The Cape Downwinders organized a nonviolent civil disobedience on May 20, 2012 to protest the continued operation of the Pilgrim nuclear generating station in Plymouth, Massachusetts,. Fourteen citizens were arrested for refusing to leave the private property of the Fukushima-design GE Mark I boiling water reactor 38 miles southeast of Boston.They were charged with a misdeameanor charge of "criminal trespass." The affinity group was delivering the group's letter to the nuclear power facility operator, Entergy. Entergy has been the focus of nonviolent direct actions for the continued operation of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant and massive public demonstrations around its Indian Point nuclear generating station in Buchannan, NY reactor just 25 miles north of New York City.
Beyond Nuclear board of directors member Dr. Judith Johnsrud honored by Sierra Club for lifetime of anti-nuclear leadership
On Friday, May 4th, at its national "No Nukes" grassroots gathering of activists from across North America, the Sierra Club honored Dr. Judith Johnsrud, a founding board of directors member of Beyond Nuclear, for her half-century of anti-nuclear activism and environmental leadership at the grassroots, national, and even international levels. Judy was honored by her life partner, Leon Glicenstein, event co-organizer Diane D'Arrigo of Nuclear Information and Resource Service, as well as the President of the Board of Directors of Sierra Club, Robin Mann. A film of Judy speaking on the hazards of radioactivity was shown, and a beautiful decorative quilt bearing the message "JUDITH: PROTECTING LIFE FOREVER" was presented to Judy (see photo, left). Members of the audience, numbering 85 activists from across the U.S. and Canada, were invited to share stories about Judy. Some of these friends and colleagues had worked with Judy for decades, but even some individuals who had not met Judy before were moved to thank her for her lifetime of work to protect the planet and all its inhabitants. At the conclusion of the ceremony, Judy said simply "I am grateful to you all," as well as saying -- with characteristic humbleness -- that she didn't deserve it (with which everyone in attendance wholeheartedly disagreed!)
At a Sierra Club sponsored workshop at the Pennsylvania Renewable Energy Festival in 2007, Judy presented a list of numerous major anti-nuclear victories which she and grassroots environmental allies have succeeded in winning over the decades (characteristically, she also included the losses suffered, including the construction and operation of the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant, which led to its meltdown in 1979). Judy has also prepared a history of the Environmental Coalition on Nuclear Power, which she has led for decades, providing more details on those hard won victories and bitter defeats.
In concluding her remarkable history of ECNP, Judy wrote: "These are only some of ECNP's current activities. Although nuclear power is patently failing, and in a rational world would never have been developed, constant vigilance by citizen activists like all of you will continue to be essential far into the future. But by far the greatest benefit from the existence of this Coalition has been the opportunity to develop deep, lasting friendships, and the privilege of meeting and working with its members, friends and colleagues -- surely high among the world's finest people." Certainly, Judy is one of the brightest lights among these "world's finest people," and the Sierra Club's No Nukes grassroots, and assembled friends and colleagues privileged to have worked with her over the past 50 years, honored her for that.
Leon Glicenstein, a life-long friend and supporter of Dr. Judith H. Johnsrud, has written an article for the Sierra Club Pennsylvania Chapter's Summer 2012 newsletter The Sylvanian about the national Sierra Club and the Sierra Club "No Nukes Activist Team" recognition ceremony, held May 4th in Takoma Park, Maryland, honoring Judy's half-century of anti-nuclear leadership not only locally, regionally, and nationally, but even globally. Judy is a founding board member of Beyond Nuclear. Included in Leon's article is a partial list of anti-nuclear victories Judy helped win in her home state of Pennsylvania alone.
Beyond Nuclear posted a tribute to Judy shortly after the ceremony, which includes more photos of the presentation of her quilt (see photo, left), as well as links to writings by Judy, such as her brief history of the Environmental Coalition on Nuclear Pollution, which she founded and led for many decades.
Among her many other areas of expertise, Judy is an expert in the field of radiation and health.
A coalition of environmental groups, represented by Toledo-based attorney Terry Lodge and coordinated by Don't Waste Michigan board member Michael Keegan, yesterday filed rebuttals to attacks by Detroit Edison (DTE). DTE had filed a motion calling upon the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Atomic Safety (sic) and Licensing Board (ASLB) to order summary dismissal of environmental and safety contentions opposed to a proposed new atomic reactor (Unit 3) at Fermi nuclear power plant near Monroe, Michigan. Fermi 3 would be a so-called General Electric-Hitachi "Economic Simplified Boiling Water Reactor" (ESBWR, see graphic at left). Fermi 3 is the last remaining ESBWR proposal in the U.S. -- several others have been abandoned by a number of other nuclear utilities.
The environmental coalition (which, in addition to Don't Waste Michigan, also includes Beyond Nuclear, Citizens for Alternatives to Chemical Contamination, Citizens Environment Alliance of Southwestern Ontario, and Sierra Club Michigan Chapter), had won admission for hearing on an environmental contention alleging that Fermi 3 would worsen harmful toxic algae blooms in Lake Erie's shallow Western Basin (Contention #6), as well on a safety contention alleging that Fermi 3's quality assurance (QA) program has been woefully inadequate, or even at times nearly non-existent (Contention #15). Fairewinds Associates, Inc. of Vermont's nuclear engineer, Arnie Gundersen, serves as the environmental coalition's expert witness on quality assurance. Fairewinds' President and Founder, Margaret Gundersen, prepared a declaration stating that Fairewinds stands by its allegations that Fermi 3 violates basic quality assurances regulations, and that this licensing proceeding's deadlines for intervenor response are arbitrary and impossible to meet -- especially when DTE conceals vast amounts of QA information behind a cloak of "proprietary" secrecy.
The coalition's filings yesterday included: Intervenors' response in opposition to MSD (Motion for Summary Disposition) of Contention 15 (QA); Intervenors' statement of material facts in opposition to SD (Summary Disposition) of Contetion 15 (QA); Second Declaration of Arnold Gundersen (QA); Intervenors' response in opposition and statement of material facts in opposition to MSD of Contention 6 (toxic algae); Intervenors' motion for leave to supplement opposition to MSD of Contention 15 (QA), with attached affidavit of Margaret Gundersen.
The United Nations is being called upon to intervene in an extremely critical situation still emerging at the damaged Unit 4 amidst the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear catastrophe. Another earthquake is feared could topple the already damaged Unit 4 reactor building where more than one hundred tons of high-level nuclear waste sits precariously in a open storage pool elevated ten stories (100 feet) above grade. Should the reactor building topple and spill the contents of cooling water and nuclear waste onto the ground, a new and more potent radioactive catastrophe would commence beginning with a radioactive fire releasing 10 times the amount of Cesium-137 released into the atmosphere from Chernobyl. This enlarged catastrophe would then engulf the other five reactor units and a common nuclear waste pool potentially releasing 85 times the amount of radioactive cesium.
You are encouraged to sign the "Cesium Red Alert" petition to United Nation's Secretary Ban Ki-Moon and pass it along.