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Why are they all buying into the fantasy of ”new nuclear”, and propping up ”old nuclear”

January 22, 2022

The Bitter Truth

is that the ”peaceful” ”economically viable” nuclear industry is clearly failing.

All nuclear nations are devoted to their nuclear weapons industry. So the commercial nuclear industry must be kept alive – as it is essential to the weapons industry, including in space.

The other reasons.

The macho men and ”visionary” billionaires must see their dreams fulfilled – at tax-payer expense, of course.

It is too costly to shut down old big nuclear reactors, – by propping them up – extending their licences – those costs are passed on to our grandchildren.

The slick, smart, amoral, lobbying gang are ever on the job, feeding nuclear spin to media, politicians, and us.

They have no conscience, and no wisdom, and they sure don’t care about our grandchildren.

Nuclear news this week

October 18, 2021

The past week has seen a bigger than usual burst of news items about small nuclear reactors (SMRs) – with  numerous claims about how SMRs are going to be the focus of a nuclear revival that will combat climate change. In country after country, political leaders announce SMRs  as a central part of their climate policy, even reversing policies to phase out nuclear power. France is the leading example. There’s even a very interesting logic that goes like this: 
‘Big nuclear power reactors are unsustainable: therefore small nuclear reactors will be sustainable” –  as they say in all those police shows on TV – copy that!


Pandemic 
Coronavirus around the world.

 The climate disaster is here.  Climate. Earth is already becoming unlivable. Will governments act to stop this disaster from getting worse?


Some bits of good news.–  Solar-Powered Desalination Device Will Turn Sea Water Into Fresh Water For 400,000 People.  World’s First Totally-Green Tractor Set to Plow Down European Farming Emissions

AUSTRALIA.

  AUKUS nuclear submarines deal must be abandoned.     Australia’s nuclear submarines are looking more and more like a mirageUncertain delivery date for nuclear submarines. Australia’s existing fleet still in use in 2050? Inquiry to question whether Australia needs nuclear industry to support submarine program.   Senate Inquiry quizzes Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) and Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) on infrastructure needs for nuclear submarines.

New push for nuclear energy in Australia, but does it really stand the test? Pro nuclear argument has ‘more holes than Swiss cheese’ – Ian Lowe. Nuclear power is too expensive for AustraliaCollapse of the nuclear industry‘s ”golden hope”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DvpmGP8P6Mk

‘It makes us sick’: remote NT community wants answers about uranium in its water supply.

INTERNATIONAL.

Bizarre twists in USA’s war on Julian Assange and Wikileaks.

Epidemiology – research on baby teeth gives valuable information on health effects of ionising radiation.

What Does Building A Nuclear Power Station Mean for CO2 Emissions As We Near COP26 ?

Crypto currency and nuclear power – a worrying partnership.

Smoke from nuclear war would devastate ozone layer, alter climate.

The scale of global e-waste .

Vale Sister Megan Rice – an anti-nuclear hero. Libbe HaLevy’s interview with Sister Megan Rice 2019.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_cguuNy-3U

Prince William: Saving Earth should come before space tourism.

Catholic Archbishop at UN urges immorality of nuclear weapons, and of militarising space.

Patients lack knowledge on radiation in medical imaging,

JAPANNuclear hawks under Kishida threaten Suga’s renewables push. Japan’s new pro nuclear push – and for small nuclear reactors. Lethal radiation levels detected in Fukushima nuclear plant reactor lid . Japan’s new PM won’t delay release of contaminated water into ocean.

CHINA. US nuclear submarine accident sparks safety fears in South China Sea.

EUROPE. European Commission urges member states to speed up solar energy deployment .

Prince William: Saving Earth should come before space tourism.

Catholic Archbishop at UN urges immorality of nuclear weapons, and of militarising space.

Patients lack knowledge on radiation in medical imaging,

JAPANNuclear hawks under Kishida threaten Suga’s renewables push. Japan’s new pro nuclear push – and for small nuclear reactors. Lethal radiation levels detected in Fukushima nuclear plant reactor lid . Japan’s new PM won’t delay release of contaminated water into ocean.

