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65 Comments

  1. Another subject Rod is clueless about.

    Anthropogenic sources of oil in the environment are insignificant most years. The reason is that large amounts of naturally seep into the environment continuously. As a result bacteria have evolved that eat bacteria for food.

    This should be obvious even to self claimed environmentalist. Without these bacteria, our planet would be lifeless glob of oil.

    In the US, regulation require that oil spills be contained as result it cheaper to not spill oil than clean it up. Our fun hating friend in DC at the EPA write a report every year about year. Rod should find it and read it. It is in English so Rod should not have any problem reading it. Rod feel free to have me explain what you so obviously do not understand.

    The last time I read the report the ‘Executive Summary’ singled out fun loving recreational as environmental bad guys. Yes, we hate the environment so much that when we spend our leisure time on the water we spill a portion of the oil we use.

    Seriously, the major source of oil in the environment is no longer the oil producer but the consumer. Oil dripping off the crankcase and washing into water ways can be a big issue in urban areas where the bacteria may not be able to eat it fast enough.

  2. I don’t know about this. Seems like the NP oil spill in the gulf received a lot of media attention. A better comparison might be the attention that tritium leaks are getting.

  3. Yet another subject this troll shows that he knows nothing about.

    In 1989 The Exon Valdez, which in terms of impact, remains arguably the worst oil spill in American history, leaked approximately 11 million gallons of oil into Alaskan waters. Nigeria leaks as much oil as the Exon Valdez, which dumped an estimated 10.8 million gallons of oil into the waters off Alaska, did every year. The most affected region in Nigeria is the Niger Delta.

    Environmentalists believe it is the most polluted ecosystem in the world. As many as 546 million gallons of oil spilled into the Niger Delta over the last five decades, or nearly 11 million gallons a year.

    To typify this as insignificant demonstrates ignorance of the worst kind.

  4. Nuclear energy is demonized while oil is just… oh well, it’s just how it is, it happens.

    The entire field of nuclear energy technology was declared dangerous and talked about for months. The reason? A nuclear accident caused by the forth most powerful recorded earthquake on Earth. The accident went by without any nuclear-related deaths. Even more, the damaged plant saved people by sheltering them from the earthquake and tsunami.

    Is there a difference in coverage? Lets look at what happens just in the oil industry (no time for gas, coal, etc), just in the span of a single short month – without any natural disasters around. Compare the tone and magnitude of media coverage and judge for yourself. Here are the stories that I could find:

    – 2 January 2012, Up to 23 people feared dead in Kenya boat collision… The accident happened off the island of Lamu at approximately 8.57 p.m. local time on Sunday when the ferry boat NV Safina, which was carrying 82 people, collided with an oil carrier ferrying oil drums between Mokowe and Lamu Island. The collision caused the ferry to capsize.”

    – December 30 – Oil Truck Crash Kills 13 in Venezuela
    At least thirteen people were killed when an oil truck crashed on a busy road in Caracas, Venezuela, burst into flames enveloping several cars and a bus in an inferno, according to local police. Another sixteen people were reported injured.

    – December 29, 2011 Prosecutors are investigating police actions during a protest earlier this month in which at least 16 people died, the Office of the General Prosecutor in Kazakhstan said Thursday.
    At least 80 people were also injured in the December 16 clashes between police and striking oil workers in the oil town of Zhanaozen, according to state media.

    – Dec. 18, 53* people were dead after a (oil) drilling platform with 67 people on board overturned in the Sea of Okhotsk in Russia’s Far East on Sunday, news agencies reported. (* the initial report was for 4 dead and 49 missing, none were found since then in the 32F stormy waters, the media never bothered to review the story)

    – Dec 19, LYNN COUNTY, TX – An Odessa man has died and two others were injured after an oil rig accident in Lynn County.

    – December 30, 2011
    Brazilian state-controlled oil and gas producer Petroleo Brasileiro SA said a worker died and two were slightly injured in an accident on the company’s PUB-03 oil rig in offshore waters in Rio Grande do Norte state, northeast Brazil on the night of Dec. 26.

