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CNN and Huffington Post Are “External Stakeholders” In Nuclear Regulatory Commission Washington’s Blog

CNN and Huffington Post Are “External Stakeholders” In Nuclear Regulatory Commission Washington’s Blog.

Painting by Anthony Freda: www.AnthonyFreda.com

 

Presstitute Media Shills for Nuclear Power

It is well-documented that the claim that nuclear power is a low-carbon source of energy is merepropaganda.

The archaic nuclear reactor design used at Fukushima and in most reactors in the United States and throughout the world was chosen solely because it helps to make nuclear bombs.

Our health has been sacrificed – and the dangers of radiation covered up – for 68 years … for the sake of nuclear weapons.

The mainstream media – and gatekeeper “alternative” media – are pro-war. They may occasionally criticize one tiny aspect of the war-fighting machinery, but never the overall war effort.

As such, it should not be entirely surprising that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission lists CNN and Huffington Post as “external stakeholders” in the NRC.

As EneNews reports:

Independent Evaluation of NRC’s Use and Security of Social Media, Office of the Inspector General, Jan. 2013:

Social Media Evaluation Interview List [Appendix VI, pg. 82]

  • Internal Stakeholders (NRC staff) […]
  • External Stakeholders (Press) Energy Editor, AOL, Huffington Post — Nuclear Writer, Huffington Post — Producer, CNN News
  • External Stakeholders (Digital Influencers) Blogger, Atomic Power Review — Blogger, Idaho Samizdat: Nuke Notes — Blogger, Yes Vermont Yankee
  • External Stakeholders (Nuclear Industry) […] Senior Manager for Social — Media, Nuclear Energy Institute […]
  • External Stakeholders (US Government and US Senate Staff) US-CERT Representative, United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team — Policy Director, US Senate ….

Excerpts from the evaluation:

  • As part of the press, I have to be able to quickly communicate a lot of technical information into something our readers will grasp. But it helps if NRC had strong info graphics or a section that provided a breakdown of technical info so I can understand the translation from its source. — Huffington Post
  • NRC‘s materials are very basic and not very viral. Other agencies do a better job of including information graphics, photos, even clickable links. There‘s no extra. It‘s not influential. — Managing Editor, Huffington Post
  • One producer from Cable News Network (CNN) suggested that what was currently offered on Flickr does not compel him to return and urged NRC to provide more content that did not involve people in a conference room or of the chairperson speaking from a podium.

Read the report here (pdf)

See also: Paper: CNN’s nuclear propaganda film “is dishonest to its core” — It’s “actually an infomercial”

Remember, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is a pro-industry group which is largely funded by the nuclear companies. (This is true of all nuclear agencies).

The nuclear industry in Japan – and elsewhere – spends more on pr than on safety measures.  Indeed, nuclear power is a form of crony capitalism, where taxpayers fund a market which would not even exist in a free market.

The presstitute media once again shills for the powers-that-be.

 

Russia Stations Tactical, Nuclear-Capable Missiles Along Polish Border | Zero Hedge

Russia Stations Tactical, Nuclear-Capable Missiles Along Polish Border | Zero Hedge.

“Russia will deploy Iskander missile systems in its enclave in Kaliningrad to neutralize, if necessary, the anti-ballistic missile system in Europe.”

– Dmitry Medvedev, former Russian president, November 2008 in his first presidential address to the Russian people

2013 was a year when Europe tried to reallign its primary source of natgas energy, from Gazpromia to Qatar, and failed. More importantly, it was a year in which Russia’s Vladimir Putin undisputedly won every foreign relations conflict that involved Russian national interests, to the sheer humiliation of both John Kerry and Francois Hollande. However, it seems the former KGB spy had a Plan B in case things escalated out of control, one that fits with what we wrote a few days ago when we reported that “Russia casually announces it will use nukes if attacked.” Namely, as Bloomberg reports citing Bild, Russia quietly stationed a double-digit number of SS-26 Stone, aka Iskander, tactical, nuclear-capable short-range missiles near the Polish border.

