Author Archives: nuclearhistory

The 2009 CSIRO Warning regarding the Increasing risk of Bushfire in Australia

For 10 years Australian governments have sat on their hands in regard to this warning from Australia’s leading science institution.

Instead of acknowledging the reality of the rapidly growing risk of bushfires – more bushfires, more intense bushfires and larger bushfires – politicians did nothing but lie.

Successive governments pretended that they did not “believe” in the growing risk posed by sudden climate change, by denying the basis of climate and by claiming, later on, that if climate were occurring it would be of benefit.

Today politicians are labelling those who condemn them in the light of the current mega fires across two states as being “inner city lunatics”. This includes a group of Australia’s former leaders in emergency services. The politician Barnaby Joyce blatantly sought to gain political advantage by claiming one of the people killed in this week’s fires was a ‘green’. How Joyce could claim any knowledge of this given Australia’s democracy is based on a secret ballot is unknown. That he is barbaric in what he sought by raising the poor deceased person’s name is clear. More votes for him on the backs of the burnt bodies of victims.

The leader of the National Party stands condemned for attempting to shut down public debate regarding climate change and bushfires. That the topics are worthy of discussion is clear from the 2009 CSIRO report to the Australian Senate. It is clear that most politicians have been extremely negligent over the last ten years patently obvious.

Paul Langley

The Present and the Future of the Australian Power Grid. Big Bucks and Fewer and Fewer Users.

The Present and the Future of the Australian Power Grid. Big Bucks and Fewer and Fewer Users.

Currently Australians are discussing and are concerned about the cost of electrical power. The cost of the electrical grid has become more and more expensive. Energy market authorities have noted that this fixed cost is increasing. At the same time, the advent of solar panels and storage batteries has meant that some people are no longer reliant at all upon the electricity grid and more and more people are totally reliant upon it. The fewer people and businesses connected to the grid, the higher grid costs will be for the remaining grid connected customers.

I think it is unlikely that widespread house hold and business adoption of plutonium or strontium Radioisotope thermoelectric generator batteries will occur. (See ). These devices are routinely used by NASA in its space craft, and have been used extensively as a source of electrical power in remote areas in various nations, especially in the former USSR. There are a number of reasons why these devices will not be sold on the retail market to individuals. The reasons for this relate not the devices’ function nor its normal safe operation. The reasons relate to what the devices contain. I will discuss this further later.

At the dawn of the nuclear age, it’s futuristic advocates , such as Dr. Edward Teller (USA) and Prof, Titterton (Australia).promised that nuclear technology, including nuclear power cars, would hit the open market “soon”. NASA does use nuclear isotope thermal electrical generator batteries in spacecraft. For example: “Radioisotope power systems convert heat from the natural radioactive decay of the isotope plutonium-238 (used in a ceramic form of plutonium dioxide) into electrical power to operate the computers, science instruments, and other hardware aboard NASA missions.” End quote, Source: “NASA Radio Isotope Power Systems, About RPS, About Plutonium 238.” These devices could power homes and cars. They could compete on the open market against solar panels and lithium batteries. This will never happen, for reasons I will explain later.

Seriously thinking about the power grid as it is, the cost of it, the nature of the challenges and changes the current grid faces into the future, the rise of home and business small scale power generation and storage, the anticipated rise in micro grids and shared power generation leads to various possibilities. And most of these possibilities pose serious questions on many levels. Access and equity being a most important one, one that so far has not, substantially, been included planning for either the present or the future. It is certain, in my opinion, that over time more and more Australians will live grid independent lives.

There are no small scale modular reactors in mass production, none with a proven commercial track record and the vast bulk exist only as concepts, designs and prototypes. A nation which installed a current model small modular reactor would be foolish to do so. They are unproven.

