Chernobyl Legacy

Discussion in 'Earth Science' started by lightgigantic, Oct 20, 2007.


How much are you in favour of Nuclear Power

  1. All for it - no problems with buying real estate next door

  2. Not ideal, but better with it than without it

  3. undecided

  4. uneasy about it - concerned about long term impact

  5. Its a human disaster just waiting to happen

  1. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

    Well, it's a matter of perspective, you see? If, for example, it's the number of deaths that of AIDS that's so upsetting to you, then it would seem that deaths are what upsets you, not the disease. In which case, any death would upset you. Perspective. Death is death regardless of the cause.

    You didn't choose to be in the area of the auto accident any more than you choose to be in the area of a nuclear accident. Choice has little or nothing to do with it. And oddly, that's why they call it "accident".

    Baron Max
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  3. Grantywanty Registered Senior Member

    Yup. And car manufacturers could prevent those deaths and so could legislatures and so could investment in better public transport and so on.

    I know you are smart enough to understand what I meant, so sometimes I don't quite know what you are up to when you post. Of course people don't choose to be in either accident. But the vast majority of people who are in car accidents decided to get into cars and drive or be driven. People who get cancer from nuclear waste, as one example, did not choose to be exposed to that waste. They did not choose to put themselves at risk and they did not go out and engage in a risky activity as drivers and their passengers do.
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  5. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    I'll try to make this simple enough for a nuclear engineer to understand:

    The average solar flux across the NA continent is a completely irrelevant number. We are not planning on scattering PV panels at random.


    Heat engine solar is much easier to scale up than PV panels. It's already been done - the biggest solar plants are all heat gatherers, not PV panels. I linked one - there are many others, some bigger, some more efficient.

    And it's more efficient in the first place. Why don't nuke proponents make themselves familiar with even the basics of other technologies?
    I've been moderate and tempered compared with yourself and your co-proponents. Read your own posts, from the very beginning.
    Because it took out, more or less permanently, thousands of square miles of productive farmland. Because it's death toll is still to be measured - never counted properly in the first place (notice that immune suppression other than cancer is not counted, for example, nor is "the population" defined for an accident that sent concentrated plumes to specific areas thousands of miles away), not over yet in the second (Chernobyl is still melting down - it will need active containment for many years). Because the threat to groundwater supplies is as yet unknown. Because the economic effects were an order of magnitude greater, and continent wide. And because the effects of Bhopal were partly the result of incompetent response afterwards - failure to do simple, easily done things well within the reach of standard, well-understood technology and medicine after the accident.

    There are no such remedies for a major nuke accident - or even a slow buildup of background radiation. Once that shit gets loose, there's not a thing anyone can do about it.
    Other people do not share your priorities, in which meeting the "power crunch" (again, easily met by conservation and efficiency improvements in the short run, with more difficulty a variety of technologies in the long) is an emergency so extreme the panic of it shortcircuits common sense.

    Nuke power should be the last resort, not the first. Until after a concerted, five hundred billion dollar effort has been put into intrinsically superior and fundamentally safer alternatives, we have no business even looking at something as hazardous - politically, economically, ecologically - as nuclear power.
    And not only choice, but benefit. The benefits of a crash program for nukes will accrue to some, the risks and expenses to others.
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  7. Echo3Romeo One man wolfpack Registered Senior Member

    This is like talking to a creationist. If you're not going to cite any facts or provide one iota of data to support your arguments there really is no point in continuing this discussion.

    So far you've only given us moral objections to nuclear power that are on the same footing as "I don't like it." There is nothing worth discussing in such statments. It really helps us understand your position when you can say that "there are X thousand square kilometers available in free acreage, and with a solar collector at Y% delivered efficiency, we can expand the grid by Z amount over the current capacity (roughly W gigawatts)." These are the questions facing the people who manage the world's energy economies. If you want to head off the explosion in the nuclear industry, you need to argue your case on those terms or you'll never get any traction. I'm sure your moral objections are enough to get you comfortably enraged, but when you try to apply them externally they are utterly obliterated in a head-on collision with the cold, objective wall that is reality.
  8. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    My case is that nothing about the safety, efficiency, cost, or desireability, of a nuclear power plant should be trusted if it comes from a nuclear power engineer, or anyone else making their living from the nuclear power industry.

