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

 

Nuclear power and the collapse of society

Blog entry by Rex Weyler | 5 May, 2017 13 comments

On March 1 1954, on Bikini Atoll, in the Marshall Islands, the US military detonated the world’s first lithium-deuteride hydrogen bomb, a thousand times more powerful than the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs. The radiation blew downwind,...

Chernobyl: lessons not learned

Blog entry by Rashid Alimov | 25 April, 2017 2 comments

A greyish brick building with a bust of Lenin in front of it. A school in Stariye Bobovichi in the Bryansk region of Russia. There could be something nostalgic about this picture, were it not for the feeling of danger it gives. When...

Priorities? Global military spending just hit US$1.6 trillion

Blog entry by Jen Maman | 25 April, 2017 2 comments

Military spending worldwide is going up. 2016 has seen governments around the world spend US$1.686 trillion on their militaries according to a new repor t from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). Spending...

This treaty would ban nuclear weapons. But will the world take it?

Blog entry by Jen Maman | 31 March, 2017

“I’m here at the U.N. asking for an abolition of nuclear weapons,” said Toshiki Fujimori, a survivor of the Hiroshima atomic bombing, to diplomats from more than 120 countries gathered at the UN general assembly on 27 March. ...

They want you to think the Fukushima nuclear disaster is over. But it’s still with us.

Blog entry by Yuko Yoneda | 10 March, 2017

Six years ago, over 15,000 people perished and tens of thousands of people's lives changed forever. Northeastern Japan was hit by a massive earthquake, followed by an enormous tsunami that wiped out coastal towns one after another.

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