from the processing (of the Australian fuel), comprises several tens of drums of cemented waste. The substituted radioactive waste will be in the form of four vitrified residue containers holding waste that falls within the ­activity levels of intermediate-level waste.’’

He said the waste would be stored at Lucas Heights and then temporarily “co-located’’ at the new nuclear storage centre.

Australia accepted a 130-tonne “TN81 cask’’ of reprocessed intermediate-level waste from France in December 2015, which required extensive road closures for its transport from Port Kembla to Lucas Heights. It also required special government dispensation for the Lucas Heights centre to temporarily store the intermediate-level waste…….

ANSTO anticipates that four to five casks of intermediate-level waste will need storing in Australia in the next 40 years, much of which will be the return waste from France of reprocessed spent fuel rods of the current OPAL ­reactor at Lucas Heights. About 7500 200-litre drums of low-level waste is also currently stored at Lucas Heights. …..  https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/foreign-affairs/fears-for-indigenous-lands-as-foreign-nuclear-waste-headed-our-way/news-story/21a1027bafda79992897b676db2e71ed?fbclid=IwAR24ceIPdDhe0KCFKC_HKZwxHPkKjoAvB1yq53BCcK7v3DTVKd8qHeRQjxo

July 11, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

In contradiction to Angus Taylor, Australia’s Minister On Behalf of Polluting Industries, the States are leading on clean energy

How Australia’s state energy ministers are turning the tables on Angus Taylor, Guardian Simon Holmes à Court  The state energy ministers still need to deliver on their promises, but imagine if any of them held the federal portfolio   @simonahac, Sat 11 Jul 202   Sometimes it just takes a bit of leadership.

Former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull likes to say that we must choose “engineering and economics” over “idiocy and ideology”. The New South Wales energy minister, Matt Kean, has been making the right choices.

In December 2018 I singled out NSW for its reckless lack of energy policy. The state, reliant on an ageing coal fleet for 80% of its power, had been shunned by energy investors……..

NSW is blessed with high-quality wind and solar resources, but lacks transmission lines between the best wind and solar areas and the state’s major population and industrial centres. In 2018, only one-in-20 proposed renewable energy projects could be accommodated into the weak grids in the west of the state, and developers were forced to turn their attention to the other states.

In a landmark speech late last year, Kean, the newly minted energy minister, made it clear his government would respond to the climate science and embrace the opportunities presented by decarbonising the economy.

“To those vested interests and ideologues who want to stand in the way of this transition, I say enjoy your Kodak moment,” he said.

Undeterred by attacks from the Murdoch media and even the prime minister, Scott Morrison, over the following months, Kean set about turning the tables in NSW……….

What’s stunning is how much ambition has shifted, and how it’s being driven by the states. Just two years ago the modelling for Josh Frydenberg’s failed national energy guarantee predicted that NSW wouldn’t build a single wind or solar farm from 2021 to 2030. Now Kean has a plan to build as much large-scale renewable energy this decade in NSW as all of Australia built over the past 20 years. …….

The Australian Energy Market Operator and CSIRO have determined that the cheapest way to “firm” the huge amounts of renewable energy is a relatively modest mix of better interconnections with neighbouring states, batteries and pumped hydroelectricity – Snowy 2.0 project and multiple smaller projects. On economic grounds alone, fossil gas is unlikely to play an increased role.

The Rezs will also open up opportunities for energy intensive industry. Flexible demand, such as hydrogen production, can help balance the grid. Instead of fracking the Pilliga forest to produce fertiliser with a huge carbon footprint, business could build a zero-carbon factory in the New England region, making fertiliser from renewable energy.

Angus Taylor, the federal minister for energy and emissions reductions, is famously no fan of renewable energy or of setting meaningful emissions reduction targets. On electricity, the state energy ministers – right across the political spectrum – are charging ahead without him, which is perhaps as it should be, given that electricity is the states’ responsibility…….

Every state and territory has now formally signed on to a net-zero emissions target by no later than 2050, a target backed by business, unions and the opposition – yet the federal government and its donors stand in the way.

Australia has three Liberal state energy ministers. South Australia’s Dan van Holst Pellekaan wants to see his state hit 100% renewables by 2030. His Tasmanian counterpart, Guy Barnett, is gunning for 200% renewables and Kean has outlined a plan for NSW to be an energy superpower.

