Australian news, and some related international items

June 18 Energy News



¶ “Global warming cooks up ‘a different world’ over 3 decades” • We were warned. On June 23, 1988, a sultry day in Washington, Dr James Hansen told Congress that global warming was not approaching – it had already arrived. Thirty years later, it’s clear that Hansen and other doomsayers were right. And the change has been sweeping. [The Denver Post]

James Hansen (Marshall Ritzel, The Associated Press)

Science and Technology:

¶ In a world first, Siemens is opening a £1.5-million pilot project in Oxfordshire employing ammonia as a form of energy storage. The proof-of-concept facility will turn electricity, water, and air into ammonia without releasing carbon emissions. The ammonia can be stored and burned for electricity, sold as a fuel, or used for industrial purposes. []

¶ Tesla’s cobalt usage will soon be a thing of the past if Elon Musk has his way. And…

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June 19, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Strong earthquake shakes Osaka: Officials in neighboring Fukui Prefecture say all 15 nuclear reactors are still functioning — Fukushima 311 Watchdogs

Strong earthquake shakes Osaka All but 1 or 2 of these are supposedly shut down since 3-11. Just before 8 am local time a magnitude 6.1 earthquake struck northern Osaka. It’s categorized as a six-minus on a scale of zero to seven on Japan’s seismic intensity scale. No tsunami warning has been issued. Hyogo, Kyoto, […]

via Strong earthquake shakes Osaka: Officials in neighboring Fukui Prefecture say all 15 nuclear reactors are still functioning — Fukushima 311 Watchdogs

June 19, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Australia starts slow on EVs, but could overtake global market — RenewEconomy

BNEF says EV sales in Australia have started slowly but will finish quick and will beat the global average by 2040, after passing tipping points on affordability in 2025. More intriguingly, the EV fleet will create a “behind the motor” storage market as big as Snowy 2.0.

via Australia starts slow on EVs, but could overtake global market — RenewEconomy

June 19, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A 228MW Victorian wind farm to go ahead as big business snaps up cheap green power — RenewEconomy

Macquarie Capital sells two 40% stakes in Lal Lal Wind Farm, which is reported to have off-take deal with “two Australian industrials.”

via A 228MW Victorian wind farm to go ahead as big business snaps up cheap green power — RenewEconomy

June 19, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

NAB to play middle man with investors and large-scale wind, solar — RenewEconomy

NAB launches $200m Low Carbon Shared Portfolio, backed by senior loans to seven wind and large-scale solar farms, and with a $90m cornerstone investment from the CEFC.

via NAB to play middle man with investors and large-scale wind, solar — RenewEconomy

June 19, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Australian govt rushing decision on nuclear waste dumping, avoiding Senate Inquiry report, and before next election


With the Senate not reporting on this until August 14, it is clear that this selection will be a rushed job. It is no doubt the government’s intention that the Senate Inquiry should be irrelevant.


Race to lock in nuclear dump before federal election  MICHAEL OWEN SA Bureau Chief Adelaide  @mjowen18 June 18  A site for the country’s first ­nuclear waste dump will be settled before the next federal election and will likely be in South Australia’s mid-north, Resources Minister Matt Canavan says.

A ballot to gauge community support in the small towns of Kimba and Hawker, about 450km north of Adelaide, for the facility will be held on August 20, Senator Canavan said.

“The decision will be made in the second half of this year … one way or another we need to make a decision,” he said. “We do not want this overlapping with a federal election. We have to find a solution.”

Senator Canavan told The Australian that economic benefits, including 45 direct jobs and a $10 million community fund, were behind support of more than 60 per cent in the communities affected by the proposal, following 18 months of consultation.

But Peter Woolfoord, president of a community group ­opposed to the facility, said Kimba was “completely divided” and insisted a waste repository should not be on agricultural land where “it poses unacceptable risks to our industry”.

Centre Alliance senator Rex Patrick said the site selection process “looks like an absolute sham” and claimed the Turnbull government was “determined to rush to select one of the South Australian sites despite there being a divided community”.

