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.

Henk Haazen at the helm of Tiama, leading the nuclear free Tasman flotilla out to sea where they will meet up with other Greenpeace boats to protest over plutonium being shipped through the Pacific Ocean.

Nuclear power is never safe, and the use of nuclear technology has never been 'peaceful'. Internationally, 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.

We are campaigning to end the use of nuclear power and its subsequent reprocessing, transporting and dumping of toxic waste.

To counter the use of nuclear power we want:

  • The adoption of universal best practice support schemes encouraging renewable energy uptake like wind
  • Levelling the playing field by removing massive subsidies to the fossil and nuclear fuel industries
  • Adopting a host of legally enforceable mechanisms to secure and accelerate a market share for renewable energy particularly in industrialised and emerging economies
  • Energy efficiency and conservation to curb ever-increasing demand

Greenpeace also wants total disarmament of nuclear weapons, and we'll always protest against, and endeavour to stop, nuclear weapons testing.

We'll also always campaign to keep New Zealand Nuclear Free!

Nuclear power is not a solution to climate change

Nuclear power remains dangerous, polluting, expensive and non-renewable. More nuclear power means more problems. It also means less resources invested in real solutions to growing energy demands.

Renewable energies, on the other hand, have truly limitless sources, can be more easily deployed in remote, underdeveloped regions, present absolutely no risk to global security and are environmentally friendly.

Nuclear power is not a solution to climate change. We need clean, renewable energy to power our future - read more.

Go to the Climate Change section to learn why we're acting to stop dirty energy (including nuclear) and promoting clean energy.

Nuclear legacy

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 United Nations amid a wave of unbridled atomic optimism. However, the use of nuclear power has never been "peaceful".

Nuclear installations, whether military or civil, have a sad record of accidents and incidents, shrouded in cover-ups, lies and misinformation. The generation of electricity in nuclear reactors produces substances than can be used for the fabrication of nuclear weapons. The dangers associated with the handling of weapons-useable nuclear substances require a high level of security and secrecy even in democratic countries.

Every part of the nuclear industry has unacceptable risks, from uranium mining to energy production to the unsolved problem of transporting and storing radioactive waste. Radiation released into the environment has led to the contamination of soil, air, rivers and oceans; causing cancer and other diseases in people.

Moreover, nuclear energy has never been economic, despite the massive state subsidies it has received for decades. Even now funding still pours into the nuclear sector at the expense of renewable resources like solar or wind energy.

Over half a century after Eisenhower's speech, the planet is left with the legacy of nuclear waste, which will be radioactive for tens or hundreds of thousands of years. The only logical solution is to close down the nuclear industry and stop creating the risk and the waste.

The latest updates

 

Marine life soaking up radiation along Fukushima coast

Blog entry by Greg McNevin | May 26, 2011

Two weeks ago we released preliminary results from our marine radiation monitoring work off the coast of Japan, near the melted-down and leaking Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. These results showed worrying levels of radioactive...

Rainbow Warrior begins sampling off Fukushima

Blog entry by nyoung | May 4, 2011

It has been a frustrating few days on the Rainbow Warrior. Until Sunday we were stopped outside of Tokyo bay, waiting out bad weather, trying to find a ship’s agent to represent us and arrange entry into port to fix our broken gyro...

Marine radiation monitoring blocked by Japanese government

Blog entry by Ike Teuling | May 2, 2011

Since the start of the Fukushima disaster I have been following the worrying developments from a safe distance in Amsterdam, but suddenly, I am on rocking ship getting closer to the disaster area every day. I joined the Rainbow...

Update: Fire burns at reactor 3 and food contamination concerns rise

Blog entry by Jess Miller | March 22, 2011

The Fukushima/Daiichi nuclear crisis continues, marked by confusion and a lack of information and transparency. Today, our team of nuclear experts and monitors followed reports of grey smoke coming out of the spent fuel pool of...

Video: Questions and answers on the Fukushima nulclear crisis

Blog entry by Andrew Davies | March 20, 2011

Yesterday, we sat one of our (extremely busy) nuclear issue experts down and asked him a few of the top questions people have been asking us.  If you don't find the answer you're looking for here, try our extensive Q and A briefing...

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