If You Love This Planet, Dr. Helen Caldicott

More on Australian uranium mining with Senator Scott Ludlam of the Australian Greens


Dr. Caldicott measuring radiation levels with a Geiger counter during her trip to the Western Australia Goldfields uranium sites with Senator Scott Ludlam

Dr. Caldicott measuring radiation levels with a Geiger counter during her trip to the Western Australia Goldfields uranium sites with Senator Scott Ludlam

Dr. Caldicott interviews Scott Ludlam, Australian Greens Senator for Western Australia, about the uranium industry in Australia.

Sen. Ludlam was elected to the federal Senate in November 2007, and has campaigned for a nuclear-free Australia and nuclear-free world, Aboriginal land rights, energy market reform, and action on climate change, trade and globalization issues. At the start of the show, he explains why Australia has 40% of the world’s low-cost uranium reserves, the current state of Australian uranium mining, and the history of uranium mining in that country. He talks about how in the past, unions refused to mine uranium, but that ban was overturned. As he and Dr. Caldicott address the present growth of uranium mining in Australia, Ludlam explains how the environmental movement and native Aborigines have in some cases worked together to try to prevent mines on ancient Aboriginal lands. Read Uranium Mining and Aboriginal People.

Dr. Caldicott asks Sen. Ludlam about the enormous health hazards to the men who mine uranium. They look at the whole picture of the cycle from uranium mining to nuclear weapons and nuclear power production, and how uranium becomes more and more deadly along the way. Sen. Ludlam and Dr. Caldicott recently flew to one of the richest uranium sites in western Australia to draw attention to the dangers of uranium mining. Read his account of that expedition, Three days in the goldfields: on the trail of the uranium miners, which links to a photo gallery of the trip.

Senator Scott Ludlam

Scott Ludlam

In exploring how Australia contributes to the danger of a global nuclear holocaust, Dr. Caldicott and Sen. Ludlam look at the denial mechanism of uranium and defense workers who prefer not to think about their contribution to nuclear war or cancer, how Australian uranium may be sold to both Russia and China, and the major role of the Pine Gap base in Australia. Sen. Ludlam visited the base and Dr. Caldicott is keenly interested in what transpired. They talk about the role of Pine Gap, the largest U.S. installation in Australia, in tracking defense satellites, spying, missile defense, weaponizing space, and targeting sites for a U.S./Russian nuclear war. Dr. Caldicott talks about the insanity of continuing to plan for a nuclear holocaust. They end the interview by looking at how the media ignores the continuing U.S./Russian nuclear war danger which threatens all life on earth. It is imperative that the media educate people about this reality, Dr. Caldicott says. Sen. Ludlam says he is gratified that younger people are involved in antinuclear activism.

For more on the fight to stop Australian uranium mining, visit these websites: People for a Nuclear-Free Australia, ANAWA (Antinuclear Alliance of Western Australia), Australian Conservation Foundation, Roxstop, and Friends of the Earth Australia. Read the artiicle, Uranium mine linked to US arms dealer.

For more on the health effects on miners, weapons plant workers and communities from exposure to uranium and other nuclear weapons materials, read Health Impacts for Uranium Mine and Mill Residents, Memories Come To Us In the Rain and the Wind: Oral Histories and Photographs of Navajo Uranium Miners & Their Families, and Tennessee’s sick nuclear workers get $1 billion.

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