Nuclear power does not address the market which caters for those who wish to disconnect from the grid. This is because the proliferation of solar panels is not a threat to the safety of the world. This is why RTG power sources will be sold on the retail market. This is why I cannot ring up NASA and order 6 RTGs to bolt to my house to power it. I will never be allowed to sell the excess power such an array of RTGs to my immediate neighbours. There are other reasons in addition to proliferation concerns and treaties. There is the threat of deliberate misuse. There are other threats. There is the aging of the unit’s shielding. There is the threat of theft. And so on and so on. In a perfect world RTGs could power millions of home. There is nothing about the device themselves that poses a threat. The problem is not the functioning unit. The threat is the nature of humanity, for all our attributes we are capable of making grave mistakes and of acts of folly. Even though RTGs could radically reduce deforestation in remote areas such as on the fringes of the Sahara, the risks are so grave it will never be done. However, off grid power provided at the village level to the same area can halt the expansion of the Sahara over night, and villagers would have far less need to walk miles looking for firewood.

Although the current generation of lithium batteries need to be developed futher, they are in use and their prices are rapidly becoming more and more affordable. Further, current research by various researchers in various nations – including Australia, China, the joint China – Australia university based teams in Australia, the US Military and many others – hold the very real promise of perfecting aqueous Lithium batteries which are fire proof, cheap and safe to store and use at any time, including whe n worn out. The life span of today’s lithium batteries is 10 years, and this is expected to increase. I refer to the article “Army discovery opens path to safer batteries, By CCDC Army Research Laboratory Public AffairsMay 10, 2019, USA, at   the article in part states: “….researchers at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command’s Army Research Laboratory, the Army’s corporate research laboratory known as ARL, and the University of Maryland demonstrated a transformative step in battery technology with the identification of a new cathode chemistry…. Building on their previous discoveries of the intrinsically safe “water-in-salt electrolytes (WiSE)” and the technique to stabilize graphite anodes in WiSE, the team’s development of the novel cathode chemistry further extends available energy for aqueous batteries to a previously unachievable level.” End quote. Source as cited above. Backpack RTGs could be carried by soldiers, The reasons why that has never happened and will likely never happen relates not to the device’s functional reality but to the manner by which it may be misused by enemy and to the consequences of battle damage to the device’s shielding. Nuclear industry only sells to governments. It does not have a product for the mass retail market. Normal people are not to be trusted with an RTG in the shed or bolted to their houses or shoved under the bonnet of an electric VW Beetle. The promises made by Teller and Titterton always were bunkum. It could all done but it will never will be done. The nuclear industry has nothing to sell me as an individual. A home will never be grid independent because of nuclear technology or nuclear products. In fact the reverse is true. As grids get bigger and bigger and more and more complex, they become more and more expensive. In Australia, the more the grid expands, the more money is sent to the owners overseas.

What will the cost of the grid be in 10 years time? In 20 years time? I do not know. However government must surely be aware of projections based on present trends. I would anticipate that the grid is projected to become more and more expensive for those fewer and fewer people who remain totally dependent upon it.

For as sure as eggs, nuclear power will rely upon an expensive nuclear specification power grid to operate economically and to operate safely. I shall prove this in the next section, using IAEA technical documents as my source. I refer the minister to the following news item: “Living off the grid and driving an electric car is this former farmer’s idea of heaven” ABC News, Australia, August 2019 at

The reality is we are on the verge of the onset of the effects of sudden climate change. We are also in a transition phase in terms of energy technology. The power grid is one of the oldest components of the old energy production and distribution order. It is in for a period of rapid change. At the same time as more and more people are able to generate and store their own energy needs, nuclear industry claims it’s nuclear power plants can solve all the world’s energy and save the world. must know it cannot compete in the off grid world. It must know its technology will add to grid costs. The transitions we face in many ways reveal the vulnerabilities of the nuclear industry to changing economics and the changing nature of the Australian energy market. I don’t want experimental reactors with no commercial track record. I don’t want an expensive system which has no social licence to exist in Australia, I don’t want to be connected to the grid at all. I don’t want my electricity to be produced by the consumption of fuel or by the use of Einstein’s 1905 (E = MC squared ie 200 million electrons volts for each atom fissioned) . Einstein is being replaced by the new formula :

E = e – conversion losses. I expect solar panels to become increasingly efficient, and with an increasing expanding operational bsndwidth. In terms of technology breakthroughs which may well render the grid redundant completely, scientists continue to define and understand the Higgs Boson, that concept, recently confirmed as a particle, which seems responsible for determining how the stuff of cosmos manifests. As Mass or as Energy. In comparison to such promise, fission is in fact extremely and wantonly dirty and inefficient. I won’t mention fusion except to say research to date indicates that perhaps soon an investment in fission power could well be the road to grave financial loss. After all, nuclear power already has competitors.

