History shows again and again...

Would have beena great fiction story...if it was fiction
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ROU Killing Time
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History shows again and again...

Post by ROU Killing Time » Sun Mar 13, 2011 5:18 am

http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/asiapcf/0 ... tml?hpt=T1

I've wrestled with the conflicting evils of world energy production, been sympathetic to the arguments about clean nuclear energy, versus dirty coal and such, but I do have to ask just how do you build a nuclear reactor that is safe from an 8.9 earthquake?

I mean seriously, this is Godzilla all over again.
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Re: History shows again and again...

Post by strawman » Sun Mar 13, 2011 5:47 am

My hunch is that when this is all over, nuclear will still be ~1,000x safer than coal, based on relative numbers of lives lost in production.
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ROU Killing Time
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Re: History shows again and again...

Post by ROU Killing Time » Sun Mar 13, 2011 6:48 am

Here's hoping.
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Re: History shows again and again...

Post by FAIL:SAFE » Sun Mar 13, 2011 10:25 am

Energy production is a bit like contraseption- no method is 100% safe. But if you look at the numbers, there are a handfull of people ( less than 10) that have been contaminated- not killed, by radiation.

Meanwhile at least 10000 people in one town along lost their lives due to a tsunami wave caused by a naturally occuring earthquake.

The "nuclear expert" on BBC is saying the fission processes stopped two days ago and the fuel remains sealed in it containment structure.

As for Godzilla, the likelyhood is his arrival will be due to the earthquake, rather than the pressure explosion at the nuclear power plant.

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Algernon Sydney is Dead
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Re: History shows again and again...

Post by Algernon Sydney is Dead » Sun Mar 13, 2011 10:58 am

ROU Killing Time wrote:I do have to ask just how do you build a nuclear reactor that is safe from an 8.9 earthquake?
Actually that's pretty easy. Consider: I used to live and sleep within feet of the reactor core I helped operate. Built with 1950's technology, operated by kids with GED's, and in danger of being shot at if war broke out (and a few times when it didn't).

Even an 8.9 quake is nothing compared to a torpedo for inconveniencing reactor safety!

That 6 reactors had such problems in Japan, suggests that somebody was cutting corners when they built those plants, however many decades ago. Still, from the sound of it, they never lost primary containment and there is no serious risk of radiation-related injuries or illness. (On the other hand, Japanese authorities are notorious for "glossing over" the worst.)

Anywho, since the flea-infested, dope-smoking, ne'er-do-wells kiboshed clean energy in this country, our lads have managed to proof-of-concept "inherently safe" reactors. These are much smaller in size and could/should be mass produced. With these designs, a meltdown is physically impossible.

Since the 1950's, the Coal industry has killed thousands of people directly, and contributes to up to 30,000 deaths in the USA, alone. The oil and gas industry is only a little better. Both industries still cause thousands of crippling injuries per year, too.

In the USA, nuclear power has caused no non-military deaths.

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ROU Killing Time
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Re: History shows again and again...

Post by ROU Killing Time » Sun Mar 13, 2011 5:52 pm

I'm right with you on the coal, (Dammit, we're gonna set another earthquake off.)

As far as your last line goes, you left out the "knockonwood." ;-)
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Re: History shows again and again...

Post by Mr. Tweedy » Tue Mar 15, 2011 9:15 pm

These plants have been making power for 40 years, and, as of now, have killed 0 people. But radiation is freaky, man. Freaky!

Rule 48 of human nature: People's fear of a threat is more influenced by its novelty than by its likelihood of hurting them. If threat A has killed 1,000,000 people but it well-known and threat B has killed 2 people but is mysterious, people will be more afraid of B than A. It's much more common to die of alcohol poisoning than of radiation poisoning, but people freak out over radiation and seek out alcohol.
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ROU Killing Time
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Re: History shows again and again...

Post by ROU Killing Time » Tue Mar 15, 2011 9:38 pm

In much the same way that more people are terrified of flying than driving.

However, when you are in a 747 and the engines fail, it doesn't change the fact that you better have listened to your mother and put clean underwear on that morning...

I hope the "as of now" clause holds up. If things keep getting uglier, the problem is going to be around for a lot longer than the 40 years that they operated safely.
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