Because ANSTO shut down cyclotron, Australia has the problem of importing a short-lived medical isotope

January 16, 2021

Why did ANSTO shut down National Medical Cyclotron, that made medical isotopes without nuclear waste?

January 14, 2021
Greg Phillips.  Nuclear Fuel Cycle Watch, 13 Jan 2021,
Why did the “National Medical Cyclotron” (30MeV) get snuffed out after only 20 years? It was our only way of making Iodine123 here in Australia. Canada has been keeping its giant cyclotron (520MeV) going for over 40 years – and going strong.
Our National Medical Cyclotron was commissioned in 1990 and decommissioned in 2010 (the Opal reactor was officially opened in 2007 – perhaps that’s a clue). During this pandemic we have had to import Iodine123 at great expense from Japan. I get the feeling that ANSTOs management has been more interested in supporting “nuclear reactor partners” (eg. South Africa, China, UK..) than supporting a clean, resilient isotope supply for Australia.
I wonder how many of these new advanced Cyclotrons we could have bought instead of going down the Moly99 waste factory path. This cyclotron can make many medical isotopes, including Iodine123 and Technetium99. Also.. “The TR-24 cyclotron is designed to operate for more than 30 years and can be readily upgraded on-site.”  .

Australian and other nuclear news this week

January 11, 2021

Midst all of the Trumpian circus, and the dire problems of the pandemic, it’s hard to find news about the underlying grave problems of the climate. I did vow to stay off that subject.  But that’s hard to do, when global heating has accelerated over 2020, when it should have been a cooler year, with La Nina prevailing.   Not only accelerating – climate change is here with us. The Earthbound Report lists 10 big impacts in 2020.

But – to return to the nuclear, it hasn’t been just a background problem lately, as the Washington mayhem raises anxieties about Donald Trump’s finger on the trigger of nuclear war.

A bit of good news – The good news hidden within one of America’s darkest weeks


Australian govt has quiet nuclear deal with China, but condemns Victoria-China medical research.

The Australian government’s shameful record in the Kimba nuclear dump fiasco.  Government’s Kimba nuclear waste dump slush fund – benefit goes straight to Kimba’s mayor.

Treaty – a step on the long path towards nuclear disarmament..

End of an ERA: four decades of radioactive risk come to an end at Kakadu.  Clean-up plan for Ranger uranium mine is ”woefully inadequate”.

Scott Morrison should change his mind and call Trump to end bizarre Assange saga.



Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons: The Road There and the Road AheadBeatrice Fihn: How to implement the nuclear weapons ban treaty.

Multinational effort could help solve U.S.-Russia nuclear issue.

Geopolitics Of Nuclear Generation Delayed Renewables By Decades To Fossil Fuel Industry Benefit, Our Detriment.

Ten compelling reasons to stay away from nuclear power .

Judge’s refusal to extradite Julian Assange is still part of cowardly process to deny freedom of information.

JAPAN.   High court drops TEPCO’s appeal against order for compensation to affected Fukushima worker.  Radiation levels at Fukushima plant found worse and more lethal than previously assumed. Only 30% of Fukushima residents happy with disaster recovery progress.

INDIA.  Military strategy relying on nuclear weapons – a dangerous myth.

CANADA.  Canada vocal about nuclear disarmament, but silent about the Treaty for Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.  Canada shows how nuclear reactors are not needed for production of technetium-99m.    Creating jobs and community opportunities -Pickering City Council wants immediate dismantling of nuclear station.



ITALY. Seven regions in Italy to take legal action against plan for nuclear waste dumping.    Beautiful Italian regions furious at sites recommended for nuclear trash.

IRAN. Iran will expel U.N. nuclear inspectors unless sanctions are lifted.

NORTH KOREA. Kim Jong Un signals plans to develop new nuclear weapons.

INDONESIA.  Indonesia’s nuclear ambitions could prove disastrous for the Southeast Asian region.

FRANCE.  France’s declining nuclear production.  Nuclear in France: why bother? This technology is on the way out.  France conducts enhanced thermonuclear missile test.  Government control over nuclear and radiation information; firing of sociologist Christine Fassert.

ISRAELRestoring Iran nuclear deal is good for Israel.

LEBANON.  Lebanon’s Hezbollah chief says nuclear button with “crazy fool” Trump.


Australian government hypocrisy about its new nuclear reactor deal with China

January 8, 2021

Double standards on research cooperation with China, Independent Australia 4 January 2021,   The Government is hypocritical in its approval of Australia’s nuclear research body to work with China on the development of nuclear reactors, writes Noel Wauchope.

