Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Time to close the unnecessary Lucas Heights nuclear reactor, now that bushfires are contained ?

With the prospect of more bursts of extreme weather in the future, yet another danger of the Lucas Heights nuclear reactor is apparent.

Meanwhile, other countries are turning to the safer and far more practical methods of producing medical radioisotopes.  (After all, the  tax-payer funded Australian National Science and Nuclear Technology Organisation ANSTO  claims that the only purpose of the reactor is medical) . Map above shows Canada’s network for production and distribution of the most important medical radioisotope, Technetium-99m , as well s as others.

Bushfire now contained   About 200 firefighters worked on Tuesday at Holsworthy and Barden Ridge backburning and creating containment lines.

By 6:30pm, the Holsworthy bushfire was considered contained, Mr Garlick said.

“Over the next few days our crews have a lot of hard work ahead of them mopping up and extinguishing all the hotspots within the containment lines of this fire,” he said.

“As these days continue, we are expecting milder conditions which will ease that threat, but residents should monitor those conditions and take advice from firefighters on the ground and through our website.”

As a result of backburning operations, some smoke would continue to remain in the Sydney area, potentially even as far as the Blue Mountains.more https://tinyurl.com/yaky4nqf

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April 20, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health, politics | Leave a comment

Children especially, need protection from increasing UV radiation

Going to extremes: UV radiation is on the way up, https://www.smh.com.au/environment/weather/going-to-extremes-uv-radiation-is-on-the-way-up-20180308-p4z3cp.htmlSMH, Nigel Gladstone 

The combination of a thinning ozone layer and farming practices in India may add up to more days of extreme ultraviolet radiation across Australia.

Sun-Herald analysis of daily UV index readings since 1997 in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane found the number of days when ultraviolet radiation reached or passed extreme levels had risen slightly.

The amount of UV that hits Australia is influenced by fluctuations in cloud cover, ozone levels and the solar cycle.

In Sydney, four of the 10 highest UV index days since 1996 have been recorded since December 2016.  While the ozone layer is recovering over the poles, it is thinning in mid-latitudes from Russia to the Southern Ocean below Australia, a study published last month in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics found.

“Decreases in ozone are less than we saw at the poles before the Montreal Protocol was enacted [in 1987], but UV radiation is more intense in these regions and more people live there,” said report co-author Joanna Haigh, from Imperial College London.

The weather bureau studied UV radiation in Australia between 1959 and 2009 and found an annual increase of 2 to 6 per cent since the 1990s, above a 1970-80 baseline. The bureau found these changes were related to ozone depletion.

Associate Professor Clare Murphy, from the school of chemistry at Wollongong University, said ozone trends were not fully understood.

“The largest factor involved in mid-latitude ozone depletion is the nitrogen cycle, which operates by nitrous oxide turning into reactive nitrogen in the stratosphere,” Dr Murphy said.

Nitrogen fertiliser is converted into nitrous oxide by soil microbes, creating a stable greenhouse gas that can reach the stratosphere, where the ozone layer protects the earth from most of the sun’s UV radiation,” she said. “However, once in the stratosphere, nitrous oxide is broken down by high energy radiation from the sun to become reactive nitrogen, which can deplete ozone.”

Dr Murphy said that last century, concerns about ozone depletion centred on “chlorine chemistry” (CFCs) because of the massive hole over the poles. “Now it’s nitrous oxide, which almost stopped the Concord from flying because they were worried about reactive nitrogen in the stratosphere.”

Nitrous oxide damage to ozone is ubiquitous, whereas damage from CFCs creates a hole during extreme weather years over the Antarctic, Dr Murphy said.

Nitrous oxide was identified as the most damaging substance to the ozone layer in the 21st century by a 2009 study published in Science. That study also suggested one of the best ways to address the problem was to give insurance to Indian farmers.

“In India, particularly, they’re putting in 10 times more nitrogen fertiliser on their crops than they need to because if a crop fails they may starve,” Dr Murphy said. “Insurance could pick up the loss.”

Robin Schofield, director of Melbourne University’s environmental science hub, said UV in Australia should be trending downwards because factors such as surface ozone, which is contained in smog, is on the rise and there is evidence of a recovery of stratospheric ozone.

The UV Index and skin cancer

The UV index relates to the intensity of sunburn-producing UV radiation. Sun protection is recommended when the UV Index is above 3 in clear sky conditions. The higher the number, the more severe.

