Do Something

National Nuclear Lobby Day, February 27, 2009

Dear Friends,
Beating back the $50 billion in nuclear/coal loan guarantees in the economic stimulus bill was just the first step-though it was a great one!
But the nuclear/coal industries are coming back again and will be looking for more taxpayer handouts throughout the coming year.
We need to keep the pressure on Congress, and keep educating Congress about the issues and our concerns-not only right before votes and Congressional actions, but all through this year. The very few lobbyists on our side can't keep up with the legion of Nuclear Energy Institute and utility lobbyists, nor their enormous campaign contributions.

That's where you come in.

We'll be sponsoring various grassroots activity opportunities for you to interact with your legislators this year. First up is a National Nuclear Lobby Day on Friday, February 27 inWashington.

This is designed mostly for those of you coming to town for the Carbon Free, Nuclear Free conference and/or the Power Shift events next week, plus those of you in Maryland, Virginia and other nearby locations.

If you are coming to DC and can be here on Friday, February 27, and are willing to meet with your legislator(s) or their staffs, please let us know by e-mailing us atnirsnet@nirs.org. We can set up appointments for you, provide you with talking points, and even accompany you on your visit if you'd like. If you need housing, we'll try to arrange that, but can't promise. Unfortunately, we don't have any travel funds for this event.

We hope to see you in DC next week!

Thanks for your help-let's keep our momentum going all year long!

Michael Mariotte
Executive Director
Nuclear Information and Resource Service
nirsnet@nirs.org
301-270-6477
 

 

Your help is urgently needed to prevent the Kentucky legislature from repealing the de facto moratorium on nuclear plant construction in the state

Senate Bill 13, introduced by Bill Leeper from Paducah, would endKentucky's ban on nuclear construction until a final repository for irradiated fuel is available. Instead, it would simply include a requirement that any new reactor have a storage plan. This seemingly minor change would pave the way for new reactor construction in Kentucky, because every reactor already is required by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to have a storage facility for its own fuel. But those facilities are on the reactor sites, and are not permanent repositories. The result would be new reactors, and radioactive waste piling up in Kentucky.

The Natural Resources and Energy Committee has already released the bill, without holding a hearing, and the bill is expected to be voted on in the full Senate Tuesday (February 10). A companion bill will be launched in the House.

Last year Leeper introduced similar legislation, which went nowhere. This year the legislation is on a fast track. Governor Beshear is pushing nuclear, which is Strategy 7 in his "7-Point Strategy for Energy Independence." Guiding him is the new head of the Energy and Environment Cabinet, Dr. Leonard Peters, whose previous position was head of the U.S. Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. The Laboratory is deep into research on "advanced" nuclear options.

Please contact your state senator and ask him/her to vote against SB 13. Also contact the House leadership to express opposition to the legislation. A hearing should be held before a companion bill comes to a vote in the House. People to contact in the House include Greg Stumbo, House Speaker; Robert Damron, Majority Floor Leader; Jeff Hoover, Minority Floor Leader, and Rep. Eddie Ballard, Chair of the House Tourism Development and Energy Committee. The easiest way to contact legislators is to leave a meassage with the KentuckyLegislative Research Commmission (LRC)'s message line: 1-800-372-7181. The person who answers the phone will tell you who your senator is if you do not know. The LRC web site has a complete list of the House leadership (http://www.lrc.ky.gov/house/hselead.htm and an e-mail form for writing to legislators (http://www.lrc.ky.gov/whoswho/email.htm .

For more information on Strategy 7, go to the web addresshttp://www.earthisland.org/ecoperspectives/kentucky.htm, which provides links to the governor's energy plan and to a critique of Strategy 7.

--Mary Davis, Director, EcoPerspectives, a project of Earth Island Institute

 

Riverkeeper urges you to attend the last public meeting on the environmental impacts of Indian Point before its relicensing hearing.

This is your final opportunity to voice your concerns to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) in a face-to-face meeting before it decides whether or not to issue Indian Point a license to operate for another 20 years.

The NRC is holding this public meeting to discuss the draft supplemental environmental impact statement (EIS) for license renewal of Indian Point's Nuclear Generating Units # 2 and 3. The deadline for filing written comments to the NRC is March 18, 2009.

The public is invited to participate by providing comments and asking questions throughout the meeting. Riverkeeper will be in attendance and will provide a handout with suggested questions and comments.

This is a critical juncture in our long, hard-fought, battle to retire Indian Point and we need your voice now more than ever! Riverkeeper opposes the license renewal of Indian Point, and is particularly concerned about the following environmental impacts:
• The slaughter of billions of fish, eggs and larvae every year that results from Indian Point's outdated cooling water intake system, which uses billions of gallons of Hudson River water every day to keep the plant operating.
• The killing of shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon when they are trapped against the cooling water intake screens. Shortnose sturgeon are listed as an endangered species under the federal Endangered Species Act.
• The continuing leak of radioactive water from the Indian Point 2 spent fuel pool into the groundwater and Hudson River, and the residual contamination caused by the plumes of contaminated groundwater that slowly leach toxic strontium-90 and cesium-137 into the Hudson River.
• The long term storage of thousands of tons of highly toxic nuclear waste on the banks of the Hudson River, currently housed in poorly maintained spent fuel pools and "dry casks" that are vulnerable to terrorist attack.

