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NB: The latest updates will be on top, so that daily readers will not have to scroll-down. Time is UTC-GMT. This is a continuation of: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/the-ongoing-saga-3-news-updates-tidbits-trivia/
Wednesday, 23 October 2013
Remember the PreOlympic Boycott of Russia: Olympic tickets, merchandise, vodka, etc. until the 30 Greenpeace hostages are released. Greece is as bad or worse than Russia and action should also be taken against them by European governments. Two wrongs do not make a right and Russia must be boycotted by everyone who cares about human rights, rule of law, or the environment.
Greece Skouries Mine:
“Mayor admits high arsenic levels in Halkidiki”
“One of the arguments put forward by opponents of the mine is that substances, such as arsenic, used in the mining process will poison locals’ water supply.” ekathimerini.com , Tuesday October 22, 2013 (20:38) See article here: http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_22/10/2013_524346
Reblogs of Important posts relevant to both the Greece Skouries Mine and to mining and oil and gas everywhere: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/23/gold-mining-projects-a-danger-to-human-rights-the-rule-of-law-and-ecological-integrity/
Despite the name this one is of global and of local importance. https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/23/a-few-words-about-the-skouries-area-in-chalkidiki/
“Dutch government asks sea law tribunal to release activists Posted:Mon, 21 Oct 2013 16:04:15 GMT
LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – The Dutch government on Monday asked the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea to order Russia to release 30 people detained last month during an environmental protest in the Arctic Sea.” http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/kY4jA3FRg-c/story01.htm Maybe we are missing something but it looks to us like this won’t get them out much more quickly, if at all. Didn’t Russia say they would be kept 2 months until trial? They have been kept over a month. So, discussions around November 3rd for provisional release won’t gain much time, if any.
Louisiana Sinkhole Update:
“Tuesday, Oct. 22 work-
Sinkhole Activity Code 2 – indicating no work is allowed directly on sinkhole, elevated due to seismic monitoring indicating trend of increased MEQ (micro-earthquake) activity near sinkhole/Oxy 3” http://assumptionla.wordpress.com/2013/10/22/200-p-m-update-from-the-office-of-conservation-3/
A reblog with our comments about new and old environmental threats from oil and gas industry in Louisiana. Also attempts by Governor Bobby Jindal to block a New Orleans levee board lawsuit against around 100 oil and gas companies. Pipelines, pollution, etc. destroy Louisiana wetlands which protect the City of New Orleans from storm surges and the worst of winds from hurricanes. https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/23/environmental-threats-in-louisiana-as-a-result-of-the-oil-and-gas-industry/ Jindal is apparently tied in with the Koch brothers, too. He is also reportedly a very mean-spirited person when it comes to the poor. Do a search of “Koch brothers” and Jindal and you will find some interesting information.
Tuesday, 22 October 2013
A Must Read For Those Concerned About Tar Sands and Pipelines and those who want to understand the how and why of the US government shutdown. In fact, for anyone interested in the environment or democracy. https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/22/building-keystone-xl-pipeline-could-mean-100-billion-in-profits-for-the-koch-brothers-new-report-reveals-democracy-the-environment-in-danger/ This also proves that you should indeed listen to older people. It was someone in their 90s who warned us about the Koch brothers.
Democracy is in Trouble in Greece too!
“Over 200 being probed over opposition to Skouries gold mine” ekathimerini.com , Saturday October 19, 2013 (16:37)
“A total of 12 case files involving 210 suspects have been created by authorities investigating opposition by Halkidiki residents to the gold mine run by Hellas Gold in Skouries, northern Greece…..
Authorities are treating the suspects in these three cases as having formed a criminal organization, the same charge that has been leveled against the leadership of the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party.
Sources say that three suspects already in custody are to be charged as the ringleaders of the alleged organization.
Two of the four people being held in custody over the February arson attack were released last week.” Read the entire article here (bold added for emphasis): http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_19/10/2013_523890
Those who saw the video which we posted around Oct. 13th (see below) about the Skouries case, may recall that the gentleman observed that almost the entire town was under threat of imprisonment.
Louisiana Sinkhole Will at least Double in Size
The Louisiana Sink Hole Bugle reported increased activity in the night of Sunday October 20 to Monday October 21: http://lasinkhole.wordpress.com/2013/10/21/things-fall-apart/
Thus, we should not be surprised that as reported by the Assumption Parish update site (and the Great Sink Hole Bugle), after having reportedly hooved up by 72 feet: “October 18, 2013 10:10 a.m. Update, Texas Brine advised that the tagging of Cavern 3 is at 4,022′ which is 72′ higher than last week’s tag, ” Cavern 3 sunk 75 feet: “October 21, 2013 1:30 p.m. Update, Texas Brine advised that the tagging of Cavern 3 is at 4,097′ which is 75′ lower than last week’s tag” http://assumptionla.wordpress.com/
October 15th 2013 flyover from the official Assumption Parish, Louisiana blog, which is actually a very interesting site on the day to day and minute to minute details of dealing with this catastrophe, from attempts to contain oil down to the local cats: http://assumptionla.wordpress.com
Last summer, Robert Traylor, a geologist at the Railroad Commission of Texas, the state’s oil and gas regulator, reportedly said, in relation to the sinkhole: “I hate to say, but it’s not an unusual event,…These things happen. In the oil business, a million things can go wrong, and they usually go wrong.” The entire article is here: “The Bayou Corne Disaster in Louisiana: Meet the Town That’s Being Swallowed by a Sinkhole” Global Research News, August 08, 2013 http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-bayou-corne-disaster-in-louisiana-meet-the-town-thats-being-swallowed-by-a-sinkhole/5345371
As reported in local media and picked back up by the Louisiana Sinkhole Bugle, Texas Brine officials (the apparent culprit in this affair) predict that the sinkhole will double in size (currently it is around 26 acres; 10.5 hectares). https://lasinkhole.wordpress.com/2013/10/02/may-double/
If you look at a Texas Brine’s August 22, 2013 “Factsheet” it says:
“As expected, the size of the sinkhole has grown from its original five acres to its present size of approximately 26 acres. The total area combined with the surrounding subsidence band is around 54 acres.”
http://www.texasbrine.com/response/TBC_Sinkhole_Characterization_Subsidence_Factsheet_FINAL-092613.pdf Apparently, hence the prediction that the additional subsidence will become part of the sinkhole and it will grow to at least 54 acres in size. Is there another basis for this prediction, we wonder, or may there be more subsidence on the edges as it grows ever larger.
The Louisiana Sinkhole Bugle blog spot appears close to the sinkhole epicenter. We hope that the sinkhole is growing away from them and others as claimed by Texas Brine. It is THE web site about the sinkhole. http://lasinkhole.wordpress.com/ Maybe they should change their name to the Great Louisiana Sinkhole Bungle, however, since it appears caused by a Texas Brine bungle. A catastrophic drill screwup. See:
“Mining Madness: 750-Foot-Deep Sinkhole Swallows Louisiana Town
The 24-acre cavity was caused by the collapse of an underground salt dome.” August 22, 2013, by Douglas Main
“The incident is one of the unforeseen effects of a rise in ‘injection’ mining in southern Louisiana, and throughout the South. Bayou Corne’s sinkhole was caused by this kind of mining, according to Louisiana state officials. In injection mining, water is injected into salt domes deep underneath the ground’s surface….The empty caverns that this practice creates may also then be filled with other materials, like wastewater or even radioactive materials.” http://www.takepart.com/article/2013/08/22/louisiana-town-destroyed-mining-induced-sinkhole-750-foot-deep-24-acre-wide Yes, that’s right: radioactive materials. Louisiana salt domes like this one have long been thought ideal candidates for radioactive wastes.
Monday 21 October, 2013
After writing the piece about the Majescor reverse stock split we noticed that it was pending approval by the exchange. So, those holding 10 stocks still have 10 stocks worth between one half cent and one penny each. However, sometime soon, they will have one stock worth initially between 5 and 10 cents. This will allow Majescor to sell more stock to get more money, hence devaluing the stock again. This is their second reverse split in less than 5 years. With much research we were still unable to ascertain when that would be. So, we hold back that post a bit longer. Ideally it will post a few days before the split takes effect as a warning. For Strateco we may also take a wait and see attitude. The Senate Recommendations in the Judge Joseph case will hopefully post late in the day today UTC or perhaps late in the day Port-au-Prince.
Returning to the topic of Greece from Sunday 13 Oct.(below): Please see our reblog of “Mining Interests Trump Local Democracy in Greece” https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/21/mining-interests-trump-local-democracy-in-greece/ Foretaste: In the birthplace of Aristotle democracy and the land are under threat from a Canadian mining company (as usual). Skouries forest in danger: the mining company “estimates it will need to clear cut 180 hectares of ancient forest and farmland in order to put the mine into full production, a process that is already underway.” “Heavy-handed police tactics, including night raids on family homes and allegations that police collected DNA samples illegally“. As discussed in the video Sunday 13 October (below), Couch potato people sitting at home on sofa had become activists by necessity. Some “activists” protecting their homeland kept in prison for about 6 months…NB: This is supposed to be Europe and not Russia. Will Putin let the Greenpeace activists out more quickly than Greece released these? The “activists” at Skouries didn’t go to trouble; trouble sought them out while they were sitting at home. And, sale of this mine breached European Union guidelines.
Sunday, 20 October 2013
Please see our new post: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/20/russia-strengthens-its-grip-on-uranium-supplies-to-fuel-its-arctic-conquest-rosatom-acquires-uranium-one-mines-in-kazakhstan-australia-the-us/ The most interesting thing in the new post is that Russia intends to use floating nuclear power stations to power its Arctic Gazprom offshore oil and gas operations! Majescor approved the predicted reverse stock split so that those who have 10 stocks worth between one half cent and one cent each will soon have one stock worth between 5 and 10 cents. This is at least the second time that Majescor has done a reverse stock split. We may also write something on their partner Strateco or we may wait for a pending ruling by Quebec. One news item which we saw in French but haven’t found elsewhere is that those Russian Greenpeace members who are not in jail are afraid to return to their homes.
Saturday, 19 October 2013
Please see our new post: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/19/proposed-black-hills-uranium-mining-and-treaty-violations/ It is a companion piece to our Columbus Day post below,(last Monday). The Judge Joseph post will update later in the day, UTC.
Friday, 18 October 2013
Please see our new post: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/no-safe-dose-of-ionizing-radiation-oak-ridge-institute-us-national-academy-of-sciences-beir/ Oh, we’ve had a brilliant idea! Those who are pro-nuclear can volunteer to keep all of that nuclear waste, which no one knows what to do with, in their own back yards (estates) and can order Fukushima rice at full price!
