World Team Now board members joined a coalition to give President Obama, members of his Administration, and all members of the U.S. Congress a letter regarding the Fukushima nuclear accident in Japan. The letter was initiated by the Sustainable Energy Network comprised of 146 safe energy advocate organizations and businesses.
Photo courtesy of National Nuclear Security Administration / Nevada Site Office
JAPANESE NUCLEAR ACCIDENT – A TRAGIC REMINDER;
IT’S LONG PAST THE TIME TO END RELIANCE ON NUCLEAR POWER
March 25, 2011
President Barack Obama
The White House
Washington, DC 20500
Dear President Obama:
We, the 146 undersigned safe energy advocates, have been speaking out about the risks and dangers posed by nuclear power for years – for many of us, since before the 1986 Chornobyl* and 1979 Three Mile Island accidents as well as the hundreds of other radioactive releases, unplanned shut-downs, and other mishaps that have continuously plagued both the U.S. and the international nuclear industries since their founding.
While nuclear power’s unacceptable safety, environmental, public health, economic, and national security risks should have been self-evident long before now, the latest unfolding nuclear disaster in Japan once again underscores the following:
Nuclear plants can never be designed to withstand all potential “acts of God.”
Nuclear plants can never be designed to withstand all instances of “human error.”
Nuclear plants can never be designed to withstand all types of “mechanical malfunction.”
Nuclear plants can never be designed to withstand all forms of “terrorist attack.”
There is no such thing as “safe” nuclear power.
There is no such thing as “clean” nuclear power.
There is no such thing as “cheap” nuclear power.
Consequently, the Price-Anderson cap on liability in the event of an accident should be repealed, all proposed governmental financial and regulatory incentives for new nuclear plant construction – including loan guarantees, accelerated licensing, and inclusion in a “clean energy standard” – should be rejected, and no new reactors should be built.
Existing nuclear reactors should be phased out as rapidly as possible, beginning with the oldest and/or most unsafe, and no presently-licensed reactors should have their operating lives extended.
Safety standards for existing reactors should be substantially tightened while they continue to operate and federal nuclear funding should be redirected to the orderly phase-out of those reactors as well as the safe decommissioning of closed reactors and disposal of radioactive waste.
National energy policy and funding should be refocused on greatly improved energy efficiency and the rapid deployment of renewable energy sources which are far cleaner, safer, and cheaper than nuclear power.
This letter was signed by World Team Now Board Members; Albert Boulanger, Director of Technical Strategy; Walter Andrews Director of Energy and the Environment and Suzanne Maxx Founder,President, Exec. Director.
To see the press release, the letter with signatories, and the list of initial recipients- click here. A copy of the letter also went to media outlets and these governmental representatives;
cc. Steven Chu, Secretary – U.S. Department of Energy
Ken Salazar, Secretary – U.S. Department of Interior
Gregory Jaczko, Chairman – U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Kristine Svinicki, Commissioner – U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
George Apostolakis, Commissioner – U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
William Magwood, Commissioner – U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
William Ostendorff, Commissioner – U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Lisa Jackson, Administrator – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Jon Wellinghoff, Chairman – Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Philip Moeller, Commissioner – Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Marc Spitzer, Commissioner – Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
John Norris, Commissioner – Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Cheryl LaFleur, Commissioner – Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
John Holdren, Director White House Office of Science & Technology
Nancy Sutley, Chair – White House Council on Environmental Quality
Peter B. Lyons, DOE Acting Assistant Secretary for Nuclear Energy
* Chernobyl is the correct Ukrainian spelling of what many of us know as “Chernobyl,” the Russian spelling. Since the nuclear accident site is in Ukraine and the official spelling in that country is “Chornobyl,” that is what we opted for here, as it is the most authentic.