Reading Room


Tri-Valley CAREs Sues to Compel Open Government

Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

This morning, Tri-Valley CAREs filed a lawsuit against the Department of Energy and the National Nuclear Security Administration for their repeated failure to respond to information requests made by the group pursuant to its rights under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

FOIA requires federal agencies like the DOE and the NNSA to respond to requests for information made by the public, news, or public interests groups within 20 days. Tri-Valley CAREs brought suit because the DOE and NNSA have failed to provide any responsive information to seven requests made by the group, some of which have been pending for over three years.

Tri-Valley CAREs requests information about the dangers faced by our community from spills, accidents, releases and potential acts of terrorism at Livermore Lab. Keeping this information hidden does nothing to protect the public.

Click here to read our press release that contains more information about our lawsuit

Click here for a copy of Tri-Valley CAREs' Complaint filed against the DOE and NNSA.


Federal Superfund Program Turns 30 this Month: Communities Request "Birthday Gift" of Adequate Funding to Clean Up Contaminated Sites

Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

Thirty years ago this December, President Jimmy Carter signed the Superfund law. The basic idea then, as now, was to protect community health, the nation's drinking water supplies and the environment by cleaning up the most dangerous toxic sites around the country.

As the Superfund program got underway, it expanded to include contaminated government sites, such as Livermore Lab and other locations in the Dept. of Energy (DOE) nuclear weapons complex. Livermore Lab was scored by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), received a high "hazard ranking" and was placed on the Superfund list of most contaminated sites in the nation in 1987. The Livermore Lab's high explosives testing range, called Site 300 and located near Tracy, CA, was subsequently scored by EPA and became a Superfund site in 1990.

One of the philosophical and practical premises of Superfund is the idea that the "polluter pays." At federal government sites, like Livermore Lab, the money to complete cleanup is requested as part of the annual appropriations process. The problems occur when DOE fails to request enough funds to do the job and/or when Congress fails to appropriate enough. At privately-owned, for-profit Superfund cleanup sites, the funding works differently; in essence corporations must ante up out of their profits. Hence the term "Superfund."

Yet, key provisions have been allowed to sunset, and the Superfund Program faces bankruptcy. The crisis is both moral and fiscal. On this 30th anniversary of the Superfund law, community groups in 25 states (including CA's Tri-Valley CAREs) have banded together to call on Congress to save Superfund, in part by reinstating the "polluter pays" fees. The groups are requesting reinstatement of one of the fees in particular, the Corporate Environmental Income Tax. This was paid by companies with $2 million or more in profits and it totaled $12 on every $10,000. This is not too much to ask for our families' health and our environment.

Click here to read more

Click here for a copy of Tri-Valley CAREs' Superfund petition to ensure adequate funds for cleanup at Livermore Lab.

Click here for a copy of the letters Tri-Valley CAREs is sending the first week of December to Senator Boxer.

Click here for a copy of the letters Tri-Valley CAREs is sending the first week of December to Senator Feinstein.


Citizen's Watch Newsletter November- December 2010

Monday, November 29, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Read Online

PDF Download

  • A Letter of Thanks To All Who Have Supported Our Work in 2010

  • Bio-Suit Appeal to the 9th Circuit

  • Our Petition To Clean Up Contamination in Livermore

  • Nuclear Extortion For New START Ratification

  • Lab Management Fined For Exposing More Workers to Beryllium

  • Alerts 4 U Upcoming Events with Tri-Valley CAREs


Tri-Valley CAREs Settles Freedom of Information Act Litigation with the Department of Energy

Friday, November 19, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

At Tri-Valley CAREs, we rely on many tools to monitor activities at Livermore Lab and across the US nuclear weapons complex. Chief among them is the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), a statute that provides that any member of the public or organization can request documents from the federal government, including federal agencies, and requires production of the documents within 20 days of the request (unless the documents are exempt from release pursuant to narrow exemptions set out in the statute).

After two years of litigation in Federal Court against the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for violation of their responsibilities under FOIA, Tri-Valley CAREs has finally reached a settlement with the agency. The Complaint alleged that the DOE had failed to respond to six of Tri-Valley CAREs' request with any responsive documents and had displayed a pattern of violating FOIA. (Some of the requests had languished for over a year without any responsive documents). Because of our litigation, documents were finally produced in response to all of our requests.

Click here to read more


Tri-Valley CAREs Asks for a Broader Environmental Review For New Plutonium Plant at Los Alamos National Lab

Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

Click here to read our Scoping Comments on the the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statment on the Chemestry and Metallurgy Research Replacement- Nuclear Facility (CMRR) at Los Alamos National Laboratory.


NNSA Announces Milestone in Removal of Special Nuclear Material from Livermore Lab

Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Today, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) announced that it has removed 80% of the Special Nuclear Material from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and is on target to meet the 2012 target date for removal of the remaining material. While not stated in its press release, the removal of this material is largely due to Tri-Valley CAREs advocacy and NNSA's finding that LLNL can not keep the material safe and secure in a faciltiy with such dense population up to its gate. Unfortunately, most of this material is being shipped to other sites in the nuclear weapons complex contrary to Tri-Valley CAREs hopes.

We will keep you updated on how the deinventory process proceeds.

Click here to read NNSA's Press Release


Livermore Lab Management Fined for Violating Worker Protection Laws and Exposing Workers to Toxic Beryllium Metal on Multiple Occasions

Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Today, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Health, Safety and Security (HSS) announced a $200,000 penalty issued to the managers of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). This unprecedented action stems from the agency's finding that the Livermore Lab National Security, LLC's (LLNS) legally-required program to minimize worker exposure to beryllium was rife with "deficiencies" that led to multiple, uncontrolled worker exposures between 2007 and 2010, subsequent to the LLNS contract to manage the nuclear weapons laboratory.

Tri-Valley CAREs has obtained a copy of the Order mandating payment of the fine, which is signed by DOE HSS Director, John Boulden, DOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) head, Tom D'Agostino, and LLNL Director George Miller.

Click here to read more

Click here to read a Los Angeles Times article about the fine

Click here read the Consent Order


Tri-Valley CAREs Presents...

Monday, November 1, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

Tri-Valley CAREs' Marylia Kelley and Jay Coghlan of Nuclear Watch New Mexico co-presented at a 2-day workshop October 28-29 in Washington, DC. The workshop focused on the elimination of nuclear weapons in the U.S. It was hosted by Robert Alvarez, a former Senate and DOE staffer and a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies. Kelley and Coghlan' presentation addressed the proposed "modernization" of the U.S. nuclear weapons complex and arsenal as well as possible strategic paths forward toward disarmament amidst the complexities of the Obama Administration and current Congress.

Click here to view the slides of the presentation


Tri-Valley CAREs Participates in National Dialogue to Improve Environmental Cleanup at Federal Facilities

Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

Tri-Valley CAREs' Executive Director, Marylia Kelley, was invited by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to participate in a national "Federal Facilities Cleanup Dialogue" aimed at improving the openness and quality of cleanup programs at contaminated facilities owned by the Departments of Energy and Defense. The meeting was held in Washington, DC on October 19 and 20.

Click here to read more...

Click here to read more about it in Defense Environment Alert

Congress Unanimously Passes Second Annual Day of Remembrance for Nuclear Program Workers

Monday, October 25, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Congress has again designated October 30th as the National Day of Remembrance for Nuclear Weapons Program Workers. It is estimated that over 600,000 people worked in the nuclear weapons industry; from the mining, milling and hauling of uranium, to the development, production and testing of nuclear weapons. 80,000 seriously ill former Department of Energy workers have applied for compensation and health care benefits from the Energy Employee Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA), (a federal program) because their illnesses are due to on the job exposures to radiation and toxins.

We urge you to take pause on Saturday, October 30th and reflect on the human cost of this very dirty business. Locally, there are nearly 1500 former Livermore Lab employees, and 160 Sandia employees who have applied for EEOICPA benefits (or their survivors applied). With the ongoing worker exposures to beryllium and other dangerous substances at Livermore Lab, this number is sure to continue to grow.

Tri-Valley CAREs' Staff Attorney Scott Yundt continues to facilitate the LLNL, SNL, LBNL Sick Worker Support Group which meets at least twice a year at the Livermore Library. He also assists individual workers in their claims for benefits under the EEOICPA. He can be contacted at the Tri-Valley CAREs office by calling (925) 443-7148 or by email at scott@trivalleycares.org

Click here to read about ceremonies and gatherings to recognize nuclear weapons workers around the country.

