End the nuclear age

Greenpeace has always fought - and will continue to fight - vigorously against nuclear power because it is an unacceptable risk to the environment and to humanity. The only solution is to halt the expansion of all nuclear power, and for the shutdown of existing plants.

Nastya, from Belarus was only three years old when she was diagnosed with cancer of the uterus and lungs. According to local doctors the region has seen a huge increase in childhood cancer cases since the Chernobyl disaster.

We need an energy system that can fight climate change, based on renewable energy and energy efficiency. Nuclear power already delivers less energy globally than renewable energy, and the share will continue to decrease in the coming years.

Despite what the nuclear industry tells us, building enough nuclear power stations to make a meaningful reduction in greenhouse gas emissions would cost trillions of dollars, create tens of thousands of tons of lethal high-level radioactive waste, contribute to further proliferation of nuclear weapons materials, and result in a Chernobyl-scale accident once every decade. Perhaps most significantly, it will squander the resources necessary to implement meaningful climate change solutions.  (Briefing: Climate change - Nuclear not the answer.)

The Nuclear Age began in July 1945 when the US tested their first nuclear bomb near Alamogordo, New Mexico. A few years later, in 1953, President Eisenhower launched his "Atoms for Peace" Programme at the UN amid a wave of unbridled atomic optimism.

But as we know there is nothing "peaceful" about all things nuclear. More than half a century after Eisenhower's speech the planet is left with the legacy of nuclear waste. This legacy is beginning to be recognised for what it truly is.

Things are moving slowly in the right direction. In November 2000 the world recognised nuclear power as a dirty, dangerous and unnecessary technology by refusing to give it greenhouse gas credits during the UN Climate Change talks in The Hague. Nuclear power was dealt a further blow when a UN Sustainable Development Conference refused to label nuclear a sustainable technology in April 2001.

The risks from nuclear energy are real, inherent and long-lasting.

The latest updates

 

Thousands more cracks found in Belgian nuclear reactors, Belgian regulatory head...

Press release | 17 February, 2015 at 12:15

Brussels, 17 February 2015 – Following the discovery of thousands of additional cracks in critical components of two Belgian nuclear reactors, Greenpeace today called for immediate checks of nuclear power plants worldwide.

Japan celebrates one year completely nuclear-free and the birth of a clean energy future

Press release | 15 September, 2014 at 18:15

Tokyo, 15 September 2014 – Today, Japan celebrates a unique and inspiring anniversary, a full year nuclear free, a year without the constant risks and threats of nuclear power.

Japan abandons climate target, weakens chance of ambitious outcome from UN Climate Talks

Press release | 15 November, 2013 at 9:16

Warsaw, 15 November 2013 – About the Japanese government today downgrading its 2020 GHG cuts, Hisayo Takada, Climate Energy Campaigner for Greenpeace Japan said:

Japan must explain how it will stop water leaks at Fukushima - Greenpeace

Press release | 8 August, 2013 at 14:45

Tokyo, 8 August 2013 – Japan's government urgently needs to explain how it plans to take responsibility for the leakage of contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear plant and seek international help to draw up a clear action plan to resolve...

Unjust laws for nuclear power leave Fukushima victims suffering

Press release | 11 March, 2013 at 0:16

Tokyo, March 11, 2013 – On the second anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, Greenpeace made the following statements to highlight the flawed laws protecting the nuclear industry and the fact that hundreds of thousands of people in Japan...

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