The Judge Joseph post was updated yesteday evening (UTC) https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/part-v-of-the-senate-inquest-report-on-the-troubling-death-of-judge-jean-serge-joseph-i-just-had-a-drink-with-them/
Thursday, 17 October 2013
Yesterday, October 16, 2013 was World Food Day:
“16 October 2013, FAO highlights importance of sustainable food systems on World Food Day: Sustainable food systems are a core element to defeating hunger and malnutrition, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). In a message on World Food Day, observed this Wednesday, FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva says healthy people depend on healthy food systems. ‘On this World Food Day, we have a simple but important message that can underpin our efforts to end hunger: Healthy people depend on healthy food systems. Efficient, well-managed sustainable food systems provide the diverse and nutritious diet we need to end hunger and malnutrition. At the same time, they protect our natural resources.'(28″) ‘Sustainable Food Systems for Food Security and Nutrition‘ is the theme for this year’s observance of World Food Day, which is celebrated annually on 16 October, the day when FAO was established in 1945. Dianne Penn, United Nations“. http://www.unmultimedia.org/radio/english/2013/10/fao-highlights-importance-of-sustainable-food-systems-on-world-food-day/
As we discussed in yesterday’s post “We are not Fennec Foxes”, the human world population is growing at the rate of 80 million people (births minus deaths) per year. These people require clean water and food, and water also is needed for the food to grow. On Monday October 14, 2013 UN FAO reported: “According to the latest figures, a total of 842 million people worldwide are chronically undernourished. Meanwhile, unsustainable models of development are degrading the natural environment, threatening ecosystems and biodiversity that will be needed for our future food supply.” http://www.unmultimedia.org/radio/english/2013/10/health-people-depend-on-healthy-food-systems-fao/
The planned destruction and pollution of more of tiny Haiti’s agricultural land and water in the context of proposed open pit mines, is especially worrisome, given Haiti’s large numbers of chronically undernourished people, and limited agricultural land. As well, proposed mining in the Dominican Republic could poison Haiti’s most important river, the Artibonite. We are pretty certain that fracking has occurred or is planned for Haiti. In yesterday’s post our focus was primarily on the increasing risks to clean water supply (quantity and quality) due to fracking by the oil and gas industry, mining, and drought. Nuclear energy also requires massive amounts of water during mining, during operation, and to cool wastes. And, of course, food and agriculture come into play because they require clean water. For those who have missed our post: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/16/we-are-not-fennec-foxes/ Although we had a different topic in mind for today, we received a new post in our inbox by http://nuclear-news.net/ who seems to work tirelessly to keep up with everything which everyone doesn’t want to know about nuclear but needs to know (unless ignorance is bliss, which we fear is not the case). It had a video (see below) of a young farmer stating that he won’t eat the food which he is supposed to sell to the public. He feels guilty about selling the food. Another man challenged government officials and asked them if they would eat Fukushima rice and if they would feed Fukushima rice to their children. The young man’s passionate cry cuts to the core of the tragedy that Japan and yes, the world is facing. No one knows what to do about Fukushima, which continues to leak into the ocean. The company knew it could happen but hoped it would not. Water from Fukushima is ultimately used by any salt water fish we eat and by all of us. Who knows how much radioactive waste the ocean is able to absorb? There are barrels of radioactive waste rusting in the oceans, already. Sellafield apparently continues to release radiation into the Irish sea. Various US nuclear reactors also are alleged to leak waste into the rivers; the reactor near Toronto, Canada into the Great Lakes. Almost certainly the soil of California which grows so much of America’s food was and will remain contaminated for some time due to Fukushima, as the contaminants take years to trickle down into the soil, presumably to contaminate the underlying aquifers. Yet, insanely countries continue to operate nuclear reactors, and yes, even the oldest operating nuclear reactor in the world sits along the Rhine in a very earthquake prone area. The oldest, built in the 1960s, Beznau, in Switzerland lies along the Rhine and in close proximity to at least two major earthquake fault areas. It is 60 km or a 52 minute drive due east of earthquake prone Basel, for instance. There is another major earthquake zone to the northeast. It is upriver, meaning that any spills would flow to Basel and on north up the Rhine. Concerns have been expressed about the French plant Fessenheim along the Rhine. Switzerland seems to have decided against new nuclear builds but insanely old ones carry on. However, some insane powers that be, such as in the UK, propose new ones. The Swiss, like the British are seeking a location for underground storage of the waste. And, of course, as everywhere, no one wants the stuff. A bit of research would most likely turn up a long list of nuclear power plants on or near fault-lines: In California, for instance, and near the US New Madrid fault. But, earthquakes are not required to cause nuclear accidents, as shown by Chernobyl and Three Mile Island.
Below, unfortunately, is just a sampling of the tragic news reported daily by http://enenews.com/ about the impacts of the Fukushima nuclear disaster:
“Rice grown nearby Fukushima plant cleared for sale — Farmer: ‘I would not dare eat it… We feel guilty about growing it and selling it” http://enenews.com/rice-grown-near-fukushima-plant-cleared-for-sale-farmer-i-would-not-dare-eat-it-myself-we-farmers-know-better-we-feel-guilt-about-growing-it-and-selling-it-video (Published: October 11th, 2013 at 1:03 am ET)
(Youtube: “Fukushima Farmers negotiate with Japanese government, June 6, 2013“, First posted “1 September 2013 by World Network of Children”, World Network of Children has many other videos about the impacts of Fukushima on children)
“Fukushima Farmer: Plutonium was detected ‘all over’ village 25 miles from plant — Professor: ‘Something terrible, dreadful happening’ — Mayor: Please don’t tell this to the residents (VIDEO)” October 12th, 2013 http://enenews.com/fukushima-farmer-plutonium-detected-all-village-professor-terrible-dreadful-happening-radiation-levels-high-mayor-please-dont-residents-video
“Kyoto U. Professor: If Japan had set limit below 20 mSv/yr, evacuation would have caused national-level crisis — ‘They believed that they had no choice but to expose residents to radiation” October 21, 2011 http://enenews.com/kyoto-professor-japan-set-limit-below-20-msvyr-evacuation-caused-national-level-crisis-believed-choice-expose-residents-radiation
(“Japan Exclusion Zone’s Lone Resident“, Jan. 27, 2012, CNN’s Kyung Lah reports. As this man notes that Fukushima was the third time a major nuclear accident occurred, Russia (Chernobyl), US (Three Mile Island) and Japan. He stays on to feed the animals and because it is his home).
“Fukushima Farmer: I’m full of rage — I refuse to leave and let go of this anger and grief — People in Tokyo don’t know what’s really happening here — I’m completely contaminated (VIDEO)” January 27, 2012 http://enenews.com/must-see-life-in-exclusion-zone-im-full-of-rage-i-refuse-to-leave-and-let-go-of-this-anger-and-grief-people-in-tokyo-dont-know-whats-really-happening-here-video
“NHK Special: Farmer in Fukushima no-go zone finds ‘certain abnormalities in his herd’ — Cancer Professor: ‘I wonder what discoloration is… study could be relevant to humans‘(VIDEO)” September 10, 2013 http://enenews.com/nhk-special-farmer-in-fukushima-no-go-zone-has-spotted-certain-abnormalities-in-his-herd-cancer-professor-i-wonder-what-the-discoloration-is-study-could-also-be-relevant-to-humans-vid
“Mayor: ‘We would end up dying, polluted to radiation all over’ if we returned to Fukushima (VIDEO)” February 7, 2013 http://enenews.com/mayor-dying-polluted-radiation-all-returned-fukushima-video
“Professor: We know all sorts of radioactive leaks are happening at Fukushima, it’s just not being documented — Situation is extremely unstable — Everybody’s just struggling to figure out how to deal with this (VIDEO)” October 5, 2013 http://enenews.com/professor-all-sorts-radioactive-leaks-happening-fukushima-being-documented-situation-extremely-unstable-everybodys-struggling-figure-deal-video
“Japan Journalist: Plutonium and uranium escaped Fukushima reactors as gas, it was a colossal 9,000ºF inside — Can’t be detected by a Geiger counter — Terrible things are looming for the children, they must be evacuated yet nothing is done… This is a ‘criminal nation’ — I am worried (VIDEO) Published: October 16th, 2013 at 10:52 pm ET http://enenews.com/japan-journalist-plutonium-and-uranium-escaped-from-fukushima-reactors-as-a-gas-temperature-was-9000of-cant-be-detected-by-a-geiger-counter-children-must-be-evacuated-yet-nothing-is-done-t
“Documentary: Plutonium detected ‘all around’ mountain in town 20 kilometers from Fukushima plant — ‘Everyone knows that… We use the water that comes from those mountains” (VIDEO) Published: October 16th, 2013 at 12:57 pm ET By ENE News http://enenews.com/documentary-plutonium-detected-all-around-mountain-in-town-20-kilometers-from-fukushima-plant-everyone-knows-that-we-use-the-water-that-comes-from-those-mountains-video (Link includes short quote from the documentary “Welcome to Fukushima (2013)” by Alain de Halleux, 11 March 2013 (Belgium). Trailer and film available on youtube but seem to be only in French).
In the context of food security and water supply we must also point out over 7 acres (29,947 sq meter) of wheat field ruined by a leaking oil pipeline in North Dakota. The wheat had “disintegrated, you wouldn’t have known it was a wheat plant.” See:
“In remote field, North Dakota suffers first big oil spill
Posted: Thu, 10 Oct 2013 20:16:56 GMT
NEW YORK (Reuters) – A Tesoro Logistics LP pipeline has spilled more than 20,000 barrels of crude oil into a rural North Dakota field, the biggest leak in the state since it became a major U.S. producer.” http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/csS_9i78OuM/story01.htm
In the context of water supply and mining:
In Niger where France’s Areva mines for uranium, it is reported that
they “don’t have enough drinking water while the company pumps 20 million cubic meters of water each year for free.“
“Thousands protest against Areva in Niger mining town
Posted: Sat, 12 Oct 2013 15:21:08 -0400
* Niger auditing Areva mines to cut costs, increase revenue” http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/basicmaterialsNews/~3/UYdgB16uqDE/niger-areva-protest-idUSL6N0I20H220131012
Wednesday 16 October 2013
Judge Joseph post was updated: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/part-v-of-the-senate-inquest-report-on-the-troubling-death-of-judge-jean-serge-joseph-i-just-had-a-drink-with-them/ Since the Senate referred to a fortress of lies by the executive (Martelly and Lamothe) we took a moment to examine why President Martelly was scared to go upstairs in Haiti’s Citadelle, as a footnote. All aid needs to be cut to Haiti’s government.