Sure, these energy ministers still need to deliver on their promises, but imagine if any one of them held the federal portfolio.  https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/jul/11/how-australias-state-energy-ministers-are-turning-the-tables-on-angus-taylor?utm_term=Autofeed&CMP=soc_568&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1594424036

July 11, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy, politics | Leave a comment

Court action in India against Adani – allegations of ‘coercion, fraud and undue influence’

Adani power plant and coal plans threatened by land owner court action, ABC News, By Stephen Long, 11 July 20

  “……….   Allegations of ‘coercion, fraud and undue influence’

The case filed with the court accuses Adani and its agents of using “coercion, fraud [and] undue influence” to illegally exclude thousands of people affected by the development from a required social impact assessment.

The claimants allege that a key meeting was full of labourers “from far away” who were paid to attend a crucial public hearing about the development and — in conjunction with local police — used brutal force to keep villagers opposed to Adani’s project out.

“Thousands of people gathered to go into the venue site but they were prevented both by the police, who were acting as agents of private company Adani Power Limited, as well as by their security guards,” the writ filed with the court alleges.

“The situation was so bad that the police lathi [baton] charged the affected families. When they tried to attend the public hearing were beaten mercilessly.”

Residents challenge land acquisition

The court case also challenges the forced takeover of land for the development by the State Government on behalf of Adani.

Under Indian law, a government can only acquire land for a private company if the project is for “public purpose”.

The claimants argue the project does not meet the definition of “public purpose” under the law.

Part of their argument is that the power plant will have few local benefits, since the electricity will all be exported and the coal used to generate the power will all be imported — largely from Australia.

“It is crystal clear from the various documents of Adani Power Limited that the power which shall be generated from this private project shall be exported to Bangladesh [while] the coal shall be imported from Australia … to Dharma Port and transported to the project covering a distance of around 700km causing immense pollution in transportation.

“Thus, there is not even a semblance of public interest.”….

The irony is that Jharkhand is a resource-rich state, accounting for more than 40 per cent of the mineral resources of India, and the Adani power project is situated amid some of the richest coal deposits in the nation.

Adani’s own Jitpur coal mine is just kilometres away from the project site; when the plant was first proposed five years ago, this was to be the source of the coal.

But those plans rapidly changed, apparently because under Indian law domestic coal cannot be used for thermal power projects that will export electricity to another country.

So, Adani now appears set to transport imported coal vast distances, at extraordinary expense, into a state that is home to the biggest coal reserves in India…….

‘Land is indispensable to a Santhal’

The patriarch of the Adani business empire, Gautam Adani, is one of the richest men in India, while many of the villagers affected by the Godda power project are from the other end of the wealth spectrum.

Some are from the lowest castes in the Hindu religion and others are from an Indigenous tribal group known as the Santhal.

Archaeologists estimate that the Santhal have been in eastern India for up to 65,000 years. Like Aboriginal Australians, they have an ancient and spiritual connection to the land that has long been recognised in legislation.

“Land is indispensable to a Santhal,” a local villager explained to the independent Indian filmmaker who shared her interviews with the ABC.

“It is an intrinsic part of culture. The Santhal tribe and their land are like two sides of one coin. If land exists, Santhal exists, but if the land is taken away it just means they will be totally wiped out.”

The Santhal have a practice of burying their dead in the fields they sow, which become sacred to them.

One of them says: “We belong here, this is our ancestral land. We are buried on our land. We have no problem dying on our land but we will not give it away.”

Santhal land rights have previously been protected under a long-standing law which prohibited industrial development on their farming lands, but the laws have recently been watered down…….

those fighting the project face a race against time; the High Court case, and a separate environmental challenge before India’s National Green Tribunal — scheduled for hearings in early August — will be of no consequence if construction reaches a point where the development becomes a fait accompli.

Curiously, geopolitics is working in favour of the project’s opponents.

Adani has contracts with a Chinese firm for equipment purchases and engineering work on the power plant.

With a border conflict taking India and China close to war, Adani is facing political pressure to terminate the deal, which could further delay or even jeopardise the project.   https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-07-10/adani-godda-power-plant-threatened-by-land-owner-court-action/12439624

July 11, 2020 Posted by | climate change - global warming, legal | Leave a comment

Australia a big world player in producing greenhouse gas emissions

Australia: an emissions super-power    https://apo.org.au/node/306756, 9 JUL 2020

New government figures show that the greenhouse gas emissions from Australia’s exported fossil fuels have increased 4.4% between 2018 to 2019 (OCE, 2020).