    Some more coverage of the Nigerian oil spill, please note that this article mixes up three mega disasters to make the latest one seem “small”:
    – “By Deepwater Horizon mega-disaster benchmarks, it’s not so big… Shell estimated that up to 1.7 million gallons, compared to 11 million gallons for the Exxon Valdez — leaked. Unlike the Deepwater Horizon disaster, which involved the blowout of a wellhead 5,000 feet deep, the Bonga spill occurred at the surface… It was relatively easy to fix… “It is important to stress that this was not a well control incident of any sort,””

    Nothing to worry about…

  5. These guys should be evacuated into a sanitary environment. I suggest Fukushima.

    Big Oil has no social conscience.

    1. Big Oil has no social conscience.

      That’s not what the advertisements say in most of the major news papers in this country. Just ask Chevron.

    2. @Daniel
      Quote: “Big Oil has no social conscience”

      You are missing the point of this conversation – we aren’t talking about Big Oil, we are talking about the media. There are very good reasons for that choice – a corrupt media could be far more damaging – Big Oil is small potatoes in comparison.

      The people around Fukushima are indeed returning to their homes, but good luck with settling foreigners there – or anywhere else in Japan for that matter.

      1. How much is it down to a media corrupted by its need for advertising revenue, and how much is it down to “what do you expect in Africa”? I think they’d pay more attention to a similar spill in North America, Europe or even East Asia…

    3. @ Cal

      Let’s celebrate and have a shrimp cocktail scooped right out from the Gulf. A toxic treat!

      @ Sam B

      Everything is a matter of perspectives and angles. When I watched the video, the media did not pop into my mind. The Nigerians asking for help were begging the Oil companies. For example, there is a big push by the american media that the US army has left Iraq. Funny, but from north of the border, we are told that the US army occupies an area twice as big as the Vatican. I wonder about the media as you do.

  6. “To typify this as insignificant demonstrates ignorance of the worst kind.”

    My I can get into the spirit of fear mongering:

    OMG, OMG, OMG, the sky is falling, the worst whatever in history (insert close up picture of something dead). OMG, OMG, OMG, the sky is falling. OMG, OMG, OMG, the sky is falling. OMG, OMG, OMG, OMG, the sky is falling. OMG, OMG, OMG, OMG, OMG, the sky is falling.

    A year later, wait for it! Never mind!

    It seems to me that it is just a bit childlike to say ‘it is not fair’ that the media fear mongers on one source of energy more than another.

    Bad things happen like that Exxon Valdez. What is important is what do we learn from them. I recommend that DV82XL and Rod read the latest annual report on the subject of oil spills before spouting off about what is insignificant.

    Sam brings up Deepwater Horizon. Hardworking people died. A year later they are still dead. I suspect more people died driving to the beach in the time it took for the bacteria to eat the oil spill.

    1. Your inability to read for comprehension is breathtaking. You might recall that you were the one dismissing the Nigerian situation as unimportant when you wrote:”Anthropogenic sources of oil in the environment are insignificant most years“. Nor can anything I wrote be construed as fear mongering outside the circles that you find in the windmills of your mind.

      As for reading the latest annual report on the subject of oil spills, where do you think I got the numbers I mentioned up thread from.

      Yes natural oil seeps account for up to 180 million gallons a year, however they are overwhelmingly very old, and the local ecology where they occur has adapted. But this does not imply that a spill in a sensitive area like the Niger Delta is something to dismiss as insignificant. These events have major economic and environmental impacts that can take a very long time to recover from.

      The bald fact remains that unlike nuclear, if an oil related environmental occurs outside the West’s backyard, it gets little attention from the Western press regardless of its impact on the region it effects.

      1. “it gets little attention from the Western press ”

        Oh that is funny! It seems everything that DV82XL knows about oil spills he learned from the fear mongering press. DV82XL does not even recognize he is fear mongering.

        Oil and bacteria that eat oil are ubiquitous in the environment. Show me an oil spill where natural remediation has not taken place. Please no fear mongering press releases.

        If something is as terrible as DV82XL says, he should be able to find thousand of examples. The real trick is spending all the clean up money before nature does the job for you.

        1. Edited by blog moderator Who gives a damn if natural remediation takes place? It’s not relevant to the issue, because it doesn’t change the fact that the impact to the people that live in the area where these things happen is huge, and just in case you are too thick to figure it out: the impact on the human population is what is important, it is what is driving the discussion about Fukushima, it is what is being discussed in the video up thread. Trust you attempt to weasel out of taking responsibly for what you wrote by trying to change the terms of the discussion.