Senator Patrick said the government should properly engage with the remote mining town of Leonora, 240km north of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia, on its bid to host the facility.

Senator Canavan said there was already broad community support for three South Australian properties — two near Kimba, on the Eyre Peninsula, and Wallerberdina Station, near Hawker in the ­Flinders Ranges.

He said an “aggressive” push by the Azark company and the Shire of Leonora for a site on Clover Downs pastoral station, about 20km northwest of the central WA mining town, was a “plan B”.

“They want to run the facility themselves, which we haven’t ruled out … their initial scope was more focused on also taking overseas radioactive waste, which we definitely do not want,” Senator Canavan said.

“If we can’t get the support in South Australia we’ll most likely return to this other option (Leonora) as a plan B.”

The federal government has tried to find a site for a national radioactive waste management facility for more than a decade.

June 18, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

South Australian Premier Marshall’s pro nuclear stance, in agreement with nuclear stooge MP Troy Bell

Marshall still open to nuclear power In Daily, Tom Richardson  ADELAIDE April 11, 2018  Marshall today embarked on his third regional tour since seizing office at last month’s election, visiting the South-East seat of Mount Gambier where Liberal-turned-Independent MP Troy Bell is a firm advocate for nuclear power.

Marshall and Bell broke bread this morning, their second face-to-face meeting since election day.

Bell quit the party after being charged with dishonesty offences following an ICAC investigation. He is pleading not guilty in an ongoing court case……….

“I’ve always worked with Troy Bell… it’s quite obvious we share a lot of common aspirations for the people of the South-East,” he said.

One of those aspirations could yet be the establishment of a nuclear generator after Marshall last year flagged his interest in considering the industry, despite Royal Commissioner Kevin Scarce rejecting it as a commercially viable option “in the foreseeable future”.

“There will be a time when it may become viable, and desperate times call for desperate solutions – and we are in a desperate situation,” Marshall told media in February 2017.

Bell, who spearheaded the Liberals’ South-East fracking moratorium before he left the party-room, is a strong advocate for nuclear power and told InDaily he was “absolutely happy to lead the discussion” about establishing a local industry.

Asked if he would advocate for a nuclear generator in the South-East, he said: “A small modular one – yes definitely.”….

June 18, 2018 Posted by | politics, South Australia | Leave a comment

USA nuclear authorities rename nuclear waste to make it sound safer: so do Australia’s

Paul Waldon  Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 18 June 18
The American Department Of Energy’s (DOE), June 4th 2018 proposal to re-label (reclassify or rename) Hanford’s highly radioactive tank waste so it will not have to comply with the time consuming requirements of treating or disposing of such waste.
And if the DOE gets their way, high level radioactive waste “residue” will become “Waste Incidental to Reprocessing,” or WIR. This also means, radioactive waste in Hanford’s leaky tanks will only be cemented or grouted over, and will continue to purge its dangerous contents into the neighbouring Columbia river.
America’s irresponsible attempt to reclassify high grade radioactive waste is reminiscing of Australia labeling high grade waste as intermediate, and for those people that can’t remember it was only on the eve of WIPP’s inauguration that the residents of Carlsbad were adroit to the fact that radioactive waste to be accepted was of a greater classification at their unseen backdoor than indicated coming through the documented front-door. 

So is Australia building a backdoor for waste abandonment?

June 18, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Fatal consequences for the nation that first strikes with nuclear weapons

Paper Reveals Amount Of Nuclear Weapons Fatal To Own Citizens Of The Firing Nation    By Athena Yenko Tech Times 

In a scenario where the United States launches a nuclear attack against a country, Americans won’t be spared from the fatal consequences of that same strike.

The first thing that comes to mind when discussing a nuclear war is how it could obliterate the target country. A new paper, therefore, examined the consequences of a nuclear strike on the very nation firing the weapons.

