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Sunday
Apr242016

DANGER - Radioactive Leak at INDIAN POINT

This 30-minute interview has just been published and broadcast in New York City, and is also available for viewing online: Alfred C. Meyer, Board Member of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) & Kevin Kamps, Radioactive Waste Watchdog at Beyond Nuclear, discuss the danger of continuing radioactive leaks at Indian Point, Buchanan, New York. An Access for All Production produced through the facilities of Manhattan Neighborhood Network, by Gloria Messer, Producer/Director.

Friday
Apr222016

The Chernobyl plume led to a nuclear-free Austria. Why not elsewhere?

Writing today in Counterpunch, Beyond Nuclear's Linda Pentz Gunter explores how the April 26, 1969 Chernobyl nuclear disaster led to a nuclear-free Austria.  An excerpt:

Nuclear power plants are banned in Austria under the country’s constitution after a 1978 referendum.  (Yes, Virginia, it is actuallyillegal to build nuclear power plants there.)

Nuclear weapons are also banned.  So is the storage of nuclear waste.

Transportation through Austria of civil or military nuclear materials or waste has been outlawed.  Any attempt to revive nuclear power in that country cannot happen without a national referendum.

Austria has taken strong action against the proposed new Hinkley C reactor in England by filing a legal challenge at the European court of justice against EU-granted state subsidies which would be lavished on the $35 billion boondoggle by the British government.

Austria’s chancellor, Werner Faymann, spoke out against nuclear energy during the COP21 climate talks in Paris last December.  Nuclear energy is not included in the climate agreements made there.

Austria’s Director for Arms Control, Nonproliferation, and Disarmament, Alexander Kmentt, is leading the call for global nuclear weapons abolition at the United Nations.

Not content simply with a nuclear-free Austria, the Vienna-basedCities For A Nuclear Free Europe is demanding “an immediate Europe-wide moratorium on nuclear power plant construction (including plants that are already under construction).”

Read the full article.

Tuesday
Apr192016

Beyond Nuclear presents Kay Cumbow of Michigan with the 2016 Dr. Judith H. Johnsrud "Unsung Hero" Award at ANA's DC Days

Kevin Kamps of Beyond Nuclear presents Kay Cumbow of Michigan with the 2016 Dr. Judith H. Johnsrud "Unsung Hero" Award at ANA's D.C. Days on Capitol Hill. Photo by Scott Kovac, Nuclear Watch New Mexico.At the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability's (ANA) 28th annual D.C. Days, Beyond Nuclear's Kevin Kamps presented the 2016 Dr. Judith H. Johnsrud "Unsung Hero" Award to Kay Cumbow of Michigan, for her more than three decades of grassroots anti-nuclear activism. The awards reception was held April 19th, on the top floor of Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill, overlooking a panoramic view of the District of Columbia at sunset.

Kevin's introduction of Kay describes the Judy Johnsrud "Unsung Hero" Award, and includes a far from complete list of the reasons why Kay is most deserving.

The text of the award certificate reads: Alliance for Nuclear Accountability and Beyond Nuclear award the 2016 Dr. Judith H. Johnsrud Unsung Hero Award to Kay Cumbow, for demonstrating tireless dedication and stubborn determination, despite daunting odds, in her creative, visionary work for a Nuclear-Free Great Lakes.

Here are Kay Cumbow's prepared remarks.

Kay attended DC Days as a member of a delegation from Women's International League for Peace and Freedom's (WILPF) Michigan Chapter. WILPF, founded more than a century ago, is an ANA member group, as is Beyond Nuclear. (WILPF celebrates its 101st birthday on 4/28/16!)

The award is named in honor of Judy Johnsrud (1931-2014), a Beyond Nuclear founding board member, in celebration of her nearly half-century of anti-nuclear leadership. Judy herself was awarded a lifetime achievement award by the Sierra Club in 2012. Beyond Nuclear featured a tribute to Judy on the back cover of our Three Mile Island meltdown +35 years commemoration newsletter.

Wednesday
Apr132016

As John Kerry Visits Hiroshima, U.S. Quietly Launches $1 Trillion Effort to Upgrade Nuclear Arsenal

Marylia Kellley, Executive Director of Tri-Valley CAREs in California, an ANA member groupAs reported by Amy Goodman at Demoracy Now!:

On Monday, John Kerry became the first secretary of state to visit Hiroshima, the Japanese city destroyed by a U.S. nuclear bomb on August 6, 1945. Three days after the Hiroshima bombing, the U.S. dropped another nuclear bomb on the city of Nagasaki. Hundreds of thousands were killed. The United States is the only country ever to drop an atomic bomb. Kerry offered no apology for the U.S. nuclear attack but called for "a world free from nuclear weapons." Despite his remarks, the Obama administration has been quietly upgrading its nuclear arsenal to create smaller, more precise nuclear bombs as part of a massive effort that will cost up to $1 trillion over three decades. We speak to Marylia Kelley. Her group, the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability [ANA], just published a report titled "Trillion Dollar Trainwreck: Out-of-control U.S. nuclear weapons programs accelerate spending, proliferation, health and safety risks."

The report has been released on the eve of ANA's annual DC Days. You can find a link to the full report, as well as a press release about DC Days, on ANA's website homepage.

Beyond Nuclear is proud to have been an ANA member group since our founding in 2007.

Thursday
Apr072016

When "FirstEnergy says PUC vote assures Davis-Besse operation for several years," Beyond Nuclear begs to differ

This still images comes from a U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission video. The yellow arrow shows a sub-surface crack in Davis-Besse's concrete containment Shield Building wall. The cracking was revealed during an October 2011 reactor lid replacement. The cracking grows by a half-inch, or more, in length, every time it freezes out, due to Ice-Wedging Crack Propagation, due to water locked in the walls by FENOC's 2012 "White Wash" weather sealant of the Shield Building exterior, 40 years too late.In an article entitled "FirstEnergy says PUC vote assures Davis-Besse operation for several years," Nucleonics Week reporter Michael McAuliffe quoted Beyond Nuclear's Kevin Kamps:

A coalition of anti-nuclear and environmental groups including Beyond Nuclear was also critical of the PUC decision.

“PUCO’s $4 billion bailout to FirstEnergy will mostly go towards padding the pockets of company executives and shareholders, not to critically needed repairs of safety systems, structures, and components,” Beyond Nuclear spokesman Kevin Kamps said in a March 31 statement.

[FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company, FENOC, spokesman] Colafella said “there are currently no major capital improvements needed at Davis-Besse.” But the coalition said that among needed plant maintenance is repairing a shield building which has a multitude of cracks. The shield building protects the reactor from impact by external objects.

Kamps questioned whether Davis-Besse will be able to remain in operation for the eight years covered by the plan and said in an April 4 interview that FirstEnergy does not “plan on plowing much of their bailout back into maintenance, and the NRC didn’t require it.” More.

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