PRIME MINISTER Scott Morrison’s Liberal Coalition Government seems to remain in silent approval of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation’s (ANSTOpartnership with a Chinese company to develop Generation IV nuclear technologies such as small nuclear reactors.

But it’s a different story when it comes to the Morrison Government’s concern to put a stop to the Victorian Labor Government’s cooperation with China in developing agricultural, communications and medical research.

We hear very little about the Australian Government’s research connections with China, managed under the Australia-China Science and Research Fund (ACSRF), which has the aim of ‘supporting strategic science, technology and innovation collaboration of mutual benefit to Australia and China’.

One remarkable collaboration between Australia and China is in the strategic partnership between ANSTO and the Shanghai Institute of Applied Physics (SINAP) to develop the Thorium Molten Salt Nuclear Reactor (TMSR) and other Generation IV nuclear reactor designs.

In March 2019, Dr Adi Paterson, then CEO of ANSTO, welcomed renewal of this agreement and was reported as stating that it was “consistent with ANSTO and Australia’s interest in and support of Generation IV reactor systems”. This statement was made at a time when Australia’s federal and state laws clearly prohibited the development of nuclear reactors.

The Age quoted anonymous senior Federal Government sources who reveal that the Australian Government may use its powers to tear up a research agreement between the Victorian Government and China’s Jiangsu province. This agreement was signed in 2012 and renewed in 2019……….

The USA partly funds the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, which strongly advises against cooperative research with China. And, of course, Victorian Liberal Opposition leader Michael O’Brien was quick to join in the chorus, condemning the Labor Government for having the deal with China.

All this makes it all the more inexplicable as to why the Australian Government should have an agreement with China to develop nuclear reactors. Under federal law, Australia prohibits establishing nuclear installations.  ……..

There has been virtually no media coverage of Dr Adi Paterson’s deal with China, which goes back to 2015. I have previously written about this and the secrecy under which it was conducted.

Indeed, ANSTO’s operations and its funding have been conducted in secrecy, under the comfortable shroud of national security.

Right now, there is a move to corporatise the nuclear medicine facility at Lucas Heights as a separate entity to ANSTO. At the same time, the Government is in an unseemly rush to set up a nuclear waste dump near Kimba in South Australia. In the midst of all this came the sudden unexplained resignation of the CEO, Dr Adi Paterson.

The silence on all this is disturbing. It must be especially so for the small rural community of Kimba and for the Indigenous Title Holders as they wait in limbo for the vexed question of the nuclear waste dump to be solved. For the rest of South Australia, that is a concern, too. Victorians may well wonder why their medical research cooperation with China is seen as so dangerous. Meanwhile, is it okay for Australia’s nuclear research body, ANSTO, to work with China on the development of small nuclear reactors?,14664

Nuclear news – Week One of 2021 – Australia and more

January 4, 2021

“News” is by its nature , all about the bad stuff, while the majority of people, trying to live a decent, co-operative, life, are not reported. No surprise the, that 2020 news has been all about the bad stuff.

And bad it has been, and still is, with world-wide coronavirus cases heading to 90 million, and economic disruption resulting from the situation. At the same time, global heating moves on inexorably, with polar ice melting changing the world ecosystem.

The pandemic and global heating have been, still are, the defining problems of our time.  BUT, the nuclear danger is equally important, and it is the one that could be addressed, if the deceptive propaganda of the nuclear industry were to be countered. The industry has done a great job of keeping its issues out of the public eye, with its subtle theme that only technical experts can have an opinion.

That’s why, reluctantly, I decided to concentrate on nuclear issues, and leave those other critical topics to the media.

This month is especially important, with the coming into force of the U.N. Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, on January 22.  There will be voices rubbishing this Treaty. But it complements existing agreements, and most significantly it will make nuclear weapons look, (like chemical and biological ones), unacceptable and immoral as well as illegal 

Some bits of good news  -Amid 2020’s gloom, there are reasons to be hopeful about the climate in 2021.

What went right in 2020:  some big wins for the environment, society and culture, human rights, even health.


The Australian government’s shameful record in the Kimba nuclear dump fiasco.

The decay of mainstream media in Australia – and the rise of new independent media.  Rupert Murdoch’s News Corpse rises in ABC Insiders .


Legal case on extradition of Julian Assange is an alarming precedent for freedom of speech.

