Carnival of Nuclear Energy 130 – Best of the pronuclear blogs for week of Nov 10, 2012

Update #2: (Posted at 1315 EST on November 11, 2012)

Steve Aplin provided the following contribution from his insightful blog titled:

Canadian Energy Issues

Cities and power: revisiting Adam Smith’s Division of Labour

Post blurb: Modern cities cannot function without electricity. That
electricity is usually the product of other people from outside of the
city, which, says Steve Aplin, illustrates Adam Smith’s division of
labour in real time action. City dwellers do not produce most of what
they consume; that is why they exist in the form they do.

End Update #2

Update #1: (Posted at 1230 EST on November 11, 2012)

Neutron Economy

Steve Stutnik took me up on my offer to update this Carnival. As I suspected, he is at the ANS Winter Meeting and did not get around to submitting his contribution before he started traveling. He has some great advice to offer; it is a companion piece to the Vermont Yankee public meeting post titled More Nuclear Supporters than Opponents at Public Service Board Hearing.

What is most important to outreach? Just showing up.

When it comes to outreach, if you’re not there, you’re not part of the story. For nuclear supporters to get their perspective represented in the media, the first rule is simply this: Just show up. When nuclear supporters show up in numbers (as they have in Chattanooga and for Vermont Yankee), the impact on how public debates over nuclear are reported could not be more clear.
End Update #1

For the past 129 weeks, pronuclear bloggers have gathered up their “best of the week” posts and published a Carnival of Nuclear Blogs. This week, I am privileged to be the host of Carnival Number 130. I hope you recognize that it is a high quality reading list from people that are passionate about communicating the truth about nuclear energy. This installment will be updated later this weekend; there are not as many submissions as usual just yet.

I suspect that is because a number of the normal contributors are either packing or already traveling to San Diego, the location of the ANS Winter Meeting, scheduled for November 10-14. Interestingly enough, the topic for this meeting, which was selected long before Superstorm Sandy ever developed, is Future Nuclear Technologies: Resilience and Flexibility. Unfortunately, I was unable to free up enough time to attend the meeting in person, but I will be following it on Twitter; the hash tag is #ANS12.

Without further ado, here are some posts worth reading if you want to learn more about nuclear energy and public communications.

Nuke Power Talk

Energy Production and Paper Cups: Measuring the Impacts

At Nuke Power Talk, Gail Marcus notes that nuclear power isn’t the only field where people pick out a measure to make something look good or bad. From paper cups to power plants, erroneous measures can give the wrong impression of the impacts of a technology on people and the environment.

Aside: I generally look at nuclear energy from a more business focused point of view than many of my more classically trained technical colleagues. In a comment submitted to Nuke Power Talk, I reminded Gail that businesses are expected to promote their own products and rarely mention negatives. Maybe one of the reasons that we hear more negative than positive about nuclear energy sometimes is that the nuclear industry leaders have not done what most businesses do as a matter of routine – they have not paid to promoted the positives. End Aside.

Yes Vermont Yankee

Hurricanes and Nuclear Plants in the Main Stream Media

Meredith Angwin reviews how the main stream media reacted to the “nuclear plant in the path of hurricane” and it “almost triggered a disaster” stories of anti-nuclear activists. The media noted that the nuclear plants had come through Sandy all right. The media devoted themselves to covering Sandy, not speculation.

More Nuclear Supporters than Opponents at Public Service Board Hearing

Vermont Yankee requires a Certificate of Public Good from the state Public Service Board (PSB). The PSB announced it would hold only one in-person hearing to gather public input about this certificate. More nuclear supporters than opponents came to the public hearing, held on November 7. The hearing was very civil, perhaps because the opponents were outnumbered three to one by plant supporters.

Aside: Meredith’s efforts in Vermont remind me of the story of the The Tortoise and the Hare. Her steady efforts have been increasingly successful. The writeup in the Brattleboro Reformer about the PSB meeting was a great example of how pronuclear activism can work. It mentioned Meredith’s blog. End Aside.

Next Big Future

High Temperature Gas Cooled Reactors and The Potential Market for 700 Reactor Modules

Brian Wang writes about high temperature gas cooled reactors (one of my favorite subjects) and the estimated market for 700 reactors in North America.

Brian was riffing off of this post from the NGNP Alliance blog that is also worth reading.

Nuclear Technology That Even the Nuclear Skeptics Should Like – Or At Least Seriously Consider

ANS Nuclear Cafe

Challenging scientific organizations to adhere to scientific methods

The December 2009 edition of The Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, a book titled Chernobyl: Consequences of the Catastrophe for People and the Environment, comes to conclusions about the effects of the accident that are in stark opposition to the conclusions reached by the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation.

In short, the report published by the New York Academy of Sciences is far from a work of science. It is the responsibility of everyone who has a professional interest in properly informing the public about their subject to challenge those who seek to portray fiction as fact.

Rod Adams seeks the support of nuclear energy and radiation professionals to join Ted Rockwell to encourage the New York Academy of Sciences to take *corrective action* regarding this seriously flawed Chernobyl report.

Hiroshima Syndrome

How Hazardous is Cs-137? – Part II

In last week’s op-ed piece (November 2), Les provided a great chemistry lesson by summarizing the chemical and biological hazard of Cesium isotope 137 (Cs-137). This week, Les looks at how Cs-137 has been used to speculate on risk relative to the spent fuel pools at Fukushima Daiichi. When you visit for this week’s installment, be sure to scroll down to find the November 2 commentary and refresh your understanding of how cesium fits into the periodic table.

Atomic Insights

Out of 110,645 Chernobyl clean up workers, 19 might have contracted radiation related leukemia

A well-funded, long term study of 110,645 Ukrainian workers who were involved in cleaning up contaminated areas following the Chernobyl accident has issued a report of its results. Using a variety of statistical methods and models, the twenty researchers involved in the study have determined that 19 of the 110,645 (0.017%) might have contracted leukemia in one form or another as a result of their radiation exposure during the clean up effort. The mean bone marrow dose of the people involved in the study was 132.2 mGy (13.2 Rem) and the median duration of the exposure was just 35 days.

However, the abstract of the study claims that the number of illnesses is “significant” (in a statistical sense) and that the doses and dose rates are “low”, even though they are several times higher than the doses that any member of the public has received as a result of the Fukushima Daiichi triple meltdown.

Atomic Show #190 – Nuclear plant performance during Hurricane Sandy

Guests on this show include:

Margaret Harding, who blogs at 4 Factor Consulting
Meredith Angwin, who blogs at Yes Vermont Yankee and ANS Nuclear Cafe
Will Davis, who blogs at Atomic Power Review and ANS Nuclear Cafe

The four of us chatted about the performance of nuclear power plants that were located in the path of Hurricane Sandy was just one more demonstration of nuclear technology’s resilience. We also talked how a certain segment of the antinuclear industry loves to spread scary what if stories. Every time nature tests our nuclear power plants and they perform well, the anti’s tell us that “we almost lost (fill in the blank)”. Then they point to an event like Fukushima and tell us that proves that nature can throw more at nuclear plants than they can handle.

About Rod Adams