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Sunday, March 20, 2011


Dick Williams

This will be on area where we disagree - usually we're in synch. I think it will slow down but not kill nuclear. In this country it produces 20% of our power with just 104 plants - that's a pretty good ratio of plants to megawatts. The new generation of plants have a lot more redundancy than the old ones and later designs are said to be passively safe - so there are significant design differences. For the most part we don't and should not build on fault lines. We do have two California reactors that are in such positions - the twin reactors at San Onofre near Camp Pendleton are just north of the San Onofre State Beach - which has a traditional nude use area on the south end of the beach.

What's needed is a more efficient way to transmit or carry power over long distances so we didn't have to build plans near urban areas or near fault lines. And a repository for the spent fuel. The French handle that better - not good but better - by placing it spent fuel rods in casks not water. I don't believe they have a national repository either - nobody wants the stuff.

There'll be a big selling job by the nuclear industry on how safe the new generation of reactors and plants will be - we'll see if they can get that message through. And in truth so far something is working even in the damaged Japanese plants - there has not been a major release of radiation - according to Ann Coulter what has been released so far is just enough to be good for us. That was a crock and she's being ridiculed for it.

Pretty good article in today's KC Star about third and fourth generation plants:


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