Not only is Australia a laggard in meeting its UN Paris emission reduction targets, it is now the world’s largest exporter of coal and gas. In fact, the emissions from Australia’s exported fossil fuels are now greater than Germany’s domestic emissions (Hein, Peter & Graichen, 2020).

Despite federal government claims that our national emissions have only a minimal impact on the global climate, Australia is, in fact, a major contributor to global climate change. The massive emissions that result from our fossil fuel exports are not counted in Australia’s national carbon budget under our UN climate obligations, nor do we take responsibility for the impact these emissions are having globally.

Key facts:

  • Australia’s exported emissions have increased 4.4% between 2018 and 2019.
  • In 2019, the emissions from Australian fossil fuel exports were 1.4 times greater than Germany’s domestic emissions.
  • In 2019 Australia’s exported emissions were 1.4 times greater than all the CO2 emissions produced by the 2019/2020 summer bushfires.
  • Every Australian is paying $1,832 per year for fossil fuel subsidies, compared to the one-off payment of around $78 for bushfire relief.

July 11, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming | Leave a comment

Keep Australia’s nuclear prohibition laws: it appears that nuclear is no part of climate action, not necessary

The end of ecomodernism  https://johnquiggin.com/2020/07/09/the-end-of-ecomodernism/  , John Quiggin, 9 July 20, 
I was due to appear tomorrow before the Environment and Planning Committee’s inquiry into Nuclear Prohibition in Victoria, but I’ve just been advised that it’s been deferred until after the lockdown. I’d just finished writing a supplement to my earlier submission which concluded that there was no real support for the kind of ‘grand bargain’ I’d earlier proposed, combining a commitment to a rapid phase-out of coal with a removal of the prohibition on nuclear power. It’s over the fold.

The most important group of nuclear power advocates who have consistently promoted concerns about climate change as the main reason for their advocacy have been the self-described ‘eco-modernists’. The main organizational focus of ecomodernism is the Breakthrough Institute, established by Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus in 2003.
Recently, Shellenberger has issued what he describes as ‘an apology on behalf of environmentalists everywhere’ in which he repudiates previous concerns about catastrophic climate change and indicates that he never sincerely shared these concerns. Other ecomodernists have demurred at some of his claims, but have not indicated fundamental disagreement. The result is that, as a movement combining a pro-nuclear position with a commitment to a serious response to climate change, ecomodernism has ceased to exist.This outcome reinforces the conclusion drawn from my own experience that there is no political basis for a ‘grand bargain’ combining a commitment to rapid decarbonization with the removal of restrictions on nuclear power. I therefore see no merit in changing existing restrictions.

July 9, 2020 Posted by | climate change - global warming, politics, Victoria | Leave a comment

Australia now the biggest exporter of global heating- the Saudi Arabia of coal and gas

July 9, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics | Leave a comment

NUCLEAR’s WHOPPING CLIMATE LIE – theme for July 2020

“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. A lie told once remains a lie but a lie told a thousand times becomes the truth ”

Dr Goebbels would be delighted with the nuclear lobby’s lie that nuclear power is zero carbon and will fix climate change. He would be even more delighted with the current success of this lie.

“Think of the press as a great keyboard on which the government can play.”

The failing nuclear industry is fighting for its life. It now pitches its salvation on its claim to halt climate change. Even if
that were true (which it isn’t) the world would have to construct several thousand ‘conventional’ reactors, or several millions of Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) very quickly, within a decade or two.

How is it that politicians , media, academics have swallowed this lie?

 

July 7, 2020 Posted by | Christina themes, climate change - global warming | Leave a comment

Australia seen as successful in Covid-19 response, deplorable in climate response

July 6, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, health | Leave a comment

Independent advice essential for Kimba community: they have received only pro nuclear dump propaganda

Having read the Hansard transcript of Tuesday’s Senate committee hearing it becomes even more imperative that the community at Kimba opposing the facility and others who are not completely convinced must get their own  independent advice and assessment on the government’s proposals

The most concerning of the evidence was that on behalf of ARPANSA  which contrary to expectations suggested that any community involvement or engagement in the licensing process would be rather perfunctory

