Successful blockade at nuclear weapon base Buchel. On August 11 a group from IKV Pax Christi joined the blockade of the German military base Büchel that hosts US nuclear weapons. Every gate was blocked by non-violent activists from all over the world. Every gate supported the 'Rhythm Beats Bombs' message with musical performances. Krista van Velzen, nuclear disarmament campaigner at IKV Pax Christi, said: 'We join this 24 hour long blockade to show solidarity with the German peace movement. Just as in the Netherlands, Germany hosts 20 American B61 nuclear weapons at the air base. Although the German government said they wanted to send them back, there are still at Büchel, this is the reason why it is necessary to protest.
Hiroshima's Mayor lashes Japan-India atomic courtship. The mayor of Hiroshima, speaking on the 68th anniversary of the nuclear attack on his city, said Japan is wrong to be entertaining prospects of atomic trade with nuclear-armed India. Tokyo and New Delhi agreed in May to pursue arrangements for peaceful nuclear trade. "Even if the nuclear power agreement the Japanese government is negotiating with India promotes their economic relationship, it is likely to hinder nuclear weapons abolition," Mayor Kazumi Matsui said. He pressed his country to strengthen ties with the governments pursuing nuclear weapons abolition. Matsui spoke to a crowd of about 50,000 near the location of the 1945 blast, which killed around 140,000 people.
Tokyo exhibition shows harassment against anti-nuclear movement. Anti-nuclear activists held an exhibition in Tokyo on August 10−11 to highlight the harassment and threats they faced during a period long before the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Letters and postcards sent to the activists in the 1990s and early 2000s were displayed. One postcard simply says, "You are a tick." Some envelopes contained hair, cigarette butts and dead cockroaches. Other letters were filled with obscenities. In 1995, five organisations and 66 individuals asked the Human Rights Protection Committee of the Japan Federation of Bar Associations to take measures against the harassment. By that time, 4,000 of the letters and postcards had been confirmed around the country. Lawyer Yuichi Kaido, one of the organisers of the exhibition, said: "The battle between those supporting the restart of idled nuclear reactors and those against it will be heating up from now on. The obstruction tactics against the anti-nuclear movement that were seen in the past could occur again."
Japanese Peace Boat. The Japanese Peace Boat is travelling around the world with a global call for nuclear weapons abolition through its 6th Global Voyage for a Nuclear-Free World. Eight Hibakusha (atomic bomb survivors) from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, accompanied by a Youth Special Communicator for a Nuclear-Free World, are giving testimonies in more than a dozen ports on their way to arrive back in Japan in October. The Peace Boat will be in Mexico on September 21 for the International Day of Peace (Mexico will host the next humanitarian conference on nuclear weapons in February 2014). Updates are posted at www.breakingthenuclearchain.org and www.peaceboat.org
World Conference against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs. The 2013 World Conference against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs ended successfully on August 9 in Nagasaki with the participation of about 7,000 people including 89 overseas representatives from 20 countries. Conference organisers have historically shied away from debates over nuclear power but that has changed since the 2011 Fukushima disaster. The Declaration of the International Meeting adopted on August 5 in Hiroshima includes the following statement: "The accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant is still in the midst of the crisis. Bringing the situation under control, decommissioning of all nuclear reactors and a fundamental shift to renewable energy resources are keenly called for. Having noted the dangerous relations between nuclear weapons and nuclear power generation, we call for ending all kind of nuclear damage caused by nuclear fuel cycles, and oppose reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel and accumulation of plutonium, as well as military use of nuclear energy. United in one wish for 'no more nuclear victims,' we will develop our campaign together with the movement to break free of nuclear power." www.antiatom.org
Offshore wind could meet EU electricity needs. The EU's total electricity usage could be met more than four times over by floating offshore wind farms in the deep waters of the North Sea, according to a new report from the European Wind Energy Association. The report claims that if the right policies are put into place now to spur the development and implementation of next-generation floating turbines, total EU offshore wind capacity could reach 150 gigawatts by the year 2030. www.ewea.org/report/deep-water