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George Bush leads the US toward a policy of unilateral, pre-emptive counterproliferation warfighting strategy.

Abolish nuclear weapons

The Cold War may be over, but this does not mean nuclear weapons have disappeared. Far from it: There are over 30,000 nuclear weapons in the world, with more than a thousand of them ready to launch at a moment's notice, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Over 400 reactors in warships and nuclear submarines are still circlingthe globe. Some are rotting away on the bottom of the ocean or in adistant port somewhere in Russia. Accidents such as the Russiansubmarine, the Kursk, tragically sinking in the Barents Sea can happenevery day, anywhere.

Over 2,000 nuclear weapons tests have left a legacy of global andregional contamination. People living near the test sites have sufferedfrom cancers, stillbirths, miscarriages and other health effects -- and are still suffering today. Manyhad to leave their hometown or island as it became too contaminated tolive there.

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The nuclear threat has quite literally scaled down in the last twodecades. While the prospect of an all out exchange of arsenals betweenRussia and the US has receded, the 15 kilotons of destructionthat obliterated Hiroshima could today be accomplished with a lunch-boxsized bomb. George Bush talks openly of developing new "more useable"nuclear weapons. Even more alarmingly, the administration continues toseek approval for a programme geared toward designing more robust, more'usable' nuclear weapons.

The prospects of a nuclear weapon actuallybeing used are perhaps greater today than during the cold war.

Today, the number of countries involved in active weapons programsis increasing. A growing number of countries are lining up to join thenuclear club, increasing the chance that a nuclear catastrophe willhappen somewhere on the planet. 

George Bush's war on Weapons of Mass Descruction had its firstconcrete result when the number of countries in the world with declarednuclear weapons increased to 8 from 7, when North Korea announced thatit had built "enough nuclear weapons to deter a US attack."

Nuclear brinkmanship is inevitable in a climate of nuclearhypocrisy. Only when all countries pursue nuclear disarmament in goodfaith can we begin putting the nuclear genie back in the bottle bybanning the use and manufacture of the nuclear materials at the heart of the bomb.

The only thing that will stop the threat is the voice of the second superpower: world opinion.

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As a soil scientist you would expect me to be enthusiastic about the benefits that soil gives to humanity and very happy that the United Nations designated 2015 as International Year of Soils. During this year there have been numerous...

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How fixing palm oil could save orangutans from extinction

Blog entry by Achmad Saleh Suhada | 21 August, 2015

The United Nations recently, and boldly, declared that orangutans could face extinction in Borneo. Why? Because deforestation is ‘simply unsustainable'. In Indonesia, we’ve shown that the palm oil sector was the single largest...

Volcano poses no threat to the Sendai nuclear plant – yep, we’ve heard that one before

Blog entry by Mamoru Sekiguchi | 20 August, 2015

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The old man and the sea of oil

Blog entry by Maria Favorsky | 18 August, 2015 1 comment

Lake Imlor is nestled deep within the Russian taiga in western Siberia. More than half of Russia's oil production comes from the surrounding region. For the Indigenous Khanty people who live here, the lake is sacred. They have...

Think Tianjin's bad? There's been more than one chemical explosion in China this year

Blog entry by Yixiu Wu | 18 August, 2015 1 comment

About a week ago, on a late Wednesday night, a sight of almost Armageddon proportions confronted the residents of Tianjin. Whether they witnessed the red and orange blaze shooting up to the sky from their apartment windows; or whether...

Indian Independence Day: Dissent is vital in a democracy

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As India’s 69th Independence Day approaches, a new fight for freedom is afoot. This time, the struggle is one to define and defend what a real democracy should be. This time, the power we need to challenge is one of our own making,...

Esperanza investigates agrotoxics in the Gulf of California

Blog entry by Maïa Booker | 13 August, 2015 1 comment

The Greenpeace ship Esperanza is currently on the second leg of its tour in the Gulf of California, investigating toxic chemicals associated with agriculture. Last week, activists sent a message to food companies Bimbo, La Costeña, and...

The ninth extinction

Blog entry by Rex Weyler | 13 August, 2015

Earth's living community is now suffering the most severe biodiversity crisis in 65 million years, since a meteorite struck near modern Chicxulub, Mexico, injecting dust and sulfuric acid into the atmosphere, and devastating 76% of all...

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