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Wednesday
Aug102011

Statewide coalition forms to shut down California nuclear plants

San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace has put out a media release today:

"Following the August 7 MUSE (Musicians United for Safe Energy) anti-nuclear concert, more than 60 California groups met in San Mateo for the first statewide Anti-Nuclear post-Fukushima Summit. Participants committed to continuing work towards the shut-down of the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant and San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, both of which are immediately adjacent to major earthquake faults. In addition, summit members focused on energy conservation and clean, safe, renewable solutions to establish a nuclear-free California.

Among the groups participating were the following: Abalone Alliance Clearinghouse; Alliance for Survival; Coalition For Responsible Ethical Environmental Decisions (CREED); Ecological Options Network (EON); Friends of the Earth; Green Leap Forward; Greenpeace; Los Angeles Greens; No Nukes Caucus Veterans for Peace; No Nukes on Faults; Peace and Freedom Party; Progressive Democrats of Los Angeles; Redwood Alliance; Residents Organized for a Safe Environment (ROSE); Sacred Sites Peacewalk for a Nuclear Free World; San Clemente Green; San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace; Veterans for Peace Chapter 162 East Bay San Francisco; Women's Energy Matters.

The MUSE concert was a fund-raiser for the victims of the Fukushima disaster and for clean, safe energy. See Guacamole Fund website and Facebook for more information about the artists and the concert.

Photos of the MUSE concert, featuring Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt and others are available at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mothers-for-Peace/183225733141
and at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Guacamole-Fund/231062476903972." 

For more info., contact Jane Swanson with San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace at Janeslo@me.com, (805) 595-2605, or cell (805) 440-1359.

Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) helped pull the coalition meeting together. Beyond Nuclear's Kevin Kamps was in attendance.

Wednesday
Aug102011

Japan Held Nuclear Data, Leaving Evacuees in Peril

"In interviews and public statements, some current and former government officials have admitted that Japanese authorities engaged in a pattern of withholding damaging information and denying facts of the nuclear disaster — in order, some of them said, to limit the size of costly and disruptive evacuations in land-scarce Japan and to avoid public questioning of the politically powerful nuclear industry. As the nuclear plant continues to release radiation, some of which has slipped into the nation’s food supply, public anger is growing at what many here see as an official campaign to play down the scope of the accident and the potential health risks.

'From the 12th to the 15th we were in a location with one of the highest levels of radiation,” said Tamotsu Baba, the mayor of Namie, which is about five miles from the nuclear plant. He and thousands from Namie now live in temporary housing in another town, Nihonmatsu. “We are extremely worried about internal exposure to radiation.' 

The withholding of information, he said, was akin to 'murder.'" New York Times

From Associated Press :

"Japan's system to forecast radiation threats was working from the moment its nuclear crisis began. As officials planned a venting operation certain to release radioactivity into the air, the system predicted Karino Elementary School would be directly in the path of the plume emerging from the tsunami-hit Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant.

But the prediction helped no one. Nobody acted on it."



Friday
Aug052011

“Into Eternity” – A haunting look at the future of radioactive waste

Beyond Nuclear is proud to announce that we are the non-theatrical NGO distributor of  the new film, Into Eternity, hailed by the San Francisco Chronicle as “a rare hybrid: an information-packed documentary crossed with an existential art film . . .  one of the most provocative movies of the year.” You can partner with us in screening this extraordinary and thought-provoking film.

Into Eternity explores the utter impossibility of storing nuclear waste for 100,000 or even a million years. It is, on the one hand, a documentary about the Onkalo storage facility presently under construction in Finland, and on the other hand, a startlingly beautiful work of art and an urgent provocation that ponders the question of who – or what – will remain on this earth when that time frame has elapsed.

Please log on here if you would like to collaborate with Beyond Nuclear –  and our partner, Specialty Studios – to screen this important film in your community – whether at a house party or at a larger public venue. Specialty Studios will work with you to provide promotional materials. Please contact Beyond Nuclear for printed information, follow-on action items, our flier and – where feasible and desirable – a speaker.

Friday
Aug052011

Hiroshima: World Conference against A & H Bombs Declaration

Nuclear weapons abolitionists gathered in Hiroshima at the site of the first atomic bombing of Japan, sixty-six years ago on August 6, 1945 to declare an end to all nuclear weapons, a strengthened resistance to the increasingly dangerous proliferation policy of "nuclear deterrence" and the creation of more nuclear free zones.  This year's international observance deeply sympathized with Japan's terrible loss of life from the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami and the new radiation victims suffering from the continuing nuclear crisis released by the Fukushima Dai-ichi catastrophe.

Friday
Aug052011

Take Action on radioactive waste

A week ago, the Blue Ribbon Commission on America's Nuclear Future (BRC) published its draft report on U.S. high-level radioactive waste (HLRW) management policy in light of President Obama's and Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Chu's wise and praiseworthy decision to cancel the proposed Yucca Mountain dumpsite in Nevada. But incredibly, despite the still unfolding Fukushima nuclear catastrophe, the BRC claims there are no safety, security, or environmental risks associated with the "mountain of waste 70 years high" stored in indoor wet pools and outdoor dry casks at U.S. atomic power plants and nuclear weapons sites. BRC proposes immediate site searches nationwide for one or more "consolidated interim [surface] storage" sites, as well as deep geologic repositories, for "temporarily" storing and permanently disposing of 65,000 metric tons of already accumulated commercial HLRW, more than 10,000 metric tons of DOE (nuclear weapons, Nuclear Navy, and research reactor) HLRW, as well as many tens of thousands of additional tons that the nuclear industry intends to generate in the decades ahead. Either away-from-reactor scheme would launch an unprecedented radioactive waste transport program that would take decades to carry out, just as opening "interim" parking or permanent dump sites would take decades to accomplish. BRC has invited public comments on its draft till October 31st.
 
Write the BRC, urging that hardened on-site storage be instituted as an essential measure, to secure wastes against attacks, safeguard them against accidents, and build dry cask storage well enough so that it will last for the decades into the future that wastes will be stuck at reactor sites regardless of away-from-reactor policy developments. Advise BRC that "centralized interim storage" could become de facto permanent parking lot dumps; it would represent a dangerous radioactive waste shell game, as wastes would have to be moved a second time to permanent disposal sites, doubling transport risks; and it would likely worsen environmental injustice, targeting people of color or low income communities already bearing a disproportionate radioactive burden, such as Native American reservations or Department of Energy nuclear weapons sites. Further, unless we stop making nuclear waste, we will need still more sacrafice zones to store it, making it a problem that will never end. Point out to BRC that learning lessons from "successful" repository programs in Finland and Sweden is risky, as shown by the film "Into Eternity": heaping yet more radioactive risk, in the form of dumpsites, on reactor host communities by offering "financial incentives" (buy offs or bribes) is not based on scientific suitability or morality, and does not represent consent by future generations, the protection of which cannnot be assured; the geological site studies are not complete; the price tag is astronomical; and the proposed Scandinavian repositories would serve just a handful of reactors, while U.S. dumpsites would take wastes from 104 still operating, and dozens of permanently closed, nuclear plants. Finally, urge BRC to require that HLRW transportation accident and attack risks -- many thousands of potential Mobile Chernobyls, dirty bombs on wheels, and floating Fukushimas targeted to pass through most states and many metropolitan areas -- be addressed, and not launched onto our roads, rails, and waterways for no good reason.