Nuclear news this week

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The Australian Nuclear Free Alliance (ANFA) met in Alice Springs, with impressive representation from 14 Aboriginal nations, and 16 prominent community organisations from across the land. Their 2014 statement can be read at Beyond Nuclear Initiative . It covers Radioactive waste, Uranium mining, Mine rehabilitation, Women’s health, Men’s health, Weapons, Rare Earths, Land Councils, and the ANFA Network.

Australian National University (ANU) announcing it is divesting from fossil fuel investment. Credit to the students who lobbied so hard for this. Credit to ANU too, BUT – the university is keeping its investments in those unethical uranium mining companies BHP and Rio Tinto.

Australia’s Dr Helen Caldicott (– a prophet without honour in her own country?) is speaking publicly at a number of venues in USA – the National Press Club , in Plymouth, Massachusetts,  and with Ralph Nader  at  October 25 – 26  – New York TEACH-IN:  TECHNO-UTOPIANISM & THE FATE OF THE EARTH.

Abbott’s latest ?achievements – Squashing renewable energy development initiatives,.  Also Abbott posed sentimentally with Aboriginal children, while his government erodes Aboriginal land rights with 99 year leases. Abbott government is ignoring the effect that climate change will have, is already having, on Aboriginal communities, disempowering remote communities,  cutting funding to Aboriginal child and family centres, cutting funding to Indigenous legal aid,  and a Budget plan to  remove half a billion dollars from Indigenous programs administered by the Prime Minister and Cabinet and Health portfolios.Meanwhile – off to war without any community consultation, no formal debate in Parliament, despite Greens’ efforts to initiate one.

Interesting digression. Have you been watching ABC TV’s “The Code”  (ABC TV Sundays 8.30 pm)? Its story centres around  a truck accident, in which uranium – some kind of  radioactive gas was released  Last night’s episode revealed that the fictional company Physanto was transporting uranium  – in  a secret bid to develop Laser Enrichment Technology..

Strange, as that technology has already been developed by Silex. with ANSTO’s support (or I think it was an offshoot of ANSTO)
Silex sold it, with great fanfare, to GE. GE subsequently abandoned it  – for reasons of (a) cost, and (b) its potential for nuclear weapons proliferation.
INTERNATIONAL
Japan. Authorities exercise tight control over public meetings held to persuade communities to back nuclear power.
Fukushima – Recent typhoon caused big increase in radioactive releases
USA . New nuclear build cannot go ahead without reactor licenses, which must comply with Atomic Energy Act. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s new Generic Environmental Impact Statement (GEIS) is not likely to meet the requirements of the Act, in relation to waste disposal. New legal action can be expected, to contest the GEIS.
Federal judge upholds the ban on uranium mining near the Grand Canyon.
New book by Julian Assange  When Google Met WikiLeaks examines Google’s role in USA ‘s surveillance operations.
UK – approval from EU for UK’s Hinkley nuclear project is not well received by economists, as well as by environmentalists. The Hinkley project is by no means a done deal.
Anniversary of Windscale nuclear accident last week. Information on this accident now declassified.
Radioactive waste transport ship catches fire. drifts off course – oil rig crew evacuated.
Canada’s Nuclear Safety Commission orders potassium iodide tablets and emergency instructions to be given to all residents in the range of eight to 16 kilometres of a nuclear power plant, and pills ready for an 80-kilometre zone kept at nuclear plants.
South Africa – secret deals with nuclear industries of Russia and France have got the government into a political mess.
South Korea –  City of Samcheok votes NO to nuclear power
Czech Republic US-Japanese company Westinghouse Electric Company pretty desperate to sell nuclear reactors, is adopting the nuke lobby’s new strategy of financing the purchase. Westinghouse pays now, the nation pays up forever afterwards.
Iran. With all that’s going on in the Middle East, the need for reconciliation with Iran is now urgent
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