Fukushima: Don't Forget

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

 

The thin ice under nuclear regulatory independence

Blog entry by Jan Haverkamp | 19 December, 2013 2 comments

In this space I have written before about the importance of nuclear regulatory agencies being fully independent. Fukushima showed that a lack of independence leads to complacency and that complacency adds to the complexity of nuclear...

Permanent crisis at Fukushima

Blog entry by Justin McKeating | 10 December, 2013 18 comments

Hundreds of tons of radioactively contaminated water leak from the damaged Fukushima nuclear reactors every day. That water has to go somewhere and the operator of the plant is running out of places to store it. So the suggestion has...

All the king's horses and all the king's men can't put trust in TEPCO back together again

Blog entry by Justin McKeating | 15 November, 2013 19 comments

Is TEPCO, the hapless operator of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, even remotely interested in trying to repair its shattered reputation? After another cover-up was revealed at the plant this week, we doubt it. ...

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:

Cynical US's hidden agenda in offer to help Japan with Fukushima 

Blog entry by Dr. Rianne Teule | 5 November, 2013 6 comments

The US has “kindly offered” to help Japan with the decommissioning of the Fukushima reactors and the problems with the ongoing leakages of radioactively contaminated water. Is the US being the good Samaritan? Unfortunately not.

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