Friday, February 27, 2009

Against the Use of New Nuclear Power Plants

February 22nd, 2009

Dear Readers,

The enclosed Resolution Against the Use of New Nuclear Power Plants to Solve America's Energy Problems passed this weekend (Feb. 20-21, 2009) at a meeting of the California-Pacific Conference of the United Methodist Church, Conference Board of Church and Society. The Resolution was presented by Peter Moore-Kochlacs. Peter then took the document to Washington, where he is right now, presented it to 25 people from various interfaith groups, and plans to present it to Congressional aides this Monday (February 23, 2009).

I am deeply honored to have had a part in the creation of the Resolution, along with many other people, and I hope it will be widely distributed and endorsed. If you, or any group you are associated with, endorses this Resolution, please contact Peter and let him know:

Peter Moore-Kochlacs


Ace Hoffman
Carlsbad, CA
Resolution against the use of new nuclear power plants to solve America's energy problems
Whereas the Bible is clear that we are not to pollute our neighborhoods, the planet, and the poor, but are to be good stewards of all (Genesis 2:15, Isaiah 24, Jeremiah 4:2&7,Micah 6:6-8 & Matthew 22:36-40), and

Whereas the building of nuclear power plants, the generation of nuclear power and the plant’s radiation byproducts have been proven to be very unhealthy to life, and

Whereas, every step in the nuclear process is fossil-fuel intensive, including mining, milling, fuel fabrication, building the power plants, and even operating them -- let alone the fossil fuel and other resources which will be needed to care for the used reactor cores after they have been irradiated inside the reactor, and

Whereas, the only safe nuclear power plant is one that does not exist, since no human structure (e.g. underground storage facilities, kick and roll burial of “low level” radioactive materials) can withstand the forces of nature, and

Whereas, every step in the nuclear process is not only fossil-fuel intensive, but terribly polluting in its own right, starting with leakages of radioactive radon gas from the mine tailings, to the radioactive "shine" which emanates from the spent fuel casks, despite several feet of concrete and several inches of steel, and

Whereas, our children are 100 to 1000 times more susceptible to radiation poison damage than adults, and

Whereas, thousands of diseases which are caused or enhanced or exacerbated by radiation are so much worse for children who have no voice or vote, and

Whereas, there is a very sound scientific reason why nearly $100 billion dollars in research funding so far has produced nothing in the way of safe containments for nuclear waste (the scientific reason being that radioactive decay is far stronger than any chemical bond in nature -- known or postulated), and

Whereas, money spent on nuclear power will buy, at most, half the number of jobs that money spent in developing and building cleaner energy sources, such as wind power, would buy, and the new energy would be delivered as much as ten years sooner, and

Whereas, the nuclear industry is incapable of purchasing insurance on the open market, because the size of a catastrophe would bankrupt any and all insurance agencies, and

Whereas, the Government does not provide adequate insurance (the Price-Anderson Act is a hollow shell which would hardly compensate any one after an accident); those few who would receive anything, would get fractions of a penny on the dollar, and

Whereas, every operating nuclear power plant produces isotopes of plutonium and hydrogen and other elements which are the raw materials of nuclear bombs, and

Whereas, every operating nuclear power plant has a list of security and safety violations, which if fully known and understood by the public, would create such an outcry that all current nuclear power plants would likely be shut down, and

Therefore, be it resolved that the California Pacific Conference Board of Church and Society of the United Methodist Church insist that the United States Federal Government provide that no government money be invested in any nuclear power technology, except as maybe necessary to pay for shutting down the current nuclear power plants as quickly as possible and caring for their waste in as safe as possible a manner, and

Therefore, be it further resolved that we oppose the building of any new nuclear power plants, their funding, or their approval and that the currently operating plants be closed as soon as feasible, and

Therefore, be it further resolved that people who have already been harmed by nuclear power be both identified and compensated as best as possible, and

Therefore, be it further resolved that cleaner energy alternatives such as solar, wind, geo-thermal (atmospheric vortex engines, ocean thermal energy conversion, low flow rate undersea turbines) and other workable and sustainable clean energy solutions be invested in by our Federal Government, instead of Nuclear Power Plants, and

Therefore, be it finally resolved that this resolution be presented to members of the US Congress, other government bodies, public policy organizations, religious bodies and congregations of faith across the United States and World for their information and hopeful affirmation of it.
Ace Hoffman
Author, The Code Killers:
An Expose About Nuclear Crimes High and Low, Large and Small, Far and Wide
Free download:
phone: (800) 551-2726; (760) 720-7261
address: PO Box 1936
Carlsbad, CA 92018
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1 comment:

Rod Adams said...

This resolution is full of dangerous misinformation. If it is accepted by growing numbers of people, it has the potential to inhibit skilled people from using one of God's greatest gifts as a tool in a very important struggle.

Atomic fission of heavy metals like uranium, thorium and plutonium is the only tool I know of that will empower us to move beyond the use of another great tool - fossil fuel combustion. Combustion, also known as fire, has allowed human society to develop and grow for many millennia on a world that God created and continues to care deeply about.

Like so many other materials that are part of that creation, uranium and thorium have useful properties that can be put to the task of enabling human development. Their special properties are incredible - every time a quantity of heavy metal is split apart into two other elements, it releases 2 million times as much energy as the chemical reaction of oxidizing the same mass of a hydrocarbon like oil or natural gas.

When fission occurs, a vast amount of heat is released, and a tiny amount of waste material - slightly less than the weight of the original heavy metal - is produced. That material can be dangerous for some time, but much of it is so unstable that it decays rapidly to inert material that does not harm anyone. Even in its most dangerous form, it is a relatively simple matter to keep it sealed up in a container that prevents it from harming either people or the environment. The total quantity of waste is so tiny that every bit of what has been produced in 50 years of nuclear power plant operation could fit on a single football field in an ordered arrangement less than 25 feet high.

The same cannot be said of fossil fuel waste, which is so voluminous that it must be released and spread into the environment. The waste materials produced when burning coal, oil or natural gas are often quite deadly if concentrated. The only solution that works for fossil fuel is dilution into the seeming vastness of our shared atmosphere and water supplies.

That method might have worked when humans only occupied tiny portions of the globe in widely distributed communities, but it is working less and less well as the population of fellow creations of god increases. What we thought was vast and unlimited - our atmospheric waste dump - is now recognized as a fragile part of the creation.

I believe that God enabled people like Fermi, Szilard, and Rickover and countless other atomic pioneers to gain insight into fission power at just the right time in human development. We need a reliable source of useful power to continue to thrive as a species, but we also need to thrive in such a way as to not foul the only nest that we have and share.

As a former submarine officer, I can testify that atomic fission works inside a sealed ship hundreds of feet below the surface of the ocean to provide humans with all of the power and energy they need for survival in one of the harshest environments on the planet - the deep ocean. If it can work there, it can work anywhere.

I am pretty certain that the authors of this resolution know far less about the topic of fission than I do. That is not supposed to be bragging; I have simply had the somewhat rare opportunity to spend a dozen years in close proximity to safe, reliable nuclear fission power plants and to be partially responsible for keeping them that way.

Rod Adams
Publisher, Atomic Insights
Host and producer, The Atomic Show Podcast