Click here to add your name to the electronic petition to reform the EEOICPA.


The Government's Public Meeting: A Portrait in Pen and Ink

Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

On October 7, 2010, the Dept. of Energy and Livermore Lab held a long-overdue public meeting on their plan to clean up the "leading edge" of the toxic groundwater plume that has migrated westward from Livermore Lab and is now under suburban homes, apartments, streets, a city park and a community swimming pool.

We have written elsewhere about the details of the contamination (see, for example, the special section in our September/October 2010 newsletter, Citizen's Watch, our Superfund petition to improve the cleanup and its funding, and our earlier blog of September 22, 2010).

Here, we offer a small portrait of the meeting itself, including the Lab's presentation and the community's response.

Click here to read more...


The National Ignition Facility's Missed Milestone; or, What Do You Call a "Credible Ignition" Experiment That is Neither Credible Nor Ignition?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

For starters, the NIF has already cost taxpayers around $7 billion (instead of the $1 billion estimate originally given to Congress). And, the Dept. of Energy (DOE) and Livermore Lab management promised NIF would achieve nuclear ignition (a self sustaining fusion reaction) and gain (more energy out than was put in) by 2003.

That milestone was then stretched to fiscal year 2010, which ended on Sept. 30th. As the deadline approached, DOE and the Lab began walking that commitment back to what it began calling a "credible ignition experiment." The DOE National Nuclear Security Administration head Tom D'Agostino defined it as such in a 2010 congressional hearing: "And, credible means we have no reason to believe it is not going to work."

Baloney. The Lab knew. And, Tom knew (or did not want to know). So, what did we actually get for our money?

Click here to read more...

Click here for the NNSA October 6th press release

Click here for Tri-Valley CAREs' analysis of the NNSA FY 2011 Stockpile Stewardship and Management Plan, including NIF


Tri-Valley CAREs Plans Community Meeting on, "Toxics, Radiation, Superfund & the Livermore Lab"

Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

On Thursday, September 30th from 7pm-8pm, Tri-Valley CAREs will facilitate a community meeting at Janis Kate's home at 749 Hazel St. in Livermore. Her home is located near the off-site toxic waste plume emanating from Livermore Lab.

The keynote speaker will be environmental scientist Peter Strauss, who serves as Tri-Valley CAREs' advisor on the Superfund cleanup. Come and learn about the contaminants, the off-site plume, the proposed cleanup options, the Superfund law, and what you can do to help win justice for the people of Livermore and our local environment.

At the end of the meeting, we will offer a short "field trip" to the nearby Big trees Park. There, you can see one of Livermore Lab's contaminant pumping wells, several of the Lab's monitoring wells and two proposed pipeline routes for contaminated groundwater.

Click here to see our event flier

Click here to see our Comment on Livermore Lab's plan to deal with the leading edge of the contaminated groundwater plume.


Citizen's Watch Newsletter September- October 2010

Friday, September 17, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Read Online

PDF Download

  • Remembering Hiroshima Day in Livermore

  • Planning Together Tri-Valley CAREs Strategic Planning Retreat 2010

  • NNSA's Fiscal Year 2011 PlanNukes, NIF and Your Money

  • Print BitesAll the News that Fits to Print

  • Alerts 4 U Upcoming Events with Tri-Valley CAREs


Tri-Valley CAREs' Staff Attorney Goes to DC to Advocate for Sick Workers

Thursday, September 16, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Tri-Valley CAREs' Staff Attorney, Scott Yundt, spent three days in in our nation's capital last week with two objectives: 1) to participate in the Alliance of Nuclear Worker Advocacy Groups (ANWAG)/Cold War Patriots' leadership conference on behalf of the Lawrence Livermore National Lab (LLNL) and Sandia Livermore National Lab (SNL) Sick Worker Support Group for workers made ill by on-the-job exposures, and, 2)to meet with members of Congress to advocate major changes to the Federal law intended to compensate sick and dying nuclear weapons complex workers and their families.

Click here to read more

Click here to read the Press Release


The New Nevada Test Site Name in Context

Monday, August 23, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

On August 23, 2010, United Press International ran a short article describing a ceremony at the Nevada Test Site (NTS). The ceremony was held by the NTS owner, which is the U.S. Dept. of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration.

The occasion? Not its closing as an active part of the nuclear weapons complex, although that would have been appropriate.

Click here to read more


August 6th Action at Livermore Lab- 65 years since the bombings of Hiroshima

Friday, August 6, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

August 6th, 2010 marked the 65th anniversary of the U.S. atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan. Three days later, a second bomb was dropped on the city of Nagasaki.

Around 250 people joined Tri-Valley CAREs and other colleague groups in a commemoration and rally at the gates of the Livermore nuclear weapons laboratory. We were joined by Takashi Tanemori, a survivor of the Hiroshima bombing, who shared with us his story of the how the bomb affected his life and lead him to develop a personal philosophy of forgiveness.

We were also inspired by the poetry of Kayla Marin, driven to action by the information of Tri-Valley CAREs Staff Attorney Scott Yundt, and made to think with the commentary of Norman Soloman.

Our sincere thanks to all who participated in making this years event so successful.

Click here to read Scott Yundt's words from the rally

Click here to read more about the pre-event information

Click here to see the event flier.

Click here to see photos of the event


"Countdown to Zero" Continues to Show in the Bay Area Theaters

Thursday, August 5, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

COUNTDOWN TO ZERO is a 90-minute film that traces the history of the atomic bomb from its origins to the present state of global affairs: nine nations possess nuclear weapons capabilities with others racing to join them, with the world held in a delicate balance that could be shattered by an act of failed diplomacy, terrorism, or a simple accident. Countdown to Zero makes a compelling case for worldwide nuclear disarmament and creates an opportunity to bring this issue to kitchen tables in households around the country. Tri-Valley CAREs no longer has free tickets available. But tickets can be purchased at the theaters showing the film in Berkeley and San Francisco. Don't miss it, and bring your friends!

Click here to get some additional context before you see the film.

Click here for more information about where to see the film.


GAO Investigates (and criticizes) the DOE's Cost Estimates For Future Budget Increases

Monday, July 26, 2010
Posted by Iti Talwar

A recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report titled, Actions Needed to Identify Total Costs of Weapons Complex Infrastructure and Research and Production Capabilities found that The Department of Energy's (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) lacks the information that would help justify its planned FY 2011 (and beyond) budget increase. The GAO further found that the NNSA itself does not know the actual total costs to maintain the facilities and can't provide accurate budget information to Congress.

Click here to read more

Click here to read the GAO Report.


Citizen's Watch Newsletter Summer 2010

Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Read Online

PDF Download

  • Report Out Non-Proliferation Treaty Conference

  • August 6 Action at LLNL The Power of Your Presence

  • Print BitesAll the News that Fits to Print

  • Alerts 4 U Upcoming Events with Tri-Valley CAREs


Internal DOE Document Reveals Different Nuclear Weapons Plans than the Agency's Public Pronouncements

Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

The Fiscal Year 2011 Stockpile Stewardship and Management Plan obtained recently by Tri-Valley CAREs, reveals the U.S. Dept. of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration's (NNSA) internal plans to: 1) abandon promised science and "ignition and gain" at Livermore Lab NIF mega-laser; 2) jack up funding for nuclear weapon "life extensions" beyond what the facts justify, and; 3) escalate bomb budgets through 2030 despite lip service to Obama disarmament goals.

Click here to see our press release and analysis

Click here to read the Fiscal Year 2011 Stockpile Stewardship and Management Plan.

Click here to read Annex A to the Report.

Click here to read Annex D to the Report.


Take Action for the New Start Treaty

Friday, July 9, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

In April, Presidents Obama and Medvedev signed New START (Strategic Arms Reductions Treaty). Both countries are proceeding with ratification processes. In the U.S., the treaty was transmitted to the Senate in mid-May.

Also transmitted to the Senate was a classified report containing the Administration's plan, as required by the defense bill, to "modernize the nuclear weapons complex." The White House released a one-page unclassified summary of the plan, which shows the budget for nuclear weapons activities continuing to escalate (from the present year's $6.4 billion to the 2011 request of $7 billion, and continuing upwards each year to $9 billion in 2018).

