Indian Energy Experts Baffled by Green Hostility to Nuclear Power

Susquehanna steam electric nuclear power station

Susquehanna steam electric nuclear power station

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

The Hindu reports on a fascinating top level debate occurring at a conference in India, between politicians and energy experts. The energy experts are struggling to understand why nuclear power is not the favoured Western option for reducing CO2 emissions.

… Pointing out that countries such as Germany, France, Switzerland and Austria were either committed to closing down nuclear plants or opposing nuclear renaissance, he [Governor P. Sathasivam] stressed the need to formulate a new approach between nuclear enthusiasts and opponents. A former Ambassador and governor for India at the International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Mr. Sreenivasan said India, China, and Russia were the only countries enthusiastic about nuclear power today.

Striking a different stand, Ashok Chauhan, Director (Technical), Nuclear Power Corporation of India, said the increase in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions posed a greater threat to the world than nuclear energy. “In fact, nuclear energy offers a solution to the threat posed by greenhouse gases that are responsible for climate change and rise in sea level.”

Mr. Sreenivasan, who chaired the session, pointed out that the Paris climate change summit had not endorsed nuclear energy as a solution to the problem caused by GHG emissions.

Read more:

I suspect it won’t take the Indian energy experts long to conclude that Western opposition to nuclear power is irrational, which will likely lead them to question the legitimacy of other things Western “experts” have told them.

Former NASA GIS director James Hansen, and a handful of other leading climate alarmists, have repeatedly stated, that the only plausible means of reducing CO2 emissions, is a vast expansion of nuclear capacity.

But as the Indian energy experts will quickly discover, pointing out the bleeding obvious to green fanatics rapidly leads to bullying and name calling – even if you are James Hansen.

363 thoughts on “Indian Energy Experts Baffled by Green Hostility to Nuclear Power

  1. Because the Green movement are anarchist they must destroy the World to then rebuild it in their image. Agenda 21 is alive and well.

    • Well just look at all that smoke coming out of those two monster chimneys, and make up your own mind !!
      Are those things supposed to be circular elliptic hyperboloids of one sheet ??

      • George, no doubt Gary is right, but THIS reader loved it. lololol. Great writing. I can “hear” old Grampa Greener shouting that as he bangs his cane on the front porch for emphasis.

      • I think those are cooling towers, emitting water vapor. Photos like that are always used to scare people.

      • I think other folk’s need for some semblance of a sense of humor exceeds my need to expand my texting vocabulary.
        So what is a sarc tag ??
        All of my Hanes underwear is completely tagless. One of the great merchandising discoveries of the 20/21st centuries.
        No more am I under the threat of arrest for cutting the tags off my unmenchionables.

      • Dang, I give up. I’ve enlarged that image as much as I can and I’ve looked at every portion of it and I can not find any “monster chimneys” with smoke coming out of them.
        Are we all looking at the same photo?

      • hyperboloids … Darn that is twice today I’ve had to look words up while reading this site! I learn more and expand my vocabulary (or refresh it in this case, I’m old and forgetting my high school math).
        A sarc tag is something like “/sarc” or “/s” for the shorthand version. None of us took it literally but some warmunists have been know to visit this site and might add you to their mailing list without it.
        [The mods want to know if a hyperboloid is more (or less) dangerous than a lowboloid, compared to, for example, the average speed and position of the typical hemorrhoid? .mod]

      • We all know that water vapour is a much more potent greenhouse gas than CO2, so maybe they included the image to remind us of that. \sarc

      • Mods @ TRM 3:43
        George seems to have seen a smoking hemorrhoid, or has one – seems a bit grumpy and looking at his Hanes.
        Now that we’ve lowered the level … moving on.

      • [george e smith] Are those things supposed to be circular elliptic hyperboloids of one sheet ??
        All of my Hanes underwear is completely tagless. One of the great merchandising discoveries of the 20/21st centuries. No more am I under the threat of arrest for cutting the tags off my unmenchionables.

        Ellipse of bliss, converge, O lips divine!
        the product o four scalars is defines!
        Cyberiad draws nigh, and the skew mind
        Cuts capers like a happy haversine.

        ~Stanislaw Lem
        Two most sublime achievements of the human race are, the harnessing of nuclear energy… and our ability to mention unmentionables.

      • “””””…..
        January 7, 2016 at 3:43 pm
        hyperboloids … Darn that is twice today I’ve had to look words. …..”””””
        TRM, In a Cartesian ( x, y, z ) co-ordinate system, the general second order equation would be:
        ax^2+by^2+cz^2+dxy+eyz+fzx+gx+hy+iz+j = 0
        That describes a host of three dimensional surfaces, which have a variety of two dimensional plane cross sections, all of which are conic sections.
        For example leaving out most of the terms, one could have: ax^2+hy = 0 which would be a parabola. ax^2+by^2+j = 0 gives an ellipse, and so on.
        For those cooling towers, we might take height as the z axis. Then x,y plane sections would be ellipses, and in this case actually circles. Any plane containing the z axis has a hyperbola as a cross section (usually). If you took that hyperbola and rotated it about any axis that lies in the z = 0, xy plane You would get two hyperboloidal surfaces, facing away fro m each other, that are mirror images of each other.
        So you would have two “sheets” as they are called, and that particular object, would be a circular hyperboloid of two sheets. Now the circular section could be generalized into an ellipse, so it would become an elliptic hyperboloid of two sheets.
        The cooling tower only has one sheet, so it is an elliptic hyperboloid of one sheet, with the ellipse being made into a circle.
        If you take two equal sized hula hoops, and you connect them together with a host of equal length strings, so one hoop can hang from the other (horizontal hoops), you get a cylinder looking object, which actually is a very special limit case of a circular hyperboloid of one sheet.
        Now if you rotate one of the hoops relative to the other, you end up with the common basket trash can shape, which is like our cooling tower. So you can actually draw a bunch of perfectly straight lines that lie twisted on the surface of that hyperboloidal shape. If you continue to twist the hoops relative to each other; so long as the strings are longer than the diagonal of the hula hoop, you will find after a 180 degree twist, that all the strings now meet at a point ion the z axis, and the hyperboloid has now degenerated into a perfect cone.
        So both a circular cylinder, and a circular cone, are just special limit cases of a circular elliptic hyperboloid of one sheet.
        The weirdest of all of those general second order surfaces, actually has opposite sign curvatures for different cross sections, and the sections are a mix of hyperbolas and parabolas.
        The most common implementation of such a shape is an ordinary horse saddle.
        Surfaces that switch sign of the curvature as you rotate around one of the axes, will have at least one direction where the sign switches from positive to negative curvature, so it must go through zero curvature, and be a straight line in that direction, at that point. Saddles are called “anticlastic” surfaces. surfaces that always have the center of curvature on only one side of the surface, are called “synclastic” surfaces.
        I’ll leave it to you to figure out which (a) through (j) need to be non zero to get a saddle surface.

    • No, you have it exactly backwards. An anarchist wants NO LAWS (and thus no one controls them). I communist or dictator wants complete control…that’s where the Greens are parked.
      I don’t get hung up on Left/Right, Liberal/Conservative, etc. I look at the number of laws required. An Anarchist is at the end of the scale where 0 laws would be…that is, personal freedom is the utmost utopia, all others be damned. (Murder might even be OK in this world!)
      The Communists and the Dictators want complete control over all individuals…for the greater good, of course.

      • “An Anarchist is at the end of the scale where 0 laws would be…that is, personal freedom is the utmost utopia, all others be damned.”
        And devil take the hindmost.

      • Completely agree! See my post of 1:24pm – same idea, but it seems few here understand it.

      • If there are no laws, how can they prevent people from doing the things they hate, like making money and burning fossil fuels?
        Anarchists have no idea what the hell they want…they just like being world class a-holes, near as I can discern.

      • Anarchy sounds good in theory and in a few agit-prop novels; but in practice it always goes very badly, since something always emerges to fill the vacuum. The two best examples of Anarchy in existence today are Libya and most of Syria, and that’s enough said. That’s what anarchy always turns into, whenever it pops up.
        Early feudalism was basically anarchy, where whoever was the local strong man gathered up a few hundred tough guys who had nothing to do and used them to make everyone call him “Lord”, and agree that he owned all of their stuff. There’s always some guy or some group that is waiting to seize power the instant he gets the chance.

      • Iceland had an effective form of anarchy for a bit over 100 years.
        On the flip side, all forms of govt tend towards totalitarianism over time.

      • @ Bruckner8
        An anarchist doesn’t want/need RULERS not “no laws”.
        Every society needs laws , the difference is how much and what laws.
        Also anarchism is not the same as chaos , as some comment supposes.
        Basically , they don’t want a ruling class , which will get corrupt over time
        and seize power for their own and their cronies benefit instead of
        the people they are supposed to represent. Obvious examples are dictatorships ,
        our Western ‘democracies’ are ‘milder’ examples.where one is allowed to choose their dictators
        for the next couple of years and then shut up and do as you’re told because hey , you chose us
        to rule over you remember. (There is a huge difference between the theory and practise we see today.)
        The people themselves should make the laws and decide how much tax they pay and what to
        use it for , then appoint persons for a limited time to implement those decisions.
        Disadvantage of anarchism is that it only works on a small scale and is only possible if
        the people are spiritually mature enough.
        The same could be said about a democracy , which can only properly function if you have
        well informed voters and no mass manipulation by the people who are (really) in control.
        It’s not “0 laws” and “personal freedom is the utmost utopia, all others be damned. (Murder might even be OK in this world!)” it’s more ,do as much as you like while considering other persons freedom and causing no harm (or at least as little as possible) to others and your environment.
        (that’s where the spiritually mature bit comes in)
        So murder is definitely NOT ok ( especially not on the grand scale even our Western ‘democracies’ engage in ,which we call war)
        “The Communists and the Dictators want complete control over all individuals…for the greater good, of course.”, the same can be said about Western democracies , only the bars of the cage you’re in are (until now) less obvious/visible.

      • Thinkaboutit: “no rulers” and “no laws” are functionally equivalent, cuz if you don’t have a ruling class (er, law enforcement), then you don’t have/need laws. You’re describing a system where “can’t we all just get along?” reigns supreme, where everyone has shared values and expectations. I can see where that wouldn’t need laws, but it actually does…they’re just not written down…they’re built into the value system, and violators *are* smacked down by elders, if not “official rulers.” That’s a very communal system, and as you said, only works in small numbers.
        OK, back to the real world, where written laws are a necessity. But how many? Every single law is a limit on freedom.

      • Thinkaboutit January 7, 2016 at 3:59 pm said
        “The people themselves should make the laws and decide how much tax they pay and what to
        use it for , then appoint persons for a limited time to implement those decisions.”
        It is not surprising that “the people, themselves” are not inclined, on the whole, to spend their lives discussing the minute details of laws.
        For this reason, “the people” delegate enthusiastic members of their society to, not only implement, but also write and enact the laws that might be deemed necessary. Few of us are really happy with the results but it’s only when a lot of us get pissed off, that the situation descends into anarchy.
        “Anarchism”, on the other hand, is but a semantic delusion; a childish attempt to sound grown-up.

      • Thinkaboutit January 7, 2016 at 3:59 pm
        You want to read MacDonough’s Song by Rudyard Kipling before enshrining what “the people” want. You also want to keep in mind why the US Constitution has a Bill of Rights appended. It isn’t to protect “the people.” “The people” by and large are as dictatorial and rabid as any individual dictator in history. Democracy is no cure-all for the problems of the planet. All you need is two groups of humourless egotists (e.g. the Tea Party and Leftists) who both “know” what’s right and disagree with each other and you have a problem. We have loads of small minded, special interests, all in conflict. Every single one claims that they “have rights” over the behaviour of others.

      • Duster,
        The Bill of Rights was indeed amended to the Constitution to protect the rights of the people and states from the possible (now real) excesses of a too powerful central regime. All the amendments mention the people, individual persons, property owners, the accused or convicted. Its literal last words are “the people”:
        Amendment I: Freedom of Speech, Press, Religion and Petition
        Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
        Amendment II: Right to keep and bear arms
        A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
        Amendment III: Conditions for quarters of soldiers
        No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
        Amendment IV: Right of search and seizure regulated
        The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
        Amendment V: Provisons concerning prosecution
        No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.
        Amendment VI: Right to a speedy trial, witnesses, etc.
        In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
        Amendment VII: Right to a trial by jury
        In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
        Amendment VIII: Excessive bail, cruel punishment
        Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
        Amendment IX: Rule of construction of Constitution
        The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
        Amendment X: Rights of the States under Constitution
        The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
        The Founders did in fact fear mob rule, and tried to prevent it through various means in the Constitution, but the Bill of Rights was added at the insistence of the Anti-Federalists to ensure against tyrannical abuses of power against the people by the new national regime.

      • Gloateus is correct in regards to fascism vs. socialism. Both are just variations of statism and belong next to each other on any political spectrum. They both demand full state control of the people and economy, the differences are just in style. Socialists recommend state ownership of the means of production, fascists concede private ownership of economic factors but full state control of those, nonetheless.
        It is a long-term fiction that fascism is a ‘right-wing’ philosophy foisted by the left since WWII. The only reason the fascists and communists of the time were at each other’s throats is because they each were afraid of the other muscling in on their racket; but ultimately it was the same racket.

    • They are not anarchists; they may romantically think themselves as such, but they are fascists.

      • I suppose in an Anarchist’s world; what was yours is now mine. Kind of a reverse socialism.

      • MarkW :
        As usual, you have confused your terms.
        As everybody knows, fascism and socialism are near opposite ends of the political spectrum but fascists like to pretend otherwise.
        Robert of Ottawa correctly wrote

        They are not anarchists; they may romantically think themselves as such, but they are fascists.

        and you attempted to distort his accurate comment by writing

        In other words, they are run of the mill socialists.

        Substitute ‘libertarians’ for “socialists” and you would be right.

      • I see that Richard is still on that “everybody knows” kick. Despite the fact that he’s been proven wrong over and over and over again.
        Just because everyone in the faculty lounge agrees with you, doesn’t make you right.

      • Richard,
        You have that backwards. Fascism and socialism are both versions of the same disease, ie statism.
        How on earth could libertarianism and fascism be the same thing? They are polar opposites. Same for socialism. Libertarianism puts its faith in free citizens. Fascism and socialism glorify the state over the liberties of the people, making them subjects.
        Anarchy means without a leader. It is indeed possible to have laws without a leader. Many polities throughout human history have done so. To mention but one example, consider Judges, 18:1, “In those days there was no king in Israel:”. Many groups, such as American Indians, would appoint a war leader as needed, but get along fine under their customary laws and traditions the rest of the time. Iceland had its annual Alþingi without a leader in between meetings.
        Enforcement of contracts and apprehending outlaws don’t require specialists until breaches of the law become too numerous for private individuals and posses to handle.
        Feudalism wasn’t anarchy. In theory and usually in practice, local lords (barons) held their fiefs from higher nobles (counts or earls and dukes), who in turn owed service and allegiance to the king. There were however often baronial revolts and civil wars, as during the Anarchy in England, when some lords refused to accept a queen and during the rebellion leading up to Magna Carta.

      • “”””…..
        Gloateus Maximus
        January 8, 2016 at 6:19 am
        You have that backwards. Fascism and socialism are both versions of the same disease, ie statism. …..”””””
        I actually favor the Feudal system, as the perfect form of Government.
        If I was making the rules, I would abolish ALL elective governing bodies below the County, or Shire, or whatever you want to call it.
        And I would have that County governed by a board of supervisors or whatever you want to call them; say a total of 13 persons for example.
        And all citizens of that County would get to vote for their selection of those 13 persons, they want on the county board of supervisors, all 13 of them.
        So the supervisors represent the county, and not any local district, or subdivision of the county.
        Those 13 persons, would be the ONLY persons in the entire known universe, and all those other parallel multiverses, who had the authority to tax me, and write laws (every word of those laws).
        Naturally, they would make laws and tax me, to provide the necessary common county public services.
        Maybe once a month or so, one of my County supervisors, would be designated to go to Sacramento, or you name it, to meet with the county supervisors of Orange County and Kern County and all the other counties in our State.
        Those State meetings would decide among themselves how much money each county would be assessed to provide for common state public necessities like roads between Santa Clara County, and Kern County, and the others. So I have NO dealings of any kind with the State Government, nor they with me.
        If my County Government doesn’t get a fair deal at the State level, my fellow County citizens and I will vote their a***** out and put in someone who can.
        Maybe every six months, or maybe each quarter, My State government, will pick one of their number to go to Washington to meet with the other 56 State representatives, to decide on how much of the USA National Defense budget, the State of California deserves to pay.
        I would have no dealings at all with the Federal Government, nor they with me.
        And the United Nations could just go and pound sand as far as I am concerned.
        All citizens should be able to directly vote into or out of office ANY person, who has any authority to tax them for anything.
        Local governments and citizens (county) should take care of local problems first.
        So bottoms up representation and taxation. Not this Obamination, where an incompetent nincompoop in Washington DC takes everybody’s money from them, and then parcels it out to whomever they personally favor.
        And the sooner we get rid of ALL bureaus, and all bureaucrats, the better.
        Every word of every law or statute or regulation should be written only by duly elected members of the appropriate level of government. NO non elected person should be able to write so much as one word of any law or regulation.
        Well I’m not holding my breath.

