Watch Atomic Africa and many more documentaries!

  • Subscribe to our catalogue of 600+ documentaries
  • The first month for €1.49
  • No strings attached. Cancel online at anytime
  • We share the revenu directly with the documentary makers
Learn more about DocsOnline

Atomic Africa by Kolvenbach, Marcel

The African continent is rapidly developing itself economically. The only bottleneck in this process are readily available resources. Besides money these mainly consist of poor infrastructure and availability of energy, especially electricity. Economically booming countries like for example Uganda still have a lot to gain when a steady supply of power is provided. Nowadays in Uganda the power plants can only cater for roughly 30% of the countries demand and even new hydraulic power projects in the Nile will not solve this problem. Nuclear power therefor seems the most cost effective solution for most of the African nations including Uganda. Western companies such as the French Areva fiercely lobby for more power plants on the continent. But is Atomic Energy the best solution for unstable regimes? And what does Atomic Energy and the mining of uranium mean for the wellbeing and safety of the local population and the environment?

Social Interest

Ever since the first nuclear reactor was build in Africa in Congo in 1958 there have been safety concerns, cause within the whole process of the production of nuclear energy a lot of things can go wrong, willingly and unwillingly, with possible devastating consequences for people and environment. For instance in 2007 the head of the Congolese research institute was arrested for illegally selling nuclear fuel rods. Also in Niger the highway where the mined uranium is transported on runs through rebel territory associated with Al-Qaida. The war in neighbouring Mali makes this transport even more risky. Besides the risks of fuel rods ending up in the wrong hands the mining of uranium itself poses danger to people and environment as well. Legal and illegal mining operations destroy ecosystems and leave the miners with radiation poisoning .

Historical and Political Relevance

Nuclear power, the right to enrich uranium and develop the technology to exploit its energy, has always been a difficult point in international politics. In the Cold War the threat mainly came from the war talk and power displays of archenemies the United States and the Soviet Union which both had a gigantic nuclear arsenal. As the cold war ended the threat of a nuclear war declined. However the nuclear disaster in a power plant in Chernobyl a few years earlier proved that the benefits of nuclear power also pose a big potential threat in case of incidents. However, this incident did not stop more countries from starting a nuclear program with a wide range of experiments While in the last decade the interest of the West in Nuclear power seems to decline some new players on the nuclear market, with questionable regimes like Iran and North Korea , are causing much international debate about the right to develop nuclear power. The rapidly developing African continent is in serious need of energy and has always been rich in raw resources to produce energy and is now slowly developing the knowledge to exploit them. The African continent may well be on the verge of a nuclear revolution so the political discussion about the right to use nuclear energy is more relevant than ever. Because not only questionable regimes can pose a potential threat, also war and especially terrorism are extremely dangerous, since it takes a single rocket fired by a single person to blow up a nuclear power plant.

Director
Kolvenbach, Marcel
Copyright Holder
Java Films SARL
Duration
52 min.
Year of release
2013
Language
English

More Documentaries

  • 59 min.

    The cult of a suicide bomber II

    Toolis, Kevin, 2008

    In this vital film by director Kevin Toolis, CIA veteran and author Robert Baer discovers how the phenomenon of suicide bombing has spread and changed the role of women in the Middle East, and crucially tells us how this threat can be defeated.

    Watch documentary
  • 48 min.

    The cult of a Suicide Bomber III

    Toolis, Kevin, 2007

    As suicide bombers become increasingly active in Western countries and have a huge impact on normal day life such as the 7/7 London subway bombings, new questions and concerns rise.

    Watch documentary
  • 46 min.

    Black power

    Curtis, Adam, 1992

    'Black Power' revolves around post-colonial Ghana and President 'Kwame Nkrumah's' efforts to create a modern, industrial state. The construction of a dam (the Volta River Project) was supposed to contribute to that goal.

    Watch documentary
  • 59 min.

    The Power of Nightmares Part I

    Curtis, Adam, 2005

    This is part I of the award winning BBC series. The series questions whether we should be worried about the threat from organised terrorism or is it simply a phantom menace being used to stop society from falling apart?

    Watch documentary
  • 59 min.

    The Power of Nightmares Part II

    Curtis, Adam, 2005

    This is part II of the award winning BBC series. It questions whether we should be worried about the threat from organised terrorism or is it simply a phantom menace being used to stop society from falling apart?

    Watch documentary
  • 46 min.

    A is for atom

    Curtis, Adam, 1992

    The concluding part of the BBC television documentary series Pandora's Box, A is for atom elucidates on the history of nuclear power in the US, Great Britain and the Soviet Union.

    Watch documentary
  • 53 min.

    Ahmed Shah Massoud

    Malhotra, Iqbal, 2005

    This informative documentary is about the life and times of the late Commander Ahmad Shah Massoud, the famous Afghan leader. He was assassinated by two Tunisian assassins on September 9, 2001.

    Watch documentary
  • 52 min.

    Standing Army

    Parenti, Enrico & Fazi, Thomas, 2010

    During the Second World War America made a start establishing what would later be known as the Military-Industrial Complex, an intricate relation between government legislation, weapons industry and economy.

    Watch documentary
Close Login