    Exhibit A is the fifty year record of such assurances from that source, compared with the subsequently revealed reality. That should be sufficient, actually.

    Exhibit B (facts) might be your assertions on this thread, in which we are informed that

    6% PV panels on 150W/m^2 sites are some kind of valid solar comparison for decision purposes,

    the people who consider Chernobyl to have been a uniquely large and significant event - unequaled, as industrial disasters go, so far - are just irrationally afraid of radiation,

    that everyone who points to the various serious hazards and large expenses inevitable with expansion of the nuke power industry is just ignorant of the great advances made in power plant engineering,

    that such obvious considerations in waste disposal as geological hazard and transport insecurity are all taken care of by DOE approval of the various ad hoc solutions,

    that the various economic boondoggles and unpredicted operational accidents and political near-disasters that we know of (an incomplete list) - several ongoing - are evidence of the robustness of the safety systems rather than demonstrations of the impossibility of assuring dependable behaviors in such a complex and unstable physical, economic, and political construction,

    - - and so forth.
  9. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Basically, what you are saying is that we should not trust the professionals - the only ones who really know the business. Well here's a suggestion for you - why not take your own advice? The next time you are in serious need of medical attention do NOT go to a doctor! After all, they are the professionals who make their living in their "industry.":bugeye:

    I've been reading your posts for a while now without making any additional comments; but I believe I have finally figured out what your real problem is with the nuclear industry. You actually don't know much about the technology (and I'll frankly admit that I don't know it all either, but I'm ahead of you) and you therefore think - since your knowledge is SO limited that no one else know it either.

    Get over your pompous ego and believing that NO ONE is smarter than you are!!!! That's your whole issue in a nutshell. You've made a rather despicable display of your arrogance. :bugeye:
  10. Klippymitch Thinker Registered Senior Member

    Between Nuclear power or no power, well the answer is simple Nuclear power.

    The western society would not be able to run without electricity and would crumble and lead to looting, destruction, and an inevitable fall of western society as we know it leading to many deaths and starvations.

    We don't really have a choice.
  11. Donnal Registered Member

    NUCLEAR = BIG $$$$
    gee it dont add up it cost too much money solar is the go
  12. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Depends on what we trust them for.

    If you trust them for accurate estimates of the cost of getting rid of decommissioned power plants, for example, you're being silly. They've been missing by orders of magnitude, consistently for years. If you trust them for prudent estimates of the hazards of background radiation, the odds of a serious accident in a nuclear power plant, or the real life effects of devoting so much of our energy research and a development money to nukes of various kinds, you are trusting them in matters of which they know little more - and often (we observe) significantly less, for some reason - than an ordinary educated person who reads the newspapers. And solar power comparison? Conservation? Null set, roger, beep.

    If you look up there, you will find a post by a self-described nuclear engineer who tells us that the best solar option now available for expansion to industrial size installation is 6% efficient PV panel technology. That piece of info was delivered, btw, with a thoroughly condescending attitude and tone, in the way of educating me with a few hard, cold, realistic numbers. It was delivered by someone who dismisses nuclear critics as getting their facts from Greenpeace pamphlets.

    And you call me arrogant?
  13. Echo3Romeo One man wolfpack Registered Senior Member

    Whether or not the professionals are to be trusted isn't germane to this discussion. I'm not sure why he's making my credentials an issue, as I haven't been using them to make an appeal to authority. I suspect it is because he's come to realize his arguments aren't supported by fact, and is now trying to build his case on obfuscation and attacking the source rather than the argument itself. As if his tepid ad homs hold sway over the laws of physics.

    Like I said, the truth is always in the numbers. They're out there in plain sight for anyone to see. Whether he thinks I'm being an asshole or not, it doesn't change the fact that 2+2=4.
  14. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    makes you wonder what we ever did for the several milleniums before we ever had power generators .....
  15. draqon Banned Banned

    I would like to point out the readiness of UN to label it as "greatest catastrophe"... outlining stains of a country in opposition sure is a sweet deal.

    meanwhile this so called "humanity" as UN has uttered...has already made much worse catastrophes with much more fatalities

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