When: Thursday, February 12, 2009 (Two identical sessions)
First session: 1:30 pm 4:30 pm
Second session: 7:00 pm 10:00 pm

Where: Colonial Terrace, Grand Ballroom, 119 Oregon Road, Cortlandt Manor, NY

The DSEIS is available on the NRC's Website.

For more information on this issue visitriverkeeper.org/campaign.php/indianpoint_relicensing

To support Riverkeeper's ability to continue to fight this important battle please make a donation to our Indian Point legal fund today.

 

  

New Mexico Residents: Tell Reps to Vote "No" on HB 84

House Bill 84, sponsored by Patricia A. Lundstrom, creates a uranium legacy clean-up fund using revenues from the taxable value of new uranium extracted. While this bill sounds friendly, it is a pro-industry "greenwash" bill because:
1. It puts communities in the position of having to accept new uranium mining in order to get money to clean-up legacy waste;
2. It will not generate any revenue for clean-up for at least five years, the earliest that new mining could get permitted;
3. It will not generate nearly enough money to address the problem.
This bill not only affects communities in northwestern New Mexico but communities in Santa Fe County as well. The NM Bureau of Mines has identified Santa Fe County as one of the counties in New Mexico that could contain significant uranium deposits, and uranium mining has already occurred on La Bajada mesa.
WE URGE YOU TO ACT NOW!
Please call and e-mail the four key members of the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee, who are leaning towards supporting the Uranium Legacy Cleanup Act.
James Roger Madalena, Jemez Pueblo; 505-986-4417

Brian Egolf, Santa Fe County; 505-986-4211;
brian@brianegolf.com

Benjamin Rodefer, Corrales; 505-986-4211; benrodefer@gmail.com

Nick Salazar, Ohkay Owingeh, 505-986-4433
Tell them to oppose HB 84 for the reasons listed above and because there are
SEVERAL OTHER OPTIONS
for funding cleanup of abandoned uranium mines in New Mexico!
These Options Include:
• Economic Recovery Bills - U.S. Senate and House economic recovery bills contain nearly $1 billion in funds for BLM, Forest Service and National Park Service "construction projects" that must include "remediation of abandoned mine sites"
• OSM Abandoned Mine Lands Funds - The federal Office of Surface Mining should amend its rules to permit states like NM to use abandoned mine land funds to reclaim non-coal mines. This is a $3 million opportunity for NM now, with potentially another $20 million in the next 2 years.
• DOE Surplus Uranium Sales - SJM-15 urges Congress to (1) authorize DOE to use revenues from the sale of surplus government uranium for AUM reclamation, and (2) undo OSM's restrictions of the use of AML funds for uranium-mine cleanups.
• State Enforcement Authorities - The state could authorize enforcement actions against companies that abandoned mines before 1971. This would place clean-up requirements on the companies who created the wastes and abandoned them.
YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
Thank you for your support,
Douglas Meiklejohn, Executive Director
New Mexico Environmental Law Center
nmelc@nmelc.org
http://www.nmelc.org

 Send a Comment to the US NRC 

February 2, 2009
Dear Friend of NIRS,
If you are like us at NIRS, the only thing you have confidence about radioactive waste is that we need to STOP MAKING IT! Then we need to do everything we can to prevent its release into the cycles of Earth's air, water and soil. Building NEW nuclear power reactors that will make even more radioactive waste is like running off a cliff. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is seeking our comments on its plan to "update" a key rule on radioactive waste known as the "Waste Confidence Decision." Your comments are needed! Click here to send an e-mail to the NRC, or read on to make your own comment.

The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission has, for the last 40+ years, licensed the production of the most radioactive waste in the USA--with no real solution. When it comes to the high-level radioactive waste (a category in which NRC includes so-called "spent" or irradiated fuel rods and also the left-overs from the reprocessing of those rods), NRC has been resting its approval of continuous production of this waste on something it calls the "waste confidence decision." Now NRC is proposing to change the wording of this self-fulfilling lack of a real waste solution that is used to "allow" more waste to be made, minute by minute, every time we "flip the switch." (to see the full Federal Register Notice see: http://frwebgate5.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/PDFgate.cgi?WAISdocID=320270141...)

Originated in 1984, the "decision" said that NRC was "confident" that making irradiated fuel was not a problem because, although no off-site disposal capacity was available, NRC was comfortable affirming that the waste could remain on the site where it was generated for the interim period--projected at that time to be at most 30 years after the expiration of the waste generation license. In 1984 NRC affirmed that there would be "at least one' mined geologic repository ready between 2007--2009. (This IS now 2009; there is no repository, therefore NRC is revisiting its "decision.")

