Tuesday, August 16, 2022

The Greens' hatred of nuclear power has played into Vladimir Putin's hands - and is based on a pack of lies about radiation deaths

Prepare for nuclear Armageddon. That is, if you believe what the likes of Greenpeace are saying about the consequences of fighting now taking place in Ukraine in the immediate vicinity of Europe's largest nuclear power plant at Zaporizhzhia.

Last week, the plant — which Russian troops seized in the first month of their invasion but is still being operated by Ukrainian civilians — was repeatedly hit in shelling attacks.

Back in March, Greenpeace, the world's most well-funded environmentalist lobbying group, declared that a war in a country which contained such a plant 'poses a risk of potentially catastrophic damage that could render vast areas of the European continent, including Russia, uninhabitable for decades'.

It's not just anti-nuclear campaigners who are warning of mass extermination. The U.S. TV network NBC last week broadcast that the 'intensifying fighting around a nuclear power plant, Europe's largest, could put swathes of the continent at risk of a radiation catastrophe'.

The Washington Post, in its editorial comment, concurred: 'At Zaporizhzhia, it is five minutes to midnight.'


The idea of shelling directed at a nuclear power station does seem like a TV drama designed to scare the living daylights out of us. But the vast majority of what passes for factual commentary on nuclear risks is actually fiction.

The reactors of the Zaporizhzhia plant (a much more advanced unit, in every way, than the Chernobyl reactor which caused the world's biggest nuclear incident in 1986) are protected by up to ten metres of concrete. They were built to withstand even a jumbo jet crashing into them.

There are no shells that could penetrate its carapace. Indeed, these colossal casings prevented any breach during the full-scale attack, involving shelling, by Russian troops when they seized the plant in March.

We must go back to the Chernobyl incident — and also what happened at the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan in March 2011 — to appreciate how wilfully exaggerated are the scare stories now being unleashed by so-called 'Green' groups ideologically opposed to what happens to be the only non-intermittent form of mass energy production which is genuinely 'zero carbon'.

After the Fukushima meltdown, the New York Times published a piece that declared: 'By now close to one million people have died of causes linked to the Chernobyl disaster' — and argued that the consequences of Fukushima could 'far exceed Chernobyl in terms of the effects on public health'.

The 2019 TV mini series Chernobyl only added to the store of public terror: it portrayed the effects of radiation as contagious, as if it were a virus.

Now let's return to the much-neglected real world, in the form of a paper by Dr Robert Gale, a professor of haematology at London's Imperial College and an authority on nuclear and radiation accidents, who participated in rescue efforts at both Chernobyl and Fukushima. Last year, Dr Gale published 'Chernobyl at 35 years: An Oncologist's Perspective'.

He noted that 'sources without scientific credentials or with a political agenda predict hundreds of thousands, or even millions of cancers and cancer deaths' as a result of the radiation exposure following the Chernobyl incident.

His research, backed by the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR), concludes that there were 'about 7,000 excess thyroid cancers in children and adolescents living in Ukraine, Belarus and Russia proximal to the accident site. Most were not fatal'.

This is not surprising as thyroid cancer has a mortality rate of two per cent.

And what of leukaemia, the cancer chiefly associated with radiation-related deaths in Japan in the wake of the nuclear attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

Dr Gale's paper declares: 'We and others looked carefully for an increase in leukemias in the ten years after the Chernobyl accident but found no convincing evidence of one.'

His conclusion: 'There are few data to suggest that radiation released from Chernobyl increased cancer globally. There are also no convincing data that birth defects or genetic abnormalities were increased by radiation, despite what you might read elsewhere.'


CBS pushes study blaming climate change for rising childhood obesity rates

EVERYTHING iscaused by global warming

“CBS Mornings” pushed a recent study connecting climate change and hotter temperatures with childhood obesity rates in a ridiculed segment on Thursday.

Co-host Nate Burleson introduced the study published in the journal “Temperature” that argued “climate change, specifically warmer temperatures is making our children more inactive and more obese.”

Burleson said the study found that children were 30% less “aerobically fit” than their parents and claimed hotter temperatures were preventing kids from exercising outside.

Although the segment focused primarily on climate change, Burleson acknowledged that technology was likely a factor in rising childhood obesity cases.