The way I understand that evidence by Dr Larsson is that the extent of the consultations with the community will really be what and how the community decides – this would suggest that they will be in a far stronger position if they have proper technical information and knowledge to argue against the government’s proposals in the course of the consultations 

In view of this evidence the chairman and members of the inquiry committee  should be  formally requested   to provide the necessary funding for the independent advice and assessment and the right to bring the results into the evidence for the inquiry

The community at Kimba opposing the facility, and others must stress the disadvantage and unfairness  in their being deprived of that advice and assessment,  and that is it is also equitable for the Government to pay for the independent assessment having regard to the money already given to the community to bolster approval for the government’s choice of the facility location

After all how can ARPANSA expect them  to be fully and properly involved in the community consultation process if they do not have the necessary information? 

July 6, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

AustralianGovtWatcher comments on Senate Committee enquiry hearing on Tuesday 30 June 2020

In general both the committee members and the witnesses appeared to be ill prepared and lacked knowledge of some of the pertinent issues involved

Several important factors were neither raised by questions nor otherwise dealt with by the witnesses – these included:

  • details of expenditure of the whole exercise particularly the cost of the reports by AECOM
  • more specific description of how the Kimba proposals and present arrangements for storage of nuclear waste comply with international standards and best practice
  • no information on the radionuclides inventories and mobility 
  • information on examination of techniques and methods for permanent disposal of intermediate level waste – merely mentioned directional drilling which no doubt refers to the borehole technology
  • no specific mention of geological burial requirements and applicable codes
  • complete silence on immediate availability of the highly suitable Leonora site of the Azark Project
  • no questions regarding the previous nominations
  • no questioning of the ballot results yet seemed to agree with the Department’s proposition that the Barngarla peoples’ own ballot was of not much help since so many had not voted

Senator Sarah Hanson-Young pursued a couple of worthwhile points regarding consultations with the Barngarla and their lack of informed consent and the issue of double handling of the intermediate level waste by initial storage at Kimba followed by permanent disposal at some other location

The other member who pursued a number of issues with some success was Senator Jenny McAllister but again she appeared to lack the required knowledge to be really effective

However she was a butt to Senator Chris Carr who is obviously very much in favour of the Kimba proposal particularly with his references to his discussions with Dr Adi Paterson from ANSTO

Senator Rex Patrick asked some good questions but regrettably this was obviously slanted towards his present campaign to get the waste disposed of at Woomera

Perhaps the most badly prepared witness was Ms Sam Chard  from the Department who simply could not answer some fairly basic questions and kept asking for them to be put on notice for subsequent provision of the necessary information – she was actually castigated by Senator McAllister

Asking for requests to be put on notice is invariably good tactics to avoid having to answer immediately an uncomfortable question and I suspect there is more use of this than necessary

However this can be reduced to some extent if the inquiry committee made greater use of its powers of production and discovery before and even during the hearings

The witness with whose answers I was disappointed – and I did see a bit of him on video – was Dr Carl-Magnus Larsson from ARPANSA who was very noncommittal and not extremely helpful by continuously claiming that ARPANSA would only become involved once it received the applications for the necessary licences for the Kimba facility

The very disappointing aspect of his evidence is that he would not provide any significant technical information and seemed too interested in shoring up the position of ANSTO

It is of course very difficult in these hearings since the members of the enquiring committee are mostly not trained in the art of forensic questioning as well as having insufficient knowledge to make the inquiry process very effective

It also seems that the research team for the enquiry did not delve sufficiently into various issues that should be investigated which only makes it more difficult for the committee considering the limited time given to each member for questions

From the submissions by the government and its agencies it is now quite clear that the community members opposing the Kimba facility must get proper independent assessment and advice to be able to be involved in the consultations with ARPANSA during the licensing process in a meaningful manner

They should ask the committee to ensure sufficient funds are available for that purpose as otherwise it will be practically impossible for the community members to deal with the technical and rather scientific aspects of the licensing applications particularly as Dr Larsson was not overly encouraging in his evidence about assisting them

The best self serving evidence was from AEMCO who simply relied on their report and very stated that quite a few of the issues raised by questions ere outside of its commission

July 6, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

Murdoch press enthusiastic about nuclear propagandist Michael Shellenger

Murdoch press supports ‘reformed climate activist’ Michael Shellenberger https://independentaustralia.net/business/business-display/murdoch-press-supports-reformed-climate-activist-michael-shellenberger,14065  By Steve Bishop | 3 July 2020The mainstream press published an attack on climate science by a supposed environmentalist who is, in fact, a nuclear lobbyist, writes Steve Bishop.