Now NRC wants to change the rule's language to:

Finding 2: The Commission finds reasonable assurance that sufficient
mined geologic repository capacity can reasonably be expected to be available
within 50-60 years beyond the licensed life for operation (which may include
the term of a revised or renewed license) of any reactor to dispose of the
commercial high-level radioactive waste and spent fuel originating in such
reactor and generated up to that time.

Finding 4: The Commission finds reasonable assurance that, if necessary,
spent fuel generated in any reactor can be stored safely without significant
environmental impacts for at least 60 years beyond the licensed life for
operation (which may include the term of a revised or renewed license) of that
reactor in a combination of storage in its spent fuel storage basin and either
onsite or offsite independent spent fuel storage installations.

Does this make you more confident? We don't think so. In fact, we feel downright anxious about the piles of waste sitting at nuclear power sites today -- and see the addition of new nuclear reactors to the US fleet when there is still no "solution" to the waste problem as the reason to declare no confidence!

Click this link to send a short comment to the US NRC
If you prefer to send your own comments -- send them to: rulemaking.comments@nrc.gov
Include reference to the Federal Register Notice: 73 FR 197-- 10/09/2008 Docket ID-2008-0482 and Docket ID-2008-0404

Comment deadline is February 6, 2009

Questions for NIRS? Contact: Diane D'Arrigo, Director Radioactive Waste Project --dianed@nirs.org or 301-270-6477

 

  

Call Your Senator and Get Nuke Loan Guarantees Out of the Stimulus Package 

January 29, 2009
The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee late on the night of January 27 snuck in a provision to President Obama's economic stimulus package that would allow as much as $50 BILLION of your dollars to be used as loan guarantees for construction of new nuclear reactors. This would be on top of the $18.5 Billion taxpayer dollars already authorized by Congress during the Bush administration.
Please CALL your Senators today (202-224-3121) AND send them an e-mail by clicking here.
These loan guarantees would mean more nuclear reactors and more radioactive waste piling up in communities across our country. They would also mean less money for safer, cheaper and cleaner energy alternatives like solar and wind power.
The provision is vaguely worded. It would authorize $50 Billion in new loan guarantees for "eligible technologies." These technologies include nuclear, "clean coal," renewable energy sources and electric transmission. But the stimulus package is intended to create new jobs and economic
activity over the next two years. Not only should new nuclear reactors and the false concept of "clean coal" be excluded from taxpayer support, but the reality is that neither technology is ready to produce any jobs within the next two years.
The Department of Energy apparently would have to decide how to allocate this $50 Billion. If it all went to safe, cost-effective renewable energy sources,that would be one thing. Unfortunately, the provision's backers, like Sens. Robert Bennett (R-UT) and Thomas Carper (D-DE), are clear that their intent is that it would go for new nuclear reactor construction. Yet the Congressional Budget Office predicts a 50% default rate by nuclear utilities using this program! This is simply a nuclear bailout waiting to happen, and we can't afford it.
But it's not too late. You can help stop this nonsense. The full Senate will vote on the stimulus package the week of February 2. Please CALL your Senators now (Senate Switchboard: 202-224-3121) and tell them to stop all loan guarantees for new nuclear reactors. AND, please send an e-mail to your Senators with the same message by clicking here.
We expect a lot more activity on these issues over the next few days and weeks, and we will keep you alerted to new developments. And NIRS, Physicians for Social Responsibility and other groups are calling for a National Lobby Day on nuclear power for February 27, 2009, which falls right between the Carbon-Free, Nuclear-Free conference and the huge Power Shift conference. If you are coming to Washington for either of those and are willing to meet with your Congressmembers, let us know--we can set up meetings for you and assist in other ways too. We'll be sending more information on the National Lobby Day soon.
Thanks for all you do,
Michael Mariotte
Executive Director
Nuclear Information and Resource Service
nirsnet@nirs.org
www.nirs.org

Say No to Nuke Plant in Levy County

Many of us in Gainesville and Alachua County live within a 50-mile radius of the site where Progress Energy intends to construct a massive nuclear power station. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has designated this 50-mile radius as the "impact area" for a nuclear plant, which grants legal standing to all persons residing within this area who choose to intervene in the permitting process and challenge the deficiencies in the nuclear plant application (Email me for a copy of the 50-mile radius map in .pdf format). Organizations with members residing within the 50-mile radius also have legal standing.

The Alachua County Green Party has decided to take action, as referenced in the last paragraph of this Resolution, which is "to join with the Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) in filing an intervention with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in the permitting process for the Progress Energy nuclear power facility in Levy County, challenging with a formal contention one or more elements in the application submitted by Progress Energy, with said intervention to be filed by the deadline of February 8, 2009 which is imposed by NRC rules."

