Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Looking back–for just one day | GreenWorld

Still got a long way to go….Vogtle Units 3 (left) and 4, July 30, 2015.

At GreenWorld, we like to look forward. Forward to the day that nuclear power is a bad but fading memory and our planet is powered as safely, cleanly and affordably as possible with renewable energy and advanced 21st century efficiency, storage and grid technologies. Forward to that day of a nuclear-free, carbon-free energy system.
It’s a day that we believe is coming, and is coming sooner than could have been believed even five years ago. But while we believe that day is inevitable, the timing is important: if it comes too late to turn back the worst effects of climate chaos, then its inevitableness won’t matter. And it won’t come on its own in time. As we’ve said here often, it will take all of us who believe in that future to act to bring it about in time.
Nor will that day just suddenly happen. It is the product of a transition, a transition that already has begun but that is still in its infancy and whose stumbling steps could be blocked or halted for years or even decades at any time. Chronicling–and urging along–that transition is the purpose of GreenWorld. So, naturally, we tend to look forward.
As we enter our third year of publication next week, however, it is appropriate to both look back for just one day and to turn our focus toward you, our readers. Who you are, and, of the 89 posts we published last year (about 1.7 per week, if you’re counting) on topics ranging from solar power in Indiana, Fukushima’s aftermath, the growing interest and viability of electricity storage highlighted by Tesla’s release of the consumer-oriented PowerWall, Russia’s increasingly aggressive efforts to market nuclear power abroad, to continuing coverage of the economically threatened reactors owned by Exelon, Entergy and FirstEnergy, what you found most interesting in 2015.
The most-read article on GreenWorld this past year pretty much sums up the state of nuclear power in 2015. Titled Vogtle: at $65 billion and counting, it’s a case study of nuclear power’s staggeringly awful economics, the piece examines the cost overruns and construction delays of America’s symbol of the “nuclear renaissance.” While the focus of the piece is on the Vogtle reactors being built, slowly and expensively, near the Georgia/South Carolina border, the fundamental conclusion–that the economics of not only Vogtle but nuclear power generally don’t add up, that nuclear reactors are not only too costly to build but even to operate–permeated throughout GreenWorld, and the real world, during the year...

more: Looking back–for just one day | GreenWorld

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Gunter: Cheap? Clean? Nuclear power is neither - Roanoke Times: Letters

The audacity of Michael Leigh to describe nuclear energy as cheap, clean and safe was breathtaking ("Want cheap, clean fuel? Go nuclear," Dec. 13 commentary)
Construction costs for a single new nuclear power plant are ballooning to $12 billion. They are so expensive that the owners won’t even pay for them. Those now under construction in Georgia and South Carolina are being subsidized in advance by ratepayers...
Leigh would like to keep Virginia pristine. He presumably favors the continued ban there on uranium mining. But the fuel for his nuclear plants will have to come from somewhere. Mining and processing uranium not only adds to the costs that Leigh omits, these processes release CO2, radiation and heavy metals into the environment, and consume vast quantities of often scarce water supplies.
Costs of decommissioning are also estimated in the billions of dollars. Nuclear power never was and never will be  "too cheap to meter...”

MORE: Gunter: Cheap? Clean? Nuclear power is neither - Roanoke Times: Letters

International Specialist at
Beyond Nuclear www.BeyondNuclear.org

Saturday, December 26, 2015

nukespeak :: New [Radiation] Protection Action Guidelines Will Leave You Chilled to the Bone – Nuclear World Network

Dr. Rosalie Bertel
Dr. Rosalie Bertel
In Dr. Bertell’s 1986 speech, she candidly describes the two tactics that she used to report radiological incidents and the release of radionuclides into the environment. 
“It’s become even worse of late because in order to impress the public with how insignificant the exposures are, there seem to be two tactics. One tactic is to make the numbers small. So if you’ve been in the business of reporting radiation exposure or accidents for awhile, you’ll remember that it used to be in terms of maybe eighty millirem at Three Mile Island, or a hundred millirem as background radiation, or 5,000 millirem permitted to workers per year. It’s now changed so that instead of eighty millirem it would be eight-tenths of a millisievert. Eight-tenths is a littler number. Instead of workers getting 5,000 millirems per year they now get fifty millisieverts. So they changed the unit to make it a hundred times bigger which makes the numbers a hundred times smaller. So that’s one tactic.
The other tactic is to give everything in percent so that you’re told `well, there’s a little bit of iodine 131 in your milk, but it’s O.K., it’s only a small percentage of the permissible level.’ Now you’re not really told where that permissible level came from, or who said you could have radioactive material in your milk and it was O.K. But to even express it as a small percentage of a permissible level is very deceptive because those permissible levels are extraordinarily high.”
Since this speech was given, there have been many more radiation disasters in the US and abroad, most notably, Fukushima. 

