Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)

New Zealand declares nuclear free zone 1963-1985

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

In 1963, the CND began their campaign by organizing a petition they called “No Bombs South of the Line,” which argued for the establishment of a nuclear free zone in southern New Zealand. The CND collected over 80,000 signatures which was the largest petition in New Zealand since the petition calling for equal voting rights between women and men collected in 1893.

Canadians sit-down for nuclear disarmament of the United States Bomarc Missile in La Macaza, Quebec, 1964

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

In fall 1958, Canadian Prime Minister John Diefenbaker agreed to house 56 American Bomarc missiles in North Bay, Ontario and La Macaza, Quebec, in keeping with the terms of the NORAD agreement. The American manufacturers designed the Bomarc missiles to be fitted with nuclear warheads, but when the missiles arrived in Canada, the nuclear warhead parts had not yet arrived.

Environmentalists prevent construction of nuclear reactor in Belene, Bulgaria 2002-2012

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

The Belene Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) in northern Bulgaria was originally proposed in the mid-1980s. The project was cancelled in the 1992, after significant environmentalist campaigning, when it became clear that the seismic risk in the region was unacceptable. Indeed, 120 people had died in an earthquake only 14km from the project site in 1977. There was also concern that the project would not be economically viable.

Native American and environmentalist groups block nuclear waste site in Ward Valley, California, 1995-2000

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

In March of 1988, U.S. Ecology, a national dump operating company, decided upon Ward Valley, California as the most desired location for building a new nuclear waste dump. Because this was federal land in the state, the government of California needed to buy Ward Valley land from the Bureau of Land Management in order to give U.S. Ecology the rights to build the dump. The Valley, however, is located in the Mojave Desert, an area home to an endangered species of desert tortoise considered sacred to a number of Native American tribes.

U.S. Anti-nuclear activists partially block establishment of nuclear power plant in Limerick, PA, 1977-82

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

In the early 1970s, the state of Pennsylvania proposed a plan for building a nuclear power plant in Limerick, PA, to provide power to residents in Montgomery County, PA. Around that time, the Environmental Protection Agency declared that the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) must conduct a study to determine the impact a nuclear power plant would have in the town of Limerick, and the surrounding county.

South Koreans stop plan for nuclear waste dump on Gulup Island, 1994-95

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

In the 1980’s and 90’s South Korea’s nuclear industry was growing, and the Korean environmental and anti-nuclear movement grew along with it. During the 1980’s, over fifty percent of the country’s electricity came from nuclear power, so that by the end of the decade, storage of the radioactive waste posed a formidable challenge as on-site storage facilities began to reach capacity.

Oregonians protest and occupy Trojan nuclear power plant, United States, 1977-1978

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

When Oregonians received notice in 1968 that the Portland General Electric Company (PGE) planned to install a nuclear power plant in Rainier Oregon, concerned citizens began to work within the political structure to prevent the plant from entering the community. Based on the anti-nuclear sentiment in the US at the time, many Oregonians were wary of the environmental repercussions of a nuclear power plant. Many also considered the construction and upkeep of the plant an unwise allocation of state money.

Residents protest, gain closure of Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant, USA, 2005-2013

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

The Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power plant has been running since 1972 in its home of Vernon, Vermont. Vermont Yankee was born at a time when environmentalists were cracking down on nuclear power. In between the 1970’s and 1990’s, numerous protests took place all across the country against the manufacturing and maintaining of nuclear power facilities. Activists were further ignited by the detrimental accident at Three Mile Island 1979, which marked the worst nuclear meltdown in US history.

German environmentalists hold in place nuclear phase-out plan, 2008-2011

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

On the cover of its 7 July 2008 issue, Der Spiegel, one of the largest and most respected news sources in Europe, depicted the international symbol of the anti-nuclear movement (a smiling sun with the words “NUCLEAR POWER? NO THANKS” surrounding it) languishing half-submerged in the ocean with an accompanying caption that read “Atomkraft - Das unheimliche Comeback” (Nuclear Power: Its Eerie Comeback).

Filipinos protest against Bataan Nuclear Power Plant and U.S. military bases, 1983-1986

Anti-Nuclear Power Movement (1960s-1980s)
 

In July 1973, then-Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos announced the decision to build the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) in response to the Philippines’ economic crisis at the time. The Middle East oil embargo was putting incredible stress on the Philippine economy. For the Marcos regime, investing in nuclear power was the solution to their dependence on imported oil and energy demands. However, Bataan residents and Philippine citizens responded in fierce opposition to the new plant due to its threat to public health.

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