Waste Not Want
That Japan's (and the world's) biggest nuclear plant in terms of output capacity may be on a major quake fault line is shocking news
That this was only discovered during Monday's earthquake is somehow worse.The Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant shook violently when a magnitude 6.8 earthquake struck Niigata prefecture in northern Japan on Monday morning. The plant was not designed to resist shaking caused by earthquakes of greater than magnitude 6.5.
Late yesterday it was reported that 400 drums of low-level radioactive waste had toppled over during the quake. About 40 lost their lids, spilling their contents on to the ground as they fell. The spillage was one of more than 50 malfunctions the plant experienced in the immediate aftermath of the quake.
All kinds of reasons are being put forward for Indonesia needing nuclear power stations and yet, as I've consistently argued, there is not one country which has solved the fundamental problem of how to dispose of the highly dangerous waste which is the by-product. Not one.
The following recent stories from Nuclear Waste News
, an industry publication, demonstrate this.The Canadian government has directed its Nuclear Waste Management Organization to begin searching for a long-term storage site for spent nuclear fuel, but it acknowledges that that could take several years.
France's nuclear-safety authority, known as ASN, has concluded that, if the nation's large volumes of depleted uranium are eventually considered to be nuclear waste, it would require substantial modification to a deep repository for the country's spent nuclear fuel.
The U.S. Energy Department is seeking a public relations firm to develop a communications and public outreach plan for the high-level nuclear waste repository being planned at Nevada's Yucca Mountain. The solicitation process is being conducted by DoE's online portal.
Whichever firm gets appointed will have a nigh on impossible job if they also have to explain away the following mishaps:
- Forced by Court, NRC Weighs In on Terrorist Threat at Diablo Canyon
- Undisclosed Radioactive Waste Found Near Former Halaco Plant in California
- NRC Report Tweaks Los Alamos, Just as Waste Discovered Missing
- Hanford Stakeholders Launch Formal Talks to Speed Cleanup
- Tennessee Town to Test Water for Radioactive-Waste Contamination
- N.J. Company Faces Near-$10,000 Fine for Lost Gauge in Pennsylvania
And from elsewhere in the world:
- Radioactive Waste Dumps in Tajikistan Rated in Poor Condition
- British Panel Slams U.K. Plan for Spent-Fuel Dump
- Taiwan to Close Nuclear Waste Dump; Residents Brace for Economic Hit
Finally, how about corrupting ancient rights?
- Australian Aborigines Take $12 Million to Host Nuclear Waste Dump
And that is the core of my anti-nuclear stance. Allow me to re-emphasise that NOT ONE country has solved the problem of nuclear waste disposal, least of all those highly technological countries such as the Good Ol' U.S.of A, the UK, France and Japan.
The one glimmer of hope that I have here is that Indonesians have access to better education facilities than Australian Aborigines, and are rapidly learning how to exercise so-called democratic rights. I can't see that a nuclear industry PR campaign would succeed here.
That Indonesia's proposed nuclear plant may be on a quake fault line is largely irrelevant.
Labels: nuclear power