THE AUSTRALIAN misled its readers this week when it carried a major article purporting to be written by a climate activist who was, as it turned out, admitting climate science was bunkum.

Michael Shellenberger, headlined as an environmentalist in the article, is, in fact, a self-advertised nuclear power lobbyist and an advocate for nuclear weapons proliferation.

Other Murdoch newspapers and Australia’s Sky News have also carried Shellenberger’s claim that:

‘On behalf of environmentalists everywhere, I would like to formally apologise for the climate scare we created over the past 30 years.’

He may once have been an environmentalist, but the fact is he was exposed – not for the first time – for attacking climate science as long ago as 2010 by the Public Interest Research Centre which reported that along with a co-author he had restated:

‘…a plethora of half-truths, misrepresentations and outright fantasies that have lately become almost canonical in the public sphere.’

Shellenberger makes his agenda clear on various websites and elsewhere: the present approach to dealing with climate change is not working, renewable power sources won’t solve the problem and, therefore, the entire world needs to be nuclear powered.

He told the Sydney Morning Herald in 2017 that the widespread adoption of nuclear power across the world would solve the climate change problem:

“…because it basically reduces your carbon emissions to near zero in the power sector.”

The Herald described him not as an environmentalist but as a ‘nuclear power advocate’.

In 2003, he co-founded the Breakthrough Institute which says on its website:

Breakthrough’s energy work has focused heavily on the future of nuclear energy. Along with a growing cohort of scientists, journalists, philanthropists, and environmentalists, we have made the case that addressing climate change will require abundant, cheap, safe, and reliable nuclear energy.’

In 2016, he became the founder and president of an enterprise lobbying for the nuclear industry, giving it the misleading title of Environmental Progress.

He describes its aim:

‘The greatest threat to the climate today comes from the decline of clean energy as a share of electricity globally. EP is working with scientists, conservationists and citizens around the world to defend our largest source of clean energy, nuclear power.’

The website boasts:

‘He has helped save nuclear reactors around the world, from Illinois and New York to South Korea and Taiwan, thereby preventing an increase in air pollution equivalent to adding over 24 million cars to the road.’

In a major article for Forbes magazine in 2018, Shellenberger wrote:

‘Who are we to deny weak nations the nuclear weapons they need for self-defence?’

In another 2018 Forbes article under the cross-heading ‘Why nuclear energy prevents war’, Shellenberger wrote:

‘After over 60 years of national security driving nuclear power into the international system, we can now add “preventing war” to the list of nuclear energy’s superior characteristics.’

Renew Economy reported in 2017 he was:

‘…stridently pro-nuclear, hostile towards renewable energy and hostile towards the environment movement.’

At that time, Shellenberger was in Australia to speak at a major conference – not a climate change summit but the International Mining and Resources Conference – to advance the cause of nuclear power.

This is not the first time The Australian has used this nuclear lobbyist to attack renewable energy and climate science. It featured him three years ago under the headline‘Nuclear “must replace coal, gas”’.

He was in Australia to promote his message that wind and solar have failed, that they are doubling the cost of electricity and that:

“…all existing renewable technologies do is make the electricity system chaotic and provide greenwash for fossil fuels.”

In his article, Shellenberger gives 12 examples of scientific findings which he says are incorrect and which are climate alarmism.

Take just the first: ‘Humans are not causing a “sixth mass extinction”’.

His assertion contradicts the work of more than 1,000 scientists contributing to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) which found ‘1,000,000 species threatened with extinction’ and warned:

“We are eroding the very foundations of our economies, livelihoods, food security, health and quality of life worldwide.”

What makes The Australian’s publishing of the article all the more risible is that in reality, it is a puff piece for Shellenberger’s new book, Apocalypse Never and is more or less identical with what he had published on his website on 29 June.

Forbes, which has carried Shellenberger’s articles in the past, withdrew the puff piece.

National Post asked Forbes why this had happened and was told:

‘Forbes requires its contributors to adhere to strict editorial guidelines. This story did not follow those guidelines and was removed.’

Don’t expect The Australian to follow suit.

(Readers who might want to read about a real climate scientist changing his mind about global warming should read Professor Richard Muller’s story.)

