Think nuclear is clean energy? Ask the Nigeriens (The Ecologist)

Carolyn Lebel
1st June, 2010

As the new nuclear renaissance grows, so too does uranium extraction. In Niger, which boasts some of the world’s richest deposits, NGOs saythat the poor are being exploited for the West’s ‘clean energy’.

In the heart of the Sahara lie some of the world’s largest uranium deposits. Until recently, the region had held little interest to the world’s trading partners, save France. Desert tribes, predominantly Tuareg nomads, had been mostly free to roam its vast,
barren expanse; living off what little bounty it had to offer. Then a few years ago, rising fuel prices and climate change revived
interest in the atom.
Countries like Britain, India and the US began reconsidering the nuclear option. In January 2008, the British Government also
gave the green light to new nuclear power, arguing that it would be good for the environment and national security. Around the
world, and most keenly in emerging economies, new nuclear power programmes were being launched. Uranium was making a
Niger, one of the world’s poorest countries, started to find itself at the centre of a lucrative export market. The government
issued hundreds of exploration permits to prospectors from around the world. The search for uranium covered some 85,000
square kilometres along the Sahara’s mineral dense geological fissure.



… read more:


…vous trouverez en pièce jointe un article du magazine “The Ecologist”
(en Anglais) écrit par Il traite de l’impact de l’extraction de
l’uranium au Niger, du travail initial de la CRIIRAD et d’AGHIR IN MAN
(2003) et de la récente étude conduite en novembre 2009 par GREENPEACE
avec le soutien scientifique du laboratoire de la CRIIRAD. L’article
peut être partiellement téléchargé sur
Je joins une version PDF de l’article complet écrit par Carolyn Lebel
mais ce texte ne doit pas être mis en ligne sur internet à cause du

Par contre vous pouvez télécharger et diffuser sans contrainte les
rapports de la CRIIRAD sur le Niger (2010) et le rapport de GREENPEACE
(2010) à l’adresse
Le rapport de GREENPEACE (60 pages) est en Anglais mais la version en
Français devrait être mise en ligne très prochainement.


Dear all, please find an article from the mag. “The Ecologist” written

IT deals with U mining in Niger, CRIIRAD and AGHIR IN MAN initial work
(2003) and the recent study (November 2009) performed by GREENPEACE
with scientific collaboration of the CRIIRAD laboratory.

The article may be partly downloaded on

You can download and use freely the CRIIRAD reports about Niger
(2010) and the GREENPEACE report (2010) at






Posted in