Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

Mar
06
    
Founding Statement of the Clamshell Alliance Adopted July, 1976 and reaffirmed November, 1977

Founding Statement of the Clamshell Alliance

Adopted July, 1976 and reaffirmed November, 1977

RECOGNIZING:

  1. that the survival of humankind depends upon preservation of out natural environment;
  2. that nuclear power poses a mortal threat to people and the environment;
  3. that our energy needs can be adequately met through utilization of non-nuclear energy sources;
  4. that energy should not be abused for private profit; and
  5. that people should not be exploited for private profit,

THE CLAMSHELL ALLIANCE, a New England organization, has been formed:

  1. to stop all construction of a nuclear power plant in Seabrook, New Hampshire;
  2. to assist efforts to halt nuclear plant development in New England;
  3. to re-assert the right of  citizens to be fully informed and then to decide the nature and destiny of their own communities; and
  4. to achieve these goals through direct, non-violent action, such an one-to-one dialogue, public prayer and fasting, public demonstrations, site eoccupations and other means which put life before property.
Mar
06
    
DECLARATION OF NUCLEAR RESISTANCE Revised version, adopted November, 1977, at the Clamshell Congress

DECLARATION OF NUCLEAR RESISTANCE

Revised version, adopted November, 1977, at the Clamshell Congress

 We, the member of the Clamshell Alliance, demand an immediate and permanent halt to the construction and export of nuclear power plants and facilities, and nuclear weapons and supporting technology.

Nuclear power is dangerous to all living creatures and to their natural environment. The nuclear industry is designed to concentrate profits and the control of energy resources in the hands of a powerful few, undermining basic principles of human liberty.

A nuclear power plant at Seabrook, New Hampshire, could lock our region into a suicidal path. As an affiliation of a wide range of groups and individuals, the Clamshell Alliance is unalterably opposed to the construction of this, and any other, nuclear power plant.

We recognize:

  1. that the present direction in energy research and development is based on corporate efforts to maximize profits and recoup past investments rather than on meeting our real energy needs;
  2. that there is a direct relationship between nuclear power plants and nuclear weapons. The arms industry has used the “peaceful atom” to legitimize its technology. The export of nuclear reactors makes possible the spread of nuclear bombs to nations all over the world. The possibility of nuclear thievery and sabotage of nuclear facilities poses further danger to our civil liberties and our lives;
  3. that the centralized nature of nuclear power takes control of energy from local communities and strengthens the monopoly of the utilities;
  4. that a political and economic environment committed to the nuclear age is not conducive to the development of, and implementation of, renewable energy sources. With changes in the regulatory and political climate, renewable sources of energy – such as solar technologies – would become competitive, conservation would flourish, and the alleged “need” for nuclear energy would vanish. Awareness of the fact that we live within a balanced, natural ecosystem necessitates changes in “traditional” economic and social values;
  5. that nuclear power plants have proved to be an economic catastrophe. Expensive, inefficient, and unreliable, they require immense investments of capital, and create fewer jobs, than comparable investments in conservation and solar energy;
  6. that the dangers of nuclear power plants are intolerable. They include release of “low-level” radiation – a cause of cancer and genetic disorders; the creation of deadly radioactive waste which must be completely isolated from the environment for 250,000 years; the destruction of our lakes, rivers, and oceans by thermal pollution; and the possibility of a catastrophic meltdown. No material gain, real or imagined, is worth the assault on life itself that atomic energy represents.

 We therefore demand:

  1. that not one more cent be spent on nuclear power reactors or nuclear weapons, except to dispose of those wastes already created and to decommission those plants and weapons now in existence;
  2. that our energy policy be focused on developing and implementing clean and renewable sources of energy in concert with an efficient system of recycling and conservation;
  3. that all people who lose jobs through the cancellation of nuclear construction, operation, or weapons production be offered retraining and jobs in the natural energy field at decent, union level wages;
  4. that the supply of energy should, in all cases, be controlled by the people. Private monopoly must give way to public control. In concert with public ownership, power supply should be decentralized so that environmental damage is further minimized, and so that control can revert to the local community.