CHINA. US nuclear submarine accident sparks safety fears in South China Sea.

EUROPE. European Commission urges member states to speed up solar energy deployment .

USA.

FRANCE

UK. 

INDIA. India, China and the new missile silos.

BELGIUM. Belgium’s Energy Minister calls for the government to speed up plan to shut down nuclear reactors.

GERMANYNuclear power is not sustainable energy – German environment ministry.

NEW ZEALANDKeep space for peace – opposition to New Zealand’s space industry and its military connections.

PHILIPPINES. AUKUS and the Philippines – sleepwalking into military-nuclear entanglements.  

Pandora Papers reveal world’s Tax Avoidance B-Team. Where’s the A-Team?

October 10, 2021

Nuclear Radiation – Incompatible with Life

October 6, 2021

Eiichiro Ochiai – from  Nuclear Issues  in the  21st Century  – Invisible Radiation Effects on Life,As argued in this whole book, the basic reason for “NO NPP on the Earth” is “Radiation is Not Compatible with Life”.  What this means is that life cannot defend itself against the damaging effects of radiation.   This has been true throughout the whole history of life on earth, though such effect by the naturally occurring radiation is minimal, and cannot be identified as such unless careful and systematic studies are conducted.  This issue is discussed in chapter 11. 

The radiation effects on human health have increased since the human started to add radioactive materials artificially to the environment.  This is a fact, and needs to be recognized by the entire human race,

Very Small Quantity of Radioactive Nuclides can be Lethal 

It was argued in section xxx why external exposure of such a small energy (10 Gy) is lethal. This energy is to raise the body temperature by only 0.0024 degrees.  The following is an example of lethal internal radiation caused by a much smaller radiation exposure.

 One of the Bandazhevsky investigations showed that the Cs-137 Bq value in the heart was 200 Bq/kg on average in those died from heart failure after Chernobyl accident [Fig. 8.x on original].  This radioactivity is caused by 6 x 10-11 g of Cs-137.   If the body (heart) was exposed to this radiation activity for a year, the exposure dose would have been about 1 mGy/kg.  In terms of ICRP and other such organizations’ estimate, this low level exposure should have no significant health effect.  The fact is that it was lethal.  This radiation source emitted 6.3 x 109 radioactive particles. Assuming 1 MeV per particle, the exposure would have destroyed about 1 x 1014 molecules in the heart cells.  Some critically important molecules for heart activity could have been destroyed; hence heart failure and death.

This is to illustrate how small quantities of radionuclides can be lethal.  If this argument is reasonable, even smaller quantities can be supposed to be able to cause serious diseases, including cancers.

he operation of NPP inevitably produces a large amount of radioactive material.  Typically 3-4 kg of U-235 will be burned per day at a NPP, so that a NPP burns about 1 tons of U-235 per year.  The basic problem is to dispose safely the radioactive nuclides.

     The wastes we produce, whether biological or industrial, can be dealt with.  The biological wastes can be thrown into “toilet”, after which they are processed chemically, biologically, otherwise and eventually returned in harmless forms back to the environment.  They can be used as manure, as well.  Or animals’ wastes are collected and dried, and then used as fuel without any harm to people in certain regions.  These ways of dealing with the wastes are possible because they are chemicals.  Of course the problems are not simply theoretical matters, and are big problems in reality, as exemplified by the “plastic wastes”.

NPP have no toilet for its radioactive wastes; the spent fuel rods are typically stored in cooling pools.  The radioactive wastes produce both heat and radiation through decaying processes.  When the fuel rods become sufficiently cool after certain period of time (years), they would be transferred into sturdy containers being cooled by air, and no further treatment.  Well they are supposed to be deposited in deep caves where they would be left in forever.  The basic problem with radionuclides is that we, chemical means, cannot change them to the non-radioactive.  Therefore, they are left radioactive; some of them last million years (see Fig. 24.1).  How safely they are stored in such places (deep cave, etc) is a good question.  Geological activities may damage the containers or radioactivity may be enough to damage the containers for such a long period (may feel forever for human race).

Auustralia’s Nuclear submarines will be obsolete- this week we focus on the AUKUS submarine mess

September 22, 2021

Why will they be obsolete?