We have a new post: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/16/we-are-not-fennec-foxes/ (We let people be surprised)
We reblogged a post which discusses a Greenpeace web site against UK fracking but wonders why they don’t take a stand regarding nuclear waste disposal: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/your-move-if-wishes-were-horses-greenpeace-would-be-actively-opposing-nukiller/
A few interesting Greenpeace happenings regarding the Arctic Hostages:
October 13, 2013
14.30 – Greenpeace International Executive Director, Kumi Naidoo, holds a press conference about the Arctic 30 in Reykjavik, Iceland as part of the Arctic Circle Conference:
“I put it to this conference that … the two journalists and 28 activists that are imprisoned in Murmansk were acting in the best interests of all of humanity, and I wanted to ask this conference to agree with President Putin and myself when we say that these activists are not pirates, that they were acting in the public interest, and that they should be released immediately.”
06.00 – Greenpeace activists from Italy and Eastern Europe protest at the Barcolana Autumn Cup Regatta in Trieste against the competition’s main sponsor, Gazprom.
October 11, 2013
13.47 – President Putin’s human rights advisor urges prosecutors to drop the piracy charges:
‘These charges are laughable because there isn’t the slightest justification for accusing the crew of the Arctic Sunrise of piracy,’ Mikhail Fedotov said in an interview in Moscow.
13.00 – Greenpeace International Executive Director Kumi Naidoo comments on the latest developments in Murmansk:
“Those 30 brave men and women are in jail on trumped up charges, they are prisoners of conscience. They are there not because of what they did but because of what they represent. They are there not because of Russian law but because they made a stand against vested interests. Greenpeace does not think it is above the law, but those campaigners are not pirates, even President Putin says so, and every day they remain behind bars is an affront to the basic principles of justice.”
10.20 – The appeal to release freelance videographer Kieron Bryan on bail is rejected by the Regional Court of Murmansk.
10.00 – Protests are held outside of the Albertina Museum in Vienna where an exhibition of the Gazprom Collection is being shown.
October 05, 2013
A global Emergency Day of Solidarity to free the Arctic 30 (#freethearctic30). Thousands of people engaging in 220 solidarity events in 48 countries.
These are just a few events from: http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/news/features/From-peaceful-action-to-dramatic-seizure-a-timeline-of-events-since-the-Arctic-Sunrise-took-action-September-18-CET/
Tuesday, 15 October 2013
Our new post is delayed. Meanwhile please see the new reblogs: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/why-has-the-wettest-place-in-england-not-got-enough-freshwater/ https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/wasdale-show-says-no-again/ https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/the-river-ribble-birthing-the-nuclear-nightmare-1st-installment-of-the-springfields-archive/
Judge Joseph post was updated on Sunday 13 October. We learn that a market lady counted an 18 car presidential motorcade near Gary Lissade’s law firm during the time that the meeting is said to have occurred with Judge Joseph. This is yet another indication that President Martelly and others are lying. https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/part-v-of-the-senate-inquest-report-on-the-troubling-death-of-judge-jean-serge-joseph-i-just-had-a-drink-with-them/
Monday, 14 October 2013, Native American Day (South Dakota)
“In 1492 Christopher Columbus sailed from Spain on his first voyage with three ships, the Niña, the Pinta, and the flag ship, Santa Maria, seeking a direct route to Asia. On 12 October 1492 Columbus reached an island in the Bahamas, an event long regarded by Europeans as the ‘discovery’ of America. This island was called Guanahani by the Lucayan, and San Salvador by the Spanish….The Bahamas held little interest to the Spanish except as a source of slave labor. Nearly the entire population of Lucayan (almost 40,000 people total) were transported to other islands as laborers over the next 30 years. When the Spanish decided to remove the remaining Lucayans to Hispaniola [Haiti; Dominican Republic] in 1520, they could find only eleven. The islands remained abandoned and depopulated for 130 years afterwards. With no gold to be found, and the population removed, the Spanish effectively abandoned the Bahamas.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Bahamas
In December 1511, Hispaniola (Haiti-Dominican Republic), less than 20 years after Columbus’ “discovery” of the “New World”, “a Dominican preacher Father Fray Antonio de Montesinos preached a fiery sermon that implicated the colonists in the genocide of the native peoples:…’Tell me by what right of justice do you hold these Indians in such a cruel and horrible servitude? On what authority have you waged such detestable wars against these people who dealt quietly and peacefully on their own lands? Wars in which you have destroyed such an infinite number of them by homicides and slaughters never heard of before. Why do you keep them so oppressed and exhausted, without giving them enough to eat or curing them of the sicknesses they incur from the excessive labor you give them, and they die, or rather you kill them, in order to extract and acquire gold every day.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bartolomé_de_las_Casas http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonio_de_Montesinos
Map of Columbus’ Voyages (Viajes de colon, Phirosiberia derivative work)
Although initially disagreeing with Montesinos, Bartolomé de las Casas, changed his mind and in 1542, half a century after conquest, he wrote the following work, first published in 1552 and entitled “A Brief Account of the Destruction of the Indies / Or, a faithful Narrative of the Horrid and Unexampled Massacres, Butcheries, and all manner of Cruelties, that Hell and Malice could invent, committed by the Popish Spanish Party on the inhabitants of West-India, Together With the Devastations of several Kingdoms in America by Fire and Sword, for the space of Forty and Two Years, from the time of its first Discovery by them.”:
“The Cruelties of the Spaniards Committed in America: America was discovered and found in 1492 AD and the following year inhabited by the Spanish, and afterward a multitude of them travelled there from Spain over the course of 49 years. Their first attempt was on Hispaniola, which indeed has a most fertile soil….which we found so well populated with Natives….Now the ultimate end and scope that incited the Spaniards to endeavor the Extirpation and Desolation of this People, was Gold only;….Finally, in one word, their Ambition and Avarice, of which the heart of Man never entertained greater, and the vast Wealth of those Regions; the Humility and Patience of the Inhabitants (which made their approach to these Lands more facile and easy) did much promote the business….the Spaniards never received any injury from the Indians, but that they rather reverenced them as Persons descended from Heaven, until that they were compelled to take up Arms, provoked thereunto by repeated Injuries, violent Torments, and injust Butcheries.”
“Of the Island Hispaniola [Modern-day Haiti-Dominican Republic]:
…they sent the Males to the Mines to dig and bring away the Gold, which is an intollerable labor; but the Women they made use of to Manure and Till [farm] the ground, which is a toil most irksome even to Men of the strongest and most robust constitutions, allowing them no other food but Herbage…The Men died in Mines, hunger starved and oppressed with labor….A Second Kingdom was named Marien, where there is ….[a] Plain or open Country toward the North, more fertile and large than the kingdom of Portugal;…it abounds with Mountains, and is rich in Mines of Gold and Orichalcum. Orichalcum, a kind of Copper Metal mixt with Gold;” By Bartolomé de las Casas. English transln, London, R. Hewson, 1689 http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/20321 [We have modernized the English in spots]
Marien, discussed above, corresponds to the area currently proposed in Haiti for gold and copper mining. It is the fertile Northern Plains of Haiti. As in this historical case, the proposed mines would leave the Haitians starving and in desolation because they are surface mines which will occupy precious agricultural land, as well as poisoning the rivers and ground water. In fact, one of the mining companies there calls itself “Marien Mining”. According to Claude Prepetit (ca 2000), of Haiti’s Bureau of Mines (BME), by 1502 all of the provinces of Hispaniola, in today’s Haiti, paid the Spanish an annual tribute in cotton, foodstuffs or gold. During this period, the gold mines made the fortune of the colony and that of Spain. In this period, ruins, instruments and some deposits of iron and copper were mentioned near Terre Neuve [i.e. the area of the SEDREN, FCDH Mine], indicating mining and metallurgy, probably carried out by the Spanish. By 1545 the mines were almost exhausted, the Indians were dying off more and more, and the Spanish didn’t want to practice agriculture or work in the mines, which led to a rapid decline of Hispaniola. http://www.bme.gouv.ht/mines/M%E9mento1.rtf
Don’t let the current Haitian government or anyone else fool you about modern mining either. There was prehistoric mining thousands of years ago during the Bronze Age. http://www.nuigalway.ie/ross_island/prehistoricmine.htm The Romans had mines in Spain, over a thousand years before Columbus, and had really sophisticated mining techniques. These included open pit (open cast), underground, and even “mountaintop removal”. After they were done digging underground, they removed the supportive pilings and told everyone to run for it, as the mountain collapsed. The workers in Roman Spain, as in Spanish Hispaniola, were mostly slaves, so if some got killed in the collapse they didn’t care. Pliny the Elder documented Roman mining techniques in Spain in a work published ca 77 to 79 AD. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_History_(Pliny) So, when the Spaniards arrived in Haiti, they would have known a lot about mining. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Las_Médulas The main thing which has changed in all of these years is that the quality of the ore has steadily declined throughout the world, meaning that many more tonnes of waste rock must be moved for the same amount of metals. We also know much more about the dangers to the miners and to the environment. We especially know the dangers of uranium, thorium, radium, and also lead, which were apparently not known in Roman times. It is interesting that only in mining is 0.5% an adequate grade and 2% pretty good. That means, in the first instance, that 99.5% would be waste and in the second instance that 98% would be waste (minus any other low grade products).
Almost 400 years later after Columbus:
“The Black Hills Gold Rush took place in Dakota Territory in the United States. It began in 1874 following the Custer Expedition and reached a peak in 1876-77.”
“The Custer Fight” by Charles Marion Russell, 1903
(Battle of the Little Big Horn – Custer’s last stand: June 25-26, 1876)
“Prior to the Gold Rush, the Black Hills were used by Native Americans (primarily bands of Sioux but others also ranged through the area). The United States government recognized the Black Hills as belonging to the Sioux by the Treaty of Laramie in 1868. Despite being within Indian territory, and therefore off-limits, white Americans were increasingly interested in the gold-mining possibilities of the Black Hills…. The first arrivals were a force of one thousand men led by George Armstrong Custer to investigate reports that the area contained gold, even though the land was owned by the Sioux. They found small amounts of gold in present day Custer, South Dakota, and looked for better paying locations. They moved north, establishing the towns of Hill City, Sheridan, and Pactola. …. On April 9, 1876 Fred and Moses Manuel, Hank Harney and Alex Engh discovered a gold outcropping near Lead, South Dakota; they claimed their find and named it the Homestake. …. It was here that men would produce ten percent of the world’s gold supply over the next one hundred and twenty five years….” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Hills_Gold_Rush (references at link; bold added)
After the gold rush it was seen fit to poison the Natives (and non-Natives) of the Black Hills of South Dakota with open pit (open cast) uranium mines, which have yet to be cleaned up. Although South Dakota is the only state which celebrates Native American Day rather than Columbus Day, they appear to currently be trying to force more uranium mines upon the area of the Black Hills, despite arguments by Natives that it is sacred land; despite arguments by Natives and non-Natives alike that it may poison aquifers and increase water-shortages in an already semi-arid region. Hearings against Canadian based Power-tech Uranium (proposed Dewey Burdock ISL Mine) continue both at the state and federal level, even though this violates the Treaty of Fort Laramie, as well as various US and International laws pertaining to indigenous people’s rights. Strangely, the proposed mine is for Custer and Fall River Counties, South Dakota!