Recently, the White House dramatically raised “permissible” levels of radiation in our drinking water and soil. This was done without any input or discussion from you or me.
By raising permissible levels the administration seeks to create a “new normal”  for our radiation exposure. 
Nuclear Orwellian Doublespeak
Deliberately twisting words and using vague language to confuse and mislead people is part and parcel for the nuclear PR mill.
Deliberately twisting words and using vague language to confuse and mislead people is part and parcel for the nuclear PR mill.
It’s a huge win for the nuclear industry because it allows them to legally say that everything is within “permissible levels.” However, the permissible levels “allowed” by the White House is equivalent to Orwellian doublespeak... 

read: New Protection Action Guidelines Will Leave You Chilled to the Bone – Nuclear World Network

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Can Nuclear Power Slow Down Climate Change? An analysis of nuclear greenhouse gas emissions | The Helen Caldicott Foundation

Can Nuclear Power Slow Down Climate Change  (click title to access link to PDF of full report)
By Jan Willem Storm van Leeuwen Ceedata Consultancy
Commissioned by the World Information Service on Energy (WISE) Amsterdam, The Netherlands, November 2015
Supporting organizations:
Sortir du Nucléaire, France, Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF), Nuclear Information & Resource Service (NIRS), USA, Ecodefense, Russia, Global 2000 (Friends of the Earth), Austria, Bürgerinitiative Lüchow-Dannenberg, Germany, Folkkampanjen mot Kärnkraft-Kärnvapen, Sweden
This report is sponsored by: the Greens in the European Parliament
The author would like to thank Mali Lightfoot, Executive Director of the Helen Caldicott Foundation, for her valuable suggestions and comments.
Jan Willem Storm van Leeuwen, MSc storm@ceedata.nl
With this study WISE hopes to contribute to a thorough debate about the best solutions to tackle climate change. Nuclear energy is part of the current global energy system. The question is whether the role of nuclear power should be increased or halted. In order to be able to fruitfully discuss this we should at least know what the contribution of nuclear power could possibly be.

Summary and conclusions (for complete report click on the link  above or go directly to the report on the WISE site which is downloadable)
Starting point
Nuclear power is claimed to be nearly carbon-free and indispensable for mitigating climate change as a result of anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases.
Assuming that nuclear power really does not emit carbon dioxide CO2 nor other greenhouse gases (GHGs), how large is the present nuclear mitigation share and how large could it become in the future? Could the term ‘indispensable’ in this context be quantfied? These issues are assessed from a physical point of view, economic aspects are left outside the scope of this assessment.
How large is the present nuclear mitigation share?
The global GHG emissions comprise a number of different gases and sources. Weighted by the global warming potential of the various GHGs 61% of the emissions were caused by CO2 from burning of fossil fuels for energy generation. Nuclear power could displace fossil-fuelled electricity generation, so hypothetically the maximum nuclear mitigation share would be 61% if the global energy supply were to be fully electric and fully nuclear.
In 2014 the nuclear contribution to the global usable energy supply was 1.6% and consequently the nuclear mitigation share was 1.0%.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) asserts that the nuclear contribution to the global energy supply was 4.6% in 2014. However, this figure turns out to be based on a thermodynamically inaccurate statistical trick using virtual energy quantities.
How large could the nuclear mitigation to climate change become in the future according to the nuclear industry?
We found no hard figures on this issue, for that reason this study analyses the mitigation consequences of the envisioned developments of global nuclear generating capacity. During the past years the International Atomic Energy Agency and the nuclear industry, represented by the World Nuclear Association (WNA), published numerous scenarios of global nuclear generating capacity in the future, measured in gigawatt- electric GWe. Four recent scenarios are assessed in this study, as these can be considered to be typical of the views within the nuclear industry...

more: The Helen Caldicott Foundation | Can Nuclear Power Slow Down Climate Change? An analysis of nuclear greenhouse gas emissions.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Panic vs. Leadership – the international perception of the Energiewende | Arne Jungjohann

If you are active on Twitter among the energy and climate geeks like me, you run across international coverage on Germany’s energy transition almost every day. Compare that discussion with the original domestic Energiewende debate, a big perception gap opens up.

