The fantasy of a better nuclear mousetrap: uranium metal fuel

An article in the MIT Technology Review, asserted that a new, improved reactor fuel (pictured) might be able to off-set the obvious expense of nuclear energy which is also too slow to address climate change. The author's lead -- "slowing climate change will most likely require a vast expansion of carbon-free nuclear power" -- caught our attention. Read the  Beyond Nuclear response. We drew upon our Advisory Board, and particularly upon input from Dr. M.V. Ramana of Princeton University, to set the record straight, including the observation that "the fuel proposed by the Lightbridge company, and cited in Talbot’s article, has potentially disastrous flaws in that it uses uranium metal (rather than uranium oxide), which could swell and cause fuel failure. There can also be very high temperatures at the center of the fuel."


Coalition asserts Fermi 3 transmission corridor violates NEPA

Atomic reactors and their electrical transmission lines are inextricably interlinked, yet NRC staff has failed to undertake a NEPA review of the proposed new Fermi 3 transmission line corridor's environmental impacts.The environmental coalition intervening against the proposed new Fermi 3 reactor has re-asserted its nearly three-year old challenge, directly to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's five Commissioners themselves, that the inextricably interlinked transmission line corridor needed to export the electricity to the grid is still in violation of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

The coalition's Toledo-based attorney, Terry Lodge, filed a Petition for Review with the NRC Commissioners by their ordered deadline. The petition defends not only the contention's merit, but also its separation from the NRC Atomic Safety and Licensing Board (ASLB) panel's request to the Commissioners for permission to undertake a sua sponte review. More.


Beyond Nuclear on Harvey Wasserman's "Green Power and Wellness" radio show

Harvey Wasserman, author of "Solartopia"Beyond Nuclear's Cindy Folkers and Kevin Kamps, along with David Kraft of Nuclear Energy Information Service in Chicago, appeared on Harvey Wasserman's (photo, left) "Green Power and Wellness" radio program on Sept. 30th, in an hour-long discussion entitled "Nukes v. Global Warming v. Renewable Energy." Listen to the audio recording here.


Chris Williams to speak against Davis-Besse & Fermi

Chris Williams speaking at Nuclear-Free, Carbon-Free Contingent of the People's Climate March in New York City on Sept. 21stChris Williams (photo, left), the chairman of the board of directors of Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS), and a lead organizer with Vermont Citizen Action Network (VCAN) and Vermont Yankee Decommissioning Alliance (VYDA), will speak out against the Davis-Besse, Ohio and Fermi, Michigan nuclear power plants during a Great Lakes tour in mid-October.

Chris will speak in Port Clinton, Ohio on Monday, October 13th (7 to 8:30pm at Ida Rupp Public Library, 310 Madison Street; see flier here), and in Bowling Green, Ohio on Tuesday, October 14th (7:30 to 8:30pm at BGSU Business Administration Building, Room 103; see flier here).

Chris will also speak in downtown Monroe, Michigan on Thursday, October 16th (Hospitality at 4pm; Teach In at 6pm; Slide Show at 7pm; at Loranger Square Pavilion, E. 1st St. & Washington St., 48161; see flier here).

Please see the linked fliers above, print them up, post them, hand them out, zap them around, and otherwise spread the word! More.


17 groups urge NRC to halt licensing, relicensing of 23 reactors due to failure to address 2012 court ruling

Diane CurranAs reported by a coalition press release, 17 groups engaged in interventions against 23 old and new reactors have filed new contentions with U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Atomic Safety and Licensing Board (ASLB) panels. The contentions cite NRC's own lack of safety assurances regarding ultimate disposal of irradiated nuclear fuel, a recent reversal of NRC's previous so-called "Nuclear Waste Confidence." In addition to the contentions seeking to block new reactor licenses and old reactor license extensions, the coalition has requested stays on all proceedings until the matter is resolved.

Diane Curran (photo, above) of Harmon, Curran, Spielberg + Eisenberg, LLP in Washington, D.C., is a lead attorney representing the environmental coalition. Dr. Mark Cooper of Vermont Law School, and Dr. Arjun Makhijani of Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, have each filed expert testimony on behalf of the coalition. More.