One week ago the State of South Dakota released the following statement. On this same day state-level water permit hearings were scheduled to continue about the proposed Power-tech mine, but were postponed due to a blizzard.
“FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, October 7, 2013
CONTACT: JR LaPlante (605) 773-3415
Celebrate Native American Day in South Dakota
PIERRE, S.D. – In 1989 the South Dakota Legislature adopted legislation proposed by Governor George S. Mickelson to change Columbus Day to Native American Day. On this day, we remember great Native American leaders who contributed much to the history of the State of South Dakota.
South Dakota shares its borders with nine federally recognized tribes; including the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, Crow Creek Sioux Tribe, Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe, Lower Brule Sioux Tribe, Oglala Sioux Tribe, Rosebud Sioux Tribe, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate, and Yankton Sioux Tribe. Each tribe and its subdivisions has an unique history that contributes to the diversity of our state. Approximately 9 percent of South Dakota’s population is Native American according to 2010 census data, and more than 100,000 South Dakotans are also enrolled tribal members. The Department of Tribal Relations encourages all South Dakotans to celebrate Native American Day in South Dakota by learning about the traditions and culture of the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people.” http://news.sd.gov/newsitem.aspx?id=15259 How about respecting their rights and their land? The South Dakota Native Americans live in what are amongst the top-ten poorest counties in the US. Will this uranium mining create jobs? Very few. And, even if yes, you cannot eat or drink money; money cannot buy good health: “When the last tree is cut, the last fish is caught, and the last river is polluted; when to breathe the air is sickening, you will realize, too late, that wealth is not in bank accounts and that you can’t eat money.” Alanis Obomsawin, an Abenaki from the Odanak reserve. http://quoteinvestigator.com/2011/10/20/last-tree-cut/
For those who think that Columbus Day is an Italian-American Holiday, the Italian-American holiday is St. Joseph’s Day (March 19), which can be celebrated in conjunction with Irish St. Patrick’s day (March 17). Besides, Italian citizenship is by blood so if a National Holiday is so important then there is the option of returning back to Italy, and giving your land back to Native Americans. And, speaking of immigration. Why is the US continuing to allow immigration from outside of the Americas when it cannot offer full employment to either the original people (Native Americans) or to the earliest migrants? And, shouldn’t Native Americans determine who is allowed to immigrate? The reason we say outside the Americas is that the “Mexican” immigrants who are generally indigenous peoples from Central America and Mexico, and often mining refugees, may well have their ancestral roots in the Mississippi Valley mound-building cultures. The reason, of course, for continued immigration is that the US was largely built on an immigration pyramid scheme and has speeded that process up, which has left behind most of the Native Americans, as well as increasingly leaving behind the earlier waves of immigration. The pyramid scheme of immigration – religion of population growth is now preached constantly in the media, whereas it is both environmentally, and by definition, unsustainable. Environmentalists or others who dare speak the truth about this are labeled with all sorts of nasty names.
In biological sciences there is a concept called “carrying capacity” of the land. This applies to all animals, including humans. Depending on the size of the country and the size of population growth (whether through births or migration), the unsustainability is sometimes visible sooner, sometimes later. There must be a shift from unsustainable growth economies based on quantity to something new based on both quality and sustainability. If not, humans as well as all other animals are doomed. Besides zero population growth, this must include a shift away from extraction-based economies which destroy precious trees, agricultural land and water and create refugees. Look at google earth and see how little green there is and get worried. Can that little bit of green afford to be turned into open pit mines or housing?
Sunday, 13 October 2013
Polar Bear At Vatican City
© Francesco Alesi / Greenpeace (21 Jun 2012)
A polar bear wanders Vatican City to demand immediate global action to protect the Arctic from destructive oil drilling. http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/multimedia/slideshows/ThePolarBearademandimmediateactiontoprotecttheArctic/Polar-Bear-At-Vatican-City/ We prefer the polar bear costume demonstrations.
As you will see below BBC said “stormed” for dramatic effect. Whereas they simply climbed up a ladder on the side of the an oil rig! They were arrested for trespassing.
“Why Clash guitarist Simonon stormed rig for Greenpeace”
10 October 2013 Last updated at 23:46 BST
The Clash and Gorillaz musician Paul Simonon has spoken for the first time about why he boarded an Arctic oil rig for Greenpeace in 2011.
He was arrested and spent two weeks in jail in Greenland.
He has spoken to Newsnight’s Emily Maitlis as 30 Greenpeace activists are held in Russia after a similar protest on an Arctic oil rig owned by Gazprom.” http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24484262
Criminalisation of Activism
From “Gold Mining in Greece, Stories of Resistance and Repression” by Theodoros Chronopoulos https://www.facebook.com/events/163715900486791/
“Under the pretext of a severe financial crisis Greece is reasserting its investor-friendly profile by opening up all goldmines across the country without regard to the threats that mining poses to the environment and to people’s livelihoods. Foreign investors are particularly welcome: fast track processes; tax relief; exception from damages; easy money; no royalties; no problems.
But the true picture is not so rosy! Sham public consultations, questionable deals designed to advance specific corporate interests and the slow but steady destruction of the environment have been met with resistance. The struggle to oppose Eldorado Gold’s plans to create an enormous open pit mine on Mount Kakavos and within the ancient forest of Skouries has succeeded in capturing people’s imagination and inspiring waves of solidarity across the country.
While organising their long campaign affected communities have learned a lot about Greek law; geology; environmental science; and the technologies of extraction. As they did so, they begun to ask questions about development, participation, human rights and the public interest. Their questions were answered by the riot police.
Now the people from Skouries are bringing this discussion to London. Lazaros Toskas, member of the Struggle Coordinating Committee of Megali Panagia, will share stories of resistance and repression, of mining, rights and the politics of development .” https://www.facebook.com/events/163715900486791/ [September 2013] (bold added for emphasis)
[See video of event below; We have yet to see entire video so make no guarantees, but it appears good; you can skip the first 5 minutes; then there is an excellent 15 minute movie; then testimony starts]
These people did not seek out protest as the Greenpeace activists did, rather the trouble came to them in the form of a mining company, and they only want to protect their homeland and livelihoods.
Things are getting out of hand and the Greek government is out to silence and penalise the movement against gold-mining. 55 people in addition to the those already charged have been summoned to appear in front of investigative judges.” https://www.facebook.com/events/163715900486791/ [posted around 12 october 2013] (bold added for emphasis)
27 anti-goldmine activists in the area of Chalkidiki are charged with the same accusation as the Golden Dawn: formation of a criminal organisation. Of course no weapons or ammunition have been found in their possession, nor have they been laundering money and blackmailing for cash as the Nazi gang. Without any specific action being linked with specific persons in the prosecutor’s call, the activists are accused for ‘through illegal means aiming to prevent or postpone mining or other activity by the company Hellas Gold [a subsidiary of Canadian company Eldorado] in the area of Skouries’. Without documenting the first, the accent is put on the latter, thus entering the waters of criminalising a political position which is the opposition to the gold mine. There’s no ‘evidence’ on these 27 individuals other than having participated in anti-mine rallies and having publicly expressed their opinion against the mines. The 3,500 pages of the case file contain recorded phone conversations of the activists containing encouragement to other individuals to join the anti-mine movement. Golden Dawn leaders were interrogated in the courts. The activists will be interrogated in the Thessaloniki police Headquarters as if they were dangerous criminals. No investigation has been called on well documented police abuses against the inhabitants in the area, or on the security of the company illegally fencing public land. Four activists are already imprisoned before trial for several months.” https://www.facebook.com/events/163715900486791/ [posted around 1 october 2013] (bold added for emphasis)
Saturday 12 October 2013
We have a new Judge Joseph post: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/part-v-of-the-senate-inquest-report-on-the-troubling-death-of-judge-jean-serge-joseph-i-just-had-a-drink-with-them/ Things have started picking up in the Senate Report. We have learned that Judge Joseph did indeed say that he had something to drink at the meeting, which he said occurred with Haiti’s President Martelly and Prime Minister Lamothe (and which they deny). This reopens the possibility of his having been poisoned at the meeting. Furthermore we hear about President Martelly allegedly stopping the Judge on a major highway and threatening him. Presidential Security Guards were in the back of Martelly’s vehicle and said to have taken pictures. One Presidential Security officer mysteriously dropped dead right after a hearing of presidential security agents was requested by the Senate Committee. Was he one of the three who witnessed Martelly intimidating Judge Joseph? Some of his symptoms were the same as Judge Joseph’s.
A Reminder, in case you are not too far away, the Wasdale Head Shepherds Meet and Show starts today at 10am and lasts all day until 18:00: “The Heart of The Wasdale Head Show and Shepherds Meet are The Herdwick Sheep.” http://www.wasdaleheadshow.co.uk/ More on this area, endangered by a proposed nuclear waste dump, is below and in yesterday’s update.
Herdwick Ewe, Photo by hollidaypics, creative commons via Wikimedia
To conserve this area and the traditional Herdwick flocks, Beatrix Potter used royalties from her books like “Peter Rabbit” to buy up 4,000 acres (16km2) which she gave to the National Trust for safekeeping, along with book royalties and a large sum of money. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herdwick
She did not give land to make a nuclear waste dump! Furthermore, “Cumbrians have said No repeatedly to a geological dump under this land from Morecambe Bay to the Solway”. The dump will be disruptive to the surface, as well.
From: “Radiation Free Lakeland: Preventing the Lake District from becoming a nuclear sacrifice zone. The government is looking to bury high level nuclear waste in a hole deeper than Scafell is high and bigger than the City of Carlisle. No Thanks!
Letter to Ed Davey Opposing Nuke Dump – Come along and Sign at Wasdale Show tomorrow!