In single cases, the international reporting is excellent (see for instance National Geographic). Some of the positive Energiewende reporting leaves the reader with the impression as if Germany was a lonely leader on a path to decarbonization of power production through the usage of distributed renewables. But of course, Germany is not going alone. The country has many ambitious allies around the globe like Denmark or California, which have even more ambitious goals than my home country of Germany.

However, the international Energiewende reporting makes me want to rub my eyes. If one is to believe those reports, industry is fleeing because energy costs are going through the roof. Since Germany’s supposed panic reaction to Fukushima and the shutdown of nuclear reactors in 2011, the country is allegedly increasingly dependent on power imports, and its grid is less stable than before. And those are just a few of the unfounded claims...

more: Panic vs. Leadership – the international perception of the Energiewende | Arne Jungjohann

Victory in Paris highlights a year of stunning setbacks for nuclear power – Let's keep it up in 2016! | Support NIRS!

December 20, 2015

Dear NIRS Supporter,

A few days ago, I got back home from the global climate change summit in France. It is more clear to me than ever that, despite all the odds, we are on the verge of winning the fight for a safe energy future. Yet again, the moral authority of people mobilizing around the world broke through to our leaders and forced them to do something they didn’t plan to do just a few days before: sign an agreement of nearly all the world’s nations with ambitious goals to prevent the worst impacts of climate change.

And there is a piece of this we can own together. The first global climate agreement does not promote, endorse, or rely on nuclear power. Despite intense, incessant lobbying by the nuclear industry and the near-exclusion of anti-nuclear voices in the negotiations, our “Don’t Nuke the Climate!” message won the day.

At the climate conference, we watchdogged the negotiators, exposed the corporate corruption and lies, and delivered petitions from 524 organizations around the world opposed to nuclear power as a false solution to the climate crisis. And we joined the mass demonstrations in Paris on the last day of the summit, with a bright and visible presence.

Our job is not over. Far, far from it. Nuclear power promoters are going to keep on pushing in the coming years to divert the climate agreement into a radioactive free-for-all, both here in the U.S. and at the UN. There is also nothing in the treaty that prevents countries from going down the nuclear rabbit hole. But it’s clear we won this round.

Please support NIRS this holiday season and help ensure we win the next round too! Because we are a lean organization, your tax-deductible donation, of any size, doesn't cover bloated administrative costs--it goes where you want and need it to go: to our campaigns for a nuclear-free future.

With your help, we have had other important, hard-won victories this year. In August, not only did the EPA strip incentives for nuclear power out of the nation’s first real climate policy—the Clean Power Plan—it confirmed that renewable energy can replace nuclear power quickly and cheaply enough, and still reduce carbon emissions. The nuclear industry has hung its whole future on people believing the lie that nuclear power is our only hope to avert climate catastrophe. Getting the EPA to base America’s first real climate regulation on nuclear power was a fight they had to win. We stopped them in their tracks.

And the wave of reactor closures is growing! So far this fall, the permanent shutdowns of two more reactors were announced. Entergy says it will close its FitzPatrick reactor in New York in 2016, as well as the Pilgrim reactor near Boston as soon as 2017 or 2019. Along with closing Vermont Yankee at the end of last year, this means three dangerous Fukushima-style reactors are shutting down. NIRS has worked with grassroots groups to shut Vermont Yankee, FitzPatrick and Pilgrim for the last three years, and it proves what we can accomplish as a movement. With smart, strategic organizing and dogged grassroots activism, we can beat the nuclear industry and build a safe, sustainable energy future.

Nor have we forgotten about the other reasons nuclear never has been and never will be an acceptable “alternative” to fossil fuels. It is too dirty, and too dangerous.

We are gearing up for the big fight at the root of the industry: nuclear waste, the million-year legacy of a half-century of nuclear power. We mobilized thousands of people across the country this year to stop the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump in Nevada. For the fourth year in a row, we blocked Congress from pushing their even more dangerous alternative to Yucca: consolidated “parking lot” storage sites for nuclear waste.

This fall, we launched a major “Stop Fukushima Freeways!”campaign to block mass transportation of nuclear waste across the country. The industry’s push for one or both of these terrible ideas—Yucca Mountain or “parking lot” dumps—will be even more forceful in the coming years. Some expect nuclear waste dumping to become Congress’ next Keystone XL project for attacking environmentalists. So we are laying the groundwork for that fight now, and building networks of local groups across the country to oppose the transportation of nuclear waste through their communities.

