Thursday, January 20, 2011

Focusing on nuclear power

 

Although our region is fighting off-shore wind as a major renewable energy source and our local media presents little of the on-going news about regional issues with nuclear power, there’s much reason for concern. 

Nuclear power, which to many people may seem like a real solution to our energy needs and curbing greenhouse gases, is not benign or cheap.  Our media fails to focus on the real and present danger nuclear power presents.

One of the concerns, besides the how to store spend nuclear material, or possible terrorist attacks, or serious accidents, are the reluctance of the media to thoroughly investigate safety at our nuclear plants, and the reluctance by nuclear power plant personnel to be open with all that goes on with these power plants.  (Not to mention that the costs of building a new nuclear power plant often go wildly beyond their estimates.) 

We the public tend to think about nuclear power is that it has problems like any other power sources.  Drilling for gas and oil can contaminate our waters, wind turbines can kill birds, coal mines cave in, and on and on until it all burrs into a cloudy haze of mindless fears. 

But, nuclear power accidents are an (admittedly rare) occurrence that is a factor of danger far beyond a blade fall off a wind turbine.  Your property might look the same after a nearby nuclear accident, but you won’t be able to go back to it.  Learn more:   

West Valley's legacy: teachable moments for other nuclear cleanups | Innovation Trail "Unlike other nuclear failures like Chernobyl and Three Mile Island, West Valley Reprocessing Plant in New York never became a household name. But even though it was open for only six years in the late 1960s, the plant has polluted soil, air, and water - and may have sickened employees. Ever since then hundreds of workers have been decontaminating the property, and there's no end in sight for West Valley’s story. " (January 6, 2011) Innovation Trail

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