Saturday, November 5, 2011

Nuclear Power Concerns

No human endeavours get made perfectly. Proper engineering can minimize risks but never really eliminate them. Man made disasters happen through combination of human error, faulty equipment, and poor planning.

Disasters caused by forces of nature happen seemingly at random and engineers can plan for them but never actually divine all the details nor the upper limits of destructive forces.

Disasters with nuclear plants have the capability of rendering large swathes of our planet uninhabitable and inflect wind borne radiation upon the whole globe with resulting loss of human life, with children at greater risk.

Do we as a human race really need an iPhone upgrade every year?

[The recent events in Japan remind us that while the likelihood of a nuclear power plant accident is low, its potential consequences are grave. And an accident like Fukushima could happen here. An equipment malfunction, fire, human error, natural disaster or terrorist attack could—separately or in combination—lead to a nuclear crisis.

The U.S. will continue to obtain a significant portion of its electricity from nuclear power for many years to come, regardless of how rapidly energy efficiency measures and other sources of electricity are deployed.

Given this reality, the United States must take concrete steps now to address serious shortcomings in nuclear plant safety and security that have been evident for years. No technology can be made perfectly safe, but the United States can and must do more to guard against accidents as well as the threat of terrorist attacks on reactors and spent fuel pools.

The report outlines and explains 23 specific recommendations, listed below:....

Require reactor owners to develop and test emergency procedures for situations when no AC or DC power is available for an extended period.]

This first area of critical concern clearly concerns me, with an address with 2 nuclear power plants within about 120 miles, one right on the Gulf of Mexico and other smack dab on the Atlantic.

Hurricanes can bring down power grids for weeks.

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