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  1. #16
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    This country needs to support nuclear power. It's absolutely asinine that the country that created the first fission reaction is scared of nuclear power.

    At the rate things are going, we'll be sputtering around with solar and wind while Iran and North Korea will have nuclear power plants.

  2. #17
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Quote Originally Posted by AeroSim View Post
    After all the nuclear problems in Japan, it may be a while before nuclear popularity takes hold again. I project a collapse in new orders and Uranium considering what has happened.
    Yep. Just like the Deepwater Horizon accident put a bad spin on deepwater oil drilling - people in this country will be freaked out by nuclear power for another 20 years.

  3. #18
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Yeah, everyone will be scared of nuclear power once again. We'll lose sight of the fact that these nuke plants may well be toast, but remained safe through what is clearly some of the most devastating forces nature can throw at 'em.

    What I'm finding funny is the clap-trap offered up by the chatter heads on the news over seismic rates that American nukes are designed for in comparison to the Japanese nukes. Hey Cletus, they survived the freakin' earthquakes. Its the tsunami that caused the problems.

    Unless I missed something, the generators went out due to the water waves, not seismic waves.

    Hey, I don't know.

    We can expect the usual solutions... windmills and solar panels.

  4. #19
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    ^^^ And of course, we don't know yet how serious this whole thing is.

  5. #20
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Quote Originally Posted by Dutchcedar View Post
    ^^^ And of course, we don't know yet how serious this whole thing is.
    Yeah, this whole thing is a big to do about nothing. Yeah, radiation has been released and they're (rightfully so) evacuating people and issuing medication. But we haven't seen the "OMG fatal" levels of radiation released like you'd think by watching cable news.

    And you're spot on about the generators. It was a "perfect storm" where the earthquake caused the reactors to scram and then the tsunami damaged/shut off the emergency generator.

  6. #21
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Quote Originally Posted by Dutchcedar View Post
    Yeah, everyone will be scared of nuclear power once again. We'll lose sight of the fact that these nuke plants may well be toast, but remained safe through what is clearly some of the most devastating forces nature can throw at 'em.

    What I'm finding funny is the clap-trap offered up by the chatter heads on the news over seismic rates that American nukes are designed for in comparison to the Japanese nukes. Hey Cletus, they survived the freakin' earthquakes. Its the tsunami that caused the problems.

    Unless I missed something, the generators went out due to the water waves, not seismic waves.

    Hey, I don't know.

    We can expect the usual solutions... windmills and solar panels.
    It's like God laughed at us.

    "Build a nuclear reactor to withstand a 9.0 quake? Ok...I'll follow the 9.0 jab with a tsunami uppercut to the jaw."

    "Silly humans playing with things they think they undertand."

    Message received.

  7. #22
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Quote Originally Posted by Keven View Post
    This country needs to support nuclear power. It's absolutely asinine that the country that created the first fission reaction is scared of nuclear power.

    At the rate things are going, we'll be sputtering around with solar and wind while Iran and North Korea will have nuclear power plants.
    I sort of have to disagree with you.

    The problem with nuclear power are the devastating consequences when things go wrong. Japan is a country that pretty much has their ducks in a row when it comes to this sort of thing, and even they couldnt safe guard against the double whammy they got. After all who could? This is obviously a much different disaster than Chernobyl and 3 mile island. As they were the result of human errors.
    I live 40 miles SW of 3 mile island which is also where I draw my some of my power. Luckily the worst kind of natural disaster we'll see is a blizzard about every several years on average. Therefore, human error would be the most likely cause (no shit lol). And my opinion is that people by and large generally have the tombstone mentality. In other words, people aren't going to concern themselves with safety until something bad happens. And applying that fallacy to nuclear power has definitely produced horrible disasters.
    And even though I'm liberal, I don't buy into the global warming BS, and I think we should invest more efforts towards coal power plants, especially where natural disasters are common.

    I don't think that people are scared of nuclear power. I'm pretty sure that most people appreciate it, and the fact that it is cheap form of electricity.
    I think the real problem is that nobody wants a nuclear power plant in their backyard.
    The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter - Winston Churchill.

  8. #23
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Quote Originally Posted by JustinC939 View Post
    I don't think that people are scared of nuclear power. I'm pretty sure that most people appreciate it, and the fact that it is cheap form of electricity.
    I think the real problem is that nobody wants a nuclear power plant in their backyard.
    They are trying to put a new nuclear plant about 50 miles from my house. I really hope they do honestly. I know everyone is freaked out about Japan now but something like a 9.0 earthquake happening followed by a tsunami is an impossibility in Colorado. The residents near the town where it's going to be built had a meeting last night and are still gung ho on the plant because of the jobs it will bring. They aren't concerned about the safety factor after having looked at all the facts.
    We live in awkward times… too late to vote and too early to start shooting.