Despite our victory on the Clean Power Plan, the industry still has our leaders’ ears at the very top levels of government. And they are keeping the door open for the nuclear industry’s dirty deals and radioactive schemes. Just before the global climate conference, the White House hosted a Nuclear Power Summit in Washington, pushing the fantasy of radioactive solutions to the climate crisis. And on the first day of the Paris conference, President Obama held a press conference with a team of nuclear investors to promote their bankrupt vision. Even though the “Nuclear Renaissance” has utterly failed, the industry has still convinced President Obama to waste billions of dollars on this disastrous technology.

The industry’s rhetoric is getting increasingly desperate and personal. Climate-scientist-cum-nuclear-power-promoter James Hansen visited Paris--not to amplify the call for urgent and immediate climate action--but to step up his calls for "next-generation" nuclear reactors and for donors to stop funding environmental groups that are anti-nuclear. That's us. The industry also rolled out a new front group called “Nuclear for Climate,” which handed out thousands of copies of a book attacking anti-nuclear activists and blaming us for the climate crisis.

Send the nuclear industry and its backers a message: we won't be intimidated. Support NIRS with your tax-deductible donation today.

Needless to say, their efforts to intimidate activists are backfiring. In fact, they have given us a clear sign of how close we are to winning. Greenpeace International’s Kumi Naidoo reminded activists in a speech last week—in which he broadened the call for divestment to include nuclear, as well as fossil fuels—of the famous adage attributed to Gandhi about the path to victory:

First they ignore you.
Then they laugh at you.
Then they fight you.
And then you win.

While the nuclear industry’s shameless attacks are not proving effective, they are definitely not ignoring us or laughing at us. They are fighting us. And as long as we keep on fighting smarter, and harder, and with all of our passion and unity and vision for a safer, cleaner, sustainable and just world … we are going to win.

We look forward to celebrating more victories for a nuclear-free, carbon-free world with you in 2016. We rely on both your activism and your financial support to achieve these victories--we can't do it without both. We gratefully appreciate every donation, of any size, you can give us at the end of this year, to make sure we hit the ground running in the New Year.

No Nukes!

Tim Judson
Executive Director
Nuclear Information and Resource Service

P.S. If you'd like to donate using PayPal, please use our Razoo fundraising site here. And if you'd prefer to donate by check, please make it out to NIRS and send to 6930 Carroll Avenue, #340, Takoma Park, MD 20912. Finally, you can also donate with your credit/debit card by phone during normal business hours by calling Denise Jakobsberg at 301-270-6477. Thank you so much!

Stay Informed:

NIRS on the webhttp://www.nirs.org

GreenWorld: (NIRS' blog chronicling nuclear issues and the transition to a nuclear-free, carbon-free energy system) http://www.safeenergy.org

NIRS on Facebook:




NIRS on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/nirsnet

NIRS on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/nirsnet

Please note: NIRS never sells, rents, trades, or otherwise makes our e-mail lists available to other organizations or individuals for any reason. 

source: http://org2.salsalabs.com/o/5502/t/0/blastContent.jsp?email_blast_KEY=1351035

you can't nuke global warming!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (US): The experts on nuclear power and climate change - World Nuclear Industry Status Report

The stock market did not hear the call. The claim of four climate mousquetaires at a side event of the Paris climate talks that “nuclear has tremendous potential to be part of the solution to climate change” was lost in space. One day after that enthusiastic statement by former NASA scientist James Hansen, a member of the illustrious quartet, the share value of the largest nuclear operator in the world, the French state-controlled Électricité de France (EDF), dropped to its historic low, a 42-percent plunge since the beginning of the year and an 84-percent meltdown in eight years. On Monday, December 7, Euronext ejected EDF, “pillar of the Paris Stock Exchange", from France’s key stock market index, known as CAC40. On Tuesday, December 8, EDF shares lost another four percent of their value. Two days later, the trade union representatives at the Central Enterprise Committee of EDF—unanimously and for the first time—launched an official “economic alert procedure” considering the “seriousness of the situation.”

These latest developments come as no surprise to analysts familiar with the international nuclear industry. Credit-rating agencies have warned for years that the launch of nuclear new-build projects are considered “credit-negative.” In October 2015, investment bank Investec advised clients to sell EDF shares amid fears that its connection with the nuclear plant project at Hinkley Point in the UK could put payouts to shareholders under threat. One month later, the French and British governments announced the signature of a framework agreement on a financing package including Chinese partners for the construction two French-built European Pressurized water Reactors (EPR) at Hinkley Point. The federation of EDF employee-shareholders EAS said in a statement that the interests of their company would be “gravely threatened” by the Hinkley Point project, calling it "a financial catastrophe foretold.” EAS asked the management of EDF “to stop this risky project, whose financial risks are too big for our company and which could put EDF’s very survival at risk.” Is EDF facing its Waterloo 200 years after Napoleon’s defeat?