I refer the Minister to the publication: “Review of Radioisotopes as Radiological Weapons”, Carl A. Curling Alex Lodge, INSTITUTE FOR DEFENSE ANALYSES, June 2016 Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. IDA Document D-8048 Log: H 16-000770, INSTITUTE FOR DEFENSE ANALYSES 4850 Mark Center Drive Alexandria, Virginia 22311-1882. Copyright: Copyright Notice© 2016 Institute for Defense Analyses 4850 Mark Center Drive, Alexandria, Virginia 22311-1882 • (703) 845-2000 This material may be reproduced by or for the U.S. Government pursuant to the copyright license under the clause at DFARS 252.227-7013 (a)(16) [June 2013].

The following information is reproduced  from the source above as fair use in the interests of open debate. In relation to portable small nuclear electrical generators the publication says this: “Despite IAEA guidance, many nations still fail to regulate and protect their dangerous sources adequately. For example, in December 2001 in the Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic, an abandoned Russian RTG, which contained significant quantities of 90Sr, was discovered. Three woodsmen encountered the source and unknowingly exposed themselves to high doses of radiation. Two of the woodsmen developed serious symptoms of Acute Radiation Syndrome (ARS) and beta radiation burns that required immediate medical treatment. Another example, from Mexico, occurred when a transport vehicle carrying a significant amount of 60Co was hijacked by criminals.  These incidents demonstrate a lack of security and the opportunity that surrounds the acquisition of radiological material. A high demand for illicit radioactive material has resulted in heavy black-market trade, notably in Former Soviet Union (FSU) states.” end quote. source as given above. This publication explains why the nuclear industry cannot enter the retail market. It explains the misuse to which fission products can be put. Nuclear advocates habitually label those who point these facts and risks out as deluded and hysteric idiots. I refute such allegations with the full force of the source document cited above. That such a document is needed and exists at all is appalling, although the topic is known by me and the theme is familiar to me due to my previous employment and training.

Nuclear industry and government does not trust individuals to own their own fission product powered thermal electric generators (RTGs). Yet that industry and its customer governments demand of us that we trust both of them.  Once nuclear power comes to Australia we will have no say in regard to the utterances of the nuclear authorities, corporate or governmental. The concept of nuclear secrecy is enshrined in national legislation around the world. Control of information relating to “special nuclear material” is bedrock in the current US Atomic Energy Act. The US concept of “Unclassified Restricted Information”  related to “Special Nuclear Material” remains current in the United States.  Apart from reducing people from fully knowing, these restrictions prevent investors receiving full disclosure from nuclear industry.  Recent events in Japan bear witness to this in action.  The indications are that if nuclear power comes to Australia, the free market forces will not be allowed to apply to the nature and adaptions of the grid. The grid will be protected by a barrier from the most efficient future.  This is because the grid will have to comply to nuclear specifications. To be viable economically, people will likely be compelled to either remain connected to the grid or to pay for the grid whether they use the grid or not.

Next The reliance of Nuclear Power Plants upon a compatible and infallible Power Grid for safe operation




























Inflammation and cancer

source link

. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2010 Jan 7.
Published in final edited form as:
PMCID: PMC2803035
PMID: 12490959

Inflammation and cancer

Lisa M. Coussens*§ and Zena Werb§

Recent data have expanded the concept that inflammation is a critical component of tumour progression. Many cancers arise from sites of infection, chronic irritation and inflammation. It is now becoming clear that the tumour microenvironment, which is largely orchestrated by inflammatory cells, is an indispensable participant in the neoplastic process, fostering proliferation, survival and migration. In addition, tumour cells have co-opted some of the signalling molecules of the innate immune system, such as selectins, chemokines and their receptors for invasion, migration and metastasis. These insights are fostering new anti-inflammatory therapeutic approaches to cancer development.