      • George,
        My county (population about 76,000; area c. 3200 sq mi) has three commissioners, which IMO are plenty. The sheriff is also elected, plus some judges.
        Why have a panel of 13 elected officials make decisions about roads? Roads can be built and maintained in the same way that irrigation districts work. Let those who want the roads bond themselves to construct them and recoup the costs with tolls. For connections to roads outside the district, some volunteer coordination and professional advice might be needed, but that hardly justifies a large county, state and federal bureaucracy.
        That government which governs least, governs best. Freedom lives where the government fears the people; tyranny reins were the people fear the government.

    • Most of the “problems” in Nature are political motivated to promote a political Agenda. The aim is to deny Western World available and cheap energy.

  2. Western Environmentalists oppose nuclear energy for the same reason they oppose all forms of effective industrial-scale energy production, and indeed oppose industry as such, because they oppose capitalism, and at root they oppose human life. For a detailed look into environmentalists’ anti-human philosophy, from which all their other policies flow, I highly recommend the book, “Merchants of Despair” by Dr. Robert Zubrin. While not directly addressing global warming or nuclear power, it is an essential resource for understanding the environmentalist philosophy.

    • After Three Mile Island some starry-eyed zombies protested around Navy facilities near Seattle. Navy yard workers started sporting “More Nukes, Less Kooks” which I found rather droll.

    • And they are too mixed up (or possibly just too stoned) mentally to realize that, by being against everything, they are in effect voting for the status quo.

      • Well with some reservations I am in favor of utilizing the energy that powers the sun.
        We humanoids have been doing that now for thousands of years, and in its modern form it is totally controllable. My reservations relate to suitable siting, and minimization of environmental disruption.
        Day and night, the solar energy source is instantly adjustable for load factor, or it can be shut down completely. Turn on and turn off times are modest, and quite transparent to the end user.
        Unfortunately a lot of places on earth are quite unsuitable for solar energy siting, and environmentalists are not in favor of it anywhere.
        It has an added side benefit, in that instead of wasting water to further waste heat energy, the direct sun source energy can be used to preserve water supplies for use elsewhere.
        No silly ! I didn’t say thermo-nuclear fusion. I mean the gravity suck that powers the sun automatically.
        I have a particular soft spot for the Grand Coulee Gravitational Energy reactor myself, and also the Bonneville one on the Columbia River in Oregon.
        Well there’s Boulder Dam as well I guess.
        You can actually crank on just a thimble full of extra gravitational energy if the load varies a tiny amount.
        But they should be sited off to the side of water ways, rather than smack in the middle of them.
        Fishes gotta swim you know, not fly.

    • I like to call them Eco-Luddites.
      Modern society is unnatural, and therefore scientific or technical progress that facilitates the prosperity of modern society is necessarily evil.
      It applies to Nuclear power, GMOs, animal research, fracking, etc. They are anti-science and anti-progress at the core. They once called Chlorine the Devil’s element, even though cleanliness has contributed more to human health and longevity than all other advances combined.

      • Thanks KTM
        I get what you are saying but I’d throw in “responsible use” into your pov.
        I once used Cl on a nasty, not to go away “thingie” on a knuckle. I went full strength and put it on a bandage.
        Well it got the “thingie” but didnt stop there … sooooo … lesson learned. Use dilute Cl. 🙂

  3. “The Merchants of Despair” by Robert Zubrin makes it clear why the greens oppose Nuclear Power (and Hydro Power). It has nothing to do with being green.

  4. As I recall, China’s plans as of a few years ago was for 500 nuclear plants by mid century, 1600 by the turn of the century. Greenies love wind and especially solar , because it seems so benign, irregardless of the millions of cases of skin cancer..

      • So what?
        It is not collected by lying in the sun.
        Besides, it is filtered by the bulk of the sun and the atmosphere of the Earth.
        It may start is nuclear radiation, but (virtually) none of what is emitted by the nuclear reactions in the sun’s core reaches us here.
        The spectrum emitted by the sun would be unchanged if it was heated by some other source in the interior.

      • “””””…..
        January 7, 2016 at 12:18 pm
        Sunlight is nuclear radiation. …..””””
        No it is not. The “light” part of it is all in your head for starters; but the radiation part of it is mostly atomic; virtually none of it that we use on earth comes from the nucleus.
        Quickly now, where is your closest gamma ray power plant to your house ??
        From its radiation spectrum, we can deduce that most of the sun radiation that we get is simply thermal radiation due to acceleration of electric charges.

  5. Reasons:
    1. Ignorance (of many voters about the safety of spent fuel storage) fueling irrational fears.
    2. Ignorance promoted by the fear-mongering of other power generator industries using the irrationality of the anti-nukes to coerce Congress into anti-consumer, artificial, market restraints on nuclear power to prevent free market competition.
    3. “Enemies within” our country, e.g., in the U.S., Obama and Ayers, et. al., who would like nothing more than to see the U.S. economy, thus, the U.S., fail.
    As Dickens wrote in A Christmas Carol, while Want is a threat, Ignorance is the most dangerous to a free society.
    Excellent choice of topic, Mr. Worrall — nuclear power, now, is the KEY to freedom!

    • Ignorance is NOT a disease; we are ALL born with it.
      It is stupidity that has to be taught; and these days, it is taught in the public schools starting in pre-kindergarten.
      But I get your drift Janice.

      • Janice and George;
        But for “Congress” read “many National Governments” and for “U.S. economy” read “World economy”.

      • I’m glad you get me, George, but, where did I say ignorance was a disease? Your all-caps “NOT” implies that I did. It is simply “without knowledge” (to make myself more clear).
        Happy commenting O Top 5 Commenter! 🙂
        (belated) Congratulations!

      • “””””…… I’m glad you get me, George, but, where did I say ignorance was a disease? …..””””
        Now where did I say that you said ignorance was a disease ?
        I usually don’t say somebody said something, unless they specifically did say something.
        It’s like Willis says. Quote me my words where you disagree with me. Or don’t go and disagree with me about something I didn’t ever say or claim to agree with.
        Janice, I tend to use caps (sparingly) for accentuation; not confrontation. Some folks use Italics; some embolden, and some underline. My laptop has eight CPUs but no italics key, or bold key. It has a caps key which makes caps, and an alt key which makes nothing, as does the ctrl key.
        esc does nothing; mebbe that’s the excuse me key. So I capitulate for accent.
        At my sending end, it doesn’t sound any louder than uncaps.
        And my software is using pretty much all of those eight CPUs most of the time, so I only get the dregs left over for WUWT. Yes it’s a number cruncher.
        [The mods recommend the following be added to your control key:
        Ctrl + C = Copy to the buffer
        Ctrl + V = Paste (from the buffer)
        Ctrl + X = Cut (into the buffer)
        Ctrl + Z = Undo (what I just did)
        Ctrl + Y = ReDo (what I just did)
        Ctrl + – = Zoom (the current window) out
        Ctrl + + = Zoom (the current window) in.
        Ctrl + B = Format (what is selected) Bold
        Ctrl + I = Format (what is selected) Italic
        Oddly, Ctrl + N creates (1) a new screen, (2) a new message, (3) a new spreadsheet, (4) a new word document .mod
        But, you’re right. Ctrl + M doesn’t do anything to Mike at all.
        So, obviously, we need to see what Ctrl + J does to Janice. ]

    • I just want to make a slight correction, Janice. The commonly used term “SPENT fuel” is not much better than the incorrect term “waste fuel” The irradiated fuel is neither “spent” nor “waste”. It is merely fuel which carries a large burden of fission fragments which are neutron absorbents. Neutron economy is what makes reactors fission, so when fuel becomes more of a neutron scavenger than emitter – the fuel is changed out.
      Irradiated fuel may be reprocessed, removing the fission fragments from the fissile fuel. It may also be used as fuel in reactors of a different type (higher neutron flux). Definitely not something we should throw away… unless recoverable. GK

      • Well, since your term for “spent fuel” goes on into a second paragraph, while it may be a more scientifically accurate term, it is less useful in conversation. Wouldn’t you agree? Maybe you have a two or three word string as a replacement suggestion? FFIF (Fission Fuel with Irradiated Fragments)? For the purposes of use in a current reactor used to generate electricity, it is spent, “spent fuel” seems perfectly adequate to me. But I’m not a nuclear scientist. 🙂 To the main topic, nuclear is an outstanding energy source, and I fully support proper development of nuclear derived grid power.
        {FFFFFFF. Future Fortuitously Fertile Formerly Fissioned Fissile Fuel? .mod]

      • Thank you, G. Karst, for the education. While I did realize that “spent” is not a completely descriptive term for those rods, I thought (mistakenly, I guess!) I was using what is sort of an industry “term of art.” I’ve read about “spent fuel cannisters” for instance. I appreciate your taking the time to let me (and the rest of us) know!

        • maybe they’ll be a spinoff
          WUWTNukePower ?
          WUWTRad ?
          WUWTThoriumPower ?
          I’m pretty sure the spin machine is starting to gin up.
          First real press I got was about 2 years ago thru a limited investor thing.
          Got it again 6 months ago in a less limited recommendation.
          Today I saw it in the NY Post.
          Fertile ground for half truths, distortion and quality counter ideas like WUWT.

      • Jim A. – The correct term is “irradiated fuel” but the nomenclature is not as important as the reasons or concepts as to the why of it’s name. Look inward for more answers. GK

    • With nuclear you can’t have feed-in-tariffs, yieldcos, carbon trading. Much money to be made by setting up/making new financial instruments and markets.
      Look at the billionaire financial people that are backing climate change.

  6. The Greens are afraid that nuclear power would work, and prevent their minimal impact ideal. I remember an anti-nuclear activist making the statement that unlimited power would be like “giving an idiot child a machine gun”. Besides, panic always sell to a certain market.

    • Yes, indeed, the anti-materialist philosophy (just because…. they cannot give you anything but that to validate it — and that is okay… if they want to live their lives that way; it’s when they try to impose their religion/philosophy on the rest of us that I say: No.) is behind some of the anti-nuclear protesting.
      Good point!
      And, apparently missed by this great-minds-think-alike poster, here:
      Thus, I link to her comment, for this is where, in a “reply” to Tom Halla, it would be best placed.
      Why in the world did I bother?? In the hopes that it might encourage us all to READ ALL THE COMMENTS BEFORE COMMENTING.
      Meh. I changed my mind as I wrote that. So WHAT! LOL — if it’s a great idea, it bears repeating… .
      The efficiency drive in me just took over…. I’m back on course for live-and-let-live, now.

  7. I suspect it won’t take the Indian energy experts long to conclude that Western opposition to nuclear power is irrational, which will likely lead them to question the legitimacy of other things Western “experts” have told them.

    They may QUESTION the hypocrisy in critical thinking, but many things involving humans don’t require the rigid application of unbiased thinking. Knowing the difference often separates the winners and losers in a battle. Risk management consistently fails to accept that the risk one chooses is typically seen as less than the risk that is put upon them, despite the realities of that risk. Fraudsters prey on this concept often. India is no stranger to this game.
    Trump up fake risk via CAGW.
    Demonize fossils.
    Wallow around executing inefficient green energy.
    Corner your people into a box of your own making.
    Set up your elite as early investors in next gen nuke.
    Sell them the “new” solution at a wild profit.
    Ah, the human condition.

  8. If the money going to WORTHLESS “Hot Fusion Research” and the wasted “Climate Change” (AKA Gorebull warming before Saul Alinsky-ising it..) were used to build Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear plants, there would be another hundred on line in less than 15 years. Because of capacity factor, the nuclear % of electric (which is itself, 1/3 of our total energy use) would jump to about 75%. In 25 years it could be < 100%
    When we are all called before the GREAT JUDGE…for this reason alone, I hope there is a Heaven and a Hell. Although I want my hell COLD for the benefit of the AWG's and Green fearmongers who shall reside there.

  9. While there is some unreasonable opposition to nuclear power, I think the issues here are quite different.
    The plants need considerable space and cooling water, which inevitably comes at the expense of the local community. Rampant corruption ensures the locals see little or nothing of any proposed compensation, even if that was actually paid out. So the plant is all downside economically as well as socially, because of the nuclear fears.
    Opposition to nuclear is consequently quite rational and will continue until nuclear plants become desirable neighbors to have. That has been achieved in parts of Japan, where sea walls built to protect nuclear installations sheltered their local communities from the tidal wave that elsewhere destroyed the unprotected plant at Fukushima.

    • Opposition to nuclear is consequently quite rational and will continue until nuclear plants become desirable neighbors to have

      NIMBY is overcome when you make it worth something to the individual.

    • You have got to be talking about somewhere other than the United States of America, etudiant. As if… we can’t find places to put nuclear power plants that have enough space and cooling water without overly burdening the local population. AS IF. As to the U.S., your assertions are inaccurate, based on false premises.
      The relatively low-cost POWER generated is a GREAT BENEFIT to the local community.

    • etudiant, educate yourself from better sources than you seem to do. Lazy learning catches you in the net of lefty, keep-em-ignorant ‘knowledge’ bytes. You obviously don’t know that vast swathes of land are required for modest and halting output of energy from wind and solar.
      The world’s largest solar array is in Arizona, the Agua Caliente station at Yuma. It is 290megawatts and covers 10 km^2 and Arizona is one of the optimum locations for such a plant. If it were in New York, this output would require at least 4 times as much land. The world’s largest coal fired plants are over 5000megawatts and the world’s largest nuclear is the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa in Japan at 8,200megawatts. If this latter one were replaced by solar, it would require ~300 km^2.
      The 845MW Shepherds Flat Wind Farm in Oregon covers ~80 km^2. To replace the Kashiwazaki nuclear plant with wind would take 750 km^2 to do it!
      Now that’s the best situation. What isn’t in your favorite knowledge bytes is the fact that solar and wind are unpredictably intermittent in most places and require a fossil fuel, hydro or nuclear back-up, free spinning to cut in and fill in the troughs of low renewables to stabilize the grid. This ridiculous situation does not obviate the need to build the standard plants as part of the plan.
      Please let this be the beginning of the development of your own learning and research efforts.

      • Boy, etudiant, if you don’t take a second look at your conclusions after that fine refutation of anti-nuclear power nonsense by Gary Pearse
        (to whom I remain indebted for life! – Gary… did you read my thank you to you on that bogus greener lawsuit thread about 3 weeks ago? I can write it again, but it was kind of embarrassing!!… I so very much want you to know, though, so I may just do that… ),
        you are not a genuine student.
        Thanks for all that great analysis, Professor Pearse.

      • Professor, what would be expected area covered by fuel debris and the time to radioactivity to drop to livable levels in case of catastrophic accident? What is the probability of such an accident in case of mass production of power at nuclear power plants? You are seemingly very educated man, may be you know such numbers…

        • Walt The Physicist

          Professor, what would be expected area covered by fuel debris and the time to radioactivity to drop to livable levels in case of catastrophic accident? What is the probability of such an accident in case of mass production of power at nuclear power plants? You are seemingly very educated man, may be you know such numbers…

          “There have been three major reactor accidents in the history of civil nuclear power – Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima. One was contained without harm to anyone, the next involved an intense fire without provision for containment, and the third severely tested the containment, allowing some release of radioactivity.
          These are the only major accidents to have occurred in over 16,000 cumulative reactor-years of commercial nuclear power operation in 33 countries. ”
          OK, so the “probability” is 3/(16,000 x 365.25 x 24) = 2.14 x 10^-8
          Not too large, actually, since removing nuclear power as a power and heat source would cause many tens of thousands of immediate heat and thermal and “added sickness” deaths, and then hundreds of thousands more as the world tries to somehow do without 1/5 of its electricity.
          You then MUST add the tens of millions secondary deaths from an immediate and irrecoverable permanent depression, plus 5 billion “stress-added” lives now fighting for power, water, sewage operations, food, and refrigeration. (Oopsie. Add a few tens of millions more deaths due to malnutrition and disease and parasites and contamination and rotten food and starvation ….)
          So, how much area would be destroyed by a single catastrophic failure? A few hundred square feet inside the containment dome.
          But then again, you knew that, being a physicist and all.

      • Walter (at 2:14pm)
        Answer: Low enough that thousands of physicists, nuclear engineers, and educated others have concluded that they are fine with nuclear power.
        Do you see something in that fact?
        Do you see that you are, mostly likely unconsciously, arrogantly assuming that your “nuclear power is still not proven-safe” opinion is more accurate than that of all those other human beings??

