Heavy anti-nuclear protests in Germany

These past days there have been heavy protests and blockades in Germany against a train carrying nuclear waste from France. Der Spiegel writes:

"A train loaded with radioactive waste ended its controversial journey through Germany on Monday. Its path had been blocked by up to 50,000 protesters over the weekend, sparking violent clashes between police and anti-nuclear activists."

Chancellor Angela Merkel's decision to, despite very strong public opposition, extend the lifespan of Germany's 17 nuclear reactors has helped highlight the issue of these nuclear waste trains. See my post from last year regarding this matter: Atomkraft? Nein danke! 50.000 people protest against nuclear energy in Germany. The anti-nuclear organizations in Germany have as a result of this seen the largest mobilization of protesters in recent years this past weekend. And the protests are expected to continue with severe long-term political consequences for Merkel and her political pro-nuclear friends in the coming elections. Apparently the current right-wing coalition in Germany never imagined that there would be this much and strong opposition against nuclear energy in Germany. An energy source that is expensive, dangerous, not cost-effective and will worsen climate change.

Kumi Naidoo, Executive Director of Greenpeace International, held a speech (see video) in front of around 50 000 protesters in Dannenberg, Germany, where he lashed out against the CASTOR nuclear waste transports which he called "an example of the nuclear madness" which must be stopped. Naidoo called on Merkel and Germany to end their investments in an "outdated" and "obsolete" energy source and instead focus on a "real energy revolution", a successful renewable energy sector which currently employs 380 000 people in Germany:

" The CASTOR nuclear waste transport is an example of the nuclear madness that must end. It is a train convoy carrying eleven 100-tonne containers of radioactive waste that is reprocessed in France and returns to Germany each year for storage. Measurements of these eleven containers done by ANDRA (National Agency for Radioactive Waste Management) show that the radioactivity in each container is higher than what was released at Chernobyl in 1986 - this makes the CASTOR transport effectively a Chernobyl on wheels.

The final destination for this dangerous convoy is Gorleben, Germany - where it is to be placed in a storage facility that is completely geologically unsuitable. Of course, there is no suitable storage site for nuclear waste - the nuclear industry has no permanent solution for the problem of radioactive waste."

Video of the “nuclear train clashes” in Germany:


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Simon Leufstedt
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Guest Simon Leufstedt

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One of the more awesome actions taken by the protesters during these days must have been this fake beer truck that was used to fool the police and block the nuclear transport:

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Guest miere de albine

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However, and these people should listen. Just so we can consider that a genuine democracy. People have a right to protest and get some things in this endeavor. No one took to the streets that go too well. Authorities if they understand this and will listen to people's wishes, then everything will be perfect.

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Guest Stephanie Lai

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Nuclear has been one of the most destructive impact to the earth we are living in. As we can see in the wars in the last several decades, it deprived millions of lives and seriously polluted the planet. Not only in Germany but also every corner of the world, there should be people rising up to support the abandon of nuclear energy since it is so dangerous to the world. For the nuclear waste, it has to be handled very carefully. If there are leakage from these waste, severe and dangerous consequences could be led and unlimited lives would be killed.

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