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2 Reactors Cancelled in SC; What About Your State?; What About Nuclear Waste?

Sandra Lindberg

Here is a happy development. Economic realities have ended plans to complete two South Carolina nuclear reactors. As reported in Progressive Magazine: Goodbye Nuclear Power. Construction of Two of Four Remaining Planned U.S. Plants Just Canceled. Not long ago, Ameren also decided to close the troubled Three Mile Island (TMI) reactor.

How to sequester decades of lethal radioactive waste will remain an issue for a very long time. NEIS in Illinois (Nuclear Energy Information Service) is participating in efforts to keep new temporary waste storage sites from opening in NM and TX. Transport of the waste would require "mobile Chernobyl's" via US rail. You can read about this issue here: NEIS ACTION ALERT! Federal, state legislative actions threaten renewables, efficiency again; create new radioactive waste threats | Nuclear Energy Information Service.

Illinois has more operating nuclear reactors than any other states. How are current nuclear reactor realities affecting your state?

Kamran Nayeri

This is important news confirming what has been argued earlier; that nuclear energy because of its high capitalization and uncertain social acceptability and competition from other energy sources (cheaper natural gas due to fracking and dropping prices of renewables) is not economically viable. This is good news, indeed. Thanks, for sharing.

Ted F

The last of California's operating nuclear plants, Diablo Canyon Power Plant in San Luis Obispo County, will be retired by Pacific Gas & Electric after its current U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission operating licenses expire in November 2024 and August 2025. We fought the construction of this plant back in the day. While it was under construction, a dangerous earthquake fault was discovered nearby and revised building plans were adopted that were improperly implemented by the contractors. Nonetheless, the NRC blessed Diablo Canyon's safety and the plant entered service despite legal challenges and civil disobedience organized by the Abalone Alliance. Over a two-week period in 1981, 1,900 activists were arrested and sent to jail for protesting at Diablo Canyon--the largest mass arrest in the history of the U.S. antinuclear movement. If we're lucky, the plant will go out, not with a bang, but a whimper but there is still fear that plant may not withstand a major earthquake on the nearby fault. And then there is the problem of the waste.

If we've learned anything from Three-Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima, I think it's that the safety of nuclear power (however it sketches out in ivory tower analysis) cannot be trusted to the opaque centralized bureaucracies that invariably surround it. Unfortunately, James Hansen doesn't get that. See Nuclear Power Must Make a Comeback for Climate's Sake. Hansen thinks engineering can solve the problem. But it's the social engineering that no one has figured out. That, and the disposal of waste, and that's not all.