Pandemic, climate, nuclear weapons – lessons for survival in 2021.This is the sort of letter that citizens need to be writing – in support of the nuclear weapons ban.

Mary Olson on the 6 mentors who guided her on gender and radiation study.

The Nuclear Industry’s Really Bad Safety Analysis.

How the USA and Soviet Union planned to use nuclear radiation as a weapon.

Get ready for a 2021 barrage of pro nuclear spin, from a desperate industry.

JAPAN. Fukushima nuclear clean-up hugely affected by discovery of lethal radiation levels.   Tokyo Olympics Impossible.  Never give up! 95 year old Hibakusha welcomes the UN nuclear ban treaty.  In March 2011 Japan’s government considered evacuating the then Emperor Akihito further away from Fukushima.


Plowshare anti nuclear-weapons activists again face prison . Joe Biden must end the cover-up of, and the huge money to, Israel’s nuclear weaponsNuclear Command and Control: Session 3 of the Congressional Study Group.  LGBTQ Activists Jump Into the Atlantic to upport Treaty banning nuclear weapons.  Biden Wants US Back in Iran Nuclear Deal (Video).

Doubtful that aging Los Alamos National Laboratory could safely produce plutonium triggers, no matter how much funding it gets.


POLAND.  Trump’s nuclear construction deal with Poland – strained with Biden victory ?

SOUTH KOREA.  South Korean government to cut nuclear power generation.

CANADA.  Small modular reactor plan – a dangerous distraction from climate change action.  The gigantic Chalk River Mound (the so-called ‘NSDF’) would not reduce Canada’s radioactive waste liabilities and could in fact increase them.

INDONESIA.  In Indonesia – small nuclear reactors as a prelude to nuclear weapons?

SLOVAKIA.  Slovakia: Krško nuclear power station shut down as a precaution after quake.

TURKEY.  Turkey’s aspirations to become a nuclear weapons power.

RUSSIA.  How a Soviet spy helped to avoid nuclear war.

A short burst of nuclear news – Australia and more

December 28, 2020

The good news from 2020: 10 sunny stories from an otherwise dark year.

In ‘Huge Victory for Polar Bears’, Court Rejects Arctic Offshore Drilling Project.  U.S. “climate mayors” are hopeful that a Biden administration will help cities accelerate progress toward climate goals.


Curiouser and curiouser – the dishonest acrobatics of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO)

Cowardly silence from South Australia’s Premier on nuclear waste dump plan.  Australia’s lying Minister for Resources gets an “F” in assessment of govt ministers.


The Madness of Nuclear Deterrence.

Nuclear power ridiculously expensive and uncompetitive – the market has spoken.

ARCTIC.  Russia marketing small nuclear reactors to the Arctic , (who cares about the toxic wastes?).

JAPANFukushima nuclear debris removal to be delayed due to pandemic.


UK. Unacceptable secrecy by the nuclear industry in Sizewell documentation.  UK’s quest for nuclear fusion.  No acknowledgment, no compensation, for a British nuclear test hero.

EUROPE. Chinese demands on nuclear power investment complicate EU talks.  Marketing nuclear technology to Slovakia.

UKRAINE.  Are forest fires unlocking radiation in Chernobyl?  Dredging of the Pripyat river poses danger of Chernobyl radioactivity to drinking water of 8 million people.  Storage of Chernobyl nuclear waste – in reality unsafe for 1000s of years.

SOUTH KOREA.  South Korea: mayors and governors of all 17 major cities and provinces call on Japan not to dump Fukushima radioactive water into the ocean.

NORTH KOREA.  Economic crisis forces North Korea to put new nuclear parade facilities on ice..

BELARUS.  EU visit to Belarus nuclear plant called off, deepening safety concerns.

IRAN Iran nuclear deal: ‘Heated rhetoric and the heightened risk of miscalculation’ widen differences.

CHINAChina rejects reports of hitch in investment pact talks with EU.

RUSSIA.  Russia keenly marketing nuclear technology to Bolivia.  Russian Army Chief Warns of Nuclear Risks in Cyber Hacks, Space .  Russia’s nuclear-powered ice-breaker in trouble.

Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) – lying and incompetent over Napandee nuclear waste dump fiasco

December 27, 2020

it does not matter what are the capabilities of the expert eventually selected by the tender offer as this will not overcame either the inherently unsuitable nature of Napandee for the government’s facility or the gross lack of regulatory compliance by the government of the internationally prescribed safety codes and regulatory requirements for the Napandee facility 

the disgraceful and insincere performance by the ANSTO management

28 Dec 20, It is amazing how much information you are given by various sources once you have begun to expose situations of improper or unfair conduct at a public level

I have just found out that ANSTO has approached two overseas experts in the field of nuclear waste to submit tenders in response to the tender offer published on 11 December 2021

In both instances the experts were told that their prime tasks would be  the corporatisation of the nuclear medicine facility at Lucas Heights as a separate entity to ANSTO and to establish the nuclear waste management facility at Napandee as planned by the federal government

It was suggested that the route to corporatise the nuclear medicine facility is now quite clear due to recent management changes at ANSTO

This probably relates to the resignation in rather unusual circumstances of Adrian Paterson as the chief executive officer of ANSTO since he was apparently against the corporate plans for the production of nuclear medicine

It was explained to the experts as to the other task that the Napandee facility has to reach operational status as quickly as possible and at the same time to discredit or prohibit the Azark Project underground repository at Leonora as this was proving a major embarrassment to the government

The words apparently used with regard to Azark were to “torpedo it” or “sink it”

It was suggested that the Leonora facility would cut across the efforts of the government to find a suitable location for the final disposal of the intermediate level waste which can only be stored at Napandee on a temporary basis

As neither of these experts has any presence in Australia which is a requirement of the tender ANSTO actually mentioned a couple of local groups who would be prepared to collaborate with those experts

While I am presently unable to verify this fact it seems that one of the overseas experts is linked with another expert group which is already a consultant for the Azark Project and it was also suggested that this consultancy be terminated as part of the tender process

If this can be established surely it is an attempt to lessen completion which becomes misleading and unconscionable conduct in trade or commerce under the Australian Consumer Law or is ANSTO exempt from any liability by Crown privilege?

However it does not matter what are the capabilities of the expert eventually selected by the tender offer as this will not overcame either the inherently unsuitable nature of Napandee for the government’s facility or the gross lack of regulatory compliance by the government of the internationally prescribed safety codes and regulatory requirements for the Napandee facility

You only need to watch the disgraceful and insincere performance by the ANSTO management at the Senate estimates committee hearing on 29 October 2020 including the inability to answer various questions which stemmed mainly from information I had given to the committee members

ANSTO has over 1,000 employees yet still suffers from gross errors in its operations and planning with seemingly little overview of its activities – moreover it remains a mystery what all these employees do because little realistic research and development has come from ANSTO.

No parliamentery sanctions for Australia’s Resources Minister, Keith Pitt, despite his lies and wrong statements

December 26, 2020
[Keith Pitt’s] complete disingenuity without attracting any parliamentary sanctions or chastising
No wonder The West Australian newspaper and its allied media sources gave Pitt an F for his ministerial efforts with the highest grading of course being A +
Peter Remta 26 Dec 20, How long can Keith Pitt remain with ministerial responsibility for such nationally important portfolios as water and mining and effectively the nuclear industry.
He continues to make statements that are in many instances plainly wrong and show his ignorance and in some cases his complete disingenuity without attracting any parliamentary sanctions or chastising.
No wonder The West Australian newspaper and its allied media
His comments seem to be aimed purely at gaining public credibility and attempting to sway the senators opposing his ill advised proposals
He cannot rely on his advisers and ministerial staff for his comments as the ultimate authority and control lies solely with him as the responsible minister.
No wonder The West Australian newspaper and its allied media sources gave Pitt an F for his ministerial efforts with the highest grading of course being A +…/australias-lying-minister…/

Silent Steven Marshall – cowardly silence from South Australia’s Premier on nuclear waste dump plan

December 25, 2020
Last week I posted about Minister Dan van Holst Pellekaan threatening me with legal costs in response to a Freedom of information (FOI) request for all correspondence between the Federal and SA State Government on the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility since Steven Marshall had become Premier of SA.
In 2016, when in opposition, Marshall stated he would not support the facility. After the SA ‘Citizens Jury’ handed down their verdict on a waste facility to Premier Weatherill, Marshall proclaimed, “Jay Weatherill’s dream of turning South Australia into a nuclear waste dump is now dead”.
What I got back under FOI was heavily redacted but shows Marshall, like a good lapdog to the Prime Minister, has remained silent on the issue.
It’s the same with keeping Submarine Full Cycle Docking work in SA, as the PM considers sending that work to WA – silence. Its the same with the Federal Government’s appointment of a irrigation supporting former NSW National to the position of Inspector-General of (Murray-Darling) Water Compliance – silence.
The Premier is free to determine his political position on these issues which affect South Australia’s interests. But he is obliged as Premier to share his position with South Australians and he should be prepared to defend whatever his view is. That’s what leaders do. Instead, on so many important issues, he’s just Silent Steven.