Because of the rapid advances in artificial intelligence (AI), detection systems and signal processing, combined with swarming autonomous unmanned systems – by 2040 these present USA and UK models will probably be too easily detectable, and so, effectively useless.

Why does Australia want nuclear submarines?

  • So that America can use them to patrol South China Sea as part of uSA’s increased military presence
  • So that Scott Morrison can push the fear of China message heading for the khaki election.
  • Other reasons – helping the USA by buying these very costly submarines which are not particularly useful for monitoring our coastline, but good for long distance. Helping Scott Morrison to look important on the world stage.

    With nuclear submarines, at last #ScottyFromMarketing gets to play with the big boys

    September 20, 2021

    Scott Morrison’s decision on nuclear submarines is his first foray into the murly world of Khaki electioneering. A pity that Joe Biden doesn’t even remember Morrison’s name. But no matter -the big thing is to sell super expensive U.S. nuclear technology to a willing, if somewhat ignorant and unimporrtant customer.

    During the coming week, this website will feature the various aspects of this extraordinarily unwise decision, (while not ignoring other important Australian nuclear issues.)

    Sloppy and unconvincing pro nuclear propaganda from the Australian Nationals and the Murdochracy

    September 9, 2021

    The Australian nuclear promotion is less persuasive. Coming predominantly from Murdoch media, the content of nuclear propaganda is sloppy, inaccurate, and at times downright weird

    The Nationals and Murdoch media support nuclear power ahead of COP26, Independent Australia,By Noel Wauchope | 9 September 2021.

    On 1 September 2021, Senator Matt Canavan called for Australia to boycott the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) to be held in Glasgow in November. 

    Was he speaking on behalf of the coal or oil industries? Well, not exactly. 

    This was the latest and strangest call from Australia’s noisy little band of pro-nuclear promoters. Canavan was responding to the news that the nuclear industry has been banned from having exhibits at COP26. He complained that the Climate Summit was a ”sham” for excluding nuclear power, a view supported by MP Ken O’Dowd.

    O’Dowd said that nuclear power should be at the top of the climate agenda. Other National Party notables, David Littleproud and Bridget McKenzie, recently spoke out for nuclear power.

    Like the nuclear industry worldwide, they are now taking up the cause of climate action with a vengeance. The nuclear lobby’s motives are clear. First, they likely want the tax exemptions and other subsidies that come with being declared as clean and sustainable. Secondly, they need that seal of approval, the public respectability which goes with acquiring the clean and green label.

    The global lobby’s most persuasive argument is that a nuclear reactor’s operation generates a lot of electricity, with only a minuscule production of CO2

    They don’t, of course, talk about the processes of the nuclear fuel chain from uranium mining through to demolition of dead reactors and disposal of wastes. Their favourite phrase ”emissions-free energy” doesn’t count emissions of radioactive strontium-90.

    The Australian nuclear promotion is less persuasive. Coming predominantly from Murdoch media, the content of nuclear propaganda is sloppy, inaccurate, and at times downright weird. The Australian newspaper provides two outstanding examples

    The first is this eye-catching article Savvy activists cast nuclear benefits in a fresh green light  subtitled:

    ‘For baby boomers, nuclear weapons and nuclear energy were conflated as an existential risk. This created an irrational fear that persists today.’

    From the outset, the argument is an attack on anti-nuclear activists, instead of arguing the case for nuclear power.

    The hero of the piece is Zion Lights, formerly of Extinction Rebellion, who created her own pro-nuclear group, Emergency Reactor.

    She works closely with Michael Shellenberger, who, himself, has lost the support of the general nuclear lobby, due to his many inaccurate statements. Zion Lights and The Australian go into a lengthy digression on the foibles of the baby boomers, who have ‘conflated nuclear weapons and nuclear energy as an existential risk that could wipe out humanity’.

    The health effects of the Chernobyl and Fukushima disasters are minimised and renewable energy is rubbished as being ineffective.

    The author, Claire Lehmann, concludes that the too-slow movement towards carbon neutrality is the fault of the misguided anti-nuclear baby boomers.

