Archive | March, 2011

Radiation from Japan Nuclear Meltdown detected in rainwater in the US

28 Mar

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health said Sunday that very low concentrations of radioiodine-131 that were likely from the Japanese power plant severely damaged by the earthquake and tsunami earlier this month have been detected in a sample of rainwater. Officials did not say where the sample was taken.

The agency said the sample was taken in the past week and is one of more than 100 around the country. It is part of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency network that monitors for radioactivity.

Read the rest of the story here.

Indigenous and Environmental Groups set sail from Australia to protest offshore oil drilling

27 Mar

A flotilla of six boats sailed from Auckland Sunday to launch a protest against plans by a Brazilian oil company to drill for oil and gas off the East Cape of the North Island.

The protesters, including the Greenpeace environmental group, the Royal Forest & Bird Protection Society and an East Cape tribe of indigenous Maoris, said they feared potential damage from an oil spill like last year’s BP accident in the Gulf of Mexico.

The government announced in June that it had given Brazil’s Petrobras International Braspetro BV a 5-year exploration permit, covering 12,333 square kilometres of the Raukumara Basin.

Riot in the streets of London!

26 Mar

Several hundred masked protesters clashed with police, attacked shops and occupied a top store in London after hundreds of thousands of people rallied against government austerity measures. Clad in black and covering their faces with scarves, the protesters clashed with police, hurling fireworks, petrol bombs and paint. Clothes store Topshop and bank HSBC had their windows smashed, while some protesters hurled missiles at London's landmark Ritz Hotel. Others lit a bonfire at Oxford Circus, in the heart of the shopping district.

Riot cops, bagpipers, steel bands, choirs and dancers were also out for the event.

Watch a video of the event:

200,000 in Germany protest nuclear power

26 Mar

Anti nuclear demonstrators march in Cologne, western Germany Saturday March 26, 2011 to protest against nuclear power. Poster in front reads: Fukushima warns: Pull the Plug on all Nuclear Power Plants. White banner behind reads : 'Solidarity with the people in Japan'. Some 200,000 people turned out in Germany's largest cities on Saturday to protest against the use of nuclear power in the wake of Japan's Fukushima reactor disaster, police and organizers said. In Berlin alone more than 100,000 took to the capital's streets to urge Germany's leaders to immediately abolish nuclear energy, police spokesman Jens Berger said. Organizers said some 210,000 people marched at the rallies in the countries four largest cities. "We can no longer afford bearing the risk of a nuclear catastrophe," Germany's environmental lobby group BUND said. (AP Photo/dapd/Roberto Pfeil)



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Police arrest Forest Defenders in Tasmania, Solidarity Actions in Melbourne & Bunbury Australia

25 Mar

The Earth First Journal! stands in solidarity with the actions taking place in Tasmania and Australia against the destruction of the wild!

About 20 protesters from the Huon Valley Environment Centre were involved in the demonstration at the Ta Ann office in Davey Street.

One protester tried to force his way into the office before being arrested.

More police arrived and other protesters were arrested for refusing to leave.

Two protesters have also been arrested after staging a demonstration within the roof of Forestry Tasmania’s Hobart headquarters.

The pair scaled the atrium to hang a banner calling for an immediate moratorium on logging of specified high conservation value forests.

After several hours of refusing to budge, the Still Wild Still Threatened demonstrators were removed from the building by police.

Click here for photos of all the actions, from Tasmania to Australia.

MEDIA RELEASE:

Media Release – 25 March 2011

“Today, the non violent stand for Tasmania’s forests spread across the CBD of Hobart.  Protests were held to target the State Government, Forestry Tasmania and Malaysian logging giant Ta Ann,” Huon Valley Environment Centre’s Jenny Weber said.