By mariannewildart on October 11, 2013
To the Department of Energy and Climate Change
Dear Ed Davey,
Cumbrians have said No repeatedly to a geological dump under this land from Morecambe Bay to the Solway. The new consultation announced by DECC is a narrowly focused set of questions with the aim of achieving a Yes response to a ‘geological disposal facility’ as quickly as possible by scrapping the rights of host communities to say NO. The consultation aims to give the few people on the Allerdale and Copeland Borough Council Executive the sole right to make the decision. Cumbrians have already said no repeatedly to becoming the nuclear dumping ground for existing and future radioactive wastes taken out of reactor cores and buried under Cumbria’s leaky geology.
I am not a willing volunteer for the geological dumping of nuclear waste in Cumbria and my representative County council has already said NO.
Those who cannot go to the Wasdale Show may wish to send an email or letter to the following addresses. If you are not from Cumbria then you can complain, as well. Presumably it counts most for people from the UK to write, but it cannot hurt to write in solidarity from elsewhere.
Office address and general enquiries
3 Whitehall Place
Video “How Peter Rabbit Saved the Lake District“. It is for English as a second language (ESL) learners so is slow, but a relevant video. He says that Herdwick sheep are ugly. We say, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.
“In the latter half of her life, the children’s author Beatrix Potter was involved with keeping and breeding Herdwicks, even acting as president of the breed association for a time. Between 1930 and 1938 she won a number of prizes for Herdwick ewes at shows across Cumbria. Upon her death in 1943, she bequeathed fifteen farms – approximately a total sum of 4,000 acres (16 km²) – to the National Trust, and per her instructions all continue to graze Herdwick flocks.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herdwick (references at link)
Herdwick Tups, photo by Mark Fosh from Watford, UK (Sheepish)
“The Herdwick is a breed of domestic sheep native to the Lake District of Cumbria in North West England. The name “Herdwick” is derived from the Old Norse herdvyck, meaning sheep pasture. … Herdwicks are prized for their robust health, their ability to live solely on forage, and their tendency to be territorial and not to stray over the difficult upland terrain of the Lake District. It is considered that up to 99% of all Herdwick sheep are commercially farmed in the central and western Lake District. The wool quality of a Herdwick has unique qualities relating to durability….They have been known to survive under a blanket of snow for three days… Severely threatened by the 2001 outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in England and Wales, the breed has survived due to the intent to preserve this unique animal as a crucial part of traditional Lakeland agriculture. Still far less in number than most commercial breeds, Herdwicks survive largely due to farming subsidies and the aid of the British National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty…..The root word of the breed’s name, herdvyck, “sheep pasture”, is recorded in documents dating back to the 12th century. The origin of the breed itself is unknown, but the most common theory is that the ancestors of Herdwick sheep were introduced by early Norse settlers. ….For centuries, the husbandry of Herdwick sheep has been a large factor in shaping the culture and terrain of the Lake District….the ubiquitous dry stone walls of the valleys were built to protect grazing land and to confine livestock. Linguistically, many words of Lakeland speech relate to sheep husbandry. The ancient Yan Tan Tethera counting system for sheep is a survival of Brittonic counting systems.……
In the modern era, the main industry of the Lake District has shifted from agriculture to tourism. …. the National Trust…. now acts as a wool merchant itself, thus being able to bargain for better prices directly with the British Wool Marketing Board and operate a Herdwick wool trademark. …. 95% of all 50,000 or so Herdwicks live within 14 miles of Coniston, Cumbria, and this makes them particularly vulnerable to outbreaks of disease. The outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in 2001 led to the destruction of many flocks, and to fears for the survival both of the breed and of the typical Lakeland sheep farming industry. Of the estimated 100,000 Herdwick sheep present before the outbreak, a full 25% were lost. They were not easily replaceable because long-standing herds are hefted so the introduction of new stock to the fells would have required extensive fencing. The call for vaccination rather than culling to preserve what is considered a part of the traditional identity of the fells and moors was led by parties – such as the Duke of Westminster, Earl Peel, Lord Barnard and Lord Lonsdale – who wished to save the hill sheep on their lands. Many Lake District residents saw the breed as an indispensable icon of the region. Longtime resident and writer for The Guardian A. Harry Griffin expressed this feeling:’…,the little grey Herdwick sheep typify the Lakeland. If they and their shepherds go, that is the end of the Lakeland where I have climbed, walked, skied and skated for nearly 80 years; of the Lakeland I have written about nearly all my life.…. ” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herdwick (references at link)
“Protected status for Lakeland Herdwick sheep”
16 May 2013 Last updated at 13:30 GMT
“A rare breed of Cumbrian sheep has been awarded protected status putting it in the same category as Champagne, Cornish pasties and Melton Mowbray pies. Lakeland Herdwick sheep were first recognised as a breed in the 1790s and are now bred on 120 hill farms in the central and western Lake District. A bid for Protected Designation of Origin status was made by the Herdwick Sheep Breeders’ Association. The European Commission has now approved the application. Herdwicks, which often graze at heights of about 3,000ft (915 metres), are recognised as one of the hardiest British sheep breeds…. the estimated 50,000 animals … They were a favourite of Peter Rabbit creator Beatrix Potter, who kept her own herds…When she died she bequeathed 15 farms, covering almost 4,000 acres, to the National Trust on the understanding they were allowed to continue to breed Herdwicks. It has taken 10 years for protected status to be granted……” (bold added) Read Full Article here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-cumbria-22556372
Governments seem to offer protection with one hand and take it away with the other hand! This area is a National Park, too.
This does not seem to have been properly covered by non-Russian media:
“Human Rights Council to appeal to Russian president over Greenpeace piracy charges – newspaper, 10 October, 11:29
Members of the Russian President’s Human Rights Council intend to ask President Vladimir Putin on October 11 about a possible legal appraisal of the charges brought against the Greenpeace environmentalists, Kommersant wrote on Thursday. ‘The Arctic Sunrise situation may be discussed at the Friday meeting. If this decision is made, members of the Council’s standing commission for human rights abroad or standing commission for case law or standing commission for environmental law will deal with it,’ Council Chairman Mikhail Fedotov told the newspaper. In his opinion, prosecutors should also intervene over the piracy accusations.” Read the rest here: http://voiceofrussia. com/news/2013_10_10/Human-Rights-Council-to-appeal-to-Russian-president-over-Greenpeace-piracy-charges-newspaper-3178/
Fukushima: How do people continue to push new nuclear?
August 2013, BBC news video. At least 400 tonnes per day of water used to cool the reactor!
Radiation levels near Japan’s damaged Fukushima reactor hit two-year high Posted:Thu, 10 Oct 2013 04:40:31 GMT
TOKYO (Reuters) – Radiation levels in seawater just outside one of the damaged Fukushima reactors spiked this week to the highest level in two years, the operator of the crippled Japanese nuclear plant said on Thursday. Story here: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/vxUI4VA4SAA/story01.htm From the above article: “Workers are injecting chemicals to harden the ground on the seaside of the Fukushima reactor buildings to prevent contaminated water from flowing out to the ocean. The pressure from pumping chemicals into the ground pushed some contaminated soil out into the port area, the spokesman said.”
“Latest leak at Japan’s Fukushima plant contaminates six workers Posted:Wed, 09 Oct 2013 07:59:40 GMT
TOKYO (Reuters) – Six workers at Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant were exposed to a leak of highly radioactive water on Wednesday, the latest in a string of mishaps the country’s nuclear watchdog has attributed to carelessness, saying they could have been avoided“. Story here: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/sIxry3KVrCk/story01.htm
“Japan LDP to make proposals on Tepco this month; breakup an option Posted: Wed, 09 Oct 2013 11:14:38 GMT
TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s ruling party will make proposals this month on how to handle the embattled operator of the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant, including the possible break-up of the giant utility, a senior party policymaker said on Wednesday.” Story here: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/33Da24zZMeQ/story01.htm According to the above story, “At the Fukushima plant, some 800 tons of groundwater flow into the basements of the wrecked reactor buildings every day, mixing with highly radioactive water used to cool melted fuel rods. After months of denials, Tepco in July admitted contaminated water was flowing into the nearby Pacific Ocean. It also since found that 300 tons of highly radioactive water had leaked from one of hundreds of hastily-built storage tanks. Last week, Tepco said another 430 liters of water overflowed from another tank.”
“What have we learned from Fukushima?”
By Rupert Wingfield-Hayes1 October 2013 Last updated at 00:06 GMT
“Rupert Wingfield-Hayes recently made a second trip inside the crippled plant at Fukushima: Since moving to Japan in 2012, I have reported on the aftermath of the Fukushima nuclear disaster – speaking to experts, visiting the site and watching the clean-up. For the Editors, a programme which sets out to ask challenging questions, I consider what I have learned…. For me, this is the most revealing and shocking part of the Fukushima story. When the earthquake and tsunami hit on 11 March 2011 there was no plan for how to deal with such a large and complex disaster. How was this allowed to happen? Prof Kurokawa blames what he calls ‘regulatory capture’, a process by which the nuclear power industry ‘captured’ the bureaucracy that was supposed to regulate it. Put crudely, the ‘poachers’ and the ‘gamekeepers’ were far too close. Many senior bureaucrats from Japan’s Nuclear Industry Safety Agency would take lucrative jobs in the nuclear industry after leaving government. The result was a nuclear industry imbued with a culture of arrogance, secrecy and complacency. Lessons learned after Chernobyl and Three Mile Island in the US were not implemented here. When disaster struck, Japan was woefully ill-prepared….“. Read the story here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24332346
Note regarding the Hupacasath suit. From our understanding they are moving forward with the suit, but are most likely still collecting money to pay the court fees charged by the Canadian government. You may find more updated information at the links given at our post (see below). We will update if we find out additional information.
Friday, 11 October 2013 (Russia; Wasdale Sheep; Sellafield)
Please see our new post and remember to donate before it’s too late. Three Canadian Dollars minimum. The Harper government and his mining and oil companies cause so much grief throughout the world, just thumbing your nose at him is worth more than $3. They are at $206,149 of $300,000 needed urgently. The Hupacasath seem to have only 300 members so they need all the help they can get. This does not go through us, we are only providing information and link: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/10/hupacasath-first-nation-urgent-appeal/
Russia at the Crossroads
The Greenpeace case really represents a crossroads for the Russian government and by extension the Russian people, along with the rest of the world. Will Russia continue to look backwards to its never-ending past of human rights abuses or will Russia look forwards to a new age? Will President Putin step forward to lead Russia into a golden age of peace and justice? It may seem unlikely but not more unlikely than a former KGB officer converting to Christianity and wrapping himself in the mantle of defender of the Orthodox faith. This last proves that President Putin is willing to change and grow, but are other elements of the Russian government willing to do so? He is able but is he willing? President Putin was on the verge of being nominated for a well-deserved Noble Peace award for Syria, will he let that honour be scuttled by human rights abuses within Russia? Let’s say it like it is, keeping people without bail on false charges constitutes human rights abuses. There are also allegations of poor prison conditions. Unfortunately, the Greenpeace case is not unique in this regard.
