Kucinich to lead 1000s anti-nuclear, pro-renewable energy Occupiers

September 17, 2012 by  
Filed under Green Energy News

Congressman Dennis Kucinich is hosting a Congressional briefing, Thursday, September 20, 2012, on medical effects of radiation exposure, and health threats presented by United States nuclear power plants, nuclear fleet, and the on-going tragedy in Fukushima, Japan. The briefing is part of a series of anti-nuclear events including an Occupy the Nuclear Regulatory Commission demonstration and Fukushima evacuees’ presentations.

Expert testimony from Physicians for Social Responsibility and others are among those slated to present at a Congressional hearing hosted by Congressman Dennis Kucinich Thursday before the Occupy NRC demonstration this weekend.

“The briefing will give legislators information that they need about the ongoing situation in Japan and the problems with the continued use of nuclear power in the U.S. Radiation is a deadly legacy, and nuclear power is dirty, dangerous and expensive – and unnecessary when we can turn to clean, safe, cheap solar and wind power,” stated Kucinich in a written statement about the briefing.

The human rights group Roots Action is urging the public to invite elected representatives and senators to attend the briefing.

“There is an ongoing nuclear disaster in Japan that has displaced hundreds of thousands of people. Prior to this disaster, the regulators in Japan said they had all safety measures possible in place. Our Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has said the same thing about our 104 aging nuclear power plants, 23 of which have the same flawed design as in Fukushima.”

Nuclear disasters are not unique to Japan. Chernobyl killed and sickened many, as did Three Mile Island on a smaller scale. A nuclear plant in Virginia was damaged by an earthquake last year.

One Pentagon report documents 563 nuclear mistakes, malfunctions, and false alarms over the years.

Uranium mining profiteers, part of the nuclear cycle of rights abusers, now wanting to reopen in Virginia, have spread cancer through every community they have touched. Depleted uranium (DU) weapons has likely contributed to thousands of deaths and birth-defects from Australia and the former Yugoslavia and Iraq to members of the U.S. military and their families, not to mention weapons’ producers in places like Jonesborough, Tennessee.

The United States has also sold DU weapons to 29 other countries.

The Coalition Against Nukes (CAN) is urging the public to attend a series of events in the Washington, D.C., area, September 20-22, including the Capitol Hill rally, the Congressional briefing, a fundraiser at Busboys and Poets, a ceremony at the Museum of the American Indian, a rally at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, a film screening, and a strategy session.

CAN intends to draw the attention of legislators, the media and the public to the critical dangers of nuclear power, nuclear waste, weapons production and uranium mining. It calls for immediate shutdown of this country’s 23 Fukushima-style nuclear reactors and phase out of nuclear energy because it puts local communities at risk from deteriorating reactors, earthquakes, operator error and terrorist attack.

“At a time when Fukushima’s radiation release, our own aging fleet of decaying nuclear reactors and the ever-present possibility of nuclear war threaten the health, safety, lives and genetic futures of every living being on earth, it’s outrageous that those vying for this country’s leadership have said not one word about any aspect of the nuclear issue,” said Priscilla Star, Co-Founder of CAN.

The event this weekend is endorsed by over 70 anti-nuclear, environmental and citizen’s organizations, including the Sierra Club, Friends of the Earth and Occupy Wall Street, Rally for a Nuclear-Free Future and the “powerful Congressional briefing by experts on nuclear energy sponsored by Congressman Dennis Kucinich’s office,” CAN says.

Other actions slated are a meeting of concerned citizens and the new NRC Chair, Allison Macfarlane, at NRC headquarters while an “Occupy the NRC” rally will take place outside the NRC headquarters; a sacred Native American ceremony in front of the Museum of the American Indian for the desecration of Native lands by radiation contamination; C.A.N. fundraiser with music and speakers at Busboys and Poets; and a night of films and discussion at the Letelier Theatre in Georgetown.

“Despite the best PR efforts by the for-profit nuclear industry, nuclear energy is not ‘green’ energy,” CAN says. “The entire fuel cycle from the mining and milling of uranium to nuclear energy production, radioactive waste and use of weaponry contaminates all life forms, forever.

“Ongoing exposure to radioactive contaminants causes chronic and terminal conditions, such as cancer, thyroid and heart diseases, miscarriage, birth defects and genetic damage. Illness, genetic mutation and death in the aftermath of Fukushima, Chernobyl and Three Mile Island have shown that no one can guarantee the safety of nuclear reactors and no one is immune to its threat.”

Speakers slated for the three-day event include: Green Party presidential candidate Dr. Jill Stein, Arnie Gundersen of Fairewinds.com, Friends of the Earth President Emeritus Brent Blackwelder, Paul Gunter of Beyond Nuclear, Dr. Margaret Flowers – Congressional Fellow for Physicians for a National Health Program, Greenpeace’s Nuclear Policy Analyst Jim Riccio, Harvey Wasserman of NukeFree.org, Fukushima natives and evacuees from Japan.

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