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Michael Mariotte

Dear Friends of NIRS, we have very sad news to share. Our colleague and friend, and longtime leader, Michael Mariotte died on Monday, May 16th 2016. As you all know, he has waged a brave struggle against pancreatic cancer for three years, but we understand that this could still come as a surprise. It has hit us all very hard. Michael's condition worsened very quickly over the last couple of weeks, and even more so in recent days. He was so committed to our work, that he continued right up until the last week or so, giving many the impression that he was going strong. Read on here.



Tell EPA to reject the proposed Water PAGs

Tell EPA

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing so-called “Protective Action Guides” for Drinking Water (Water PAGs) that will actually increase the danger to the public.

Enormous levels of invisible but deadly radioactive contamination would be permitted in drinking water for weeks, months or even years after a nuclear accident or “incident.”

Tell EPA to reject the proposed Water PAGs and the 2013 PAGs.

July 25th, 2016: 63 organizations commented to EPA against the dangerous proposed radioactive Water Protective Action Guides (PAGs) and submitted all the supporting documentation.

Stop Fukushima Freeways!


A new campaign to expose the perils of the massive and unnecessary radioactive waste transportation that would occur across the U.S. if the moribund and scientifically-indefensible Yucca Mountain, Nevada waste dump were to be revived and/or a centralized "interim" storage site--basically a nuclear waste cask parking lot--were to be licensed.

Organizing and educational resources; expert and technical documents, and much more here.

Women and Radiation

effects of radiation on women

Research by NIRS' Mary Olson demonstrates that women and girls are more susceptible to the effects of radiation than men and boys. On May 5, 2015, Olson gave a presentation about these issues at a United Nations meeting in New York on Gender and Nuclear Weapons.

Text of presentation

Slides from presentation

NIRS/Fairewinds embark on Japan tour February 11-March 15. NIRS' Mary Olson will focus on radiation and health issues while nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen will address Fukushima aftermath and safety issues with Japanese reactors at stops across the country. Media advisory.

Close Indian Point!

Indian Point

A campaign to close the aging, dangerous Indian Point reactors near New York City and build a clean, sustainable and affordable nuclear-free, carbon-free energy system for all New York.



GreenWorld, NIRS' blog, is at

May 2, 2016

Exelon seems to think the rules are for others

It might seem that we’re guilty of dumping on Exelon in these pages, which is possibly true, especially since there is an apparently endless supply of Exelon-initiated issues worthy of bringing to public attention. After all, Exelon is the nation’s largest electric utility, the largest nuclear utility, and while we haven’t developed a test for this yet, quite likely the nation’s greediest electric utility.

Still, consider this one from Crain’s Chicago Business Review,  which has been doing a great job of trying to hold Exelon accountable: it turns out that while Exelon has been pleading poverty in Springfield, Illinois–home of the Illinois legislature–and loudly proclaiming it needs a bailout to keep at least three uneconomic reactors operating; when the company goes to Wall Street, Exelon paints quite a different picture of its current–and apparently lucrative–financial standing.

This is what naked greed looks like, folks. The question is, now that Exelon has been caught on it, will anyone’s cheeks in the executive suite turn even a modest shade of pink? Unlikely, unless this backfires so much that the legislature actually stops a bailout.

Continue reading at

April 25, 2016

How to take on the nuclear shills: here's one approach

Earlier this month, we reported that climate scientist Dr. James Hansen and the pro-nuclear Breakthrough Institute’s Michael Shellenberger had leaped–apparently on their own–into the battle over the future of some of Exelon’s unprofitable nuclear reactors in Illinois.

In a nutshell, Exelon wants a taxpayer and/or ratepayer (it doesn’t really care where the money comes from) bailout to ensure that Exelon will receive a profit, whether the reactors themselves are profitable or not. They aren’t, and a Clinton reactor official (the most endangered of Exelon’s fleet) said this week that even with a bailout Clinton wouldn’t be profitable for “five to seven years.”

Since Clinton’s competition, primarily wind and natural gas at present, already is profitable, the only argument Exelon has been able to make is that closing Clinton (and two units at Quad Cities) would cause carbon emissions in the state to rise. That’s where Hansen and Shellenberger, and Shellenberger’s new group Environmental Progress Illinois (EPI), jumped in. Not that it’s easy to make the case that the fate of the planet depends on whether three aging, uneconomic, and dirty in many other ways reactors operate long enough to keep Exelon’s wallets full for another few years….

Continue reading at

Nuclear Power and Climate: It's No Solution

COP 21 Don't Nuke the Climate! organizing and resources page.

February 2, 2016. Paris and Onward: the Path Forward to a Nuclear-Free, Carbon-Free energy future. NIRS telebriefing with Dr. Mark Jacobson, Stanford University; The Solutions Project ( and Dr. Arjun Makhijani Institute for Energy and Environmental Research ( Moderated By: Tim Judson, Executive Director, Nuclear Information and Resource Service. MP3 recording.