The New START is a modest but important treaty, and it should be ratified. On the other hand, increases in the nuclear weapons budget and "modernization" of the arsenal and the complex (i.e., new bomb plants) must be opposed.

We at Tri-Valley CAREs will continue to follow the path of supporting ratification of the New START treaty without attaching "conditions" that would undermine its arms control value, and we invite our readers to sign the petition in the right hand column under "Take Action Now!" to show the US Senate there is public support for New Start.


Report Back from Department of Labor "Town Hall" Meetings for Sick Workers in Livermore

Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

On Tuesday, June 29 the Department of Labor held two "Town Hall" meetings in Livermore to address former workers of Livermore Lab who have been made ill by on the job related exposure to radiation, and/or toxic substances. The DOL wanted to update these workers on recent changes that could affect their eligibility for monetary and health care benefits from the Energy Employee Occupation Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA). On May 10, 2010 a newly expanded Special Exposure Cohort (SEC) for Livermore Lab employees was added to EEOICPA that simplifies the process by which causation is established. Thus, if you worked at LLNL for at least 250 work days between January 1, 1950 through December 31, 1973 and have been diagnosed with one of the 22 cancers on the approved list of cancers, you will be approved for $150,000 and health care coverage (whether you were issued a dosemeter or not).

Click here to read more...

Click here to view the DOL's slides from the presentation.


Tri-Valley CAREs at the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference

Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

Tri-Valley CAREs' Executive Director Marylia Kelley and long-time member Joanne Dean-Freemire spent the early part of May 2010 at the UN in New York City, participating on our members' behalf at the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference (held every 5 years). The NPT remains the "cornerstone" of international disarmament and nonproliferation efforts, and, the 2010 conference was especially important following the widely acknowledged failure to achieve progress towards disarmament goals at the 2005 review.

In the days before the 2010 review conference opened, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from around the world gathered for their own conference to share information, strategize, and come up with NGO goals for the pending review, the larger NPT framework, and the future of citizen action to achieve global nuclear disarmament. Highlights of the NGO conference included amazing plenary sessions and workshops with NGO experts and a keynote address by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Click here to read more and for links to NPT related documents.


Congressionally ordered Sustainable Defense Task Force recommends a $26 billion decrease in US nuclear program over next 10 years

Tuesday, June 11, 2010
Posted by Marylia Kelley

"Debt, Deficits, and Defense: A Way Forward" is a report by the Sustainable Defense Task Force, which was formed in response to a request from Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) and several congressional colleagues.

While the majority of the report deals with U.S. Defense Department spending, it also touches on some of the Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration issues as well. Here, the report wisely recommends reducing spending on nuclear weapons activities by $26 billion over the next ten years.

To accomplish these savings, the report suggests curtailing construction of three costly, proposed nuclear weapons facilities; a new plutonium pit (bomb core) factory at Los Alamos in NM, a new uranium processing facility at Y-12 in TN, and a new Kansas City Plant in MO to manufacture the non-nuclear components found in nuclear weapons. The report further recommends foregoing a planned "upgrade" to the B61 nuclear bombs currently deployed in Europe.

Click here to read more and for the Report.


The Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) and Tri-Valley CAREs: 2010 Update

Monday, June 7, 2010
Posted by Iti Talwar

Tri-Valley CAREs (TVC) uses the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to monitor activities at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and the U.S. nuclear weapons complex more broadly. FOIA requires agencies to produce documents in their possession related to a request to any member of the public or organization unless the information is exempt from disclosure.

This year, TVC's FOIA Officer (and board member), Iti Talwar, has sent numerous FOIA requests to the National Nuclear Security Administration, an agency within the Department of Energy (DOE) in charge of the nuclear weapons complex, requesting documents concerning various ongoing activities at LLNL. We have requested documents concerning: 1) a 2009 audit of the Chronic Beryllium Disease Prevention Program at LLNL; 2) a recent beryllium industrial hygiene exposure at LLNL; 3) an audit of the financial cost transfers at LLNL; and 4) LLNL's Institutional Bio-safety Committee minutes at LLNL.

Click here to read more about our current FOIA litigation and to see these recent requests.


Illustrious and Informative Multi-Country Report On Nuclear Disarmament Relies On 2009 Report Prepared In Part By Tri-Valley CAREs

Monday, May 24, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

    A recent report by the International Panel on Fissile Material (IPFM) entitled, "Country Perspectives on the Challenges to Nuclear Disarmament" gives an excellent overview of the potential paths and road blocks facing the global disarmament effort. The report examines disarmament from the perspective of various countries. It looks at China, France, Germany, India, Iran, Israel, Japan, North Korea, South Korea, Pakistan, Russia, United Kingdom and the United States. For the section on disarmament and the United States, the report relies on the 2009 report about consolidation of the U.S. nuclear-weapon design and production infrastructure as the nuclear weapons arsenal is sharply reduced, prepared by the non-governmental Nuclear Weapons Complex Consolidation Policy Network (which includes Tri-Valley CAREs).

    Overall this report does an excellent job of providing an overview of the global political climate around disarmament. It is worth a read for anyone interested in the issue.

    Click here to read the entire IPFM report.

    Click here to read just the United States section of the report.


Thank You Representatives Garamendi, Lee, McNerney and Miller for Advocating for "Stimulus Funds" for LLNL Cleanup!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

    Our advocacy work in DC bears more fruit! Local Congressional Representatives to the U.S. House of Representatives John Garamendi, Jerry McNerney, Barbara Lee, and George Miller co-authored a letter to Energy Secretary Chu requesting that ARRA funding (aka "stimulus funds") be allocated to jump start some very important stalled clean-up projects at Lawrence Livermore and Lawrence Berkeley Labs. We will be following up these efforts by our Representatives with a community petition drive. Stay tuned...

    Click here to read the letter to Enegy Secretary Chu.


Citizen's Watch Newsletter Spring 2010

Tuesday, May 5, 2010
Posted by Scott Yundt

Read Online

PDF Download

  • New START A Hopeful Sign but will Ratification be Costly?

  • Tri-Valley CARES and the NPT Influencing the Cornerstone of the global nonproliferation regime.

  • Report Back From Your DC Days TeamAdvocating for Our Members.

  • National Week of Action on the Nuclear Weapons Budget! Cut the Nuclear Pork- May 31st to June 5th

  • The Nuclear Posture Review Our New Guiding Nuclear Weapons Policy- Some Cheers and Jeers

  • Alerts 4 U Upcoming Events with Tri-Valley CAREs


US Releases Previously Classified Nuclear Weapons Stockpile Numbers

Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Posted by Iti Talwar

    Today, the United States released a declassified accounting of its nuclear weapons arsenal. They chose to release it today in hopes of making an example of our transparency as countries from around the world gather in New York for the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference this week. As of September 30, 2009, the U.S. stockpile of nuclear weapons consisted of 5,113 warheads, with several thousand additional nuclear weapons awaiting dismantlement. It is hoped that disclosing this information will further U.S. non-proliferation efforts, and lead the way for other countries to be as transparent about their arsenal.

    Click here to read the fact sheet releasing the numbers from the United States Department of Defense.


    Tri-Valley CAREs and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference

    Tuesday, April 27, 2010
    Posted by Marylia Kelley

      On Saturday, May 1, 2010, Tri-Valley CAREs, Nuclear Watch New Mexico, Natural Resources Defense Council and Stop Essais, France will offer a workshop at the Riverside Church in NY on "Modernization of Nuclear Weapons Complexes and Warheads." Our workshop is part of the International Conference for a Nuclear-Free, Peaceful, Just and Sustainable World. Click here for the workshop flier.

      On Tuesday, May 4, 2010, Tri-Valley CAREs and colleagues from the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability will be conducting a workshop for diplomats and non-governmental organizations at the Church Center across from the UN Headquarters. The event is titled, "Nuclear Weapons Production in the Age of Obama." Click here for a workshop flier.

      Click here to learn more about the NPT Review Conference and why we are going.

      Click here to see the NPT NGO Conference- The International Conference for a Nuclear Free, Peaceful, Just and Sustainable World- Website. (Where you can even watch the Plenary Sessions live on Friday 4/30.