    The second article is ‘Nuclear stacks up — cue the meltdown‘ by Greg Sheridan, who starts by accusing Australians as being ‘environmental outliers’ for prohibiting nuclear power…………..

    the main thrust of this pro-nuclear argument moves on to an attack on Labor, the Greens and so forth:

    ‘… the deadly, wretched, wholly negative, nihilistic scare campaigns and demonising that the ALP left and its Green allies have conducted against nuclear energy.’

    There is no attempt to address any of the worrying issues that surround nuclear power  costs, safety, environmental damage, radioactive waste. He reminds us that Bill Gates backs nuclear power. Well of course Gates does  he owns a nuclear power company, Terra Power.

    He also quotes the European Union (EU) as backing nuclear power. While several EU countries do have nuclear power, the EU as a whole is not recommending nuclear powers as a climate solution. In fact, the nuclear industry is banned from exhibiting at the green zone at COP26………

    As I write this comes the breathtaking news that the Murdoch media is changing its attitude to global warming. From a rather crude sort of climate denialism, they will likely move to supporting technical “climate fixes” spruiked by the fossil fuel industries. This is a more subtle way of sabotaging real climate action. 

    Perhaps we can expect them also to provide something more credible on the nuclear issue in the future. https://independentaustralia.net/environment/environment-display/the-nationals-and-murdoch-media-support-nuclear-power-ahead-of-cop26,15496

    Friends of the Earth and Sierra Club saw it coming – corruption is killing the nuclear industry

    September 5, 2021
    Friends of the Earth and Sierra club saw it coming

    Public interest intervenors were prescient in their early assessments of the project. Friends of the Earth, which intervened before the Public Service Commission against the project in August 2008, noted SCANA’s disregard for energy efficiency and alternative forms of energy. That organization predicted that the project’s fate would be what the US Attorney’s Office affirmed in the August 18, 2021 indictment: “from the outset, the Project was characterized by cost overruns and significant delays.” Likewise, toward the end of the project in June 2017, just after Westinghouse declared bankruptcy, Friends of the Earth and the Sierra Club filed a formal complaint detailing why the project must be canceled. As money hemorrhaged, the owners made that earth-shaking decision a month later. And the mighty crash still reverberates.

    With pursuit of large light-water reactors in the United States all but dead, the nuclear industry is now endlessly touting an array of “small modular reactors” and a dizzying menu of so-called “advanced reactors,” all of which exist only on paper. It’s unclear if there’s a path forward for this nuclear renaissance redux, and if there is, whether taxpayers will be put on the hook for financing some of it.

    US attorney details illegal acts in construction projects, sealing the fate of the “nuclear renaissance”  https://thebulletin.org/2021/08/us-attorney-details-illegal-acts-at-construction-projects-sealing-the-fate-of-the-nuclear-renaissance/By Tom Clements | August 31, 2021

    The ill-fated construction of new nuclear reactors in South Carolina—one of two such troubled Westinghouse reactor construction projects in the United States—was abruptly terminated on July 31, 2017, but the effort to determine legal accountability for the project’s colossal failure is only now hitting its stride.

    The South Carolina legislature conducted hearings about the project’s collapse. But it has fallen to the United States Attorney for South Carolina to outline internal decisions that led to project abandonment—via court filings, plea agreements, and indictments. These filings are proving to be the best documentation so far of criminal behavior related to projects that were part of a much-hyped “nuclear renaissance” that began in the early-2000s but has since petered out in the United States.

    On August 18, 2021, a second Westinghouse official was charged in a federal grand jury indictment filed with the court in Columbia, South Carolina. The charges outline “the scheme” to cover up key details about the problem-plagued project to construct two 1,100 megawatt (MW) Westinghouse AP1000 light-water reactors at the VC Summer site north of Columbia.

    The project was initiated in May 2008 and gained final approval in February 2009.

    According to the 18-page indictment, former Senior Vice President of New Plants and Major Projects Jeffrey Benjamin “had first-line responsibility for Westinghouse’s nuclear reactors worldwide.” He was charged, according to a news release, “with sixteen felony counts including conspiracy, wire fraud, securities fraud, and causing a publicly-traded company to keep a false record.” On August 30, the US attorney’s office announced that Benjamin would be arraigned on August 31.

