Saturday, December 24, 2005  
Contractor faulted for accidents at lab

By: Keay Davidson, Science Writer
Published In: San Francisco Chronicle
URL: http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2005/12/24/BAG8TGCQ7A1.DTL

LIVERMORE
U.S. blames workers' contamination on sloppy procedures


Sloppy work practices involving deadly radioactive plutonium stored at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory compounded a series of accidents last year that contaminated employees, U.S. Department of Energy investigators say in a report.
As a result, the three contract employees who were contaminated might face a lifetime of special medical scrutiny, acknowledged a spokesman for the contractor, which the Energy Department has fined for the contamination incidents.
Among multiple violations cited by the ...

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Thursday, December 08, 2005  
Nuclear Expansion Okayed

By: Editorial Board
Published In: The Independent, Livermore, CA
URL:

The National Nuclear Security Administration has approved increased plutonium and tritium limits at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Experiments at the National Ignition Facility using materials such as uranium and thorium have also been approved. All in all, the decision provides for a major expansion of nuclear activity at the Lab. Opposition groups are undertaking a detailed legal analysis of the decision, focusing on whether the impacts on nuclear proliferation and the environment were adequately addressed. They believe there is grounds for a lawsuit. "Today's decision puts the...

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Thursday, December 08, 2005  
No EIS for Biolab in Livermore

By: Editorial Board
Published In: The Independent, Vol XLII, No. 49
URL:

The Department of Energy has just announced that it will be preparing a full environmental impact statement for an already constructed advanced bioresearch facility at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). There will not be a similar study of a biolab at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
Loulena Miles, Tri-Valley CAREs Staff Attorney, observed, "We're happy that the Department of Energy has decided to thoroughly study the risks and impacts from the Los Alamos biolabs. However, we're appauled and mystified as to why the Department of Energy would choose to only conduct a fau...

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Friday, December 02, 2005  
Lawrence Lab plans to double stored radioactive plutonium

By: Bob Brownne
Published In: The Tracy Press, San Joaquin News Service
URL:

A plan to step up Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's role in research
for nuclear weapons is now official.

The National Nuclear Safety Administration's "record of decision" on the
lab's latest environmental review clears the way for the next 10 years of
research at the lab. The environmental impact report, released in April,
envisions storage of twice as much radioactive plutonium at the lab as was
previously allowed.

Plutonium at the Livermore lab's "Superblock" storage vault will increase
from 700 kilograms to 1,400 kilograms, and the "material-at-risk" ...

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Thursday, December 01, 2005  
Enough Already

By: Nature Publishing Group
Published In: EDITORIALS NATURE|Vol 438|8
URL:

No convincing case has been made for increasing
the amount of plutonium held at a Californian lab.

The US Department of Energy is planning to double the
amount of plutonium that can be stored at the Lawrence
Livermore National Laboratory in California. Under new
rules announced last week, the nuclear-weapons lab can keep up to
1,400 kilograms, or enough for around 300 bombs.

Not surprisingly, antinuclear activists are up in arms about having
so much bomb-grade metal in such a heavily populated area. But
researchers who want the US nuclear-weapons lab...

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Thursday, December 01, 2005  
Plutonium, Tritium Levels to Increase, NNSA Decision Faces Lawsuit

By: The Independent
Published In: The Independent, DECEMBER 1, 2005
URL:

The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has decided to implement the Proposed
Action Alternative in operating the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. The decision may face a lawsuit. According to a press release, NNSA decided to implement the Proposed Action Alternative, because it best supports NNSA’s missions vital to national security. This includes the continued operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, an increase in administrative and
material-at-risk limits for plutonium and tritium, and experiments conducted at the National Ignition Facility using fiss...

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Thursday, December 01, 2005  
Nuclear lab gets OK to double plutonium

By: Keay Davidson
Published In: San Francisco Chronicle
URL:


U.S. Energy Dept. approves storage of 300 bombs' worth




The U.S. Department of Energy has decided to double the amount of radioactive plutonium that can be stored at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, enough for as many as 300 nuclear bombs, agency representatives said Wednesday.
Energy Department officials approved the increase less than five months after a scientific panel for the agency urged that virtually all the plutonium now stored at Livermore be removed from the growing city to a safer, more remote site, probably in a desert in a different state.
The...

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Wednesday, November 30, 2005  
Lab to double plutonium storage

By: Ian Hoffman, Staff Writer
Published In: Oakland Tribune
URL:

As expected, the nation's nuclear weapons chief has chosen to double storage and daily work limits for plutonium at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and begin firing the world's largest laser at targets closely mimicking H-bombs.
National Nuclear Security Administration chief Linton Brooks, in a Nov. 22 letter released Tuesday, approved an environmental study that amounts to a 10-year blueprint for the nuclear weapons lab, with plans to boost its weapons research and add 500 employees to its work force.
Aspects of the plans are controversial and clash with broader, if slower move...