      GAO Blasts Budget Busting Mega-laser's "Scientific and Technical Challenges and Management Weaknesses"

      wednesday, April 14, 2010
      Posted by Marylia Kelley

        The Government Accountability Office's latest report on Livermore Lab's National Ignition Facility is quite damning in what it says, yet perhaps the bigger story is that GAO is still far too kind.

        Many of the scientific and technical problems that the GAO details in its April 2010 report are the same ones Tri-Valley CAREs and other NIF critics exposed years ago. At that time, Lab management said: if Congress will just give us a bit more time and more money, we will solve the problems.

        The NIF program has now received more than 15 years of time and $6 billion of our tax money. And? According to GAO, scientific hurdles abound at NIF. Technical problems have not been resolved. Management is weak. Peer review has been lacking (as to why, see the aforementioned "management is weak"). New materials may need to be invented, what's in use has fatal limitations.

        Click here to read more...

        Click here to read the GAO Report.


        A New START Today: Treaty is a Hopeful First Step, But Will Ratification Be Costly?

        Thursday, April 8, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

          President Obama and Russian President Medvedev signed a bilateral treaty today agreeing "on measures for the further reduction and limitation of strategic offensive arms." This treaty, known as New START (short for Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) commits both counties to reductions in the numbers of deployed strategic nuclear weapons to 1550, and delivery vehicles to 700. While this is a modest step in the right direction, it still leaves the two countries with enough nuclear firepower to ensure mutual destruction many times over.

          Click here to read more

          Click here to text of New START

          Click here to read the Protocols to of New START


        The Obama Administration's New Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) Elicits Some Cheers And Some Jeers

        Tuesday, April 6, 2010
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

          The Obama Administration finally released its much anticipated Nuclear Posture Review today. This policy guiding document contains changes that are worth cheering over, but others that are not in line with the stated nuclear abolition goals of the administration.

          Click here to read our press release.

          Click here to read the United States Department of Defense Nuclear Posture Review Report.


        Administration's Warhead Reuse Strategy Debated

        Tuesday, April 6, 2010
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

          The new Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) released today allows for current and expanded warhead Life Extension Programs, using strategies that weaponeers have dubbed "the three Rs -- Refurbishment, Reuse and Replacement." Refurbishment describes what the weapons designers are doing today, while the other two "Rs" describe significant expansions of current activities. As Tri-Valley CAREs has noted elsewhere, "Refurbishment" is already being used to put new capabilities into the arsenal, which we do not support. Taken together, the "Reuse" and "Replacement" options represent ever more far-reaching forays into the creation of new nuclear weapons. The new NPR defines the distinctions between the three "Rs" as follows: (1) Refurbishment of existing warheads, (2) Reuse of nuclear components from different warheads, and (3) Replacement of nuclear components. In the following news article, Roger Logan, former head of Directed Stockpile Work at Livermore Lab, explains the scientific risks inherent in the "Reuse" option, which could be used to mix and match nuclear components from different designs that, while tested in their original configurations, where never tested together. In contrast, the present head of the National Nuclear Security Administration, Tom D'Agostino, responds that increasing risks in warheads by tinkering with them unnecessarily (a la "Reuse") could be fine by him. Really. He says that.

          Click here to read the article...


        Tri-Valley CAREs' Executive Director Marylia Kelley Disusses Obama's Nuclear Policy On KQED Radio's 'The Forum'

        Wednesday, April 7, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

          Marylia Kelley, Tri-valley CAREs Executive Director joined four other guests, Baker Spring, research fellow in national security policy at The Heritage Foundation, David Sanger, domestic correspondent for The New York Times and author of "The Inheritance: The World Obama Confronts and the Challenges to American Power," and Gloria Duffy, president and CEO of The Commonwealth Club of California and former deputy assistant secretary of defense in the Clinton administration, on KQED Radio's 'The Forum With Michael Krasny' this morning. They discussed Obama's Nuclear Policy with a focus on the Nuclear Posture Review that the Administration released yesterday.

          Click here to listen to the full discussion.


        Thirty Four Arrested at Livermore Lab Protesting the Lab's Nuclear Weapons Activities

        Friday, April 2, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

          About 150 people hundred gathered shortly before 7 a.m. outside of the gates of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory on Friday, April 2nd to protest the lab's ongoing research and development of nuclear weapons. The demonstration is held yearly in honor of Good Friday. This year, lab security arrested 34 peaceful protestors at the gate who committed nonviolent direction by stepping accross the labs border. The protesters were cited and released, said Don Johnston, lab spokesman.

          The protest has been annual Easter Week event for about 20 years.The crowd was feeling some disappointment at the Obama's Administration's plans to increase the budget for the federal agency that oversees nuclear weapons, said Scott Yundt, staff attorney for Tri-Valley Communities Against a Radioactive Environment.The protest was organized by the Ecumenical Peace Institute and Livermore Conversion Project.

          Click here to read an article about the protest in the Contra Costa Times.


          Oops: Biological Accident Analysis Relied on By DOE for Livermore Bio-Warfare Lab Seriously Flawed.

          Wednesday, March 31, 2010
          Posted by Scott Yundt

            The Dept. of Energy Relied on an Army Biological Accident Scenario to Say that Livermore Lab's Bio-Warfare Agent Research Facility Will be Safe. Now, The National Academy of Sciences Finds Serious Flaws in the Army Analysis.

            Click here to read more.

            Click here to read the National Acadamy of Sciences' Evaluation the Army's EIS.


          Labs Confusing Self Interest with National Interest?

          Friday, March 26, 2010
          Posted by Scott Yundt

            Our Response to Letters from the Weapons Lab Directors Released at the House Armed Services Committee Strategic Forces Subcommittee Hearing on 3/25/10

            Click here to read more.

            Click here to see the Executive Summary to the JASON Report on the Life Extension Program for the U.S. Nuclear Weapons Stockpile.

            Click here to see LANL's Response Letter to Request Regarding JASON Report on the Life Extension Program for the U.S. Nuclear Weapons Stockpile.

            Click here to see SNL's Response Letter to Request Regarding JASON Report on the Life Extension Program for the U.S. Nuclear Weapons Stockpile.


          Citizen's Watch Newsletter Winter 2010

          Tuesday, March 9, 2010
          Posted by Scott Yundt

          Read Online

          PDF Download

          • Biggest Nuclear Weapons Budget Ever Proposed! Dr. Robert Civiak Analyzes our Bloated Fiscal Year 2011 Nuclear Weapons Budget.

          • Ugly Proposal to Relax Uranium Cleanup at Site 300 We Say "No Way!"

          • Connecting the Dots The Nuclear Posture Revew, Politics, New START Treaty and More...

          • Print Bites! have all the news thats fit to print.

          • Upcoming events Info on a special Tri-Valley CARES meeting and report back from DC Days.

          • Support Tri-Valley CAREs stopping nuclear weapons where they start.


        Tri-Valley CAREs' February Update

        Monday, February 22, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        Check out the Tri-Valley CAREs February update (also sent to our email list) for important upcoming news as well as some local events.

        Click here to read the update.


        Tri-Valley CAREs' Analysis of the Fiscal Year 2011 Nuclear Weapons Budget Request

        Monday, February 22, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        Dr. Robert Civiak, physicist and former Budget Examiner for DOE nuclear security activities at the White House Office of Management and Budget, has prepared a detailed analysis of the Fiscal Year 2011 budget request for nuclear weapons activities. His analysis exposes the inherent inconsistency of a policy of increasing funds for nuclear weapons with the Administration's purported vision of a world without them. The report includes a number of important recommendations to Congress for savings in the budget that would not sacrifice the safety or reliability of the stockpile.

        Click here to read our FY2011 budget analysis.


        Vice President Biden's Speech on Nuclear Security: A Wrongheaded Approach to Disarmament

        Monday, February 22, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        Last Thursday Vice President Biden made a speech entitled, 'The Path to Nuclear Security: Implementing the President's Prague Agenda' before an audience at the national Defense University in Wahsington, DC. His speech correctly focused on the importance of the New START agreement with Russia and The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty as the world's best defense against nuclear dangers. Unfortunately, he also justified the huge increase in nuclear weapons spending proposed in the DOE National Nuclear Security Administration's Fiscal Year 2011 budget request as a step toward achieving the goal of a nuclear security. Yet, funding for nuclear weapon modernization, new bomb plants, and wasteful lab projects, like NIF, does not match our vision for disarmament. Read the text of Biden's speech by clicking the link below and if you agree that this is the wrong strategy, take a few minutes to write a Letter to the Editor. You can also click on the link to my Letter to the Editor for inspiration.

