Edinburgh CND News April 2019

EVENTS IN APRIL
1. Tuesday 2nd April: regular organising meeting 6pm at Peace and Justice Centre. NOTE new address: 25 Nicolson Square, Edinburgh EH8 9BX
2. Thursday 4th April: Scotland out of NATO, NATO out of Scotland. Demonstrate from 1pm to 2pm junction of Castle Street with Princes Street https://www.facebook.com/events/278894109700986/
3. Saturday 13th April: 1230, Leafleting at the East End of Princes Street: Climate Change theme

4.Edinburgh Stop the War: (a) Saturday 13th April Stop the War Coalition is very excited to be part of the Return of Lowkey Tour which starts in less than a month, touching down in towns and cities across the UK. A dedicated activist for Stop the War Coalition since our early years, Lowkey is also one of the most talented rappers on the scene today.Book the Edinburgh Gig here https://www.seetickets.com/event/lowkey/summerhall/1308474                                                (b) Monday 15th April: 7.30 – 9pm: monthly meeting. Peace and Justice Centre located at the Epworth Halls, Methodist Church, Nicolson Square

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We live in increasingly dangerous times. International norms on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament are collapsing before our eyes.
Donald Trump has trashed anti-nuclear treaties with Iran and Russia. North Korea appears no closer to denuclearising. And a new generation of nuclear weapons is being developed by all nuclear-armed states. Alarmingly, these issues are being under-reported and under-scrutinized in the media. So together we need to do everything we can to raise awareness of them, to pressure governments to de-escalate and disarm.                                  In the past two weeks, we’ve seen US bombers arrive in Britain for provocative NATO exercises ahead of the nuclear-armed alliance’s 70th anniversary. Meanwhile EDF has been forced to put off restarting two reactors at Hunterston for fear of an accident, showing the importance of our campaigning against nuclear power.                           EXTRA 03/04 Anti-nuclear campaigners have responded to a new report by the National Audit Office which highlights the Ministry of Defence’s failure to dispose of twenty obsolete nuclear submarines. Kate Hudson, CND general secretary, said:
“We welcome this very frank NAO report which puts MoD incompetence and negligence in the spotlight. The MoD is overreaching itself financially: it clearly cannot afford to buy a new nuclear weapons system and maintain its other spending requirements. Spending on Trident replacement when it can’t afford to safely dispose of old nuclear subs is grossly irresponsible.http://www.cnduk.org (for more on all stories in this section.

What are we doing? 
1. To mark the 70th anniversary of NATO, campaigners will gather at the military alliance’s London HQ in Northwood in North West London and in other places including: Glasgow (4th April, 12 noon, Buchanan Steps) and Edinburgh (see events above).
Kate Hudson, CND general secretary, said: “Since the end of the Cold War, NATO has expanded territorially, changed its mission statement from a defensive to an aggressive posture and embarked on a series of wars, of which their intervention in Afghanistan is getting on for two decades long.

STOP PRESS: https://cnduk.org/how-we-marked-70-years-too-many-at-natos-london-hq/

2. It looks like EDF (Électricité de France) is on a charm offensive of trying to normalise the unexpectedly large number of cracks in the graphite around the nuclear reactor by use of slick video. They have still not produced their safety case for restarting but perhaps it is about to happen soon. In this video released by EDF  Their efforts include normalising cracks getting wider. As Ian Fairlie pointed out to me, they are apparently proud to show a crack which widened by 1.8mm in just SIX MONTHS: 1.1mm on 23/9/2017 – 2.9mm 17/3/2018?  Crack footage begins @ 02:20 minutes in:’ https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=hlaUky_v55I HunterstonB  got a lot of publicity around the 7th – 9th of March. The BBC put out a report on the cracking that included some inaccuracies concerning jobs and demand for electricity should Hunterston B be permanently closed. Ian Fairlie and David Toke corrected this in the item below.  Ianfairlie 8th March 2019 https://www.ianfairlie.org/news/incorrect-statements-in-bbc-news-hunterston-b-pictures-show-cracks-in-ayrshire-nuclear-reactor/ https://scote3.wordpress.com