          Show me anywhere or any time I (or any one else here for that matter) extended the thesis that these disasters wrought permanent damage to areas affected. Quite the contrary, we have constantly made the point that in the case of Fukushima, nothing could be farther from the truth. The agent causing almost all of the damage to the human population vis-à-vis the nuclear incident there was over reaction by the authorities, as no real danger exists.

          However the impact to those living on the Niger Delta is a very different story. tainted water supplies, and a collapse of their means of livelyhood

        2. Need I remind the fact that still, 9 months after the tsunami, 3,000 workers go about their business every day at Fukushima Daiichi & wearing minimal gears for protection !

          And we are keeping the population away .

          Even I can do the math.

        3. @Kit P

          The dose makes the poison and drives the duration of the recovery time. Dumping 40,000 barrels all at once can initially overwhelm the ability of the naturally occurring bacteria to consume it. Eventually, the system will heal, but how long will it take and how many lives will be disrupted in the process.

          I made it clear that I am a fan of using petroleum. I do not advocate any efforts to shut down the industry, but I want the responsible people to take responsibility and clean up after themselves. I then pointed out how the media pays far more attention to low consequence releases from nuclear power plants than it does to more serious releases from frequent advertisers. The money driven variations in coverage are interesting to me; I like having resources but I do not let money drive my life or change the way I write or think.

  7. con’t:

    … is not something that can be brushed off as nothing to be concerned about as in this case, these events are avoidable, and the time it will take the environment there to remediate by itself to the point were life for the people there to return to normal is beyond their capacity to endure.

    But the real issue here is that this story is not getting the same coverage in the press as Fukushima, yet the damage is greater, and that you drooling moron, is the real issue here.

    I know its difficult for you to maintain your attention span for any length of time, but please try to keep your remarks on topic.

  8. There is no issue. Rod saw a video on the internet. If Rod or DV82XL that it is more than an insignificant problem.

    Seeing dead fish on the beach is not a insignificant problem.

    Dead fish are favorites of fear mongers. I watched a ’60 Minutes’ episode on PCB complete with dead fish. PCB are not particularly The reason fish die in polluted water is usually lack of oxygen.

    If Rod and DV82XL are truly concerned about environmental impact they will look for the root cause of the problem and work on solving instead of complaining about the media.

    1. Edited by blog moderator The media is a big part of the problem. The oil companies know how to deal with these releases of crude because we won’t let them get away with this sort of sloppy incompetence over here. Why? Because our media is all over things like Deepwater Horizon, but it ignores the Niger Delta issue in favor of beating the drum on Fukushima.

      Get it now? The media drives public opinion, if it chooses to ignore a story regardless of the actual impact, them politicians will do nothing, but if the spin a story, (again regardless of the actual impact) the powers-that-be treat it seriously and start to act, whether they need to or not.

      It’s just that simple. Most of us saw that this was the point implied in the lead article, for you on the other hand, someone like me has to draw you a picture.

    2. Kit P,

      What part of being a nuclear engineer in America makes you the end all expert of oil extraction and its impacts on the Niger Delta?

      You are so quick to point out that Rod is always talking in an area he “knows nothing about.” What is the difference between what Rod does and what you do that make him oblivious to this situation but make you right?

      I’m not trying to be sarcastic or anything. I truly want to know. Who ever has a more convincing background I’ll give more weight to what they say.

  9. Hi, I have a question for some experts on this site. I live in Japan and am pro nuclear, and have followed the issue since March 11. I have read that since cold shutdown, there is little or no radiation escaping the plant; I read for example that readings at the gate read 1 millisievert or less above natural background. Yet I have also read from several sources about various areas inside the evacuation zone having a yearly exposure of 50 or 100 millisieverts. Are there really such areas? What is happening here?

    1. I think one can get the picture that more than 3,000 workers are busy every day at the Fukushima plant. They were light protective gears.

      Now, why is there an evacuation zone again ?

    2. Do you mean 1 millisievert per hour or per year?

      I suspect it is possible to 100 millisieverts per year someplace in the evacuation zone but not very likely. This amount of radiation is not harmful. However, it would increase your risk of cancer on the order of of smoking a pack of cigarettes in a life time.

      If government authorities told me I could not return to my house at 100 millisieverts per year, they would have to arrest me. In certain respects, the US has turned into a senseless nanny state. For example, you can not smoke on high school grounds or sell cigarettes high school age children. So some teachers and students can be seen across the street smoking. The risk could be reduced by providing a safe designated smoking area on school grounds.

      Yokohama could answer a question about Japan? I am sure Japanese are aware of the hazard from a tsunami. Damage at the nuke plant resulted because it was much worse than expected. However, many died places away from the nuke. Is this being investigated like the nuke plant damage?

      1. Good comment, Kit. I would guess that almost everyone that comments here would agree for the most part. Bob Applebaum might even mostly agree.

  10. “Why? Because our media is all over things like Deepwater Horizon, ”

    Sorry not buying such a line of thinking. The media has no responsibility for safety or environmental protection. Having read the several hundred page report I can tell you where the responsibility lies.

    First, the people who owned and operate Deepwater Horizon grossly failed to protect workers and the environment.

    Second the oil industry failed. As the report points out, the oil industry has no INPO. As a whole the oil industry has a very good record but there are few companies that do not adhere to the good practices of the rest of the oil industry.

    Third, the oil industry has no NRC. The offshore oil industry is essentially unregulated. The federal government fail to its job.

    Furthermore, it seems very reasonable that the NYT would report of Indian Point and not the Niger Delta. Again there is not story to report on the Niger Delta. DV82XL maybe you should call the editor of your local paper and have them explain it to you. If the minor oil spill shown in the video was in a local water way, the media would be all over it.

    1. Less good comment, Kit. I take away 5 points for your selection of the New York Times and Indian Point for your example, as it is one of the top several most circulated papers in the world, but has Indian Point in the vicinity.

      Your point would have been made much better if you had selected a media source with less prominent geography.

      1. Joel I demand a recount. The point I made about the NYT is exactly what I intended.

        See if you agree upon further consideration. How a region produces energy and protects its environment is a local issue. Some of the best reporting on nuclear issues can be found in small city papers and TV stations with nuke plants. What happens is that a problem gets reported all blown out of proportion. The PR folks at the power plant bring the reporters in and give them an education tour. People who work at the pant also write a few nasty editors.

        The next time there is a problem at the plant or some national nuclear issue the local paper calls their local contacts and as a result local people get good reporting. For example, many years ago there was a study done by a national lab giving a worse case hypothetical scenario killing 25,000 in NYC. This made big headlines in lots of papers but our local paper did a very good job of reassuring local residents with a nuke plant.

        To be honest, I do not care what the NYT, LA Times, or SF Chronicle thinks about a coal or nuke plant producing my power. People who live near nuke plants overwhelmingly support their local power plants. What do they want, another nuke plant please!

        Rod link to Niger is a vestige of his big city thinking before moving to the boondocks. So what headline is in our local paper that is power related to power?

        “Appalachian Power gets rate hike approval from SCC”

        My told me what the increase was and I choked on my coffee. OMG let me see that. Se got the units wrong and the actual increase will be about $2/month. The reason:

        “The Dresden Generating Plant is a 580 megawatt natural gas-fired combined cycle power plant located near Dresden, Ohio. Appalachian Power projects that Dresden will begin commercial operations on or about February 29, 2012.”

        If Rod had been following the boondock news he would know that a coal plant in a small Virginia town is closing loosing the only industry.

        Surly all the folks who read the ‘most circulated’ NYT will celebrate the closing of a coal plant while a sipping their $4 coffee, thinking from the vantage of their stinking city that world is a better place.

        So my point Joel is that the media caters to the audience it serves.

        On the specific matter DV82XL should know when to quit digging. The media only has the responsibility to investors that own the media. It would certainly appear that many places misinforming the public is more profitable. This old guy thinks a media mandate is just a load of BS. If there was ever such a thing as investigative journalism, it is long dead.

        The only thing you will learn from a journalist at the NYT, is the agenda of English majors who do not understand science but are really good at quoting other English majors. I have met a few journalists who understand science. They will tell you the ‘profession’ is very vindictive toward anyone who opposes the conventional wisdom.

