Meetings this week: Santa Fe Wednesday 10/28, Albuquerque Thursday 10/29
October 26, 2015
Dear friends –
Our next meeting is in Santa Fe on Wednesday, October 28, at 6:00 pm. Please RSVP to this meeting so we can plan accordingly, and we will tell you how to get to the meeting place. Space is limited. This is not a public meeting but if you have a friend you think would be interested please give us a call at 505-265-1200 or write Trish.
We will then meet in Albuquerque the following day, Thursday, October 29, also at 6:00 pm. This meeting will be at the Study Group office, 2901 Summit Place NE.
At these meetings we will briefly present and discuss with you:
- The current state of progress toward an international prohibition on the possession, transfer, and use of nuclear weapons. Trish and Greg have just returned from the UN General Assembly and we are monitoring developments there closely from here, New York, and Geneva.
- The ongoing fiasco in disposing of 34+ tons of excess U.S. plutonium, currently slated to be processed in the Santa Fe metro area over the next couple of decades for shipment to South Carolina and manufacture there into nuclear reactor fuel that no commercial operator wants. The Study Group is promoting disposal of this material at WIPP. We also advocate further study of direct disposal at WIPP without plutonium processing, the so-called "sterilization" option. Trish will post some of the key references between now and Wednesday on a new "plutonium disposition" web page. In the meantime please see "Direct disposal is better solution for South Carolina's plutonium problem," by Ed Lyman and Frank von Hippel. We discussed this issue with Frank and others in Princeton 8 days ago, not for the first time and with congressional staff this past week.
- The current state of efforts to expand warhead core (pit) production infrastructure and capacity for new warhead types, also in the Santa Fe metro area. Teaser: it is clear to us from meetings on Capitol Hill that at present all parties assume no interest or resistance from Santa Fe. You and we must change that.
- Possible new Study Group member committees. We are thinking of Outreach and Action committees. It is difficult for me to avoid using words like ridicule, satire, and protest in relation to the second one. So be thinking. We are. Frustrated with activism about our converging crises? Channel that and have fun with your friends. We really do need help.
- If we stand up volunteer committees we will also need more frequent meetings, which must quickly pay off in terms of visibility, leverage, and funding. Shall we then, or not? The answer depends on how active people want to be. With too few exceptions, the message we get from New Mexico is one of passivity and victimhood. We aren't into that.
We may have a short presentation from outside the state via Skype at each of these meetings. Stay tuned.
Don't forget, please RSVP right away for the Santa Fe meeting if you have not done so already!
For more background and suggestions please see our previous letter to you of October 7 announcing these meetings.
Best wishes to everybody,