“Now listen, it has been a lot hotter, and the weather has been crazy, but I think it also has to do with technology, you know. It’s one thing not to go outside, but these kids don’t go outside because they can stay inside and be on their phones, play video games, and be social without having to go outside and be social,” Burleson said.

Several Twitter users, however, attacked the segment for emphasizing “climate change” as a factor in childhood obesity without also recognizing coronavirus lockdowns.

“Do you think it could be… nah, couldn’t be. Must be the climate change,” Deseret News contributing writer Bethany Mandel joked.

Hans Mahncke, co-host of “Truth Over News” on EpochTV, tweeted, “They made kids fat by shutting schools, playgrounds, parks and beaches. Predictably, they’re now blaming ‘climate change.’ If there aren’t severe penalties for the fraudsters who pushed lockdowns, it’ll happen again.”

“Climate change? Ffs,” National Review journalist Claude Thompson wrote.

Former congresswoman Nan Hayworth tweeted, “NO. NO. NO. Many factors contribute to children’s lack of fitness, but climate change is NOT one of them. This is propaganda that CBS, as with all ‘mainstream’ media, pushes to scare Americans into accepting Government intervention–at any cost!!–against climate *apocalypse*”

Washington Free Beacon reporter Joe Gabriel Simonson attacked “CBS Mornings” directly for misrepresenting the study to push a climate agenda.

“[T]his seemed too insane even for left-wing climate scientists so I read the study summary. the authors don’t blame climate change for children getting fatter, but that fat children may have a harder time dealing with climate change because fat people don’t do as well in the heat,” Simonson tweeted.

A study posted in the National Library of Medicine in July found that a “significant weight increase was reported in the majority of subjects,” especially those with pre-existing weight issues, during coronavirus lockdowns.

It concluded, “Data analysis clearly demonstrated the detrimental impact of COVID-19 lockdown on children and adolescents’ body weight and BMI, children with pre-existing overweight/obesity being more at risk of gaining weight.”


Eat beef, save the planet

Ian Plimer

Yet again, farmers are under attack. This time, it is the beef industry because, apparently, cattle burp and fart out methane and we’ll all fry-and-die because of the accelerated global warming produced by this methane. Is this fact or fiction? In my field of science, we often do mass balance calculations because material is added, exchanged, and lost during natural processes. Let’s do the same with the beef industry.

Grass grows by using carbon dioxide from the air as plant food. Why do climate activists want to reduce the amount of plant food in the atmosphere? Cattle eat grass, some grass remains as roots and stubble, and hence not all carbon atoms in grass end up in cattle. The carbon from grass is stored in meat, milk, intestines, bones, and skin and the amount of stored carbon increases with growth. Semi-solid waste materials from cattle fertilise grass for further recycling of carbon.

Humans are omnivores with teeth for cutting plants and animal flesh and then masticating to create a large surface area to assist digestion. We have the gut enzyme trypsin specifically for breaking down meat. Not all plant material can be broken down into nutrients which is why there is little nutritional value in us eating grass, stems, wood, or bark. Unlike cattle, humans cannot digest cellulose in grass. Bacterial and enzyme reactions in ruminant’s stomachs release the gas methane as burps and farts during digestion. This methane, a carbon-hydrogen compound, very quickly oxidises in the atmosphere to carbon dioxide and the most abundant greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, water vapour.

For me, there is nothing like medium rare beef with a matching red-coloured fluid derived from releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere by grape fermentation. The beef is digested in my body because of trypsin which breaks down meat into amino acids for circulation in my bloodstream. Meat fat ends up as brain food. Vegetarians and vegans ignore the benefits of human evolution and waste trypsin by not eating meat. In evolutionary terms, meat-eating has allowed the human brain to grow over time. In a past life when I took university student geological field trips, I noticed that the meat eaters were the first to the tops of mountains, vegetarians were struggling way behind and vegans were still trying to work out how to get out of the vehicle!

Some of the carbon in beef I eat is used and stored by my body, the rest is oxidised and exhaled. I breathe in air with 0.04 per cent carbon dioxide and exhale air with more than 4 per cent carbon dioxide. The gaseous waste product from cattle digestion is methane, and the gaseous waste product from human digestion is carbon dioxide. Some of the milk or cream I use in coffee and on morning porridge is stored in my flesh and bones as is the butter used in cooking.