Launched as a response to the Chernobyl disaster almost 30 years ago, not a single so-called Generation-III+ EPR reactor is generating power anywhere in the world...

more: Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (US): The experts on nuclear power and climate change - World Nuclear Industry Status Report

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Only 16% of Fukushima residents knew of emergency declaration - AJW by The Asahi Shimbun

The government's declaration of a nuclear emergency on March 11, 2011, reached only 16.5 percent of residents in Fukushima Prefecture by the following day, according to a Cabinet Office survey.

A key reason for this seems to have been that the communication structure in coastal areas was wiped out by the towering tsunami generated by the magnitude-9.0 Great East Japan Earthquake that led to the disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

The government directive was issued about four hours after the earthquake struck. The survey findings on 19,535 evacuees from 22 municipalities in Fukushima Prefecture underscore the difficulties in promptly notifying residents in such an emergency situation, which is essential for ensuring that all residents are evacuated smoothly...

more: Only 16% of Fukushima residents knew of emergency declaration - AJW by The Asahi Shimbun

Thursday, December 17, 2015

#COP 21 - Nous y étions pour clamer haut et fort "le nucléaire ne sauvera pas le climat" !

La COP 21 vient de s’achever. L’enjeu pour les antinucléaires : dénoncer l’instrumentalisation de ce processus par le gouvernement français et les industriels du nucléaire et contrecarrer la propagande d’EDF, qui avait lancé une vaste campagne de communication afin de faire passer le nucléaire pour une énergie propre. Pari réussi pour le Réseau qui en amont, et pendant la COP, s’est largement mobilisé, malgré l’état d’urgence et les manœuvres de l’État pour saper les actions prévues par les associations. Retour en images sur une campagne menée tambours battants ! *
more text: COP 21 - Nous y étions pour clamer haut et fort "le nucléaire ne sauvera pas le climat" ! | http://sortirdunucleaire.org (see that page for videos / more images below)
* The COP21 just ended. The challenge for antinuclear denounce the manipulation of the process by the French government and the nuclear industry and counteract the propaganda of EDF, which had launched a major communication campaign to go nuclear for clean energy. Mission accomplished for the upstream network that, and during the COP, has largely mobilized, despite the state of emergency and the state's maneuvers to undermine the actions planned by the associations. Back to images on a campaign drums beating!

more (INCLUDING VIDEOS): COP 21 - Nous y étions pour clamer haut et fort "le nucléaire ne sauvera pas le climat" ! | http://sortirdunucleaire.org


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Nuclear lobbyists' epic COP21 fail. Our next job? Keep their hands off climate funds - The Ecologist

The nuclear industry has had a disappointing COP21, writes Jim Green. Lobbyists were there en masse desperately trying to get pro-nuclear wording into the Paris Agreement, and they failed. The word does not occur even once in the entire document. But we must prepare for the next battle: keeping nuclear power out of the $100 billion a year Green Climate Fund.

READ: Nuclear lobbyists' epic COP21 fail. Our next job? Keep their hands off climate funds - The Ecologist

Nuclear Deal between Japan and India: A Brief Stocktaking | DiaNuke.org

The Indian media is right now busy trumpeting that the long talked of nuclear deal between Japan and India has been successfully inked. A careful reading, however, reveals that what has been signed is actually an MoU. And, an MoU, as is common knowledge, does not amount to an “agreement”. It is rather a statement of intent.

READ: Nuclear Deal between Japan and India: A Brief Stocktaking | DiaNuke.org

The Paris Agreement on climate — a good start, but… | #COP21 :: #DontNukeTheClimate

Paris, December 12, 2015

The international Don’t Nuke the Climate campaign had two major goals for COP 21: 1) to ensure that any agreement reached would not encourage use of nuclear power and, preferably, to keep any pro-nuclear statement out of the text entirely; and 2) along with the rest of the environmental community, to achieve the strongest possible agreement generally.
The first goal was certainly met. The word “nuclear” does not appear in the text and there are no incentives whatsoever for use of nuclear power. That was a clear victory. But that is due not only to a global lack of consensus on nuclear power, but to the fact that the document does not specifically endorse or reject any technology (although it does implicitly reject continued sustained use of fossil fuels). Rather, each nation brought its own greenhouse gas reduction plan to the conference. “Details,” for example whether there should be incentives for any particular technology, will be addressed at follow-up meetings over the next few years. So it is imperative that the Don’t Nuke the Climate campaign continue, and grow, and be directly involved at every step of the way–both inside and outside the meetings.
As for the strongest possible agreement, well, it may have been the “strongest possible” that could be agreed to by 195 nations in 2015. By at least recognizing that the real goal should be limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Centigrade rather than the 2 degrees previously considered by most nations to be the top limit, the final document was stronger than many believed possible going into the negotiations. That said, the environmental community agrees that the agreement doesn’t go far enough and, importantly, that the commitments made to date do not meet even this document’s aspirations.
So what is in the agreement?  ...