This week in nuclear news, Australia and more

December 22, 2020

‘Tis the season to be jolly.  But, honestly, I can’t.  If you want to know what’s really going on in this human-species-afflicted planet, I recommend Radio Ecoshock.  Here you will learn about  Climate Collapse & The Plastic Plague

It’s not about some distant future problem. It’s about now, and how we are living on a trashed planet.  And we’re and adding more to this with all our festive junk and unnecessary gifts.

Having said that –    there are so many good people trying to clean up, and keep clean, our fragile planet.   For some examples – I recommend  99 Good News Stories From 2020 You Probably Didn’t Hear About.

Also, I am reading “The Good Germans – resisting the NAZIs  1933 – 1945“, by Catrine Clay. I find this book a very timely reminder that in very worst of modern times, there were so many people who saw evil being done, and resisted it, and also helped the persecuted, as best they could.


2020 in Australia – a successful year for resistance to nuclear pollution.

Nuclear waste dump plan for Kimba, South Australia.  Senator Rex Patrick contests Freedom of Information refusal about Australia’s nuclear waste plan.  Federal govt accepted Queensland’s “NO” to nuclear dump. Why not South Australia’s?.  Senator Rex Patrick calls on South Australian govt to come clean about nuclear waste dumping. Australia’s Industry Department is bluffing in employing staff for non existent nuclear waste project

Ranger Danger: Rio Tinto Faces Its Nuclear Test in Kakadu Uranium – Unfinished Business: Rehabilitating the Ranger Uranium Mine .  Green group raise toxic leak concern at Ranger Uranium Mine

A reminder of the danger of ionising radiation, after theft of a nuclear device.

CLIMATE. The Usual Suspects: oil and gas majors star in Australian tax heist.    Australia, the climate laggard, could lead the world: over to you, PMHypocrisy on steroids: Frydenberg backs witch-hunt on banks that won’t lend to miners.


Sleepwalking Toward the Nuclear Precipice.

The insanity of nuclear power in space.

About writing about the nuclear crisis. We’re in a storytelling crisis”: Advice for writing on nuclear issues, from the author of “Fallout”.

Unveiling New Billboards: “Nukes Are Now Illegal!” (Nuclear Weapons) .

CANADA.  Canada’s Small Modular Nuclear Reactor ‘Action Plan’ banks on private sector nuclear pipe dreams.    NuScale exultant that their scam small nuclear reactors have conned the Canadian government.  Many Canadian organisations dispute the government’s plan for small nuclear reactors.


75% of the Japanese public want Japan to join the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.  Major Japan life insurers shun investing in nuclear weapons-linked firms.

Uninhabitable:   Booklet by citizen scientists uncovers true extent of radioactive contamination in Japan’s soil and food.

2 million yen ($19,300) incentive for families to move to near crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

Investigation of mass alterations of data on nuclear safety by Japanese company.

Mutsu Mayor Soichiro Miyashita made it clear that spent nuclear fuel facility will not go ahead44 year old Mihama nuclear station, with waste disposal problem may be allowed to restart.  Nuclear waste plan spells doom for a Hokkaido fishing community.



CHINA.  China has 350 nuclear warheads, compared to USA and Russia’s many thousands of them.

RUSSIA.  Russian environmental defenders under attack.

IRAN.  World powers renew commitment to preserve Iran nuclear deal.   Iran’s Rouhani: No conditions or negotiations on nuclear deal.  Iran builds at underground nuclear plant.   Iran Rejects New UN Report over Nuclear Violations.  West yet to condemn Iranian nuclear scientist’s assassination.

US Navy nuclear-powered guided-missile submarine and 2 warships sail through Strait of Hormuz, (Persian Gulf-Gulf of Oman).

EUROPE.  European Leadership Network appeals to nuclear weapons States to reduce nuclear risks.

UKRAINE.  34 years later, food crops near Chernobyl still contain ionising radiation.

TURKEY.  Turkey’s unfinished nuclear plant already redundant.

DENMARK.  Big boasts for small nuclear reactors on ships – but are they a recipe for disaster?

JORDAN.   Did a research reactor in Jordan leak?