When I’ve snapped my hobbles and decompose in a grave, most of my body carbon, including that from eating beef, will be released as methane and the rest will end up sequestered in soils. Blood and bone from cattle is used as a fertiliser and is sequestered in soil. Cattle skins are used to make leather which is sequestered into footwear and other leather goods. The whole process of going from grass to grave involves a carbon cycle and short-term sequestration of carbon atoms.

The number of carbon atoms returned to the atmosphere from beef farming is less than that removed by grass growth. Therefore, cattle farming and eating beef is a carbon sequestration process. If the popular mantra is used, we are saving the planet by eating beef.

If we do not eat meat, then grass decomposes anyway and releases methane into the atmosphere for oxidation to carbon dioxide and water vapour. If the grass is burned, carbon dioxide is returned to the atmosphere. The cycle of atmospheric carbon dioxide via meat production and digestion removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and then later releases this carbon dioxide back to its source. What’s the problem? Whether grass is used to grow meat, decomposed, or burned, no new carbon atoms are created in this carbon cycle and, by growing beef, some carbon atoms are removed from the cycle for short-term sequestration.

It is absolute nonsense to claim that beef farming accelerates hypothetical global warming. Carbon atoms are just being recycled. We are being conned with a scare campaign by unelected climate activists who want to control every aspect of our lives, including the source of our animal protein.

If beef is replaced on the menu by insects, then I’ll pass. I will get all my nutrients from 47 pints of Guinness, 2 glasses of milk, and one of orange juice each day.


Oxfordshire County Council’s climate crusade

Something funny is in the water in Oxfordshire. In recent months councillors there have embarked on a spree of unorthodox eco-measures, no doubt encouraged by the Green party’s gains in local elections. Back in March, TV star Jeremy Clarkson led a protest of farmers, enraged by the County Council’s decision to only provide ‘plant-based’ food at council meetings, even though it cost taxpayers more.

And now, Mr S has discovered the latest taxpayer-funded wheeze: a new website called ‘Climate Action Oxfordshire’ with some intriguing advice for the local subjects who funded it. Among its advice includes telling local residents to ‘adopt a plant-based diet’, ‘choose waste-free menstrual products’ and ‘choose ethical banking and investments.’ In a snub to Oxfordshire’s rural farming communities, the website directs users to the Vegan Society, claiming ‘With 58 per cent of our food emissions coming from animal products, consider taking the steps to go vegan.’ It also asks ‘Why not try going veggie for a month and see how it goes?’ This is despite the fact that red meat produced in Britain is among the most sustainable in the world, with cattle and sheep accounting for just 3.7 per cent of UK carbon emissions when the carbon stored in grassland is included.

Climate Action Oxfordshire also calls for divestment from fossil fuel companies and financial institutions investing in such products. It writes ‘Banks are companies that are required to make a profit. Right now, funding fossil fuels is profitable – but losing customers is not profitable. By pledging to move your money to a sustainable financial institution, you will send a message to your bank that it must defund fossil fuels.’ It also urges ‘do not be silent’ and urges ‘writing to your MP… whether that’s supporting MPs who are already supporting an environmental agenda or questioning those who could do more.’ Bet those in Westminster look forward to receiving those…

Billing itself as ‘one stop shop for tackling climate change in Oxfordshire,’ the site is endorsed by all the local authorities (including Tory-controlled Cherwell) and the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership. Launched in early July, a Freedom of Information request shows that the website attracted an average number of just 55 unique users a day in its first three weeks – a somewhat low figure for the 700,000 strong population of Oxfordshire. The Countryside Alliance is now writing to all district leaders asking them to remove their endorsements. A spokesman told Mr S that:

No council, especially one that allegedly supports our farmers should have anything to do with a website that seeks to undermine their hard work. Challenging assumptions about the benefits of some plant-based products and the casual denigration of livestock farming matters because, if they are allowed to go unchallenged they threaten the sustainability of both the planet and the countryside.

Sounds like the right-on commissars of Oxfordshire haven’t herd the last of this…


My other blogs. Main ones below

http://dissectleft.blogspot.com (DISSECTING LEFTISM )

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH)

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com/ (TONGUE-TIED)


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