CND Press Roundup Thursday 4th August 2022

Posted: 4th August 2022

War in Ukraine / NATO

  • The situation at the Zaporizhzhia is “completely out of control” and experiencing a “catalogue of things that should never be happening in any nuclear facility,” the UN nuclear watchdog’s chief Rafeal Grossi warned Wednesday. Noting that “every principle of nuclear safety has been violated,” Grossi added that communication with the Russian-controlled plant had been patchy and his agency – the IAEA – was unsure if the Ukrainian technicians running the site had all the parts and equipment to ensure the reactors were operating safely. He reiterated a call for IAEA inspectors to be allowed to visit the plant to properly assess the situation. It comes as Russian troops shelled the city of Nikopol – located across the Dnieper river from the plant in fighting with Ukrainian troops.


  • This opinion piece from ICAN’s Ira Helfand asks: Are the US and Russia deliberately trying to wreck the NPT? He calls on the world to demand “that Russia and NATO state unequivocally that they will not use nuclear weapons” and says that the myth of deterrence has been busted by the nuclear threats made over Ukraine – “The current threats by Russia and NATO reveal the truth: Nuclear-armed states possess these weapons to threaten and bully the rest of the world — and they are prepared to use them. As former Defense Secretary Robert McNamara famously observed, we have not avoided nuclear war because of sound doctrine or wise leaders or infallible technology. “We lucked out,” he said. ‘It was luck that prevented nuclear war.’”

  • CNN also runs an opinion picking up on warnings made by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at the NPT review conference – that a nuclear catastrophe is just one miscalculation away.

UK Nuclear Energy

  • Lancashire Live covers the ongoing search for a suitable site to build an underground nuclear waste dump off the Cumbrian coast. While “local concerns” are mentioned in the article, it doesn’t have comments from any groups opposed to the dump.

  • Money Week looks at the return of nuclear energy and how best to invest: “The easiest way to get exposure to the nuclear industry is through investing in nuclear fuel – uranium. And uranium has taken off strongly in the last few years. What’s interesting now from an investment point of view, though, is that uranium-related stocks have sold off in line with the rest of the commodities sector.”

  • Electrical Review recently held a panel discussion on whether nuclear energy can help Britain achieve net zero. You can watch it here.

Nuclear Energy

  • Germany’s Chancellor Olaf Shultz has said extending the life of the country’s three remaining nuclear plants “makes sense” as the country braces for a winter fuel shortage. Shultz was answering questions on what he’d say to European leaders urging Germany to keep its nuclear plants running beyond the shutdown scheduled for the end of December. However, he noted that Germany only gets a small proportion of its energy from nuclear and authorities would make a decision on keeping them running after stress tests on Germany’s electricity system were completed.

  • The Times looks at the troubles facing France’s nuclear stations as soaring river temperatures, caused by a prolonged heat wave, severely limits its ability to cool its reactors. Usually an energy exporter, France’s nuclear supply problems have been compounded by safety issues and maintenance checks, resulting in France having to import energy from Britain.

  • Federal regulators in the US state of Georgia have given the go-aheadfor a new nuclear power plant project to start loading nuclear fuel into one of its reactors.

  • The Turkish government said it will intervene to try and resolve a dispute between Russia’s nuclear energy giant Rosatom and a Turkish firm subcontracted to carry out construction work on a $20 billion nuclear project in southern Turkey. IC Ictas, is suing Rosatom unit, Akkuyu Nukleer, after the latter terminated a contract with ICI only to sign a fresh one with a Russian consortium. The reason for terminating the ICI contract remains unknown.


  • Counterpunch has a piece looking at the promises made by proponents of small modular reactors. It looks at the economics and costs of nuclear energy, the lengthy timelines of getting these reactors up and running, and the concerns over waste, proliferation and safety. The conclusion?: “there are good reasons to expect that small modular reactors will not solve the challenges confronting nuclear power. In particular, they are not economical and thus will fail commercially. Other claims are also often unfounded.”


  • First Light Fusion, an Oxford-based startup, is seeking £400 million in financing to fund the next stage of its research. The firm announced a major breakthrough earlier this year when it achieved a sustained fusion reaction using its method of firing projectiles at nuclear fuel.

Iran Nuclear Deal


  • Construction has commenced at the defunct Fukushima power plant of infrastructure that will facilitate a plan to pump millions of tonnes of radioactive water into the sea. The water, previously used to cool the plant’s reactors, has been stored in tanks at the site since the 2011 disaster.

Nuclear North Pacific

  • The Mirror looks at China’s nuclear-capable ballistic missiles as Beijing conducts a series of live-fire drills in response to a recent visit to Taiwan by US House of Representative Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The visit, seen as a sign of support for Taiwanese sovereignty by Washington, was met with condemnation by Beijing who consider the island a breakaway province. Not wanting to raise China’s ire further, South Korea’s president did not meet Pelosi at her next stop in Seoul.

  • And North Korea said it will never tolerate US criticism of its nuclear programme, calling the superpower the “kingpin of nuclear proliferation.” The comments were made in a statement by North Korean representatives attending the NPT review conference in New York.  

Best wishes,

Pádraig McCarrick

Press and Communications Officer
Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
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