|published Monday, April 22, 2013 ||530 Views :: 0 Comments|
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 19, 2013
CONTACT: Snake River Alliance
Liz Woodruff, Executive Director
208-344-9161 (w); 208-871-4597 (c)
BOISE – If Thursday’s complaint by two Idaho National Laboratory workers exposed to plutonium shows anything, it is that the Department of Energy and its INL contractor must be more vigilant about the hazards of the materials handled at the Idaho site but also more transparent when dangerous accidents occur and more responsible in helping injured workers, the Snake River Alliance said Friday.
INL workers Ralph Stanton and Brian Simmons say INL contractor Battelle Energy Alliance (BEA) not only created a dangerous work environment but also retaliated against the two when they raised concerns about their exposure to plutonium in a November 2011 accident that affected more than a dozen workers.
On Thursday, Seattle attorney Jack Sheridan filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor alleging the retaliation but also that BEA downplayed the significance of the workers’ plutonium exposure, transferred them to lower level jobs and took various forms of disciplinary actions against them.
|published Tuesday, January 15, 2013 ||2279 Views :: 0 Comments|
For Immediate Release
Jan. 14, 2013
Violation of NRC’s “QualityAssurance” Regulations Necessitate Re-inspection and
Possible Abandonment of Reactor Vessel
--- Exclusive ANA Photos Linked Below- Credit to ANA Must be Given if Used ---
Columbia, SC – The broken railroad car assumed to be carrying the massive AP1000 reactor pressure vessel destined for the construction site at Southern Company’s Plant Vogtle in Georgia has been spotted unguarded near the dock in the port of Savannah.
The purpose-built, articulated“Schnabel” rail car, apparently under control of reactor vendor Westinghouse,sits parked outside on a rail line in a port area which is viewable from a public sidewalk. The reactor pressure vessel (RPV) is covered by a large blue tarp and is not directly visible. Beyond an occasional drive-by of vehicles, no security of any kind nor were any repair or inspection activities observed. No cranes capable of lifting the 300-ton vessel were visible.
“Though perhaps too heavy to steal or roll out of the port unnoticed, the reactor vessel and rail car appear highly vulnerable to malicious acts of damage, subtle acts of sabotage and humid,salt air-induced corrosion, “according to Tom Clements of the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA), who observed the rail car parked in the port on January 13.
|published Thursday, August 30, 2012 ||2259 Views :: 0 Comments|
Alliance for Nuclear Accountability Celebrates 1987 Founding with Day-long Conference and Reception in Seattle on Sat. Sept. 22
For immediate release, August 28, 2012
Contact: Bob Schaeffer (239) 395-6773 or Susan Gordon (505) 473-1670
Leaders of organizations that monitor nuclear weapons production and cleanup program will gather in Seattle, Washington, on Saturday, September 22 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA). Local, regional and national ANA network members watchdog U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) nuclear weapons sites and advocate for programs that protect human health and the environment.
Founded in Seattle as the Military Production Network (MPN), the alliance is currently headquartered in Santa Fe, New Mexico near the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory. ANA’s three dozen groups represent the concerns of communities downwind or downstream from U.S. nuclear research, testing, production, waste storage, and cleanup sites. Over two and a half decades, MPN and ANA have played key roles in changing nuclear policies, including stopping new weapons systems, advocating for billions of dollars in clean-up funds, and developing local advisory boards at many sites (see list of milestones below)
|published Tuesday, August 28, 2012 ||3223 Views :: 4 Comments|
For Immediate Release: August 28, 2012
Memo Urges DOE to Remove Bechtel as the Design Authority, Warning Bechtel “is not competent to complete their role”
Seattle, WA: Hanford Challenge today released a high-ranking Director’s memorandum that urges termination of the key duties of government contractor, Bechtel National, Inc. (“Bechtel”; “BNI”). A litany of charges question whether Bechtel should continue its role at the Hanford nuclear site, including a long history of incompetence, misleading the government, overcharging, and unsafe designs.
The memo states, “[t]he number and significance of these issues indicate that Bechtel National Inc. is not competent to complete their role as the Design Authority for the WTP [Waste Treatment Plant], and it is questionable that BNI can provide a contract-compliant design as Design Agent.”
The memo continues, noting that “[t]he behavior and performance of Bechtel Engineering places unnecessarily high risk that the WTP design will not be effectively completed...”
|published Thursday, August 23, 2012 ||3326 Views :: 1 Comments|
For immediate Release: August 23, 2012
Alliance for Nuclear Accountability
Tom Clements, ANA, Columbia,SC, tel. 803-834-3084
Katherine Fuchs, ANA,Washington, DC, tel. 202-544-0217, ext. 2503
Columbia, SC - A presentation to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) on experimental Mixed Oxide plutonium fuel (MOX) made from surplus weapons reveals a major hurdle for the MOX program at the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site. On August 8, NRC staff inthe preliminary stages of licensing MOX plutonium fuel was informed by Global Nuclear Fuels (GNF) that MOX intended for use in boiling water reactors (BWRs) would need to undergo extensive testing, delaying full-scale MOX production and use.
|Brown's ferry reactor in AL, where the DOE plans to use MOX|
GNF, which makes BWR fuel at its facility in Wilmington, North Carolina, revealed that its licensing plan involves testing sixteen “lead use assemblies” (LUAs) between 2016 and 2025. MOX made from weapons-grade plutonium has never been tested or used in a BWR and the NRC agreed that such MOX was a “new fuel form” requiring multi-year testing in a reactor. During this test period, no commercial BWR MOX use could take place.