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005  
Plan would allow Lawrence Livermore to double plutonium

By: Chris Metinko
Published In: Contra Costa Times

The branch of the Energy Department that oversees the nuclear weapons complex has signed off on a 10-year environmental plan that will allow Lawrence Livermore Laboratory to house twice the plutonium it now handles.Linton Brooks, head of the National Nuclear Security Administration, signed off Tuesday on a plan issued in April by his agency that concluded the lab should be allowed to increase its plutonium storage from the 1,540-pound standard that has been in place for years to more than 3,080 pounds -- doubling the allowable plutonium storage at the lab.The plan also allows an increase in th...

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005  
DOE to Allow More Plutonium at Calif. Lab

By: H. Josef Hebert
Published In: Associated Press (AP)
URL:

DOE to allow more plutonium at Calif. lab
By H. JOSEF HEBERT
ASSOCIATED PRESS WRITER
WASHINGTON -- The Energy Department gave clearance Tuesday to doubling the amount of plutonium that can be kept at the Livermore National Laboratory in California despite protests by some local activists that the weapons material poses a threat to adjacent residential communities.
The department issued the new plutonium levels as part of an environmental review for operating the laboratory, including its defense nuclear programs, for the next decade. It said the review showed no adverse environment...

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Tuesday, September 13, 2005  
Congress members make appeal for superlaser project

By: Betsy Mason
Published In: Contra Costa Times

Congress members make appeal for superlaser project

A bipartisan herd of California congressional delegates is appealing to the Senate to restore funding for construction of Lawrence Livermore Laboratory's superlaser project.

In July, the Senate voted to cut the entire $142 million requested this year for the $3.5-billion National Ignition Facility which is approximately 80 percent complete. The House approved the full amount, and the two are expected to hash out their budget differences in conference later this fall.

Led by Reps. Ellen Tauscher, D-Alamo, and Richard Pombo...

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Tuesday, August 30, 2005  
"After 5 years, justice in worker's death"

By: Betsy Mason
Published In: San Jose Mercury News, Knight Ridder

More than five years after her husband Carl died and four years after her first attempt to file for compensation for his death, Joyce Brooks has finally gotten justice from the Department of Labor in the form of a $275,000 check.

Before he died, Carl asked Joyce to pursue restitution from the Department of Energy for his illness, which he believed was caused by 32 years at Lawrence Livermore Laboratory, including work as a beryllium machinist.

It has been a long, hard road for Brooks. Her claim was denied three times. But she persisted, and now she has what she was looking for: a...

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Wednesday, August 10, 2005  
"54 Arrested in Rally Marking Bombing"

By: Chris Metinko
Published In: Contra Costa Times

LIVERMORE - A peaceful protest recalling the 60th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki ended with 54 arrests outside Lawrence Livermore Laboratory on Tuesday morning.
The march and rally drew nearly 100 protesters -- about half the number of those who attended a similar rally Saturday evening at the lab. That protest featured no arrests and was one of four nationally coordinated rallies held at major weapons labs or test sites and marked the 60th anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing.
Although Tuesday's marchers were peaceful, many of those arrested had failed to disperse when as...

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Wednesday, August 10, 2005  
"Recall Hiroshima, seek nuclear disarmament"

By: Marylia Kelley, Executive Director, Tri-Valley CAREs, Livermore
Published In: USA Today

Nuclear weapons are the ultimate weapons of terror and mass destruction. Their use by anyone, including the United States, would be unconscionable.

Contrary to what Al Neuharth may think, U.S. atomic bombs did not kill just a few hundred thousand Japanese men, women and children in 1945. More died and are still dying each year of the lingering effects of radiation (“Was Hiroshima hell or high-water mark?” Plain talk, The Forum, Friday).

Moreover, the atom bomb has become the mere trigger or first stage of modern U.S. nuclear weapons. All life on Earth as we know it hangs in the...

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Saturday, August 06, 2005  
"Anti-nuclear Activists Rally on Anniversary of Atomic Blast"

By: Barry Massey
Published In: San Jose Mercury News--from AP

LOS ALAMOS, N.M. - At the birthplace of the atomic bombs that devastated Hiroshima and Nagasaki 60 years ago, survivors of those deadly blasts joined with hundreds of people Saturday in support of a global ban on nuclear weapons.