    The indictment reveals important new information about how Benjamin and Westinghouse conspired to hide crucial information about reactor completion dates from the owners, the publicly held utility SCANA, now defunct, and its junior partner, the state-owned South Carolina Public Service Authority (known as Santee Cooper). It states that the defendant made “false and misleading statements” and “knowingly devised a scheme” to continue the project based on misrepresentations via Westinghouse to the owners, state regulators, the Securities and Exchange Commission, investors, and ratepayers. Nervous SCANA officials played along with the inept cover-up efforts and passed on false and inaccurate information to regulators.

    (more…)

    Eight vital questions about Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) and its nuclear wastes.

    August 18, 2021

    With respect to the new building being applied for by ANSTO, the extended storage of ANSTO’s Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste on-site at Lucas Heights is warranted – until there is an availability of a proper final disposal option for ALL of the nuclear waste which ANSTO produces and generates. This is the only way that Australians will accept shifting this nuclear waste anywhere other than leaving it safely on site!

    What the proposed Kimba site is, put simply, is the last site standing, from a greedy nominator and a dubious selection process and a very flawed and out dated proposal!

    Lucas Heights is the very best place for this waste currently. Until a proper solution is found for ALL of the waste ANSTO produces – trotting out the exact same proposal from forty years ago is not a solution.

    The new Intermediate Level Solid Waste Storage Facility at ANSTO Lucas Heights should be supported. And here are the reasons why. Kazzi Jai , Fight to Stop a Nuclesr Waste Dump in the Flinders Ranges, 15 Aug 21,

    ANSTO’s Work Health Safety and Environment Policy includes the statement,

    We are committed to effective stewardship, the sustainability of our operations and to responsibly interact with the local ecology and biosphere, and to protect it. We will minimize our environmental footprint through the sustainable use of resources and by the prevention, minimization and control of pollution.

    Powerful words, but does ANSTO mean them?

    Their current “stewardship” is to safely and securely deal with ALL the waste that they produce on site. The usage of the word “interim” (or “temporary” which was used in the past) simply refers to dry storage. In other words it does not make Lucas Heights a permanent disposal site for this waste. Other nuclear reactors around the world hold their nuclear site close to where it is generated – it makes good logical sense, because that means it can be monitored and is safe and secure.

    The “sustainability” of their operations should include ANSTO’s (given their expertise in this field over the decades) continued stewardship of the waste they generate and produce on site.

    It is a logical conclusion, since they were in fact, allowed the replacement reactor (now known as OPAL) to be constructed with the continued stewardship of the nuclear waste right there on site.

    This means that the sustainability of ANSTO is, and remains, contingent on responsibility of generating this nuclear waste in the first place.

    1. Why is OPAL research nuclear reactor being touted as commercial one?

    .ANSTO’s OPAL reactor is after all a research reactor – and that should be its main objective – research. But it is being used for more than that – it is being used for the industrial production of isotopes primarily diagnostic isotopes.

    The OPAL reactor is currently used predominately for the production of what is termed in general terms nuclear medicine…. of which approximately 80% of its primary usage is for the production of Molybdenum-99 – which then decays to Technitium-99m (Tc-99m) – which is then used in diagnostic imaging in nuclear medicine. Not all diagnostic imaging in nuclear medicine uses Tc-99m.

    This is as pointed out earlier, a commercial industrial production usage of the OPAL reactor.

    We are told that our use of Technitium-99m in Australia is approximately 550 000 “available” doses a year according to ANSTO. We were told by Adi Paterson in 2017 Senate Estimates that Australia was using 28% of Technitium-99m generated by ANSTO, and the rest (72%) was exported overseas. At that stage, the export quantity involved equated to 1% of global demand of Technitium-99m. (5) But now ANSTO wants to increase their commercial production of export to 10 MILLION DOSES PER YEAR FOR EXPORT! That would make ANSTO one of the FOUR MAJOR PRODUCERS of Technitium-99m in the world!(6) But with increased EXPORT comes INCREASED WASTE PRODUCTION!

