Up To The Hour News About The Fukushima Meltdown

Greek voters struggle to understand fallout of bailout referendum


In the space of a week Greece has slid from difficult negotiations with its creditors into full-on crisis mode with banks on life support and a seminal referendum just a heartbeat away — one that could start to unravel the country’s cherished place in the heart of the EU.

Read The Full Article Here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/greek-referendum-voters-unclear-on-question-potential-aftermath-1.3138477?cmp=rss

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Iran, World Powers Reportedly Reach Tentative Agreement On Nuclear Sanctions Relief

VIENNA (AP) — World powers and Iran have reached tentative agreement on sanctions relief for the Islamic Republic, among the most contentious issues in a long-term nuclear agreement that negotiators hope to clinch over the next several days, diplomats told The Associated Press on Saturday.

The annex, one of five meant to accompany the agreement, outlines which U.S. and international sanctions will be lifted and how quickly. Diplomats said senior officials of the seven-nation talks, which include U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, still had to sign off on the package. Still, the word of significant progress indicated the sides were moving closer to a comprehensive accord that would set a decade of restrictions on Tehran’s nuclear program in exchange for tens of billions of dollars’ in economic benefits for the Iranians.

Officials had described sanctions relief as one of the thorniest disagreements between Iran and the United States, which has led the international pressure campaign against Iran’s economy. The U.S. and much of the world fears Iran’s enrichment of uranium and other activity could be designed to make nuclear weapons; Iran says its program is meant only to generate power and for other peaceful purposes.

The diplomats, who weren’t authorized to speak publicly on this past week’s confidential negotiations in Vienna, said the sanctions annex was completed this week by experts from Iran and the six world powers it is negotiating with: the United States, Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia. They did not provide details of the agreement.

A senior U.S. official did not dispute the diplomats’ account but said work remained to be done before the issue could be described as finalized.

Negotiators are striving to wrap up the deal by July 7.

Along with inspection guidelines and rules governing Iran’s research and development of advanced nuclear technology, the sanctions annex of the agreement had been among the toughest issues remaining to be resolved.

Iranian officials, including Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, have made repeated demands for economic penalties to be lifted shortly after a deal is reached. Washington and its partners have said they’d take action after Iran verifiably complies with restrictions on enrichment and other elements of the nuclear program.

Much of the negotiation on the matter has concerned sequencing, so that both sides can legitimately claim to have gotten their way.

Several other matters related to sanctions also had posed problems.

The Obama administration cannot move too quickly to remove economic penalties because of Congress, which will have a 30-day review period for any agreement during which no sanctions can be waived.

American officials also had been struggling to separate the “nuclear-related” sanctions it is prepared to suspend from those it wishes to keep, including measures designed to counteract Iranian ballistic missile efforts, human rights violations and support for U.S.-designated terrorist organizations.

And to keep pressure on Iran, world powers had been hoping to finalize a system for snapping suspended sanctions back into force if Iran cheats on the accord. Russia has traditionally opposed any plan that would see them lose their U.N. veto power and a senior Russian negotiator said only this week that his government rejected any automatic “snapback” of sanctions.


Associated Press Diplomatic Writer Matthew Lee contributed to this report.

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‘We’ve never been closer’ to nuclear deal, Iranian foreign minister says

Javad Zarif

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says Iran and world powers have never been closer to a nuclear deal, but there is still no guarantee of success.

Read The Full Article Here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/iran-nuclear-deal-within-sight-foreign-minister-says-1.3138427?cmp=rss

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Iran says nuclear deal could lead to co-operation in fight against extremism

Javad Zarif

In a message to Washington Friday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called for a resolution to nuclear talks, suggesting an acceptable deal will allow co-operation on fighting Middle East extremism threatening both nations’ interests.

Read The Full Article Here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/iran-says-nuclear-deal-could-lead-to-co-operation-in-fight-against-extremism-1.3138254?cmp=rss

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NYPD Officers to Wear ‘Radiation Detection Monitors’ on 4th of July – Fears of DIRTY BOMB ATTACK!

Gateway Pundit | Several thousand New York City uniformed and plain clothes officers will patrol the city this weekend.

