Climate Change

Nuclear power is counterproductive to efforts to address climate change effectively and in time. Funding diverted to new nuclear power plants deprives real climate change solutions like solar, wind and geothermal energy of essential resources.



Join the March for a Clean Energy Revolution - and Celebrating the Life of Michael Mariotte (1952-2016)

[Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) issued the following action alert, and tribute to the life and work of Michael Mariotte. See below.

Beyond Nuclear has joined in the NIRS-initiated planning for the March for a Clean Energy Revolution, and will take part on July 24th. Beyond Nuclear encourages everyone who can make it, to join in the Carbon-Free, Nuclear-Free contingent in Philadelphia on July 24th, as well as at the teach-ins, meetings, gatherings, etc., the day before. If you can't make it, please spread the word widely to those who can.

Also, see Beyond Nuclear's own tributes to Michael Mariotte, posted at our website.]

June 29, 2016

Dear Friends,

We invite you to join us for the next historic safe energy mobilization--the March for a Clean Energy Revolution, July 24 in Philadelphia. You can find more details on the march below.

We have good news and sad news to report today. On at least this occasion, it's appropriate that they go together. Many of you know that Michael Mariotte, NIRS's President and long-time Executive Director--and primary sender of these emails--had been struggling with cancer for some time.

Recently, that struggle came to an end. Michael passed away a few weeks ago. He has left us all with a legacy of his achievements from which the movement for a nuclear-free world will benefit for many years. We encourage you to visit our memorial webpage to find out more about Michael's enormous contributions and his unique life, which have been comemorated in some of the U.S.'s most prominent news outlets, as well as in the humble pages of our own Nuclear Monitor and the GreenWorld blog that Michael founded and edited.

Michael's death is a major loss for NIRS and the anti-nuclear movement. His brilliance and his voice will never be replaced, so you will notice some changes in the coming months. For instance, emails like this addressed from other NIRS staffers, and soon we will be rolling out one of the last projects Michael was working on: a new and revitalized website and a new image for NIRS, that connects our movements roots to our ongoing work.

As Michael would have it, we are continuing the fight--and our work for a nuclear-free, carbon-free world is only expanding.

Which brings us to the good news. This summer, we are marching for the Nuclear-Free, Carbon-Free world!

Two years ago, 400,000 people joined the historic People's Climate March in New York City -- including thousands who marched with NIRS and the Nuclear-Free, Carbon-Free Contingent. Michael Mariotte was the architect and chief organizer of that enormous, vibrant, and visionary contingent, and our mobilization was one of the moments of which he was proudest.

Collectively, we sent an incredibly powerful message that day, which not only led to the first-ever truly global climate action agreement. The visionary statement made by those marching for a nuclear-free, carbon-free world both helped keep nuclear power out of the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan and, ultimately, prevented the international climate agreement from endorsing it, as well. 

Join us on July 24 as we March for a Clean Energy Revolution in Philadelphia.

The Democratic National Convention will be meeting there starting the next day. The Nuclear-Free, Carbon-Free Contingent will be marching with thousands of anti-fracking, climate justice, First Nations, fair trade, unions, and clean energy activists, demanding an end to dirty energy and a total commitment and a just transition to clean, sustainable, renewable energy. And we need you to join us!

Our victories since the People's Climate March have led to more and more reactor shutdowns, but the nuclear industry hasn't given up--and their attacks on our clean energy future are getting more severe this year. Dirty energy corporations see the 2016 elections as their opportunity to block renewable energy, no matter who wins the elections.

And the nuclear industry is no exception. In fact, there is a nuclear lobbyist and spokesperson on the Democratic Party Platform Committee: Nuclear Matters' Carol Browner. We need as many No Nukes and safe energy activists as possible to join us in the streets of Philadelphia.

So please join us on July 24.

And if you can't make if you can't make it, or just want to help us build our numbers, please consider making a donation to support our organizing for the march. All donations to NIRS are being matched two-to-one this month--for every dollar you donate, some generous NIRS donors will double it.