    ANSTO cites COMMERCIAL SENSITIVITY regarding whether the production of Technitium-99m is viable or not – the public are not privy to the details of this information. But the Australian public are the ones SUBSIDIZING this COMMERCIAL VENTURE! Canada got out of isotope production simply because they could no longer justify the cost to their taxpayers!

    But not all is doom and gloom! Canada have just released (December 2020) the approval of cyclotron-produced technetium-99m by Health Canada. (1)

    ANSTO is also somewhat careful not to mention that they own PETTECH (which trades as PETTECH Solutions), which operates two medical cyclotrons for radiopharmaceutical production at the Lucas Heights campus. PETTECH has routinely supplied NSW hospitals as part of a state tender. In 2019 they sold it off to private company Cyclotek. (2)

    Cyclotrons are also found in our major cities. In fact Australia has 18 cyclotrons according to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) 2019 listing. (3)

    Cyclotrons are usually found also in partnerships with imaging services. This is because cyclotrons are used generally with PET scans which allow very precise scans of many parts of the body to be achieved. The thing with cyclotrons is that they do not produce nuclear isotopes and therefore do not produce nuclear waste. Cyclotrons produce isotopes as required by demand.

    The world is changing with regards to nuclear medicine. Cyclotrons are coming into their own right. The field of imaging and diagnosis doesn’t rely solely on one technology only. CT-scans, MRI -scans, Ultrasounds – all can be used in conjunction with PET or SPEC scans. And the cutting edge advancements in cancer treatment is now immunotherapy and nanotechnology. Even LINAC machines – the ones used in radiotherapy and do not use a nuclear source and therefore do not produce nuclear waste because they use a Linear Accelerator to produce a high density x-ray beam to treat cancers, may be superseded by proton therapy units which again use a specific accelerator to treat cancers on an atomic level with minimum disruption to normal cells. Minimizing the damage done to normal cells is becoming more and more important in treating cancers. This cannot be done with radioactive isotopes simply because there is no control with regards to their decay and release into normal tissue.

    ““We can get product from Sydney to Boston as efficiently as it can be shipped there from Europe,” Shaun Jenkinson, ANSTO Nuclear Business Group Executive boasted in 2014.

    With radioactive elements, time is of the essence. Technetium-99m has a half-life of just six hours, which means half of it will have decayed into something else in that time. This is why it is shipped as its precursor, molybdenum-99, which has a half-life of 2.75 days.”, he went on to say

    .ANSTO’s molybdenum-99 exports bring in over $10 million each year to Australia. This figure is set to triple after 2016, when its new $100 million nuclear medicine processing facility starts up, bringing with it 250 new jobs.” (4)

    Mr Jenkinson, who now is CEO of ANSTO replacing Adi Paterson, was at great pains in 2014 to point out that ANSTO could get “product” from Sydney to Boston efficiently. How about the other way round? Our usage of “product” – namely Molybdenium-99 (decays to Tc-99m) is very small in Australia. It actually hasn’t changed all that much even before the advent of OPAL replacing HIFAR in 2007, and with cyclotrons, will probably decrease even more in usage, given advancement in technologies – which is naturally what happens in any field! Why shouldn’t we produce Technitium-99m on cyclotrons like Canada are now doing, or import what we need in Australia – something we do regularly anyway when OPAL is offline for maintenance or other reasons for shutdown. Is ANSTO possibly providing Molybdenium99 (Technitium-99m isotope) below cost price simply to remain a player in the global market, and being propped up by the Australian taxpayer?

    Is there still a window of opportunity for such a massive commitment to produce up to quarter of the world’s global demand given that the demand just may not be there any longer?

    2. And anyway, is Lucas Height’s medical isotope still a viable proposition?

    But is Is it still a viable proposition given the expense already occurring with dealing with the Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste generated by the industrial production of Molybdenium-99. In fact again in Senate Estimates Adi Paterson stated (as part of answers to questions) that increasing output of Molybdenium-99 will in fact increase generation of liquid Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste! (7)This is the liquid part of the production of Molybdenium-99 ….which in itself is classified as Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste. This is separate to the reprocessed spent fuel rods in TN-81 casks plus the Intermediate Level technological waste sent back as equivalent nuclear waste from France.