Read The Full Article Here: http://www.prisonplanet.com/nypd-officers-to-wear-radiation-detection-monitors-on-4th-of-july-fears-of-dirty-bomb-attack.html

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A Machine to Make Nuclear Power Plants “Safer?”

by Andy Tully / Oilprice.com

[EF! Newswire Editor’s Note: Due to our slacking in creating a general statement regarding how we do not support, condone, or condemn, but remain neutral to all content posted here, let it be said that this article is for general information purposes for any and all who may deem this information useful or interesting, etc.]

Areva Corp Headquarters in Courbevoie, France

Areva Corp Headquarters in Courbevoie, France

No, RIANA isn’t a pop star (she spells her name differently), but it could become extremely popular, especially among the nuclear energy crowd.

RIANA is the acronym for Robot for Investigations and Assessments of Nuclear Areas. Definitely not too sexy for its shirt, or any other item of clothing, but potentially valuable if you run an atomic power plant and need a mobile tool that can operate in radioactive environments to map, sample and measure radioactivity.

The robot was developed by the French energy engineering company Areva Corp. to be what the firm calls the “Swiss army knife of nuclear robotics.” It’s basically a mechanized platform that can shoulder interchangeable devices, some of which measure radioactive material, some of which merely sample it to map “hot” areas.

RIANA can be equipped either with four-wheel propulsion or with caterpillar tracks. Built in are three-dimensional and thermal cameras so that it can illustrate its environment immediately to its human controllers. It even has lasers that detect and help it avoid obstacles, and also help it situate itself accurately in tight spaces.

And most important, it’s not just a work in progress, it’s ready to use. Areva says the first model of RIANA has been delivered to France’s Atomic Energy Commission (AEC). The AEC says it is so impressed that it’s already ordered a second model with even more features, and some nuclear power plant operators have expressed interest in buying the robot.

RIANA’s talents have been in development for three years. In 2012, Areva chose Energid Technologies Corp. of Cambridge, Mass., to adapt its robotic operating system, called Actin, to the French machine. The software originally was developed for NASA to simplify the interface between space robots and their human controllers.

The robot’s Human-Machine Interface, as it is called, is derived from a technology that allows RIANA’s controllers to intervene while the device is in the middle of a chore. In fact, Areva says RIANA’s work “can be executed without necessarily requiring the presence of an operator – an optional guidance program allows the robot to find its own way and to work on a site autonomously.”

Even a break in communications won’t scrub a mission, according to Areva. In that case, the robot can be guided autonomously back to its last known location, just as if it were being directed by a human operator.

Thierry Varet, the technical director of Areva’s Dismantling & Services department, said RIANA would be well-suited for dismantling nuclear operations, especially in cases where radiation levels are dangerous for humans.

In sum, Varet says, “AREVA has extensive experience in the development of this type of technology and offers a broad catalog of complementary robotic devices that are designed to work together.”

Read The Full Article Here: http://earthfirstjournal.org/newswire/2015/07/03/a-machine-to-make-nuclear-power-plants-safer/

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Bond Technologies Closing The Lid (Literally) On Nuclear Waste With Posiva Oy Contract

In northern Indiana, due east from Chicago, a small start-up company with eight employees is touting a metal-joining process said to create a seal “much stronger than traditional welding methods,” according to the Elkhart, Indiana, Truth, a hometown newspaper that should have truth high on…(read more)

Read The Full Article Here: http://nuclearstreet.com/nuclear_power_industry_news/b/nuclear_power_news/archive/2015/07/03/bond-technologies-closing-the-lid-_2800_literally_2900_-on-nuclear-waste-with-posiva-oy-contract-070302.aspx

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Radioactivity Detected in 2 Places at Czech Nuclear Plant

Radioactivity unexpectedly detected in 2 places at Czech Temelin nuclear plant, no safety risk

Read The Full Article Here: http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/radioactivity-detected-places-czech-nuclear-plant-32205974

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BBC: People taken from movie theater by police, forced to go in reactor and deal with burning fuel rods — TV: Military picked men off street to battle meltdown — Women, minorities, homeless, and prisoners used by nuclear industry for most dangerous work (VIDEO)