      • Also, Walter, when a nuclear power plant “fails,” it does not explode into the atmosphere like a giant bomb.

      • Walt, the area covered by fuel debris would be somewhat less than the area covered by the containment building. As to how long till it drops to livable levels, that would be a century or so, but since it is contained inside the containment building, so what.

      • RACook, you should add that newer designs are much safer than older designs.
        All the accidents you mention are old designs. Fukushima was scheduled to be decommissioned, and the Chernobyl design was rejected in the west over safety concerns.
        Lessons learned at 3-mile Island immediately went into new designs being worked on.

    • Living within 10 miles of Three Mile Island since ’76 I can confidently say that the only threat from a nuclear plant is seeing the armed guards patrolling the fence lines. One of them might go crazy. Heck, I’ve landed in many an airliner no more than haf a mile away from the cooling towers;
      TMI was a nuclear disaster. The core melted, there was some Iodine 131 released. But despite all that no deaths from radiation and no detectable deaths from the radiation release that could not be measured. Of course lots of peope played up three legged frogs and sick bass from the Susquehana, a thoroughy polluted river at the time. But the accident was caused by a dated design, poor contro designs, equipment malfuntions, and the human inability to grasp a complicated situation and work out the best response.
      Newer reactors have much better, safer designs, but I’d rather wait for the fail gracefully designs which aren’t quite ready yet..

      • Believe it or not it was not the first time the failure that led to three mile island had occurred in that design series. There was a relief valve in the coolant system that could stick in the open position. If the operator didn’t respond correctly to the coolant loss by immediately turning on the booster pumps, the coolant would boil off and by the time the indicator read too hot, it was too late. When cold water hit the now way too hot rods, they shattered spilling nuclear fuel on the floors. The steel of the containment floor acted as the new coolant for the fuel and encased most of the material harmlessly in the now radioactive containment floor. The steel acted both as coolant and neutron absorber, stopping fission.
        What is not as well known is the reactor in Columbia, SC had the same failure literally weeks before TMI, but the operator applied the booster pumps and no “accident” occurred. After TMI, if such an event occurs, every other operator of a similar reactor receives an after action report safety bulletin so they can learn from the event. This is probably the single biggest safety outcome of TMI other than the new designs which can completely lose power or be completely submerged and still provide cooling to the reactor, incident reports are shared widely throughout the industry. Before, everyone was on their own and didn’t even know that something similar was already solved.

    • Are you really trying to claim that standard power plants take up substantially less space and cooling water than do nuclear plants?
      As to rampant corruption, that would plague standard power plants as well.
      Since every complaint you come up with regarding nuclear also applies to every other form of energy, and most even more so, I can only conclude that:
      A) You are extremely ignorant regarding nuclear power
      B) You are opposed to all forms of energy
      C) You are lying

    • “The plants need considerable space… ”
      Wrong. Saves me the trouble of reading the rest.

  10. Honest people are as good as their words, and vice versa. This controversy shows that the greens aren’t *really* interested in non-polluting energy. They are either anti-technology zealots (neo-Luddites), or interested in controlling people and energy, which is difficult to do if energy is inexpensive and abundant.

    • When you put your mind to it and have a true objective observer, critical thinking is actually easy. Now, when you accept that NO human has been honest throughout the course of their entire lives, you enter into a much harder endeavor.

  11. Although technically nuclear power is obviously great solution and it can very safe, in reality it will be absolutely unsafe. Because of its nature, the logistics of nuclear power production will be so much regulated and controlled by the governments, that it will be essentially government enterprise. Putting aside political consideration, – it will be a huge irreversible step toward socialism or communism, if you wish,- the technical part will be such that government owned nuclear energy production will have safety that is typical for a government organization. And history shows that even governments of civilized and technologically advanced societies, like Japan, are unable to provide level of safety required for use of nuclear power (Fukushima). History also shows that low tech and authoritarian governments, like it was in Soviet Russia, can actually wipe all of us from the face of the Earth (Chernobyl). Now picture China will produce energy with 1000s of nuclear reactors. Also, picture India… No, picture Somalia!

    • Walt! (yelling to try to get that glassy stare off his face) Look at the case of the nuclear power industry in the United States!! It is very safe. But — for — government regulation, it would be thriving. It is not more likely to be taken over by the communists in the U.S. than ANY of the power generating industries.
      Fukushima resulted in NO one being harmed by nuclear radiation. NO ONE.
      Walt! You — are — one — of — the irrational-fear-due-to-ignorance people! Can you hear me??
      Walt is a case in point demonstrating (right here before our very eyes! 🙂 ) that one can only ignore the ignorant and DO THE RIGHT THING. Unstrangle the nuclear power industry.

      • Well, you can say that no one was harmed in Chernobyl accident either. That is according to the government data. That is exactly how governments operate. But I bet you that in 10 years or so they will find higher cancer rates in the areas near Fuckushima.
        The US record is following: very small industry, serious accident – Three Mile Island. What do you think about safety record that will be in nuclear power production in Djibouti?

        • Walt says:
          …very small industry, serious accident – Three Mile Island.
          No one was killed there. If I’m wrong… name them.
          The fear of nuclear power is rooted in ignorance and superstition, much like the “climate change” scare. Thousands of people have been killed in fossil fuel production and building dams. By comparison, nuclear is extremely safe.

          • Welcome back Mr Measurement.
            Personally, the yuletide season was quite an eye opener for me. Traveled alot. Spent lots of time with young up and comers (18 to 35) and almost none of them held a firm belief in CAGW (in private). They did however feel quite the dedication to a new energy frontier and don’t really care if CAGW is real. My sense is they think its rather ridiculous to continue debating the issue and are instead focusing on how to put a fork in fossil fuels.
            The more worldly ones are definitely intrigued by their idols (Gates and Zucker) investments in next gen nuke.
            Interesting generation.
            I’m left with the impression that since they have never really experienced bad times, they are divorced from the repercussions of decisions based on poor foundations. In their minds, wealth is unlimited and it’s just a matter of wealth realignment that will create the world they envision.

      • Janice, anyone that feels that they have to put ” Physicist ” in their online name, probably didn’t get past grade school…Don’t waste your valued breath !!

      • Janice
        I’m surprised that you try to debate the unreasonable fear of nuke power with reasonable man tactics.
        Most unreasonable fear is rooted in the desire of the fearful to be noticed, appreciated and to matter. Sure, try the reasonable approach, but never loose touch with why their subconscious drives them to be fearful or things that they shouldn’t fear.

      • Thank you for coming to my rescue (from a hopeless argument) Marcus and Knute. Your concern (and Marcus’ compliment) are heartwarming. 🙂
        Good point! Well… sometimes, I argue in the off chance that a silent reader will read what I wrote and thereby not be confused or misled by the unreasonable commenter.

      • @ Knutesea,@ 1.55 pm you said:
        “I’m left with the impression that since they have never really experienced bad times, they are divorced from the repercussions of decisions based on poor foundations. In their minds, wealth is unlimited and it’s just a matter of wealth realignment that will create the world they envision.’
        + many I could not have said it any better, you hit the nail on the head. I see it all around us whenevr the discussion goes there!

    • Walt , I am looking at the current power supply in France , 65.8GW, of which 56GW or about 85% is nuclear That has been the typical pattern as long as I have been looking at the figures .
      I am not aware of any major incidents in that time affecting France’s nuclear installations, although admittedly I have only got interested in this debate in the last 2 years .
      Incidentally France’s nuclear power output exceeds the total UK output from all sources by about 16GW.

      • France produces total 1/10 of what China or US produce and probably 1/30 of what Africa needs. Now, what will be expected safety record in Africa?

      • Walt, you may feel that you are getting it from all sides, but stay focused.
        We can’t control nuke energy policy/regulations in India, China, or any of the African countries; so why bring it up?
        Yes, planning and safety regs in USA will be onerous, but it will allow for safe (if not optimum efficient) operation of nuke energy production. I would be happy to have a (above referenced Westinghouse AP1000) nuclear plant in my neighborhood if the kw/hr costs could then remain below $0.10.
        As an aside and to answer your above post, If I try really hard I can imagine what Somalia would be like with reliable energy for all of the people that live there. Things might just change for the better. I can’t imagine things changing for the better without a reliable energy source.

    • Huh? Chernobyl wiped all of us from the face of the Earth?
      The worst documented nuclear disaster killed how many people?

      • Exactly.
        Just a fact free rant, divorced from reality.
        I understand the area around Chernobyl is now a case study in how fast wildlife can re-establish in the absence of a human presence.
        The place is a veritable wildlife preserve…and no three eyed fish, neither.
        Maybe Walt needs to read about radiation hormesis.
        Maybe Walt the Physicist needs to speak with Walt the Biologist?

    • Walt, only 75 people have died world wide in nuclear reactor accidents since the 1950s, about half that in Chernobyl (not the 25,000 that was being barked by the UN and others) and this was a Soviet no frills plant without redundancies and safety infrastructure built before the existence of super computer controls and safety. Only one(!!!) had died in France, the most nuked power country in the world and this may have been a forklift accident in a spent rod plant.
      Chernobyl – you drank the Kool Aid, shame on you – a physicist no less. Back to school Walt: Here is an article on the exclusion zone around Chernobyl. It has become a European Serengeti, taken over by animals large and small, some of which were thought to have been extirpated in Europe. Of course google will serve you up the greenie flood of misinformation that goes with this sort of thing on the internet. And yes, there were mutants, but can you guess what happened to them? They were devoured by healthy predators!! Darwin would be pleased.
      “When Mary Mycio tells people she visited the radioactive fallout zone around Chernobyl to study the region’s animals, the questions are always the same. Do the animals have two heads? Do they glow?
      Actually, according to Mycio and photographer and field biologist Sergey Gaschak, the animals are thriving.

      • No doubt that in absolute terms safety record of nuclear power seems fine. But what would be the numbers normalized per Watt produced per year in service as compared to the safety record of “traditional” power plants (including hydro-). That will be interesting numbers to compare. As far as Chernobyl is concerned neither you nor I know the true numbers as well as the real impact.

      • Gary
        Lots of current and past studies on Chernobyl. Wildlife is flourishing but I’d want to know more before I munched down on a hunted boar. Much like CAGW, I’m sure the spin of the variety of studies will resurrect themselves as nukes are politically pushed and it will become increasingly hard to zero in on good literature. Here’s one that attributes far more post incident deaths …
        I’m not advocating its facts, just sharing the plethora of research that’s out there.

      • Christopher Paino: Are the nuclear power plants in the United States built and maintained like the one in Chernobyl was?

      • There was a really good program on BBC where a reporter spend weeks going through the Chernobyl region in restricted areas. People were actually still living there, growing vegetables, hunting ( as they have done for generations) fishing and just living life. He found no ill effects but actually there was a vibrant population of people, animals and growth. As others have mentioned it was a terrible design with few proper controls such as fire protection.
        As such Walt the “physicist” You better check the KoolAid you are drinking I am starting to worry it is contaminated and who knows it may actually have radiation problems.
        ( I was amazed the BBC actually broadcast the hour long program)

      • The real problem in Nuclear Safety is the idea that somehow radiation is foreign to the human evolution. We draw a straight line from lethal dose to zero dose and say “radiation bad!”. Actual study of humans in radiation zones seems to indicate that some small dose of radiation actually boosts our immune system and leads to less genetic malformation. The problem lies in the definition of “Small”. What seems beneficial for one person causes leukemia in another. Drawing the line on where damage starts to outweigh benefit in the “generic human” is the rub.

      • knutesea:
        It was an episode of Top Gear and can be viewed here.
        Jeremy Clarkson toured the Chernobyl area.

    • @Walt the Physicist and Etudiant.
      The link to the Wikipedia article above lists the the number of deaths from fossil fuel-related accidents (among other causes) gobally going all the way back to 1962. The last time I added up all the deaths from natural gas and other fossil fuel accidents (which was some years ago) I believe I came up with a number that was in the 10’s of thousands.
      Walt and Etudiant, if there is any list of nuclear energy related deaths somewhere that is anywhere near as long and as deadly as the one linked to above, I would appreciate your showing it to me because I do not know of one offhand. It never ceases to amaze me how nuclear energy gets bashed and bashed again by individuals because of Chernobyl, Three Mile Island and Fukushima without these individuals having done their homework and having made themselves aware of how many have died around the world from fossil fuel-related accidents over the decades.
      Please don’t bother giving me the “all-radiation-is-dangerous” argument without being able to debunk the scientific evidence supporting the Radation Hormesis Hypothesis. And please don’t give me the “their-is-no-solution-to-the-plutonium-waste-issue” argument without checkout out Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor (which China is developing now) also known as LFTR as well as GE’s PRISM reactor.
      When one allows fear, hate and mistrust to dominate and muddy the waters of one’s thinking and uses his or her emotions to formulate his/her opinions and belief systems, the chances are that those opinions and beliefs are going to be found to be faulty when facts, science, logic and reasoning are applied to them.

      • Walt should also stop driving his car as 36,000 people get killed every year in the States alone, but frankly I decided he is a troll looking to get attention . ( My last comment on the subject, I am wasting my time)
        . I just wish we’d go all out on nuclear and a suggestion. why not build them where Hydro dams are? lots of cooling water and you get 2 bangs for your buck!

    • Wow, the fake physicist really knows how to throw the bull.
      Let me see if get this straight. Govt regulation leads to govt ownership, therefore nuclear power will lead us to a one world totalitarian govt.
      If that’s what you actually believe, than why not oppose all govt regulation of everything.

  12. Just think how many more Russian nuclear plants could have been ordered shortly after the Paris meetings if India had gotten what it wanted from blank checks by Kerry et al.

  13. Besides being the greenest power available, the economic viability is so compelling, it’s absurd that the Green’s are so opposed to it. A nuclear power plant, including overburdening regulations, decommissioning costs and land costs less than PV on a cost per peak W basis and this doesn’t include the cost of energy storage which is required to make PV viable on a commercial scale. A nuke can deliver its peak capacity 24/7, while the PV duty cycle in the most optimistic case is about 15%. A GW nuclear plant occupies a few acres, while a GW (peak) PV array would occupy about 5 square miles and if you wanted a net GW, it would occupy over 30 square miles leading to operating costs far in excess of those of a nuclear plant, including fuel.
    It’s truly unfortunate that ignorance has replaced science and if this is not reversed, it will lead to the downfall of civilization and this is the largest danger we face from ‘climate change’. So in a perverse way, Obama is right.

    • Let me ask you, who will regulate safety of these multiple nuclear power plants that will be essentially owned by the government? The government… And you think that it will work?

      • Walt, my dad worked for 7 years as a “fireman” at a major petroleum refinery–who is a person that does NOT put out fires, but actually initiates and controls the boiler fires at the bottom of the fractionation towers. Fractionation involves the separation of all liquid and near-liquid hydrocarbons native to petroleum, and is therefore quite dangerous. It doesn’t take much for a mistake to become a catastrophe, and refineries generally have huge tank farms with volatile, pre-refined petroleum.
        My point is that we do not spend hours awake at night, quaking in our beds, fearful of prospective explosions or fires at the hundreds of refinery facilities around the nation. Get a grip. Find something real to fear.

      • Walt,
        Regulating safety is something that can only happen when the government does not own the plants and they do not now or ever should own them, at least in the US. Government generally opts out of the regulations it imposes on industry for ‘national security reasons’ as witnessed by the few reactors they do own for weapons production.

      • Walt,
        It’s called the NRC (Nuclear Regulatory Commission). If they weren’t strangled by the politicos and greens, they can, and do, do a good job of regulating the industry. Fear of nuclear power is and has been, for years, a political tactic.

      • initiates and controls the boiler fires at the bottom of the fractionation towers
        Huh? I’ve never seen fire anywhere near fractionation towers. Fractionation towers are heated by steam or electricity. The fire happens in boilers, fired heaters, etc.

      • Oh, yeah, Walt-the-Fizzicist-in-the-AlkaSeltzer-Factory. You’re grasping at straws, trying to find an argument that holds up against nuclear. I expect soon you’ll be lamenting the possibility that someone driving by a nuclear plant will be seized with fear of radiation and run off the road. That someone would be you, most likely.

      • Walt,
        If they are AP1000, they could likely be regulated by baboons as long as no one monkeyed with the three redundant cooling systems. A good engineer or two in control and the thing will last forever (or near enough with refuelings)

  14. If you’re going to cap CO2 emissions and keep all the benefits of large-scale energy availability, there is simply no known alternative to nuclear. All forms of green energy are much too low-density to be effective replacements. How do you power a 100,000 ton container ship across the Pacific? Row it with galley slaves? (now there’s a green job creating opportunity, eh?) How about sails?(better not ship any green bananas). These people are just not thinking the consequences through.

    • Want to make nuke power all the rage ?
      Promise everyone in your country that they will individually increase their wealth.
      The country will be safer.
      Their children will have a better life.
      If this initiative was done in the above spirit, people would fight to make it happen.
      It’s easy.