The range of the Iskander rockets:

From Bloomberg:

  • Russia has stationed missiles with a range of about 500 kilometers in its Kaliningrad enclave and along its border with the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, Germany’s Bild-Zeitung reports, citing defense officials it didn’t identify.
  • Satellite images show a “double-digit” amount of mobile units identified as SS-26 Stone in NATO code
  • Missiles were stationed within the past 12 months
  • SS-26 can carry conventional as well as nuclear warheads

In other words, Russian quietly has come through on its threat issued in April 2012, when it warned it would deploy Iskander missiles that could target US missile defense systems in Poland. From RIA at the time:

Moscow reiterated on Tuesday it may deploy Iskander theater ballistic missiles in the Baltic exclave of Kaliningrad that will be capable of effectively engaging elements of the U.S. missile defense system in Poland.

NATO members agreed to create a missile shield over Europe to protect it against ballistic missiles launched by so-called rogue states, for example Iran and North Korea, at a summit in Lisbon, Portugal, in 2010.

The missile defense system in Poland does not jeopardize Russia’s nuclear forces, Army General Nikolai Makarov, chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, said. 

“However, if it is modernized…it could affect our nuclear capability and in that case a political decision may be made to deploy Iskander systems in the Kaliningrad region,” he said in an interview with RT television.

But that will be a political decision,” he stressed. “So far there is no such need.”

Looks like a little over a year later, the “political decision” was taken as the need is there. But why does Russia need to send a very clear message of escalation at a time when the Cold War is long over, when globalization and free trade, promote game theoretic world peace (or “piece” as the Obama administration wouldsay), oh, and when Russia quietly has decided to reestablish the former USSR starting with the Ukraine.

We’ll leave the rhetorical question logically unanswered.

 

Arkansas Nuclear Facility Offline Following Fire, Possible Explosion | Zero Hedge

Arkansas Nuclear Facility Offline Following Fire, Possible Explosion | Zero Hedge.

No tsunami or earthquake but Entergy’s Arkansas nuclear facility is offline…

  • *ENTERGY: ARKANSAS NUCLEAR ONE OFFLINE AFTER TRANSFORMER FIRE
  • *ENTERGY SAYS UNIT 2 OFFLINE, UNIT 1 REMAINS ONLINE

Reassuringly, Entergy explains there was “no damage to the actual nuclear reactor,” for now.

 

Via ArkansasOnline,

Authorities are responding to a fire that was reported Monday morning at an Entergy auxiliary transformer at Arkansas Nuclear One Unit Two in Russellville, company spokesman Mike Bowling said.

 

The blaze started about 7:50 a.m. after there was a “fault in the transformer that resulted in the fire,” Bowling said.

 

The facility’s Unit Two is offline, but Unit One is still online, Bowling said. No injuries have been reported, and the fire has been contained.

 

The auxiliary transformer is an electrical device that transfers energy and is not a nuclear portion of the plant, Bowling said.

 

The London Fire Department and Entergy’s onsite responders are working the scene.

 

Arkansas Department of Emergency Management spokesman Tommy Jackson said that the fire was not extinguished within the 15 minutes of detection.

 

“The auxiliary transformer exploded in Unit Two, and there was fire within the protected area,” he said.

 

Gov. Mike Beebe said after a speech Monday at the Arkansas Electric Cooperatives Directors’ Winter Conference in Little Rock that he had been briefed on the fire and that there was “no damage to the actual nuclear reactor.”

 

Ontario to refurbish existing nuclear reactors, not build new | Canada | Reuters

Ontario to refurbish existing nuclear reactors, not build new | Canada | Reuters.

Canada geese stand near the troubled Ontario Hydro Pickering nuclear power station August 13, 1997.
1 of 1Full Size

(Reuters) – The province of Ontario plans to refurbish units at the Darlington and Bruce nuclear power plants but no longer wants to build new reactors, according to its 2013 long-term energy plan.

Instead the Energy Ministry said in the plan released this week it will encourage conservation and demand management programs before building new generation.