“Two conservationists have been arrested after climbing in the Forestry Tasmania headquarters, holding a banner calling for a moratorium now. Four conservationists were arrested after trying to enter the Ta Ann head office in Hobart.  And a strong show of support at the forest vigil at the Executive Building, with 100 people attending the last day of a successful ten day campaign organised by Huon Valley Environment Centre and Still Wild Still Threatened,” Jenny Weber said

“Our organisations are committed to continuing the campaign to call for the immediate protection of all native forests in Tasmania. Including a moratorium on the globally significant high conservation value forests and a swift transition out of native forest logging in Tasmania,” Jenny Weber said.

“Two conservationists who were arrested today remain in custody waiting to appear in court at 7:30pm tonight,” Jenny Weber said.

International Coal Group Sued over Selenium Pollution from W. Virginia Mine

25 Mar

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) – Three environmental groups sued coal operator ICG Eastern in federal court Wednesday over a Webster County surface mine they say has been discharging toxic selenium into streams for years.

The Sierra Club, the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition and the West Virginia Highlands Conservancy filed the case in U.S. District Court in Elkins over the Knight-Ink No. 1 mine. The complaint alleges violations of both state and federal law, including the federal Clean Water Act and the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act.

Read the rest here.

 

Union of Ontario Indians protest plans to ship radioactive waste over Great Lakes

25 Mar

By Eartha Jane Melzer

The Union of Ontario Indians will battle a plan to ship 1,600 tons of radioactive waste from the Bruce nuclear power complex to Sweden via the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway, the group announced this week.

UOI, a political advocacy organization that represents 39 First Nation communities in Ontario, said that the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission and Bruce Power Corporation failed to properly consult with First Nation communities before approving the plant to ship 16 contaminated steam generators from the Bruce Power complex in Kincardine.

“[M]ost of the Chiefs and Councils who are signatories to treaties all along the Great Lakes were never consulted,“ Southwest Regional Anishinabek Nation Chief Chris Plain said in a statement. “The duty to consult and accommodate must be done with the rights holders and we were never consulted.”

“We will do everything in our power to prevent the Ontario and Federal governments and the nuclear power industry from using our precious waterways as a garbage disposal route,” Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Patrick Madahbee said. “It is contrary to Supreme Court decisions, our aboriginal and treaty rights, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and the laws of Nature.”

Mayors from more than 70 communities along the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway have warned that the proposed shipment has not received adequate environmental review and threatens the water supply for millions people.

The ongoing nuclear disaster in Japan shows that accidents can result in radioactive contamination of water supplies.This week officials in Tokyo warned residents not to let infants drink the tap water because it contains elevated levels of radioactive iodine.

U.S. Dept. of Transportation approval is required for the Bruce shipment to pass through U.S. waters.

Wikileaks: Big Coal, Obama and Bagledesh Open Pit Mine

24 Mar


When thousands of Bangladeshi take to the streets again on March 28th as part of a decade-long battle to halt a devastating British-owned open-pit coal mine, the world will not only be watching whether Bangladesh’s government will honor a coal ban agreement from 2006 or resort to violence.

In light of disturbing WikiLeaks cables, American and worldwide human rights and environmental organizations will also be questioning why the Obama administration is covertly pushing for Bangladesh to reverse course and acquiesce to an internationally condemned massive open-pit mine that will displace an estimated 100,000-200,000 villagers and ravage desperately needed farm land and water resources.

Read the rest here!

Watch the video:

Greenpeace activists halt nuclear hearings

23 Mar

An environmental assessment of the proposed construction of new nuclear reactors at Darlington Power Plant was delayed Tuesday after Greenpeace activists chained themselves to a table in the hearing room.

Four activists — two men and two women — chained themselves to a large table from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday before Durham Regional Police officers removed everyone from the hearing room at Hope Fellowship Church on Bloor St. in Courtice.

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Australia: Lake Tyers Women Holding Blockade Against the Government

22 Mar

For the past two weeks, Indigenous women from the community of Lake Tyers, in East Gippsland, Victoria, have been holding a blockade against the state government's self-imposed rule over their community. The blockade officially went up on March 8, International Women's Day, in an effort to stop the government-appointed administrator (a consultant from the UK private company, Deloitte) and his staff from gaining entry to the community.

For the full article click here.