  9. #24
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    Post Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Quote Originally Posted by Dutchcedar View Post
    Yeah, everyone will be scared of nuclear power once again. We'll lose sight of the fact that these nuke plants may well be toast, but remained safe through what is clearly some of the most devastating forces nature can throw at 'em.
    Yep, that was my first thought too. "My" gutless, stupid government will also chicken out of the already long overdue nuclear power program and we'll get even more useless ••••••• windmills.

    We'll all have plenty of time to consider that folly when we're freezing our arses off, trying to read by candlelight.

  10. #25
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Quote Originally Posted by kbohip View Post
    They are trying to put a new nuclear plant about 50 miles from my house. I really hope they do honestly. I know everyone is freaked out about Japan now but something like a 9.0 earthquake happening followed by a tsunami is an impossibility in Colorado. The residents near the town where it's going to be built had a meeting last night and are still gung ho on the plant because of the jobs it will bring. They aren't concerned about the safety factor after having looked at all the facts.

    But where do these facts come from?

    I'm sure they'll blow sunshine up everybody's ass and tell everyone about all of the great things they do so that a nuclear meltdown will NEVER EVER HAPPEN.
    And in a perfect world, I'm sure a nuclear meltdown really is impossible. I read that there were no "official" deaths caused by the Three Mile Island" event, but dependent studies have shown a spike in cancer and infant mortality rates. In today's world of bought politicians, rubber stamp organizations, and sound byte media. I'm left to wonder how many unreported nuclear accidents occur. I honestly don't think you can trust in people to do the right thing when big money, and big government is involved. Given the fact that nuclear radiation is mostly undetectable without special equipment and that it takes decades for cancer induced radiation to manifest. Alot of these plants could be off the hook for health problems that they took part in creating.
    People aren't perfect, people will take shortcuts and accidents will happen as with any industry. But the point is that the repercussions of a nuclear disaster are among the worst to be had.

    Who knows what Fukushima will become. Maybe I'm too cynical for my age, but hearing people say that this will never top Chernobyl only leads me to believe that it will.
    Last edited by JustinC939; 03-17-2011 at 06:01 AM.
    The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter - Winston Churchill.

  11. #26
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    There's a long history of cover up in the nuclear industry. The Soviets only admitted there was a problem with Chernobyl when radiation detectors started going off in Finland and Sweden. US spy satellites looking for ICBM launch plumes would have picked up the fire, so it was only a matter of time.

  12. #27
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Some people are stupid....

    From Twitter:

    Friend who works for Japanese car company is now fielding calls from American idiots who think the cars are radioactive. No words, people.

  13. #28
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Ex-Rad, the U.S. Military's Radiation Wonder Drug
    By Van Hipp

    Published March 16, 2011 | FoxNews.com

    These are tragic and tense days indeed in Japan.

    The immense loss of life and absolute devastation caused by last week’s earthquake and tsunami is heartbreaking – and serve as the culprits in this unimaginable tragedy. The tension, felt by its citizens and far beyond the country’s borders, centers most immediately on what happens next at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear facility.

    Reports of radioactive contamination and a potential meltdown at the complex have many Americans wondering how prepared our own government would be in the event something similar occurred here. More specifically, could the the health of residents living near a severely damaged nuclear reactor in the U.S. be ensured?

    Thanks to the advanced work of the men and women who develop our nation’s military medicine, the answer is yes – but only if the government now takes the necessary steps.

    In what has to be one of the greatest accomplishments in the history of military medicine, the U. S. military has developed a radiation protection drug known as Ex-Rad that can give protection through DNA repair against otherwise lethal dosages of radiation. Ex-Rad, which is administered as an injection or orally, can be given either before or after exposure. While Ex-Rad officials are continuing to work with the FDA, it has successfully cleared two clinical studies showing it is safe.

    Ex-Rad’s life-saving utility isn’t limited to countering radiation exposure near a compromised nuclear facility. From potentially enabling cancer patients to withstand greater levels of radiation to protecting soldiers deployed into radioactive “hot zones,” this drug delivers critical help and hope.

    During most of the last decade, U.S. military scientists at the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute have worked with some of the best scientists in the American private sector to develop this radiation protection wonder drug.

    As someone who’s had the privilege to interact with these scientists over the years and watch the development of Ex-Rad, I’ve seen it grow from just a dream into a very real capability that can save lives.