    3.Is the expense of ANSTO’s Synroc process justified ?

    Then we have the expense of putting the liquid intermediate level nuclear waste generated from the industrial production of Molybdenium-99 into solid form via a process only Australia uses – Synroc. Why has no other place in the world grabbed the technology using Synroc? Is it because it is too expensive to warrant using? Or is it because Synroc is no different to vitrification into glass which is already being used? Regardless, both techniques still require intact shielding of the final waste product – whether it be Synroc or glass.

    4. Is tax-payer funded ANSTO accountable for the decisions they make?

    All of these points made should be investigated, rather than rubber stamped by committees who say that “ANSTO is doing a great job” – without actually asking the hard questions, and making ANSTO accountable for the decisions they make.

    5.Is it sensible to transport nuclear waste 1700km to a small agricultural community, far from the essential nuclear expertise

    With respect to the new building being applied for by ANSTO, the extended storage of ANSTO’s Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste on-site at Lucas Heights is warranted – until there is an availability of a proper final disposal option for ALL of the nuclear waste which ANSTO produces and generates. This is the only way that Australians will accept shifting this nuclear waste anywhere other than leaving it safely on site! The current proposal is flawed in so many ways – the largest gaping flaw is the deliberate intention of transporting Intermediate Level Waste and Nuclear Fuel Waste over state border, over 1700 kms across Australia, into a small agricultural community which exports grain and sheep ….and which has NEVER had any past or current dealings with the nuclear industry EVER…and leave it there SIMPLY AS DRY STORAGE IN THE SAME WAY THAT IT IS HELD AT LUCAS HEIGHTS…without the SAME security, safety and monitoring expertise as Lucas Heights has right there on site at a moment’s notice!

    Should there develop a problem with say the TN-81 cask, do you think ANSTO will want it transported back to Lucas Heights – back across 1700kms? Remember too, that the TN-81 casks have only a 40 year guaranteed manufacturer’s warranty. What will happen after 40 years, when in all likelihood the cask will need replacing? Where is the Hot Cell for dealing with this waste in any possible timeframe when a problem with the seal, or a crack in the shielding – the only thing actually enabling safe handling and storage – may develop? Where in the middle of a wheat field in the middle of Australia will the expertise be? It won’t be in Kimba! In fact it won’t be in South Australia! And in fact it won’t actually be ANSTO’s problem!!

    What the proposed Kimba site is, put simply, is the last site standing, from a greedy nominator and a dubious selection process and a very flawed and out dated proposal! Read the AECOM report – which they take great pains to point out was preliminary at best – to find out more! Lots of mitigation required with the Kimba site! So much for dealing with this waste in the MOST SAFE way possible WITH NO EXPENSE SPARED, given that this waste is classified as requiring intact shielding to be handled safely and to stop possible contamination to the environment.

    Nuclear Waste must be dealt with in the utmost safe conditions with no expense spared. Nuclear waste – this is classified by ARPANSA, so there is no subjective input into this classification – must be highly regulated when it comes to handling and dealing with it. And this also take into account classification as well as quantity. Low level nuclear waste has a classified life of 300 years to decay back to background levels. Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste has a classified life of 1000 years….and High Level Nuclear Waste 1000’s of years – much longer than any of us here today! Even 300 years for the Low Level Nuclear Waste in comparison is BEFORE European colonization of Australia – for that comparison to be put it into perspective!

    6. Why the pretend urgency, when Lucas Heights can safely store the nuclear waste until 2060 or beyond?

    ANSTO owns and manages approximately 500 hectares at Lucas Heights. Of that, only 70 hectares has been developed by ANSTO.The OPAL reactor has a lifetime of 50 years. It was commissioned in 2007. That takes us into 2060…and then even if it was the end of the use of the reactor, the spent fuel rods from the reactor must be kept ON SITE in the holding cooling ponds for a further 8-10 years BEFORE there is any chance of dealing with them. So there is no urgency to shift ANY of this waste until a proper solution is found to deal with ALL of this waste – Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste FIRST and the Low Level Nuclear Waste can follow that! Handled once only – no double handling! Double handling is definitely against International Best Practise!