The Green Party of Florida is currently considering a proposal to intervene in the Progress Energy application process, and if the GPF adopts the proposal (which is likely), Alachua County will have the option of joining with the state party in filing one intervention.

The filing of the intervention with the NRC will be handled by an attorney with the NIRS (Nuclear Information and Resource Service), and NIRS is assisting a number of co-intervenors in this action. Anyone wishing to assist with the work of researching and preparing our intervention is encouraged to get involved. We especially need volunteers with expertise in alternative energy, since our contention will be focused on the alternatives to nuclear portion of the application. Others will be filing contentions that address water issues, economic issues and other elements of the application, and they may be able to use assistance as well.

Those who cannot assist with the intervention but who wish to be listed as a party may do so, as long as they can prove residence within the 50-mile radius and membership in an organization filing an intervention. Registered Green Party voters, for example, can become a party to this intervention simply by signing an affidavit. Anyone who wishes to join this action and is not currently registered as a Green Party voter can do so by filling out a voter registration form and turning it in to the Supervisor of Elections office. They will provide proof of party affiliation at that time, in case there is a delay in receiving the voter registration by mail. Only one individual with standing is needed to file our intervention, but everyone is welcome.

For more information, contact:

Michael Canney
386-418-3791
alachuagreen@gmail.com  

 

Call EPA TODAY to Withdraw Bush Administration Last Minute Weakening of Radiation Standards

January 21, 2009
Just before leaving office, the Bush Administration approved new Protective Action Guides (PAGs) for radiation releases that dramatically weaken public protections. In particular, the new PAGs would permit radioactivity in drinking water hundreds to millions of times higher than longstanding EPA standards.

The PAGs weren't able to published in the Federal Register before Inauguration, but unless the new Obama Administration pulls them
back immediately, they could be published in the next few days.

The Order issued by Rahm Emanuel Tuesday to suspend all rulemaking activities until the new Administration can review them might be interpreted by Bush holdovers at EPA as strictly only covering formal rulemaking. In order to avoid rulemaking legal requirements, the Bush Administration issued these new standards as Protective Action Guides instead. So it is critical to get EPA to immediately pull the PAGs back from the Federal Register.

Please NOW call the EPA Administrator's office at 202-564-4700 and leave a message, asking that the Radiation Protective Action Guides be withdrawn immediately from publication in the Federal Register.

For more information, see http://www.committeetobridgethegap.org/pdf/radiation012109.pdf

Call White House Jan 21--Demand Clean Energy Policy

January 14, 2009

Dear Friend, From continued generation of radioactive waste to 26 new atomic reactor applications to the horrific coal ash spill in Tennessee, the signs are clear: it's time for decisive action on a renewable energy economy for America. NIRS has recently teamed up with CLEAN - a collaborative movement of state and local organizations and individuals who will force and support policy makers at all levels of government to implement new energy policies. CLEAN has launched a campaign to let President-elect Obama know that there is strong grassroots support for bold action on our clean energy future.
The next step in the campaign is a national call-in day to the White House on Wednesday, January 21st in order to make our voices heard on Obama's first day in office. We want to make it known that the American people are saying YES to renewables, YES to energy efficiency, NO to carbon capture and sequestration, and NO to nuclear power.
It is all the more important to contact the Obama administration considering that just yesterday, Obama's choice for energy secretary, Dr. Stephen Chu, testified before Congress in favor of the $18.5 billion loan guarantee program for new nuclear reactors and for federal funding of reprocessing research. Let Obama know those kind of positions are not what our nation needs.
It will take people calling from all across the country and all walks of life to make an impact. We need your voice, too! Join us! Please click here to make your pledge to call the White House on Wednesday, January 21st. You'll also find call-in information and a brief sample script you can use. It will only take a few minutes to take part in this national movement to ensure a clean energy future for America!
Thanks for all you do.
Michael Mariotte
Executive Director
Nuclear Information and Resource Service
nirsnet@nirs.org

 

Bonnie Raitt No Nukes Benefit Concert, Columbia,SC, Mar. 21

We wanted to let you know that Bonnie Raitt has been so wonderfully kind to schedule a benefit concert in Columbia, South Carolina on March 21 in memory of a beloved friend and anti-nuclear activist Becky Hardee. The concert is to benefit the work of the South Carolina Chapter of the Sierra Club, Friends of the Earth, Nuclear Information & Resource Service and Nuclear Watch South. We are hopeful that the concert will draw attention to the proposed new reactors here, the promise of conservation & efficiency & renewables, as well as the threat of reprocessing at the Savannah River Site. If you want to attend be sure to buy tickets as soon as they go on sale as it looks like her southern tour is selling out fast. (See http://www.guacfund.org/ and Bonnie's website for concert & tour info: http://www.bonnieraitt.com/ontour.php) Thanks for passing this on to friends in the region who might be interested in what will prove to be a fun event.