more: The Paris Agreement on climate — a good start, but… | GreenWorld

whats up: #BustTheMyth
you can't nuke global warming!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Support The #OcNukeDaily and #OccupyNuclear - GoFundMe

Greetings! I have started a gofundme campaign for "OcNuke" / #OccupyNuclear‬
Please consider helping out!

– My hope here is to recover a portion of my expenses for the purchase of a new laptop, recoup some of the monthly expenses for #OccupyNuclear, and to just have something to live on for a little while.
(see the gofundme page for more about my situation)

Following something of a sabbatical, and then a push for COP21 and my #BustTheMyth / "don't nuke the climate" campaign, my current plan is to revitalize #OccupyNuclear after the first of the year. My goal is to publicize and increase media exposure for, and, to inspire personal involvements in, world-wide anti-nuclear efforts, actions, news, networking and events. Please see occupynuclear.net.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Solar or Wind vs. Nuclear - The New York Times | Opinion | Letters

To the Editor:

Re “The New Atomic Age We Need” (Op-Ed, Nov. 28), by Peter Thiel:

In his zeal to portray nuclear power as our post-carbon panacea, Mr. Thiel belittles the devastation caused by past reactor accidents.

He also ignores the vulnerability of nuclear plants to sabotage and terrorism, makes no mention of the unsolved nuclear waste dilemma, and blithely declares that “the most fundamental obstacle to the success of nuclear power” is its “high cost.”

While Mr. Thiel, a venture capitalist, says he stands ready to invest in a next generation of unproven nuclear plants, he sweeps aside the wind and solar industries’ remarkable gains of the last decade. He claims that they are not “growing anywhere near fast enough to replace fossil fuels...”

more: Solar or Wind vs. Nuclear - The New York Times

Newton, Mass.
The writer, an environmental lawyer, is the author of “Harness the Sun”and “Harvest the Wind.”

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Background Information on Climate Change and Nuclear Power - NIRS

December 1, 2015. Webinar on the grid of the future in Maryland, with Dr. Arjun Mahkijani of Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, Corey Ramsden of Maryland SUN, and Jessica Azulay of Alliance for a Green Economy; moderated by Tim Judson of NIRS. How we can build a statewide grid that can support a system run on renewables and increased energy efficiency.

August 4, 2015. New report by Germany's Prognos AG for Agora EnergiewendeComparing the Cost of Low-Carbon Technologies: What is the Cheapest Option? Concludes, based on current experience in Germany and the UK, that a reliable system based on solar and wind with gas backup is 20% cheaper than a system with nuclear and gas backup.

June 30, 2015. Don't Nuke the Climate telebriefing: lessons from Japan and Germany. Featuring Amory Lovins and Tim Judson with Michael Mariotte moderating. mp3 file.

June 22, 2015. Pope Francis' Encyclical on climate includes several passages highly skeptical of nuclear power as a technology, and thus as a climate solution. Excerpts here.

June 17, 2015. Important new report from Institute for Energy and the Environment at Vermont Law School's Mark Cooper: Power Shift: The Deployment of a 21st Century Electricity Sector and the Nuclear War to Stop It. Describes how the nuclear power industry is seeking consumer bailouts for its uneconomic reactors while working to undermine adoption of clean renewable energy.

December 1, 2014. 148 groups, thousands of individuals, tell EPA to remove nuclear power support from Clean Power Plan Proposal. CommentsPress ReleaseAdditional technical commentssubmitted by NIRS.

more: Background Information on Climate Change and Nuclear Power - NIRS

Small Modular Reactors (SMR) | New Reactor Design - NIRS

a few pieces on SMRs from NIRS –

May 15, 2014. New report from Vermont Law School's Dr. Mark Cooper finds large-scale deployment of "small modular reactors" would cost $90 Billion; choke off funding for renewables.

September 26, 2013. Small Isn't Always Beautifulnew UCS report finds small reactors won't solve safety, security, cost problems.