    Unfortunately, due to a lack of media awareness about its development in the U.S., Ex-Rad is probably the most important new drug the American public has never heard of. But thanks to the public writings of senior scientists from the U.S. Department of Defense, the private sector, and the prestigious Radiation Effects Research Foundation (based in Hiroshima, Japan) the secret about this breakthrough drug is finally getting out. And it’s happening not a moment too soon.

    The U.S. Army recently recommended to the Office of the Secretary of Defense that Ex-Rad be stockpiled for the benefit of our military. That puts the ball in the court of Pentagon leadership to make certain one of military medicine’s most successful achievements in recent years is fully realized and able to benefit Americans.

    With our nation facing a litany of threats today, American scientists at government agencies including the Departments of Defense, Energy, Homeland Security, and Health and Human Services among others are developing mature technologies and counter-measures with the potential to save millions of lives. Many of these life-saving discoveries have positive and far-reaching implications well beyond the narrow scope of that particular department. Ex-Rad is just latest example of medical innovation being developed by our military. Although we don't hear about it, we need to hear more and we to support it.

    The challenge for the Obama administration is to ensure that these various efforts are well coordinated and communicated throughout the government – and that the American taxpayers are ultimately provided the return they deserve on their hefty investment.

    There’s something for Congress to keep in mind as well.

    Some on Capitol Hill have questioned the value and relevance of U.S. military medicine in recent weeks. Obviously, these members have forgotten their history lesson on the significant contributions of Dr. Walter Reed and others who helped wipe out disease and save lives. They’ve also forgotten that when the Bush administration sought the creation of a real-time biological defense capability for the American people, it turned to the Pentagon and military medicine.

    There’s no doubt about it, medical results trump political rhetoric every time. Ex-Rad is just the latest evidence that U.S. military medicine is meeting our most difficult medical challenges and leading the way in saving lives.

    Van D. Hipp Jr. is chairman of American Defense International, Inc., a Washington, D.C.-based consulting firm specializing in government affairs, business development and public relations. He is the former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Army.

    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2011/...n-wonder-drug/
    ...

  14. #29
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    The Chernobyl accident

    UNSCEAR's assessments of the radiation effects
    •Summary
    •UNSCEAR assessments
    •Release of radionuclides | Maps
    •Exposure of individuals
    •Health effects
    •Conclusions

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Summary
    The accident at the Chernobyl nuclear reactor that occurred on 26 April 1986 was the most serious accident ever to occur in the nuclear power industry. The reactor was destroyed in the accident and considerable amounts of radioactive material were released to the environment. The accident caused the deaths, within a few weeks, of 30 workers and radiation injuries to over a hundred others. In response, the authorities evacuated, in 1986, about 115,000 people from areas surrounding the reactor and subsequently relocated, after 1986, about 220,000 people from Belarus, the Russian Federation and Ukraine. The accident caused serious social and psychological disruption in the lives of those affected and vast economic losses over the entire region. Large areas of the three countries were contaminated with radioactive materials, and radionuclides from the Chernobyl release were measurable in all countries of the northern hemisphere.

    Among the residents of Belarus, the Russian Federation and Ukraine, there had been up to the year 2005 more than 6,000 cases of thyroid cancer reported in children and adolescents who were exposed at the time of the accident, and more cases can be expected during the next decades. Notwithstanding the influence of enhanced screening regimes, many of those cancers were most likely caused by radiation exposures shortly after the accident. Apart from this increase, there is no evidence of a major public health impact attributable to radiation exposure two decades after the accident. There is no scientific evidence of increases in overall cancer incidence or mortality rates or in rates of non-malignant disorders that could be related to radiation exposure. The incidence of leukaemia in the general population, one of the main concerns owing to the shorter time expected between exposure and its occurrence compared with solid cancers, does not appear to be elevated. Although those most highly exposed individuals are at an increased risk of radiation-associated effects, the great majority of the population is not likely to experience serious health consequences as a result of radiation from the Chernobyl accident. Many other health problems have been noted in the populations that are not related to radiation exposure.

    UNSCEAR assessments
    The Scientific Committee has been involved from early on in the assessment of radiation exposures and health effects from the accident.

    In 1988 it issued its first study of Acute radiation effects in victims of the Chernobyl accident (21 pages), which reviews experience gained in treating the immediate radiation injuries of workers and firefighters who dealt with the initial emergency.

    It also published an account of the accident, and its global fallout and exposures: Exposures from the Chernobyl accident (74 pages). Soon after the accident, the dispersion of radionuclides and the resulting radiation exposures had been measured and evaluated throughout the region. UNSCEAR made use of those data to evaluate the average individual and population doses for various countries and regions, and for the northern hemisphere as a whole.