This news comes just as the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) conducts a series of hearings on its MOX plans, which fail to address GNF’s extended testing schedule for the new fuel. At the first hearing on the DOE’s Draft Surplus Plutonium Disposition Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (Draft SEIS), in Los Alamos, NM Alliance for Nuclear Accountability Director Susan Gordon stated “No MOX plant operational schedule is presented, no plan or schedule for MOX testing in [Tennessee ValleyAuthority] or "generic" reactors is presented and no schedule for full-scale use of MOX is presented. Therefore, no Record of Decision can be issued.”
|published Tuesday, August 14, 2012 ||2634 Views :: 3 Comments|
Kansas City Peace Planters
August 14, 2012
Rachel M. MacNair, Ph.D., Petition Coordinator, 816.753.2057
Ann Suellentrop, 913.271.7925
Web page: foolish-investment.com
Citizens plan to offer expert details on how the new Botts-road plant is actually a job loser because the same resources spent on alternative products would provide more jobs than the declining market in nuclear weapons will.
Hearings for the citizen-initiated ballot measure, “Prevention of City’s Future Financial Involvement in Nuclear Weapons Production,” are scheduled for Wednesday, August 15, 2012, at 1:30 PM. These are to be held by the Planning, Zoning & Economic Development Committee chaired by Councilmember Ed Ford, on the 26th Floor of City Hall. They are not considering the ordinance itself, but an ordinance to place it on this year’s November 6 ballot.
|published Tuesday, July 31, 2012 ||2520 Views :: 13 Comments|
Federal Register Notice Obtained in Advance, with Meetings Dates in NM, SC, TN, AL
For Immediate release
July 26, 2012
Contact: Tom Clements, tel. 803-834-3084, cell 803-240-7268, firstname.lastname@example.org
Columbia, SC – A key Department of Energy (DOE) environmental document analyzing disposal of 13.1 metric tons of surplus weapons-grade plutonium and which is to be formally released on Friday, July 27, is inadequate and must be discarded, according to the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA), a public interest organization which has been monitoring the program since its inception in the mid-1990s.
“Even though questions about the cost and direction of the program to dispose of plutonium as nuclear fuel are growing, the document breaks no new ground and poses few new options which are badly needed concerning disposal of the nation’s surplus plutonium,” said Tom Clements, Nonproliferation Policy Director for the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA). “Given the significant obstacles that confront this program as now conceived, DOE must begin a full review of plutonium disposition options and develop new approaches not tied to use of costly experimental plutonium fuel.”
|published Tuesday, July 17, 2012 ||2177 Views :: 4 Comments|
News of Poor Quality Piping Comes Week before NRC “Status” Meeting on MOX Plant Construction at the DOE’s Savannah River Site, Piping Issue to be Raised at Meeting
July 17, 2012
For Immediate Release
Contact: Tom Clements, 803-834-3084, cell 803-240-7268
MOX Services July 12 letter to NRC Available on Request
Columbia, SC --- Quality of important piping in the construction of the plutonium fuel (mixed oxide fuel, MOX) plant at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site (SRS) in South Carolina has emerged as an issue of concern, according to a letter to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).
Shaw AREVA MOX Services, in charge of the MOX plant construction, has admitted to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission that it has received stainless steel piping from BF Shaw which does not meet required specifications. In a July 12 letter to the NRC, which is reviewing a license application for the facility, the company admitted that some of the piping failed a key test but did not reveal if any of the low-quality pipe had already been placed in the MOX facility.
MOX Services revealed in the letter that some of the ½-inch pipe delivered to the MOX plant was evidently subjected to improper heat treatment and thus did not meet the rigorous standards required for materials being used in the MOX plant construction.
|published Friday, June 08, 2012 ||2363 Views :: 11 Comments|
For immediate Release: June 8, 2012
Contact: Tom Clements, Nonproliferation Policy Director - email@example.com, 803-240-7268
One SMR Design being Eyed at SRS for Use of Plutonium Fuel (MOX) and
Production of Tritium Gas Used in Nuclear Weapons
Columbia, SC --- Documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA) reveal unrealistic plans for pursuit of “small modular reactors” (SMR) at the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site, located near Aiken, South Carolina. The obtained Memoranda of Agreement (MOA) between SMR vendors and the Savannah River Site address three conceptual designs: NuScale, SMR, LLC and Gen4 Energy (formerly Hyperion).
“It’s clear that officials at SRS are caught up in an unrealistic public relations campaign to promote imaginary SMRs at the site,” said Tom Clements, Nonproliferation Policy Director with the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability. “SRS is unfortunately staking its future on development of SMRs when there is little indication that they will be economically or technologically practical. The future of SMRs at SRS is doubtful at best and no amount of public relations spin will make them come true absent sound designs and large amounts of private funding.”
|published Wednesday, June 06, 2012 ||2787 Views :: 1 Comments|
For Immediate Release: June 6, 2012
Contact: Katherine Fuchs, Program Director firstname.lastname@example.org, 414-324-4228
Tom Clements, Nonproliferation Policy Director email@example.com 803-834-3084
Today, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed an amendment offered by Rep. Fortenberry (R-NE). Members of the House from both sides of the aisle spoke in favor of Rep. Fortenberry’s amendment, which moved $17 million from the Mixed Oxide Plutonium Fuel (MOX) Program to the Global Threat Reduction Initiative (GTRI). The amendment, which passed with a vote of 328 to 89, was offered during discussion of appropriations for Department of Energy funding.
The passage of the amendment is a clear indication that congressional oversight of the MOX program is increasing. The amendment comes on the heels of an earlier cut of $152 million from the MOX program by the House Appropriations Committee.
The Global Threat Reduction Initiative is the front line of defense in our nation’s fight to prevent nuclear bomb materials from falling into the hands of terrorists. Rep. Fortenberry’s amendment brings funding for this critical program up to the President’s requested level.