Safe Nuclear Power…The Illusion Faces Some Harsh Reality

To be fair, I have never been a big fan of nuclear power. I am not overly concerned about a meltdown in a plant in the United States…we did come close…but so far so good. And even with the failures in the Ukraine and Japan, I have a reasonable degree of confidence in plant operations (well maybe not as high as I used to). But the underlying problem of nuclear power has never, in my mind at least, been plant operation.

nuclear-wasteNuclear power is a classic example of our arrogance at developing a technology that generates waste, highly dangerous waste at that, without considering how we can and should safely handle that waste. I have written about this some time ago…and now we have a new twist.

As noted in the Times, there is a large concern that nuclear material can be stolen and used to create weapons. I am not too concerned about bombs…the technology is simply too hard to obtain…but the waste that we create is simply not being properly secured.

I applaud the efforts of the US and other countries that are trying to get a handle on this material. But really, do we need to keep supporting (with taxpayer subsidies) an industry that creates a material that can destroy areas for many years?

We can’t put the genie back in the bottle so to speak, but you would think that we learned our lesson. Let’s consider two options here as our lessons.

1. Don’t manufacture a product until we can demonstrate that it can be recycled or disposed of safely.
2. Instead of subsidizing old technology like fossil fuels and nuclear, let’s take all of that money and invest it in clean energy and conservation

Read the full article:
Nuclear Materials Remain Vulnerable to Theft, Despite U.S.-Led Effort
Limited free access; NY Times subscription may be required.

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