August 8, 2013. Important new report from Institute for Energy and Environmental Research: small modular reactors won't solve nuclear industry's problems and may exacerbate them. (pdf)

more on other new reactor designs:
New Reactor Design - NIRS

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

PRESS RELEASE: India-Japan Nuclear Deal: World Wide Protest Planned

India-Japan Nuclear Deal: World Wide Protest Planned
Press Release
08 December, 2015

During the Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Shinzo Abe’s visit to India, protests have been organised against the proposed India-Japan Nuclear Agreement between 11th to 13th December.

Protests have been announced all over India during Shinzo Abe’s visit this week. Farmers and fisherfolk whom this deal directly and immediately affects would be protesting in Jaitapur, Mithi Virdi, Kovvada and Koodankulam. Solidarity groups have also called for protests in Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Nagpur, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ahmadabad and other cities.

​Protests by civil society groups are also being organised in New York, London, Tokyo and other international cities, as this nuclear agreement has serious international implications.

​The deal with Japan is actually a missing piece in the massively destructive nuclear energy expansion that India has embarked upon after signing the disastrous Indo-US nuclear deal. The nuclear projects of America and France in Gujarat’s Mithi Virdi, Andhra Pradesh’s Kovvada and Maharashtra’s Jaitapur cannot proceed without an India-Japan deal, as these designs use crucial components supplied by Japan.

It’s important to oppose this agreement as it unleashes an insane and irreversibly destructive nuclear expansion, imposed through brutal repression and denial of local democracy. These projects are being strongly opposed on the ground by farmers and fisherfolk as they displace hundreds of thousands of people and endanger their safety and environment. Several eminent independent experts and former policy makers have also risen it protest highlighting the specific hazards of the new designs, the shoddy environmental clearances issues under political pressure, the lack of transparency and accountability in the nuclear sector, the non-independence of India’s nuclear regulator and the insistence of the foreign suppliers for not complying with the Nuclear Liability Act passed by the Indian parliament. After Fukushima, a number of countries have shifted away from nuclear energy and international commitments like this deal to import nuclear technology actually distort India’s sovereign energy choices.
People in Japan are also opposing this agreement for the sheer absurdity of Mr. Shinzo Abe selling nuclear technology to other countries even as ongoing nuclear accident in Fukushima takes a turn for the worse. We urge you to lend your support to this urgent cause and stop the India-Japan nuclear agreement that would push the country into a destructive spiral.
Here is the e-petition that more than 1100 people have already signed. Please sign and circulate.

Here is the list of people to contact for protest:

Satyajit Chavan – satyajitchavan@yahoo.co.in | 8898770232

S.p. Udayakumar
Koodankulam@yahoo.com | 9865683735

Mithi Virdi/Ahmedabad
Krishna Kant
tokrishnakant@yahoo.co.in | 9427849310

Dr. EAS Sarma – eassarma@gmail.com | 99866021646

Adv Prakash Meghe pmegh_61@yahoo.co.uk | 9890889391

Kumar Sundaram / Shabnam Shaikh
pksundaram@gmail.com | helpmankind82@gmail.com
9810556134 | 9971058735

Jagadish G Chandra newsocialist.in@gmail.com | 080-26742616

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Rajendra Phatarpekar / Vivek Sundara
sihnouk@gmail.com / viveksundara@gmail.com
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Dr Santanu Chakraverti – s.chacraverti@gmail.com | 9831034089

New York: Ayumi Imagawa – ayumitemlock@gmail.com
London: Amrit Wilson – wilson_amrit@yahoo.co.uk
Tokyo: Yasuo Maeda – maeda_yasuo_candle@yahoo.co.jp
Osaka: Yasuji Mitsubayashi – afvpb814@oct.zaq.ne.jp
NSW, Australia: Harsha Prabhu – go2harsha@yahoo.com.au
Istanbul: Pinar Demircan – demipinar@gmail.com 

India-Japan Nuclear Deal: World Wide Protest Planned

On the ground at #COP21: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly … so far | GreenWorld

The nuclear industry is well-represented inside the conference hall; anti-nuclear groups haven’t been allowed to set up information booths.

Last Saturday, December 5, two NIRS staff arrived in Paris and joined anti-nuclear colleagues from across Europe for the United Nations climate conference. Officially, this is the 21st Conference of Parties on climate, or COP 21 for short. All year, we have been working as part of the Don’t Nuke the Climate coalition, preparing to mobilize thousands to COP 21 under the nuclear-free, carbon-free banner we flew at the People’s Climate March in New York City last year. That march was, in fact, the first wave of grassroots mobilization to fight for a strong, legally binding climate treaty. Especially with the conference happening in the most nuclearized country in the world, we’ve expected a major push to turn climate action into a feeding trough for poison power. And our expectations have not been disappointed.