11+ = Extreme. Avoid sun exposure between 10am and 4pm due to extreme risk of harm.

8-10 = Very High. Unprotected skin and eyes may be damaged and can burn quickly.

6-7 = High. Protection against skin and eye damage is needed. Reduce time in the sun between 10am and 4pm.

3-5 = Moderate. Stay in the shade near midday when the sun is strongest. Moderate risk of harm.

1-2 = Low. There is a low danger from the sun’s UV rays for the average person.

Note: UV intensity can nearly double with reflection from snow or reflective surfaces such as water, sand and concrete.

Heather Walker, Cancer Council Australia’s skin cancer committee chair, said UV is the most common cause of skin cancer but the council has not seen any evidence of a trend of more extreme or high UV days.

“Queensland is the skin cancer capital of Australia and they get more UV all year round,” Ms Walker said. “Skin cancer rates continue to rise but look like they may be stabilising over the next few years in all age groups except for the under 40s.”

The continued high rate of skin cancer in Australia is partly due to the ageing population, because cancer is a disease of ageing, Ms Walker said.

Brisbane average monthly maximum UV index.
Brisbane average monthly maximum UV index.

Photo: Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency

But skin cancer rates are falling for people under 40, she said, because they have had the benefit of Sunsmart messages [slip, slop, slap, seek shade and slide on sunglasses], which started in the 1980s.

“This is a message we need to keep reinforcing, because as it was put to me: ‘you don’t tell your children to brush their teeth once and expect them to do it for the rest of their lives’.”

Because UV and heat are not related, people often get sunburnt when there is no sun.

“The heat will rise and continue to rise in the afternoon, whereas UV is more of a bell curve shape that peaks in the middle of the day. And that’s why the advice is to avoid being outside in the middle of the day.

“Cool and cloudy days when the UV is high, that’s when people are most likely to be caught out because they don’t think they need sun protection.”

March 25, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health | Leave a comment

Group of Montebello nuclear test veterans have no medical insurance, not entitled to gold card

Montebello nuclear testing veterans exposed to radiation vent anger over gold card refusal http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-15/nuclear-testing-veterans-hold-protest-at-wa-parliament/9551658 By: Jacob Kagi 

March 17, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health, personal stories, weapons and war | Leave a comment

A call for rigourous examination of ANSTO’s nuclear emissions

Brett Burnard Stokes Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 27 Dec 17 

I am working on a challenge for ANSTO/ARPANSA and Chief Scientist Finkel.

Finkel says nuclear reactors are “zero emissions” … ANSTO admits to “controlled emissions” which include Iodine131 and other radioactive poisons.

ANSTO/ARPANSA employee Solomon has published assurances of safety in the event of a Lucas Heights “accident”, with no consideration of health effects other than cancer.

Australian women experience 100,000 miscarriages per year – most of these are unexplained and some could be the result of Iodine131 poisoning.

ANSTO/ARPANSA rely on the unproven hypothesis that there is no impact on any of the pregnant women who are unknowingly exposed to the “controlled emissions” from Lucas Heights.

The unproven hypothesis is supported by dodgy data from a dodgy 70 year old military operation in occupied Japan at the start of the Cold War, and a set of techniques to average and minimise predicted impacts … plus an avoidance of real world data.

Real science would not avoid the question, real science would seek a way to measure real things and test the hypothesis.

I am proposing a small budget rapid research exercise to look at
(a) dates and locations of miscarriages in Australia
(b) dates and wind conditions for Lucas Heights emissions.

Can anyone help me improve or progress this new idea?

https://www.facebook.com/brett.b.stokes/posts/1678136868883912

December 27, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health | Leave a comment

ANSTO is heading down the wrong track with their medical isotope world domination dreams.

Steve Dale shared a link.Nuclear Fuel Cycle Watch South , Australia, 18 Dec 17,

Can anyone help ANSTO? They are heading down the wrong track with their medical isotope world domination dreams. Cyclotrons are the no-waste future. “The advantage of using cyclotron rather than buying isotopes for medical application is that as the isotopes has short half-life period. By the time an isotope reaches its destination it covers its half-life. However, by having a cyclotron in the medical facility it not only reduces the cost but also, increase the number of scans to the patients in a given day. ” – and yes, they can now produce high quality Technetium 99m.
Significant Growth Foreseen by Medical Cyclotron Market During 2017-2027, 

Medical cyclotron is a machine used in the medical imaging and research field to make relatively short lived radioisotopes. Cyclotron is a particle accelerator. It is an electrically powered machine that produces a beam of charged that is then further used in medical, industrial and research processes. A cyclotron machine takes the hybrid atom (these are hydrogen that make up water except they have a negative charge) and accelerate it to very high speed. When this procedure has enough energy, the energy is spent into a target where the reaction is taken.

