Caring For Our Future

Written by Maggie Gundersen & Grayson Webb
Dear Fairewinds Supporter,
This newsletter will be Fairewinds’ last for 2017. Your support is what makes our work possible!

Our special thanks to each one of you who has donated during this year-end fund drive

If you have not donated yet, please consider doing so. Donating today to Fairewinds will be one of the last times you will be able to donate to a non-profit and take a tax deduction for doing so, at least according to the latest information on the new Congressional tax plan. Are tax cuts coming your way? Then please donate to Fairewinds in 2017! 
Working in the environmental field has been an extremely challenging for all of us, as we see first-hand the seemingly daily rollback of crucial life-protecting U.S. environmental regulations. 

In the nuclear power arena, Arnie and I, and the Fairewinds Crew see cover-ups about radioactive releases, delay after delay in enforcement of critical post-Fukushima atomic power reactor modifications, as well as an unplanned and unfunded exodus by nuclear power operators with aging reactors and highly radioactively contaminated sites. How will those sites be adequately cleaned and who will pay are the leading questions for 2018!

The funds you donated to Fairewinds Energy Education in 2017 helped the Fairewinds Crew continue to demystify nuclear power through education. 

What did we accomplish during 2017?

During 2017, working with crowd-sourced data enabled Arnie to research and co-author a peer-reviewed article in the STOTEN (Science for the Total Environment) Journal with Dr. Marco Kaltofen. Entitled Radioactively-hot Particles Detected in Dusts and Soils from Northern Japan by Combination of Gamma Spectrometry, Autoradiography, and SEM/EDS Analysis and Implications in Radiation Risk Assessment, this in-depth scientific research first began in 2011 after the meltdowns in Japan at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant site. The data shows that radioactive hot particles from the Fukushima meltdowns are still contaminating Japan despite ongoing efforts to clean up the massive radiation releases and deposits, and the government’s claim that its removal has been successful is untrue. 

Together, Arnie and STOTEN co-author Marco Kaltofen spent two-weeks in Japan in September 2017 working with citizen scientists and meeting with members of The Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA). Arnie and Marco discovered that JAEA is using the same type of equipment and methodology that was applied during their research, although JAEA is not sharing and publishing its data like Arnie and Marco are.
Arnie and Marco Kaltofen during their 2017 trip to Japan.
Arnie was featured in a Truthout interview authored by journalist Dahr Kamail and entitled, Japan Plans to Expose Its People and 2020 Tokyo Olympians to Fukushima Radiation. In in the interview, Arnie shares just how highly contaminated with radioactivity many parts of Japan still are despite the cleanup efforts of TEPCO and Japan's government."The disaster [Fukushima Daiichi] is not 'over' and 'home' no longer is habitable."
Maggie and Arnie traveled to Georgia to meet with citizens gravely concerned about the ongoing construction of the Vogtle atomic power reactor, an untried design called the AP1000 that has a critical design flaw called the Chimney Effect, and is now more than 5-years behind schedule and $11 Billion over budget.

Maggie was featured in a Newsweek article, “Florida Nuke Plant Did Not Meet Fed Safety Guidelines As Irma Roared”. As Fairewinds and our colleagues have been saying, the increasing extreme weather events are all symptoms of climate change, which severely impacts atomic power reactors. The nuclear power industry would have you believe that atomic power reactors are good for climate change and CO2, but that is a falsehood.
Filmmaker Robbie Leppzer was tapped to show his film Power Struggle at the Vermont International Film Festival (VTIFF) in October. Power Struggle has begun its nationwide tour.
Robbie Leppzer stands in front of the poster for his movie Power Struggle
at Brattleboro’s Latchis Theatre. Photo by Kevin O’Connor/VTDigger
What Research Will Fairewinds Conduct In 2018?

Fairewinds will conduct more scientific research and more data analysis as it pertains to the way radioactivity moves in our environment in ways that were never anticipated by the nuclear industry, the governments with atomic power reactors in their countries, and the people who live and work near these reactors, mining sites, and nuclear waste dumps. This migrating radioactivity – as detailed in the STOTEN peer-reviewed Journal moves where nature takes it, in the air we breathe, the water we drink, and into the organisms that help sustain life on our earth.

Another one of Fairewinds current areas of research combined with Arnie’s more than 45-years of nuclear engineering experience is the decommissioning and dismantlement of nuclear power reactor sites. Ongoing analysis shows that the newly proposed rubblization solution to cleaning up radioactive sites is simply not a viable solution. As the STOTEN Journal article shows, minute radioactively-hot particles of fine-dust migrate in air, rain, snow, snowmelt, soil, groundwater, and in any manner that nature carries it. Therefore, using rubblization to grind contaminated concrete and mix it with uncontaminated concrete that has also been pulverized will simply create a very fine radioactive dust that will move wherever the natural terrain and weather patterns capture it and move it. Would you want to live near an old reactor site, nuclear waste dump, or defunct uranium mine and be at risk for inhaling or ingesting fine radioactively-hot dust?
Climate News
The year of 2017 was an extreme year for natural disasters. It felt like it was one extreme event after another: hurricane after hurricane, flood after flood, and fire after fire. While there is no easy way to point to any one severe weather event and measure climate changes direct impact, but there is a clear link between anthropogenic climate change and an increased likelihood of natural disasters. There is no doubt that 2017 is shaping up to be The Most Expensive Weather Year EverRead the full Atlantic story by Annie Lowrey to get the full scoop.
As a non-profit 501(c)3, our work at Fairewinds Energy Education is supported by grants and by many small individual donations from people like you from all around the world who believe in our work as much as we do.

The Fairewinds Crew works hard to demystify nuclear power through education.
We at Fairewinds Energy Education would like to thank you for your ongoing support of our mission

Fairewinds Energy Education is a 501c3 non-profit organization founded in 2008. Our mission is to educate the public about nuclear power and other energy issues. We have designed our website to be a hub for fact-based, undistorted nuclear energy information. Fairewinds’ website features podcasts and videos, in which we collaborate with experts in wide ranging fields to discuss nuclear energy issues.

On our website you’ll also find blog posts on current events, expert witness reports on nuclear safety issues, frequently asked questions (FAQs) about nuclear power, a nuclear book list, archives of our presentations, media coverage, newsletters, and much more. Thanks to our dedicated volunteer translators, our content is available in four languages.

We at Fairewinds Energy Education wish you a wonderful holiday season followed by positive personal growth, a warm and inviting community, and a peaceful world in 2018.
Thanks to your support, we will keep you informed!

Fairewinds Energy Education
Burlington, VT
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