 

SUPPORT ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND RENEWABLE ENERGY
BUT NOT NUCLEAR POWER AND FOSSIL FUELS
IN STIMULUS LEGISLATION

Below is a group letter to be sent to the leadership of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives as well as the Members of the appropriations committees in both
branches of Congress.

The letter urges support for "shovel-ready" energy efficiency and
renewable energy projects as part of the anticipated "stimulus bill"
and also opposes providing stimulus funds for either nuclear power or
fossil fuel programs.

Your organizational or individual sign-on is invited.

SIGN-ON DEADLINE: TUESDAY, JANUARY 6, 8:00 pm (eastern time)

ORGANIZATIONAL SIGN-ONS: If you would like to add the name of your organization or business to this statement, please provide:

Your Name + Title
Organization/Business Name
City, State

INDIVIDUAL SIGN-ONS: If you would like to sign this letter as an individual, please
clearly state that you are signing as an individual and not an organization and
provide:

Your Name
City, State

If you wish to include your organizational affiliation "for
identification purposes only," please include that as well.

January 7, 2009

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer
House Minority Leader John Boehner

Dear ...

We, the undersigned sustainable energy and environmental organizations, businesses, and individual advocates, are writing to urge that you support provisions in the proposed stimulus bill that will promote sustainable energy technologies and create "green jobs."

More specifically, funding should be targeted at those energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that can be brought on line quickly, will maximize job creation, will curb greenhouse gases and energy imports, and have the least adverse social and environmental impacts.

Nuclear power and fossil fuel technologies should not be included among those supported by the stimulus bill. These technologies cannot be brought on line quickly, entail unacceptable environmental hazards, and produce far fewer jobs per dollar invested.

Rather, emphasis should be given to "shovel-ready" projects that can be deployed in the very near term (i.e., preferably within 6-24 months) either to reduce wasteful energy use or to produce renewable energy as well as create jobs. Longer-term investments in sustainable energy research and development merit federal support but should be addressed in the regular annual appropriations bills rather than in this stimulus legislation.

The most attractive investments in terms of cost-effectiveness, jobs creation, carbon-reduction, and time-frame may well be those designed to reduce energy use in residential, commercial, public and other buildings. Accordingly, a high priority should be funding aimed at the permanent weatherization of older buildings and the replacement energy-inefficient lighting, appliances, and HVAC systems. Likewise, investments in advanced meter and demand-response programs are warranted.

In the transportation sector, emphasis should be given to lower-carbon options such as expansion of bike trails and pedestrian walkways, acquisition of more energy-efficient government vehicles including municipal buses, construction or expansion of light-rail and other mass transit systems, and repair of existing roads, tunnels, and bridges. However, funding the construction of new roads would tend - in many, if not most, instances - to encourage increased fuel use and oil imports and result in greater greenhouse gas emissions. Therefore, such proposals should be closely scrutinized and probably given very low priority.

Investments in renewable energy projects should support the broad range of technologies (i.e., wind, water, solar, geothermal, biomass/biofuels) with funding directed at smaller, distributed, and off-grid systems as well as larger, grid-connected, central station projects. Investments to upgrade existing transmission systems or create new "intelligent" ones to bring renewable electricity from remote locations to urban areas may also be justified. However, priority should be given to those projects and technologies that can be brought on line most quickly, have the lowest environmental or social impacts, create the largest number of jobs, are most cost-effective, and produce the most energy.

We appreciate your consideration of these views.

Sincerely,


cc. Members, Senate Committee on Appropriations
Members, House Committee on Appropriations

 

  

Let the Obama Administration Know What You Think

NIRS set up a meeting for DC-based safe energy groups and the Obama energy transition team that was held on Monday, December 15. The role of the transition team is to learn about the issues the new administration will face, and especially those issues that the outgoing Bush administration is not likely to tell them about or is likely to distort.

Joining NIRS in the meeting were representatives from Physicans for Social Responsibility, Natural Resources Defense Council, Environment America, Taxpayers for Common Sense, Beyond Nuclear, and Alliance for Nuclear Accountability. Representatives from Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, Friends of the Earth and Public Citizen were unable to attend for various reasons.

We talked to six transition team leaders about a variety of issues Obama will face early in his administration, including loan guarantees for new reactors; Yucca Mountain, reprocessing and the GNEP program, the disarray in the NRC's reactor licensing process and nuclear power and climate issues, among others.

The meeting went well, the transition team was interested in everything we had to say and took copious notes, and hopefully we've opened the door for future meaningful communication with the Obama administration.

WHAT YOU CAN DO: let the Obama administration know what you think about these and other important issues. Go to change.gov (or use this link: http://change.gov/agenda/energy_and_environment_agenda /) and tell them your energy and environmental priorities. Many of you have written long, thoughtful comments on our various online petitions. Now go straight to the administration and leave your comments there too. So far, not a lot of people have commented on nuclear-related issues--let's change that now!