The functional relationship between inflammation and cancer is not new. In 1863, Virchow hypothesized that the origin of cancer was at sites of chronic inflammation, in part based on his hypothesis that some classes of irritants, together with the tissue injury and ensuing inflammation they cause, enhance cell proliferation. Although it is now clear that proliferation of cells alone does not cause cancer, sustained cell proliferation in an environment rich in inflammatory cells, growth factors, activated stroma, and DNA-damage-promoting agents, certainly potentiates and/or promotes neoplastic risk. During tissue injury associated with wounding, cell proliferation is enhanced while the tissue regenerates; proliferation and inflammation subside after the assaulting agent is removed or the repair completed. In contrast, proliferating cells that sustain DNA damage and/or mutagenic assault (for example, initiated cells) continue to proliferate in microenvironments rich in inflammatory cells and growth/survival factors that support their growth. In a sense, tumours act as wounds that fail to heal.

Today, the causal relationship between inflammation, innate immunity and cancer is more widely accepted; however, many of the molecular and cellular mechanisms mediating this relationship remain unresolved — these are the focus of this review. Furthermore, tumour cells may usurp key mechanisms by which inflammation interfaces with cancers, to further their colonization of the host. Although the acquired immune response to cancer is intimately related to the inflammatory response, this topic is beyond the scope of this article, but readers are referred to several excellent reviews,.


Ionising Radiation, Inflammation and Autoimmune disease

source link:

 2018 Mar 20;5(1):9. doi: 10.1186/s40779-018-0156-7.

Radiation-induced inflammation and autoimmune diseases.


Currently, ionizing radiation (IR) plays a key role in the agricultural and medical industry, while accidental exposure resulting from leakage of radioactive sources or radiological terrorism is a serious concern. Exposure to IR has various detrimental effects on normal tissues. Although an increased risk of carcinogenesis is the best-known long-term consequence of IR, evidence has shown that other diseases, particularly diseases related to inflammation, are common disorders among irradiated people. Autoimmune disorders are among the various types of immune diseases that have been investigated among exposed people. Thyroid diseases and diabetes are two autoimmune diseases potentially induced by IR. However, the precise mechanisms of IR-induced thyroid diseases and diabetes remain to be elucidated, and several studies have shown that chronic increased levels of inflammatory cytokines after exposure play a pivotal role. Thus, cytokines, including interleukin-1(IL-1), tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α) and interferon gamma (IFN-γ), play a key role in chronic oxidative damage following exposure to IR. Additionally, these cytokines change the secretion of insulin and thyroid-stimulating hormone(TSH). It is likely that the management of inflammation and oxidative damage is one of the best strategies for the amelioration of these diseases after a radiological or nuclear disaster. In the present study, we reviewed the evidence of radiation-induced diabetes and thyroid diseases, as well as the potential roles of inflammatory responses. In addition, we proposed that the mitigation of inflammatory and oxidative damage markers after exposure to IR may reduce the incidence of these diseases among individuals exposed to radiation.

. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2016 Jan 1.
Published in final edited form as:
PMCID: PMC4378687
PMID: 25481260

Radiation & Inflammation


The immune system has the power to modulate the expression of radiation-induced normal and tumor tissue damage. On the one hand, it can contribute to cancer cure, on the other it can influence acute and late radiation side effects, which in many ways resemble acute and chronic inflammatory disease states. The way radiation-induced inflammation feeds into adaptive antigen-specific immune responses adds another dimension to the tumor-host crosstalk during radiation therapy and to possible radiation-driven autoimmune responses. Understanding how radiation impacts inflammation and immunity is therefore critical if we are to effectively manipulate these forces for benefit in radiation oncology treatments.

Windscale/Sellafield Pt. 10. Full text of Report on the Investigation of the Possible Increased Incidence of Cancer in West Cumbria 1986, COMARE. HMSO.