        Click here to read the text of Biden's speech.

        Click here to read the text my Letter to the Editor.


        Another Beryllium Exposure at Livermore Lab

        Monday, February 22, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        According to the DOE's Office of Health, Safety and Security's 'Weekly Summary of Significant Occurences' from February 15-19, 2010, at Livermore Lab a journeyman machinist in Building 321A was accidently exposed while working on a Beryllium 'part' that was incorrectly indentified as non-hazardous.

        Click here to read the brief occurence statement.


        Livermore Lab Seeks $60 Million More for Nuclear Weapons Work in FY2011

        Monday, February 1, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        The Department of Energy's budget request, released today, contradicts President Obama's pledge to reduce the nuclear weapons threat by working toward their elimination. Instead, the spending plan boosts funding for nuclear weapons production facilities by $625 million from last year. $60 million more than last year is requested for Lawrence Livermore National Lab (LLNL)weapons activities (for a total of $1.050 billion) alone, the biggest one year requested funding increase in recent history.

        Secretary Chu highlighted the Department's intention to "reinvigorate" the National Labs. It appears that this reinvigoration even includes increasing funding for Lab projects that are over budget and behind schedule like the National Ignition Facility (NIF). Onee of the biggest ticket items at LLNL, NIF's funding request increased by 10% over last year, despite the fact that Lab scientists insist that the construction phase of the project is complete, which under the original project design should mean that funding needs would decrease.

        The FY2011 National Nuclear Security Administration's budget includes huge funding increases for nuclear weapon "modernization" (like an additional $200 million for B-61 bomb's 'stockpile system,' and funding for the CMRR Nuclear Facility at Los Alamos and the Uranium Processing Facility at Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, both large scale nuclear weapons production facilities.)

        "This budget request, if approved, dims our hopes that we will see eventual clean up of the toxic and radioactive mess created around the country by years of nuclear weapons development, dims our hopes of nuclear disarmament and peace in the foreseeable future and dims the world's hopes that the US would follow its international treaty obligations with respect to nuclear weapons." said Scott Yundt, staff attorney at Tri-Valley CARES in Livermore, California. Stay tuned for more on the budget and how you can voice opposition.

        Click here to read more about this in Tri-Valley CAREs' Press Release.


        January 2010 Nuclear Weapons Update...

        Thursday, January 14, 2010
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        Check out Tri-Valley CAREs recent update (also sent to our email list) for important upcoming news to watch out for as well as some local events.

        Click here to download the Update.


        Livermore Lab's 'Enron Accounting' Hides National Ignition Facility's True Costs

        Wednesday, December 9, 2009
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        An internal U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) study details how managers at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) shifted costs to understate total spending on the controversial National Ignition Facility (NIF) mega-laser. The previously secret document, released today by the nuclear watchdog group Tri-Valley CAREs, pegs the current hidden costs of NIF at $80 million annually.

        According to the report by the DOE National Nuclear Security Administration Office of Field Financial Management (OFFM), Livermore Lab's practice of assigning NIF overhead expenses to other Lab programs violates Public Law 100-679 Cost Accounting Standards (CAS). This law is an integral part of the structure set up to regulate government contracts. This illegal scheme circumvents the United States Congress, which sets NIF's budget each year, and violates our nation's most basic federal contracting laws.

        The NIF is being shielded by Lab management from paying its share of three distinct overhead costs, the General & Administrative (G&A) cost, the Site Support Rate, and the Management Fee rate, according to the review.

        Tri-Valley CAREs calls on the White House Office of Management and Budget, the Government Accountability Office and our members of Congress to investigate this financial scandal and to hold Livermore Lab management fully accountable for the laws that have been violated.

        Read our press release / Read the Report


        Citizen's Watch Newsletter November/December 2009

        Friday, November 20, 2009
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        Read Online

        PDF Download

        • Accounting Scandal at the NIF Livermore Lab hides enormous cost overruns.

        • Update on Biosuit Tri-Valley CAREs files Motion for Summary Judgment.

        • Action Alert! Help stop a new B61 nuclear bomb.

        • Upcoming events Info on a local celebration of the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

        • Support Tri-Valley CAREs stopping nuclear weapons where they start.


        Tri-Valley CAREs Files Motion to Stop Further Operation of a Biological Weapons Research Lab at LLNL

        Thursday, October 22, 2009
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        Yesterday, Livermore based non-profit Tri-Valley CAREs filed a motion for summary judgment in the Northern District of California under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) aiming to stop the operation of a bio-warfare agent research facility at the Lawrence Livermore National Lab (LLNL) main site in Livermore, California. The Dept. of Energy (DOE) began conducting experiments on January 25, 2008 on the basis of a faulty, unsupported "finding of no significant impact" (FONSI) without conducting a legally adequate environmental review and public comment process.

        Read our press release / Read the motion

        Citizen's Watch Newsletter Fall 2009

        Friday, October 16, 2009
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        Read Online

        PDF Download

        • Nuclear Materials at Livermore Lab plutonium still in the mix.

        • Gov't Doctor Resigns charges sick worker program flawed.

        • Youth and Mentors: Think Outside the Bomb!

        • Nuclear Weapons Budget new details emerge.

        • Remembrance Hiroshima at the gates of Livermore Lab

        • Obama Elevates Nulcear Disarmament before the UN security counsel

        • Petition to President Barack Obama on the global abolition of nuclear weapons

        • Support Tri-Valley CAREs stopping nuclear weapons where they start.


        Tri-Valley CAREs Submits Comments to Dep't of Homeland Security's Draft "Planning Guidance for Recovery Following Biological Incidents"

        Thursday, October 15, 2009
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was required by Congress to create Guidance for use in the response to an accidental or intentional "biological incident." This "Guidance" concerns us because Lawrence Livermore National Lab operates several biological weapon agent reserch laboratories, including the BSL-3 Lab that Tri-Valley CAREs has challenged for its lack of security, improper public input, and dangerous activities. The "Guidance" describes "a general risk management framework for government and nongovernmental decision-makers, at all levels, in planning and executing activities required for response and recovery from a biological incident in a domestic, civilian setting." Thus, if there was an accident or an intentional release or exsposure at one of LLNL's bio-labs, this "Guidance" would be used to, not only to coordinate the initial response, but to determine the decontamination and clean up standards as well. While the stated "objective of the guidance is to provide Federal, State, local and tribal decision makers with uniform Federal guidance to protect the public, emergency responders, and surrounding environments," it actually provides only very vague and time-consuming procedures for doing so. Our comment takes the DHS to task for the lack of substantive information provided in the "Guidance" and their attempts to set weak decontamination and clean up standards even though a deliberate or accidental release of biological agents can have disastrous consequences by exposing workers and the public to dangerous pathogens.

        To read the full text of our comment and the DHS Guidance click below.

        Click here for the full text of our Comment to the DHS.

        Click here to read the full text of the Dep't of Homeland Security's Draft "Planning Guidance for Recovery Following Biological Incidents." (Note: It is a large file)


        GAO Report Highlights Our Concerns Over the Safety and the Proliferation of Bio-labs Like the LLNL BSL-3

        Friday, October 2, 2009
        Posted by Scott Yundt

        The United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a much anticipated report on September 21, 2009 entitled 'HIGH-CONTAINMENT LABORATORIES- National Strategy for Oversight is Needed,' that has significant bearing on Tri-Valley CARE's ongoing federal lawsuit challenging LLNL's BSL-3 bio-warfare agent research facility. Following the Report's release, subcommittee hearings were held in both the United States Senate and House of Representatives where Nancy Kingsbury, Ph.D. and Managing Director at the GAO, gave testimony warning members of the grave concerns that the Report identified relating to the proliferation of high-containment laboratories working with dangerous biological pathogens. The LLNL BSL-3 is such a facility. Public concern over this issue gained the attention of the GAO because the deliberate or accidental release of biological agents can have disastrous consequences by exposing workers and the public to dangerous pathogens.

