Local residents and environmental groups have reacted angrily to the announcement that prosecutors have decided to drop the charges for responsibility for the crisis at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant. As Japan nears the third anniversary of the March 11 earthquake that crippled the plant, no-one has been held accountable for the second-worst nuclear accident in history, despite the independent investigative committee set up by the government concluding in July 2012 that the accident was “man-made disaster” caused by shortcomings in Japanese corporate culture.
To mark the anniversary groups around the UK are organising protests and events. They would very much appreciate your presence, to show that we haven't forgotten those affected by this ongoing disaster.
London: Japanese Against Nuclear;
10th March Meeting 7-9pm: Fukushima, 3 years on. Committee room 10, House of Commons.
11th March Vigil 6-8pm: outside the Japanese Embassy, 101 Piccadilly
15th March, Demo 12.30-3pm: Meet at Hyde Park Corner, followed by rally at Old Palace Yard.
Please check http://januk.org/event.html for more info.
Sunday 9th March 2.30pm, The Arc 27 Broad Street, Bristol, BS1 2HG
Nuclear waste Barrel meet up with any props you might have rehearsal ideas for Fukushima anniversary 11 March
Tuesday 11th March Fukushima day
meet at the Arc 27 Broad Street, 3.45pm to pick up barrels
Bring your props/ banners statements. We will be leafleting outside the council house from 4.30pm till 6.30pm
STAND against Oldbury
Tuesday 11th March: Meet on the banks of river Severn at Lydney Harbour, opposite to Berkeley and Oldbury, at 3.30pm.
Collect together messages written to the people of Fukushima - to be later translated into Japanese and sent to the Mayor of Fukushima.
Speeches from Mollie Scott Cato, Green Party candidate for South West and Steve Parry Hearne, Labour candidate for Forest of Dean, plus a message from Jonathon Porritt.
Then, throw flowers into the river to Japanese music.
Tuesday 11th March, 8-9am, meet on the bridge, then leafletting Cemaes Bay where Wylfa lies.
Vigil at Heysham nuclear power plant:
Saturday 8th March
10am Meet at the Quaker Meeting House, Lancaster LA1 1TX for a briefing.
12 noon Vigil
For more info phone Mo Kelly, Lancaster Quakers at 01524 389911
The recent announcement that a ‘strike price’ has been agreed between the government and EDF Energy does not mean that we have lost the battle to stop Hinkley C.
Far from it.
It’s not just the environmental community that thinks the Hinkley deal stinks. Investment bank, Liberium Capital recently published a report entitled, ‘Flabbergasted – The Hinkley Point Contract’ and spelt out exactly what a stitch-up it will be for the British public in financial terms. You can read the full report here: http://www.liberumcapital.com/pdf/ULkWtp00.pdf
AREVA, the French state-owned majority nuclear giant, has called a halt to the grindingly slow construction of the Olkiluoto EPR reactor in Finland. The project, which is already 5 years late and €7,508,209,000 over budget, has been plagued with problems not least of all the as yet unresolved control and instrumentation problems.
The Finnish operators TVO and AREVA are locked in litigation which is claimed by Areva to be one of the biggest conflicts in the history of the construction industry.
Olkiluoto 3 is an EPR project built in Finland by Areva since 2005. It was originally supposed to be ready in 2009 (4 years lead time) and cost 3 billion euro while the current estimates are 8.5 billion euro and 13-15 years lead time. TVO is suing Areva for €1.8 bn extra costs while Areva is suing TVO for €2.7 bn. Workers contracts are not being renewed, with no explanation offered, we can only assume it is being mothballed.
Under current EU law, the deal between the government and EDF Energy also breaks European competition law. This is because the nuclear energy sector is being given greater state support than competing energy companies in the renewables sector.
Energy Fair, a group of anti-nuclear experts has submitted a formal complaint to the Directorate General for Competition of the European Commission regarding, ‘unlawful state aid for nuclear power and constraint on trade. More details on this can be found here: http://www.energyfair.org.uk/actions
To increase the momentum on this bid, Energy Fair is asking anti-nuclear supporters to write a letter to the EU. All you have to do copy and paste the short letter at the end of this newsletter into an email, add your name and details at the bottom and send it to Gerry Wolf, Energy Fair’s co-ordinator. He will then ensure that it is sent to the right people at the EU.
