Monday, March 30, 2009

In Memory: Nuclear Power Victims

Today is Saturday, 28 March 2009.

On this date in 1979, the Unit 2 reactor of the nuclear power plant at Three Mile Island, Pennsylvania suffered a catastrophic failure and began dispersing radiation into the atmosphere.

The nuclear power industry would have us believe that only 43,000 curies of radiation were discharged, and that the disaster was a model of containment. However, any such figure represents only the amount discharged when the relevant sensors reached the top of their scale and stuck there. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission admits to 10,000,000 curies. Independent studies indicate that some 150,000,000 curies of radiation were released.

The tragic fact is that rates for lung cancer and leukemia were 2 to 10 times higher for those exposed in the radiation plume downwind from Three Mile Island, than for those unexposed upwind. (Peer-reviewed study by Dr. Steven Wing, University of North Carolina, 1997)

The containment domes of most nuclear power reactors were built on the cheap, and neither designed nor constructed to withstand the impact of an airplane. “Who would have ever thunk of that before 9-11?” To accept that rationalization of the nuclear power industry, one must assume that no airplane had ever anywhere struck a human-made structure before 11 September 2009.

Much radioactive waste necessarily and continually created by nuclear power generation is stored on-site under relatively primitive and vulnerable conditions. One can only assume that it is due only to the lack of imagination and/or incompetence of “terrorists” that no storage facility has been compromised.

Yes, the human population requires more energy. Yes, it is folly to acquire it from inherently homicidal and suicidal sources.


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