3. As part of Scottish CND ‘s campaign to Scrap Trident – Local Groups and individual members and supporters are being asked to consider taking some action under the theme of Climate not Trident. Climate change is one of the main threats the world faces today . The Earth’s increasing temperature will have devastating consequences for our world . Urgent action is needed by Scotland and the international communities to reduce carbon emissions . The Scottish share of the capital cost of Trident will be at least 5 billion pounds over the next ten years . Some of this money could be much better spent in responding to climate change by investing in things such as renewable technologies see for example https://scote3.wordpress.com   As well as the Edinburgh event on the 13th (see above) The following activities have been arranged: Friday April 5 – Ayrshire CND street Stall in Bridgegate Irvine from 1230pm- 2 pm  Friday April 5 – Scottish CND street Stall at Donald Dewar Statue in Buchanan Street Glasgow from 4 pm – 6 pm

Don’t Bank on the Bomb Scotland launched a guide to nuclear weapons divestment in Scotland last year. Since then, we have been engaging with different organisations in Scotland on the issue. As a result of our discussions with RBS Group, we learned that the bank is currently undertaking a review of its defence sector investment policy. Information about the bank’s investments in nuclear weapons and its current policy can be found in the attached notes and on our website: https://nukedivestmentscotland.org/royal-bank-of-scotland-group/ RBS Group has acknowledged the TPNW but its position is that it won’t change its policy to exclude all nuclear weapons producers unless the UK ratifies the treaty. However, the bank is concerned about reputational risk and we’ve been told that customer concerns are passed to the team undertaking the current review. So over the next couple of weeks I will be tweeting some information about RBS from the @nukedivestscot account and encouraging people to write to the bank to request that it change its policy. I will link to the template letter which is attached and on our site but it’s better if people can compose their own: Template letters and briefing sheets

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More news from CND:  1.CND is horrified at Royal Navy plans to host a National Service of Thanksgiving to mark 50 years of the so-called ‘Continuous At Sea Deterrent’ (CASD) in Westminster Abbey on the 3rd of May.  It beggars belief, but plans are still afoot for a major celebration of Britain’s Continuous at Sea Deterrent (CASD) nuclear weapons system at Westminster Abbey on May 3rd. Our campaign to pressure the Royal Navy and Church authorities to cancel the Thanksgiving Service has been widely reported in the media. Now we are now ramping up our activities.
Take action: (A) 
We invite all CND supporters to write to the Defence Secretary to tell him to cancel this repugnant service. It takes 1-minute using our lobby tool. (B) A parliamentary debate was scheduled for Wednesday 3rd May on the 50th anniversary of the Continuous At Sea Deterrence and celebrations to take place next month. It has been moved to next Wednesday 10th April and we must do everything possible to ensure that each and every Scottish MP attends.                                     2. We extend our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the victims of the truly awful attacks reported  on mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand where 49 people have been killed. CND stands with the Muslim community against racism and Islamophobia wherever it is found. We must all unite against the rise of far-right terrorism and hate and not allow their pernicious ideology to divide our communities. We must also redouble our efforts to build a world of peace. The wars Britain has been involved in over almost two decades have not only grown the threat of terrorism but they have increased the demonization of Muslims both at home and abroad. The wars must end immediately.                                                                                                                           3. Help with developing local trade union work. You can find more information in the reports and briefings in the trade unions section of the CND website, and see the leaflets we have available on the CND shop website.
4. ADDED 5th April: Anti-nuclear campaigners have responded to a new report by the Defence Committee into the breakdown of the landmark Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty. (1) Kate Hudson, CND general secretary, said: “This is a very disappointing and unbalanced report, which fails to address the new reality of a US President who is abandoning the international rules-based system.
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OTHER EVENTS:    
                                                                                                                               
1. Sunday 7 April. 1 – 4pm. Fly Kites Not Armed Drones Meadows Pavilion Cafe. Make & Fly Kites. Fun, Family Friendly. All Welcome. Volunteers Needed. There is music too, lets hope the rain keeps away.