The new element that is produced with the strike of positive ion and neutron is radioactive element that is used for the treatment in medical research. The major isotope that is used for the cyclotron is fluorine-18. Its ability to decay itself to produce positrons, which is used around the world for Positron Emission Tomography and PET scans.

PET scans are used for the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. With the product obtained from a cyclotron, we can produce a wide variety of isotopes of our interest for medical imaging such as iodine-123, Technetium-99m and Gallium-67.

The advantage of using cyclotron rather than buying isotopes for medical application is that as the isotopes have short half-life period. By the time an isotope reaches its destination it covers its half-life.

However, by having a cyclotron in the medical facility it not only reduces the cost but also, increase the number of scans to the patients in a given day. The medical facility that used cyclotron is required to be built with extensive safety such as multiple levels of shielding, monitoring and protection to ensure safe operations…….http://www.satprnews.com/2017/12/13/significant-growth-foreseen-by-medical-cyclotron-market-during-2017-2027/

December 18, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health | Leave a comment

Did thorium pollution cause cancers and deaths in the Tweed Valley?

Cancer cluster fears after more than 20 deaths https://www.tweeddailynews.com.au/news/cancer-cluster-scare-black-sand-suspect-in-deaths/2748511/  by Alina Rylko  22nd Aug 2015  Updated: 14th Aug 2017 A MULTI-GENERATIONAL tragedy costing dozens of lives on a short stretch of road in the Tweed Valley is claimed to be evidence of a cancer cluster.

December 8, 2017 Posted by | health, New South Wales | Leave a comment

Iodine 131 – a treatment for thyroid disease, but still a radiation risk

Paul Langley Nuclear Fuel Cycle Watch South Australia, 1 Dec 17 

Today in this forum, the implication has been made that I131 as a treatment for thyroid disease is a benefit and that therefore, it is implied that the benefit of I131 as a nuclear medicine is harmless to the general public who are not in need of treatment dose I131.

It is easy to point out that low dose I131 is acknowledged as a public risk factor and is a known carcinogen. The cost/benefit equation used in medicine to determine treatments does not apply to members of the community. In fact, in the case of treatment dose radiation therapy patients, the general rule is to minimise addition exposures outside of the medical setting. It is also easy to point that world wide governments approve the medical use of nuclear medicines (radio isotopes) according to strict ethical and medical need guidelines.

What is good for someone seeking to lengthen their survival time in the context of disease is not good for someone who has no illness. Radiation is a double edged sword. In the context of the five year survival time for cancers, radiation treatments work. Longer term limits to treatments include recurring cancers and heart disease. The research clearly shows this.

The hope that I131 may be considered to be innocuous is a false one. Here is a list of US FDA approval nuclear medicines. It is forbidden under US law, Australian law etc to administer these substances to any person for any reason apart from medical need and with patient consent:

December 2, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health | Leave a comment

Queensland Labor MP angry about delay to act on black lung disease

‘The hearse is waiting in the driveway’, Brisbane Times,By Felicity Caldwell, Labor backbencher Jo-Ann Miller did not pull any punches on Thursday, coming out swinging against her own government and a Parliament committeee.

October 26, 2017 Posted by | health, Queensland | Leave a comment

ANSTO bosses support the global nuclear industry, not the well-being of Australians

Steve Dale Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 14 Sept 17,  From the document – “The ANM facility will enable ANSTO to triple its production of Mo-99, meeting domestic demand and up to 25-30 per cent of global demand.” and “The increase in production of nuclear medicines will also give rise to an increased volume of low and intermediate level waste.”
If we are meeting up to 25-30 % of global demand, then based on population, we are exporting the vast majority of this stuff while the tax payer, Australia , South Australia has to deal with the toxic legacy.
ANSTO should be dedicating their time to creating NO-WASTE solutions for nuclear medicine. Dollar signs and an urge for self preservation have blinded their thinking. I think the top people in ANSTO have placed the welfare of the global nuclear industry above the welfare of the Australian people. https://www.facebook.com/groups/344452605899556/

September 16, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, health | Leave a comment

Non nuclear production of medical radioisotopes st South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute

 85% of ANSTO Lucas Heights isotope production is for Technetium 99. This can also be made in a cyclotron by using electricity – which makes NO Intermediate Level Waste & NO long lived LLW – thereby negating a national radioactive dump facility
Having the CRIC located on the same site as SAHMRI’s cyclotron will enable new shorter half-life compounds to be used in research. There are now several compounds being developed using the cyclotron for conditions such as dementia, cancer and cardiovascular disease which need to be tracked by advanced imaging machines.

