News from Beyond Nuclear April 24, 2008
Hall of Nuclear Shame: “She caused thousands of residents, workers and first responders to suffer injury and, in some cases, death, due to unnecessary exposure to toxins released by the collapse of the World Trade Center buildings.” So said a justifiably angered New York representative, Jerrold Nadler, in the Washington Post, after an appeals court this week reversed a lower court decision that had held former Environmental Protection Agency director, Christine Todd Whitman, liable for twice assuring New York City residents in the days after the World Trade Center attacks that the air was safe to breathe. This is the same Todd Whitman who co-anchors the pro-nuclear, industry-funded propaganda front group currently touting nuclear energy around the globe. Her co-booster is none other than industry darling, Patrick Moore, whose claim that he co-founded Greenpeace has been soundly debunked by the actual founders who noted that Moore applied to join the first Greenpeace sailing that departed two years after the organization was founded. (The actual founders were a group of Quakers and journalists). Moore’s “environmental” track record over the past 16 years includes advocacy on behalf of the logging and chemical industries and genetically modified foods and a host of other anti-environmental causes. Our View: Patrick Moore is frequently cited by the news media as an “environmentalist.” Last time we looked, the definition of an environmentalist was not a paid booster for the nuclear, chemical, clear-cut logging and GM foods industries. It’s time to set the record straight on this and Moore’s well-worn claim that he “co-founded” Greenpeace and expose his phony environmental credentials. As for Todd Whitman, the fact that she was given immunity from liability for putting New Yorkers in harm’s way because she is a federal official exposes the extraordinary moral double-standard between government and ordinary citizens. What You Can Do: Whenever the news media describes Moore or Todd Whitman as an “environmentalist” call them out on it. Write letters to the editors and call in to radio and television shows. Send them the source material found on the two Web sites we list below. If Moore or Todd Whitman show up in your community, be sure to show up yourself to challenge them on their so-called environmentalist credentials. Ask the tough questions. And check out other paid nuclear apologists on these Web sites: Source Watch and nuclearspin.org.
Still Time to Oppose Bombplex: Thanks to a hard-won extension, it is still possible to submit comments to the U.S. Department of Energy on its proposed "Complex Transformation" (a.k.a. Bombplex 2030) nuclear weapons infrastructure modernization plans. The new deadline is April 30th. Over 85,000 public comments, almost all critical and calling for nuclear weapons abolition and radioactive contamination cleanup, have already been submitted, a record on these issues. For guidance on content and submission of comments, visit the Complex Transformation page on the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability Web site.
Chernobyl Remembered: As we remember – on April 26th – the world’s worst nuclear accident, it’s important also to recognize that the victims of that accident are still being born today and that quantifying those who died, will die, or who will live forever maimed by the accident is virtually impossible. Sadly, exposure to radiation can be passed down – genetically – to children born after the accident. Many now languish in poorly-resourced orphanages. Some of the faces of Chernobyl have been captured by the award-winning photographer, Gabriela Bulisova. You can view a selection of her pictures on our Web site at: www.beyondnuclear.org as we remember just what kind of catastrophic damage nuclear power can effect.
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Beyond Nuclear aims to educate and activate the public about the connections between nuclear power and nuclear weapons and the need to abandon both to safeguard our future. Beyond Nuclear advocates for an energy future that is sustainable, benign and democratic. Beyond Nuclear staff can be reached at: 301.270.2209. Or view our Web site at: www.beyondnuclear.org