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ARTICLE ARCHIVE

Nuclear Power

Nuclear power cannot address climate change effectively or in time. Reactors have long, unpredictable construction times are expensive - at least $12 billion or higher per reactor. Furthermore, reactors are sitting-duck targets vulnerable to attack and routinely release - as well as leak - radioactivity. There is so solution to the problem of radioactive waste.

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Monday
Jan102011

Two groups file to ban uprate at Point Beach reactors

Wisconsin Citizens' Utility Board and Clean Wisconsin habe filed their opposition with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to an uprate at the Point Beach nuclear power plant in Wisconsin. The groups argue that the reactors don't need expanded power output because the state has more than enough electricity to meet its needs. Reactor owner, NextEra Energy Resources Inc. has proposed expanding the total power output from the two-reactor plant by 17%.

Sunday
Jan022011

Texas judge halts radioactive waste dump expansion, for now

Will the Lone Star State become the Lone Radioactivity Warning Symbol State?A Texas judge has granted environmentalists a last minute temporary restraining order against a vote by the Texas-Vermont "low" level radioactive waste dump commission that could replace the Lone Star on the state's flag with a Lone Radiation Symbol, opening the state to radioactive wastes from 36 additional states. The vote is being rushed by dump proponents in order to lock in approval of the dump's expansion before the new Governor of Vermont, Peter Shumlin, a Democrat calling for Vermont Yankee's shut down, can appoint new Vermont Commissioners to the panel to represent his opposition to the plan. If approved, Waste Control Specialists' (WCS) dump, on the Texas/New Mexico border very near the new LES/Urenco uranium enrichment facility in New Mexico, would replace the Barnwell, South Carolina national "low" level radioactive waste dump. Barnwell's closure to wastes from all but South Carolina, New Jersey, and Connecticut on July 1, 2008 has meant that most "low" level radioactive wastes in 36 additional states have had nowhere to go, and have piled up at reactor sites. WCS is owned by a Dallas billionaire infamous for his political donations in Texas.

Sunday
Jan022011

Environmental coalition challenges "20 MORE years of radioactive Russian roulette" at Davis-Besse

Rust-boric acid "lava" flows from Davis-Besse lid leading to 2002 hole in the head accidentAn environmental coalition including Beyond Nuclear, Citizens Environment Alliance of Southwestern Ontario, Don't Waste Michigan, and the Green Party of Ohio has filed a petition to intervene and a request for hearings on First Energy Nuclear Operating Company's application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for a 20 year license extension (any of the 75 exhibits listed are available in PDF format from Kevin Kamps at Beyond Nuclear upon request -- kevin@beyondnuclear.org). The four contentions filed allege that Davis-Besse's nuclear electricity could readily be replaced by wind power, by solar photovoltaics (PV), and by a combination of wind and solar PV. Alvin Compaan, Distinguished University Professor of Physics, Emeritus, at the University of Toledo, and former Chair of UT’s Physics and Astronomy Department, is serving as the environmental coalition's expert witness on renewables' potential to replace the dangerously deteriorated atomic reactor. The coalition issued a media release about its official intervention. Beyond Nuclear recently prepared a comprehensive summary of near-disasters which have occurred at Davis-Besse since 1977, entitled "Radioactive Russian Roulette on the Great Lakes Shore: 20 MORE Years at Davis-Besse?!"

Wednesday
Dec292010

NRC licensing board bolsters argument that renewables can replace nuclear

A U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Atomic Safety and Licensing Board ruled on December 28th that the NRC staff and nuclear utility applicant at the Calvert Cliffs 3 new reactor project in Maryland must give much more serious consideration to the vast potential of offshore wind power, as well as a combination of various renewable energy sources, as realistic alternatives to nuclear power. This is a tremendous victory for the environmental coalition -- which includes Beyond Nuclear -- fighting Calvert Cliffs 3, which brought the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) challenge in the first place, upon which the ASLB has just ruled. This victory provides an important precedent for two other Beyond Nuclear/environmental coalition interventions, this time against 20 year license extensions at Seabrook nuclear power plant in NH, and Davis-Besse atomic reactor in OH. In both cases, offshore wind power was presented as a vast potential resource that could replace the dangerously deteriorated atomic reactors. And in the Davis-Besse proceeding, a complementary argument was put forward, that a combination of renewables -- such as wind and solar PV power in OH -- can readily replace the nuclear electricity.

Tuesday
Dec212010

Environmental coalition organizes to challenge Davis-Besse license extension

Boric acid-rust "lava" flowing from the Davis-Besse lid. In 2002, it was discoverdd that a mere 3/16ths of an inch of metal prevented the reactor from breaching in a loss-of-coolant-accident.Beyond Nuclear, along with The Green Party of Ohio (ohiogreens.org), the Ohio Sierra Club (ohiosierraclub.org ), Don't Waste Michigan and the Coalition for a Nuclear-Free Great Lakes held a people's hearing in Toledo on Sat., Dec. 18th to oppose the 20 year license extension recently sought by the trouble-plagued Davis-Besse atomic reactor. The event was held at St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Toledo, Ohio. Concerned citizens' comments and testimony were videorecorded, and will be submitted to NRC as official public comment for its environmental scoping on the proposal. Alvin D. Compaan, Distinguished University Professor of Physics, Emeritus, at the University of Toledo, presented on "The case for replacing Davis-Besse with efficiency improvements and renewable energy sources." Kathryn Hoepfl, a University of Toledo undergraduate student of physics, also showed how wind power and solar power can readily replace Davis-Besse's atomic electricity. Other speakers included event organizers Joseph DeMare and Anita Rios of the Green Party of Ohio, Tony Szilagye of the Ohio Sierra Club, Ed McArdle of the Southeast Michigan Group of the Sierra Club, Phyllis Oster (who intervened against Davis-Besse's initial licensing over 30 years ago), David Ellison (a Cleveland architect and Green Party member), Ralph Semrock of SOLTERRA, and Michael Leonardi (a Toledo native who now resides in Italy). Kevin Kamps of Beyond Nuclear presented on his backgrounder, "Davis-Besse: 20 MORE Years of Radioactive Russian Roulette?!", which summarizes the numerous near-disasters there since operations began in 1977. Environmental groups plan to intervene against the license extension by the Dec. 27th deadline. A flyer announced the people's hearing. The Toledo Free Press has editorialized against the Davis-Besse license extension, and Tom Henry of the Toledo Blade attended and wrote an article about the people's hearing.