Weird Global Warming and Nuclear Science
03-20-2011, 04:55 AM,
Weird Global Warming and Nuclear Science
The catastrophic disaster that swept Japan into a new stone age is truly an earth-shattering milestone. Worldwide grief and empathy is real and deserved. If this occurrence were only, a script out of a Godzilla B movie, or just lyrics from a ringtone song, the hurt or the aftermath would not be so horrible.
you cannot run in any direction
no place to hide ain't got no protection
it can be sorrow, blood, and destruction
but it can give you incredible emotion
How does one explain this calamity? Is it a mysterious act of God, or is it modern technology run amuck?
As long as the earthquake was not triggered by HAARP like intentions, the wall of tsunami destruction is part of the risk of residing in the active zone of the ring of fire. The meltdown of the Fukushima nuclear power plant complex is far less than a matter of fate. Is nuclear electric generation just too risky to chance or can humanity trust upon technology to institute new safeguards for future developments?
The answer usually depends upon one’s viewpoint on the Global Warming theory. Those who worship at the altar of Transhumanism love their environmentalist adoration. While nuclear power is CO2 friendly, the radiation peril is too threatening to accept. The half-life of these zealots often reflects the mental capacity of Homer Simpson and the appearance of Polycephaly mutant beasts of burden.
Those who see Global Warming as a manageable problem often place great reliance on scientific progress in solving and overcoming environmental challenges. These people normally populate the engineering professions and research laboratories that spawn the next evolution of made-made technological marvels.
Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger write in the WSJ.
"There is a better way. Nations should focus on lowering the cost of clean energy, not raising the cost of fossil energy. The goal? Make clean energy cheap enough to become a viable option for poor as well as rich nations. Until that happens, emissions will continue to rise, and no effort to regulate carbon can succeed.
How do we accomplish that? Stop subsidizing old technology that will never compete with fossil fuels and create incentives for innovation. Along with ramping up support for research, governments should buy cutting-edge clean-energy technologies, prove them—and then give away the intellectual property, so others can improve on it".
Then there are those who view Global Warming as a hoax and a political grab for further consolidation of a centralized society under the control of a corporate/state oligarchy. The evidence is on their side. Exhibit 1, Cap and Trade proposals demonstrate the total disconnects for meeting the energy needs of a modern society.
The high and mighty culture would like you to believe that nuclear energy from civilian reactors is a centerpiece of scientific superiority over nature. Well, there are a few problems with this conclusion. Since the nuclear genie escaped from the bottle, the myth that science is equal to God has run wild for decades. At the risk of condemnation by the scientific inquisition court, is the world a better place to live under the canopy of a mushroom cloud?
Admittedly, the symbol of this age is the face of existential oblivion, dressed up in space suits on life support. The fallout from the Fukushima reactor disaster will last longer than the radioactive dust that contaminates the ecosphere. At question is not solely the safety of the nuclear electrical generation process, but the notion of pushing the limits of human endeavors that endanger the survival of the species itself.
A favorite and world-class curmudgeon, Fred Reed, proposes a valid and alternative conclusion to the insanity in, Why We Need an Asteroid Strike.
"I figure that what we need is to tear the whole sorry system down and see what comes next. The best hope is that a patriot will learn how to impel some unused interplanetary object, Phobos or Deimos or Ganymede maybe, into Washington at ninety percent of the speed of light. This would eliminate the teachers unions, the Pentagon, AIPAC, Fox News, Langley, the Washington Post, lobbies, and my mother-in-law. Cockroaches would doubtless survive, that being what they do best, and evolve into a civilization less degraded than ours, briefly".
The disinformation coming out of Japan from official circles all qualifies as radiation poisoning. The Green revolution is nothing more than a denial cult of blind faith in the power of mankind to destroy society with all the best intentions that the Tempter can muster. Wind and solar are not candidates for prime time. Renewable deficiencies are well documented by IWA and CPA and suggest that only a "true believer" would accept the prevarications of the anti fossil fuel lobby. Sentencing clean coal to the pits of a dark hole verges on calling for the release of Jeffrey Skilling from prison.