July 6, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

Australia was the guinea pig population for Britain’s nuclear weapons tests radiation fallout

Paul Langley  Facebook , 5 July 20
It was Operation Buffalo’s series final tonight, on the ABC, so Im interrupting my thread on Fuk ( a crime which, were I just, would see me ban myself from this page) and I want to point out , yea, the British were the spies, and we were the guinea pigs and we did what they said or else.
As late as the 80s the Poms were threatening us with jail in our own land for speaking out it. And yea, the false fallout maps that were published and the real ones hidden, and readings which were under valued by 50%. Here’s the nine maps publically released by the Royal Commission.
Once, years ago, I printed each one onto its own sheet of transparent plastic sheet. There were 12 bombs, but only 9 fallout maps.
But laying those 9 transparent maps on top of one another results in the final combined map, which proves how cunning the British spies were who used us, On Her Majesty’s Service, as guinea pigs. Whereas had the Soviets done the deeds, the nuclear veterans would have been elevated as heroes, instead of traitors for trying to speak. For at least 2 of the bombs, the Poms put a few ton of coal at the base of the bomb towers. The coal vapourised when the bomb went off, and when it condensed again it formed a black sticky goo in small droplets, containing speckles of fission product throughout it. That is what made the Black Mist of 1953 so sticky. Yep, pretty war like and cunning, the British. I am ashamed to say. I wonder why they spared Perth.

July 6, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, history, politics international, reference, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Julian Assange’s fight for freedom

Julian Assange’s fight for freedom   https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/latenightlive/julian-assanges-fight-for-freedom/12409182?fbclid=IwAR2rdBdg8aKbjWtITDgh-0EYRgJ_jqGuHL2HhlBxZe6cWz_Jwtt5HxUXl9k

By Phillip Adams on Late Night Live  n a revised edition of his book ‘The Most Dangerous Man in the World’, Investigative reporter Andrew Fowler reports on a tangled tale regarding the negotiations between Julian Assange and the US Department of Justice, to strike a deal with the incoming Trump Administration.  At that time, Wikileaks was in a strong bargaining position with its Vault 7 CIA disclosures, but a lack of trust and mounting pressure from various sources saw Assange decide to publish the CIA secrets.

Duration: 18min 48sec

Broadcast: Wed 1 Jul 2020,

July 6, 2020 Posted by | Audiovisual, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties | Leave a comment

Busting Australian govt media spin about Napandee nuclear waste plan, – by AustralianGovtWatcher

Cut through this spin from the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources – glossing over the licensing problem about waste classification. It is duplicitous about “medical” wastes. It ignores the plan’s failure to comply with all regulatory requirements, failure to properly inform local community. It makes dubious claims on economics and employment, and dubious claims about the selective community ballot, and duplicitous claims about Aboriginal involvement (AustralianGovtWatcher’s comments in red italics)

Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources National Radioactive Waste Management Facility: Hearings last Tuesday of the Senate Standing Committee on Economics

Media release
2 July 2020

The following can be attributed to a spokesperson from the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources:
“The department was pleased to attend the committee hearings on Tuesday to discuss the proposed legislation to support the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility,” the spokesperson said.

“Specifically it was also an opportunity to address some questions about the process and proposed facility, including some those which have since been raised in the media, as outlined below.

Is there are need for a facility?
“The legislation delivers on the Australian Government’s commitment to site the facility at Napandee in Kimba, South Australia.

“The facility will be for the disposal of low-level waste and temporary storage of intermediate level waste, which will be stored at the facility only if it meets strict Waste Acceptance Criteria.”

The facility will fail to meet the safety codes and prescriptions of IAEA as adopted in Australia by ARPANSA

What is proposed to overcome this problem as otherwise ANSTO or whoever else will be the operator of the facility will not get the necessary licences

“About 80 per cent of Australia’s radioactive waste stream is associated with the production of nuclear medicine which, on average, two in three Australians will need during their lifetime.”

This is a dubious claim and depends entirely on the level of classification and the source of the waste – it should be specifically broken down into those categories.

“This medical waste, along with Australia’s historical radioactive waste holdings, is currently spread over more than 100 locations across the country, like science facilities, universities and hospitals.”

True but only a portion of that waste is held or controlled by the federal government.

“It is international best practice to consolidate this waste at a purpose-built facility.”