 

NRC announces opportunity to participate in hearing on new reactor application for Levy County site

Dec 09, 2008

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission today announced the opportunity to participate in the hearing on a Combined License (COL) application for two new reactors at the Levy County site near Crystal River, Fla.  Progress Energy submitted the application and associated information on July 30. The application, minus proprietary or security-related details, is available on the NRC Web site at: http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/new-reactors/col/levy.html.

A petition to intervene must be electronically submitted in a timely manner to the NRC's Electronic Information Exchange (EIE) system. The petition to intervene must be filed in accordance with the NRC's E- Filing Rule that appeared in the Federal Register on Aug. 28, 2007. Additional guidance and instructions regarding electronic submissions to the NRC EIE system is available on the NRC web pages at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html.

Tell Warren Buffett to Close UniStar Nuclear!

December 8, 2008
A new campaign has formed to take on UniStar Nuclear and its plans to build giant new atomic reactors in New York, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Missouri. UniStar Nuclear is half-owned by Constellation Energy and half by Electricite de France. It was created solely to build new reactors in the U.S. These reactors, called the EPR, are designed by the French company Areva and are 1600 Megawatts each, or nearly twice the size of the current average U.S. reactor. It might be worth noting that both Electricite de France and Areva are essentially arms of the French government, which owns more than 80% of each company.

For more information and to sign the petition, please visit: http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5502/t/2834/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=150

 

Sign on To Physicians for Social REsponsibility Letter to President-Elect Obama

Dear President-Elect Obama: We are writing to urge you to eliminate both the Department of Energy's (DOE) Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP), which has focused on restarting nuclear waste reprocessing in the United States, and the reprocessing research program in the Advanced Fuel Cycle Initiative (AFCI). Reprocessing would cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars, undermine U.S. nonproliferation policy, pollute the environment, and threaten public health. Moreover, reprocessing worsens the nuclear waste problem, rather than solves it. Instead, your administration should ensure that spent fuel at commercial reactor sites is better protected to make it less vulnerable to attack...

To view and sign the complete letter, please contact Michele Boyd: mboyd@PSR.org

  

Sign On to Keep Nuclear Power out of the Kyoto Protocol 

Back in 2000, the nuclear power industry tried to obtain credits under the carbon trading schemes set up by the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Joint Implementation (JI) provisions.

NIRS and their partners WISE (World Information Service on Energy), working with many environmental groups from across the world, along with a little help from Al Gore, who seemingly had just been elected President of the United States, beat back the industry at the Kyoto Protocol's COP6 meeting in The Hague in November 2000.  Now the nuclear industry is trying again--at the upcoming climate negotiations in Poznan, Poland, the industry is again seeking to become eligible for lucrative carbon trading credits. And again, NIRS, WISE and the world's environmental and clean energy movements are gearing up to stop them.

YOU CAN HELP! The statement at the link below is being distributed to the delegates at the Poznan climate meeting. Please join us and sign your organization on by sending your name, organization, city, state and country if outside the U.S. to nirsnet@nirs.org by noon, Eastern time, on Sunday, December 7, 2008.

http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5502/t/2834/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=182

  

Comment on Obama's alternate energy initiatives

We'd like to encourage everyone to watch the 3+ minute video of Obama's address today. Here's what it's about: "The President-elect has directed the Transition's economic team to develop the details of a plan for a two-year, nationwide effort to strengthen our economy. It will center around jobs rebuilding crumbling roads and bridges, modernizing schools, and making America a leader in alternative energy."  Here's the link to the speech: http://www.change.gov/page/s/economy

Then use the comment form on that page to stress the point that alternative energy initiatives must not include nuclear!

NRC MEETING WITH PUBLIC DEC. 4 ON ENVIRONMENTAL SCOPING FOR LEVY COUNTY NEW REACTOR APPLICATION

Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff will hold public meetings Thursday, Dec. 4, in Crystal River, Fla., to discuss the environmental issues the agency should consider in reviewing a Combined License (COL) application for two new reactors proposed for the Levy County site near Crystal River.

The NRC will meet with the public from 1 - 4 p.m. and 6 - 9 p.m. at the Florida National Guard Armory, 8551 W. Venable St. in Crystal River. The application's environmental report is available on the agency's Web site at: http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/new-reactors/col/levy.html. Copies of the report are also available at the Citrus County Coastal Region Library, 8619 W. Crystal St. in Crystal River; the Bronson Public Library at 600 Gilbert St. in Bronson, Fla.; and the Dunnellon Branch Library at 20351 Robinson Rd. in Dunnellon, Fla.

NRC staff will be available for informal discussions with members of the public during "open house" sessions from noon - 1 p.m. and 5 - 6 p.m. No formal comments on the environmental review will be accepted during these open houses.

Progress Energy submitted the application July 30 to build and operate two AP1000 reactors at the Levy County site. The AP1000 is a Westinghouse-designed 1,100 MWe pressurized-water reactor the NRC certified in 2006. Westinghouse submitted an application in May 2007 to amend the certified design. The amendment application (minus proprietary or security-related details) is available on the NRC Web site at: http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/new-reactors/design-cert/amended-ap1000.html.