      • Hi, Knute, glad to see you back on board commenting. Your pithy, pleasant, presence was missed. Janice

        • Janice
          Thanks for noticing. I’ve been around, but late to the party.
          Hope you had a fabulous yuletide season and are paying attention to the 2016 unraveling of the bloated equity markets. Case in point, NYC real estate has NEVER been higher.
          Mr Pithy

  15. It seems so odd that young folk who faun so after Star Wars and Star Trek and their mega machines with so many high energy drivers/weapons/ and mastery of dangerous physics should be so leery of nuclear power as the obvious first step on the way to the stars. Crazy

  16. With nuclear power, they can only regulate a few power plants. With CO2 emissions, they can regulate everybody.

  17. To Janice More:
    But who will regulate nuclear power production in Djibouti? How the nonproliferation will be imposed? With current relatively few nuclear players IAEA is impotent to control the situation. Besides, even if the working mechanisms are created, still, it would mean bigger governments. Many people, who are disgusted with any signs of socialism, would be happy with coal, oil, and gas that will last for long time. Since, it seems that the environmental impact of this industry is already very small and continues to improve.

    • YOU do not have control of what other countries use for energy and neither does the rest of the world !

    • Dear Walt, Physicist,
      How will not building/expanding the nuclear power industry in the United States prevent more Chernobyls from happening?
      And, by the way, your breath (ref. a comment made above) is valued, too. Of course.
      Best wishes finding out the facts,
      Janice (going to lunch, now)

      • Yes, in the US it can be safe. But then we are talking about excluding all these brown and yellow people from the energy club. In the meantime if they are included in such a club it will be “like a child idiot with a machinegun”. how to resolve such a dilemma?

      • But then we are talking about excluding all these brown and yellow people from the energy club. In the meantime if they are included in such a club it will be “like a child idiot with a machinegun”. how to resolve such a dilemma?

        Oh Man. Vote one for US president and nominate some as UN secretary general, IPCC Chair, President of World Bank etc.

      • Walt: Too late India, Pakistan, South Africa, China all already have the power plants and the bombs if you are worried about the cat getting out of the bag it’s too late. The only solution is to bring the rest of the world into the 21st century at the same time that we continuously develop the military/technological counter measures to defend ourselves from assault. Otherwise the leap will never be made into the 22nd or 23rd century.

      • Walt, you have no shame at all. A better informed and reasonable person would have quietly left his losing argument behind and perhaps try to make a contribution on a loftier plane. But what do you come up with for an encore? That yellow and brown people would be irresponsible and dangerous having this technology!!! Asians are already well hooked up with nuclear power, South Africa has two and will be building more. Indeed, the design their own. Anyway I don’t wish to try to educate the ineducable. It tells me also, that you wouldn’t know physics from fricassee. I’m out.

    • Well I have to agree there were some “tarts” in high school. Meanwhile look at all those giga tons of water vapor hurling into the troposphere out of the cooling towers. We’re doomed ’cause water vapor is much more potent than CO2 when it comes to throwing the oh-so-finely balanced climate irretrievably out of whack. A perturbation of that magnitude spells doom for polar bears.

      • I realize that your tongue is quickly firmly planted in your cheek, but I just had to mention that the only thing all that extra humidity will do is to ever so slightly increase the rainfall downwind.

  18. Not in my backyard is not just a liberal concern, I think fusion is the only viable alternative to replace the age of hydrocarbons.

    • Why? If a fusion reactor breaks containment you have a million K ball of fire being released unless you think cold fusion is “right around the corner”. Fusion at commercial scales is actually scary. The amount of nuclei binding to release the energy to produce the power of an AP1000 series fission reactor is mind blowing. A plasma release of that proportion could take out a large area.
      Right now we call it a success if a few nuclei fuse over a few microseconds, releasing several orders of magnitude less energy than put into it to cause the nuclei to be in a state to fuse. Give me a modern fission reactor any day. While we are at it, lets begin reprocessing all those poisoned fuel rods to make fresh rods for new reactors. Building fuel processing plants should be a major priority. All those that are worried we will be able to collect plutonium in doing so should just stuff it! Plutonium works as a fine reactor fuel too, just reprocess it and ship it to appropriate plants!

      • It’s not the temperature that matters, but the total amount of energy.
        Yes it’s hot, but it’s a gas and there’s only a few ounces of it. If it breaks containment, everything in the room will be scorched, perhaps even melted a bit.
        Outside the room, no big deal.

      • MarkW,
        So you are saying that there is only going to be a couple of mols of the plasma for a reaction that has a 10^-20 ish barns cross-section to release 1000MW worth of energy. (thats about 10^21 MeV of mass defect each second – before losses and heat engine efficiencies are taken into account). I don’t think the math adds up on that. You either need to find a way to get that cross-section up closer to unity or you probably aren’t going to get commercially viable power. There are only two ways to increase your output in a low cross-section reaction: the brute force method (lots of particles in a small space at high temperature) or some very careful resonance management. The resonance bands are still in the 10^-7 barn area, so still a little difficult.
        Maybe some smart person will figure out a way to engineer your couple of mols at a time reaction to produce 10^21 MeV of mass defect per second, but I have a feeling it is a long ways away.

  19. Because the Indian government doesn’t get it. This is not about reducing CO2. It’s about building political power. Advancing nuclear would not achive this goal.

      • @ Knutesea, Re Chernobyl / BBC. Go to their site click search enter “Chernobyl it will give you 3-4 programs I am still trying to find the exact one but I think the guy called Peter is the one that did the doc. ( but maybe it was an indy type he sold to BBC I’ll keep on trying), Cheers!

    • Having done lots of business with people from India, I can assure you that they get “it” probably better than Americans do. they are far more in touch with poverty and having to do without. That poverty surrounds them and grounds them in reality.

      • Oh, I have no doubt the Indians know about reducing poverty. They’ve been doing a remarkable job of it over the past 30 years or so. What they don’t get is shaming nuclear to build political power, as it’s done in the West. The CAGW green’s response to nuclear proves that they are not about reducing CO2, but rather advancing communist power structures.

      • India is still hampered by an onerous bureaucracy. To take but one example, truckers lose hours to days waiting for inspection at state boundaries. Another is the inability of consumer electronics corporations to set up their own stores in Indian malls or shopping centers. Apple for instance can’t build Apple Stores there, but has to find space in a local company’s store.
        The dead hand of India’s socialist regulatory past still weighs heavily on its brightening future.

  20. Terrific documentary, “Pandora’s Promise” on Netflix with leading environmentalists ‘changing their minds’ and now proponents of nuclear. (Still get digs in to climate deniers.) Mark Lyenas was featured but has changed his tune on GMO, on nuclear and still waiting for him to ‘get it’ on climate.

      • Knute: I just went to youtube and watched about 5 minutes of part I of “Pandora’s Promise.” I was going to post the link, here, but changed my mind after watching the first 5 minutes or so. Regardless of whatever merits it may have, it appears to be full of misinformation about the radiation danger from: 1) Fukushima itself; and 2) nuclear power in general.
        Let us know if it is not subtle anti-nuclear-industry-propaganda-in-disguise (if you watch it – I’m not going to bother after that intro.).

  21. It looks like the discussion shifted from “safety of brown and yellow people using nuclear power” to “tarts in high school”.

    • Me, I’m OK with yellow, brown, and black people. I think it would be wonderful if they had plenty of affordable power. (I’d rather like affordable power for my own family too.) That would improve their safety. I also think there are plenty of yellow, brown, and black adults who could operate nuclear power plants safely, and if you don’t trust them yourself, just make sure their families live, work, and go to school next to the power plants. As for government regulation, I don’t know about your country, but in mine, we’ve seen too many cases where self regulation was in effect no regulation. Anyway, (electric) power to the people (of all colours)!

    • Walt, you have to admit it was one of the more humorous typos we’ve seen lately.
      I can’t tell how serious you are with your concerns over fission power, but I will say that when you start talking about all the bad things that *could* happen you’ve wandered beyond the limits of rational debate. There are no end of things that can go wrong with just about anything and certainly power generation systems, by their nature, are fraught with perils of all sorts. The only way to approach the subject is to calculate the relative probabilities of the known failure modes and measure them against one another. People are typically fearful of the unknown just because it’s unknown. In the 60 years we’ve had practical experience with nuclear power we’ve established real numbers we can use and those numbers tell us that nuclear power is relatively safe, inexpensive and clean. For each concern you’ve raised there’s a practical answer and other readers have given most of them. One I haven’t seen mentioned yet is that thorium cycle reactors are immune from being used in the manufacture of weapons grade nuclear materials (plutonium for example) because the fuel cycle doesn’t permit it (physically, it isn’t a design problem). This is one of the reasons the US didn’t spend any time developing thorium reactors during the 40’s and 50’s; the military wanted nuclear bombs not nuclear power plants. Thorium is much more common also, which is a further benefit.
      Recent reactor designs are much safer than high pressure water cooled uranium reactors and don’t suffer from coolant failures in the same way reactors like TMI, Chernobyl and Fukushima did.
      I live 40 miles from the Diablo Canyon nuclear reactors. My father died of plutonium poisoning, which he contracted from an accidental release at the Hanford breeder reactor in Washington State during the 1950’s, his death was attributed to an “exigency of war”. For 20 years I lived less than 75 miles downwind of INEEL (Idaho National Laboratory) in east central Idaho (I’ve eaten lunch many times in Arco). I’m not talking through my hat when I say I believe nuclear power is safe.

  22. If we are going to build nuclear plants, it should be done only because the power it provides will be economically competitive with coal and gas. Unless and until we stop talking about “carbon pollution”, we aren’t going to be able to get our energy policy right.

    • It is economically viable right now – if we can get the watermelon groups to stop lawfaring it to death. Lawsuit caused delays and injunctions typically double (or more) the cost of building a nuclear power plant, and almost never make any aspect of plant operations safer. In some cases watermelon interference actually caused issues that had to be addressed by plant operators and regulators before things could continue.

      • Owen
        I’ve read your stuff before. You appear to have experience in the field and command of the facts. Have you had success convincing a large group of naysayers to overcome their nimbyness concerning nuke power ? What are their top three concerns that you’ve been able to address ? How did you do that ?
        I’m interested because I’d like to learn how someone succeeded.

      • knutesea,
        In my area, most people are very pro-nuclear power. We have a major DOE facility and several power plants within 70 miles, Nuclear is the third largest employer in the region. There is a very small, very vocal group that are scared to death of it and won’t listen to anything. They also get large funding infusions and activist assistance from outside groups to assist in their protests and lawfare.
        I have been arguing since the 70s that TMI was actually a success story – everything failed, yet the containment worked. I read the after-action on that investigation and looked at some of the stuff that was released after they sent the robots into the dead reactor.
        My training is in physics with a nuclear concentration, but I have never actually worked in the industry. For some reason they want younger people in the workforce. I did 24 years in the USAF before returning to college to finish my degree. I followed nuclear issues as part of my job as an intelligence analyst in the Air Force, and was part of the Chernobyl monitoring early in my career before I moved into intelligence.(I maintained the aircraft doing the monitoring so some could say that is a stretch). They classified most of the data so I didn’t see most of it, but we did wash those planes a lot after missions.

      • But my point was that economics, and nothing more should be driving the issue of whether or not to build. And since irrational fear, driven by long-standing myths and by money-grubbing Greenie groups is real, and does drive the costs up, then we have a problem. Nuclear could be economically viable, but only if we want it to be. And that will require lots of education.

  23. The green view on Nuclear energy is easy to understand. The only thing you need to know is that it predates the global warming scare.

    • Exactly Matt, Barry Commoner did his job and the Union of Concerned Scientists was formed to keep the movement going. Commoner shared Ehrlich’s view that there had to be less people but that you could get there by a sort of world wide Luddite socialism resulting in lower birth rates rather than catastrophe as opined by Paul Ehrlich. All modern greendom stems from those two.

      • “Commoner shared Ehrlich’s view that there had to be less people but that you could get there by a sort of world wide Luddite socialism resulting in lower birth rates”
        Actually, “world wide Luddite socialism” is more likely to result in higher birth rates and significantly reduced life expectancy than in lower birth rates.

        • Exactly…Commoner nonetheless thought that “sustainable” low tech no fertilizer, combined with education would do the job. I think that Pol Pot literally put that into practice

  24. what if all the monies spent on CAGW over the past two decades had instead been invested in nuclear fusion R&D?

    • Then by now, with all that additional spending – practical nuclear fusion would only be ten years away!! (sarc)

    • Same rat hole, different name.
      Hot fusion is essentially gravity power, the sun converts gravitational force into radiant energy. It’s completely impractical as a terrestrial power source and that isn’t going to change before humans are capable of manipulating mass and gravity in ways we can’t begin to imagine.
      I have no idea how fusion ever made the list of possible human scale power sources, but I can guess it had something to do with anti-fission lobbies “tossing a bone” to their opponents to prove they weren’t complete Luddites and their only real issue was with nuclear “waste”. Fusion doesn’t have waste! It’s Good high tech energy! See! We aren’t cavemen! I have no other explanation. Fusion makes great science fiction.
      If Walt here has issues with a containment breach,just imagine the fun he’d have worrying about a black hole getting loose in his neighborhood?

      • That is not how the sun works. The energy comes from fusion – the gravity just gets and keeps it all in the right condition for fusion to work.

  25. There is more money to be gleaned through occupying large tracts of land with low-density, unreliable windmill and solar farms than in several hundred civilian operated nuclear reactors operating worldwide.
    As long as they can successfully hide the toxicity and environmental disruption caused by “green” technologies throughout their life cycle from recovery to reclamation, it will be politically difficult to impossible to evaluate each technology and energy source on its unadulterated merits.

    • I’ve come to think that with the UK and US abdicating responsible leadership economically, politically and culturally of the English-Speaking world and Europe in general engaging in economic and cultural genocide, that we will come to consider India and Asia in general as our saviors from the madness of the past 30-40 years. Ask yourselves what leaders have the capability, moxie and policies to act in the best interests of their people (their constituents). Certainly Xi Jinping of China and Modi of India stand out. I would even say there is broad admiration for Putin, despite his somewhat reckless acts. He is strong and goes against the grain of Europe and America. Everywhere else we have kumbaya weaklings with no interest in promoting the interests of their citizens – worse – presiding over the destruction of the greatest civilization of all time that they created. India is definitely going to show us how it needs to be done. They don’t have that inferiority vis a vis Europe anymore, whereas we moronically do.

  26. The far-left green fanatics are opposed to nuclear power simply because it works. They are against any power source that can deliver base-load power, which is what industrialized societies require – power on demand 24-hours a day. Their goal is global deindustrialization and massive depopulation – a completely evil, anti-human philosophy. Condemn them.

    • Far-lefts want to establish world government that will control everything. Commies learned that it is easy to control masses when there is shortage of everything. What about such thought: use of nuclear power will require such great regulation mechanism that it will be like a world government. No shortage of energy, but no freedom either, same as those far-lefts…

      • Dear Walter,
        1. I refer you to Gunga Din here: .
        2. re: “use of nuclear power will…” — it IS being used. All over the world.
        3. Socialism existed for decades where nuclear power was unheard of. Socialism is a metastisizing disease that will always be with us, just a matter of when and where it rears its ugly head, for socialism is simply one variety of that perennial weed, “the dictatorship of the elite” (Friedrich Hayek in The Road to Serfdom). The good thing is, after millions of people have suffered and died under it…., it eventually d1es in each part of the planet it invades, for truth wins out in the end, every time. Even in China, it will not last. China will outlast communism. And it will make its ugly appearance again after that. Africa is large enough and has enough countries for it to occupy, each in turn, for millennia. To forego nuclear power to stop it is like stopping eating so you won’t get cancer.
        As someone above exhorted you: fear not! 🙂

      • Marcus, he’s so afraid of nuclear that he’s willing to use even bad arguments to fight it.
        If he were actually serious about the danger of govt regulation, he would be fighting against regulations in general. But it’s only in this one area that govt regulations are bad.

  27. To any of the readers who might be celebrating Orthodox Christmas (according to the old Julian Calendar) may I wish a happy Christmas and the forthcoming New Year, with the traditional greeting ‘Christ is born’.

    • (since you instructed this ignorant non-Orthodox believer 🙂 )
      In truth, he was born!
      Vukcevic, Forgive me, but, I just can’t bring myself to say “is” born. He isn’t born over and over on Christmas Day (or any other day). He was born. He died. He rose from the dead. He is now in heaven. He will come again!

      • Ms Moore thanks for your comment
        I am not an expert on any of the semantics be it old classic Greek where it came from, Slavic translations of it or for that matter into equivalent English past tenses (pluskvamperfekt and such like), and even less in the religious matters since I grew up in an atheist society. According to my grandma’s clandestine religious instructions it is something to do with being a ‘witness’ or whatever. I just know the dates, greetings and the custom of spreading some straw in the living room, burning the oak Yule log and putting out fire with red wine, all dutifully done last night, no Christmas trees, no shiny bobbles.
        So, I’ll say Shalom Janice.