The Ministry said consumer costs will still rise under the new plan but less than in the last plan in 2010, even though Ontario will phase out its coal-fired generation by the end of 2014.

According to the new plan, residential power bills are expected to rise about 2.8 percent a year for the next 20 years, down from a forecast increase of 3.5 percent under the 2010 plan, the Ministry said.

Under the current plan, residential bills will rise to C$178 in 2018 from about C$138 a month in 2013. The 2010 plan forecast residential bills would reach C$191 a month in 2018.

The Ministry forecast Ontario’s energy mix in 2025 at 42 percent nuclear, 46 percent renewable, and 12 percent natural gas. None would come from coal.

In 2013, Ontario produced 59 percent of its power from nuclear, 28 percent from renewable, 11 percent from natural gas and 2 percent from coal.

Ontario Power Generation (OPG), the province-owned power generator, has said it wants to refurbish the four reactors at its 3,512-megawatt Darlington plant, located along Lake Ontario about 70 km (43 miles) east of Toronto, to keep them running for another 25 to 30 years.

Under the latest plan, the Energy Ministry said OPG will work on Darlington 2 in 2016-2019, Unit 1 in 2019-2022, Unit 3 in 2021-2024 and Unit 4 in 2022-2025.

The Ministry has estimated the Darlington refurbishment cost at about C$6 billion to C$10 billion.

OPG also operates the 3,100-MW Pickering nuclear plant along Lake Ontario, about 40 km east (24 miles) of Toronto. OPG said it plans to spend about C$200 million to refurbish four of the six reactors at Pickering, Units 5-8, to keep them running through 2020, when the entire plant will retire.

The Ministry said OPG could retire some Pickering reactors sooner than 2020, depending on projected demand, the progress of fleet refurbishment and the completion of a new substation in Clarington.

Hydro One, the province-owned transmission company, expects to complete the Clarington substation, located between Pickering and Darlington, by 2017, according to the Ministry.

NO NEW REACTORS

OPG had been looking to build two new reactors at Darlington, and in 2012 signed agreements with Westinghouse Electric, a unit of Japanese multinational Toshiba Corp, and SNC Lavalin Group Inc’s Candu Energy to prepare cost estimates.

The Energy Ministry said the deferral of the new reactors in the new plan reduced capital expenditures by up to C$15 billion.

Bruce Power, the other nuclear operator in Ontario, decided not to pursue construction of new reactors in 2009 due in part to weak market conditions.

Over the past few months, Bruce said it was ready to invest billions to refurbish the eight reactors at its 6,300-MW Bruce plant to keep them running through 2040. Bruce is located in Tiverton, about 225 km (139 miles) west of Toronto along Lake Huron.

The Energy Ministry said Bruce will work on Bruce 4 in 2016-2020, Unit 3 in 2019-2022, Unit 5 in 2022-2025, Unit 6 in 2024-2027, Unit 7 in 2026-2029 and Unit 8 in 2028-2031.

In September, Bruce said it was investing C$430 million to overhaul the 750-MW Units 2 and 3 during future planned outages to extend the reactors’ lives.

Bruce Power is partnership between TransCanada Corp; Cameco Corp; Borealis Infrastructure Management, a division of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System; the Power Workers’ Union; the Society of Energy Professionals; and a majority of Bruce Power’s employees.

(Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

 

A Confused World Reacts To The Iran Nuclear Deal | Zero Hedge

A Confused World Reacts To The Iran Nuclear Deal | Zero Hedge.

The following statement was made by British Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain, on September 30, 1938 in front of #10 Downing Street, London, after his arrival home from the notorious Munich Conference of 1938.

We, the German Fuhrer and Chancellor, and the British Prime Minister, have had a further meeting today and are agreed in recognizing that the question of Anglo-German relations is of the first importance for our two countries and for Europe.

 

We regard the agreement signed last night and the Anglo-German Naval Agreement as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again.

 

We are resolved that the method of consultation shall be the method adopted to deal with any other questions that may concern our two countries, and we are determined to continue our efforts to remove possible sources of difference, and thus to contribute to assure the peace of Europe.

