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Old March 16th, 2011, 09:19 AM
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Default Re: Nuclear energy - safe?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlohaKine View Post
People just need to remember to not build certain things in poor locations. I would agree that the 9th ward in New Orleans shouldn't have a nuclear power plant or one sitting on or near a fault line.
I was living in San Luis Obispo, CA back in the '70's when the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant was approved. It sits about one mile from an active earthquake fault. Many "environmentalists" were upset by the siting of the plant because of safety issues. I was working for the City of San Luis Obispo at the time as an urban planner and joined the protests. Although the City was not involved in the permitting process and had no legislative interest, PG&E went to the City and demanded I be fired from my position. The City reprimanded me, but I was not fired. PG&E poo-poo'd the concerns, saying they knew how to build a nucular (sic) plant to meet all safety standards. And it was built and is still operating today. Here is a quote from Wikipedia:

Diablo Canyon is designed to withstand a 7.5 magnitude earthquake from four faults, including the nearby San Andreas and Hosgri faults.[1] Equipped with advanced seismic monitoring and safety systems, the plant is designed to shut down promptly in the event of significant ground motion.

Fortunately there has never been any significant seismic activity in the area in the intervening years to test the presumptions quoted above. But it is clear (by PG&E's own assertions) that this plant would not survive an earthquake of the magnitude in Japan. PG&E is a public utility that has to answer to stockholders that demand a return on their investment. This begs the question, what motivates PG&E, public safety or responsibility to their stockholders?

Clearly, safety issues, with respect to all kinds of risk, have not been a primary consideration when building nuclear power plants around the world. Until safety can be reasonably assured by technology or location, then nucular (sic) energy is higly suspect as a viable source of sustainable power.

Carbon 14 like petroleum is a limited natural resource. There is controversary with respect to how much is left in the earth. In fact, nucular (sic) energy is an old and outdated technology. It is time to devote significant research (with tax payer money) to developing alternative sources of energy. Until then, nucular (sic) energy is highly suspect as a viable source of sustainable power for the future.
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Last edited by matapule; March 16th, 2011 at 09:27 AM.
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