Agreed but the facility at Napandee will not achieve this.

Can’t the waste be permanently stored at ANSTO?
“Australia cannot indefinitely produce the vital nuclear medicine
that it needs, without responsibly and safely managing the radioactive waste by product.
“The national facility will not fit at ANSTO – it requires at least 40 hectares plus a buffer zone and enabling infrastructure.
“On the other hand, the whole ANSTO Lucas Heights campus, designed for nuclear medicine and research, is only 70 hectares in size, and already has more than 80 buildings on it.”

Although unavoidable due to simply adding new buildings when needed it still shows a dismissal lack of planning over many years which is acknowledged by former senior personnel at ANSTO

Do we need more scrutiny around the process to identify a site?
“The process to site the facility was developed with the assistance of an Independent Advisory Panel which included members with a range of academic, industry and environmental backgrounds, and people who are both generally supportive and against the proposal to establish the facility.”

Absolute nonsense since the choice of the site and subsequent development proposals fail to comply with all regulatory requirements.

Moreover the community members against the proposals were never given full and proper information despite their specific requests.

A good example of this was the issue of fire risks which is of prime importance with the proposed above ground structure in the heart of prime agricultural land.

The so-called Independent Advisory Panel proved to be ineffective and was not constituted as initially planned – it certainly did nothing of consequence to identify the location and provide any real scrutiny.

“And the process has already been independently scrutinised
on two occasions.
“In 2018, the Senate Economics References Committee ran an inquiry into the process for the selection of a site for the facility, and this found that that the process was sound.
“Four years of community engagement and three years of technical studies support the identification of Napandee as a site, which is suitable technically to safely and securely manage Australia’s waste, and broadly supported by the community.”

The Senate Committee inquiring into the selection process in 2018 could not possibly be regarded as being an independent scrutiny as seen from its conclusions and recommendations.

What was the second occasion of scrutiny?

Most importantly the community at Kimba has requested funding and governmental assistance in getting their own proper and independent expert scrutiny and assessment but the government has refused the requests.

The District Council of Kimba also refused a similar request despite claiming to represent the whole community.

What economic benefits would the facility deliver for regional Australia?
“Independent economic analysis conservatively estimated the facility would bring over $8 million in economic benefits to Kimba each year.”

How?

“The facility will also be the area’s largest employer, bringing 45 local jobs.”

Much larger facilities overseas employ a fraction of that number – it is more likely to be less than 10 employees in total and will no doubt depend on the infrequent deliveries of waste to the facility.

Hard to see where the yearly economic benefits of $8 million will come – it will do nothing to replace an agricultural industry at Kimba worth between $55 million to $85 million a year which based on recent overseas situations will suffer dramatically due to the presence of the facility.

“And some 62% of the local Kimba community supported the facility in a Council-run ballot undertaken last year.”

This is based on a very selective ballot the results of which have not been correctly interpreted.

Most importantly the ballot failed on the principle of informed consent as there was a lack of proper information given to the voters prior to the ballot.

What are the ways of protecting cultural heritage?
“While there is no native title or registered heritage at Napandee, which is cleared farming land, the department recognises the Traditional Custodians in the region, who have strong views about a radioactive waste facility being situated in the area.
“If the Barngarla People are willing to consider the opportunity, the department is seeking to engage with the objective of a funded agreement between BDAC and the Government, which could include:

• a Barngarla economic plan – including $3 million allocated
by the Australian Government,
• training, employment and business opportunities,
• a cultural heritage assessment and management program,
• the opportunity to ensure Barngarla heritage and cultural values are enhanced by the Facility and its design,

That is not what the Barngarla people say particularly as the proposed funding outlined by the government will in any case come from other existing financial assistance already available to them.

In any case the government should have been consulting the Barngarla for that type of agreement several years ago and certainly well before their legal actions were taken and which were strongly opposed by the government.
It seems that it will be hard to mend the bridges!

CONCLUSION
These comments are based on various expert advice from overseas which is far more credible in the areas of nuclear science and engineering then exists in Australia mainly due to there being no local nuclear generation industry .

This expert advice can be made available to the Senate committee if necessary

However the whole process of selection of a previously nominated site and the subsequent development proposals lack any community consideration of such inherent issues as the radionuclides inventories of the waste and the risk of fires

July 5, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, spinbuster | Leave a comment