(March 13, 2019) — Eight years ago this week, apocalyptic radiation clouds began pouring out of Fukushima. They haven’t stopped.
Nor have the huckster holocaust deniers peddling still more of these monsters of mass destruction. Some even deny the health impacts from Fukushima fallout that’s already more than 100 times greater than Hiroshima and Nagasaki’s.
Many push fake “new generation” reactors already priced out of by renewables. But far more deadly is their demand to operate the old, crumbling reactors that daily grow more dangerous.
Here are some inconvenient truths:
- About 450 reactors now spew huge quantities of waste heat that kill our global weather patterns.
- All daily emit carbon and more during “normal” operations and the mining, milling, and enrichment of radioactive fuel.
- All daily kill millions of marine creatures with hot offal dumped into oceans, lakes, and rivers.
- Many kill birds and bats with tall cooling towers that spew radioactive and chemical pollutants.
- None can safely manage their uber-intense radioactive waste.
- All raise nearby human infant death rates.
- All see human infant death rates drop when they shut.
- All daily risk more partial explosions as at Fermi I (1966) and Three Mile Island 2 (1979), and full ones like Chernobyl 4 (1986) and Fukushima 1, 2, 3 and 4 (2011).
- Many sit on or near active earthquake faults.
- Many are vulnerable to death by tsunami.
- Most are vulnerable to lightning strikes and air attack.
- All are embrittled by decades of constant heat, pressure, and radiation that make them likely to shatter in an accident.
- All are internally cracked to varying degrees.
- Many suffer from “deferred maintenance” left undone by greedy owners.
- Some are visibly crumbling.
- The industry is short of skilled operators.
- Some old reactors operate with pre-digital control systems.
- Overstuffed spent fuel pools endanger us even more than the reactors themselves.
- Most spent fuel casks are thin and many are deteriorated.
- Nowhere are there credible evacuation plans.
- Bankrupt nuclear utilities can’t manage their basic grid, let alone run dying reactors.
- Davis-Besse’s owner blacked out 50 million people in 2003 with unmaintained power lines.
- Diablo Canyon’s owner is under federal criminal probation for killing eight people in a 2010 San Bruno gas explosion caused by its faulty pipes.
- PG&E’s faulty power lines sparked 2017-2018 fires that killed more than 80 people, incinerated more than 10,000 structures, drew $10 billion in lawsuits, and destroyed one of the world’s most precious ecosystems.
- In bankruptcy, it’s now stiffing fire victims it promised to compensate.
- A month ago, it burned down five buildings in San Francisco.
Tax/ratepayer billions are being scammed to support dangerous, decrepit old nukes that can’t compete with wind, solar, batteries, and LED. Their owners don’t want them inspected.
When the next Fukushima blows, they’ll yell that no one will be hurt, the climate won’t be heated, and the oceans will be safe. But today our lives depend on moving those wasted trillions into our vital Solartopian transition.
ALL those Fukushimas-in-waiting must shut NOW.
And never again – like eight years ago this week – can we let exploding nukes destroy our climate, poison our oceans, kill our children, and threaten all life on earth.
Harvey Wasserman’s Green Power & Wellness Show is podcast at prn.fm. California Solartopia is broadcast at KPFK-Pacifica, 90.7 fm, Los Angeles. His Life & Death Spiral of US History: From Deganawidah to Trump to Solartopia will soon be atwww.solartopia.org.
Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News.
* It seems this issue never changes course. Forty years ago I organized people around the Washington Public Power Supply System, or WPPSS (pronounce whoops). All the issues were the same: too expensive, too many hazards, too many health risks, too little oversight, too little benefit, no place for the waste. So much money to be made makes for dumb decisions.
* I’ve been wondering when Fukushima, like a months-old drowning victim, was going to ooze up to the surface of our consciousness again. By the way Three Mile Island also caused a very significant spike in Infant Mortality rates for 6 years after its meltdown. & see: https://phys.org/news/2019-03-fukushima-current-state-clean-up.html
* “Once a form of life reaches a certain level of intelligence, it will destroy itself.” — Enrico Fermi
* Unlike the
many “accidents” that have occurred at various nukes over the
decades, it’s no accident that, as atmospheric CO2 levels rise and the planet
heats up, nukes are now being touted as a “safer” non-carbon-base d alternative
to carbon-based energy production.
I’d value this promise as equal to the value of past promises: zero. Nuclear energy “too cheap to meter” wasn’t, and isn’t. Ditto nuclear energy that was supposed to be “clean” energy that was supposed to be “safe” and immune to the threat of nuclear proliferation. And, over 60 years after the first nuke started up (Shippingport, PA, 1957), we still can’t agree on how to deal with the long-lived radioactive waste.
We need an industrial/climate policy, not only nationwide but worldwide, that will 1) rapidly increase our renewable (wind, solar, and to a lesser extent hydro) energy production, 2) develop much better battery storage to deal with the intermittent nature of these sources, and 3) to rebuild our transmission grids to ship electricity from where it is generated to where it is needed.
That’s the “generate from renewables” piece of the pie. The other two parts are to recycle more and to use less in the first place. Both require more elaboration than I can provide here.
This is a very big deal, will require difficult individual and collective choices, and we don’t have much time, but we can do it. This policy is like democracy; all the alternatives are worse.
(And, from the other side of the debate, something that reads like a White House Tweet.)
* CO2 is not a harmful ‘GAS’ .. Cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki thriving today post being nuked .. also in russia .. all the global warming lying euro’s who are driving this ‘One World Crap’ have NUkes .. Germany and France and most of Europe .. that’s the ONLY solution to your lying .. so you lie sideways you Doomsdayers .. then you LIE about Alternatives .. i drove through Iowa two summers ago hot as hell summer .. all huge wind turbines along I-80 not one of them turning .. not a breath of wind .. waste of time money .. and oh yeah can’t possibly run The Grid ..