 

My good friends, for the second time in our history, a British Prime Minister has returned from Germany bringing peace with honor. I believe it is “peace for our time.” Go home and get a nice quiet sleep

75 years later, last night appeasement came to Iran:

(L to R) British foreign secretary, German foreign minister, EU foreign policy chief, Iran’s foreign minister, Chinese foreign minister, US secretary of state and Russian and French foreign ministers in Geneva on November 24, 2013.

It remains to be seen if appeasing Iran will lead to yet another anschluss or worse, but for now one thing is certain: nobody really knows what to make of last night’s historic nuclear “deal” with Iran. Because when even the two main participants are unable to agree on what was decided…

Now, THAT’s “win-win” diplomacy —> pic.twitter.com/5zbI5Db6Kh

— Nima Shirazi (@WideAsleepNima) November 24, 2013

… how is everyone else expected to fare any better?

In any case, here is a sampling of the immediate reactions, most of which were as expected. First, Israel:

  • Israel Foreign Minister Lieberman: Iran’s greatest diplomatic victory since the Islamic revolution

Which is a good thing right? Wrong:

What was concluded in Geneva last night is not a historic agreement, it’s a historic mistake,” Netanyahu said. “It’s not made the world a safer place. Like the agreement with North Korea in 2005, this agreement has made the world a much more dangerous place.”

Not surprisingly, Israel hates any deal that diffuses tension in the region and lowers the probability of war. Iran, on the other hand was giddy:

Hassan Rouhani hails nuclear deal as turning point for Iran

 

A smiling Hassan Rouhani stepped on to the spiral staircase of the presidential palace to announce to an anxious nation the first nuclear deal reached with world powers in a decade – a major achievement which capped his first 100 days in office.

Departing from the austere conference hall press events of his predecessors, and opting instead for a White House Rose Garden-style appearance, he declared that the Islamic Republic had won global powers’ recognition of Iran’s right to enrich uranium.

 

Billing it as a turning point for Iran – both internationally and at home – the centrist president elected on the hope of ending Iran’s isolation and fixing a collapsing economy made the most of the little sanctions relief offered by the Geneva agreement. Putting his own spin on the deal – and along the way directly contradicting American officials’ assertions – Mr Rouhani said the sanctions regime “had been broken” by the agreement, “whether others like it or not”. With the passage of time, he predicted, the cracks “will widen.”

 

In another sign of his media savvy as president, Mr Rouhani produced relatives and children of four scientists killed since 2010, part of a covert war against the nuclear programme. Each family was presented with a roll of honour.

 

Mr Rouhani reserved some of his final words for the supreme leader, declaring his appreciation for the Ayatollah’s guidance and stressing that negotiators had worked within these guidelines.

A delighted Rouhani promptly took to twitter:

“The important part of the agreement is the recognition of #Iran‘s enrichment that has fortunately been described in a four-page document.”

— Dr. Hassan Rouhani (@drRouhani) November 24, 2013

“The important part of the agreement is the recognition of #Iran‘s enrichment that has fortunately been described in a four-page document.”

— Dr. Hassan Rouhani (@drRouhani) November 24, 2013

“Congratulations to all Iranians for the failure of sanctions and acknowledgment of the right to enrich” #IranTalks pic.twitter.com/LXI566DQbM

— Dr. Hassan Rouhani (@drRouhani) November 24, 2013

In memory of Martyrs of Nuclear energy killed by west-backed terrorists 4leading #Iran 2achieving nuclear technology. pic.twitter.com/DYcdCtTPan

— Dr. Hassan Rouhani (@drRouhani) November 24, 2013

Pres. #Rouhani: “With these negotiations the world concluded that no threats can work on Iran.”
#PressConference

— Dr. Hassan Rouhani (@drRouhani) November 24, 2013

Dr. #Rouhani: “The result of these negotiations is that the P5+1 i.e. the world powers recognize Iran’s nuclear rights”
#PressConference