        Specifically, the Report found a failure of systems and procedures at high-containment laboratories similar to the LLNL BSL-3. It reveals a failure to comply with regulatory requirements, safety measures that were not commensurate with the level of risk to public health posed by laboratory workers and pathogens in the laboratories, and the failure of agencies to fund ongoing facility maintenance and monitor the operational effectiveness of laboratory physical infrastructure.

        The Report also highlights that (1) an ill-intentioned insider can pose a risk not only by passing on confidential information but also by removing dangerous material from a high-containment laboratory, and (2) it is impossible to have completely effective inventory control of biological material with currently available technologies. It further directs laboratory operators to develop and work through potential failure scenarios and to use that information to develop and put in place mechanisms to challenge procedures, systems, and equipment to ensure continuing effectiveness. This point significantly relates to our bio-suit and the concern that the LLNL BSL-3 is especially vulnerable to a terrorist attack. For more information about our lawsuit click on the bio-warfare link above.

        To read the full text of the Report and Nancy Kingsbury's testimony click below.

        Click here for the full GAO Report.

        Click here to read Nancy Kingsbury's testimony before the House Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security.


        Former Government Doctor Exposes Flaws in Sick Worker Compensation Program

        Wednesday, September 30, 2009
        Posted by Rob Schwartz

        Dr. Eugene Schwartz, the former medical director of the government's compensation program for nuclear weapons workers, resigned his position in May, claiming he was forced out for revealing flaws in the program. In April, Dr. Schwartz provided information to the Department of Labor and the Government Accountability Office, the congressional watchdog, exposing major flaws in the government's Site Exposure Matrix (SEM), a repository on toxic substances present at sites in the nuclear weapons complex. The SEM is used to determine a claimant's eligibility for compensation. Dr. Schwartz confirmed what many claimants already suspected: the SEM includes an incomplete list of diseases and inconsistent, incomplete, or missing linkages between exposure to toxic substances and disease. As a result, many individuals are having their claims improperly denied. The problems that Dr. Schwartz identified have impacted claimants from Livermore and Sandia labs.

        Dr. Ray Meister from the Medical Screening Program for Former Workers of LBNL, LLNL, and SNL will be on hand at the upcoming Sick Worker Support Group Meeting on October 7th, 2009 at the Livermore Main Library, Community Room A from 10-noon to speak about related issues.

        Click here to read more.

        Click here to see the 10-7-09 Sick Worker Support Group Meeting Agenda.


        More Than 300 Groups Ask Senate for Stronger Climate Bill

        Wednesday, August 26, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        A broad coalition of more than 300 faith, human-rights, social justice, and environmental groups sent a letter to U.S. senators today calling for energy and climate legislation that is much stronger than the Waxman-Markey bill that passed the House of Representatives June 26. That bill contained massive giveaways to polluting special interests and would fail to ensure a rapid transition to clean energy.

        Click here to access the letter.
        Click here to read our press release.


        Vote Today and Support Tri-Valley CAREs

        Friday, August 7, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        Singer-Guitarist Bonnie Raitt has generously offered to benefit Tri-Valley CAREs - and your "votes" will help determine the amount that we will receive.

        Bonnie is touring this summer with legendary blues guitarist, Taj Mahal, and they are asking YOU to help determine the activism their tour will support.

        If you would like to help sustain Tri-Valley CAREs, take a quick moment to log onto the BonTaj tour site at http://www.bontaj.com/charity-on-tour.aspx and cast your vote to fund "Safe & Sustainable Energy."

        Why "Safe & Sustainable Energy"? Because this is the category on the BonTaj tour site that includes Tri-Valley CAREs. The more votes, the greater the gift.

        You may recall that last year, Bonnie Raitt demonstrated her commitment to our issues by donating some of the proceeds from her 2008 concerts to Tri-Valley CAREs. We appreciate her support and welcome the generosity of Taj Mahal, too.

        Your 2009 "vote" is simple, fast and totally free.

        Click here to go right to the ballot!

        Please vote for us today. And, pass this on to friends!

        We thank you.

        Peace,
        Marylia Kelley
        Executive Director
        Tri-Valley CAREs


        August 6, 2009 - Hiroshima and Nagasaki Commemoration

        Friday, August 7, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Thanks to everyone who attended this year's commemoration and protest.

        Click here to check out photographs from the event.
        Click here to read news articles about the event.


        Petition to President Obama for the abolition of Nuclear Weapons

        Monday, August 3, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        We wholeheartedly applaud President Obama for declaring, "I state clearly and with conviction America's commitment to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons." We commend President Obama for his courageous and historic recognition that "as the only nuclear power to have used a nuclear weapon, the United States has a moral responsibility to act." We call on President Obama to make good on that commitment and fullfill that responsibility by announcing at the 2010 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference his initiation of good faith multilateral negotiations on an international agreement to abolish nuclear weapons, within our lifetimes! Yes we can!

        Click here to download a PDF of the petition.


        Citizen's Watch Newsletter June/July, 2009

        Friday, July 17, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Read Online

        PDF Download

        • Hazardous Waste Building Closure building 419 may close.

        • Bomb Budget: more money for nukes, less for cleanup.

        • By and for Youth: Think Outside the Bomb!

        • Livermore Lab Security Failures new details emerge.

        • Support Tri-Valley CAREs stopping nuclear weapons where they start.


        The Truth about NIF: Some Facts to Consider

        Monday, July 6, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley and Adrian Drummond-Cole

        The National Ignition Facility (NIF) will use plutonium, the radioactive core in nuclear bombs. Plutonium in NIF will cause nuclear waste, radioactive emissions and worker exposures, according to the Lab's own environmental impact statement (EIS).

        NIF will use tritium, the radioactive hydrogen in H-bombs. NIF's deuterium-tritium targets will be produced in Livermore, according to the EIS. Tritium puts our environment at risk.

        NIF is for nuclear weapons, not energy. NIF's mission is to train the next generation of nuclear bomb designers. Only 15% of its experiments will be available for non-weapons related purposes, according to the Government Accountability Office and the Dept. of Energy.

        NIF has technical problems that make its goal of ignition unlikely.

        NIF cost more than $5 billion and its future operating costs will be nearly a half-billion dollars per year, according to the budget.

        Wouldn't our tax money be better spent turning Livermore away from more nuclear weapons research and into a "green lab" instead?


        Think Outside the Bomb (TOTB) National Conference

        Monday, June 29, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        You are invited. The TOTB conference will take place in Albuquerque, New Mexico this August 13-16. For five years, Think Outside the Bomb has brought young people together to share resources, strategize collaboratively, and build a widespread movement for nuclear disarmament.

        More than simply educating students on nuclear issues, TOTB aims to engage every single participant intellectually, emotionally, and personally. We seek to give each participant not only the inspiration to work for a nuclear-free future for the coming year, but the tools and skills to do that work and the opportunity and camaraderie to start this organizing.

        TOTB conferences are uniquely organized almost entirely by youth and have proven to be life-changing experiences for the participants.

        Attendees can expect to receive information and build skills during the conference to make their activism towards peace and justice in a nuclear-free world a reality in their communities and across the country. Emphasis is placed on training for direct political activism. Limited travel stipends are available. Once in Albuquerque, room and board will be provided.

        Those interested in attending this year's conference can get more information and apply at www.thinkoutsidethebomb.org.


        Livermore Rodeo Parade

        Monday, June 22, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Thanks to everyone who participated in Tri-Valley CAREs' entry in this year's Livermore Rodeo Parade!

        Photographs from the parade are online in our Photos & Video section. Click on the 'TVC in the Community' tab.


        The National Almost IF

        Monday, June 22, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Les Miklosy, former computer scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, offers compelling testimony regarding his experiences working on the National Ignition Facility:

        "If you pursue a career in physics, chemistry or engineering and you are considering a professional position with the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, then before you accept an offer to work for this facility, you should read this article."

        Click here to view the entire article.

        Click here to view a longer history of the NIF by Les Miklosy.


        House Armed Services Committee Robs Needed Cleanup Funds to Increase Weapons Budget, National Ignition Facility

        Friday, June 19, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        The House Armed Services subcommittee mark includes $14.3 billion for fiscal year 2010 Dept. of Energy (DOE) Atomic Energy Defense Activities, exclusive of defense nuclear nonproliferation funds.

        Within that amount, the subcommittee mark increases the DOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) stockpile stewardship program by $152 million over the President's request.