      • Hi again
        I’ve just inquired with a friend of mine, he reckons it is what is supposed to have been said at the time by shepherds, something like “I bring you good news of great joy, Christ is born’ and then the reply followed ‘In truth he is born’ . Apparently, the greetings are direct repetition of the supposed ‘original’ .

      • Well, thank you, dear Vukcevic who I am SO GLAD is no longer living in that country… . And of COURSE your grandmother was right! 🙂 If it weren’t for the grandmothers (most of them, I mean, there are some mean ones, certainly) of the world… . Dear, dear, grandma… . I will see her (them, actually) again someday and that takes the sting out of the sorrow.
        Your “is” makes sense. It is like the grand, older English, style lyrics of “Joy to the World.”
        Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
        It is hard to put the feeling of that “is” into words, it is like how “Behold!” is grander than “Look!” I like it. And I think I get it, now.
        With best wishes for a very happy 2016,
        may it be your best year, so far,

  28. Greens and Warmistas do not want Nuclear or Hydro power sources as they actually work. They prefer to have people concentrate on Solar and Wind (or Hot Fusion), as these are a waste of time and will create Power chaos and confusion during which the Greens and Warmistas can strip the gullible Western proles of their wealth and make a getaway.

  29. Here is a rather fun story.
    My father ran a nuclear reactor safety division at a national lab for the bulk of his career. (Interestingly, he also did research into the effects of various nuclear exchanges between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. using GCMs he and his team built and was a world expert in this area. He is not impressed, at all, with the present GCMs and the hysteria surrounding AGW)
    Anyway, one of the things that he had for testing was a pool. The pool had a strong beta source at the bottom (I can’t remember what the source was, however, I do remember that the pool had a lovely blue glow) used to irradiate various hardware components for testing purposes. Stick the hardware on a stick, stick it in the pool to irradiate it, pull it out and see if it works. Ok, a bit higher tech than that, but that was the basic idea.
    So after a while he wanted to drain the pool. Some sort of maintenance which required pulling out the radiation source and securing it (lots and lots of lead), emptying the pool, doing whatever needed to be done, then refilling the pool.
    Easy, right?
    Well, no. He had to do some paper work to dump the ‘radioactive’ water into the sewer system. The press heard about the ‘radioactive’ water that was going to be dumped into the sewer system which was followed by stories about how the lab was going to kill everyone and the lab was pure evil for even thinking about releasing the water and PLEASE PLEASE THINK OF THE CHILDREN, etc.
    After a year or so of hearings and meetings he dumped the water.
    Which, incidentally, was *almost* as radioactive as beer. I know because, during one of the ‘family day’ visits when I was a kid, I took a Geiger counter and pointed it at the pool. Then a beer and a radium clock. It was a little demonstration for the kids to understand radiation and various levels.
    So, I learned quite young that a huge number of people a) are scared witless whenever they hear the word nuclear and b) don’t understand radioactivity in the least.

      • LOL, I learned that people don’t listen. You can show them numbers, explain the science, go over actual risks as compared to the perceived risks and talk until you are blue in the face. And most people won’t listen. There was a gigantic op-ed war in the local paper and no matter how many facts were laid out, the folks who were scared just wouldn’t listen.
        Luckily, I don’t have to do that sort of thing.

        • No, they don’t.
          It’s ironic that while we want the right as a community to influence a decision, we are often left in a state of no decision because satisfying most of the people is too darn hard. In your case it didn’t but I imagine that paralysis in decision making like that often leads to its own more urgent problems. It’s almost as if we as a people create our own drama and then temporarily have to give power to “the man” to fix.
          Thanks for the story.

  30. There’s nothing to be baffled about. Nuclear power doesn’t take you back to the stone age. Why is that so hard to understand?

  31. Its simply the greens want an energy crisis, and so they oppose ideas that may its avoided.
    For they consider this crisis offer two features which they find endlessly attractive , firstly it punishes humans for their ‘sins against the planet’ and secondly it offers the best chance to get their madder ideas , such as a end to all personal motorized transport and flying , forced unto people who otherwise would never have any thing to do with .
    Your dealing with people who fantasy about a return to a early time , the rural ideal , when life in reality for most people was shorter and grimmer than now , so do you think that would support ideas that would get in of such ‘progress’

    • @knr, 203 pm, we live in a rural area and fully embrace the “rural idea” but in contrast to the “green” philosophy? We happily took with us every useful gadget our civilization has ever invented and are fully prepared to live a lot longer than these green jerks! ( and that includes a 5.7 ltr Hemi powered 4×4 that was very useful these past few days with over 18″ of snow, freezing rain and pulling those same “greens” out of ditches.).

      • Glad to see you post after that big storm up your way, Tobias. And good — for — you. Reminds me of the U.S. Coast Guard (not, after all required, but “always ready,” they were on the way) heading to the rescue of the Ship of Fools stuck in the Antarctic ice in January, 2014 … good ol’ fossil fuels (and nuclear! 🙂 . Tobias to the rescue! 🙂

  32. There is a serious policy question lurking under the surface of this thread. Gen 3 fission could be done now (e.g. Westinghouse AP1000 type designs with enhanced passive safety). That is what China is building. But if CAGW is not an immediate action demanding crisis, then we collectively have the decade(s) to properly research, vet, and pilot Gen 4 concepts, of which there are at least three major variants, all three also solving the spent fuel problem: travelling wave (TerraPower and Bill Gates), uranium/plutonium molten salt breeder (TransAtomic Power– their white paper is well worth reading), thorium/uranium molten salt breeder (China pilot and Flibe Energy).
    It is not only a yes/no question. It is also a what/when question. Discussed more comprehensively in essay Going Nuclear. IMO gen 4 fission solves any possible remaining nuclear objections. Perhaps that is why the warmunists are so insistent CAGW is an immediate crisis, when it plainly is not.

    • Ristvan
      I purchased and read your book due to your relentless marketing. I figured if you tried so hard, I’d give you the 7 bucks. I like the analysis on conventional/unconventional oil. I noticed you moved the goal posts in a recent thread to 2025 as your book says 2020 for the shift away from more easily gotten oil.
      Where do you think the price of oil will be in 10 Years from now ?

      • The minor goal post shift is because China demand has not grown as much as expected. Nothing more. And my most precise estimate for the peak total production in the book was 2023, essay Peeking at Peaks, last section. (Silly, I know. We will be lucky to bound it within five years given all the uncertainties).
        There are IMF white papers saying $200/bbl before 2025. Those econometric models,relymtoo much on demand side elasticity, and not enough on supply side. I think it more likely between $150 and $170. The reason is that about $180 is the market clearing supply price for FT gas to diesel/kerosene synfuel based on Shell’s Pearl project in Quatar), and also for the EXXON natgas to methanol to syngasoline process (they say- no plant, only lab stuff and projections). Both would alleviate any shortages. It will for sure be well above $100, because that’s necessary just to bring the 5 stranded Yamal giants on line in eastern Siberia above the Arctic circle. Rosneft was muttering about $125.
        Hope you liked the rest of the book, also. My favorites include High Stick Foul (Marcott affair), Shell Games (academic misconduct on OA), and No Bodies (IPCC misrepresentation of extinction risk).

  33. It’s depressing the number of people that I have talked to who believe that the worst case scenario for a nuclear plant would involve a really big mushroom cloud.

    • Where was this photo taken? Is that Chernobyl c. 1986?
      So? So, don’t have Russia build your nuclear reactors.

    • I would say, quite confidently, that exploding a nuclear device on top of a nuclear power station, would be the ultimate worse case scenario. I can’t force myself to do the calculations to indicate resultant effect (tons of fissile material within a near infinite neutron flux…yuck). GK

      • G. Karst , replying to MarkW

        I would say, quite confidently, that exploding a nuclear device on top of a nuclear power station, would be the ultimate worse case scenario. I can’t force myself to do the calculations to indicate resultant effect (tons of fissile material within a near infinite neutron flux…yuck). GK

        Delayed Neutron Data for Thermal Fission in U-235[3]
        Group 	Half-   Decay  	Energy 	Yield, 0n1 	Fraction
        nbr     Life  	Constant (kev)  per fission
        1 	55.72 	0.0124 	250 	0.00052 	0.000215
        2 	22.72 	0.0305 	560 	0.00546 	0.001424
        3 	6.22 	0.111 	405 	0.00310 	0.001274
        4  	2.30 	0.301 	450 	0.00624 	0.002568
        5 	0.614 	1.14 	- 	0.00182 	0.000748
        6 	0.230 	3.01 	- 	0.00066 	0.000273

        From the above, prompt neutrons are responsible for more than 99% of all neutrons emitted during U235 fission. (We will ignore the Pu fission for brevity and clarity). Prompt neutrons are emitted between 10^-13 and 10^-14 seconds after each fission reaction, so, clearly, if the A-bomb (or North Korea’s almost-an-H-bomb) explodes above the containment dome at t=0.0, the existing (reactor-source) neutrons will all be gone at t=0.000000001 seconds. The bomb-source neutrons will have been emitted already, and will have already reacted in the bomb fuel and the bomb-surrounding fissile/fussile material. All will have either been absorbed or decayed (a few) or gone-the-wrong direction (away from the reactor core) BEFORE the physical bomb blast effects (heat, light, gamma rays, pressure waves, shock) reach the top of the containment dome.
        So, no real problem. Now, a “real-world” A-bomb blast in nothing to sneeze at nor laugh at, but it really does only affect a very small area compared to the planet, a continent, a nation, or even a state as a whole. That particular city? Deadly effects.
        But the greenies claim we “must destroy” 6.5 billion out of 7.0 billion humans now living “for the sake of our children”, so what’s not to like?

      • RACookPE1978 – I have never heard this complex scenario reduced to merely the initial pulse of prompt neutrons before. Russia and the US examined the issue separately, and quickly decided it was indeed too horrible to calculate and agreed to NOT target each others fissioning reactors.
        If you do not think this is the worst case scenario for a nuclear power plant, I shudder contemplating your worst case scenario. That’s all I have to say on this subject.
        ps – I am not anti-nuclear in any way. It was my life. We MUST build quickly and wisely.GK

        • If you do not think this is the worst case scenario for a nuclear power plant, I shudder contemplating your worst case scenario. That’s all I have to say on this subject.

          The physical and heat effects of a surface nuclear blast directly above anything – even a nuclear power plant – are “imaginable”. Describable. Horrible to those locally present. Difficult for the nearby area. Survivable by those a few miles out. The removal and re-depostion of the nuclear waste and debris from the power plant merely adds to the millions of tons of debris and radioactive gasses swept up into the fireball, then blown down wind elsewhere.
          The difference between blowing up over a nuclear power plant and “merely” blowing up an average city is simple. NO power plants are in the middle of city. Only a few are in the blast radius of a city – and that only if the largest possible H-bomb is used.
          Thus, if you wish to destroy a power plant and the nearby 1-3 miles of country side and farms with your nuclear weapon, feel free to do so. You will NOT then be sending that nuclear bomb over to blow up above the next city, and thus will be harming many fewer hundreds of thousands with direct deaths and injuries in the fireball and blasts.
          And, by the way, the very dome-like shape and reinforced concrete and lined steel of the nuclear power plant means that a nuclear bomb, like that of a nuclear bomb trying to destroy a missile silo below its steel and conrete shell at ground level, is much less likely to actually be “overwhelmed” by the nuclear blast than almost any other structure. While not surviving (the turbine building and coolers and support structure are certainly lost, like the hotel dome directly under the Hiroshima blast, the nuclear power plant dome is likely to remain partially in place. Maybe not intact, but in place after any but a direct hit.
          Or a nearby truck bomb blowing it sideways. Again, distance is your friend. And your fiend.

      • About the containment dome, I will ask my Father about a nuke hitting a dome or close to it. If you Google F4 Phantom wall you will find a video of a F4 hitting a wall at about 480 mph. Dad ran that test to see what would happen to a containment dome hit by a plane. So, in this particular area, he * is* the world expert.
        I suspect the dome wouldn’t stand up to it. For the record, the. F4 dented the wall about 2.5 inches, iirc.

      • Yes, mod (toss of the head, flip of the pony tail). For Marcus… (wink). Nah, I just do it once in awhile, on a regular basis when I really like something ANYone has written (for about 4 weeks or so, now).
        And, mod., YOU are still special to me, too. 🙂
        Re: Ctrl – J (heh, heh) …. you don’t want to know.. bwah, ha, ha, ha, haaaaaaaaaaaaaa!
        Bye for now!
        Brrrrreeeeerrrrp! (sound of rear tires chirping as I get on the gas in my super-fast sports car, laying down 2 (count ’em) TWO tire tracks)

    • Except the contamination didn’t spread.
      You really got this thing about digging your holes deeper, don’t you.

    • Chaam, if that is one of the Fukushima storage pool explosions then it is purely chemical hrydrogen, produced from an improperly sited and improperly protected spent fuel pool. Gen 1 idiocy. Put the spent fuel pools above ground (stories up) with no containment, site the backup cooling water pump generators near sea level with no protection in an earthquake zone known to produce tsunamis. Early Stupid on stupid. I note for you to research that another Fukushima nuclear complex, only about 20 km away but a gen 2 rather than gen 1, survived unscathed.

      • If the earthquake and tsunami had occurred just a few months later, there would have been no problem as the plant was scheduled to be decommissioned.

  34. This is all very simple to understand.
    Coincidentally, the policies which the greens wish to promote happen to be exactly those policies which serve the interests of Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin.
    This is, of course, a really amazing coincidence.
    And a really lucky break for the cash-strapped Russians.
    It just so happens that at a time of crisis when they were most reliant on selling their gas to Europe, the Greens/Socialists in Europe happened to have successfully opposed homespun nuclear, coal, hydro, and gas extraction – WHILST promoting the installation of wind and solar.
    Wind and solar which due to its unpredictable and unreliable output has actually increased the reliance on highly flexible but expensive CCGT gas generation.
    How amazing is that.
    If a person did not know better then they might suppose that the greens were actually a bunch of brainwashed zombies who have been fed exclusively on a diet of ideological propaganda extending back for 100 years.
    Russian’s oil and gas export earnings are $362.2 billion, or 14.5% of GDP.

  35. United Kingdom by building world’s first civil nuclear reactor in the 1950s was a leader in the nuclear energy industry, but now the new Hinkley Point nuclear power station will be built by Chinese, the world’s biggest builder of nuclear power stations.

    • Yeah – AND importantly, the electricity generated will cost £95 per megawatt hour (inflation adjusted).
      So, quite frankly, this is a massive rip-off.
      Several times the cost of most of the world’s coal and hydro.
      More expensive even than some countries are paying for on-shore wind. And likely to be much more expensive than installed solar PV will be when Hinckley comes on line.
      Even twice the price that the French are paying for their nuclear, it seems.
      An embarrassment to the UK. At least it would be, if we had any pride left.

    • Vuk, as someone who actually working on a nuclear power plant, please note that should the US try and restart a construction plan, the old ‘Made in America’ clause will have to be changed. For one point, the heavy wall rolling of the reactor core (=3″ walls) is not available in the US. Only Japan, China, S. Korea and Russia have that sized equipment any more.

      • First, the US needs to clean up old policies dating from the amazingly wrongheaded Jimmy Carter administration–as in no reprocessing of spent fuel, as we would be setting a good example for the third world on proliferation. The Greens are still playing off that policy and claiming no means of waste disposal. Revising the approval process is a requirement, as the Greens can tie any nuclear project up in process for decades. Really, it is mostly an example of silly politics.

    • According to someone I knew in the nuclear industry, the decision to rebuild was put off just long enough so that all the experts we once had had retired. And no, that’s no conspiracy – it’s just that foreign based nuclear suppliers only saw their opportunity when our politicians threw away our ability to build our own.

  36. The Green opposition to nuclear power is highly rational. It’s their principal method of fundraising.

  37. It is simple. There is nothing about making the world a better place but instead forcing their vision of how the world should work. Cheap, easily available power that you can get from hydro and nuclear power runs counter to controlling people via regulating power.

  38. Indian Energy Experts Baffled by Green Hostility to Nuclear Power”. That’s because the warmists’ beliefs are based on ideology and not science or even economics. They get confused by quaint concepts such as facts when they can self-righteously survive just with faith and dogma!
    Joking aside, some of the most ardent Green supporters now accept that Nuclear is probably an acceptable and available base load renewable power generation system. Others, reasonably not happy with the safety aspects of Uranium Reactors, are now openly supporting massive R&D work for Thorium Reactors, in the way that China and India are doing, which potentially can provide a safer and hopefully quicker and cheaper to build System and without the costly and problematic toxic waste management and disposal and the very expensive de-commissioning. Thorium Reactors can apparently also be fed and treat uranium reactor waste.