Those wishing to register in advance to present their comments at the meeting should contact Douglas Bruner or Jessie M. Muir by telephone at 800-368-5642, x2730 or x0491 respectively, or via e-mail at Levy.COLEIS@nrc.gov by Nov. 26. Those wishing to speak may also register at each meeting no later than 12:45 p.m. and 5:45 p.m., respectively. Individual comments may be limited by the time available and the number of people wishing to speak.

NRC staff will also consider written comments on the scoping process. Comments should be submitted no later than Dec. 23, either by mail to the Chief, Rules and Directives Branch, Division of Administrative Services, Office of Administration, Mailstop T-6D59, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, via e- mail at Levy.COLEIS@nrc.gov, or hand-delivered to the NRC at 11545 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Md., between 7:30 a.m. and 4:15 p.m. on Federal workdays.

###

News releases are available through a free listserv subscription at the following Web address: http://www.nrc.gov/public-involve/listserver.html.  The NRC homepage at www.nrc.gov also offers a SUBSCRIBE link. E-mail notifications are sent to subscribers when news releases are posted to NRC's Web site.

 

Notice from Defenders of the Black Hills, Rapid City, SD

The South Dakota Board of Minerals and Environment will be conducting an Adversarial Hearing in Pierre, SD, on a permit application from Powertech (USA) Inc. to drill 30 uranium exploratory wells in the southern Black Hills. The wells are from 300-800 feet deep. Powertech already has 4,160 uranium exploratory wells in the same area.
Twenty-seven (27) individuals and three organizations sent letters of objection to granting the permit triggering the adversarial hearing. Members of Defenders of the Black Hills are among the objectors, and some of those sending in letters of objection will be in attendance.
The hearing will begin at 10:30 a.m. CST on Wednesday, Nov. 19th, at the Matthew Environmental Education and Training Center, Joe Foss Building, 523 East Capitol Avenue, Pierre, SD.
For more information about the hearing, contact Roberta Fivecoate, Minerals and Mining Program at (605) 773-4201.

 

Tri-Cities to have GNEP hearing

Tri-City residents will get something Monday that some Seattle and
Portland residents are clamoring for -- a public hearing on the Global
Nuclear Energy Partnership.

Last month the Department of Energy released a new draft environmental
study on the partnership that favored reprocessing fuel that has been used
in nuclear power plants rather than using it only once.

DOE has scheduled 13 public hearings on the study around the country,
but just two in the Northwest. One is at 7 p.m. Monday in the Pasco Red Lion
Hotel, 2525 N. 20th Ave. and the other is in Hood River, Ore., the next
evening at the Hood River Inn, 1108 E. Marina Way.

The state of Oregon has requested that another meeting be added in
Portland. And Heart of America Northwest has called for more meetings in
Seattle and Spokane.

But with no additional meetings planned, opponents of reprocessing
nuclear waste are offering free rides from Portland to the Hood River
meeting on a biodiesel bus.

The draft study, or programmatic environmental impact statement,
looked at alternatives to the practice of using nuclear fuel once and then
sending it to a deep geological repository, such as Yucca Mountain, Nev.

The study did not pick one option as preferred, saying only that DOE
preferred to close the fuel cycle, or reuse fuel.

The study also did not narrow sites for researching or reprocessing
fuel, but did include information about areas, including Hanford, that might
be appropriate for nuclear projects.

The study looks at ways to support the expansion of nuclear energy
production, while reducing the risks of nuclear proliferation and the
impacts of disposing of nuclear fuel in geologic repositories.

  

For California Residents: Letter to CA Energy Commission

California Energy Commission
Media and Public Communications Office
1516 Ninth Street, MS-29
Sacramento, CA 95814-5512

To the Commission:

As a California resident I support the California Energy Commission's (CEC) recommendation to "evaluate the long-term implications associated with the continuing accumulation of spent fuel at California's operating [nuclear power] plants, including a case-by-case evaluation of public safety and ratepayer costs of on-site interim storage of spent fuel versus transporting spent fuel offsite for interim storage."

It is time for California to address how many additional tons of high-level radioactive waste we will be allowed to be stored on our state's earthquake active coastal zones and what legacy this means for our children.

The CEC's Report stated that given, "the high level of uncertainty surrounding the federal waste disposal program, California's utilities will likely be forced to retain spent fuel in storage facilities at currently operating reactor sites for an indefinite period of time." [1] As a resultof the CEC's concerns, I further support an investigation into phasing out the production and limiting the storage of high-level radioactive waste at California's operating nuclear plants by the end of current license terms.

The radioactive waste from the daily operation of Diablo Canyon and San Onofre may place our state at risk for generations, if not forever. These risks are heightened by the recent terrorist attacks in: New York, Madrid, London, Jordan and a possible thwarted attack at a nuclear plant in Sydney, Australia in November 2005.