We have full confidence that when the dangers and expense of nuclear energy are made known to the people, they will reject this tragic experiment which has already cost us so much in health, environmental quality, material resources, labot, and control over our own lives.

The Clamshell Alliance will continue its uncompromising opposition to any and all nuclear construction in New England and elsewhere.

Our stand is in defense of the health, safety, and general well-being of ourselves and of future generations of all life on this planet.

We therefore announce that, should construction continue at Seabrook, we will mobilize the citizenry and return to the site to blockade or occupy it until construction has ceased and the project is totally and irrevocably cancelled.

Mar
06
    
WHISTLEBLOWERS By Sharon Tracy

WHISTLEBLOWERS

By Sharon Tracy

In the early spring of 1977 I went to one of the events about nuclear power held around New England to educate the public and recruit for the occupation. I sat on a metal chair in a church basement with 20 or so strangers crowded round Judy Rubenstein as she told the terrifying story of Karen Silkwood. Judy outlined the evidence of how Silkwood had died in 1975 or so under suspicious circumstances while blowing the whistle on the Oklahoma nuclear fuel fabrication facility where she worked. She had documents with her proving the facility’s criminally lax adherence to safety regulations preventing radioactive contamination. By the time of her fatal drive to meet a New York Times reporter, Silkwood herself was contaminated by high level radiation that mysteriously appeared in the bologna in her refrigerator. (Meryl Streep portrayed Karen’s story masterfully in Silkwood some years later.) I was riveted and outraged.

Putting put my affairs in order, I joined the great occupation in April and ended up living on the Seacoast off and on for many years. During the occupation, I was support, part of the robust legal team of lawyers and non-lawyers from New England and beyond (most were card carrying members of the National Lawyers Guild and the ACLU).

            Once construction was well underway, in the mid-80s, locals started hearing some hair-raising stories about bad welds (there are miles and miles of welded pipe), negligent quality assurance, concrete set poorly, improper construction. We started a whistleblowers organization for Seabrook nuclear plant construction workers: Employees Legal Project. Remembering Silkwood, we set up a whistleblower identity protection method. Read the rest of this entry »

Mar
06
    
QUAHAUG ALLIANCE: A NATIVE THOUGHT by Oannes A. Pritzker

QUAHAUG ALLIANCE: A NATIVE THOUGHT

By Oannes A. Pritzker 

  Quahaug is the native term (Algonquin language) for the northern bivalve mollusk (Mercenaria mercenaria) commonly called a hard clam. The Quahaug inhabits inter-tidal waters of what’s now called the Atlantic coast of North America. This marine clam is honored by my indigenous people who are now called ‘American Indians.’

 The Quahaug Clam Shell was not only a major source of food to seacoast Tribal Nations, but was also the material used to make our sacred Wampum. Wampum is not just decoration for jewelry, and it was not money as Europeans wrongly think. Wampum was in fact used to make “Treaty Belts.” They depicted native laws and codes of conduct of how to respect and care for each other and our natural world relatives, what in English is called nature: animals, birds, plants, soil, trees, fish and marine life. Kinonwantaquasin, All Of Our Relations, as we say in my Wabanaki language. This is one of the most important Teachings my Nichitanganooks, my ancestors, tried to express to the Wampiskintanuk, the people from across the waters, the settlers who came to our homelands from Europe. Read the rest of this entry »

Mar
06
    
Time to Summon Our Greatest Courage by Winona LaDuke

Clamshell Alliance

By Winona LaDuke   

I remember the early morning at Seabrook, and my time in Boston. I remember the smell of the ocean and the mist on my face, and I remember faces and smells, and through that the courageous souls who helped me shape my own humanity.  I know that what we all did changed history.

Seabrook was my first anti nuclear demonstration at a nuclear power plant. I knew little about the east coast, New Hampshire seemed far away from my dorm room at Harvard,or for that matter my parents home three thousand miles away,  but I understood fundamentally that the questions being asked by the activists were the same questions we were asking in our own Indigenous territories- Who gave them the right to poison us?  And how will we stop them?  Read the rest of this entry »