Hi, I’m Gerald Lee Carroll back again with some thoughts on the Japan issue. As you might know I’m very concered about enviromental issues as I’m part of Greenpeace. You can see that in this post about Gerald Lee Carroll and Greenpeace
I’m still shocked by what’s happen over the last ten days. I still can’t think what would have happened if such a natural disaster would have stricken other countries with nuclear generators such as Pakistan, India, Russia or Brazil which clearly do not have emergency managing capabilities as efficient as those of Japan. Check out this interesting BBC analysis on the Japanese situation: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12825342
What if instead a tsunami would have hit the Central nuclear Almirante Álvaro Alberto located on the Brazil coast in Angra dos Reis, very close to Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo? Just think of it as a possibility, letting aside the fact that tsunamis do not occur in the Atlantic. But picture a flood of epic proportions, which do occur in that area that could take down the emergency systems. Without disregarding the Brazilian emergency systems we saw in 2010 that they are not ready for catastrophe scenarios.
Or closer to home, California has had its share of natural and man-augmented disasters (think of the fires two years ago). What would happen if we had a similar problem at Diablo Canyon, located on an earthquake area? The social disaster left by Katrina in New Orleans has shown us the weakness of the federal emergency response systems. It’s been a while but given the current economic situation my bets are not on the cash flow to the emergency systems.
I think it’s time to rediscuss our energy needs and the risks we are willing to take to be able to have a bunch of electrical devices at home?
If you want to read more on this debate check out this Australian page that summarizes the pros and cons of nuclear energy power plants: http://www.naturaledgeproject.net/TheGreatSustainabilityDebates-NuclearPower.aspx