    7. How much Federal money goes to ANSTO, compared with other scientific research?

    What would be interesting is to know how much the Federal Government injects into ANSTO budget every year since its inception! There are over 1000 staff employed at ANSTO. How much of the Federal science budget is used up by ANSTO? Is it at the expense of other sciences like CSIRO and other research endeavours not involving nuclear science?To include into the argument by ANSTO that the proviso of construction of the new Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste storage building at Lucas Heights is contingent on the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility (NRWMF) is up and running, is disingenuous since the NRWMF hasn’t even been declared yet!…let alone licenced!

    8. Is it alright for ANSTO to cease all responsibility for its nuclear wastes, once they are sent to Kimba?

    And keep in mind, ANSTO will ONLY be a customer for this proposed dump. ANSTO will not play any part in its management or development, apart from perhaps on a consultative basis. There is no “stewardship” involvement of ANSTO with this NRWMF – they wash their hands and books of all responsibility of the waste THAT THEY PRODUCE once it lands at the gates of the NRWMF!

    The proposal part for the Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste and Nuclear Fuel Waste is to leave it in the proposed TOTALLY ALL ABOVE GROUND NRWMF in INDEFINITE STORAGE which means it will be there essentially forever – in layman’s terms known as STRANDED or ZOMBIE WASTE – not to be dealt with any time soon in the future!

    This is a forty year old proposal which has been dragged out yet again, WITHOUT ONE RED CENT SPENT on dealing with the Intermediate Level Nuclear Waste properly at all! “Tag-a-long” does not equate to dealing with this waste properly!

    It is simply making this a case of putting this waste “out of sight and out of mind”!

    Lucas Heights is the very best place for this waste currently. Until a proper solution is found for ALL of the waste ANSTO produces – trotting out the exact same proposal from forty years ago is not a solution.

    The indefinite Store for ANSTO nuclear fuel waste & ILW in South Australia IS UNTENABLE, as the CURRENT PROPOSAL by the Federal Government have put forward.

    And that is why the additional Intermediate Level Nuclear Storage building must be allowed to be built at Lucas heights.

    1. https://www.triumf.ca/…/cyclotron-produced-technetium…2. https://www.cyclotek.com/cyclotek-acquires-the-business…/3. https://nucleus.iaea.org/…/public_cyclotron_db_view.aspx4. https://www.ansto.gov.au/news/going-global-nuclear-medicine5. https://www.aph.gov.au/…/Industry/answers/AI-5_Ludlam.pdf6. https://www.aph.gov.au/…/Industry/answers/AI-6_Ludlam.pdf7. https://www.aph.gov.au/…/Industry/answers/AI-7_Ludlam.pdfAPH.GOV.AUwww.aph.gov.au

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/941313402573199

    NO SUPPORT for NUCLEAR in the new report from Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC)

    August 10, 2021

    10 Aug 21, The report is comprehensive on the present and future impacts of global heating, and on what needs to be done. But nuclear power as a method for action is not included.

    Indeed, nuclear power is barely mentioned, and when it is, its negative effects on climate and environment are mentioned.

    Page 236 line 39 – “Radioactive fallout from atmospheric nuclear weapons testing (1940s–1950s) and urban smog (1950s– 1960s) first provoked widespread attention to anthropogenic aerosols and ozone in the troposphere”

    Page 261 – reference to nuclear war and volcanic eruptions

    Page 309 – another reference to impacts of nuclear weapons

    Page 971 – line 23 – reference to a nuclear holocaust – in reference to future uncertainties

    Page 1380 – line 33 discussion on 14C released from nuclear weapons uptake into the ocean

    Page 3161 – line 15 – 17 “Thermal and nuclear electricity plants may be challenged when using warmer river waters for cooling or when mixing waste waters back into waterways without causing ecosystem impacts (Kopytko and Perkins, 2011; van Vliet et al., 2016; Tobin et al., 2018)

      …IPCC Full Report: