Wednesday, July 11, 2007

And I will see all of you on the barricades

Robert, we all know you have three sons with asthma... But please don't exclude "nuclear" from your speech and the equation... It's not oil and coal vs. nuclear... it's oil, coal and nuclear vs. solar, wind and industrial hemp!
~Remy C.

ROBERT F. KENNEDY JR. speech at Live Earth - New York event - July 7th

Now we've all heard the oil industry and the coal industry and their indentured servants in the political process telling us that global climate stability is a luxury that we can't afford. That we have to choose now between economic prosperity on the one hand and environmental protection on the other. And that is a false choice.

In 100% of the situations, good environmental policy is identical to good economic policy --- if we want to measure our economy, and this is how we ought to be measuring it, based upon how it produces jobs and the dignity of jobs over the generations, how it preserves the values of the assets of our community and how it averts the catastrophe of global warming.

If, on the other hand, we want to do what they've been urging us to do on Capitol Hill which is to treat the planet as if it were a business in liquidation, convert our natural resources to cash as quickly as possible, have a few years of pollution based prosperity, we can generate an instantaneous cash flow and the illusion of a prosperous economy. But our children are going to pay for our joyride with denuded landscapes, with poor health, with huge cleanup costs and with climate chaos which is going to amplify over time and that they will never be able to pay.

Environmental injury is deficit spending. It is a way of loading the costs of our generation's prosperity on to the backs of our children. Climate change is upon us. Its impacts are going to be catastrophic and we are causing it. The good news is, we have the scientific and technological capacity to avert its most catastrophic impacts. We only need the political will.

If we raise fuel economy standards in our automobiles by one mile per gallon --- we generate twice the amount of oil that is in the Arctic National Wildlife Refugee. If we raise fuel economy standards by 7.6 miles per gallon we yield more oil than we now import from the Persian Gulf. We can eliminate 100% of Persian Gulf oil.

Think about what that would do for our economy, for our foreign policy, for our global leadership, it would dramatically improve our balance of payments, reduce our national debt and make all of us more prosperous and more independent and spare us from wars in the Mid- East that are costing us, already, a trillion dollars and from entanglements with Mid-Eastern dictators who despise democracy and are hated by their own people.

Now you've heard today a lot of people say that there are many little things that you all can do today to avert climate change on your own. But I will tell you this, it is more important than buying compact flourescent light bulbs or than buying a fuel efficient automobile. The most important thing you can do is to get involved in the political process and get rid of all of these rotten politicians that we have in Washington D.C. --

Who are nothing more than corporate toadies for companies like Exxon and Southern Company, these villainous companies that consistently put their private financial interest ahead of American interest and ahead of the interest of all of humanity. This is treason and we need to start treating them now as traitors.

And they have their slick public relations firms and their phony think tanks in Washington D.C. and their crooked scientists who are lying to the American people day after day after day. And we have a press that has completely let down American Democracy. That's giving us Anna Nicole Smith and Paris Hilton instead of the issues that we need to understand to make rational decisions in a democracy - like global warming.

And so I am going to tell you this, that the next time you see John Stossel or Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity --- these flat- earthers, these corporate toadies, lying to you, lying to the American public, and telling you that global warming doesn't exist --- you send an email to their advertisers and tell them that you are not going to buy their products anymore.

And I want you to remember this, that we are not protecting the environment for the sake of the fishes and the birds, we are protecting it because nature is the infrastructure of our communities. And if we want to meet our obligation as a generation, as a civilization, as a nation, which is to create communities for our children that provide them with the same opportunities for dignity, and enrichment, and good health, and prosperity, and stability as the communities that our parents gave us, we've got to start by protecting our environmental infrastructure.

The air we breathe, the water we drink, the wildlife, the public lands, the things that connect us to our past to our history that provide context to our communities and that are the source, ultimately, of our values and our virtues and our character as a people and the future of our children.

And I will see all of you on the barricades.

Nuclear expansion is a pipe dream, says report

· Hope for new era of cheap, clean power is a 'myth'
· Building more stations would increase terror risk

John Vidal, environment editor
Wednesday July 4, 2007
The Guardian

A worldwide expansion of nuclear power has little chance of significantly reducing carbon emissions but will add dangerously to the proliferation of nuclear weapons-grade materials and the potential for nuclear terrorism, says a leading research group that has analysed the possible uptake of civil atomic power over the next 65 years.
The Oxford Research Group paper, funded by the Joseph Rowntree charitable trust, says that the worldwide nuclear "renaissance" planned by the industry to provide cheap, clean power is a myth. Although global electricity demand is expected to rise by 50% in the next 25 years, only 25 new nuclear reactors are currently being built, with 76 more planned and a further 162 proposed, many of which are unlikely to be built. This compares with 429 reactors in operation today, many of which are already near the end of their useful lives and need replacing soon.

For nuclear power to make any significant contribution to a reduction in global carbon emissions in the next two generations, the paper says, the industry would have to construct nearly 3,000 new reactors - or about one a week for 60 years.
"A civil nuclear construction and supply programme on this scale is a pipe dream, and completely unfeasible. The highest historic rate [of build] is 3.4 new reactors a year," says the report.

The paper - Too Hot to Handle? The Future of Civil Nuclear Power - comes as the UK government consults on a new generation of nuclear power stations and at a time of increased terrorist activity. It argues that worldwide stocks of high-grade uranium are expected to have run dangerously low within 25 years and that a significant increase in nuclear power beyond then will require a new generation of "breeder" reactor.