— Dr. Hassan Rouhani (@drRouhani) November 24, 2013

Also not surprising is that unlike last time when the deal was scuttled in the last minute due to a block by France, this time Obama made a few phone calls to his socialist peer:

  • French President Francois Hollande “welcomes the conclusion of the Geneva negotiations on Iran’s nuclear program” in e-mailed statement by his office today.
    “The accord that was reached respects the demands imposed by France on the issues of uranium storage and enrichment, suspension of new facilities, and international control”
  • Agreement “constitutes a step toward the ending of Iran’s nuclear military program, and therefore toward the normalization of our relations with Iran”
  • “France will continue to work to reach a final agreement on this issue. The intermediate accord reached last night represents an  important step in the right direction”: Hollande

The other negotiating parties hailed the deal. From Iran’s PressTV:

China, Germany and Russia have hailed the deal between Iran and the Sextet over Tehran’s nuclear energy program.

 

After more than four days of intense negotiations, Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany sealed an interim deal in Geneva on Sunday morning to pave the way for the full resolution of the West’s decade-old dispute with Iran over its nuclear energy program.

 

According to the Iranian Foreign Ministry, the deal allows Iran to continue its activities at Arak, Fordow and Natanz facilities. The agreement also stipulates that no additional sanctions will be imposed on Tehran because of its nuclear energy program.

 

China on Sunday welcomed the deal, saying the agreement with Tehran would “help safeguard peace and stability in the Middle East”.

 

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle also hailed the agreement and said the nuclear deal marks “a turning point.”

 

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also praised the deal and stressed it would benefit all sides. “Nobody lost, everyone ends up winning,” he said.

Kerry’s own spin may not have actually mentioned “peace in our time” just yet, but it was vigorous regardless:

  • “We believe very strongly that because the Iranian nuclear program is actually set backwards and is actually locked into place in critical places, that that is better for Israel than if you were just continuing to go down the road and they rush towards a nuclear weapon”
  • “The basic architecture of the sanctions is staying in place. There is very little relief. We are convinced over the next few months, we will really be able to put to the test what Iran’s intentions are,” Kerry told CNN chief political correspondent Candy Crowley.
  • “When you’re dealing with nuclear weapons, it’s not an issue of trust,” Kerry said. “Verification is the key.”

And the punchline:

  • Kerry: If Iran’s nuclear program is really only for peaceful purposes, then “prove it”

Just how does one prove they are not doing something they are not doing? Anyway, all of this is merely more theatrics. As the AP reports, the deal was prepared secretly months in advance following secret talks between the US and Iran:

The United States and Iran secretly engaged in a series of high-level, face-to-face talks over the past year, in a high-stakes diplomatic gamble by the Obama administration that paved the way for the historic deal sealed early Sunday in Geneva aimed at slowing Tehran’s nuclear program, The Associated Press has learned.

 

The discussions were kept hidden even from America’s closest friends, including its negotiating partners and Israel, until two months ago, and that may explain how the nuclear accord appeared to come together so quickly after years of stalemate and fierce hostility between Iran and the West.

 

But the secrecy of the talks may also explain some of the tensions between the U.S. and France, which earlier this month balked at a proposed deal, and with Israel, which is furious about the agreement and has angrily denounced the diplomatic outreach to Tehran.

 

The talks were held in the Middle Eastern nation of Oman and elsewhere with only a tight circle of people in the know, the AP learned. Since March, Deputy Secretary of State William Burns and Jake Sullivan, Vice President Joe Biden’s top foreign policy adviser, have met at least five times with Iranian officials.

 

The last four clandestine meetings, held since Iran’s reform-minded President Hassan Rouhani was inaugurated in August, produced much of the agreement later formally hammered out in negotiations in Geneva among the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China, Germany and Iran, said three senior administration officials. All spoke only on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss by name the highly sensitive diplomatic effort.

