Tuesday, June 28, 2011

ABC, NBC both offer major videos on sudden concerns about domestic nuclear safety: floods, wildfires, tritium releases

ABC News on Monday June 27 reported on the possible effects of river floods on two Nebraska nuclear plants, especially Fort Calhoun, which is surrounded by water now. However now water has affected the backup power systems that would cool the core.

Jim Sciutto of ABC Nws then provided a report on the fact that 40% of Americans live within 50 miles of a nuclear power plant. FEMA insists that only those within 10 miles need evacuation plans, but in Japan’s Fukushima, 50 miles was necessary. The report also covered apparently unsafe or illegal levels of tritium (an isotope of hydrogen) on private property of homeowners near nuclear plants, such as one near Chicago.

On Tuesday NBC Nightly News reported on possible dangers to nuclear materials at Los Alamos, NM due to the huge 93-square-mile wildfire.  (It's funny, Michael Crichton used "Wildfire" as the name of a top secret government project in "The Andromeda Strain", a movie twice.)   The clip talks about a particular concern over plutonium storage on the grounds and the effect of a possible release. The "Manhattan Project" during WWII, resulting in the atomic bomb, was conducted here. Just imagine the effect of the evacuations on the local population. 

Back in New York City in 1978, an “Understanding” unit member named Barbara Charles wanted to mount a campaign to stop all nuclear power, and I opposed the idea of focusing so much on just one issue as a cause.  Many parts of Europe, especially France, have run nuclear power safely and efficiently for years. 

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