    • Actually, no. The nuclear fuel cycle that could use up most (never all) of the existing spent nuclear fuel ‘radwaste’ is molten salt uranium/plutonium. Please go to TransAtomic Power and read their free white paper. MIT spinout. No math. Explains the reasons an initial uranium rather than thorium fertile fuel cycle is probably a better gen 4 starting point. Thorium in the long run, after the additional transatomic issues are solved.
      My request is merely to educate yourself for yourself rather than rely on internet blather–including mine. I have no brief for TransAtomic per se.

  39. Nuclear energy doesn’t kill off Humans fast enough to make the greenies happy, but a hard winter with inadequate energy supplies that freezes a few thousand will put a smile on their face !!

    • Marcus

      Nuclear energy doesn’t kill off Humans fast enough to make the greenies happy, but a hard winter with inadequate energy supplies that freezes a few thousand will put a smile on their face !!

      Make up your mind. NOW! Do the greenies only want to kill 6.5 billion out of 7.0 billion living right now, or would they be satisfied with a mere 10 or 20,000 more deaths each winter for the next 84 years? More specifically to this thread, how many does The Physicist want killed right away due to his/her/its policies and demands, and how many does he/she/it want killed over time?

      • After redefining the essential plant food of CO2 as a “pollutant”, it is only a matter of time before the green Nazis redefine the human population to be a pest that should be destroyed on sight.

      • RA,
        There is an old saying in the military about a few of the adversary blowing themselves up before a battle: “It’s a start”
        The road to 6.5 billion leads through a whole lot of 10 or 20 thousands.

  40. it’s easy to understand this if you understand that fundamentally the global warming = anti-CO2 movement is a thin veneer to cover what is essentially an anti-industry, anti-capitalist campaign which only uses CO2 and fossil fuels as a convenient stick to try to force us to their “natural” world which means a world devoid of power, devoid of consumer goods, and by extension devoid of hospitals, medicine, computers, educations.

    • Nah, my impression is that the followers of the creed want both the trappings of the modern world and the preservation of nature. I don’t meet too many cave dweller wanna be’s … at least in the 18 to 35 year old bracket.

      • The followers don’t bother to think about the consequences of their green beliefs.. The leadership on the other hand knows very well what they are doing.

        • And then they get older.
          The high end creeps into the 40s and starts to get more conservative.
          They pay more bills. Have mouths to feed. College to pay for.
          Reality changes for them.
          The “leaders” have about 10 more years to pull off the transfer of wealth associated with energy unless they are successful at new fresh recruits. Political opinion is not a static entity. A backlash is coming because “backlash” is the nature of politics since at least Watergate. What will the backlash be ?
          What will be the triggering events ?
          A rather normal major correction to the current 30 year boom is what is most likely.

      • Marcus,
        While the lemming imagery is compelling, the whole thing is reported to be the creation of a Disney producer looking for interesting footage to sell to the kiddies. Thus it is a perfect analogy for CAGW – compelling, but fake.

      • I debated a young fool a few years ago who was convinced that the hunter gatherer lifestyle was the best lifestyle for humanity and that the biggest mistake our ancestors ever made was inventing agriculture.
        In years past I’ve dealt with other idealists who were convinced that prior to the arrival of the white man, native Americans were routinely living to 80 years of age and were healthy as horses.
        They were so delusional that they believed there was no conflict or warfare prior to the arrival of the white man. One of them even told me that the tomahawk was actually used as a gardening implement until the white man taught the natives how to also use it to kill.

      • knutesea, the question is, who are you going to get to blind those lemmings and will be able to get it past the ASPCA.

  41. Viability & acceptability of Nuclear Power by India as an alternate power production:
    Nuclear power production process contribute to greenhouse gases and other hazardous pollutants
    The nuclear power production process don’t fit into “security, safety & economy” on the one hand and on the other hand “environmental & social” concepts
    Unlike other power production process, in nuclear power production process different stages of nuclear fuel cycles are counted as separate entities while assessing the cost of power production per unit and only the power production component is accounted in the estimation of cost of power per unit – that is government subsidies component is not included in this
    Carbon dioxide is released in every component of nuclear fuel cycle except the actual fusion in the reactor – fossil fuels are involved in the mining – transport – milling conversion, processing of ore, enrichment of the fuel, in the handling of the mill tailings, in the fuel can preparation, in the construction of the plant and its de-commissioning-demolition as lifespan short, in the handling of the spent waste, in its processing and vitrification and in digging the hole in rock for its deposition, etc and in the manufacturing of the necessary required equipment in all the stages
    Around the 60% of the power plant cost goes towards the equipment, and most of which is to be imported and in the manufacturing fossil fuel energy is used and thus it is a high fossil fuel energy intensive power production. While in the coal based power, more than 40% of the cost goes to fuel and here the stages are mining to power plant and unlike in nuclear power cycles the equipment required in this process is less than 10% of nuclear power cycle
    Unlike other power production process in nuclear power production process majority share goes to imports and thus major beneficiaries in nuclear power process are multinational Western Companies
    Finally, nuclear power is not a renewable energy as its fuel is non-renewable
     Fuel – India has to depend on supplies from the developed countries – India has to accept their bargain agenda
     The spent fuel storage is a critical issue, yet no solution was found
     Mining has both radiological and non-radiological health hazards on life forms and help in the degradation of the environment
     The life of the reactor is very short and the dismantling of such reactors is costly & risky
     By adding subsidy component the nuclear power is not a cheap energy
     It requires huge equipment during the several phases of the fuel cycle. Majority of them must be imported
     Tail pond maintenance for years is heavy environmental hazard
    USA government directly negotiated with the Indian government in weakening the liability clause in any eventuality to protect the suppliers of nuclear equipment.
    With huge population size, nuclear power as an alternative a risky proposition to India.
    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

    • Ya know, Dr. (Dr.?? of WHAT? How could you earn a doctorate in ANY subject making you a fit spokesperson for the Indian nuclear power industry and yet be so ignorant of what the average college hard science graduate in the U.S. knows about nuclear power??) Reddy, what you wrote is SO full of errors it is amazing to see it. Now, if you were writing about India in 1950, maybe so. But, now???

      “Greenhouse gases”

      — (water is the main one released by a nuclear plant) are not “dangerous” – there is NO evidence that they are. They are not “pollutants.”

      “Carbon dioxide is released”

      – So what?

      “it is a high fossil fuel energy intensive power production”

      (taking this as given) – So what?

      “60% of the power plant cost goes towards the equipment, and most of which is to be imported”

      – So? France, England, other countries manage just fine… .

      “majority share goes to imports and thus major beneficiaries in nuclear power process are multinational Western Companies”

      – So what? The MAIN beneficiaries are the Indian people who get the benefit of lower cost power (and jobs at plants built in India due to that lower cost power).

      “nuclear power is not a renewable energy”

      – SO WHAT??

      “Fuel – India has to depend on supplies from the developed countries – India has to accept their bargain agenda”

      – So? There is enough competition that the deal good enough, i.e., it will be worth Indian consumers’ while to make it.
      8. Re: fuel – a little goes a looooong way.

      “spent fuel storage is a critical issue, yet no solution was found”

      – Oh, come, now. Have ALL India’s nuclear industry experts fled the land?? They could tell you that there are several options. What’s wrong with dry cask storage (used in U.S. since the envirostalinists have kept the Yucca storage facility on lock-down)? France ships its waste to the U.S. What about Madagascar? Won’t they take it for a fee? NO ONE in your region will??

      “Mining has both radiological and non-radiological health hazards on life forms and help in the degradation of the environment”

      — ??? This is nonsensical gibberish! You are a Dr.???

      “life of the reactor is very short and the dismantling of such reactors is costly & risky”

      – Wrong. And why talk about dismantling at all??

      “adding subsidy component”

      – So, don’t.

      “Tail pond maintenance for years is heavy environmental hazard.”

      – Doesn’t have to be. Are you copying and pasting this out of your memo from the Chinese titled: How to Keep India Poor and Dependent on China?

      “USA government directly negotiated with the Indian government in weakening the liability clause …”

      – So? Is the product supplied fit-for-purpose? THAT is the important thing in a contract – who pays damages for a highly unlikely failure is of relatively little importance. Key is: IS THE PRODUCT GOOD QUALITY? If not, buy from someone else. That is, if the risk of failure is high, don’t try to make up for it with a liability clause. If you do, you are a fool.

      “With huge population size…”

      – How in the world is this an argument AGAINST using nuclear power??
      “Dr.” Reddy: with your Indian-sounding name, you are a disgrace to all Indians everywhere, many of whom are brilliant mathematicians, physicists, chemists, and engineers. I hope you never return to WUWT, for their sake.
      Janice, staring at you right now with eyes that could vaporize steel…

      • Wow JM … ::: making sure to have my shit together :::
        Siting up straight.
        Eyes front.
        [The mods remind knutsea that it is important to be sitting up straight over an open site while siting the future when sh*t is being held out of sight. .mod]

      • Dear Knute,
        Lol, never. No, that “look” is reserved for only a very few, choice, creeps. Keep on being wonderful you, “together” or not, and no glare will ever be aimed in your direction from this pair of eyes.
        Thank you for your taking the time to have a little fun — such a welcome pleasure.
        Your WUWT pal,

      • Gee!!! Janice remind me (asybot) to never get into an argument with you, and is +, ( I don’t know how many) 100 enough?:) and I am glad you sound like your chipper self these days!!.

      • Janice Moore — It is clear that you don’t the subject, you don’t read the full sentences, and so you put all garbage abusing others. It is a shame!!!
        Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

      • I love the way the good doctor dismisses all of your comments with a statement that you simply don’t understand the subject.
        That’s the way ideologues always argue.

      • Well done, Janice, but you let one big one slip by you. Because of India’s isolation from the world nuclear community, it had to develop all its own industrial infrastructure for reactor components and services. Hence, the good doctor’s claim about benefits disproportionately going to foreign suppliers is simply a lie.
        It should also be noted, for those who care about this issue, that on a life cycle basis, nuclear energy emits less CO2 than solar and wind. In terms of plant construction, nuclear uses about half the concrete and 1/3 the steel of an equivalent megawattage of wind. Given that wind has a quarter of the capacity factor of nuclear, that means essentially that wind requires eight times as much concrete and 12 times as much steel per kWh produced by the two systems.
        A typical nuclear power plant of about 1000 MW will use about 150 tonnes of fuel per year. Think of a three-metre cube as the volume. By contrast, a coal-fired station of similar capacity will use about 1.5 million tonnes of coal per year. It’s because of the fuel transport problems that nuclear became essential in the late 1960s, and it remains so to this day.

      • Thank you, cgh (2:55pm).
        From someone as well-informed and sharply attentive as you that is high praise. Lol, I didn’t even SEE that big rhinoceros charging past me! Glad you did. And shot it down — BAM!
        With a respectful nod,

    • Actually the Yankee Rowe Nuclear Power plant that was the first commercial plant in New England it was immensely profitable and successful. It was extremely conservative but built to ASME standards before the nuclear QA 10CFR50 nightmare. and foolish Dr. Reddy and his likes. It produced for it’s useful life was dismantled and nothing is there now.

      • Eric Worrall — stil to date there is no commercial viable technology to produce power from Thorium. In fact there no opposition to this unlike Uranium based. The only problem with this is, thorium is available in Beach Sand, signifcantly along the Kerala state coast. Once this is removed the strength of the coast line will be weakened unless the government takes precautionary measures to counter this. You are aware the fact that corruption over rides the safety in India.
        After building Uranium based reactors, with the non-availability of fuel, they were running at around the half the capacity [older ones; but I don’t have for the Kalapakkam in Tmil Nadu plant with Russuan’s support].
        Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

      • Dr. Reddy’s stupidity never stops. Indian heavy water reactors, like CANDUs, are ideal for using thorium fuel without any modification to the reactor.

      • cgs — people of your ilk are unfit to be called as humans!!!
        Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

        • Shouldn’t ad homs be at least a bit creative … how about
          “you are obviously part of a lower gene pool who can’t envision the wisdom of my magnificence” ???

      • Pretty sad.
        Dr. S. has nearly reached the: “‘Shut-up!’ he explained” Level.
        Next level: Spitting.
        (hat tip to Mark Steyn to go with my own slightly misquoted version of the Ring Lardner quote )

    • supplement — I said that “Nuclear power production process contribute to greenhouse gases and other hazardous pollutants — — Carbon dioxide is released in every component of nuclear fuel cycle except the actual fusion in the reactor”. You can see here, nowhere I said carbon dioxide is released in actual fusion in the reactor.
      Similar to Coal, the Uranium ore is mined that contain more hazardous pollutants than the coal. For 150 tons of Uranium how many tons of ore is required? Again this depends upon the ore type. Indian ore is of poor quality and thus require more ore per ton of Uranium.
      If there is a simple technology for power production using thorium, Indian government should have started this.
      Finally, If somebody wants to comment, learn how to comment — abusive language will discredit the blog itself.
      If somebody putforth his views, and if you disagree you say so in a polite way. This is the style of educated people.
      Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

      • Wow Dr R.
        Launch an ad hom, bad one at that and then launch a criticsm of ad hom. You have much to learn about how to be a master baiter.

  42. Because it’s not about CO2. The Greens have decided the best thing for earth is to depopulate it. Cheap power of any kind is not on the agenda.

  43. Well…. I started in highschool as a Glenn T Seaborg recruit to the National Conference on Nuclear energy in Chicago in 1967. I ended up in a specialty steel fabricating facility with a class 1 N stamp. I left after Jane Fonda and 3 mile Island destroyed the industry. Three Mile Island was a curious “accident” enough said. Only whispered by licensed operators. It was however such a successful demonstration of the safety features that I offer this anecdotal evidence. You see the fields around the reactors, in those fields were milk cows. The milk cows were intensely monitored and yet supplied Hershey Chocolate all through and after the incident. Say What????
    The article is expressing interest in why the Western Civilization is so dead set against Nuclear energy.
    I don’t think that any one has touched on this and it is my perspective and like any theory it is only as good as it’s skill in prediction I doubt that there is any way that we will ever get a peek into the black box that contains the actual smoking gun. Science is like that, if the theory works it has value.
    Dwight Eisenhower entered into a nuclear arms race with the Russians, The US had to build as many Nuclear Weapons as possible. The Russians had to build as many as possible. The most efficient source of weapons grade uranium is from spent nuclear fuel. If you want to understand painful understand the centrifugal approach to enrichment from Yellow Cake. The epiphany was to enlist the national utilities to build massive nuclear power plants. The promise to the utilities was to take the spent fuel reprocess it ( take the weapons grade material out) and return new fuel back to the utilities. Free fuel!!!! What about that was not to like? The Program was so successful that it was burying the Russian effort. They didn’t have a prayer against the US nuke machine.
    If you were a student of American political history you would know that the first really effective foreign meddling in US politics manifested itself in the Hamilton Adams election. Jimmy Carter was “worried about” nuclear proliferation. Reprocessing fuel is the best source of weapons grade uranium soooooo For some reason he decided to set the “world example” and stop the reprocessing of the spent fuel in the US. He also put people in the NRC that hated the nuclear power industry and made life absolutely miserable. I have some personal experiences with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and low level transportation casks that still make me shake my head. WOOPS! Bankrupt utilities little old ladies pensions, because the government no longer accepted the spent fuel and reneged on the balance of the inducements. All of the anti nuke stuff was from the greens. You don’t think that Jane Fonda just materialized in Hanoi and did the processor to “Inconvenient Truth”with her “China Syndrome” by fortuitous accident. If they can shut down the supply you can shut down the production. There is more than one way to skin the cat. The Russians in my opinion were astute.
    The facts were that the premise of the movie was completely ridiculous, but it did its job. I supplied equipment to the LOFT facility in Idaho. They were removing the cooling fluid fluid to see what would happen in such an accident. Any one with a basic understanding of the nuclear reaction would quickly realize that the water is the moderator and when the water boils the moderator doesn’t exist and the neutrons sped up and miss the atoms so the reaction slows down. It gets hot. and starts to melt the fuel rods and incorporates the boron carbide and stainless steel into a molten blob. The blob, because it incorporates additional material which reduces the concentration of the uranium the reaction essentially stays hot but goes no where, it is contained.
    The problem then for simplicity becomes two fold, how to keep the dissociated water that separated into hydrogen and oxygen from exploding and how to keep the exposed reaction products in the containment. The containment is a 5 psi pressure vessel. The back up generators run massive fans and water heat exchangers that take the steam and cool it of by putting it through heat exchangers and through the water in the containment. This process cools the core steam and reduces the pressure so it doesn’t crack the containment. This happened beautifully at TMI. I built the Loss of Fluid Accident Turbines for Spencer Turbine.
    In Japan they lost the back up generators. The gases exploded. Never the less life goes on. People will be back in time, just like they will be back in the area around Chernobyl.
    So lets look at North Korea do you really think that they took Jimmy Carter seriously? Pakistan had to be laughing. India? Israel? Objective evidence after 40 years suggest it only effected our economy. Fankly it was a fools decision. Did any of the communist countries evoke protests from the US protesters as they continued their programs? it is ok for Canada and France to have nukes but not the US?The distinction only has skill in the context of of the now less significant legacy effort designed to stop the production of weapons grade uranium.
    The Russians get it. Their approach to Iran’s nuclear power fascination was… knock yourself out but to prevent your making bombs return the spent fuel to us!
    So in the end the progressives ultimately did the job for the Russians in the Western countries to stop large scale weapons grade uranium production particularly in the US. The distaste for nukes is the residual effect of a very successful PR campaign that outlived it’s master. This is too short a discussion to appropriately point out strategic laws in the plan to build multiple huge one off generating stations on grids that had to replace the power during scheduled and unscheduled shut downs. Flaws in the quality assurance system. and so on. Every misrepresentation to be robust has to include some demonstrable truth.
    Right now the US supply of new fuel or reactors is horrifically expensive and less than required to refuel the industry and there is 100 years of reprocessable spent fuel for reactors sitting in spent fuel pools at bankrupt facilities all over the US. This fiasco was caused by the Government under Carter run by the progressives and the rate payers are still picking up the bill.
    Politically no one wants to admit that the spent fuel storage problem would go away at low cost if the fuel was reprocessed. Reprocessing is by political definition an untouchable not to be considered alternative. The nasty product could be burned safely in breeder reactors. So yes go figure! But be advised that it will be a long haul to reverse a very effective slander..
    I see huge similarities with the CO2 scam. But it is only that is so sad for what should have been the next generation of inexpensive energy for increasing the quality of life for humanity.
    Only my opinion….

