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  1. Yes, it’s nice to have a some inertia built into the decision making process at a technically oriented government agency like the NRC. Helps reduce the effects of changes in political parties and ideologies.

  2. A lot of positive nuclear related news from the NRC this week.

    I have a feeling that the Yucca deleted up Is putting pressure on the Chairman.

  3. Yes, it’s amusing! But the laughter is ‘lachen als een boer met kiespijn’, which is Dutch for ‘Laughing like a farmer with a toothache’ if you know what I mean. Keep up the good work Rod, thanks for the great website and content.

  4. About two dozen environmental groups launched a volley of legal challenges at nuclear regulators on Thursday in an attempt to stall action to extend the operation of aging reactors and delay construction of more advanced nuclear designs.

    The NRC chairman will surely find ways to drag things.

    1. The NRC Chairman has already provided a hint of his plan to hold the AP1000 FSAR decision hostage to his proposal for “prompt” action on the Fukushima task force recommendations.

      Go back and watch the video I posted where he was being grilled by Lamar Alexander about the duty of a traffic cop to allow traffic to flow.

  5. Jackzo is a Democrat, so of course he has a problem when the vote doesn’t go his way. All Democrats have this same problem.

    Lamar Alexander is a Conservative Republican who believes in rule of law and common sense.

    I rest my case.

    1. @Ionnes – another of the questioners in that same hearing that did a bang-up job was Tom Carper, a liberal Democrat from Delaware.

      If nuclear depended only on conservative Republicans for support, it would be doomed to failure because projects take far too long in the US to be able to be completed within the reign of either party. We tend to get frustrated with having either of them in power for more than 8 years in a row and we often decide to keep the government honest by splitting the power of the House, the Senate and the Presidency up between the parties.

      Feel free to believe what you want to believe, but look around the world and realize that you are in a very tiny minority.

      Many of the rest of us have no desire to move in your political direction. However, we can agree to both support nuclear energy for a variety of reasons.

  6. Ioannes, despite his single-issue doggedness (and Rod has shown admirable restraint in putting up with it), makes an important point.

    At this stage in the evolution of the American Nuclear Renaissance, the critical issues are not technical, but rather persuasional and, yes, political. It’s fun to talk about, but it won’t matter if the LFTR is better than the IFR is better than the EPR, if none get built.

    Old Mick Jagger said in 1968 (in a differently diabolical context), “All you will learn Politics, or I’ll lay your souls to waste!”

    Have an Atomik November 2012…

    1. It’s fun to talk about, but it won’t matter if the LFTR is better than the IFR is better than the EPR, if none get built.

      That’s what I’ve been saying for quite a while now.

      It also depends very much on what your definition of “better” is. These are all the products of engineering, and the Art of Good Engineering is all about trade-offs. Thus, while you can easily point to design that is a failure, your ranking of successful designs is going to depend on your personal priorities.

      I don’t think that anyone could seriously argue that the Light Water Reactor has been anything but a phenomenal success.

      1. @Brian – we agree on that point. With better marketing and focus from the corporate leaders, it could be an even larger success. We have an enormous base of knowledge about the behavior of water at high temperatures and pressures and about the behavior of the mechanical and electrical devices required to use it as a coolant and working fluid.

        Scientifically minded people who are always looking for something new might not be satisfied, but from an engineering point of view, light water is “good enough” and something that we can improve.

        Disclosure: I work for a company that is designing a light water reactor with some significant improvements in several measures of effectiveness.

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