Click to access Report_on_the_Investigation_of_the_Possible_Increased_Incidence_of_Cancer_in_West_Cumbria_a.pdf

“Report on the Investigation of the Possible Increased Incidence of Cancer in West Cumbria : Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (COMARE), first report HMSO 1986.”
This report is the first such report published as a result of British media reports in 1984. These media reports uncovered an apparent excess of childhood cancers in populations living in the vicinity of the Windscale/Sellafield nuclear facility.
Comare continues to publish reports on this matter. These are easily obtained from the UK national archives and from Comare. However, the first such Comare report is harder to obtain. It was published in 1986, coincident with the Chernobyl disaster, timing which the British government of the time considered “unfortunate” (National Archives). Few copies of the Comare 1 report were printed.
Hence I am placing the report online. It was obtained by requesting it from Comare UK. It is an open unclassified document.
Paul Langley

Windscale/Sellafield Pt. 9 “Cancer in Cumbria and in the vicinity of the Sellafield nuclear installation, 1963-90” Draper et all 1993

Click to access 89.full.pdf

Cancer in Cumbria and in the vicinity ofthe Sellafield nuclear
installation, 1963-90

G J Draper, C A Stiller, R A Cartwright, A W Craft, T J Vincent

BMJ 1993; 306 doi: (Published 09 January 1993)
Cite this as: BMJ 1993;306:89

Full text at link above.

Conclusion from Abstract: “Conclusions-During 1963-83 and 1984-90 the
incidence of malignant disease, particularly lymphoid
leukaemia and non-Hodgkin lymphomas, in
young people aged 0-24 in Seascale was higher than
would be expected on the basis of either national
rates or those for the surrounding areas. Although
this increased risk is unlikely to be due to chance, the
reasons for it are still unknown.” end quote. source as above.

Windscale/Sellafield Pt. 8. Comare Reports 1 – 6. Summary only available

Link to UK Archive:

Preamble at the UK archive site: “Summary of the First Six COMARE Reports
COMARE Reports 1-6 are not available in PDF. The PDF document below summarises the conclusions and recommendations of these six reports.” UK National Archives.

Summary document text:

Summary of the work of COMARE as published in its first six reports
The Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (COMARE) was established in November 1985 in response to the final recommendation of the report of the Independent Advisory Group chaired by Sir Douglas Black (Black, 1984). Our terms of reference are to “assess and advise Government and the Devolved Authorities on the health effects of natural and man-made radiation in the environment and to assess the adequacy of the available data and the need for further research”.
The Black Advisory Group had been commissioned by the Minister of Health in 1983 to investigate reports of a high incidence of leukaemia occurring in young people living in the village of Seascale, 3 km from the Sellafield nuclear site and the suggestion that there might be an association between the leukaemia incidence and the radioactive discharges from Sellafield. The Advisory Group confirmed that there was a higher incidence of leukaemia in young people resident in the area but also concluded that the estimated radiation dose from the Sellafield discharges and other sources, received by the local population, could not account for the observed leukaemia incidence on the basis of knowledge available at that time. The uncertainties in the available data led the Advisory Group to make recommendations for further research and investigation.
Our First Report (COMARE, 1986), examined the implications of some further information concerning discharges of uranium oxide particles from Sellafield in the 1950s, which had not been available to the Black Advisory Group. The Committee concluded that this additional information did not change the essential conclusions of the Black report.
Our Second Report investigated the incidence of leukaemia in young people living near to the Dounreay Nuclear Establishment in Caithness, Scotland (COMARE, 1988). We found evidence of an increased incidence of leukaemia in young people in the area and although the conventional dose and risk estimates suggested that radioactive discharges could not be responsible, we noted that the raised incidence of leukaemia at both Sellafield and Dounreay tended to support the hypothesis that some feature of these two plants led to an increased risk of leukaemia in young people living in the surrounding area. The report also considered other possible explanations and recommended further investigations.
Our Third Report considered suggestions of an increased incidence of childhood cancer near the Atomic Weapons Research Establishment at Aldermaston and the Royal Ordnance Factory at Burghfield (COMARE, 1989) We found a small but statistically significant increase in registration rates of childhood leukaemia and other childhood cancers in children in the vicinity of the two sites. However, we judged that the doses from the radioactive discharges were far too low to account for the observed increase in the incidence of childhood cancer. We considered a number of possible explanations for the findings including other mechanisms by which radiation could be involved, but there was insufficient evidence to point to any one explanation, although the possibility remained that a combination of factors might be involved. Further investigations were recommended. Our Third Report concluded by saying that the distribution of cases of childhood leukaemia or other childhood cancers around nuclear installations could not be seen in proper context in the absence of comparable information about the pattern throughout the UK. We recommended, therefore, that further work be carried out to determine the national

