Sunday, April 03, 2011

Nuclear Disaster in Japan, no-one dead

We have been treated to blanket coverage of the Nuclear accident in Japan. While most of these has been reasonably balanced in themselves, the number of stories has been quite incredible for an event where no-one has died and no-one has been seriously hurt, by the Nuclear part that is. People have died in the area of the plant from the one of the largest earthquakes in history followed by a devastating Tsunami. Hang on you say. Weren't there a few chaps rushed into care because of radiation injuries to their feet? Well, as widely reported there were. As was not widely reported they were discharged after no ill-effects were found. That's it for nuclear casualties by the way.

Did you catch the bit about one of the largest earthquakes in history followed by a devastating Tsunami? Under the worst of circumstances none of Japan's Nuclear plants has suffered a severe incident, despite the earthquake and tsunami being much worse than they were designed for. No Chernobyl here. The Fukushima plant is being shut down and the radiation leakage is at very low levels. This is because the nuclear engineers are using sea water for cooling as opposed to any direct leakage from the reactor. Key fact: when talking about radiation the level is all-important. At low levels radiation is irrelevant, we experience it all the time as a consequence of living on planet earth. The output from the plant would be dangerous if you bathed in it as it was expelled from the facility, for a while that is. Otherwise, not so much.

Now this is serious because nuclear hysteria can affect policy. We need nuclear power or else the lights will be going out as coal-fired power stations get taken offline. I also thought we wanted to reduce carbon? Nuclear power is carbon-free.

So, for God's sake let ask the media to engage its brains, if they have any.

Good article on this matter here.