    • Every misrepresentation to be robust has to include some demonstrable truth.

      Thanks for sharing that post. It was educational. I especially liked the observation above.
      What do you think it would take for the public to accept nuclear energy in America ?

      • (v. a v. the U.S.A., mainly)
        1. Get Congress to open the Yucca Mountain waste storage facility and deregulate the nuclear power industry and take other necessary measures so that it can become profitable to enter the market again.
        2. Nuclear power industry unbound will then will have the cash flow to fund first-class TV/internet documentary/advertisements educating the public about such things as:
        1) truth about how safe storage of waste is;
        2) truth about nuclear power plant safety;
        3) truth about nuclear power safety in general (e.g., no one harmed by radiation by Fukushima)
        4) truth about how lower-cost, highly reliable, nuclear power will bring JOBS to their town (e.g., Boeing plant in South Carolina)
        5) truth about lower electricity bills (for some parts of U.S.) if nuclear power comes.
        6) truth about nuclear power lowering average consumer’s electricity bills
        7) truth about how nuclear power makes a country more secure from energy-blackmail by terrorist nations or communists…
        In other words: pray that God works a miracle!

      • If we started reprocessing the “waste”, there would be very little need for a long term storage facility.

      • Yes, MarkW (6:44am) — great point! That (allowing reprocessing in the U.S. — it is done in Europe) would be part of the “de-regulation” of the U.S. nuclear power industry which needs to happen — now! 🙂
        Also, thanks for pointing out what I DID miss, indeed, in “Dr.” Reddy’s screed about “fusion” nuclear power, lol.

    • I’ll never understand why “The China Syndrome” was considered such an anti-nuke power movie. At the end, the worst case accident did happen and … the plant automatically shut down. No meltdown, no loss of life. Just a big clean-up hassle.

  44. My apologies for misinterpreting the article, I’d thought the nuclear opposition being highlighted was focused on India and tried to give some reasons why the locals there might oppose nuclear plants in their neighborhood, which they have done. I have no argument that there is plenty of space for nuclear plants in the US or that a nuclear plant is more compact than a comparable fossil or solar facility.
    Beyond that though, halftiderock’s assessment that honesty is what is essential to get public acceptance of nuclear in the US is spot on. Honesty is indeed the essential ingredient in any sustainable effort, whether diesel engines from VW or nuclear power generation.
    Sadly it has always been in very short supply in nuclear, unsurprising as the industry has been a creature of government from its inception. Governments are always in thrall to spin doctors whose job is to make it look good rather than telling the truth. The result is deep public mistrust, a disbelief that the nuclear industry has the ability to manage its affairs honestly.
    That distrust deepens with every nuclear accident, because the cause is almost always sloppy work, something that is inherent in human activity, but very embarrassing to admit. Fukushima is really an exception, because the disaster was not caused by humans. The more recent WIPP accident is much more representative: Los Alamos dumping inappropriate waste at WIPP and packing the waste drums using kitty litter to absorb nitric acid rather than inert diatomaceous earth, the WIPP management wiring the automatic fire doors open because they were a maintenance headache and then the non disclosure of emissions for weeks after the accident. That does not build trust in the management of nuclear sites. Public acceptance is correspondingly low.

    • There is no need to apologize, etudiant. Your arguments were on topic, generally speaking. Even though the article was focused on Western opposition to nuclear power and Indian acceptance of it, pointing out potential problems with Indian nuclear power was relevant and worthwhile. And we misunderstood you (partly due to your slightly vague writing, partly due to our assuming you were talking about nuclear power in general, not in India specifically) — to a point.
      However… several of your assertions are, even so, not strong enough reasons for Indians to reject nuclear power for themselves:
      From your comment here:

      … space and cooling water, … comes at the expense of the local community…

      Yes, but, this is not a fatal objection to building the nuclear power plants. The community benefits from having reliable, relatively inexpensive, power, and there are also many jobs in constructing and maintaining it (and also in any factories or other business enterprises which open up due to the power plant). Cost > or = benefit.

      … corruption ensures the locals see little or nothing of any proposed compensation…

      What “compensation” are you referring to? If it is the Indian equivalent to the U.S. Constitution’s 5th Am.’s “just compensation” for a “taking” of private property for public use, it may, indeed, not be fairly done in India, but they STILL get a net benefit from the power supply.

      … the plant is all downside economically …

      Please see above.

      … nuclear fears. … Opposition to nuclear is consequently quite rational …

      No, while the fear makes the opposition a rational response, the fears themselves, based in misinformation, are not rational, thus, the response is, ultimately, NOT rational. It is irrational fear, based on ignorance of the truth about the safety of nuclear power plants and waste storage.

      … until nuclear plants become desirable neighbors to have.

      What makes a nuclear plant an undesirable neighbor more than any moderately noisy industrial plant? Why do you assume anyone would be living right next door to one? And why do you assume that many people would be living close enough to be bothered by lights/noise of plant? The plants can be located reasonably far from highly populated areas, can they not?
      So! Here’s to a brand new year! …. to lucid writing and to TRUTH banishing all irrational fear … and to nuclear power bringing prosperity throughout the immense and grand country of India!

      • Having a nuclear power plant as your neighbor generally insures you get high quality electrical services from the grid. Which in the developing world is not a guarantee and makes siting many industrial and business operations near a nuke advantageous. And, if you like your AC on in the summer, a good place to live.

      • My biggest issue with the original article was that every single one of his “complaints” applied equally to every other form of energy generation. But it was only nuclear that he opposed.

      • Yes, J!
        And MarkW, good point — I failed to mention that WINDMILL FARMS are HORRIBLE neighbors to have (noise and uuuugggllyyy).

      • All good points, Janet. It should be noted that water requirements vary. Nuclear plants do not use up water. They bring it into the plant for steam condensation and then release it again, with the only change being that it’s slightly warmed up. The amount of water required can be greatly diminished by use of closed circuit cooling.
        As to being neighbours, it’s a curious fact that at least in Canada, nuclear plants have their greatest support among their immediate neighbours. This poses some problem for green protesters who then have to find their rent-a-mobs from out of community.

  45. The anti-nuclear stance is surprising. On Capitol Hill in DC, the Nuclear lobby has been a powerful voice for a ‘price for carbon’. I would conjecture they alone, thru better organization, politics, and funding, sustained the AGW movement during the Bush years. Only to be pushed aside in the end game.
    Of course, in the end, all the fellow travelers get the knife.

  46. This is what I tell people who take the AGW position: If you don’t like fossil fuels your choices are nuclear power or poverty.

  47. What part of Fukushima do you not understand? We need to end all nuclear power. As long as the risk is non zero the risk is too great.

    • So, you are arguing that we should only do those things that have ZERO risk?
      Well that eliminates everything, since there is nothing that has ZERO risk.
      Nobody died at Fukushima, and if you had actually bothered to read something other than the pamphlets your handler gave you, you would have found out the problems post Fukushima were not that big and entirely contained.
      Beyond that, it was an old plant that used an old design that isn’t being built anymore.

      • To be rigorously correct, three people died at Fukushima. One was in a construction crane when the earthquake hit. Two were in the plant yard when the tsunami came over the seawall. These of course could have happened at any power plant regardless of fuel type. But you are correct in saying that fatalities from radiation exposure were zero.

    • What power generation industry is zero (or even close to it) risk? Nuclear power is one of the LOWEST risk-to-worker and to the general public power sources. Didn’t you read the comment about about the thousands of Chinese who have died mining coal? Did you not read the many highly-informed comments above citing safety statistics? You obviously did not bother to read the comments above OR you are so brainwashed you argue like simple-intelligence robo-call software — (“I’m sorry. I did not recognize that. Can you tell me how I can help you? You can choose: Billing…. Technical Support….”…… “Sorry. …. You can choose: Billing….. Technical Support….”) — against what you irrationally fear in the face of powerful facts arguments to the contrary.
      Lol, you cite Fukushima when its benign impact (radiation – wise) is evidence FOR using nuclear power.

      • There are many well informed people on this forum and I bet someone can provide a quantitative support for one or another side of the argument by comparing risk factors defined, for example, as number of deaths directly related to the accidents at the power plants divided by the total energy produced divided by the total time in exploitation. Those will be interesting numbers to compare; however, I bet that nuclear power will look not so attractive.
        On the issue of “irrational fear”, such thing doesn’t exist. One always has reasons to fear; hence, it is rational. The intensity of fear seemingly depends on what kind of consequence feared phenomenon can produce. Let’s say a nurse working in a hospital has much higher chance to catch pneumonia and die of it than get infected with HIV. However, I bet, if you ask the nurse will fear HIV more. Radiation is known to produce horrible effects and it is feared correspondingly. Calling this fear irrational is lack of compassion.
        Also, different people have different thresholds for fear. I would say that, the fear threshold is relatively lower for those who are white and older, or of proletariat origin, or single and never being married, or didn’t have children, or poorly educated, or exhibit cavalier attitude, or have any combination of the above qualities. For those who have a lot to lose the fear threshold is relatively higher and can be beyond rational grasp to those with low fear threshold.

        • Juicy topic.
          There are many “I slept at a Holiday Inn” recommendations for how to deal with cognitive dissonance (CD).
          Any recommendation that actually works is worth listening to. Compassion ? Sure, it’s part of the mix. So is reflecting a reality rooted in fact back to the person trapped in a CD pattern.
          It’s awfully hard work for us humans. So hard that Dante’s Inferno places the abusers of man’s propensity to be fooled in the worst spots of the place called Hell.
          After the facts are lined up and validated, the heavy lift of readjusting those fears can take far longer. Grouping confounds the problem rather than lift the fog because the desire to belong is deeply rooted in us primates.
          It’s a wonder that we seem to rise above these pitfalls and it appears we most often do when faced with truly urgent situations.
          We are a fascinating species.

      • Walt The Physicist:
        I have been doing some study on the issue of nuclear safety, specifically deaths caused by nuclear power reactors. I don’t have my data handy at the moment but several things are clear: (1) total deaths known to be caused by nuclear power, including military reactors, is quite small. (2) the vast majority of the deaths charged to major reactor accidents are estimated by models and I don’t believe any rigorous followup has been conducted to validate those estimates. (3) a surprising number of radiation deaths have been caused by radiotherapy accidents and mismanagement, rather than power reactors. (4) the vast majority of reactor deaths are directly attributed to poor design, inadequate procedures, incompetent management and operator error. And almost all occurred in the Soviet Union.
        The figures I have are certainly incomplete: there is no data for China, N. Korea, and other nations engaged in secret nuclear programs, so the actual deaths from reactor accidents would be somewhat higher. But from all the reported data the confirmed deaths number a little above 200. There is enormous variation in estimated “excess” deaths that might be attributed to nuclear power:

        Estimates of the total number of deaths potentially resulting from the Chernobyl disaster vary enormously: Thirty one deaths are directly attributed to the accident, all among the reactor staff and emergency workers.[4] A UNSCEAR report places the total confirmed deaths from radiation at 64 as of 2008. The World Health Organization (WHO) suggests it could reach 4,000 civilian deaths, a figure which does not include military clean-up worker casualties.[5] A 2006 report predicted 30,000 to 60,000 cancer deaths as a result of Chernobyl fallout.[6] A Greenpeace report puts this figure at 200,000 or more.[7] A disputed Russian publication, Chernobyl, concludes that 985,000 premature cancer deaths occurred worldwide between 1986 and 2004 as a result of radioactive contamination from Chernobyl.[8]

        Full article is here.
        I have no idea how to treat excess attributed death estimates over such a wide range. But if we stick with known deaths (and I would include people killed responding to a nuclear accident, even if not caused by radiation), the number is quite small. Consider in the US every year there are 20-40 coal miner fatalities. Since the advent of nuclear power in the US (1958) through 2014 there have been 6,700 coal miner deaths against a handful of reactor fatalities. See here.
        In contrast, in the early days of high-pressure steam engines, there were many boiler explosions which killed 100 or more people at a time. The worst one known happened in 1865 when the Sultana, badly overloaded with returning Union soldiers, suffered a dry boiler explosion and sank. Killed were an estimated 1,700 people (the number is estimated due to poor records and an official coverup, not because there weren’t actual bodies) — a worse disaster than the Titanic nearly 60 years later but involving no rich or famous people. If you consider the growth in world population since 1865, an equivalent disaster today would claim 8,500 lives.
        And to really put this in perspective: you are far more likely to die from a texting driver than a reactor accident:

        In 2013, 3,154 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes involv­ing distracted drivers. This represents a 6.7 percent decrease in the number of fatalities recorded in 2012. Unfortunately, approximately 424,000 people were injured, which is an increase from the 421,000 people who were injured in 2012.


        10% of drivers of all ages under the age of 20 involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crash. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted.

        (source: here).
        Now it must be admitted that nuclear accidents are hugely expensive to clean up, even when the loss of life is small.

        • Excellent research Alan.
          I bookmarked it.
          Suggest comparing cost of cleanup to net economic benefit of the plant.
          The biggest point of contention is not immediate death due to the accident or rad exposure but the long term health effects esp concerning Chernobyl.
          If the nuke industry wants to accelerate acceptance of the technology, it would benefit from a more rigorous evaluation of the data concerning that event.
          The unknown of the known allows the boogeyman to live under the bed.

      • Walt the P.,
        By your definition of “irrational,” nothing can be irrational, i.e., your assertion is meaningless. The Precautionary Fallacy, attractive only to those whose reason is overwhelmed by imagination, is a reason to do or not to do ANYTHING. It is a useless concept.
        Psychiatry would call such fears: “phobias.” They are considered unhealthy and are NOT based in truth and are persisted in despite powerful facts and arguments to the contrary.
        Just — like — your — fear — of — nuclear power.
        Brave people act in spite of their irrational fears, e.g., those with a phobia of flying who grit their teeth and get on that plane anyway. Cowards yell at everyone else to stay indoors and …. not take showers (heh).
        I am sorry that you have a phobia about nuclear power, if that is, indeed the case, Mr. P.. Education (just re-read this thread, with an open mind, for one source) and, perhaps, cognitive therapy (not a thing to be ashamed of!), might help.
        Best wishes in conquering fear and living a life of joy!
        P.S. Recommended movie: “The Truman Show.” In it a man (played by Jim Carrey) with a terrible phobia overcomes it in the end and escapes into reality and truth. I would say more, but it would spoil the suspense. I’ll just say this: YOU CAN GET OUT OF FEAR, TOO!!
        Do try. You are worth it!

        • Ah, the things us humans do. Have an old pal who dated a woman with a tattoo of maneater on her inner lower lip. Her two prior lovers mysteriously disappeared.
          Meanwhile, his day job was an actuary for a well known insurance firm.
          Go figure.

      • Walt, all of this work has been done for many years by the Paul Scherrer Institut. Their work shows that based on actual performance of energy systems over the past 100 years that nuclear is by far the safest way to generate electricity per unit of energy produced.

    • As long as the risk is non zero the risk is too great.
      The Precautionary Principle in spades. If we applied that to any power source, we’d all be frozen to death.