The CEC and California residents are not alone in concerns regarding the increasing stockpiles of high-level radioactive waste on our nation's coasts and waterways. My support of the CEC recommendation is based on increasing doubts that a permanent disposal facility for high-level radioactive waste at California's operating nuclear plants will ever be available. These doubts have been substaniated by nuclear experts, federal and state oversight agencies and both Republican and Democratic Senators from Nevada and Utah.

· Senator Bennett (R-Utah)declared "I remain committed to fight against any effort to bring spent nuclear fuel to Utah, and firmly believe that this waste should be stored where it currently is until we work out the economics and technology to reprocess it." [2]

· Senator Reid (D-Nevada) said he would no longer stand in the way of Utah lawmakers who are trying to block a nuclear waste complex on the Goshute Indian reservation in their state by having the nearby area designated government-protected wilderness. Reid's announcement came several weeks after Sen. Robert Bennett, R-Utah, pledged in a Senate speech that he was withdrawing his support for the nuclear waste repository the Department of Energy wants to build at Yucca Mountain in Nevada.[3]

· Former NRC Commissioner and Yucca consultant, Victor Gilinsky stated that "Despite enormous expenditure and heavy political backing, the project is in deep trouble. It is caught up in a mess of technical, legal, and managerial problems from which I don't think it is going to extract itself, and as a consequence, I don't think it is ever going to open, not at least if it gets any kind of a fair review. [4]

· Executive Director of the Nevada Office of Nuclear Project, Robert Loux, "I think from our perspective it's safe to say that we believe the Yucca Mountain project is in an advanced state of disintegration, for a whole variety of reasons, and it has a number of obstacles it has to overcome before it can actually go forward, some of which we believe are completely unresolvable for the most part. [5]

Further evidence confirming the public's concern that our state may become one a permanent high-level radioactive waste storage site in perpetuity can be found in the Congressional vote to cut funding for the nation's only proposed permanent site in November 2005. The final figure was also less than the House and the Senate passed during earlier debates. More delays in the oft-delayed project caused lawmakers to curb Yucca Mountain's budget. [6]

The economic risks to California posed by the storage of this highly radioactive fuel should be taken into consideration when performing a cost/benefit study analyzing replacement generation for the Diablo Canyon and San Onofre Nuclear Plants. Reactor communities should be first in line for new clean electric generation facilities, which would provide jobs, taxes, infrastructure and financial benefits that will be lost when this dangerously sited nuclear plant ceases operation.

California's Governor and state legislators should work with the CEC, the CPUC, the CCC, SCE and PG&E to plan for future energy needs and while decreasing our state's risks from a radioactive release due to an act of terrorism, malice or insanity, earthquake or age-related accident.

[1] CEC IEPR September 2005, Nuclear Chapter

[2] http://www.harktheherald.com/modules.php?op=modload&frame=News&file=arti...

[3] http://www.reviewjournal.com/lvrj_home/2005/Nov-09-Wed-2005/news/4219215...

[4] 2005 IEPR pages 173-179

[5] ibid. Pages 63-84

[6] http://www.kansas.com/mld/kansas/news/breaking_news/13166660.htm (c) 2005 AP Wire and wire service sources. All Rights Reserved.

To sign this letter, and/or change your details, please follow this link...
http://a4nr.org/actionLetters/11.17.2005-cecltr/ActionLetter_confirmForm?subid=00159Hskpw

 

Join Coalition Effort to Shut Down One of the Riskiest Nuclear Plants on the Great Lakes

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) is considering a request from nuclear utility Ontario Power Generation to refurbish four of six old reactors at its Pickering nuclear power plant, less than 20 miles east of Toronto, located on the Lake Ontario shore. If refurbished, the four reactors' operating licenses would be extended from 2014 to 2060.

These reactors share safety systems in common, meaning a domino effect of meltdowns is possible. These CANDU reactors also share the Chernobyl RBMK's fatal flaw -- "positive void coefficient" -- which risks runaway reactions and explosions.

Accidents at Pickering would impact the United States, just 35 miles downwind and downstream across Lake Ontario. Pickering's larges-cale tritium releases into Lake Ontario already impact drinking water supplies downstream, even in the U.S.

Please sign your group onto our coalition comments to CNSC, calling for Pickering's shutdown. Read the group letter at the top of Beyond Nuclear's homepage, www.beyondnuclear.org. Sign on by noon Eastern time next Monday, Nov. 10th by emailing me at kevin@beyondnuclear.org with your name, title if any, group name, street/city/state/zip, phone and email. Individuals are also welcome to sign, in addition to groups. Please spread the word. Thanks!

---Kevin Kamps, Beyond Nuclear, cell 240-462-3216

 

Demand that huge giveaways of your electric bill money be stopped immediately

Contact your Public Utility Commission (PUC) and Elected Officials:

http://www.fcc.gov/wcb/iatd/state_puc.html

http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml

  

 

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