State’s most advanced clinical imaging centre, worth $13m, opens at SAHMRI  http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/states-most-advanced-clinical-imaging-centre-worth-13m-opens-at-sahmri/news-story/a20eb257edad98bb0597dd787aa6837b?nk=ba26857f63080120cbd5fc74c94d3959-1503458683, Brad Crouch, Medical Reporter, The Advertiser February 15, 2017   THE growing South Australian Health and Biomedical Precinct takes another step forward today with the opening of the most advanced clinical imaging centre in the state.

The $13 million Clinical and Research Imaging Centre at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute has been established in partnership with Dr Jones and Partners Medical Imaging.

Space on the ground level of the SAHMRI building on North Terrace has become a Dr Jones & Partners clinic, with dedicated time allocated to SAHMRI researchers for clinical research without compromising the scheduling of patient treatments.

State-of-the-art imaging equipment in the centre includes CT, MRI and PET/CT platforms.

Officials say the arrangement is moving SAHMRI in a new direction of commercialisation with industry partners to create a facility to benefit researchers with the aim of improving the treatment and diagnosis of patients. Continue reading

August 23, 2017 Posted by | health, South Australia, technology | Leave a comment

Australia must not forget – the plutonium abuse of an Australian child, by Argonne National Laboratory

Paul Langley,  https://www.facebook.com/paul.langley.9822/posts/10213752429593121CAL-2, 14 Aug 17, 5 yr-old Simon Shaw and his mum. Simon was flown from Australia to the US on the pretext of medical treatment for his bone cancer. Instead, he was secretly injected with plutonium to see what would happen. His urine was measured, and he was flown back to Australia.

Though his bodily fluids remained radioactive, Australian medical staff were not informed. No benefit was imparted to Simon by this alleged “medical treatment” and he died of his disease after suffering a trip across the world and back at the behest of the USA despite his painful condition. The USA merely wanted a plutonium test subject. They called him CAL-2. And did their deed under the cover of phony medicine.

“Congress of the United States, House of Representatives, Washington, DC 20515-2107, Edward J. Markey, 7th District, Massachusetts Committees, [word deleted] and Commerce, Chairman Subcommittee on Telecommunications and Finance, Natural Resources, Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe] MEMORANDUM To: Congressman Edward J. Markey From: Staff Subject: The Plutonium Papers Date: 4/20/94

Staff Memo on Plutonium Papers

The medical file for Cal-2 also contains correspondence seeking follow-up from Argonne National Laboratory in the 1980s. Cal-2 was an Australian boy, not quite five years old, who was flown to the U.S. in 1946 for treatment of bone cancer. During his hospitalization in San Francisco, he was chosen as a subject for plutonium injection. He returned to Australia, where he died less than one year later.

Document 700474 is a letter from Dr. Stebbings to an official at the Institute of Public Health in Sydney, Australia, in an attempt to reach the family of Cal-2. This letter reports that the child was “injected with a long-lived alpha-emitting radionuclide.” Document 700471 is a letter from Dr. Stebbings to New South Wales, Australia (names and town deleted), inquiring about recollections of the boy’s hospitalization in 1946. The letter notes that, “those events have become rather important in some official circles here,” but provides few details to the family.

A hand-written note on the letter reports no response through October 8, 1987. Considering the history on the lack of informed consent with these experiments, it is surprising that the letters to Australia failed to mention the word “plutonium.”

The Australian news media has since identified Cal-2 as Simeon Shaw, the son of a wool buyer in New South Wales, and information on the injection created an international incident. The information in the medical file does indicate that at a time when Secretary Herrington told you that no follow-up would be conducted on living subjects, the Department of Energy was desperately interested in conducting follow-up on a deceased Australian patient.

In an effort to determine the full extent of follow-up by the Department after 1986, your staff has requested, through the Department’s office of congressional affairs, the opportunity to speak with Dr. Stebbings, Dr. Robertson, and any other officials who may have been involved in the follow-up. So far, that request has been unsuccessful. It remains an open question as to what was the full extent of follow-up performed in the 1980s, and whether the efforts then would facilitate any further follow-up on subjects now. It seems appropriate for the Interagency Working Group to address these questions as its efforts continue.”

