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Rio+20 - WECF sponsors June 15th Forum on Phase-Out of Nuclear Energy by 2020

On the Opening Day of the Rio+20 Peoples’ Summit Women in Europe for a Common Future Presents Forum Calling for Global Phase Out of Nuclear Energy by 2020

15.06.2012 | WECF Press Release

Rio de Janeiro (June 15) - On the opening day of the Rio+20 Peoples’ Summit, speakers representing 4 continents will outline the ongoing problems inherent with nuclear energy production — from the community health devastation of uranium mining to the unsolved problem of radioactive waste storage, from horrific nuclear accidents around the world to the continuing danger of diversion of radioactive materials for military use. 

The panel, organized by Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF),  will take place from 11:30 – 13:30 in Tenda 24  “Mercedes Sosa” in Flamengo Park, Rio de Janeiro.


Women at both the grassroots and global level have long been leading the call for a phase out of nuclear power and promotion of safe energy alternatives to nuclear energy – wind, wave and solar power; energy efficiency and conservation.

Moderated by Sabine Bock, Director of WECF’s Climate and Energy campaign, the panel includes a presentation by Dawid Bartelt, Director of Heinrich Boll Foundation Brazil on the story behind Angra – Brazil’s only nuclear power plant and Dr. Bremley Lyngdoh, who will talk about the ongoing devastation from new uranium mining in his indigenous community in India; a representative of the Indigenous Environmental Network has also been invited.

In addition, Goldman Environmental Prize Winner Kaisha Atakhanova will discuss the nuclear situation in her home country of Kazakhstan, former site of the Soviet-era nuclear weapons testing grounds; Svetlana Slesarenok of the Black Sea Women’s Club, will also talk about uranium mining in the Ukraine; and Claire Greensfelder of INOCHI/Plutonium Free Future of California, USA, will present an update on the Fukushima disaster and the current challenges to nuclear power generation in Japan and the US.

Sabine Bock, WECF’s Climate and Energy Campaign Director, will present the WECF policy position for Rio+20 where WECF makes a forceful call for a worldwide phase out of Nuclear Energy by 2020. 

According to Sascha Gabizon, Executive Director of WECF: “Japan has already shown that this [global phase-out] is possible, they shut down their last nuclear power plant in May 2012 – and unlike the doom predictions of the nuclear industry, – the country has continued along and there have been no blackouts. Independent scientists in Germany have re-done the risk calculations, and have projected a potential melt-down every 10 to 20 years.”

“WECF says no to the continued risks of the nuclear industry. Nuclear energy can be replaced tomorrow. Worldwide, nuclear energy provides only 2% - 3% of total energy.  These small percentages can be easily replaced through energy saving measures.”

WECF’s agenda for governments to phase out nuclear power call for a first step of making the nuclear industry play fair: WECF’s agenda for governments to phase out nuclear power call for a first step of making the nuclear industry play fair:
  • Nuclear industry insurance costs should not have artificially low ceilings
  • Nuclear industry energy prices should include the cost of full, safe, radioactive waste management, and the cost for clean up of uranium mining sites
  • The nuclear industry should pay sufficient money into a fund to pay for the safe dismantling of old nuclear plants.
  • The nuclear industry should be excluded from subsidies via climate finance mechanisms
Gabizon says: “Governments at Rio+20 should agree on a fast-track phase out of nuclear energy by 2020.