December 11, 2015. Don't Nuke the Climate campaign delivers petition from 524 organizations to COP 21 negotiators, calling for speedy and strong non-nuclear climate change action.

August 4, 2015. Huge Victory! Final EPA Clean Power Plan removes most pro-nuclear provisions, withdraws support for existing reactors, recognizes nuclear power will play little role in addressing climate. Talking points. Letter to NIRS supporters.

Pope Francis' Encyclical on climate includes several passages highly skeptical of nuclear power as a technology, and thus as a climate solution. Excerpts here.

Don't Nuke the Climate telebriefing: lessons from Japan and Germany. Featuring Amory Lovins and Tim Judson with Michael Mariotte moderating. June 30, 2015. mp3 file.

Fact sheet: Nuclear Power and Climate: Why Nukes Can't Save the Planet.

Briefing Paper: Nuclear Energy is Dirty Energy (and does not fit in a clean energy standard). pdf

Briefing Paper: Killing the Competition. How nuclear industry is attempting to block climate action, stop renewable energy and subsidize old reactors. pdf

Report: Power Shift: The Deployment of a 21st Century Electricity Sector and the Nuclear War to Stop It. Describes how the nuclear power industry is seeking consumer bailouts for its uneconomic reactors while working to undermine adoption of clean renewable energy.


Your donations make our work for a nuclear-free, carbon-free future possible. Please donate today. Thank you. Do your holiday shopping through Goodshop and benefit NIRS at the same time!


Hot News and Actions

August 16,2016: 7 Groups File for Injunction to Keep Inherently Dangerous Liquid Radioactive Waste Off our Highways. Press Release. Audio of Press Briefing.

July 13, 2016. TeleBriefing on EPA’s proposed Radioactive Water Protective Action Guides: Diane D’Arrigo and Daniel Hirsch explain EPA’s proposal to dramatically increase allowable radioactivity in our drinking water circumventing and exceeding by thousands of times the Safe Drinking Water Act standards, Superfund Cleanup levels, and EPA’s allowable risk range for cancer.

April 28, 2016. Clean energy groups, including NIRS, urge rejection of WCS' proposed "interim" high-level radwaste dump in Texas.

April 28, 2016. Renewables swamp gas for new generating capacity in 1st quarter of 2016: 1,291 MW to 18 MW. No new capacity for nuclear or coal. Non-hydro renewables (9.53 GW) now exceeds nuclear (9.17 GW) in total generating capacity. From Sun Day Campaign.

April 25, 2016. Goals of U.S. Department of Energy Meeting in Sacramento April 26 would Trigger Largest Nuclear Shipping Campaign in History: California Cities Would be Fukushima Freeways

April 23, 2016. NIRS and AGREE submit extensive comments to New York PSC that show how NY can meet its 2030 carbon emissions goals without nuclear (and thus without nuclear subsidies).

March 9, 2016. Video and statement at march/rally celebrating the shutdown of two Takahama reactors by citizens who took the issue to court.

January 29, 2016. Green Action statement on restart of Takahama Unit 3 reactor: The lessons of Fukushima have not been learned.

July 28, 2015. Floridians: Sign petition to stop the proposed Turkey Point reactors! From our friends at Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. Don't live in Florida? Send it to a friend who does.

June 30, 2015. Don't Nuke the Climate telebriefing: lessons from Japan and Germany. Featuring Amory Lovins and Tim Judson with Michael Mariotte moderating. June 30, 2015. mp3 file.

May 18, 2015. Hour-long interview of NIRS' President Michael Mariotte on 21st Century radio, recorded May 10, 2015.

May 14, 2015. In case brought by NIRS and other groups, NRC Commissioners say agency can license controversial MOX plant without determining whether it can be protected from cyberterrorism.

March 12, 2015. NIRS' President Michael Mariotte on Uprising Radio: Four years later, Fukushima disaster has no end in sight. Video and audio available here.

March 9, 2015. To the Village Square. Remarkable and beautiful new book from photographer Lionel Delevigne. Says Harvey Wasserman: "The No Nukes movement may someday be remembered as history's most essential non-violent uprising. While shutting down and preventing the construction of hundreds of lethal reactors--each with the power to attack our core existence on this planet--it has also given birth to what may soon become the world's largest industry, the Solartopian conversion to renewable green power. Along the way Lionel Delevingne has been the 'family photographer' of an amazing body of people and actions that, against all odds, have created a way for the human race to survive."