Source: National Security Archives, George Washington Universityhttp://www.gwu.edu/…/…/mstreet/commeet/meet1/brief1/br1n.txt

See also ACHRE Final Report.

NO MORE DUAL USE ABUSE OF AUSTRALIANS MR PRESIDENT. STOP FUNDING SYKES AND FLINDERS UNIVERSITY IN THE DOE QUEST FOR CHEAP CLEANUP OF URANIUM CONTAMINATED SITES.

Mr. President, you are wrong if you think you can do the same again re hormesis funding in Australia as the USA did with CAL-2. We have not forgotten and do not trust you or your paid agents in Australian universities such as Flinders.

August 14, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health, history, reference, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

From the doctors’ point of view, promoting Adani coal mine is just like promoting tobacco

Medical experts say lending to Adani is the same as supporting big tobacco High-profile doctors say Carmichael coalmine poses a ‘grave danger to public health’, including from air pollution and black lung disease, Guardian, Melissa Davey 6 June 2017, Lending money to Indian mining giant Adani to build a rail line for the Carmichael coal project is akin to supporting big tobacco to transport hundreds of tonnes of tobacco to market, an eminent former surgeon and the chair of Doctors for the Environment Australia, Prof Kingsley Faulkner, said.Faulkner made the comment in a letter to the chair of the government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (Naif), Sharon Warburton, in which he urged her and other board members to rule out an investment loan to build the rail line from the mine at the Galilee basin in Queensland to the Abbot Point port.

He wrote that the Carmichael mine posed a “grave danger to public health both in Australia and globally”, given coalmines leading to a resurgence among mine workers of a chronic, irreversible and previously eradicated lung condition known as black lung disease.

The pollution from coal also causes childhood asthma, heart and lung disease, and some cancers, he added.

“Going ahead with it will send a terrible message to the world – [that] we in Australia really don’t care about the planet, or its inhabitants,” Faulkner wrote.

“Additionally, it will create an infrastructure for the potential development of up to eight other coalmines in the region.”…….

A number of high-profile doctors and researchers were signatories to Faulkner’s letter, including leading child and public health researcher Prof Fiona Stanley and the former chair of the Western Sydney Local Health District Board, Prof Stephen Leeder. Both are members of Doctors for the Environment Australia’s scientific advisory committee…….https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/jun/06/medical-experts-say-lending-to-adani-is-the-same-as-supporting-big-tobacco

June 7, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health | Leave a comment

Adani coal mine dispute: it’s not only about money, and climate: there’s also black lung disease for miners

Does Queensland really want Adani’s dirty, black lung inducing jobs? Independent Australia  David Shearman 30 May 2017On top of ecological destruction and $1 billion in taxpayer subsidies, will the re-emergence of black lung disease, due to government regulatory incompetence, be the final nail in Adani’s Carmichael mine coffin? Dr David Shearman reports.

ON A DAY WHEN a Queensland Parliamentary Inquiry finds catastrophic administrative failures resulted in the reappearance in pneumoconiosis (black lung disease) – a serious but preventable disease – Queenslanders should be asking themselves some important questions.

In particular, whether their State and Federal governments have the competence to deliver the Adani Carmichael mine with its ephemeral jobs and riches or whether the collateral damage to them and to Queensland is likely to be too great.

The reappearance of black lung disease in our wealthy, advanced country is an indictment of health monitoring in the coal industry, for which the Queensland Government has the ultimate responsibility to set health standards. The Parliamentary ‘Inquiry into the re-identification of Coal Workers’ Pneumoconiosis in Queensland’ identified “major system failures at virtually all levels” and this includes the medical assessments.

Parliamentarians who fondle coal and spruik it as “cheap” need to recognise the true cost of coal lies in the suffering of workers, and the community from air pollution from its mining and combustion. Coal is heavily subsidised by the health services for the cost of care of a significant proportion of the 3,000 Australians who die each year from air pollution.

In promoting this mine, the Queensland and Federal governments have already dismissed the likely demise of the Great Barrier Reef, the significant impact on world greenhouse emissions and the climate of Australia, the increasingly poor image depicted in the international media of Queensland and the concerns of our Pacific Island neighbours about new coal mines. In the face of black lung, the competence of the Queensland Government to regulate and monitor the development and running of this vast mine has to be questioned. It will be difficult to find any reassurance.

