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Nuclear energy costs the Earth

by Earthlife Africa

FILED IN: Energy and Fuels · Issue 5

Earthlife Africa, Cosatu, the Catholic Bishops Conference, the Environmental Justice Network Forum, the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa and a range of other organisations oppose the use of nuclear power in South Africa.

They are campaigning against the proposed new Pebble Bed Modular Reactor (PBMR) because:
• it is a waste of taxpayers’ money
• nuclear radiation is dangerous to workers, surrounding communities and communities on nuclear transport routes
• the waste problem cannot be solved and will last for thousands of years
• there are better, cleaner, cheaper, safer solutions for our energy challenges in the form of renewable energy.
Their demands are:
• No pebble bed reactors
• No nuke smelter at Pelindaba
• No fuel enrichment plant
• No nuke trucks on our roads
• No public money for nukes
• No more nuclear waste

What You Can Do
You have the right to participate in debates about nuclear power, influence decision making, and demand accountability from decision makers. Remember that our constitution says that everyone has the right to have the environment protected, for the benefit of present and future generations, through reasonable legislative and other measures that:
• prevent pollution and ecological degradation
• promote conservation
• secure ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources
• while promoting justifiable economic and social development.
Use your rights!
• YOU can write to Minister Marthinus Van Schalkwyk to support the Earthlife Africa appeal that was lodged after the Department of Environment and Tourism ruled in favour of the PMBR going ahead in terms of the Environmental Impact Assessment. You can also write to object to the establishment of a smelter for radio-active materials and a fuel enrichment plant for the PBMR at Pelindaba.

Fax a brief letter to Marthinus Van Schalkwyk:
Fax: (012) 322 0082 and (021) 465 3216
Mail: Private Bag X447, Pretoria, 0001
Tel: (012) 310 3611
Mail: Private Bag X9154, Cape Town, 8000
Tel: (021) 465 7240/2
• Access the Radio-Active Waste Management Policy at http://www.dme.gov.za. Express your opinion on the importance of such a policy for present and future generations.
• Phone radio talk shows and express your opinion against nuclear energy.
• Register as an interested party in the licensing process for the PBMR and Pelindaba Smelters. Ask the National Nuclear Regulator (NNR) to send up to date info on all nuclear developments. Phone Phil Nkwashu at 012-674 7191 or 012-674 7821.
• Write to Department of Minerals and Energy calling for the development of alternatives.
• Organize club or friends events to raise funds for the campaign.
• Contact Earthlife Africa (www.earthlife.org.za) for copies of the information booklet “What you need to know about South Africa’s nuclear Programme” “Uranium Road” and ask your library to keep copies available


  • 702 Nuclear Debate For those who missed the nuclear energy debate broadcast on 702 on 8 November 2007, featuring Dr David Figg (Earthlife) & Dr Adi Paterson (PBMR)...
  • What you’re NOT supposed to know about nuclear power On 25 June 2003, the Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism gave Eskom the About the PBMR This demo nuclear power station will cost around R12...
  • Nuclear power, dirty play An audacious recent appointment by South Africa’s Deputy President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka has inadvertently drawn closer public scrutiny to the South African nuclear industry—infamous for its...
  • DME’s Energy Summit puts our heritage at risk In 1994, South Africa held its first democratic elections. Part of that democratic heritage was that a new way of governing was brought into being....
  • Ten Reasons why the PBMR is not the answer Global warming and climate change pose a serious threat to societies of today and finding cleaner energy sources is a big challenge. It is evident...
  • Opposing Nuclear Energy If South Africa is to step back from the brink of atomic war and nuclear destruction, we must embrace the global struggles of peoples such...

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