Come along for a fun family friendly day to Make – Decorate – and Fly Kites on the Meadows. We supply kite kits and help making them or bring your own kite. Donations support Peace & Justice Centre programmes.
For the third year running Kites Not Drones is in conjunction with Refugee Community Kitchen’s Spring fundraiser: soup,crafts, music & more kids’ activities in support of RCK, still serving 1000’s of destitute refugees in northern France. Volunteers appreciated: contact the peace and justice centre. http://peaceandjustice.org.uk       1 (a) Letters for Peace – a work of music with string trio, inspired by the stories and letters of conscientious objectors who refused to fight during the First World War. St James, John’s Place, Leith – Friday 12 April, 8pm. Red Door at St Peter’s Linlithgow, Friday 26 April, 8pm. Tickets £15/£10(16 and under). 1(b) Crane-making in the Land J Sat 13th 2-4pm

2. The Basel-Stadt Canton (Switzerland) and the Basel Peace Office  have the honour to invite you to Move the Nuclear Weapons Money: Investing in a sustainable futurean international conference on divestment and other actions by cities, universities, parliaments and religious institutions to reverse the nuclear arms raceand protect the climate. A deteriorating security environment in Europe has arisen over the past few years from a number of factors including unresolved conflicts between Russia and the West, increased refugees from regions of armed conflict, impacts of climate change, challenges to the European political institutions and democracy, modernization of nuclear weapons and related military systems; and provocative war games and nuclear threat postures. This conference will bring legislators at federal, state/cantonal and city levels (parliamentarians, mayors and city councilors) to Basel to engage with security experts, financial managers and civil society representatives on key issues which are driving the regional and global nuclear arms race, and how to reverse these.  A principle focus of the conference will be on ending public investments in nuclear weapons and fossil fuel industries and encouraging sustainable investment policies and practices. Manufacturers of nuclear weapons and producers of fossil fuels are powerful lobbies moving governments to escalate the nuclear arms race and to keep pumping carbon into the atmosphere. We can change this by ending investments in the nuclear weapons and fossil fuel industries. The conference is part of the Move the Nuclear Weapons Money campaign, a global initiative to cut nuclear weapons budgets and investments, and to reinvest these to support climate protection, peace, economic development and sustainable development. PNND adds: CllrAudrey Doig, Member of the Renfrewshire City Council and Vice Chair of Nuclear Free Local Authorities Scotland, is speaking at the event.  Full programme, languages and speaker list now available. Click here to see accomodation possibilities and to register. For inquiries please contact info@baselpeaceoffice.org                                                                                                                2.(a) Basel Peace Office : invitation to the Abolition 2000 global webinar on nuclear disarmament events and campaigns, and encourages you to participate in it.
The webinar, which will take place on April 10, will provide an overview of nuclear disarmament processes and events happening in 2019, and the main nuclear disarmament campaigns and actions by parliamentarians, mayors and civil society.

3. A Friends of Faslane Peace Network a meeting has been arranged on Saturday April 13 at 2 pm in Helensburgh Parish Church Colquhoun Street Helensburgh G84 8 UP . The church is in the centre of the town and easy to get to. N.B> Scottish Christians Against Nuclear Arms are holding their annual Peace Witness on Saturday 13th April at Faslane Nuclear Base North Gate from 12:00pm until 1:00pmbefore the Friends of FPC meeting. All welcome to attend. 

4. The next ICAN in UK meeting will be held for 3 hours in the afternoon of Thursday 11 May in 1pm to 4pm at the Friends Meeting House Friargate  York YO1 9RL. AGENDA NOW AVAILABLE   N.B. One of their sister networks, INEW (International Network on Explosives Weapons) would like help and support over the coming days following their launch tomorrow of a new Parliamentary Appeal for #StopBombingCivilians