"No more Hiroshimas. No more Nagasakis," bombing survivor Koji Ueda of Tokyo said in a written statement translated into English and distributed at the rally. "We send this message to our friends all over the world, along with a fresh determination of the 'hibakusha' (atomic bomb survivors) to continue to tell about Hiroshima and Nagasaki, aiming at a planet se...

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Thursday, August 04, 2005  
"Secretary skeptical of laser"

By: Ian Hoffman, STAFF WRITER
Published In: Tri-Valley Herald

Bodman is first U.S. secretary to doubt the project will help nuclear deterrence

LIVERMORE — For the first time, a U.S. energy secretary publicly has admitted uncertainty over whether a giant laser at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory — now the nations largest scientific construction project — is needed for maintaining the U.S. nuclear arsenal.
I dont know, Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said Wednesday at the lab. Certainly there are strong beliefs among the leadership of this laboratory that it is.
Bodman, an MIT-trained chemical engineer and former professor, said he te...

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Tuesday, August 02, 2005  
"Nuclear Workers' Heartbreak"

By: C.W. Nevius
Published In: San Francisco Chronicle, copyright 2005

A group of sick workers from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory gathered last week at the Livermore Public Library to tell their stories. They are members of an exclusive club that no one wants to join. It's the dues that are the killer.
Each of them either worked at the lab or was married to someone who was employed at the facility. There was talk of nuclear weapons experimentation, laser beams and top secret projects. That's what made the lab such an exciting place to work.
And then there was talk of cancer, surgery and death. Those are the stories that matter now.
Although t...

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Friday, July 22, 2005  
FLASHPOINTS RADIO: Live from New College

By: KPFA Radio
Published In: Flashpoints
http://www.kpfa.org/archives/archives.php?id=9

The July 22 edition of Flashpoints is a live broadcast from the New College, Tri-Valley CAREs outreach director, Tara Dorabji joins flashpoints to commemorate the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and preventing another nuclear holocaust.
...

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Thursday, July 21, 2005  
Lab officials say fire posed no toxic threat

By: Keay Davidson at kdavidson@sfchronicle.com
Published In: San Francisco Chronicle, page B-5, copyright 2005

A large grass fire penetrated into and burned about 200 acres of an outdoor explosives test site at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory late Tuesday and Wednesday morning, raising concerns that contaminants at the Superfund site may have been released into the atmosphere.

But lab officials denied there's any danger that the fire might have vaporized toxic contaminants and expelled them into the atmosphere. The 200 acres that burned -- a small part of the 7,000-acre explosives facility known as Site 300 -- have suffered "little ground contamination" from years of explosives tests, l...

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Friday, July 15, 2005  
Remove Plutonium From Lab, Task Force says

By: Keay Davidson
Published In: San Francisco Chronicle, page B-1, copyright 2005

"Draft paper by federal advisory panel urges nuclear materials be centralized elsewhere"

Keay Davidson, San Francisco Chronicle Science Writer

LIVERMORE, CA

Livermore residents who fear nuclear accidents or terrorist attacks at the weapons lab down the street will be able to breathe a sigh of relief if the recommendations of a federal task force are carried out.


The report, still in draft form and dated July 13, advises protecting civilian populations by moving plutonium out of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory -- where 1,500 pounds of the fissionable ma...

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Saturday, April 23, 2005  
Plutonium may have big future at Livermore lab

By: Ian Hoffman
Published In: Oakland Tribune

Feds' plans to increase nuclear weapons work could double inventory

While eliminating a controversial plutonium separation project, federal officials are proposing an expansion of nuclear weapons work at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, including experiments on casting the cores of H-bombs.
If approved by the nation's chief weapons executive, over the next decade the lab could as much as double its plutonium inventory to 1.5 tons, enough in theory to make hundreds of nuclear weapons.

The lab also plans to double the plutonium that workers in a single room may h...

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Tuesday, February 01, 2005  
Safety concerns halt plutonium work

By: Betsy Mason
Published In: CONTRA COSTA TIMES
http://www.contracostatimes.com/mld/cctimes/living/science/10785839.htm?1c

Potential safety problems prompted a stop of work with plutonium at Lawrence Livermore Laboratory after a federal nuclear agency found taped-up cracks in the ventilation system and "hot boxes" without adequate seismic restraints.

Bruce Goodwin, the lab's head of defense and nuclear technology, said the stoppage is not due to existing or imminent safety breaches but to give lab experts a chance to develop a plan to update the plutonium facility's physical management plan.

All employees at the lab's plutonium facility are still reporting for work, but the stop of hands-on work with...

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