After the Japanese disaster, the nuclear industry needs an alternative to the current reactors, now perceived as unsafe. John Wheeler in This Week in Nuclear, evaluates the safety of small nuclear reactors.
"These smaller reactors contain less nuclear fuel. This smaller amount of fuel (with passive cooling I’ll mention in a minute) slows down the progression of reactor accidents. This slower progression gives operators more time to take action to keep the reactor cool. Where operators in large reactors have minutes or hours to react to events, operators of SMRs may have hours or even days. This means the chance of a reactor damaging accident is very, very remote.
Even better, most SMRs are small enough that they cannot over heat and melt down. They get all the cooling they need from air circulating around the reactor. This is a big deal because if SMRs can’t melt down, then they can’t release radioactive gas that would pose a risk to the public. Again, this means the need for external emergency actions is virtually eliminated.
Also, some SMRs are not water cooled; they use gas, liquid salt, or liquid metal coolants that operate at low pressures. This lower operating pressure means that if radioactive gases build up inside the containment building there is less pressure to push the gas out and into the air. If there is no pressure to push radioactive gas into the environment and all of it stays inside the plant, then it poses no risk to the public.
SMRs are small enough to be built underground".
"So called" miracles of science often become the thimerosal babies of tomorrow. Likewise, the politics of nuclear energy are riddled in contradictions. Lessons from the Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Storage Debate, points out the ineptness of domestic energy policy.
"Over the past decade, more than 7,000 shipments of radioactive nuclear waste have been sent, without any problem, to a government repository in the southwestern United States.
This crucial repository is not the ill-fated Yucca Mountain, the Nevada site that has been steeped in controversy since Congress selected it 22 years ago to store the country's civilian nuclear waste. Yucca Mountain, in fact, has gotten so bogged down in legal and political fights that President Barack Obama, in his new budget, is proposing to eliminate almost all of its funding and explore "alternatives," raising serious questions about how the United States will resolve its nuclear waste problems—and, for that matter, whether the nuclear industry will be able to grow in coming decades.
The functioning repository is located in Carlsbad, N.M., and it may hold some useful answers. Since opening in 1999, it has received more than 60,000 cubic meters of radioactive waste from the country's nuclear defense facilities. Experts say its success offers valuable clues about how Washington can learn from the mistakes made at Yucca Mountain to find a lasting waste solution".
If the nuclear industry is targeted for demise, only natural gas or coal can produce the needed electric energy on a scale to keep the economy viable. The alternative of rolling brown outs are a favored tactic used by such titans of business ethics as Enron. Welcome to the era of designed shortages and inflated costs.
The risks of hydrofracking techniques to extract natural gas are very real and profound. The New York Times reports on contamination of the water table.
¶More than 1.3 billion gallons of wastewater was produced by Pennsylvania wells over the past three years, far more than has been previously disclosed. Most of this water — enough to cover Manhattan in three inches — was sent to treatment plants not equipped to remove many of the toxic materials in drilling waste.
¶At least 12 sewage treatment plants in three states accepted gas industry wastewater and discharged waste that was only partly treated into rivers, lakes and streams.
¶Of more than 179 wells producing wastewater with high levels of radiation, at least 116 reported levels of radium or other radioactive materials 100 times as high as the levels set by federal drinking-water standards. At least 15 wells produced wastewater carrying more than 1,000 times the amount of radioactive elements considered acceptable.
Weird science is a serious problem, but factitious global warming is a well-designed dose of irradiation that attacks the mush of feeble-minded morons who want to be "PC" in a culture gone mad. If you surrender to the totalitarian collectivists, you are accepting the global gulag. Clean coal offers the best economic and safe energy future for an independent America. Synthetic fuel conversion from coal into synfuel is the best way to reduce the addiction of imported oil.
SARTRE – March 20, 2011
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