geographical pattern of distribution of childhood cancer and that this work should be given high priority.
Our Fourth Report was the result of the Committee’s review of the dosimetric, epidemiological and other scientific data relating to the Sellafield Site and the village of Seascale, together with other relevant advances in scientific knowledge, that had become available since the publication of the report of the Black Advisory Group in 1984. In the report we concluded that there was good evidence for a continuing, significantly elevated level of all malignancies in young people (0-24) in Seascale throughout the period considered by the Black report (1963-83) and our subsequent analysis (1984-92), covering a total period of three decades. We considered the current estimate of the radiation doses to the Seascale population, from both routine and accidental discharges from Sellafield, to be too small to account for the observed excess of cases of leukaemia and NHL on the basis of current knowledge. We considered a number of other hypotheses involving radiation exposure and also those involving exposures to chemicals and infectious agents, either singly or in combination. We concluded that no single factor could account for the excess of leukaemia and NHL but that a mechanism involving infection may be a significant factor affecting the risk of leukaemia and NHL in young people in Seascale. We made five recommendations for further research, all of which were accepted by Government.
Our Fifth Report examined whether there is, or has been any unusual incidence of cancer in the vicinity of the former Greenham Common Airbase and whether there is or has been any association with local levels of radioactivity in the area. With regard to childhood cancer we have examined the local incidence of these diseases in the context of the geographical distribution of these malignancies nationwide. We have found nothing to suggest that a nuclear weapon was involved in the accident or subsequent fire that took place on 28 February 1958. In overall terms the environmental monitoring data, indicated that the levels of man-made and natural radionuclides in this area are low when compared with many other areas of the UK. We also concluded that the environmental monitoring undertaken in the past and currently is consistent with Aldermaston discharges. The finding of an excess of leukaemia in children aged 0-4 in the West Berkshire area in the current study confirms the excess observed in the studies described in our Third report. We also noted the excess of leukaemia in young people aged 0-24 in ward 2 in Newbury, but there was no significant increases of cancer in this age group in the other wards in and around Newbury. We have concluded that the levels of radiation in the local area are so low that they could not be responsible for the local incidence of childhood leukaemia. We have pointed out other factors which might explain the noted excess of childhood leukaemia, particularly those which may be associated with the social class structure of the local area. We hope to examine this further when the results of the geographical studies recommended in our Third report are complete. Part of the reason for undertaking the work in our Fifth Report was to examine the possibility that the environmental monitoring data in previously classified reports, might have had some effect on the conclusions of our Third Report. These data were not made available to us at the time. In the event, this has not altered the overall conclusions of our Third report. Nevertheless, we have expressed our concern that the failure of organisations to make available information about relevant activities constrains our ability to comply with our remit. As a result of this particular incident mechanisms have been developed whereby, should issues arise in the future where a high security classification is deemed still to be appropriate, classified information may be made available to appropriate committee members.

In our Sixth Report we summarised the work undertaken since 1995 and up until October 1998, to locate the source of the radioactive particles found in the general environment around the Dounreay Nuclear Establishment and reconsider the possible health implications of encountering these particles. We have also considered whether ingestion of these particles could be associated with the previously reported excess of leukaemia and NHL in young people living in Thurso. We noted that if individuals were to ingest particles with activities at the top of the range of those particles already found on the Dounreay foreshore, very serious acute radiation effects would occur. However, at that time very few particles had been found on the publicly accessible beach at Sandside Bay and all were of them were of low activity. We concluded that an implausibly large number of these particles would have needed to be ingested to have given rise to the known level of childhood leukaemia in the area around Dounreay. We recommended increased and regular and improved beach monitoring in the area to ensure any particles coming ashore could be found and removed.

end quote.

These people do not know the importance of the concept of adding up. To appreciate this concept of adding up radiological insults, one has to understand the role of normal background radiation exposure has in the genesis of the types of cancers being investigated by Comare from 1984 on to the present time. What a junket!