President Clinton recently remarked that Russia continues to remain top in mathematics and sciences and could do more in this area rather than being so dependent upon resource extraction. During the “Cold War” at least some western universities required either Russian or German language. Why? In order to read the scientific literature because Russia and Germany were tops in the hard sciences. So why is Russia dependent upon “primitive accumulation” of resource extraction, destroying its environment in the meantime, when it might lead the world into a new age of green technology by putting its people to work in this area?
The Greenpeace case is also a crossroads for us all. Do we care enough about our own freedom to take part in a pre-Russian Olympic boycott, and if required complete boycott of Russian Olympics and Russian products, while we wait to see if Russian officials will come to their senses? It is also a call for Greenpeace and others to look more carefully at cost-benefit in the framework of calls for social justice. The prison time for the activists will have been well-spent whatever the outcome. Why? Because it offers Russia an opportunity to change. However, if Russia continues to refuse to release the prisoners it will make everyone reflect upon Russia’s never-ending saga of human rights abuses, even more than on the fate of the Arctic.
While it was nice that the President of Greenpeace offers himself as security in exchange for the others, we had in mind whoever was responsible for updating Greenpeace about military maneuvers in the Arctic region; general geopolitics and whoever chose the crew. Did it make sense to send a Dutch ship with an American pilot to the protest a Russian oil rig, given that both of these countries were already in the midst of some conflicts with Russia? Was it fair to the other activists from countries that generally keep their noses out of trouble? Greenpeace reportedly has about 2,500 workers. One or a handful of workers was responsible for these things, and not the president. While one should not cry over spilt milk we do hope that this person or persons has been fired and would not mind seeing them sent to a Siberian gulag for life, for unthinkingly sending others into harms way, with no warning. However, it remains shocking that the Russian government would act so petty by punishing innocent people for its conflicts with various governments.
The crazy irony, however, is that governments, such as the USA and Canada, who are run by a powerful oil lobby, will be very happy to see Russia keep the Greenpeace activists, especially as they themselves have designs upon the Arctic. So, Russia is also shooting itself in the foot in this way. It is keeping activists who would be protesting the oil and gas of its competitors. In fact, there is a good chance that some of the countries are doing like Brer Rabbit and pretending that they want the activists back because they know that Russia will keep the activists in order to spite them! Yet another possibility is that oil companies or governments are paying Russia to keep the Greenpeace activists. Doesn’t Russia know that any and all oil and gas companies drilling in the Arctic, including Gazprom’s competitors, are on Greenpeace’s protest list?
We must also recall that those in prison may be surprised at what happened but they are not average people. Anyone able to brave Arctic winds, waves and cold in a rubber boat; anyone able to climb mountains or oil rigs, has an above average strength of mind and force of character. So, while doing everything possible to obtain their release, we should not forget that they are brave, resistant committed people. They believe in saving the environment and that their cause is just and that fortifies them to endure anything in a way that most cannot understand.
” we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit which has been given to us.” Letter to the Romans, 5: 3-5, RSV.
New Readers: Much more on Russia was written, on previous days, and appears below this post on sheep and Sellafield. But, the sheep got tired of waiting in line, so here they are!
Wasdale Shepherd’s Meet this weekend:
Sheep wool is one of the first lines of defense for energy conservation!
As most of you have probably noticed by now, there have been a couple of reblogs about the Wasdale Head Show and Shepherd’s Meet in the Lake District, Cumbria, England, UK, this Saturday, 12th of October: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/world-heritage-status-lord-clark/ https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/find-the-unicorn-tears-wasdale-show-competition/
Herdwick Sheep being brought down from the Fells
“There has been a ‘Shepherds Meet’ at Wasdale Head for over 100 years,…” http://www.wasdaleheadshow.co.uk/
Those in the UK know about the Lake District (Lakeland) of England. Others may think that they do not know this area, but if they know of Beatrix Potter and Peter Rabbit, Wordsworth, and others who lived in this area, then they actually do know it, in some way. In particular, Beatrix Potter was committed to preserving the Herdwick Sheep, as well as the land and its culture. It is particularly tragic that while Beatrix Potter used monies from her books to buy up farms in the area to protect them, and gave the land to the National Trust, along with money and book royalties, and only a few years after she died a major nuclear establishment, Windscale (Sellafield) was set up along the coast in this area. Had she been alive would they have been able to do this? Now, they are trying to put a high-level nuclear waste dump further inland, in the Lake District National park itself. They want to build more nuclear plants at Sellafield, all while pretending that they are decommissioning, all while not knowing what to do with the waste, and having not cleaned up the old facilities. This certainly is not what Miss Potter had in mind when she gave this land to the government for safe-keeping. Rather, she had in mind conservation: Preserving the Herdwick sheep, the beauty of the land and its culture. Those who are able to get there for Saturday can enjoy this endangered culture. We note as well that sheep and alpaca need to be at the forefront of energy conservation, due to their warm wool:
Those who have read the reblogs may have also learned a new word and that is “hefted”. Hefted to the land appears somewhat synonymous to rooted to the land. It has been noted that people can also be hefted to the land, especially to a place known and loved as a child. It is a concept that world powers want everyone to forget as they chase people off of their lands, making them refugees so as better to grab the resources, in the process creating homeless, rootless, heartbroken people. It is most surely the same concept expressed by Gerald O’Hara when speaking to Scarlett in Margaret Mitchell’s “Gone with the Wind” (1936): “…the land they live on is like their mother….’Twill come to you, this love of the land. There’s no getting away from it….“.
Where is Wasdale?
“Wasdale …. is a valley and civil parish in the western part of the Lake District National Park in Cumbria, England. The River Irt flows through the valley to its estuary at Ravenglass. A large part of the main valley floor is occupied by Wastwater, the deepest lake in England (258 feet)….Nearby is St Olaf’s Church, one of the smallest churches in England…Further down the valley are the villages of Nether Wasdale and Gosforth.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wasdale (references at link)
St Olafs Church WasdaleHead by Mike Quinn via Wikimedia
This church building is believed to be over 1,000 years old, as the beams are said to have come from a Viking longship. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Olaf%27s_Church,_Wasdale (references at link)
Not to be confused with Wastewater” (although the nuclear minions want it to be nuclear wastewater).
“Wast Water or Wastwater is a lake located in Wasdale, a valley in the western part of the Lake District National Park, England. The lake is almost 3 miles long (4.6 km) and more than a third of a mile (600 m) wide. It is the deepest lake in England at 258 feet (79 m), and is owned by the National Trust. It is one of the finest examples of a glacially ‘over-deepened’ valley. The surface of the lake is about 200 feet above sea level, while its bottom is over 50 feet below sea level.
Wasdale from Wastwater, Wikimedia Commons
“The head of the Wasdale Valley is surrounded by some of the highest mountains in England, including Scafell Pike, Great Gable and Lingmell. On 9 September 2007, Wast Water was announced as the winner of a vote to determine ‘Britain’s Favourite View’ by viewers of ITV. The steep slopes on the south eastern side of the lake, leading up to the summits of Whin Rigg and Illgill Head, are known as the ‘Wastwater Screes’ or on some maps as ‘The Screes’. These screes formed as a result of ice and weathering erosion on the rocks of the Borrowdale Volcanic Group, that form the fells to the east of the lake, towards Eskdale. They are approximately 2,000 feet, from top to base, the base being about 200 feet below the surface of the lake. A path runs the length of the lake, through the boulders and scree fall at the base of this craggy fell-side. On the north western side are the cliffs of Buckbarrow (a part of Seatallan) and the upturned-boat shape of Yewbarrow. Wast Water is the source of the River Irt which flows into the Irish Sea near Ravenglass.
‘Wastwater’ comes from ‘Wasdale’ plus English ‘water’. ‘Wasdale lake’ or ‘the lake of Vatnsá, lake river’. The present name rather curiously contains the reflexes of both ON ‘vatn’ ‘water’, ‘lake’, and OE ‘wæter’ ‘water’, with the meaning ‘lake’ probably influenced by the ON ‘vatn’.” (ON=Old Norse; OE=Old English). The valley is pronounced as in ‘was’, not with a hard a: the name of the lake similarly but with a soft ‘s’ as in ‘thou wast’. The lake is named ‘Wast Water’ on Ordnance Survey maps but the spelling ‘Wastwater’ is used with roughly equal frequency, including by its owner, the National Trust, along with the Cumbria Tourist Board, and the Lake District National Park Authority.
The Sellafield connection
Water from the lake is pumped to the nearby Sellafield nuclear waste processing facility as a fresh water supply. The NDA (Nuclear Decommissioning Authority) has taken over the licence once held by BNFL (British Nuclear Fuels plc) which allows them to extract a maximum of 18,184.4 m³ a day (over 4 million gallons) and 6,637,306 m³ a year from Wast Water to use on site for various processes including the cooling ponds and reprocessing (electricity production has ceased).” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wastwater (references at link; bold added)
While Miss Potter lived in opposition to status-seeking mores and worked for conservation, a new “Lord” “Baron” “of Windermere”, David Clark, appointed “Lord” in 2001, director of Sellafield, Ltd., is seemingly involved in trying to put a high-level nuclear waste facility in the National Park.
“Within weeks of the Labour Party winning the 2001 General Election, Clark was given a life peerage as Baron Clark of Windermere, of Windermere in the County of Cumbria and now sits in the House of Lords. He was also appointed the paid post of Chairman of the Forestry Commission.” Lord Clark claims to be an “environmentalist”, while apparently promoting nuclear. Worse, he’s so old he won’t live long enough to suffer the impacts! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Clark,_Baron_Clark_of_Windermere http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_of_Lords (references at links)
“Lord Clark non executive director of Sellafield is on a salary ‘not in the public domain’ he is also chair of the Lake District National Park Partnership. Lake District National Park meetings chaired by Lord Clark reveal a bias as he talks up the safety and economic importance of Sellafield and new nuclear developments while playing down the risks.
Under his chairmanship the LDNPA SUPPORTS dangerous new build (9 new reactors) at Sellafield and is going merrily along on ‘steps towards geological disposal’ of high level nuclear waste under Cumbria.
Is this too cosy relationship illegal or classed as bribery – probably not? But evidence shows that the LDNPA has become a lapdog rather than a watchdog when it comes to the nuclearisation of Cumbria.
Date: 14 February 2012 14:35:25 GMT
Subject: Freedom of Info request MRWS monies?
