A lot of people think nuclear energy is safe, that it doesn’t produce any Co2. Whether or not nuclear energy contributes to global warming hardly summarizes the palpable danger of these reactors. Let’s take the two most famous melt-downs Fukushima and Chernobyl. The fact is both types of nuclear reactors that failed are still in wide use. In Russia, after the Chernobyl plant destroyed the region there are still 10 of these plants in use:
Saint Petersburg (4 RBMK-1000, one of which is offline for repair and may not return to operation), Smolensk (3 RBMK-1000) and Kursk (4 RBMK-1000).
Thank our dumb luck Fukushima and Chernobyl haven’t happened here (United States) yet. Thankfully, both are far away from America and our 104 reactors, but wait don’t we have 23 of the same reactors in the US? That’s right a full 22% of all the Nuclear energy in the US running on the same faulty design. Many of these plants are in major population centers and along fault lines. In fact, the Mark I and many other reactors were built in the 60’s and don’t even have computer read-outs. These puppies still run on dials with needles, just like your speedometer or odometer. Anyone ever seen a broken speedometer or odometer on an older automobile? I certainly have! What happens when an important needle gets stuck and nobody notices? Boom, sucks to be you or anyone else within hundreds of miles.
But wait Chernobyl happened when I was just 6 years old, surely the area is safe now? Not on your life or anyone’s life for the next few billion years. That’s right after 704 million years, hundreds of square miles surrounding Chernobyl will only be half as toxic as it was a month after the meltdown (based on the half-life of U-235, the type used at Chernobyl). How about these new wonderful (gag, choke, cough) Nuclear reactors that employ the much safer Plutonium (Pu-239) I’ve heard so much about? Well it has a half-life of only 24.1 thousand years, so maybe in a couple hundred thousand years you could visit your home town that once had a power plant, providing you didn’t die in the first couple of days. I don’t know maybe you were out of town at the time of the meltdown. So with that ultra-safe Plutonium, maybe 10,000 generations from now someone could visit where you once lived. Not that they would know you, know of you, or even be able to recognize that a toxic city buried by time once stood there.
We have 437 of these time bombs actively producing energy and toxic waste across the globe. Radioactive plant waste has to be stored indefinitely at great expense and risk to surrounding populations. Another 68 plants globally are under construction. What has our Enviro-Sham president done to put an end to Nuclear energy? Well he has funded the first two nuclear power plants in the United States in over 30 years. I didn’t vote for him and I can’t understand why people still vote for Republicans and Democrats. We all know their employer, big business. Mussolini and Hitler were funded by industry, a governmental style known as Fascism. If industry wants more Nuclear power plants, and President Obama is our current fascist leader it’s no wonder new plants are on their way.
I realize population density has a lot to do with the danger of Nuclear power plants and the United States does have a number of plants within 50 miles of major population centers. Sure we aren’t as densely populated as Japan which has 54 reactors and a population density of 873 people per square mile. Any reactor count greater than zero is a disaster waiting to happen. Here in the land of fascism we are only at 1/5th the risk with 104 reactors and a population density of 88.6 people per square mile. However, we pose the greatest nuclear energy risk to the planet with 24% of the world’s total active power plants. In whatever state you reside in please start a petition to decommission all your plants immediately. If there is even one plant in your home country, it needs to be closed immediately. Won’t you help? What is worth more today than the promise of a tomorrow? Please see if your home country is listed:
(graph taken from European Nuclear Society website)
If you are interested in learning more about Nuclear energy please read my other posts on it.