Though this will reduce the need for high-grade uranium, it says, it will also add immensely to the amount of weapons-grade plutonium being produced. "Even a small expansion in the use of nuclear power for electricity generation would have serious consequences for the spread of nuclear weapons to countries that do not now have them and for nuclear terrorism," it says.

The researchers say that nuclear proliferation is inevitable in the next decade. If all the reactors planned today are built, a further seven countries will have nuclear power. Nine more potentially volatile Middle Eastern countries, including Saudi Arabia and Syria, have expressed interest in civil nuclear power, says the paper.

In addition, future demand for electricity will come from the world's poorest countries, which are expected to add nearly 3.5 billion to their populations in the next 60 years. "If nuclear power is to play more than a marginal role in combating global warming, then nuclear power will have to be operated in countries like Bangladesh, Congo, Indonesia, Nigeria and Pakistan, which at present have no nuclear reactors", it says.

"According to the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency, within 30-40 years at least 30 countries are likely to have access to fissile materials from their civil nuclear power programmes that can be used for nuclear weapons and competent nuclear physicists and engineers who could design and fabricate them.

"Future breeder reactors will be fuelled with plutonium and only a small input of uranium. The plutonium will be of a type suitable for use in the most efficient nuclear weapons. The normal operation of these reactors will, as a matter of course, multiply the amount of weapons-usable plutonium available across the world.

"If the decision to go with nuclear power is taken, then the UK will implement a flawed and dangerously counter-productive energy policy.

"The question is whether in the 21st century the security risks associated with civil nuclear power can be managed, or not? Society has to decide whether or not the risks of proliferation and nuclear terrorism in a world with many nuclear power reactors are acceptable."


A scramble for uranium to feed the new generation of nuclear plants in China and Russia has led to a huge price increase: the commodity shot up 45% to $138 a pound in the past three months alone - as compared with $10.75 in early 2003, when atomic power was out of favour and nobody wanted to construct facilities. Nuclear is now seen as one way of meeting soaring energy demand while keeping greenhouse gas emissions low.

Entergy, all pretty in green!

Wow, what a relief, I can sleep so much better at night now... They don't credit the illustrator in this report... I'd like to find out who it is, just so I can ask him, or her, how it felt cashing in the check.
Of course, no mention in the text of the $300 million Entergy received from the Federal government last year to clean up their mess in New Orleans... or the billions of tax payers money spent managing their waste... maintaining security on their uranium supply chain, or the damage still imposed on Native American communities... As long as the drawings are cute... who cares? Right?
Gee, we're like so looking forward this bright green nuclear renaissance, with Al Gore and Robert Kennedy Jr. leading the way climbing over the Hollywood prop barricades... For after all... the enemy is oil and coal now... nuclear is our friend again... and Indian Point is so pretty in the moonlight... watching over the Hudson... the fish are happy, the water is clean... the radiation is invisible... the teamsters will watch after you... make the pain of cancer and still births go away... the lies, the deception, the rotten to the core corporate culture, the suits who don't care, just follow the letter of the law... here's our sustainability report... we're part of the community, we care... we're part of a conspiracy that has kept electron production out of the hands of the people, so we can stay fat on the hog, and spend lavishly on pretty PR campaigns to sway children and naive, gullible saps!
Entergy, wow... wow o wow... too cheap to meter... cause all the costs are hidden... delegated to the next generation... Sherwood's been away, a family emergency, he better get back to his blog soon, otherwise I may indeed write or say something there's no turning back from... we police each other... we both have a different set of "don't go there..." but this report... THIS report... really makes me want to scream... because it's so freakin' 1980 greenwash... it's like they don't even have a decent PR team... they are so clueless as to the "real" mood of the country... which is good, which is very good, because this thing will only go to make people angrier... angrier than they already are... at this plant, which persists, which everybody wants gone, which just hangs on and on... with their useless sirens and incompetent staff... a comedy of errors which I hope to God won't lead to something we can't walk away from... and according to this report... everything's just fine... you can sleep at night, we have it all under control, we're your friends... we just make lots and lots of $$$ for a sliver of billionaires... while for half as much, a tenth perhaps, we'd have PVs on every roof!
Wake up people... if Kennedy Jr. there is serious about this barricades stuff... well he better start putting his money where his mouth is and join us, because I really don't see him climb over anything without his handlers cell phoning him it's OK, the press is there, be ready for your media close up...

Hard copy of the report can be obtained from:
Publicly Available Reporting

Corporate Environment and Safety Contacts
Gary Serio, Vice President - Safety & EnvironmentTelephone:
504-576-4585 Facsimile: 504-576-2316

Patricia S. Hoppe, Director - Corporate Safety
Telephone: 504-576-5510 Facsimile: 504-576-2316
Brent Dorsey, Director - Corporate Environmental Programs
Telephone: 504-576-5084 Facsimile: 504-576-2316
Social Responsibility and Low-Income Initiative Contacts
Kay Kelley Arnold, Vice President - Public Affairs
Telephone: 501-377-3553 Facsimile: 501-377-3558
Patty Riddlebarger, Director - Corporate Social Responsibility
Telephone: 504-576-6116 Facsimile: 504-576-2190
Public and Media Inquiries
Arthur E.F.Wiese, Jr., Vice President - Corporate Communications
Telephone: 202-530-7325 Facsimile: 202-530-7350

Sunday, July 8, 2007

A Few New Books...

Quiet summer reading... George W. Hopley was director of market research at Enron North America... so the book flap for Nuclear Power Now reads: "an unbias look"... on page 185 "decades of safe performance"... shameless, unabashful peice of nuke propaganda trash. I have not seen the others up close, so I can't tell you yet... If anyone wants to volunteer writing a review... be my guest.