5. There is another update in the run up to the  Surround Springfields event on Saturday 27th April 2019 (the day after Chernobyl day).  Facebook event for this big day:
https://www.facebook.com/events/320014861963078/
CND adds: Britain’s nuclear power industry is in crisis, while the government is wasting billions on a strategically useless nuclear weapons system. Both industries create dangerous radioactive waste, which is processed at the Springfields plant in Lancashire. Stop New Nuclear write for this month’s magazine about a protest that has been called at the plant on April 27th. 
In this edition, you can also read about an upcoming visit to the UK by a prominent South Korean peace activist.
Read Campaign: April edition
Download Campaign: April edition
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OTHER NEWS:
1. UNFOLD ZERO encourages action to ensure the Korean peace and denuclearisation process does not unravel and return the region to the nuclear confrontation we saw as recently as 2017. Without some reciprocal good faith action by the US and the UN Security Council – such as limited sanction relief – it’s quite possble that the peace process will fail. Indeed, on March 15, North Korea’s vice minister for foreign affairs said that Pyongyang is considering halting the diplomatic process. (See Arms Control TodayWhat Comes Next in U.S.-North Korean Negotiations?)
South Korean President Moon Jae-in will meet with US President Trump on April 11 in an effort to rescue the Korean peace and denuclearisation process, which is in dire trouble following the failed summit between the US and North Korea in February this year.
The Basel Peace Office encourages you to help ensure the Korean peace and denuclearisation process does not collapse Click here for a list of contact emails of representatives of UN Security Council members plus North Korea, South Korea and Japan. If the peace process fails, the region could return to the frightening nuclear confrontation we saw in 2017.
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2. nuClear News No.115 March/April 2019 is now available for downloading at:www.no2nuclearpower.org.uk/wp/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/NuClearNewsNo115.pdf

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 3. Beyond Nuclear International https://beyondnuclearinternational.org: are launching a new campaign asking for support!  Climate change is finally getting the attention this crisis deserves, spurred on by an energetic youth movement across the world. But the nuclear lobby is pulling out all the PR stops to try to force its way into any climate plan, “Green New Deal” or otherwise.  Propping up old nuclear power plants — and allocating billions of dollars to research and build new ones — squanders precious time and our money when renewable energy and energy efficiency can do the job faster and far more safely. It is now 40 years since the Three Mile Island nuclear disaster. But the truth about its health impacts has never been fully aired. Beyond Nuclear’s Cindy Folkers explains why. To add insult to injury, ratepayers who have already borne the cost of the meltdown, cleanup and ongoing decommissioning, are now being asked to bail out the last TMI unit to keep it running. Eric Epstein advocates for its closure. The Hunterston B reactors in Scotland have at least 370 cracks in their graphite cores. But they could be restarted any day. The FAA finally grounded the US Boeing 737 Max fleet, but the NRC still allows US reactors that are the same design as those that exploded at Fukushima to keep operating. Why do we give a free pass to such an inherently dangerous technology? To truly understand the meaning and consequences of the March 11, 2011 Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear disaster, we need to hear from the people it affected. A letter from a teenage girl, ‘Yumi’, who evacuated Fukushima with her mother and who has emerged as a new young voice in Japan’s anti-nuclear struggle. In London, UK, a group of Japanese residents, Japanese Against Nuclear, will hold their annual protest events, while every Friday they still stand vigil outside the Japanese embassy.

This is not an April Fool’s prank. A proposed new nuclear reactor — Sizewell C — would be built on an English beach, where climate change-caused sea level rise will consume it, if natural, on-going erosion doesn’t first. How crazy can things get? Ecofeminist and author, Heidi Hutner, wondered why women’s voices have been suppressed when speaking out against nuclear energy. She decided to make a film to find the answers.
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4. NFLA media release, for immediate release, 1st April 2019 The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) has submitted its comments of the Radioactive Waste Management’s (RWM) ‘Site Evaluation’ criteria. These criteria are supposed to assist RWM in the process to deliver a suitable site for a deep underground radioactive waste repository should prospective volunteer communities / Councils interested come forward. NFLA Website: http://www.nuclearpolicy.info – includes links to NFLA Facebook and Twitter pages Mayors for Peace Website: http://www.mayorsforpeace.org NFLA Radioactive Waste Briefing 77 will be on the homepage of the NFLA website – http://www.nuclearpolicy.info STOP PRESSES (also on website): (a)NFLA media release, for immediate release, 2nd April 2019NFLA frustrated at delays in dealing with the Ministry of Defence’s radioactive waste legacy in Rosyth, Devonport and Dalgety Bay (b) 5th April NFLA media release commenting on the NAO report on the submarine dismantling programme.

5. Los Alamos http://www.lasg.org/

Press release 20th March updated on the 27th: Trump requests a 12% increase in nuclear warhead spending, with wide variation between sites

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