The good news so far is that nuclear is not even mentioned in the drafts of the climate agreement presented over the last several days. There have been enough countries opposed to nuclear for there to be zero consensus on what to say about it: not a solution, not a problem, no clear direction at all. That might sound good, and is better than an agreement that promotes nuclear power.
But you wouldn’t know that by actually attending the COP. The nuclear industry and its governmental allies in the U.S., France, and elsewhere are here in force–with exhibit booths and events promoting nuclear power as a climate solution–whereas no explicitly anti-nuclear groups have been allowed to have an exhibit booth or hold an official event. Those decisions were made before the prohibition on public protests after the horrible violence on November 13 that have dampened the voice of protest outside the UN conference grounds. But they underscore the influence of corporate sponsors at the COP–like Electricite de France (EDF), the largest nuclear power company in the world. The industry is desperately trying to make itself seem relevant in the face of global stagnation, and avoid accelerating into rapid decline...
more: On the ground at COP 21: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly … so far | GreenWorld

more images from @NIRSnet twitter feed:

Monday, December 7, 2015

The nuclear industry’s COP 21 dilemma: 100% renewables is attainable | GreenWorld

If you think you’ve been seeing a lot more pro-nuclear propaganda in the media than usual in the past couple of weeks, well, it’s not your imagination. The nuclear industry and its champions are out in force, publishing articles and appearing in the media wherever and whenever they can in what may be a last-ditch effort to convince the world–or at least its leaders–that nuclear power is the answer, or one answer, to our climate crisis. As one writer put it yesterday, “At the Paris Climate Summit (COP21), the global nuclear lobby is in overdrive.”

If it all smacks a bit of desperation–and a lot of the pro-nuke pieces out there right now verge on the hysterical, with blatant attacks on those of us who envision a clean energy future–well, that’s not your imagination either. That’s because there is no global consensus on nuclear power. Some nations are against it entirely while a relatively few others are ardently pro-nuclear, with most–including the U.S.–somewhere in-between. And that means, by the very nature of the COP 21 talks, that nuclear isn’t getting what the industry needs; indeed, so far at least, nuclear is simply a non-factor...

more: The nuclear industry’s COP 21 dilemma: 100% renewables is attainable | GreenWorld

Sunday, December 6, 2015

!! The nuclear industry is trying to hijack the Paris Climate Summit | #COP21

The new Breakthrough Energy Coalition, backed by billionaires such as Bill Gates and supported by the global nuclear lobby is hijacking climate talks at COP21, writes Noel Wauchope.
At the Paris Climate Summit (COP21), the global nuclear lobby is in overdrive.
The centrepiece of today's global nuclear lobbying is the Breakthrough Energy Coalition, led by Bill Gates, made public at the start of the conference.
Bill Gates announced the Breakthrough Energy Coalition, uniting the efforts of two dozen other billionaire philanthropists such as Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg and Jeff Bezos, to sponsor research into energy that doesn’t produce carbon.
Gates was present in Paris together with U.S. President Barack Obama   the White House is reported to be supportive of the initiative. Article after article in the U.S. and other media outline the purpose of this group, stressing renewable initiatives, or rather, "clean" energy initiatives. Nuclear power is not mentioned but is tacitly included in that weasel word, "clean". 
More about the Breakthrough Energy Coalition later. But what else is happening in Paris at COP21? 
Well, the nuclear lobby is out in force, appearing on various kinds of media and in amongst the gathering, handing out thousands of free copies of its pro-nuclear propaganda book, Climate Gamble...

more: The nuclear industry is trying to hijack the Paris Climate Summit

Friday, December 4, 2015

INSANITY: China has an awful safety record — and wants to run 110 nuclear reactors by 2030 - The Washington Post

It had been about a month since chemical explosions blasted and burned through the port of Tianjin, killing 173. Pictures of rescue workers in hazmat suits became some of the signature images of the disaster. And despite incredible censorship, it was clear to most that unsafe chemical storage — thanks to bribery by local big shots — was to blame.
Still, on Sept. 15, China's Ministry of Environmental Protection announced post-Tianjin nuclear safety checks to "make sure nuclear facilities and equipment are safe and under control." Given the timing, it felt less like an assurance than an afterthought: "We definitely did not forget to check those nukes..."

more: China has an awful safety record — and wants to run 110 nuclear reactors by 2030 - The Washington Post