 

The AP was tipped to the first U.S.-Iranian meeting in March shortly after it occurred, but the White House and State Department disputed elements of the account and the AP could not confirm the meeting. The AP learned of further indications of secret diplomacy in the fall and pressed the White House and other officials further. As the Geneva talks appeared to be reaching their conclusion, senior administration officials confirmed to the AP the details of the extensive outreach.

Politics aside, Bloomberg reports on the actual elements of the deal:

Iran will get as much as $7 billion in relief from economic sanctions over six months under the first-step agreement reached today in Geneva, the Obama administration said.

 

In return for Iran limiting its nuclear program, the interim agreement provides for the release of $4.2 billion in frozen oil assets and will let Iran continue exporting oil at current levels, rather than forcing continued reductions by buyers, as would be required under current law, according to a White House statement.

 

The accord also will “suspend certain sanctions on gold and precious metals, Iran’s auto sector and Iran’s petrochemical exports, potentially providing Iran approximately $1.5 billion in revenue,” the administration said.

 

Israeli officials and some U.S. lawmakers have said sanctions should be tightened, not eased, to keep pressure on Iran. Rejecting those pleas, the U.S. and the five other countries negotiating with Iran have agreed to “not impose new nuclear-related sanctions for six months if Iran abides by its commitments under this deal, to the extent permissible within their political systems,” according to the White House statement.

 

The no-new-sanctions pledge will be tested when the U.S. Senate returns for legislative business on Dec. 9 after a Thanksgiving break. A group of 14 senators from both parties issued a statement last week pledging to “pass bipartisan Iran sanctions legislation as soon as possible.”

 

Critics of an interim accord in Congress and in Israel have predicted Iran would reap $20 billion or more in relief. U.S. officials have rejected such estimates and have said the accord won’t lift the most punishing sanctions — those on oil sales and banking. The Obama administration estimated in its statement that Iran will continue to lose $4 billion a month in crude it otherwise would have exported.

Finally, while the cynics may say this was merely yet another attempt to redirect attention from the Obamacare debacle especially since Iran’s nuclear power plants have been controlled by US-Israel made computer virus Stuxnet for years, we will one-up their cynicism and this was all merely an advertising photo op for Nike:

Close up: pic.twitter.com/pGKuPJPdYq

— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) November 24, 2013

 

Tepco Successfully Removes First Nuclear Fuel Rods at Fukushima – Bloomberg

Tepco Successfully Removes First Nuclear Fuel Rods at Fukushima – Bloomberg.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501) successfully removed the first nuclear fuel rods today from a cooling pool at the wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant, an early milestone in decommissioning the facility amid doubts about whether the rods had been damaged and posed a radiation risk.

The first of the fuel-rod assemblies at the plant’s No. 4 reactor building was transferred from an underwater rack on the fifth floor to a portable cask just before 4 p.m., the utility known as Tepco said in an e-mailed statement.

A member of the media wearing a protective suit and a mask walks in front of a fuel handling machine on the spent fuel pool inside the building housing the No. 4 reactor at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s (Tepco) Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okuma, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan on Nov. 7, 2013. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

Tepco planned to remove 22 assemblies from the pool, which contains 1,331 spent fuel assemblies and 202 unused assemblies, by the end of tomorrow, the company said. Crews are beginning with the unused assemblies because they are less fragile, spokesman Yusuke Kunikage said by phone.

The operation is the most significant test to date of Tepco’s ability to contain the threat stemming from the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl. Were the rods to break or overheat, it could prompt a self-sustained nuclear chain reaction similar to the meltdowns at three Fukushima reactors following the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

“Although moving spent fuel into long-term storage is a routine task that Tepco has taken more than 1,200 times over the years, the circumstances at Fukushima Dai-Ichi require special care,” Tepco president Naomi Hirose said in a video message on the company’s website. “The success of the extraction process therefore represents the beginning of a new and important chapter in our work.”

Workers’ Experience

Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority assigned an inspector to oversee the removals, in addition to its existing staff at the plant, and is using video monitoring of the removal, the agency said in a statement Friday.