        To accomplish this, the subcommittee mark reallocates $20 million from prior year unobligated balances and, most significantly, specifies a shift of more than $100 million from the DOE Defense Environmental Cleanup account to certain Stockpile Stewardship activities.

        Chief among the NNSA Stockpile stewardship facilities to receive an additional largesse from the subcommittee mark is the National Ignition Facility (NIF) at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. The subcommittee mark would increase the NIF budget by $32 million for the coming fiscal year.

        Click here to read more.


        Tri-Valley CAREs' Annual Strategic Planning

        Monday, June 8, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Saturday, July 18.
        9:45 AM - 4 PM.
        United Christian Church,
        1886 College Ave.,
        Livermore

        Attention all Tri-Valley CAREs members, volunteers, staff and board members! Help a respected, effective nuclear "watchdog." Give peace, justice and the environment a plan!

        If you are a Tri-Valley CAREs' member, supporter, volunteer, staff or board member we need you to help us plan and carry out our strategy in the coming months.

        Are you interested?

        RSVP by phone or email and plan to bring a potluck dish to share: 925-443-7148, marylia@trivalleycares.org


        U.S. Government Inadvertently Posts List of Facilities With Nuclear Materials

        Thursday, June 4, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        Today the New York Times and Washington Post ran stories about the U.S. government accidentally posting on the web its list of locations handling nuclear materials like uranium and plutonium and declared to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

        Embarrassing mistake or significant security breach?

        Our reading of the document's 266 pages suggests the former. For example...

        Of great interest to us is that Livermore Lab is mentioned in several places on the list. Nuclear power projects in Livermore Lab Buildings 132 South, 281 and 190 are specifically listed.

        Does this pose security risks above and beyond those that already exist at the Lab? Probably not.

        Building 332, the Livermore Lab plutonium facility, which also stores most of the site's highly enriched uranium, is not mentioned at all.

        Which brings us to an observation. Perhaps the news here is not the posting of the list, but rather the number of U.S. facilities housing nuclear bomb-making materials, including materials declared "excess" to U.S. nuclear weapons programs, that are NOT presently under IAEA safeguards. Hmmmm....

        Click here for 13 MB PDF Site List, which is no longer available on the government printing office website.

        (Our appreciation to Stephen Aftergood of the Federation of American Scientists for breaking this story in Secrecy News on June 1)

        Marylia Kelley, Tri-Valley CAREs' executive director, responds to the document's release on ABC 7 news:

        http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/video?id=6847253


        Citizen's Watch Newsletter April/May, 2009

        Thursday, June 4, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Click here to read online.

        Download the PDF

        • From DC. Your team is back. Get the latest.

        • NIF Ceremony. We bring a NIF Truth Telling Exhibit.

        • Strategic Planning. Should you come? Find out.

        • New Report. by six national and regional groups.

        • Peace and a Parade, too. Circle the date!

        • Rummage and Bake Sale. Our fundraising.

        • Illegal Bio-Experiments Read all about it.


        NIF Ceremony, Controversy and Critics

        Monday, June 1, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        On Friday, some of us were at the Lab with our NIF truth display and evidence table with documentation of the facility's weapons applications, plutonium use, technical problems and other facts that were not being told at the official ceremony.

        Click here to check out the story by science reporter, Suzanne Bohan, of Bay Area News Group, which owns the Contra Costa Times, San Jose Mercury News, Valley Times, Tri-Valley Herald and other papers.

        Also, enjoy this video report from KGO, ABC Channel 7, featuring Marylia Kelley of Tri-Valley CAREs:

        http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/video?id=6839430


        Congressional Commission Releases "Disappointing" Report

        Tuesday, June 1, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        After deliberating for a year, the bi-partisan Congressional Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States finally released its report in May.

        Upon reading it, the first three words that come to mind are: "disappointing," "mishmash" and "regressive." Here's why... (click in)


        U.S. Loses Another Nuke

        Tuesday, April 14, 2009
        Posted by Janine Carmona

        According to the BBC:

        "The United States abandoned a nuclear weapon beneath the ice in northern Greenland following a crash in 1968...

        Other officials who have seen classified files on the accident confirmed the abandonment of a weapon.

        The Pentagon declined to comment on the investigation, referring back to previous official studies of the incident.

        But the crash, clear-up and mystery of the lost bomb have continued to haunt those involved at the time - and those who live in the region now - with continued concerns over the environmental and health impact of the events of that day in 1968."

        Click here to read the entire article.


        Transforming the U.S. Strategic Posture and Weapons Complex For Transition to a Nuclear Weapons-Free World

        Thursday, April 9, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Transforming the U.S. Strategic Posture and Weapons Complex For Transition to a Nuclear Weapons-Free World

        The Nuclear Weapons Complex Consolidation Policy Network has released "Transforming the U.S. Strategic Posture and Weapons Complex for Transition to a Nuclear Weapons-Free World," a major study advocating a total stockpile of 500 nuclear warheads and a weapons complex downsized from eight sites to three.

        Download the PDF version of our report, the report summary, or map.


        Press Advisory: Transforming the U.S. Strategic Posture and Weapons Complex For Transition to a Nuclear Weapons-Free World

        Monday, April 6, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        The Nuclear Weapons Complex Consolidation Policy Network will release "Transforming the U.S. Strategic Posture and Weapons Complex for Transition to a Nuclear Weapons-Free World," Wednesday, April 8, 2009, 9:00 A.M. - 11:00 A.M. EST. Location: Root Room of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1779 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC. Teleconference dial-in Number: (641) 715-3635, Access Code: 539953#

        Contributors to the report include Tri-Valley CAREs, Natural Resources Defense Council, Nuclear Watch New Mexico, Physicians for Social Responsibility - Greater Kansas City Chapter, Just Peace, and the Project on Government Oversight. The report is the result of a collaborative project supported by the Connect U.S. Fund.

        Lead report author Dr. Robert Civiak, a physicist and former White House OMB budget examiner, will summarize major recommendations and findings.

        Following that briefing, senior researchers from the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Federation of American Scientists will discuss the conclusions of a new joint report, "From Counterforce to Minimal Deterrence: A New Nuclear Policy on the Path Toward Eliminating Nuclear Weapons."

        Both reports are being released at the time the congressionally appointed Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States readies its report. And, both reports contain steps for the Obama Administration to follow toward "the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons," as the President stated in Prague, Czech Republic, on Sunday, April 5.

        To better accommodate reporters in other time zones, an additional press teleconference will be held at 1:00 P.M. EST, Wednesday, April 8, 2009, at the Natural Resources Defense Council, 1200 New York Avenue, NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC. By phone: 1-866-901-2585; please ask for "nuclear report." Journalists only, please.

        The Network's report's executive summary, full report and map of the current and proposed nuclear weapons complex will be available at www.trivalleycares.org and www.nukewatch.org in advance of its release in order to give journalists an opportunity to read it and formulate questions. The report is EMBARGOED, however, until AFTER the above-listed release events of April 8, 2009. Contact marylia@trivalleycares.org for further details.

        Contact Info:
        Bob Civiak, Lead Author, 603.448.5327, cell 603 715.0817, civiak@wildblue.net
        Christopher Paine, NRDC, 202.289.2370, cell 202.422.4853, cpaine@nrdc.org
        Jay Coghlan, Nuclear Watch NM, 505.989.7342, cell 505.920.7118, jay@nukewatch.org
        Ingrid Drake, POGO, 202.347.1122, cell 202.577.3437, idrake@pogo.org
        Marylia Kelley, Tri-Valley CAREs, 925.443.7148, cell 925.255.3589, marylia@trivalleycares.org
        Mavis Belisle, Just Peace of Texas, cell 806.340.9358, justpeace4@yahoo.com
        Ann Suellentrop, PSR Kansas City Chapter, 913.342.0587, annsuellen@gmail.com


        Tri-Valley CAREs in the news

        Thursday, April 2, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Tri-Valley CAREs and friends are "in the news" today -- on the Livermore Lab's National Ignition Facility (Chronicle) and on the environmental pollution in our community from past nuclear weapons projects (Contra Costa Times and other papers).

        Click here to read the articles in our press room.


        DOE Declares NIF Laser "Complete"; Leading Researcher Discloses Design Deficiencies

        Tuesday, March 31, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        The National Ignition Facility (NIF), a mega-laser at Livermore Lab that is intended to train the next generation of nuclear bomb designers is back in the news. Not because of its bloated $5 billion price tag, or because of the government's decision to use plutonium as well as fusion targets in NIF.

