Consensus Talks in Germany:

A NUCLEAR PLANT IS NO RADISH

From: Ilona Joerden

The first of the consensus talks between Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and a top manager of HEW, representing the Germann energy concerns, Mr. Manfred Timm ,is finished.

"Instead of using one of the most powerful arguments,the nuclear waste dilemma, in order to move heaven and earth for an early ending of nuclear power, the red-green coalition helped the nuclear concern top managment to get out of the fix and to keep nuclear reactor operations going", commented Wolfgang Ehmke from the Citizens´s Initiative for Environmental Protection, Lüchow-Dannenberg (region of Gorleben).   The red-green coalition in Bonn gave up too easily on the prohibition of reprocessing nuclear waste, jeopardizing the historical chance to end nuclear energy and provoking a nuclear relapse: The two consensus leaders agreed on individually modified deals about each nuclear plant concerning reprocessing and total operation time - that is "anlagenbezogne Beendigung" : Reprocessing of nuclear waste won´t be prohibited as long as there isn´t built a new nuclear waste storage depot at(or near?)each nuclear plant. This agreement results in at least 5-6 more years of reprocessing and nuclear transports to La Hague and Sellafield and in return transports to the Gorleben
"Zwischenlager"(HAW interim storage depot).

Decades will pass before all German nuclear plants will be closed down. Concensus leader,Mr.Manfred Timm,made the analysis:"One can´t deal at short-notice with nuclear power plants and energy production as if they were radish production of the   republic". Processing is still a legal "substitute" to "solve", that is to say, postpone the nuclear storage problems. Actually there is no need to build new nuclear storage depots, because,at least 13 out of the 19 nuclear plants provide enough space for "transport-standby"-storage as practiced before. The nuclear industry has a profitable reason to insist in the continuation of reprocessing nuclear waste, anyway. Because,processing was subventionend by about $18 billion taxfree financial reserves, the concerns would have to repay  billions in taxes in case the processing of nuclear waste is prohibited. The
concerns are excellent tax fiddlers, they have also got a monopoly and used the taxfree financial reserves to enlarge their industrial imperium. They will defend it by all means. The idea of a quick stop of nuclear waste production is beyond their logic. Stopping or not stopping nuclear environmental crimes has become a question,not of political responsibility, but of acceptable profit for the energy concerns. Nothing new: In an economical and legal system, which allows contracting for ruinous uranium mining, hazardous nuclear waste production including plutonium, though, it is known that there is nothing like a "safe final" nuclear waste storage depot, in such a system the logic of profit prevails. Manager Timm declared himself a democrat, who respects the primateship of politics and the intention of the new red-green government to beginn the ending of nuclear power, but he forgot to mention that the nuclear industry will define what will be considered acceptable,
profitable politics. Those who had considered these facts weren´t disillusionded by the results of the first consensus talks. They know vigilance and resistance has to grow stronger without delay to get this message through to the red-green German government:

YOU WERE ELECTED TO STOP NUCLEAR POWER NOW AND TO STONGLY PROMOTE JOBS IN A NEW NUCLEAR FREE ENERGYSYTEM, not to serve in the Jurassic Park of the nuclear
industry.

There is a lot of work to do for the entire anti-nuclear movement to make sure that in the next consensus talk (March 99) that message will be the guideline. It would be very helpful to get solidary vigilance and responses from people abroad to signal that the GERMAN government and nuclear energy concerns including COGEMA and BNFL, haven´t g ot the right to take the entire planet as their nuclear hostage.

Ilona Joerden,
joerden@bigfoot.com
living and working in anti-nuclear groups in the Gorleben region, GERMONEY

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