1. I don’t think the errors in this are “minor”. The other big error is the claim that newly designed and operating Gen III designs “produce almost NO high level waste” in comparison to previous designs. The guy has great delivery, but what he is delivering is worse than BS.
    All he had to do was mention that at Chernobyl there was no containment structure, and at Three Mile Island there was. Instead, it appears he is lying, and once that suspicion is aroused, its the end for credibility. PR like this is a big part of what destroyed the nuclear industry in the first place.
    The statement that Chernobyl was a Generation I design isn’t just an error of fact, it is part of an argument that is total BS. It continues on with the claim that Generation III reactors are the solution to the waste problem. “We’ve already created most of the nuclear waste the world will ever see”. You can’t pile BS on top of BS and call it a minor point.
    When you had NRC Commissioner Dale Klein on Atomic #151 he ignored Dan Yurman’s opening list of topics and kicked off the discussion with what he called the “number 1 near term challenge” for the NRC and the nuclear industry, which he stated was “waste confidence”.
    A video claiming the problem is solved by existing designs that are operating now because they don’t produce the waste in the first place is about the worst thing I can imagine to show someone who had waste concerns.
    So, hopefully, the video authors will modify what they’ve done after doing some fact checking.

  2. While I appreciate that this video is going for the right thing, there are some points I have to take issue with. call them nitpicks, perhaps, but the thing we have to remember is that the one thing we need to value as nuclear proponents is being honest and factually accurate. That’s what we have on the anti-nukes and we need to keep beating that drum, but part of it includes the need to cross every t and dot every i so that we don’t look bad and don’t give them anything to go after.
    Chernobyl was not a prototype. Was it obsolete? Well, it was not old, but I’d say that some aspects of the RBMK were obsolete before it was ever designed. The RBMK has some great features in terms of economics and capabilities, but many corners are cut in the design – that is for sure. Using a monolithic graphic block with water tubes for cooling is a design that goes all the way back to Hanford-B and it’s one that most of the rest of the world had abandoned. The RBMK pretty much ignored passive inherent safety and primary design criteria appears to be big and cheap.
    Construction was even worse. The graphite reactors of this type built in the US had a very strong biological sheild, layers of thick iron and steel reinforced concrete. By the time of Chernobyl, redundant containment structures were standard. The reactor at Chernobyl was originally supposed to have a containment structure, but that was omitted during construction. They put a sub-standard concrete cap on it and just built an industrial roof over the complex, no better than a warehouse.
    However, the one thing I take issue with on this video is the attitude of “is nuclear safe yet” and “is it yet ready” and “we’ve finally worked out the kinks.”
    It implies new reactors solve a problem that never really existed. It’s not that it’s finally so advanced that it’s okay, it always was safe and the PWR’s built in the 1960’s, though not as advanced as today’s never posed a threat to anyone.

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