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Re: Radiation.

wracket wrote:
But it's not like we haven't made huge strides towards dealing with the waste. Between reactors recycling fuel to better vitrification techniques of the waste it does produce, there's no comparison between where we are now on this issue and where we were several decades ago (when environmental concerns were barely raised in any industry). So just because we don't have the perfect plan now doesn't necessarily mean that we won't.

And who knows, with technological advancements, maybe the entire scope of the nuclear reactor will change radically. Take, for example, the concept of thorium (as opposed to uranium or uranium/plutonium) reactors. This theoretical technology would produce NO WASTE, would be structurally incapable of a chain reaction meltdown (one could simply pull the plug if things went wrong and it would stay contained). Perhaps our focus should be more in this direction in the long run (over the next three to five generations of our species, assuming we make it that long), but we still have to deal with rising electricity consumption for the nearer term somehow.

Well I hope you're right. We've actually been creating nuclear waste since the 1940's. So 60-70 years or so. I suppose in the big scheme of things that's a short span of scientific history, but we've at least been aware of risks of nuclear power since the 1960's when power generation with nuclear plants started happening, with the first generation safeguards, it's not as though nobody thought there was any risk to this technology or the waste. And much greater public awareness in the 1970's, culminating with a spike after the 3 Mile Island accident.

Helen Caldicott may be past it, she getting elderly after all, she may be losing her edge and may come out with exaggerations and say things that are meant to make people wake up. But she's worked for decades on this issue, up against some incredibly powerful interests. She founded Physicians for Social Responsibility, wrote many anti-nuke books, etc etc. Words like "faux-science" are an easy label, but I do think there is plenty of evidence, beyond some loose statements of HC, to defend an anti-nuclear energy stance, and to come to a conclusion that the risk is too great.

Apr 27, 2011, 04:07


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