Thanks for all you do,

The NIRS Team

Diane D'Arrigo, Denise Jakobsberg, Tim Judson, and Mary Olson


NIRS telebriefing on "Paris Onward," featuring Drs. Jacobson, Makhijani, and Ramana

Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) Executive Director Tim Judson moderated a discussion featuring Dr. Mark Jacobson of Stanford University, Dr. Arjun Makhijani of Institute for Energy and Environmental Research (IEER), and Dr. M.V. Ramana of Princeton University (a Beyond Nuclear Board of Advisors members), regarding the role of renewable sources of energy in light of COP21 climate agreement emerging from Paris, France in December. In short, "wind, water, and sun" are dramatically outcompeting a significantly declining nuclear power industry as the low carbon solutions to the climate crisis. NIRS has made an audio recording of the discussion available.


Radon exposure from Porter Ranch gas leak cause for concern

Beyond Nuclear is bringing more attention to the uncontrolled release of cancer-causing radon gas that could be escaping from SoCal Gas company’s Porter Ranch gas leak in suburban Los Angeles, California. Much attention is focused on the industrial-scale gas accident that is emitting thousands of tons of climate changing methane each day along with other hazardous chemicals including toluene, benzene, sulfur dioxide and hydrogen sulfide into the atmosphere. Thousands of residents have relocated with many sickened from inhaling the continuous emission. But radon in the mix represents an invisible killer. The EPA recognizes odorless, colorless, radioactive radon as the number one cause of lung cancer after cigarette smoking.  

A “state of emergency” was declared by Governor Jerry Brown on January 6, 2016 long after the discovery of the accident in late October 2015.  As the releases continue, dozens of lawsuits have been filed on behalf of Porter Ranch residents as SoCal Gas has also come under investigation by the California state air quality department for failure to maintain injection wells in one of the nation’s largest underground gas storage caverns created by decades of oil extraction. The harmful impacts of dirty and dangerous extracted energy on climate, health and the environment are mounting and underscore the urgent need to supplant coal, oil, nuclear and gas with the sun, wind and other renewable sources.

In the meantime, Beyond Nuclear urges that more federal and state attention be paid to real time monitoring, measuring and mitigating the radioactive gas emissions from industrial fracking at every stage of operation. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is set to finally begin radon monitoring at the leak site by January 29, 2016. Alarming rates of harmful radon emissions are being linked to industrial hydraulic fracking to extract natural gas in states like Pennsylvania.


"Don't Nuke the Climate!" at White House rally marking start of COP21 in Paris

As reported by the Washington Post, the anti-nuke movement (including representatives from Beyond Nuclear, NIRS, and other groups) was "in the house" at the White House for a climate rally in D.C. marking the beginning of COP21 in Paris, France:

In the District, several hundred gathered by the White House and marched along the Mall, with signs that read, “Preserve our home,” “Don’t nuke the climate” and “Keep it in the ground,” the latter referring to fossil fuels.

(Of course, the letter could -- and should -- also refer to uranium, as well as thorium, for that matter!)


Rally with Pope Francis in the call to moral action for climate justice: National Mall, Washington DC, Thurs., Sept. 24th

Pope Francis waves as he leads the Angelus prayer from the window of the Apostolic palace in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican, Aug. 9, 2015. Photo: Reuters.A coalition of environmental groups has called for a Rally with Pope Francis in the call to moral action for climate justice, to take place on the National Mall, Washington DC, between 3rd and 7th Streets, from 7:30am to 12:30pm on Thursday, Sept. 24th. In his encyclical letter on the climate crisis, Pope Francis does not include nuclear power as a solution. On the contrary, he cites the false nature of nuclear power as a climate solution, and its environmental risks. Pope Francis' call for real answers to the climate crisis, such as energy efficiency and renewable energy, including wind power and solar photovoltaics, joins his recent call -- on the 70th anniversary of the U.S. atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan -- for a worldwide ban on nuclear weapons.