    • The lesson there is that if you are going to build a nuclear plant in an area prone to earthquakes, you probably shouldn’t put it close to the sea where it may be exposed to a resulting tsunami. And if you must put it close to the sea, then your backup generators need to be tsunami-proof. Common sense stuff.

      • No, the proper conclusion is that you build a plant to withstand expected local conditions. There were repeated studies over the years showing that Daiichi had a seawall insufficiently high. These were ignored because the plant was at the end of its useful life. Unit 1 was in its last fuel operating cycle and was tot be permanently shutdown about 8 months subsequent to when the earthquake intervened. It should be noted that the Fukushima Daiini plant rode out the earthquake and tsunami just fine even though it was a mere 11 km away from Daiichi.

      • knutesea, generally I agree. However, Japan is a special case. Much of the country contains active seismic zones. So, you have to build to meet local circumstances. There’s no mystery to how to do this. It should also be remembered that Fukushima 2011 was the world’s largest earthquake and tsunami in recorded history by about an order of magnitude in terms of energy release. Despite that, all the plants rode through the earthquake reasonably well. It was the tsunami which was the killer.
        And even that wouldn’t have been a problem if the backup generators weren’t in the basement, and the fuel tanks were out unbunkered in the plant yard. It also would not have been a problem, even with all these deficiencies, if like all modern plants, Fukushima Daiichi had hydrogen igniters. The situation could still have been remedied if they had vented the hydrogen gas buildup, but plant crews were slow to understand the problem, and the regulatory authorities were even slower to grant permission.

        • Thanks for the response. The slow to act decision making during an emergency needs to be fixed if they want public approval. While not a nuke plant, I’ve been following Enbridge’s efforts concerning streamlined decision making during emergency action plans for the proposed Northern Gateway. One could easily learn alot from the other.

      • knutesea, the issue of training and emergency response requires properly a very long and detailed answer, which is prohibitive in a post response. What I can say is that both were in very short supply in the specific situation of F Daiichi. A lot of this was not TEPCO only but very large failures on the part of both the Japanese government and the regulator.
        Enbridge has begun to institute these things after some difficulties with an oil pipeline rupture last year. However, Northern Gateway is dead. One of the first actions of the new Trudeau government late last year was to ban all tanker traffic from northern British Columbia coastal waters.

        • Does Japan have a similar system ?

          Is there a worldwide standard for such a thing ?
          Pity about the Gateway. I expected more from the Tundra people. Rather surprising how a primarily level headed culture elects such misguided leadership. Nevertheless, the pipeline will eventually have its day and the good work that Enbridge rolled out won’t go to waste. The oil has to get to market somehow.

  48. I think I have an idea. Maybe someone needs to suggest it to the greens. I don’t know any, so I can’t.
    Instead of carbon caps, we should initiate worldwide KILOWATT caps. And mandate a reduction in kilowatts produced to, say, 50% of the current level by 2025.
    I think many of them would go for it. And I would love to see the reaction.

  49. My first commercial job after getting out of the US Navy was in the control room during commissioning at the nuke plant pictured above. The reason the plant was built was that power was needed. A third unit is planned for the Susquehanna site. I do not think it will get built until the shale gas boom is played out in Pennsylvania.
    India needs power. If climate change is a consideration, it is at the bottom of the list of considerations.

    • We’ve got three new reactors coming online in the next 5 years in my neck of the woods. Quite frankly, looking at the population and economic growth in Georgia, we probably should be looking for siting for 3 or 4 more, build some nice Gen 3+ reactors and have plenty of baseload power to spare.

      • Three? I only know of two new at Plant Votgle. Where is there a third new reactor being built?

        • Lots of history there. Would make a great case study for how community acceptance was arrived at, including the upriver relationship that Oak Ridge has with the surrounding area.

      • cgh:
        Thanks, I had read the two new Plant Vogtle reactors were the first new licenses issued in I think 30 years (since Three Mile Island), so I was surprised to hear there was a third under construction. I see now construction on Watts Bar # 2 started over 20 years ago, was halted in 1998 and only resumed in 2007.

      • That’s right, Alan. Watt’s Bar 2 got its operating licence back on October 22. It had been suspended since 1985 when it was 55% complete. TVA did announce last month that it will not be proceeding with the two Bellefont units that were similarly suspended for about two decades. Too much of their inventoried eqjuipment was either in bad shape, used elsewhere, or no longer met regulatory standards.

      • @cgh, 3.56 pm Jan 8
        :Watt’s Bar 2 got its operating licence back on October 22. It had been suspended since 1985 when it was 55% complete. TVA did announce last month that it will not be proceeding with the two Bellefont units that were similarly suspended for about two decades. Too much of their inventoried equipment was either in bad shape, used elsewhere, or no longer met regulatory standards.
        Thanks for that info, to me it shows there are great regs in place that are needed. In some industries they’d just open the doors sweep away the garbage and continue.. We need nuclear but as you showed it needs to be done right!

  50. “I have a particular soft spot for the Grand Coulee Gravitational Energy reactor myself, and also the Bonneville one on the Columbia River in Oregon.”
    Pop quiz George! What happens to water when it get really cold? Hydro does a really good job of making electricity of mild spring days when the snow pack melts and power when it is needed the least. The PNW needs coal, gas, and nuke plants to keep the lights on 24/7/365.
    Worked at Washington State’s commercial nuke too.

  51. @etudiant
    Just so you know, the foot print of a 1000 MWe nuke plant is about the same as a Walmart. Cooling water systems are the same as for any steam plant.
    Nuke plant have a well paid workforce and pay lots of taxes. Communities with nuke plants are happy to have them.

  52. To Alan Watt at 1:58pm:
    Thanks, it make sense. However, you say “(4) the vast majority of reactor deaths are directly attributed to poor design, inadequate procedures, incompetent management and operator error. And almost all occurred in the Soviet Union.” And I think that this is exactly the danger that , if the technology will be handed to low tech and non-democratic societies, they will create huge problems for us, much bigger and more serious than USSR created for Europe with Chernobyl. Now, of course, we are not obliged to share or proliferate the technology. But then the government should ban private companies from doing their business – socialism!!!: (. And even then, when we all say “heck with this freedom, let gov take full control”, even then all these countries will be super motivated to start nuclear power race, as it happened in a little different setting with the Soviets who lost their pants but built powerful nuclear industry. Now, what is wrong with using coal and oil and make it cleaner, as it is already super clean? Especially as majority of rational people would agree that all this AGW is just nonsense of unscrupulous people who chase fame and money (like Jagadish Shukla). I think we better stick to coal, gas. Hopefully, after these billions of $$ spent, Livermore will find a way to achive feasible fusion and then we will have unlimited and super safe energy… in the next century 🙂

    • More utter silliness. Reactors built offshore are built to meet the regulatory standards of the supplier nation. They are also built to meet IAEA standards and requirements, so your comment about “low tech and non-democratic societies” is wrong, stupid and probably racist.
      Moreover, Livermore may indeed be working on fusion, but this has little or nothing to do with energy production, certainly not from a laser array. Maybe you’d best stick to something you know about rather than flying the false colours of claiming to be a physicist.

      • Actually it is neither stupid nor racist nor islamophobic but just factual. Or maybe you are not considering that Somalia might want to build own reactor if you have one in your white class neighborhood? I choose to ignore your last sentence showing your low class and anger.

    • Walt The Physicist:
      From my current understanding of nuclear reactors, I definitely agree they are not the preferred solution for every country. It takes a nation with a stable government, a fair degree of transparency and a broad technical infrastructure to operate and maintain them to acceptable safety standards.
      Which means that even with a major expansion on nuclear power we can’t eliminate fossil fuels; they must continue to be the primary energy source for less developed nations, as well as power most transportation systems.
      Thus the carbon reduction targets from COP21 are pure fantasy.

    • Walt, there are just a few countries that can even build , let alone operate a nuclear facility, if you believe a few guys with ak 47’s and a pick-up truck can run one or remove so called “weapon” grade materials for their use is totally ludicrous, What planet are you from? Please look in a mirror and decide you are a troll.

  53. To cgh 3:14 pm
    Thanks, would you have a reference, please? In any case, I wouldn’t trust blindly the research done at PSI or Kurchatov Institute of Atomic Energy or LANL. Same as I wouldn’t blindly trust NASA on global warming. Information is available and independent people, groups or organizations can assess relative safety. Who will pay them though?…

  54. Angela Merkel is a physicist by training. So is her husband. Merkel was one of the biggest boosters of nuclear energy production in Europe until Fukushima happened. It’s absurd to dismiss her as a crazy green zealot. This was one judgment call she was and is much more competent to make than perhaps any other leader of a major world power, and it took courage.
    I don’t know what the reasoning behind her decision was, but I would guess that it went something like this. If the Japanese can’t safely contain nuclear power production, it’s likely that Germans can’t either, at least not at our present state knowledge and political organization (because, after all, it’s impossible to keep the administrators and politicians from getting their fingers into the works and frustrating all attempts at due caution and adequate fail-safe mechanisms).
    The bottom line is that Fukushima demonstrated conclusively that in the hands of even the most technically advanced societies, nuclear power is not safe. And the irrefutable fact is that we don’t know what the consequences for not only humanity, but all higher life forms on earth, could be if a hundred nuclear reactors around the world blew up. It’s madness to start a process that could be massively destructive and that you cannot reliably stop.
    What does any of that have to do with being “green”? If a “green” group says it’s nuts to build a toxic waste site in the middle of a residential community, is that proof that that’s exactly where it needs to go? Often, reading this forum, one can get the impression that such is the level of logic here.

    • How many people were harmed by radiation exposure from the Fukushima incident?
      Your guess GROSSLY mischaracterizes Chancellor Merkel. She is a bright, well-educated, highly rational, scientist. She is also a politician. What she does in her political role might easily be at times at odds with what she would say about nuclear power and Fukushima in particular, privately. No informed, rational, person would say:
      “the Japanese can’t safely contain nuclear power production.”
      The facts say otherwise.
      Either you did not read the comments above yours on this thread
      you are a hustler for one of nuclear power’s competitors.
      Given your laughably inaccurate mischaracterization of the pro-nuclear power comments on this thread, I strongly suspect the latter.
      Bottom line, Otro the Disingenuous: get real (as in deal in facts) or get lost.

      • Janice Moore
        January 8, 2016 at 7:00 pm said
        “How many people were harmed by radiation exposure from the Fukushima incident?
        I think you need to expand your reading horizons.
        ““the Japanese can’t safely contain nuclear power production.”
        The facts say otherwise.”
        I haven’t come across these facts. The reports and documentaries I’ve read indicate that a very large number of people have had to leave their homes forever, and considerable high quality farmland has been contaminated for a long time to come. And most of all – the Japanese were very lucky in the way things turned out.
        “Either you did not read the comments above yours on this thread
        you are a hustler for one of nuclear power’s competitors.
        Given your laughably inaccurate mischaracterization of the pro-nuclear power comments on this thread, I strongly suspect the latter.”
        None of us is perfect, and I confess that I’ve never mastered the mysterious skill of speed reading, and so have not and probably will never read all of the previous posts on any of the topics discussed here.
        But I’m astonished at your suspicion. Surely a quick web search would be enough to convince any reasonable person that otropogo isn’t any kind of hustler.
        “Bottom line, Otro the Disingenuous: get real (as in deal in facts) or get lost.”
        Name calling and the bum’s rush – now that’s hurtful

    • Nuclear power is safe, it’s just not absolutely safe. Nothing which produces energy is. In the early days of steam power many more people were killed by boiler explosions and other accidents than have died since the advent of nuclear power. It took a while to develop better metallurgy, better controls and appropriate regulation. Meanwhile we continued building imperfect steam engines and burying the casualties.
      Hardwood has roughly twice the energy density of softwood. Coal has roughly twice the energy density of hardwood. Oil has roughly twice the energy density of coal. Since we began burning fuel to power heat engines and free ourselves from the limits of muscle power, we have managed roughly an eightfold increase in energy density by shifting to new fuels.
      Nuclear fuel has four million times the energy density of coal. Risk: significant; reward: enormous. Unless there is something better on the horizon, I don’t see how we can walk away from the reward.
      If our technical civilization advances, we will use more energy per capita in the future. And if the benefits of technical civilization are made available to more the world’s population, the total energy demand will rise even faster. Wind turbines most definitely can’t keep up; PV solar shows little promise of keeping up. Hydro is terrain limited and can’t be expanded indefinitely.
      We can definitely pump more oil, mine more coal and frack more natural gas. But for how long?
      If you don’t like fossil fuels, you either embrace nuclear or accept poverty.

      • Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
        January 8, 2016 at 7:25 pm
        Nuclear power is safe, it’s just not absolutely safe. Nothing which produces energy is. In the early days of steam power many more people were killed by boiler explosions and other accidents than have died since the advent of nuclear power…..
        Nuclear fuel has four million times the energy density of coal. Risk: significant; reward: enormous. Unless there is something better on the horizon, I don’t see how we can walk away from the reward.”
        None of the other fuel sources we have entail a risk of making our environment uninhabitable. It’s madness to risk what one can’t afford to lose. There’s no need to “walk away” from nuclear power. I’d love to have a perfectly safe little nuclear reactor in my home and my vehicles. But birth control seems a more reasonable way to deal with the coming energy shortage than unleashing a flood of ticking nuclear time bombs on the planet.
        We don’t actually know how many people may have been killed by nuclear power to date. There’s never been any transparency on that topic. The Kyshtym explosion and contamination in the southern Urals was denied by Soviet and Western officials alike when it was first publicized, and is still waiting to be clarified, Hanford is a continuing mess, so is Chernobyl, and what’s the latest hope on safe disposal of spent nuclear fuel?
        We don’t even know how to clean up the nuclear waste issues we already have in the developed world. What sort of messes can we expect in the developing world?

    • Ogo:
      Your comment is such a gross mischaracterization of Ms. Merke1’s knowledge and ability to think rationally and also of the comments on this thread, not to mention laughably inaccurate, that it is obvious you are merely a hu$tler for some power industry in direct competition with nuclear power. Thus, the following is not for you. It is selected facts about nuclear power from the comments above …

      … only 75 people have died world wide in nuclear reactor accidents since the 1950s, about half that in Chernobyl (not the 25,000 that was being barked by the UN and others) and this was a Soviet no frills plant without redundancies and safety infrastructure built before the existence of super computer controls and safety. Only one(!!!) had died in France, the most nuked power country in the world and this may have been a forklift accident in a spent rod plant.

      … article above lists the the number of deaths from fossil fuel-related accidents (among other causes) gobally going all the way back to 1962. The last time I added up all the deaths from natural gas and other fossil fuel accidents (which was some years ago) I believe I came up with a number that was in the 10’s of thousands.
      *** It never ceases to amaze me how nuclear energy gets bashed and bashed again by individuals because of Chernobyl, Three Mile Island and Fukushima without these individuals having done their homework and having made themselves aware of how many have died around the world from fossil fuel-related accidents over the decades.

      … three people died at Fukushima. One was in a construction crane when the earthquake hit. Two were in the plant yard when the tsunami came over the seawall. These of course could have happened at any power plant regardless of fuel type. But you are correct in saying that fatalities from radiation exposure were zero.

      … (1) total deaths known to be caused by nuclear power, including military reactors, is quite small. (2) the vast majority of the deaths charged to major reactor accidents are estimated by models and I don’t believe any rigorous followup has been conducted to validate those estimates. (3) a surprising number of radiation deaths have been caused by radiotherapy accidents and mismanagement, rather than power reactors. (4) the vast majority of reactor deaths are directly attributed to poor design, inadequate procedures, incompetent management and operator error. And almost all occurred in the Soviet Union.
      Bottom line, Ogo: Get honest or get lost.

      • tobias smit
        January 8, 2016 at 11:04 pm
        “otropogo Jan 8, 6.38 pm, you are crazy and an insult to Ogopogo!”
        You’re barking up the wrong swamp tobias.

  55. @ Knutesea, Re Chernobyl / BBC. Go to their site click search enter “Chernobyl it will give you 3-4 programs I am still trying to find the exact one but I think the guy called Peter is the one that did the doc. ( but maybe it was an indy type he sold to BBC I’ll keep on trying), Cheers!

  56. Otropogo still has a point.
    Merkel was trained as a scientist, but she is also a professional politician. She was well aware of the sizeable public opposition to nuclear in Germany, an opposition fueled by the repeated instances of crass incompetence/dishonesty/coverup on part of the German nuclear industry. The incident at the Juelich pebble bed reactor illustrates that mindset.
    The Fukushima disaster could have been enormously worse. If the winds had been onshore rather than out to sea, the heart of Japan would have been contaminated well beyond any internationally accepted levels for some centuries. A similar disaster in Germany would tear the heart out of the country, no matter which way the winds blow.
    It seems to me that this reality is what drove Merkel’s decision, that human error or natural disaster will eventually find a way to screw up even the best designed system. If you can’t face the consequences, you should terminate that approach.

Comments are closed.