    In 2000 UNSCEAR issued a more detailed assessment of radiation levels and effects: Exposures and effects of the Chernobyl accident (115 pages). Evaluating the exposures received by the people who had been evacuated or who were still residing in the areas most affected by the accident required much time and effort. The initial measurements were supplemented by information on such matters as the location and diet of the people in each settlement. The accumulation of data on any late health effects also required time.

    In 2001 UNSCEAR also published findings related to possible genetic effects of radiation exposures resulting from the Chernobyl accident (4 pages) .

    From 2003 to 2005 some of the Committee's experts participated in the work of the Chernobyl Forum, whose conclusions essentially concur with those of the UNSCEAR 2000 report. >> Summary report of the Chernobyl Forum

    In 2008, at its 56th session, the Committee approved a document, entitled "Health effects due to radiation from the Chernobyl accident", as a scientific annex (advance copy issued 2011) to its Report to the General Assembly ( A/63/46). The findings are based on more than two decades of experimental and analytical studies of the radiation consequences of the Chernobyl accident for health of the exposed populations and for the environment. The data reviewed, including numerous dosimetric measurements and results of analytical epidemiological studies, allowed a comprehensive evaluation to be made of the human exposure levels and radiation-induced health effects to date.

    In 2010, in accordance with General Assembly resolution 62/9 on the strengthening of international cooperation, the Secretary-General submitted to the General Assembly the report "Optimizing the international effort to study, mitigate and minimize the consequences of the Chernobyl disaster" ( A/65/341).


    Release of radionuclides
    The accident at the Chernobyl reactor happened during an experimental test of the electrical control system as the reactor was being shut down for routine maintenance. The operators, in violation of safety regulations, had switched off important control systems and allowed the reactor, which had design flaws, to reach unstable, low-power conditions. A sudden power surge caused a steam explosion that ruptured the reactor vessel, allowing further violent fuel-steam interactions that destroyed the reactor core and severely damaged the reactor building. Subsequently, an intense graphite fire burned for 10 days. Under those conditions, large releases of radioactive materials took place.

    Contamination maps


    The radioactive gases and particles released in the accident were initially carried by the wind in westerly and northerly directions. On subsequent days, the winds came from all directions. The deposition of radionuclides was governed primarily by precipitation occuring during the passage of the radioactive cloud, leading to a complex and variable exposure pattern throughout the affected region, and to a lesser extent, the rest of Europe.

    Exposure of individuals
    The radionuclides released from the reactor that caused exposure of individuals were mainly iodine-131, caesium-134 and caesium-137. Iodine-131 has a short radioactive half-life (eight days), but it can be transferred to humans relatively rapidly from the air and through consumption of contaminated milk and leafy vegetables. Iodine becomes localized in the thyroid gland. For reasons related to the intake of milk and dairy products by infants and children, as well as the size of their thyroid glands and their metabolism, the radiation doses are usually higher for them than for adults.

    The isotopes of caesium have relatively longer half-lives (caesium-134 has a half-life of 2 years while that of caesium-137 is 30 years). These radionuclides cause longer-term exposures through the ingestion pathway and through external exposure from their deposition on the ground. Many other radionuclides were associated with the accident, which were also considered in the exposure assessments.

    Average effective doses to those persons most affected by the accident were assessed to be about 120 mSv for 530,000 recovery operation workers, 30 mSv for 115,000 evacuated persons and 9 mSv during the first two decades after the accident to those who continued to reside in contaminated areas. (For comparison, the typical dose from a single computed tomography scan is 9 mSv). Maximum individual values of the dose may be an order of magnitude and even more. Outside Belarus, the Russian Federation and Ukraine, other European countries were affected by the accident. Average national doses there were less than 1 mSv in the first year after the accident with progressively decreasing doses in subsequent years. The average dose over a lifetime in distant countries of Europe was estimated to be about 1 mSv. These doses are comparable to an annual dose from natural background radiation (the global average is 2.4 mSv) and are, therefore, of little radiological significance.

    The exposures were much higher for those involved in mitigating the effects of the accident and those who resided nearby. Those exposures are reviewed in great detail in the UNSCEAR assessments.
    part2 VVVV

  15. #30
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    Re: US Domestic Energy / Energy policy

    Health effects

    The Chernobyl accident caused many severe radiation effects almost immediately. Of 600 workers present on the site during the early morning of 26 April 1986, 134 received high doses (0.8-16 Gy) and suffered from radiation sickness. Of these, 28 died in the first three months and another 19 died in 1987-2004 of various causes not necessarily associated with radiation exposure. In addition, according to the UNSCEAR 2008 Report, the majority of the 530,000 registered recovery operation workers received doses of between 0.02 Gy and 0.5 Gy between 1986 and 1990. That cohort is still at potential risk of late consequences such as cancer and other diseases and their health will be followed closely.

