July 4, 2010
"UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, Nothing is going to get better. It's not."
-- Dr. Seuss, The Lorax
Emerging details of accidental radiation exposure at an Ontario nuclear power plant have triggered an order to investigate the possibility of similar incidents across the country, while raising doubts about safety at Canada's only privately owned operator…
In an internal newsletter obtained by The Globe and Mail, Bruce Power chief executive officer Duncan Hawthorne expresses concerns that cost overruns and delays could hinder the company's ability to win additional refurbishment projects from the Ontario government. The $4.25-billion price tag for upgrading the two units is $1.5-billion higher than the original estimate, and the project is more than a year behind schedule.
It is increasingly clear that the production of medical isotopes for nuclear medicine does not require nuclear reactors or uranium.
The Canadian Light Source thinks it can help solve the medical isotope shortage in Canada without using a nuclear reactor or weapons-grade uranium.
Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. says it estimates that the National Research Universal reactor will resume medical isotope production by the end of July. The NRU reactor in Chalk River, Ont., has been off-line for more than a year for repair of a radioactive water leak.
If we take seriously the protection of human health, we have to phase out coal- and nuclear-powered electricity.
The verdict: wind turbines are not perfect. They need to be carefully sited and allow for appropriate setbacks. But the current science -- from Ontario's top doctor -- suggests they do not threaten human health. Unlike coal, they are not destroying our climate and killing hundreds of Canadians every year. Unlike nuclear, they are not associated with cancer -- nor do they condemn the next 1,000 generations to the menace of radioactive waste.
Water scarcity has widespread implications for our nation. As a recent New York Times (Global Edition) article notes, water scarcity is increasingly a major constraint for the production of electricity. But what, in particular, does this mean for the nation's fleet of nuclear power plants?
Generating electricity with nuclear power is extremely water intensive, which is why nuclear plants are typically built on the shores of rivers, lakes and oceans. Many plants rely on submerged intake pipes to draw water -- hundreds of millions to a few billion gallons per day -- for use in cooling and condensing steam after it has turned the plants' turbines.
Impending deal could be worth billions for Canadian industry, but it has already become a source of concern in Pakistan
An imminent deal that would open the door for Canadian exports of uranium to India, could add to nuclear tensions in South Asia, some experts say.
The deal could be worth billions for Canadian industry and would formally end the mistrust that followed India’s nuclear test in 1974, when it became apparent that India had misused a Canadian research reactor to obtain weapons-grade plutonium.
Some experts on nuclear technology say the new deal could repeat history, however, with Canada unwittingly adding to the nuclear tensions in the region by easing India’s shortage of uranium.
Mayors for Peace proudly announced today that 4,037 member cities in 144 countries and regions have joined the campaign to eliminate nuclear weapons by 2020.
Nunavut is in danger of being on the receiving end of one of the biggest snow jobs in its history. The uranium industry has come to town, and the elected leaders of our public government may be willing to let bureaucrats in Nunavut and Ottawa decide whether or not its arrival is in our public interest.
Some other jurisdictions in Canada have concluded that it is not in their best interest. In British Columbia, Nova Scotia and the City of Ottawa, elected leaders and citizens have debated the wisdom of uranium mining and nuclear power. They have decided that the risks outweigh the rewards, and they have banned uranium exploration and mining in their jurisdictions. Similarly, the new government in Greenland banned uranium mining in the country as one of its first acts upon taking office last November.
Contrary to the messaging coming from the heads of land claims organizations and some senior government officials, Nunavummiut Makitagunarningit believes that a uranium industry in Nunavut would pose serious risks to the environment, to public health and safety, and to Inuit traditions and practices.
For whatever reasons, the elected leaders of our public government have not been willing or able to publicly acknowledge those risks - or examine whether Nunavut is ready to deal with them.
A hearing on the risk of a nuclear renaissance in the EU was held at the European Parliament on April 7th. It discussed three projects for new units at existing nuclear power plants that are under planning or construction in Europe. While one project was withdrawn, one was caught in legal entanglements and a third was facing massive cost overruns and delays.
A $1.1-billion wind farm development slated for Southwestern Ontario would be the largest of its type in the province and cement the region's reputation as a wind energy centre.
Next Era Energy, North America's largest energy company, is proposing to build three wind farm projects in Lambton and Huron counties. Combined, they'd dwarf other farms -- adding up to 300 wind turbines to the landscape and generating 490 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 144,000 homes.
On June 25, an incredible line-up of speakers assembled at Massey Hall, Toronto, all critiquing the G8/20. Vandana Shiva spoke about the nuclear deal with India.
Naomi Klein, Vandana Shiva, John Hilary, Pablo Solon, Maude Barlow, Clayton-Thomas Muller, Amy Goodman…
Rabble.tv posted them all – catch them here:
Also, catch Naomi Klein in a 15 min. video interview with Amy Goodman of Democracy Now: http://www.democracynow.org/2010/6/28/naomi_klein_the_real_crime_scene
After having stalled climate action in Canada over the last 4 years, the Harper government has successfully stalled it at the G8 level.
Greenpeace, Canada outlines how to deal with fossil fuel subsidies, carbon capture and storage subsidies, climate finance, and the climate gap