As you know the LDNPA supports proposed new build at Sellafield (up to
nine reactors) and is content to ‘work with partners on steps towards
The LDNP Partnership chairman is also a non executive director of Sellafield. Lord Clark’s salary as non executive Sellafield director is ‘not in the public’ domain even under the Freedom of Information Act.
FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUEST
Under the Freedom of Information Act Radiation Free Lakeland would like to know how much money has been paid and/or is scheduled to be paid to the LDNP from WC: MRWS or MRWS Managing Radioactive Wastes Safely?
Radiation Free Lakeland
2012_02_22 FOI response M Birkby http://mariannewildart.wordpress.com/2012/02/23/everybodys-got-a-price-lord-clark-mrws-and-the-lake-district-national-park/ http://mariannewildart.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/2012_02_22-foi-response-m-birkby.doc
As Radiation Free Lakeland further points out:
“Cumbrians opposing the MRWS (Managing Radioactive Wastes Safely) charade use their own funds to attend meetings and expose the lies.
Meanwhile the government quango tasked with looking after the interests of the Lake District (Lake District National Park) are in receipt of money from the government quango tasked with “steps towards geological disposal (MRWS).” http://mariannewildart.wordpress.com/2012/02/23/everybodys-got-a-price-lord-clark-mrws-and-the-lake-district-national-park/
More recently Ms. Birkby of Radiation Free Lakeland wrote to “Lord” Clark: “We understand that you are still a salaried non executive director of Sellafield as well as a leading player in the Lake District National Park Authority. We have previously questioned this conflict of interest. A concern which appears to be borne out by the Lake District National Park’s incredibly weak and grudging 11th hour response to the geological dump andits bizarre SUPPORT for new nuclear build in Cumbria.” Reblogged here: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/world-heritage-status-lord-clark/
“Sellafield is a nuclear reprocessing site, close to the village of Seascale on the coast of the Irish Sea in Cumbria, England. The site is served by Sellafield railway station. Sellafield is an off-shoot from the original nuclear reactor site at Windscale, which is currently undergoing decommissioning and dismantling. Calder Hall, another neighbour of Windscale, is also undergoing decommissioning and dismantling of its four nuclear power generating reactors.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sellafield
It is very strange that Sellafield is supposed to be about decommissioning and dismantling and yet there are attempts to build more nuclear plants there! This is called “NuGen” and Toshiba, one of the companies involved in building Fukushima, is in the process of buying 1/2 of NuGen through its US owned subsidiary Westinghouse! See: 7 October 2013, NuGen http://www.no2nuclearpower.org.uk/news/7-october-2013/ Are they cleaning up or messing up? Seems that they are messing up without having figured out how to clean-up! We don’t even know WHAT to compare this to: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NuGeneration This is Fuk-u-shima without the shima!
Wastwater and other Lakes Endangered:
“The question is: Where will the freshwater for new nuclear build and wastes come from?
Millions of gallons of fresh water are already abstracted daily from
Wastwater and other fresh water sources to cool the wastes at Sellafield(salt water is too corrosive). Meanwhile United Utilities are strivingto find new freshwater sources for domestic supplies on the West Coast.
A RAFL spokesperson said ‘the discussions today about protecting the
Lakes’ water resources are all very worthy – but the biggest threat to Cumbria’s Lakes, rivers and tarns is from the nuclear industry. The
industry is being accommodated by regulators such as the Environment
Agency who today told Rafl that there have been discussions about having adesalination plant on the West Coast. This is lunacy! There is not enough fresh water in Cumbria to cool the heels of existing nuclearwastes.” http://mariannewildart.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/why-has-the-wettest-place-in-england-not-got-enough-freshwater/
Lack of Nuclear Responsibility Continues:
They cannot handle the old. Why are they trying to make more wastes?
“Sellafield nuclear waste firm keeps contract despite criticism 4 October 2013
The organisation cleaning up nuclear waste at Sellafield in Cumbria has had its contract renewed despite fierce criticism over delays and costs.” Continue reading the main story http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-cumbria-24395044
“Sellafield nuclear decommissioning a ‘huge challenge‘
By Chris Jackson, Presenter, Inside Out North East & Cumbria
Chris Jackson goes inside Britain’s nuclear site at Sellafield in Cumbria, one of the most complex and hazardous in the world.”
“Cleaning up the vast amounts of nuclear waste stored at the Sellafield plant is a hazardous and expensive operation.” Continue reading the main story http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-cumbria-24167091
The above BBC video notes that under Nuclear Management Partners 12 of 14 projects have not been finished on time meaning that buildings will stay radioactive for longer and 5 of 14 are over budget. They are up to 7 years behind!
“Lord” David Clark is is a Board Member of Sellafield Ltd., itself a subsidiary of Nuclear Management Partners:
“Sellafield Ltd is a nuclear decommissioning Site Licence Company (SLC) controlled by Nuclear Management Partners Ltd, its designated Parent Body Organisation (PBO). It operates under contract for the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), a government body set up specifically to deal with the nuclear legacy under the Energy Act 2004. Sellafield Ltd’s main aim is to manage the decommissioning of the Sellafield facility on behalf of the NDA. The body employs more than 13,000 workers and its focus is to deliver accelerated nuclear decommissioning and clean-up programmes. It is also involved in power operations, fuel production and reprocessing, international decommissioning, and international transportation.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sellafield_Ltd (references at link)
According to the above BBC video, Nuclear Management Partners are, in turn, comprised of French AREVA, UK’s AMEC and the US’ URS.
Where Are They Now? Where is their hefting?
U2, Bono interview and Greenpeace at Sellafield, 1992
It seems that Bono and wife Ali Hewson need to bring their discontent back closer to home. The most recent time we find either protesting Sellafield is a decade ago (Ali Hewson).
Where is their hefting? Why do they care more about Africa than their own area of the world? It is nice to go out and see the world in your teens or 20s, but at their age it is far past time to come home and make a difference, not to run away! Many people are hefted to the land but can’t go home for they are exiled. Bono and Ali Hewson are lucky, they can.
“Bono can’t help Africans by stealing their voice‘
Because the U2 frontman and others like him are seen as representatives of the poor, the poor are not invited to speak” By George Monbiot The Guardian, Monday 17 June 2013 20.30 BST ” http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/jun/17/bono-africans-stealing-voice-poor
While boycotting Russian vodka people may want to try the Lake District Beers: http://www.hawksheadbrewery.co.uk/more_info_extra.asp?current_id=90 If you miss the sheep festival this weekend perhaps you can go to the Cumbria Beer Festival later this month: http://www.hawksheadbrewery.co.uk/whatson.asp After reading these dismal posts you may need a beer!
Thursday , 10 October 2013
Please see our new post: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/10/hupacasath-first-nation-urgent-appeal/
No sense of humour in Russia
Indeed we must say it — climbing an oil rig is dangerous for those climbing; it is brave but rather silly. The giant polar bear puppet was safe and silly.
But, in the end, it proves that Russian government officials have no sense of humour. They take themselves too seriously.
This is certainly a sign of low self-esteem. Of course, it is said that all bullies suffer from low self-esteem. But, it is also said that bullies only respect strength, probably because the bully is really fearful and insecure. Appearing weak can worsen the bully’s behaviour. Contrary to what one commentator suggested there seems to have been too much groveling already or Russian officials would not continue with more non-Olympic game-playing:
“Russia says drugs found on Greenpeace ship, plans new charges”
Posted:Wed, 09 Oct 2013 15:51:09 GMT
“MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian investigators said on Wednesday they had found drugs aboard a Greenpeace ship used in a protest against offshore Arctic drilling and would press new charges against some of the 30 people being held for alleged piracy.” http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/Reuters/worldNews/~3/5Z9SKYS5CfI/story01.htm
Self-confident people are able to laugh and be nice to people. They could laugh off a couple of people trying to put a banner on an oil rig. Fearful insecure people can not. If Russia wants to show their strength and self-confidence, rather than their weakness and fear, then they will free the prisoners.
Wednesday, 9 October 2013
Because They Can –Don’t Let Them–Boycott Now!
No Concept of Rule of Law in Russia — Just like Haiti
First people need to do a pre-Olympic boycott of tickets, merchandise, vodka, fuel, etc. to see if Russia will give the 30 hostages back. If they still refuse then it will be time to go to full Olympic and other boycotts. It has worked before:
“Russia rejects bail appeals in Greenpeace ‘piracy’ case
Two activists and photographer to remain in jail after they, and 27 others, were arrested on ship approaching Arctic oil rig”
Shaun Walker in Moscow theguardian.com, Tuesday 8 October 2013 18.25 BST
“In the case of [photographer] Sinyakov, the court was handed a petition signed by hundreds of journalists calling for his release, as well as a bail offer of 1 million roubles (£20,000) and evidence that a hotel room had been booked in his name in Murmansk, ensuring that he would not leave town before the trial. The judge remained unmoved and refused the bail application.”
Read full article here: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/08/russia-rejects-bail-appeals-greenpeace-piracy
Better Cozy at Home Under a Blanket than Dependent Upon Russia:
“Concern for health of Greenpeace activists detained in Russia
Some activists and two journalists held in solitary confinement while others are being kept in extremely cold cells while awaiting piracy charges” Adam Vaughan The Guardian, Monday 7 October 2013 11.58 BST Read article here: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/oct/07/health-greenpeace-activists-russia-piracy
Europe has allowed itself to become too dependent upon Russia for its energy needs and has already paid dearly, in the past, due to Russia’s cutting energy off during disputes with transit countries. Worse, it opens up the possibility of being ruled-controlled by Russia. Those countries thinking of using Russian oil and gas may want to think twice. Those already using it need to break free.
US EIA-DOE, Russia Pipelines, wikimedia, (year unknown)
Rather than risk Russia cutting your oil and gas if you don’t obey, it is better to use less energy, pending the development of more environmentally friendly energy. Better to voluntarily reduce or do without heat this winter than risk falling under arbitary Russian governance, where you can be arrested for a crime you did not commit and thrown into a cold Arctic jail without bail. Better to be safe under a warm blanket in a country with rule of law.
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Le Lit (The Bed), ca 1892
Tuesday, 8 October 2013 (Update 2)
“The greatest difference between genius and stupidity is that genius is limited.” http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Talk:Albert_Einstein
The Craziest Argument Yet: Gazprom claims that a rubber boat can damage an oil rig that is supposed to be ice-resistant!
Gazprom alleges concerns that Greenpeace and its rubber boats and climbing equipment for one or two people could have damaged the base of an oil rig (or pipes) that is supposed to be resistant to ice and harsh climate! Normally we would be more worried about the Rosneft-BP combination in the Arctic, but this clearly shows that Gazprom is clueless of the climatic conditions that they are up against if they do not know the difference between a rubber boat and ice as far as strength and hardness go. Only people who have never seen ice or rubber do not know the difference. Why do they make children’s toys from rubber? —because it is safe. Did rubber boats sink the Titantic? No! Ice did. Gazprom really is in la-la land or pure denial. The rig must also be resistant to very harsh wind and waves. Anyone with even a slight familiarity with Nordic Seas knows how rough the wind and waves are!
“On Russia’s controversial Arctic oil rig Prirazlomnaya”
By Daniel Sandford, BBC News, Prirazlomnaya oil rig, Russia
7 October 2013 Last updated at 12:00 GMT
“Gazprom, the Russian state-owned company which operates the rig, says that this base is so heavy that it cannot be moved, even by thick ice.”
“By coming so close Greenpeace could have damaged the base of the platform”
Read Story here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-24427153
The article below explains some of the challenges of dealing with ice:
“there are less than 10 rigs in the world suitable to operate in the seas off eastern Canada…“.
“For projects already operating in Iceberg Alley, like ExxonMobil’s Hibernia, that system includes using support ships to ‘lasso’ approaching icebergs with cables and towing them away from the platform.”
See the article here:
“In Canada’s north Atlantic, new oil frontier shows life beyond shale
Posted:Fri, 27 Sep 2013 19:06:24 GMT
CALGARY, Alberta, Sept 27 (Reuters) – Statoil’s announcement this week of a major oil find off Canada’s Atlantic coast offers a refreshing reminder that new technology and high prices are helping uncover new oil supplies far beyond U.S. shale and the Alberta oil sands“. http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/USenergyNews/~3/q6YINagqHWQ/story01.htm
Tuesday 8 October 2013
The Judge Joseph post was updated. Finally we hear that he did indeed have a drink at the meeting with the President, Prime Minister, and Minister of Justice. (A meeting which these officials deny having participated in). https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/09/27/part-iv-of-the-senate-inquest-report-on-the-troubling-death-of-judge-jean-serge-joseph/
Are Imperialists Still Carving Up The World?
Have We Fallen Into A Victorian Time Warp?
Does anyone else have that deja vu feeling?
Imperial Standard of the Emperor of Russia, 1858-1917
We know for certain that President Putin knows what happened in 1917!
“The Rhodes Colossus“: Caricature of Cecil John Rhodes, after he announced his plans for a telegraph line and railroad from Cape Town to Cairo, by Edward Linley Sambourne 1892, Punch. Rhodes founded the De Beers Mining Company, owned the British South Africa Company…He liked to ‘paint the map British red’ and declared: ‘all of these stars … these vast worlds that remain out of reach. If I could, I would annex other planets.“ S. Gertrude Millin, Rhodes, London: 1933, p.138 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperialism (bold added)
The Arctic is closer than other planets….
“The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
And all that beauty, all that wealth e’er gave,
Awaits alike the inevitable hour.
The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
Can storied urn or animated bust
Back to its mansion call the fleeting breath?
Can Honour’s voice provoke the silent dust,
Or Flattery soothe the dull cold ear of Death?
The applause of listening senates to command,
The threats of pain and ruin to despise,
To scatter plenty o’er a smiling land,
And read their history in a nation’s eyes,
Forbade to wade through slaughter to a throne,
And shut the gates of mercy on mankind,…”
Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” ca 1751
Monday, 7 October 2013
Militarizing and Drilling the Artic: Whatever did Greenpeace Stumble Upon and Who is endangering whom!?
Below are some news articles which raise more questions than they answer. First there is a Sept. 11, 2013 article explaining that while a damaged tanker hit by ice awaited help for a week, Russia’s heavy missile cruiser Petr Veliky was being escorted through the same strait by four nuclear icebreakers. Is this what Russia didn’t want Greenpeace to see? Or this? By October 6, 2013, it was reported that on October 4th the Northern Russian fleet was doing military exercises in the Barents Sea and missile launches were carried out there. In between we are told that on September 15, while Greenpeace was working its way into the Barents, Russian media announced that the Russian military was returning to the northern frontier. As the Northern Fleet set up a new base, around the 15th or 16th of September, NORDEFCO undertook “Arctic Challenge” fighter jet exercises in the airspace of Finland, Sweden and Norway from the 16 to 20 September and again from the 23 to 26 September from 9 a.m. till 6 p.m. On September 24 to 25 2013 The Third International Arctic Forum “The Arctic – Territory of Dialogue” took place in Salekhard. VOA complained that journalists were not allowed to stay around and take pictures or see anything.
“Four icebreakers for missile cruiser – none for damaged tanker: The Northern Fleet’s flag ship «Petr Veliky» was escorted by no less than four nuclear-powered icebreakers on its voyage eastwards along the Northern Sea Route. At the same time a damaged tanker fully loaded with diesel fuel has been waiting for assistance for a week after it was struck by an ice floe.” By Trude Pettersen September 11, 2013. Article here: http://barentsobserver.com/en/arctic/2013/09/four-icebreakers-missile-cruiser-none-damaged-tanker-11-09
(Anyone interested in the region should be reading the Barentsobserver. Note that it is funded, in part, by French Oil company Total, but it offers comprehensive and rare coverage).
Yamal Icebreaker. Photo by Wofratz via Wikimedia
“On Sept. 15, as the eco-activists were making their way into the Barents Sea, Russia’s main news networks were trumpeting the return of the Russian military to the northern frontier” by Simon Shuster, Time World, Oct 2, 2013 (reblogged) https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/russia-takes-on-greenpeace-and-stakes-its-claim-to-the-arctic/
“Largest air exercise since the 90ies: Some 80 jet fighters from Bodø, Ørland, Rovaniemi and Luleå will together with UK and US Air Forces and cross the skies of the Barents Region when the Arctic Challenge Exercise starts Monday.” By Thomas Nilsen September 16, 2013
“This and next week’s air force exercise is part of the new increased military cooperation between Finland, Sweden and Norway with the goal to enhance Nordic cooperation under NORDEFCO.” Article continues: http://barentsobserver.com/en/security/2013/09/largest-air-exercise-90ies-16-09
According to the NORDEFCO web site:
“Arctic Challenge exercise will see dozens of fighters in the northern sky“: “Flight activity takes place in the airspace of Finland, Sweden and Norway 16 to 20 September and 23 to 26 September from 9 a.m. till 6 p.m.” http://www.nordefco.org/Arctic-Challenge-exercise-will-see-dozens-of-fighters-in-the-northern-sky
“In remotest Russian Arctic, a new Navy base
Northern Fleet personnel is reestablishing a base on the island of Kotelny at the North Siberian Islands. A heavily equipped Northern Fleet mission is setting up a base at the New Siberian Islands, a key site along the Northern Sea Route.” By Atle Staalesen September 17, 2013
“According to military sources, the new base will protect offshore oil and gas resources in the area and keep an eye on the growing number of ships sailing along the Northern Sea Route.” See the entire article here: http://barentsobserver.com/en/security/2013/09/remotest-russian-arctic-new-navy-base-17-09
In the midst of all of this military activity, on
September 18, 2013 here comes Greenpeace:
“17.28 – Camila, a 21 year-old activist from Argentina, describes the action in a blog post.
02.34 – Four inflatables leave the Arctic Sunrise heading towards Gazprom’s oil platform, the Prirazlomnaya. Activists attempt to climb and establish themselves on the outside structure of the platform to protest against imminent drilling.
They are here to peacefully protest against the Arctic oil rush, which threatens grave harm to the Arctic environment, as well as extracting more oil that humanity cannot afford to burn. The Prirazlomnaya is the first oil rig to start oil production in the ice-filled waters of the Arctic. Safety culture on the rig is a joke.
The nearby Russian Coast Guard ship quickly responds by launching inflatables manned with agents masked in balaclavas. They proceed to ram and slash the Greenpeace inflatables, threaten activists at gun and knife point and fire warning shots from automatic weapons. Further, the remaining crew onboard the Arctic Sunrise count 11 shots fired across the bow from the Coast Guard vessel’s artillery cannon.” http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/news/features/From-peaceful-action-to-dramatic-seizure-a-timeline-of-events-since-the-Arctic-Sunrise-took-action-September-18-CET/
It seems that they were lucky not to have been there when the missiles were being tested. Does Russia give notification ahead on these tests? If not, it could be dangerous for any boats. If yes, we suggest that the person responsible for this sort of research at Greepeace offer themselves as a prisoner in exchange for one of the other hostages. It is clear from the face of the Finnish lady held hostage that they did not know what they were in for.
“Russia gives NATO cold shoulder on Arctic militarization”
By Robert Bridge, RT. Published time: September 20, 2011 12:40
“While agreeing that the Arctic states – comprised of Canada, Denmark (by way of Greenland), Norway, Russia and the United States – have been paying more attention to their military presence in the region, Vasilyev said the military build-up is not large-scale and should not cause alarm.” See: http://rt. com/politics/russia-arctic-nato-oil-putin-947/ Among other things, the above article discusses Russia’s efforts to prove that its continental shelf extends to the North Pole, which would allow it to claim the oil and gas reserves.
Map of Northern Fleet Bases by Insider via Wikimedia
(Note the radioactive waste at Murmansk where the 30 are being held in prison for from 2 months to 15 years. If they do not get out promptly and if any get cancer they and their families will need to sue the Russia government.)
The Third International Arctic Forum “The Arctic – Territory of Dialogue” will took place in Salekhard, the capital of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Area, located in the Arctic Circle, from September 24 to 25 2013. It was apparently from this Forum that President Putin stated that the Greenpeace group were not pirates.
“Russia’s Potemkin Arctic Conference?” By James Brooke. Voice of America, Posted by Andre Crous on October 2, 2013
“There were two hours to go Wednesday afternoon at the international conference ‘The Arctic – Territory of Dialogue’ when the organizers, The Russian Geographical Society, announced that all foreign correspondents had to get out of the Russian Arctic by sundown.” http://www.praguepost.com/blogs/blog/2013/10/02/russia’s-potemkin-arctic-conference/
“Northern Russian fleet carries out military exercise in the Barents sea” Published time: October 06, 2013 03:33
“Missile launches were carried out in the Barents Sea by the Northern Fleet to test the readiness of shipboard and shore-based missile systems on Friday, said the Russian Defense Ministry. According to the exercise plan, targets located at a distance of 60 to 400 kilometers were successfully hit by rockets ‘Granite’, ‘Mosquito’ and ‘Malachite“. http://rt. com/in-motion/russia-north-military-rockets-771/
Video at link.