Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Time to Change the Conversation About Nuclear Power

As I write, yet another nuclear power station in Japan has started having potentially deadly problems. Over 180,000 have evacuated the northern part of the country, fearing nuclear meltdowns. Nature has reminded us yet again that we cannot just build anything that we want, anywhere that we want.

California currently has two nuclear power stations in dangerous areas. One is just south of Los Angeles, the other about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Both are on the coastline. We have just seen that nuclear power stations on the coastline and in earthquake zones might be a bad idea. You would have thought that someone would have considered this when these stations were built.

Over the long term, we need to evaluate where these plants are located. Do they operate in potentially dangerous areas (like the California coast?) If so, we must consider removing them in the long term. No one prepares for earthquakes and tsunamis like Japan and they have come very close to serious disaster.

A full nuclear meltdown would have disastrous effects for hundreds of miles. We must be prepared for the worst.

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