But Nuclear Power is Perfectly Safe….Isn’t It?

Where’s Chuck DeVore when you need him? Of course, he’s in Texas writing fiction about the Rick Perry miracle.  But close to home and across the Pacific, the ‘nuclear power is perfectly safe” argument continues to lose some luster.

First off in Japan, things are still bad at the damaged nuclear reactor in the Northern part of the nation.  Crooks and Liars has this post that spells out how bad it still is:

The temperature of the No. 2 reactor was 70.1 degrees Celsius (158 degrees Fahrenheit) as of 6 a.m. today, according to preliminary data, Akitsuka Kobayashi, a spokesman for the utility, said by phone. The reading fell from 72.2 degrees at 5 a.m. this morning, and is below the 93 degrees that’s used to define a cold shutdown, or safe state, of the reactor.

Since Feb. 1, temperatures at the bottom of the No. 2 reactor vessel have risen by more than 20 degrees Celsius, according to the company’s data. Tepco, as the utility is known, and the government announced that the Fukushima plant reached a cold shutdown on Dec. 16, nine months after the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami wrecked the nuclear station, and caused three reactors to meltdown and release radiation.

And in December, tons of radioactive water may have been released in the Pacific.

In all, as much as 220 tons of water may now have leaked from the facility, according to a report in the Asahi Shimbun newspaper that cited Tepco officials.

The newspaper says the water may have contained up to one million times as much radioactive strontium as the maximum safe level set by the government, and about 300 times as much radioactive cesium. Both are readily absorbed by living tissue and can greatly increase the risk of developing cancer

Avoid sushi from that part of the world for, oh I don’t know, forever…..

And closer to home, Senator Barbara Boxer has called for a saftey probe of the nucelar facility in nearby San Onofre over multiple reports of leaks.  Hat tip to OC Weekly’s Navel Gazing for this post.

U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-California) has sent a letter to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) seeking a comprehensive safety review of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS) in light of the recent leaks and mishaps at the plant. “I ask the NRC to thoroughly assess the conditions at the San Onofre plant to determine what further investigation and action is required at this time, and whether similar actions may be needed at other nuclear facilities,” reads Boxer’s letter to NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko.

Besides leaks in tubes that led to the recent shutdown of Unit 3, which may have prompted radiation to seap into the atmosphere, as well as the subsequent inspection and discovery of unusual wear to similar tubes at Unit 2, which was closed for maintenance, Boxer’s letter cited a SONGS worker falling into a pool of water laced with a small amount of radiation. It is feared the worker accidentally consumed some of that water, although he did not get sick.

The plant was evacuated in November due to a non-toxic leak.  I’m sure it was non-toxic.

The amount of energy produced by nuclear power isn’t sufficient in terms of storing the toxic waste that’s lethal for thousands of years.  But again, where’ Chuck DeVore to defend this?  All hat and no cattle in Texas…..

  3 comments for “But Nuclear Power is Perfectly Safe….Isn’t It?

  1. February 8, 2012 at 6:55 pm

    So, we’ve had three major accidents around the world in the past 30 years involving nuclear plants. One of those was in a country where safety has always taken a back seat to productivity so they don’t count. Safety at American plants has been an issue but we have the Feds to help stay on top of it. The only real issue is what to do with the toxic waste from spent fuel rods. When we can figure that problem out I am all for increasing our use of nuclear energy.

  2. February 8, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    Nuclear Power Needed to Reach Climate Goal

    Organizations such as the IEA (International Energy Agency) and the IAEO (International Atomic Energy Organization) expect an increasing share of atomic energy in the worldwide energy mix. The IEA, for example, considers nuclear power to be a key component of climate policies. The goal of limiting the warming of the atmosphere to 2° Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures would be jeopardized without nuclear power, the IEA fears.

    Planning for Economic Collapse via Insufficient Energy Production
    • Life span of a nuclear power plant: 40 years.
    • 90 percent of the 104 nuclear power plants in the US are already more than 20 years old and half have been operating for more than 30 years.
    • With a planning and construction time of 15 to 25 years for a new reactor (estimate by Prognos AG in 2008), it seems that America will not have enough Electrical Energy in less than 10 years.

    Average age of world’s 435 nuclear power plants is 25 years; 75% of Western Europe’s plants in last half of life
    By Michael Hennigan, Founder and Editor of Finfacts
    Dec 11, 2009 – 5:23:03 AM

    More at: http://larouchepac.com/nuclear

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