An uncontrolled nuclear reaction due to structural failures or mishandled fuel is highly unlikely because of safeguards and workers’ experience with the procedure, Akira Ono, the Dai-Ichi plant’s chief supervisor, said at a Nov. 7 news conference at the power station.

Removing the rods, bunched in assemblies, will take place from a large shoebox-shaped structure cantilevered atop the reactor building, which was damaged in an explosion after the earthquake and tsunami. The assemblies, each holding about 80 rods, will be moved to a more secure pool on the ground.

Tepco said that it plans to complete the removal of all the fuel in the pool by the end of 2014.

 

America and Israel Created a Monster Computer Virus Which Now Threatens Nuclear Reactors Worldwide | Washington’s Blog

America and Israel Created a Monster Computer Virus Which Now Threatens Nuclear Reactors Worldwide | Washington’s Blog.

Even Threatens the International Space Station

In their obsession to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons, the U.S. and Israel created a computer virus (called “Stuxnet”) to take out Iran’s nuclear reactors.

The virus appears to have spread to other countries.

One of the world’s top computer security experts – Eugene Kaspersky – said this week that the virus has attacked a Russian nuclear reactor.   As The Register notes:

The infamous Stuxnet malware thought to have been developed by the US and Israel to disrupt Iran’s nuclear facilities, also managed to cause chaos at a Russian nuclear plant, according to Eugene Kaspersky.

The revelation came during a Q&A session after a speech at Australia’s National Press Club last week, in which he argued that those spooks responsible for “offensive technologies” don’t realise the unintended consequences of releasing malware into the wild.

“Everything you do is a boomerang,” he added. “It will get back to you.”

***

“Unfortunately, it’s very possible that other nations which are not in a conflict will be victims of cyber attacks on critical infrastructure,” said Kaspersky.

“It’s cyber space. [There are] no borders, [and many facilities share the] same systems.”

Not finished there, Kaspersky also claimed to have heard from “Russian space guys” in the know that even machines on the International Space Station had been infected “from time to time” after scientists arrived aboard with infected USBs.

Watch for yourself:

Other security experts agree.

As British security website V3 – in an article entitled “Stuxnet: UK and US nuclear plants at risk as malware spreads outside Russia” – reports:

Experts from FireEye [background] and F-Secure [background] told V3 the nature of Stuxnet means it is likely many power plants have fallen victim to the malware ….

F-Secure security analyst Sean Sullivan told V3 Stuxnet’s unpredictable nature means it has likely spread to other facilities outside of the plant mentioned by Kaspersky.

“It didn’t spread via the internet. It spread outside of its target due to a bug and so it started traveling via USB. Given the community targeted, I would not be surprised if other countries had nuclear plants with infected PCs,” he said.

Director of security strategy at FireEye, Jason Steer, mirrored Sullivan’s sentiment, adding the insecure nature of most critical infrastructure systems would make them an ideal breeding ground for Stuxnet.

***

Steer added the atypical way Stuxnet spreads and behaves, means traditional defences are ill equipped to stop, or even accurately track the malware’s movements.

“It’s highly likely that other plants globally are infected and will continue to be infected as it’s in the wild and we will see on a weekly basis businesses trying to figure out how to secure the risk of infected USB flash drives,” he said.

***

The use of XP in power plants is set to become even more dangerous as Microsoft has confirmed it will officially cut support for the 12-year-old OS in less than a year. The lack of support means XP systems will no longer receive critical security updates from Microsoft.

That’s almost as brilliant is waging a global war on terror in such an idiotic way that it is increasingterrorism …

 

Shutdown of Japan’s Last Nuclear Reactor Raises Power Concerns – Bloomberg

Shutdown of Japan’s Last Nuclear Reactor Raises Power Concerns – Bloomberg.

 

Fukushima: Japan promises swift action on nuclear cleanup | Environment | theguardian.com

Fukushima: Japan promises swift action on nuclear cleanup | Environment | theguardian.com.

 

3. Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Worse than Anticipated – The Top 25 Most Censored Stories of 2012

3. Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Worse than Anticipated – The Top 25 Most Censored Stories of 2012.

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