As Gerry says: ‘The nuclear lobby is consistently there in the EU talking to officers. Logic dictates that if they repeat their arguments often enough, the officers start to believe them. We are trying to tilt the balance the other way by countering the spurious arguments that are being put forward to support this absurd deal.’
For the EU competition commission statement, check here: http://ec.europa.eu/competition/state_aid/cases/251157/251157_1507977_35... Public consultation to follow.
Meanwhile, the former Deputy Chair of the Liberal Democrats, Donnachadh McCarthy, has written a scathing letter to Lib Dem Secretary of State Ed Davey following the announcement of the Hinkley ‘strike price’ and criticizing the LibDem’s recent conference decision to support new nuclear power. In particular, McCarthy poured scorn on the government for becoming nuclear industry lackeys. Referring to the lack of a basic cost/benefit analysis in relation to new nuclear, McCarthy noted:
‘Any responsible political party not in the pockets of their in-house party nuclear-lobbyists, would carry out such an independent analysis and publish it for scrutiny. But the sorry fact is we have no such party of government - as all 3 parties are infected with internal bought nuclear lobbyists’.
Please encourage people to Boycott EDF
Energy experts tell us that we should review our tariff every year as companies tend to lock us into higher charges in ensuing years if we don’t. If you’re an EDF customer, please switch using our guidelines on the website http://boycottedf.org.uk/ Please encourage other people to do the same.
Go ahead to dump toxic waste in Cumbria:
On the 26th of February in Kendal without any fanfare or any media fuss Lillyhall Landfill was given the go ahead to dump High Volumes of so called Very Low Level wastes.
Local councillors say the decision is “out of their hands” as the Environment Agency has already given Lillyhall a permit to dump “exempt” and High Volume Very Low Level radioactive wastes. However the council could engage the services of a more ethical operator who does not take lucrative government contracts to dump radioactive wastes alongside household waste. The option to refuse the extension to the permit was not even discussed.
The European Union is already calling Lillyhall a Radioactive Waste Repository with planned routine releases of radiation to groundwaters – well that is news to most people in Cumbria. The Council have advised setting a limit on the waste at 200bq a gm – at this level there is an admitted adverse risk to health (EA Kingscliffe evidence).
Radiation free Lakeland: http://mariannewildart.wordpress.com/
Legal challenge rejected
Ireland’s main heritage group, An Taisce (the National Trust for Ireland), unsuccessfully challenged plans for two new nuclear reactors at Hinkley in the British High Court. The conclusion of the judicial review of the grant of development consent for Hinkley Point C was issued on 19th Dec 2013. DECC argued that a nuclear catastrophe was less than 50% probability, therefore didn't present a likely risk to the people of Ireland, who haven't been consulted on its construction.
If you have any ideas on how to help support the campaign to stop Hinkley C being built and raise awareness about the dangers of nuclear power, please let us know.
See you at the demos!
Energy Fair letter from Gerry Wolf:
Please send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org containing the short letter below. We will make sure that it gets to the Commissioner, with copies to Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for Energy, Connie Hedegaard, Commissioner for Climate Action, and President José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission.
When sending your email, please put in the ‘subject’ line: From [your name] re. no valid justification for subsidising nuclear power. NB putting your name in the subject line will help to prevent it being rejected by the Gmail spam filter.
Please copy and paste the following letter, adding your personal details at the bottom:
Dear Commissioner Almunia,
No valid justification for subsidising nuclear power
In connection with the proposed new nuclear plant at Hinkley Point in south-west England (reut.rs/1fPaYlx), I'm writing to ask you to open a formal investigation into this project and associated subsidies.
I endorse the open letter to you about this from Energy Fair (bit.ly/17DjIc2). In particular, I agree that there is no valid justification for subsidising nuclear power.
[Please give your name, organisation (if any), position in organisation (if any), email address, postal address, and phone number. Feel free to add comments to the letter if you wish, but preferably not too long.]
You can read Energy Fair’s open letter at:
www.energyfair.org.uk/home/open-letter (bit.ly/17DjIc2 ).