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World Leaders Nearing The Finish Line On Iran Nuclear Deal

* Kerry, Zarif see progress, but tough issues remain
* Talks set to run until July 7
* China and Russia optimistic on prospects for deal
* Concerns still remain over Iran’s past activities (Adds Kerry, Zarif quotes; details, background)
By John Irish and Louis Charbonneau
VIENNA, July 3 (Reuters) – A year and half of nuclear talks between Iran and major powers were creeping towards the finish line on Friday as negotiators wrestled with sticking points including questions about Tehran’s past atomic research.
Iran is in talks with the United States and five other powers – Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia – on an agreement to curtail its nuclear program in exchange for relief from economic sanctions.
“We are coming to the end,” said a senior Western diplomat, who added there was no plan to carry on for long past next Tuesday. “Either we get an agreement or we don’t,” he said, adding that the process “remains quite difficult.”
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif seemed to be reading from the same script as they spoke to reporters before a meeting with their top aides on Friday evening.
“We are making progress,” Kerry said. “We have a lot of work to do. There are some tough issues, but (there’s a) genuine effort by everybody.”
Zarif added: “I agree. We are all trying very hard in order to be able to move forward and we have made some progress. There are still tough issues to discuss.”
Still, all sides say a deal is within reach. U.S., European and Iranian officials, including U.S. Under Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Iranian deputy foreign ministers Abbas Araqchi and Majid Takhteravanchi, held a six-hour negotiating session that ended at 3 a.m. on Friday, a senior U.S. official said.
Russia’s chief negotiator Sergei Ryabkov said the text of the agreement was more than 90 percent complete. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi voiced confidence that the parties would reach a mutually acceptable accord.
The negotiators missed a June 30 deadline for a final agreement, but have given themselves until July 7, and foreign ministers not already in Vienna are due to return on Sunday for a final push.
A deal, if agreed, would require Iran to severely curtail uranium enrichment work for more than a decade to ensure it would need at least one year’s “breakout time” to produce enough highly enriched uranium for a single weapon, compared with current estimates of two to three months.
Western and Iranian officials said there were signs of a compromise emerging on one of the major sticking points: access to Iranian sites to monitor compliance with a future agreement.
Another potential compromise emerging relates to Iran’s low enriched uranium stockpiles. Western and Iranian diplomats said Tehran was considering shipping most of the stockpile out of the country, something Tehran had previously ruled out.
A senior Iranian official in Vienna said on Thursday that Iran would sign up to an IAEA inspection regime called the Additional Protocol, which would be provisionally implemented at the start of a deal and later ratified by Iran’s parliament.
The Protocol allows IAEA inspectors increased access to sites where they suspect nuclear activity is taking place, but U.S. officials say it is insufficient because Iran has in the past stalled by dragging out negotiations over access requests.
The Iranian official said Iran could also agree to a system of “managed access” – which is strictly limited to protect legitimate military or industrial secrets – to relevant military sites.
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the power to block a deal, last week ruled out either a long freeze of sensitive nuclear work or opening military sites to inspectors.
A Western diplomat told Reuters: “The positions set out by Khamenei last week make it more difficult to bridge the gaps in the next few days, and there is still work to be done.”
The issue of Iran’s past nuclear research is also difficult.
Yukiya Amano, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), on Thursday met Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and other officials in Tehran to discuss the IAEA’s unresolved questions.
But on Friday he said in a statement that there had been no breakthrough and “more work will be needed.”
Western diplomats said they were not demanding a public confession that Iran had conducted research into building a nuclear warhead, but that the IAEA had to be satisfied it knew the full scope of past Iranian activity to establish a credible basis for future monitoring.
Officials close to the Vienna talks say the suspension of some sanctions will be tied to resolving this issue. “It’s time to close this chapter,” the senior Western diplomat said.
Other sticking points include the timing of the suspension of sanctions, and Iranian acceptance of a plan to restore U.S., European Union and United Nations sanctions if Tehran fails to comply with the terms of the agreement. (Additional reporting by Parisa Hafezi, Arshad Mohammed and Shadia Nasralla; Writing by Louis Charbonneau; Editing by Kevin Liffey and Anna Willard)

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