The Consequences Of A Nuclear Strike

The repercussions were imagined in “best-case scenario,” where the target nation would not engage in any counterattack. For example, if the United States fired a nuclear weapon, its very own people would suffer an effect called “nuclear autumn” or environmental blowback.

There would be a drastic drop in temperature because of the “soot” or chemical remnants from nuclear blasts that would block the sun from reaching the Earth’s surface. A decreased in precipitation would follow.

As days go by, there would be an increased ultraviolet radiation because of the damaged atmosphere. Eventually, starvation would happen as a result of non-functioning supply chains.

“If we use 1,000 nuclear warheads against an enemy and no one retaliates, we will see about 50 times more Americans die than did on 9/11 due to the after-effects of our own weapons,” reads one example given by Joshua Pearce, one of the authors of the paper.

The paper essentially warned that any nation who plans to launch a nuclear war must first assess whether it could survive the problems of its own making.

A Nuclear War Perspective

According to the paper, Americans would only be saved from the nuclear autumn if the United States would limit its strike to a use of 100 nuclear missiles. The problem, however, is that countries such as the United States and Russia possess thousands of nuclear arsenals.

In its calculation, the paper assumed that the United States would launch nuclear bombs with yields amounting to 15 kilotons. This would just be the same amount of explosive dropped over Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

However, the nuclear bombs owned by the countries at present are five to 25 times more lethal than what was used during the World War II. The explosive yields of nuclear weapons at present range from 100 to 500 kilotons.

The largest, however, has an explosive yield of 5,000 kilotons. The United States, in fact, has one with an explosive yield of roughly 1,400 kilotons.

Amount Fatal To Americans If The US Initiates Nuclear Attack

The paper published in the journal Safety on June 14 calculated the potential damage if the United States were to fire 7,000 nuclear missiles, 1,000 nuclear missiles, and 100 nuclear missiles. The nuclear attacks were imagined to be launched against China.

The 7,000 warheads would produce 30 trillion grams of soot. It could result in a nuclear autumn on a worldwide level and, later on, could starve as much as 5 million Americans. The 1,000 nuclear arsenal fired would produce 12 trillion grams of soot, which could starve 140,000 Americans.

Meanwhile, Americans would be saved from starvation if the United States were to fire 100 nuclear missiles. On the other hand, it could kill as much as 30 million people in China, which in return, could set off a counterattack.

An Appeal To Department Of Defense

The authors of the study argued that there would be no logical reason for any country to maintain nuclear arsenals greater than 100. They now call for the U.S. Department of Defense to include the potential environmental blowback to the American people when designing its nuclear policies

“The U.S. government should greatly increase focus on producing alternative food to provide for survivors in the case of nuclear war,” said David Denkenberger, one of the authors of the paper.

More importantly, the authors of the paper call for worldwide country leaders to reduce the nuclear weapon arsenals they keep in their possessions.

June 18, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Rural community in Czech Republic votes overwhelmingly against hosting a nuclear waste facility


The inhabitants of Jaroměřice nad Rokytnou, a village in the Vysočina region between Bohemia and Moravia, voted overwhelmingly against the construction of a nuclear waste storage site on their land in a referendum on Saturday.

Jaroměřice nad Rokytnou is one of nine Czech locations being considered by experts for the purposes of a nuclear waste store. About 45 percent of the village’s inhabitants took part in the vote, which makes the referendum valid.

June 18, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Concerns about the safety of Holtec nuclear waste storage casks

What is Holtec? Company touts experience in nuclear storage, Carlsbad Current-Argus, 16 June 18

    CARLSBAD — A proposed temporary storage facility for thousands of tons of spent nuclear fuel in southeastern New Mexico was met by waves of protests from environmentalist and activists.

Many cited the perceived danger of storing the fuel on an interim basis, when a permanent repository was not in existence.

Some worried about radiation leaking out of the storage casks meant to hold the waste for about 40 years, per the license application……….

What’s at risk?   Jimmy Carlile, health, safety and environment and regulatory supervisor at Fasken Oil, an oil extraction company based in Midland, Texas, testified before New Mexico lawmakers last month that if the facility leaked, it could have devastating impacts on the state’s extraction industry.

