Australia: Nuclear and Climate News to 25 October

60 Minutes Australia Fukushima report

International nuclear politics came to the fore this week. Trump says US will withdraw from nuclear arms treaty with Russia.  Trump threatens to build up U.S. nuclear arsenal against China, Russia.    Russia threatens to develop intermediate-range nuclear weapons in response to USA’s nuclear move.

Climate events are getting ever more complicated.  Polar jet circulation changes bring Sahara dust to Arctic, increasing temperatures, melting ice.   Arctic blast is set to sweep across Britain this week bringing sub-freezing temperatures of just 26F and wintery showers after an unseasonably warm autumn.

AUSTRALIA

NUCLEAR. The nuclear lobby got into high gear this week with an extraordinary TV programme on Channel 9’s “60 Minutes”. The episode could be best described as a nuclear infomercial. Australia’s top nuclear propagandist Ben Heard was in full control, as the reporter Tom Steinfort seemed unable  (or unwilling?) to ask any difficult questions.  A great disappointment, if Channel 9 has sold out to the nuclear lobby, particularly as 60 Minutes previously had a fine record of journalism, covering the Fukushima nuclear disaster. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4n05BeqPp1w

CLIMATE.

Wentworth election – a preview of climate change issue for Australia’s coming federal election – Liberal Party moderates blame climate policy for Wentworth by-election debacle.  Australia’s Treasurer Josh Frydenberg sticks to his pro fossil fuel guns. Barnaby Joyce calls the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) “wrong and ridiculous” about coal.

Climate change now firing up raging fight in Australia’s Morrison govt, after Wentworth byelection fiasco.  Coalition fast-tracks proposal for new “firm” generation, open to coal plant extensionsPM admits Australia Paris target toothless, Coalition completely at sea on energy .  Australian govt abandons promotion for dubious climate group.

Liberal moderates to demand $1 billion for climate change fund.  Kiribati’s Anote Tong, (slighted by Minister Melissa Price) says Australia must act on climate change.

Aboriginal Traditional Owners launch campaign challenging Origin Energy over NT fracking consents.

IN New Zealand, both sides of politics agree on action against climate change.

RENEWABLE ENERGY. Australia large scale solar output breaks through 1GW on Sunday.  Free rooftop solar for low-income households in NSW govt deal .  Microgrid funding to help Yackandandah reach 100% renewables .

INTERNATIONAL

PEACE BOAT AND GREENPEACE STILL CAMPAIGNING FOR FUKUSHIMA.

Gender and radiation impact project.  A false reference: “acceptable” radiation risks set as they affect adult men, not women, not children.

Nuclear weapons join the other cruel killing methods now pitched as games – entertainment.

USA 

RUSSIA.  Russia threatens to develop intermediate-range nuclear weapons in response to USA’s nuclear move.

SAUDI ARABIA. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to reveal evidence of Khashoggi murder “in all its nakedness.”

FRANCE.   France’s nuclear regulator fears that the Flamanville nuclear reactor has other problems as well as defective welds.   A nifty way to transition from gas-powered vehicles to solar-powered.

JAPAN. Four Japan firms used foreign trainees to clean up at Fukushima plant after nuclear meltdowns: final report.  Japan will flush unsafe water from Fukushima nuclear plant into sea.   Local Fury and Health Concerns as Japan Plans to Dump a Million Tons of Radioactive Fukushima Water Into Ocean.  Added ‘development’ in the Medical Data Obtained from Minami-soma Municipal General Hospital in Fukushima.

UK. Nuclear Security UK – bolstering defences against a terror attack. Auditors question government handling of H Hinkley Point C nuclear power station from its Major Projects Portfolio.

CANADA. The dangerous radioactive trash – 60,000 tons on the shores of the Great Lakes. Majority of Ottawa candidates oppose Chalk River nuclear dump.  SNC-Lavalin shares fall to lowest since 2016 on news foreign bribery case will go to court.

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