Imposed on the Adani mine development are 270 conditions that will need monitoring and supervision by the Queensland Government. Many of these relate to water security, because inland Queensland with its probable drying climate has human and agricultural demands on its water. Unlimited use of water from the Great Artesian Basin is to be allowed in the face of concerns expressed by an eminent scientific committee. These included the impact from possible pressure reduction in bores and impacts on existing settlements.

The possible health consequences of the Adani mine have been detailed by Doctors for the Environment Australia (DEA) in a fact sheet with a foreword by Professor Fiona Stanley.

Let us look at the record of successive Queensland governments…..https://independentaustralia.net/life/life-display/does-queensland-really-want-adanis-dirty-black-lung-inducing-jobs,10348

May 31, 2017 Posted by | health, Queensland | Leave a comment

Turnbull government budget ignores health impacts of climate change

Shortsighted Budget 2017 ignores health impacts of climate change, Independent Australia  Kristine Barnden 19 May 2017, The Turnbull Government has once again prioritised growing the economy over human lives, writes Dr Kris Barnden.

ACTION TO PROTECT AUSTRALIA from climate change was a policy free zone in the 2017 Budget. Despite strong scientific and economic consensus on the urgent need to transition away from fossil fuels, our government has prioritized efforts to grow the economy using a business as usual approach.

Doctors have been speaking out about the adverse health effects of climate change, as well as the health co-benefits of policies aimed at mitigating and adapting to climate change. In Australia, air pollution from coal fired power stations contributes a significant proportion of the over 3000 deaths per annum from pollution and a plea has been made by doctors for a rapid transition away from coal fired power.

Agriculture is another area where actions to reduce green house gas emissions are likely to be associated with multiple benefits, including health. In last week’s Budget, agriculture and regional Australia are seen as winners only from expenditure on rail. However, we need to recognize that agriculture is an important contributor to greenhouse emissions and also extremely vulnerable to their effects as recognized by the farming industry. These factors are budgetary items and need to be built into national financial policy. Indeed as President Obama has noted, food security is a world issue and we carry responsibility as a food exporter……….

Agriculture, the environment, the economy and human health interact at many levels, and we face significant difficulties on all fronts. All will be affected by climate change, and we cannot afford to consider each in isolation. We need strong leadership, and the ability to look beyond short term political and ideological considerations to longer term gains.

Dr Kristine Barnden is a member of the management committee of Doctors for the Environment Australiahttps://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/budget-2017-ignores-health-impacts-of-climate-change,10314

May 20, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, health, politics | Leave a comment

Finally, recognition for Australia’s atomic veterans

Atomic veterans to be recognised after 61 years, Mandurah Mail, 8 May 17,  The service of veterans exposed to British atomic testing off the coast of Western Australia in the 1950s is to be recognised in the federal budget on Tuesday.

On Sunday Canning MP Andrew Hastie announced $133 million would be spent giving the men who served in the Montebello Islands, where three nuclear weapons tests took place in 1952 and 1956, access to Department of Veterans Affairs gold cards.

Mr Hastie said the gold cards, which entitled the veterans to free public and private health care, were an acknowledgment the men had served in dangerous circumstances.

“It says to them that the Australian government, on behalf of the Australian people, care about them and are going to see their responsibility to care for them through,” he said.

“For these men it is recognition they did serve in hazardous conditions, that they were exposed to nuclear radiation after atomic testing, so for them it means a lot, especially since quite a few of them have suffered from cancer.”

Only 51 of the 89 servicemen who were conscripted to assist with the atomic tests are still alive.

Half of those who have since died succumbed to cancer……..

Many of the veterans said they had not been told of the dangers of nuclear radiation and were not issued protective gear.

“We got up there and didn’t even know what was happening, all we knew is that something big was happening so we got out on the upper deck and the count down came down,” Australian Ex-Services Atomic Survivors Association secretary Jim Marlow said.

“We were told to turn our backs, so we turned our backs and there was a blinding flash and a push of wind and a whole lot of noise and we turned back again and saw the smoke going up.”

Mr Marlow said he was back working in the ship 10 minutes after the blast.

He said the survivors association had been lobbying for recognition for more than a decade. http://www.mandurahmail.com.au/story/4647184/atomic-veterans-to-be-recognised-after-61-years/

May 10, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, health, weapons and war | Leave a comment