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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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Tuesday
Mar252014

Gundersen: Forever deadly radioactive waste, versus renewables

Arnie Gundersen, Chief Engineer, Fairewinds Associates, Inc.As Fairewinds Associates, Inc.'s Chief Engineer, Arnie Gundersen (photo, left), concluded his keynote presentation at the Beyond Nuclear/FOE/NEIS "Mountain of Radioactive Waste 70 Years High" conference in Chicago in Dec. 2012:

"What we're seeing is that the cost of solar is plummeting while nuclear is rising," Gundersen said, adding that he often hears the rebuttal that the sun doesn't shine day and night. "But if you believe that man can build a repository to store nuclear waste for a quarter of a million years, surely those same people can find a way to store electricity overnight." ---GAZETTENET.com, November 16, 2012

Gundersen serves as the expert witness for an environnental coalition (Beyond Nuclear, Citizens Environment Alliance of Southwestern Ontario, Don't Waste Michigan, and Sierra Club, Ohio Chapter) that has challenged the risky, experimental steam generator replacements at Davis-Besse.

An overlapping coalition (including the Green Party of Ohio) has raised the radioactive waste dilemma and the renewables alternative as major arguments against the 20-year license extension at Davis-Besse.

Tuesday
Mar252014

Opponents to 20 more years at Davis-Besse cite radioactive waste dilemma, renewable alternatives

Environmental coalition attorney Terry Lodge of ToledoThe environmental coalition opposing the 20-year license extension sought by FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company (FENOC) at its problem-plagued Davis-Besse atomic reactor on the Lake Erie shore east of Toledo has spoken out at NRC Environmental Impact Statement public comment meetings. The coalition issued a press release, focused on the unsolved dilemma created by Davis-Besse's ongoing generation of forever deadly high-level radioactive waste, as well as the renewables alternative (wind power, solar PV, etc.) to a risky, dubious 20 more years of atomic reactor operations.

The press release quoted Beyond Nuclear's Kevin Kamps: “The worsening cracking of Davis-Besse’s concrete containment, the corrosion of its inner steel containment vessel, the risks of its experimental steam generator replacement, and its recently revealed Shield Building wall gap are clear signs that this atomic reactor is overdue for retirement and decommissioning.”

The coalition includes Beyond Nuclear, Citizens Environment Alliance of Southwestern Ontario, Don't Waste Michigan, and the Green Party of Ohio. Terry Lodge of Toledo serves as the coalition's legal counsel.

Thursday
Mar132014

Coalition calls for OIG investigation into NRC vote against GE BWR Mark I/II radiation filters

On the third anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe, Beyond Nuclear was joined by dozens of allied grassroots groups across the country in requesting that the U.S Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) initiate an inquiry into public health and safety matters relating to the NRC's post-Fukushima severe accident countermeasures.

The request regards severe accident countermeasures for the unreliable containment systems on General Electric Mark I and Mark II boiling water reactors (BWR) as identified in “Consideration of Additional Requirements for Containment Venting Systems for Boiling Water Reactors with Mark I and Mark II Containments” (SECY 2012-0157) and the subsequent “Issuance of Order to Modify Licenses with regard to Reliable Hardened Containment Vents Capable of Operation Under Severe Accident Conditions,”( EA 2013-109).

The coalition urges OIG to investigate perceived undue bias of the majority of NRC Commissioners to protect industry financial interests, over public health and safety interests, in a March 19, 2013 vote. Four of the five NRC Commissioners voted to reject the NRC's Japan Lessons Learned Project Directorate staff recommendation to Order the installation of engineered external radiation filters on severe accident capable hardened containment vents.

By its majority vote, the Commission rejected the combined quantitative and qualitative cost-benefit analyses duly performed by the NRC technical staff to justify the associated costs in recommending an Order to require both Option 2 (severe accident capable hardened containment vents) and Option 3 (engineered external high capacity radiation filtration systems on hardened containment vents) be installed on all U.S. GE Mark I and Mark II Boiling Water Reactors.

NRC Chairwoman Allison Macfarlane was the only Commissioner to vote for filters.

Beyond Nuclear launched its Freeze Our Fukushimas campaign, calling for the permanent shutdown of GE BWR Mark Is and IIs, in the immediate aftermath of the Fukushima catastrophe.

Tuesday
Mar112014

Those Responsible for the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident Not Held Accountable

Aileen Mioko Smith, Green Action JapanGreen Action Japan, directed by Aileen Mioko Smith (photo, left), has published a press release on the third anniversary of the 3.11 Great East Japan Earthquake. The press release also emphasizes that the Japanese government is pushing for restart of nuclear power, and makes the following major points: No One Held Criminally Responsible for Man-Made Accident; Responsibility for Tsunami Underestimation Should Also be Investigated; Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) Prioritizes Restart of Nuclear Power Over Dealing with Fukushima Daiichi Disaster; Japan’s Nuclear Authorities Are Yet Again Underestimating Earthquake Potential for Destroying Japanese Nuclear Power Plants; and the Nuclear Regulatory Authority [Appears Ready to] Break Its Own Rules. See the full press release here.

Tuesday
Mar112014

Chomsky: From Hiroshima to Fukushima, Vietnam to Fallujah, State Power Ignores Its Massive Harm

Noam ChomskyAs reported by Democracy Now! on the Pacifica Radio Network:

World-renowned political dissident, linguist, author and MIT Professor Noam Chomsky traveled to Japan last week ahead of the three-year anniversary of the Fukushima crisis. Chomsky, now 85 years old, met with Fukushima survivors, including families who evacuated the area after the meltdown. "[It’s] particularly horrifying that this is happening in Japan with its unique, horrendous experiences with the impact of nuclear explosions, which we don’t have to discuss," Chomsky says. "And it’s particularly horrifying when happening to children — but unfortunately, this is what happens all the time."

Chomsky also addresses the radioactive contamination of Iraq due to the U.S. military's use of depleted uranium weapons, as well as the lingering health impacts from the Vietnam War due to the U.S. military's use of chemical poisons there.