        Nope, NIF is in the news because its construction has been declared complete. It will be used by bomb designers.

        But will NIF meet its more challenging scientific goal of ignition?

        It will not, according to the March 28 analysis of Stephen Bodner, former head of laser fusion at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory. Read: "NIF Laser Fails to Meet the Minimum Specifications Required for their Ignition Target Designs."

        Then, read the government's press release of March 31, "Department of Energy Announces Completion of World's Largest Laser."

        In the classic struggle between science and public relations, the point goes to Bodner. Click here for Dr. Bodner's biography.


        Janine Carmona on KPFA

        Monday, March 23, 2009
        Posted by Janine Carmona

        Check out my recent appearance on KPFA's La Honda Bajita show with Tara in the Earth Alert segment. La Honda Bajita airs every third Friday of the month and it's a fantastic show. I urge you all to tune in. Listen to the archive of the show featuring me here.


        Citizen's Watch Newsletter February/March, 2009

        Tuesday, March 17, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Read online / Download the PDF
        including:

        • Victory Nuclear Pork Cut from Final Stimulus Bill

        • Cleanup and the Stimulus A Slightly More Complicated Story

        • Partial Win Partial Loss in Our Ongoing Bio-Lawsuit

        • Tri-Valley CAREs Brings the Grassroots to Washington, D.C. You Can Help

        • Upcoming Events Good Friday Action

        • Report Back on Two Events King Day Celebration, UC Regents Meeting

        • EPA Levies Fine Superfund Violations


        Stimulus Bill Letter

        Thursday, February 5, 2009
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Tri-Valley CAREs has signed onto a letter to the Senate appropriators asking that the $1 billion set aside for National Nuclear Security Administration in the Senate version of the stimulus bill be removed.

        Please review the letter, sign, and send it to your senators.

        Dear Senator,

        We write to express concern over the $1 billion proposed for the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) in S.336, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. With Congress seeking to make substantial cuts in the total price tag of the bill, we strongly urge you to eliminate the $1 billion for NNSA. This money is not a cost effective way of accomplishing S.336's primary stated goals of creating jobs, restoring economic growth and strengthening America's middle class. Moreover, it would be premature to make major investments in NNSA's nuclear weapons research and production infrastructure, which the agency proposes to revitalize through "Complex Transformation." NNSA has a long history of cost overruns and poor management, and is one of the least likely agencies to give taxpayers a sound return on their investment when economic stimulus is so vitally needed. Finally, it is unlikely that this money will go towards preventing terrorism.

        Congress has repeatedly noted that the United States lacks clear nuclear weapons policies. Adding $1 billion to NNSA's $9 billion budget is an 11% increase, a poor investment when there is such a policy vacuum. The 2008 Defense Authorization Act requires that the Obama Administration complete a nuclear posture and policy review. Until the Obama Administration addresses such issues as posture, force structure, size and scope of the nuclear complex, it would be premature to make any decisions about what infrastructure projects are needed. Conversely, making major investments in the complex could potentially prejudice the final outcome of any posture review that the Obama Administration conducts.

        Since its inception in 1999, the NNSA has continually experienced significant cost overruns and oversight problems. According to several GAO reports, NNSA had not been fully effective in managing its safeguards and security program. The reports found that there was weakness in security culture, organization, staffing and training. Additionally, two of NNSA's major projects, the National Ignition Facility (NIF) and the Dual Axis Radiographic Hydrodynamic Test Facility, "experienced major delays and cost overruns because of problems with project management and are still not complete." The NIF alone, originally expected to cost approximately $2.1 billion upon its completion in 2002, is still not operational and is expected to cost more than $3 billion. While this money is likely not going to these projects, NNSA should not be rewarded for their poor track record with an additional $1 billion.

        Senators should also realize that these funds are unlikely to go towards preventing nuclear terrorism, as DOE spends at least 67 percent of its budget on weapons. The Director of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) did not mention using any potential stimulus money for securing the incredibly vulnerable highly enriched uranium, which only a few years ago was a priority security issue that could not be addressed due to a lack of funding. Also, these funds will not likely go towards expediting the removal of bomb-grade plutonium and highly enriched uranium from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Recent security tests failure demonstrate that the Lab's nuclear materials pose a significant risk to its surrounding residential community.

        With Congress seeking to make substantial cuts in the total price tag of the bill, we strongly urge you to eliminate the $1 billion for NNSA. Thank you in advance for your consideration.

        Should you have any questions, please contact:

        Nickolas Roth
        Program Director
        Alliance For Nuclear Accountability
        (p) 202-544-0217
        (f) 202-544-6143
        nroth@ananuclear.org

        National Organization Signatures

        Danielle Brian
        Executive Director
        Project On Government Oversight

        David Culp
        Legislative Representative
        Friends Committee on National Legislation

        Ambassador Robert Grey
        Director
        Bipartisan Security Group

        Susan Gordon
        Director
        Alliance for Nuclear Accountability

        Darryl Fagin
        Legislative Director
        Americans for Democratic Action, Inc.

        William Hartung
        Director
        Arms and Security Initiative, New America Foundation

        Mark W. Harrison
        Director, Peace with Justice Program
        United Methodist General Board of Church and Society

        John Isaacs
        Executive Director
        Council for a Livable World

        Terri Lodge
        Director of Government Affairs
        Ploughshares Fund
        Coordinator Arms Control Advocacy Collaborative

        Paul Kawika Martin
        Organizing, Political and PAC Director
        Peace Action & Peace Action Education Fund

        Lorelei Kelly
        National Security Director
        American Progressive Caucus Policy Foundation

        Susan Shaer
        Executive Director
        Women's Action for New Directions

        Paul F. Walker, Ph.D.
        Director, Security and Sustainability
        Global Green USA

        Dr. Peter Wilk
        Executive Director
        Physicians for Social Responsibility

        Ron Zucker
        Legislative Director
        2020 Vision

        State Organizations

        Joni Arends
        Executive Director
        Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety

        Beatrice Brailsford
        Program director
        Snake River Alliance, Idaho

        Jay Coghlan
        Executive Director
        Nuke Watch, New Mexico

        Amanda Hill
        Development Director
        Georgia Women's Action for New Directions

        Marylia Kelley
        Executive Director
        Tri-Valley CAREs, California

        Eileen McCabe
        Acting for a Greener World
        Nuclear Policy Advisor, Utah

        Judith Mohling
        Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center, Colorado

        Deanna Taylor
        Green Party of Utah
        National delegate

        Click here to download the letter as a PDF.


        Accidental Explosion at Livermore Lab

        Thursday, January 29, 2009
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        The information below is from the Department of Energy website and tells of a recent accident at the Bay Area's Livermore Lab involving an explosion with radioactive material and breach of containment in multiple gloveboxes.

        The DOE account raises as many questions as it answers, and Tri-Valley CAREs will submit a Freedom of Information Act request to follow up. So, read on... and check this space for further updates as they become available.

        http://www.hss.energy.gov/CSA/Analysis/ll/occur/010509-010909.pdf


        Energy Dept. Issues Decisions Today To Build New Nuclear Bomb Plants, Endanger Communities

        Friday, December 19, 2008
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        Tri-Valley CAREs Charges Department is "Locking in" Provocative Nuclear Weapons Decisions in Waning Days of Bush Administration; Calls on Government to Downsize Weapons Complex, Prioritize Removal of Bomb-making Materials from Livermore Lab

        Click here to read the complete press release.


        Bay Area Group Sues to Compel Open Government, Enforce Public Right to Know

        Tuesday, December 2, 2008
        Posted by Marylia Kelley

        This morning, Tri-Valley CAREs filed a lawsuit in federal district court in San Francisco against the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and its National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). The suit alleges numerous violations of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the nation's key open government law enacted to ensure public access to federal government records.

        Read our press release / Read our complaint

        Tri-Valley CAREs' Comments on the Final Complex Transformation SPEIS

        Friday, November 21, 2008
        Posted by Adrian Drummond-Cole

        Read our response to the Final Complex Transformation SPEIS, including comments on the Curatorship Alternative, Reliable Replacement Warhead (RRW), Kansas City Plant, and more...

        Read Online / Download as PDF

1   2   3