TVS cover

Reports, Papers and Info You Can Use

May 2, 2016. Video of today's NIRS webinar, Chernobyl +30: A Look from the Inside, with Lucas Hixson. Mr. Hixson recently traveled to Ukraine and visited the Chernobyl site. He takes us from the moment reactor Unit 4 failed on April 26, the aftermath, and the ongoing mitigation work, up to his own recent experiences living with today’s workers at the site of one of the largest man-made radioactive releases on the planet. Slides only from presentation.

April 28, 2016. NIRS webinar on investigation of reactor pressure vessel bolts at New York's Indian Point reactors, which revealed numerous deficiencies and failures. The webinar examines those failures and explores the implications for reactors across the U.S. and world. Full video/audio of webinar. Slides only from presentation by David Lochbaum of Union of Concerned Scientists.

April 18, 2016. NIRS webinar, part of the #NuclearIsDirty campaign, on the effects of nuclear power on clean water as well as marine life. With presentations from Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Beyond Nuclear, and NIRS. Recording of full webinar (mp4 format). Slides only (no audio) from each presentation (pdf format): SACE, Beyond Nuclear, NIRS

April 6, 2016. Audio file (mp3) of NIRS' telebriefing featuring Fairewind Associates' Arnie Gundersen and NIRS' Mary Olson discussing their recent five-week trip to Japan on the fifth anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

March 25, 2016 NIRS webinar on widespread radioactive contamination around abandoned uranium mines across the U.S. and the campaign to force their clean-up. MP4 video file.

March 18, 2016. Audio file (mp3) of NIRS telebriefing on 1979 uranium mining disaster at Church Rock, New Mexico.

March 9, 2016. New PSR/IPPNW Report: 10,000 cancers expected in Japan as a result of Fukushima meltdowns, ongoing radiation exposure.

March 7, 2016. TORCH 2016. Update of 2006's The Other Report on Chernobyl, detailing the ongoing health effects of that nuclear disaster nearing its 30th anniversary. From Global 2000/Friends of the Earth, Austria.

March 3, 2016. SimplyInfo's five-year report on the Fukushima disaster.

October 5, 2015: Important new report from the UK's highy-respected think tank Chatham House: Cyber Security at Civil Nuclear Facilities: Understanding the Risks. Nuclear reactors are not adequately protected from hackers and cyberwarfare.

September 21, 2015. Updated Energy (R)evolution report from Greenpeace International finds that the world can be powered by 100% renewables by 2050. Greenpeace projections of renewable energy deployment have been consistently more accurate than those associated with government (such as International Energy Agency) and investment analysts.

September 14, 2015. Summing up the health effects of the Fukushima disaster. A brief, but extremely useful summary of the health effects, both physical and mental, from British scientist Dr. Ian Fairlie.

July 27, 2015. New study from Germany's Oko-Institut: "Costs of meeting international climate targets without nuclear power." Concludes a global nuclear phase-out by 2050 is economically feasible. U.S. and Japan would experience highest compliance costs, but these are marginal compared to GDP.

July 22, 2015. The negaWatt scenario: How France can meet the requirements of its new law--reducing nuclear power from 80% to 50% by 2025, and move further to a "climate-friendly, nuclear-free, and sustainable energy future" based on renewable energy/energy efficiency by mid-century. Now available in English.

June 30, 2015. New report from WISE-Paris for Greenpeace: The French nuclear industry in deadlock: The burden of France's nuclear gamble in the era of the energy transition.

June 17, 2015. Important new report from Institute for Energy and the Environment at Vermont Law School's Mark Cooper: Power Shift: The Deployment of a 21st Century Electricity Sector and the Nuclear War to Stop It. Describes how the nuclear power industry is seeking consumer bailouts for its uneconomic reactors while working to undermine adoption of clean renewable energy.

May 14, 2015. Presentation by Yves Marignac to NIRS on May 11, 2015 on French nuclear issues and its current energy transition. Documents the reasons for the stunning decline of the French nuclear industry.

April 29, 2015. Powerpoint presentation by the U.K.'s Dr. Ian Fairlie to U.S. EPA officials, April 27, 2015 on causes and effects of increased childhood leukemia within 5 kilometers (3 miles) of European nuclear reactors. Presentation in pdf.


donateNIRS relies on contributions from people who use and/or appreciate our services. Your support is crucial! You can donate online by clicking the "Donate" button, or you may mail your tax-deductible check to NIRS. We thank you for your support. NIRS is located at 6930 Carroll Avenue, Suite 340, Takoma Park, MD 20912; 301-270-NIRS (301-270-6477); fax: 301-270-4291; E-mail NIRS. WISE-Amsterdam is at P.O. Box 59636, 1040 LC Amsterdam, The Netherlands; 31-20-6126368; fax: 31-20-6892179; E-mail WISE. Web: Our NIRS Southeast U.S. office is at P.O. Box 7586, Asheville, NC 28802; 828-252-8409, E-mail NIRS Southeast office. Worldwide NIRS/WISE relay offices. Photo captions on the page header.