He argued extraction is an essential industry in New Mexico and west Texas and cannot be put at risk of radioactive contamination.

“Any release of high-level nuclear waste cannot be positive for the Permian Basin community regardless of what side of the state line you’re on,” he said……..

Linda Squire, a dairy farmer from Hagerman, said a radiological event could cripple the local dairy industry, which she argued generates 17,000 area jobs and is an essential part of the region’s economy.

“We are very concerned about a worst-case scenario. Bad things can happen if you let your guard down,” Squire said. “If there were a worst-case scenario, the beef would be unsaleable, the milk would be unsaleable.”

June 18, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Monte Bello Islands remain a nuclear radiation risk

Montebello Islands are a nuclear radiation risk, but boaters and campers flout the rules, ABC North West WA By Susan Standen , 17 June 18

June 18, 2018 Posted by | environment, Western Australia | Leave a comment

Institute of Public Affairs aims for both nuclear power and privatising the ABC

Steve Dale shared a link. Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 18 June 18
If the ABC was privatised, I think the public would hear even less about our nuclear fight. The IPA supports nuke power and apparently the privatisation of the ABC. From the following article:

“In Mayo, the council motion has handed Ms Sharkie a small gift. There will be interest in what Ms Downer, who comes from the IPA, has to say about how she would like to see the future of the ABC.”

June 18, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

Michelle Grattan: expect more government bullying to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC)

The threat to the ABC is not sale but more bullying  The Conversation By Michelle Grattan 

June 18, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, media | Leave a comment

Activists hold jamboree to organise beyond coal and gas

GLW author Margaret Gleeson June 14, 2018

‘The burgeoning movements against coal and gas projects,
to defend the Great Barrier Reef and to conserve precious water resources
were boosted by the Beyond Coal and Gas Jamboree
held on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland over May 31 to June 3.

‘More than 350 activists from around Australia joined
international guests from the Pacific, the US and India
at the fourth Beyond Coal and Gas gathering.

Participants included Indigenous campaigners
against fracking in the Kimberley, Western Australia; the Northern Territory; and
against coal mining on traditional lands in the Galilee Basin, in Queensland. …

‘All age groups were present but youth, particularly Indigenous people and women,
were well represented, …

Indigenous campaigns

‘The opening session, “Indigenous rising: protecting country and organising our people”, heard how
Indigenous communities are heading up the fight to defend their lands from coal and coal seam gas mining.

Adrian Burragubba from the Wangan and Jagalingou Traditional Owners Council (W&J) spoke
of their opposition since 2012 of the Adani Carmichael coal project in the Galilee Basin,
and the court challenges they have faced. The current challenge is
against Adani’s bogus Indigenous Land Use Agreement.
The mine cannot go ahead until this issue is resolved.
If the Federal Court rules in Adani’s favour, the W&J will call for a judicial review
and have pledged to take it all the way to the High Court. …

Micklo Corpus a Traditional owner from Yaruru people in Broome, Western Australia,
has been campaigning since 2014 against gas company Buru Energy,
where many of the gas wells are located in wetlands.
The government is claiming veto over land to which his people have exclusive rights.

‘“The gas mining company’s offer is only for 40 years financial benefit,” Corpus said.
“I say ‘put the money back in your pockets’, we have 40,000 years to safeguard.”

‘The opening session also included speakers from the Indigenous youth climate network SEED,
who work with remote communities facing extractive industries.

Yorta Yorta woman Karrina Nolan spoke of communities having to choose
between safeguarding country and meeting basic needs.
“Communities in poverty shouldn’t have to give into mining to get services
which should be provided by government anyway,” she said. … ‘

Read more of Margaret‘s comprehensive, well-researched & inspiring account,
including Sections on Victorious Campaigns & the View from India re Adani:

June 18, 2018 Posted by | aboriginal issues, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming | Leave a comment