    The Chernobyl accident also resulted in widespread radioactive contamination in areas of Belarus, the Russian Federation and Ukraine inhabited by several million people. In addition to causing radiation exposure, the accident caused long-term changes in the lives of the people living in the contaminated districts, since the measures intended to limit radiation doses included resettlement, changes in food supplies and restrictions on the activities of individuals and families. Later on, those changes were accompanied by the major economic, social, and political changes that took place when the former Soviet Union broke up.

    For the last two decades, attention has been focused on investigating the association between exposure caused by radionuclides released in the Chernobyl accident and late effects, in particular thyroid cancer in children. Doses to the thyroid received in the first few months after the accident were particularly high in those who were children and adolescents at the time in Belarus, Ukraine and the most affected Russian regions and drank milk with high levels of radioactive iodine. By 2005, more than 6,000 thyroid cancer cases had been diagnosed in this group, and it is most likely that a large fraction of these thyroid cancers is attributable to radioiodine intake. It is expected that the increase in thyroid cancer incidence due to the Chernobyl accident will continue for many more years, although the long-term increase is difficult to quantify precisely.

    Among Russian recovery operation workers with higher doses there is emerging evidence of some increase in the incidence of leukaemia. However, based on other studies, the annual incidence of radiation-induced leukaemia would be expected to fall within a few decades after exposure. In addition, recent studies of the recovery operation workers indicate that opacities of the eye lens might be caused by relatively low radiation doses.

    Among the 106 patients surviving radiation sickness, complete normalization of health took several years. Many of those patients developed clinically significant radiation-induced cataracts in the first few years after the accident. Over the period 1987-2006, 19 survivors died for various reasons; however, some of these deaths were due to causes not associated with radiation exposure.

    Apart from the dramatic increase in thyroid cancer incidence among those exposed at a young age, and some indication of an increased leukaemia and cataract incidence among the workers, there is no clearly demonstrated increase in the incidence of solid cancers or leukaemia due to radiation in the exposed populations. Neither is there any proof of other non-malignant disorders that are related to ionizing radiation. However, there were widespread psychological reactions to the accident, which were due to fear of the radiation, not to the actual radiation doses.

    There is a tendency to attribute increases in the rates of all cancers over time to the Chernobyl accident, but it should be noted that increases were also observed before the accident in the affected areas. Moreover, a general increase in mortality has been reported in recent decades in most areas of the former Soviet Union, and this must be taken into account when interpreting the results of the accident-related studies.

    The present understanding of the late effects of protracted exposure to ionizing radiation is limited, since the dose-response assessments rely heavily on studies of exposure to high doses and animal experiments. Studies of the Chernobyl accident exposure might shed light on the late effects of protracted exposure, but given the low doses received by the majority of exposed individuals, any increase in cancer incidence or mortality will be difficult to detect in epidemiological studies.

    Conclusions
    The accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in 1986 was a tragic event for its victims, and those most affected suffered major hardship. Some of the people who dealt with the emergency lost their lives. Although those exposed as children and the emergency and recovery workers are at increased risk of radiation-induced effects, the vast majority of the population need not live in fear of serious health consequences due to the radiation from the Chernobyl accident. For the most part, they were exposed to radiation levels comparable to or a few times higher than annual levels of natural background, and future exposures continue to slowly diminish as the radionuclides decay. Lives have been seriously disrupted by the Chernobyl accident, but from the radiological point of view, generally positive prospects for the future health of most individuals should prevail.


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The material on this page has been prepared by the UNSCEAR secretariat based on the published UNSCEAR reports, including the latest UNSCEAR document Health effects due to radiation from the Chernobyl accident (advance copy - pdf) .

    Last updated: Monday, 28 February 2011


    http://www.unscear.org/unscear/en/chernobyl.html


    SOURCES AND EFFECTS OF
    IONIZING RADIATION
    United Nations Scientific Committee on the
    Effects of Atomic Radiation
    UNSCEAR 2008
    Report to the General Assembly
    with Scientific Annexes


    http://www.unscear.org/docs/reports/...byl_Report.pdf
    The effects of Chernobyl were terrible but well below what were predicted by many of the panic stricken in the mainstream media and the long standing nuclear energy critics.

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