International Peace Walk for a Nuclear Free Future

Greetings fellow walkers and hosts,

The International Peace Walk for a Nuclear Free Future finally completed it's journey as we walked into New York City last Saturday, joining with the other three walks that had arrived and the thousands of others who were converging for the NPT Review Conference.  Receiving this letter means you touched the walk in some way, either as a walker, hosting us, bringing us food, or helping out in some other way; one way or the other your email got into our records.  We are so grateful for all the tremendous efforts everybody made as we passed through so many communities and met so many wonderful people.  You have inspired and energized us to keep working to end the nuclear madness that threatens us all.

We in Footprints for Peace hope we can all keep in touch.  The best way for you to find out what we are doing is to go to our website and sign up for our newsletter, and you can become a friend of Footprints for Peace on Facebook.  We are planning a couple of events this summer you might be interested in:

  • Run for Freedom, June 12 and 13 we will run for Leonard Peltier
  • Bikes Not Bombs, July 29 to August 6 we will bike from Portsmouth, OH to Oak Ridge, TN for the Names and Remembrance Ceremony on Hiroshima day at Y-12

There is information about both of these events on our website.  We also support and/or will participate in the following events:

  • Flower Festival at the Great Smoky Mountains Peace Pagoda, May 15 (atlantadojo.tripod.com)
  • Mountain Justice Summer training camp, May 27 to June 6, on Pine Mountain, KY (www.mountainjustice.org)
  • Resistance for a Nuclear Free Future, July 4th weekend, Maryville College and Y-12, Oak Ridge, TN (nukewatch.com/30th/index.htm)
  • Scotland International Peace Walk for a Nuclear Free Future, July 31 to August 29 (information on our website)

As we continue to replenish our souls in anticipation of a busy summer, we remember that the Women's Walk for Peace from Brisbane to Canberra in Australia is still going strong.  Information about that walk is also on our website. We send them our love and support.

in peace and solidarity,
Jon Blickenstaff
FootPrints for Peace
www.footprintsforpeace.net

Offshore nukes

Consequences of spills can last for decades

From CNN:

As oil began approaching the coast of the United States, environmental scientists said the effects of the spill in the Gulf of Mexico could have ecological and biological consequences for years, if not decades.

The intricate ecosystem is a major source of seafood for the United States and hundreds of species of animals and plants are at risk, experts said.

Some areas in the path of the slick are particularly sensitive to problems because unlike the rocky coast of Alaska hit by oil from the Exxon Valdez disaster, much of the coastline that will be hit by the BP spill consists of marshy areas where the water is calmer and more difficult to clean.

The marshes are in extreme danger, said a biologist with the University of Houston who studies coastal wetlands.

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Radiation death in India raises nuclear safety concerns

From Reuters:

The radiation-related death of a scrap metal worker has raised concerns over nuclear safety in India, at a time when the Asian power is wooing foreign players to its $150 billion civilian nuclear market.

Authorities have launched a probe into the unauthorized disposal of a disused machine from the chemistry department of Delhi University, which contained the radioactive material cobalt-60 and ended up in a scrap metal hub in the capital.

A man died in hospital from exposure last week, in a case a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was quoted as saying was the most serious worldwide since 2006.

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New US study on nuclear plant health risks hailed

From BusinessWeek:

Pennsylvania officials and activists say they are glad the federal government is taking another look at whether people who live near nuclear plants have a higher risk of getting cancer.

The federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced last month that it was asking the National Academy of Sciences to do a "state-of-the-art study" on cancer risk for populations surrounding nuclear power facilities.

The academy is being asked to update a 1990 study released by the National Cancer Institute that found no increased risk of cancer deaths in counties surrounding 62 nuclear facilities, "including all of the nuclear power reactors operational before 1982," the commission said.

NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said the question of possible health effects comes up frequently from the public.

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Coalition questions NRC oversight of VY

From the Brattleboro Reformer:

The New England Coalition on Nuclear Pollution will have a chance to argue its case that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's oversight of management and maintenance at Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant is lacking.

On May 5, the NRC's petition review board will hear arguments from the NEC in support of its contention.

NEC filed the petition requesting the NRC undertake enforcement actions in response to Entergy's "failure" to understand Yankee's design basis and "the obvious inadequacy of Entergy VY's underground piping aging management plan ..."

NEC requested that the NRC conduct a diagnostic evaluation to assess both NRC and VY performance since Entergy assumed management of "the besieged and troubled facility."

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TMI -- 10 years after the lawsuits

From the York Daily Record:

Ten years ago a judge ruled there was insufficient evidence to link radiation from the Three Mile Island accident to health problems in test cases of about 2,000 plaintiffs.

Yet some people who co-exist with the operating nuclear plant continue to question whether the partial meltdown on March 28, 1979, released radiation into the environment that has affected their health.

They live in the historical shadow of a plant that suffered a partial meltdown, the worst nuclear accident in United States history.

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Study on nuke plants, cancer planned

From LancasterOnline.com:

Two decades after it last did so, the federal government is taking a new look at whether people who live near nuclear plants have a higher risk of getting cancer.

A 1990 study released by the National Cancer Institute found no increased risk of cancer deaths in counties surrounding 62 nuclear facilities, including Three Mile Island and Peach Bottom.

But the new $5 million three-year study, to be conducted by the private National Academy of Sciences beginning this summer, will be able to take advantage of advanced modeling methods and more detailed records on cancers and take into account a longer cancer latency period.

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New cancer study of areas around U.S. nuclear facilities brings relief in TMI area

From the Patriot News:

Brenda Galinac and her infant son fled to Pittsburgh a day after the 1979 accident at Three Mile Island. Her husband, John, a police officer, went to work, including duty at TMI during President Jimmy Carter’s visit.

The family, who lived a few miles from TMI, was interviewed by health researchers a few months after the accident, and everyone felt fine. But 20 years later, her son was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s disease. Two years after that, her husband developed thyroid cancer. Galinac contacted the researchers, but was told the study was closed.

That’s why she’s excited to learn of a new study that will look at cancer cases surrounding all U.S. nuclear facilities, including TMI in Londonderry Twp.

Galinac, who lives in Wellsboro, said people such as her husband and son, who recovered, must be counted in order to fully understand the health risks of living near nuclear power plants. "I’ve always felt the previous study closed too soon, and maybe the long-term effects of what happened weren’t documented. I don’t think anyone at the time knew how long it might take for the consequences of the accident to develop," said Galinac, 53.

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