        Out in the boondocks, journalists may actually have to be informative to stay in business. So what else is in our local paper?

        “North Anna nuke unit powered down for repairs”

        There are a 104 nuke plants in the US providing 20% of our power. That is the reason Fukushima is relevant to the US news media. Since nuke plants have the potential to harm us, people want to be informed about their status.

        Newspapers do have the capacity to cover multiple topics. So why not Nigeria? Well because it is Nigeria. Which country with a corrupt government, massive population growth, religious based civil war, and outbreaks of outbreaks of cholera, malaria do you want the news media to focus on.

        Then why do we need to educate America on things we do not relate to? I suppose we could invade the country, make them a colony, and impose our standards. If we are going to do that, I vote for invading a nicer place. Again which of the messed up places should we focus on.

        Then we could just focus on the oil industry. Which country should the media focus on so that American media can shape public opinion so we can go in and clean up the place? Nigeria would not be my first pick, how about Iraq?

        Sorry folks, my local paper can relate to coal. So I am sticking to my drama. Lets get the American media to focus on slave labor coal in China and polluted cities in China.

        Oh that’s right, American media is falling all over China because of wind and solar.

        1. Kit,

          I will re-award you 3 of the 5 points I rescinded, as you do make a very well-reasoned point. Obviously the NY Times is far, far different boondocks-type paper that serves a limited geography, but the fact that it has the geographical component of its name still makes it a bit of an imperfect example.

          On the topic of Indian Point, I heard a disturbing blurb on NPR driving back from work yesterday afternoon. They mentioned him as a potential 2016 Democratic Presidential candidate.

          Somewhat on the topic of good reporting from “boondocks” media, I came across this article earlier this morning. http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/at-a-glance/main-section/nuclear_power_urged_to_beat_fuel_poverty_1_4108504

          It also relates to the main beef I have with some of your stances that I mentioned in the comments under the Kirk Sorensen video post from 12/23/2011.

          Rod, you may want to cite that article in a future posting.

        2. Oops, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is the unreferenced “him” that I was trying to refer to in my last comment.

          I should have proofread before hitting the submit button.

        3. How a region produces energy and protects its environment is a local issue.

          I know this is going to shock many people, but I strongly disagree. Energy is one of the most global businesses that there is. Not only are energy fuels shipped around the world, but the waste products that are routinely released from plants producing power by burning hydrocarbons travel at least as far as the more easily measured radionuclides from highly publicized (and extremely rare) accidental releases at nuclear plants.

          As a career naval officer and graduate of the Naval War College, I was required to spend a lot of time thinking about the impact that “local” energy choices had on the world’s political and military balance of power. Energy sources have not only been a primary source of conflict, but they have also played a determining role in the outcome of many armed conflicts during the past 150 years.

        4. Not to mention the impact that energy has on the political environment today. Just a short read of the headlines of today’s Wall Street Journal or New York Times suggest the danger that our energy supply faces. You can exchange energy supply and security of the economy in the last sentence and not change the meaning.

    2. “The media has no responsibility for safety or environmental protection.”

      Again you are trying to make wholesale changes to what I wrote in an attempt to move the focus on to grounds of your choosing.

      No one has stated or implied that the media is responsible for safety or environmental protection, rather they are ethically responsible for providing balanced coverage especially those that claim to be doing so. This is foundation of the concept of freedom of the press, wherein the media is responsible for keeping the public informed, and is permitted to mold public opinion, to further the process of democracy.

      This is not what is happening. When the media over emphases an event like Fukushima but under emphases events in the Niger Delta, they are failing they mandate to inform the public in a balanced way. This is the crux of the argument.

      It doesn’t matter at this point if one subscribes to the view that the media is biased towards fossil-fuels or against nuclear, they have failed to meet a fundamental obligation that they have to inform. Just as they claim the public has a right to know, the public has a counter claim on them to be told everything that is relevant to form an opinion.

      This then is the failure that is real focus of the issue at hand: if the public is not getting a balance picture of the relative risks, and long term impacts of the various sources of energy we use, how can they be expected to make an informed choice?

  11. Hi Rod and Others,

    Read this article ~~> http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-16404268

    About Chevron/Texaco and its response to Ecuador’s supreme court upholding a judgement against it, for its mass-pollution of the forest.

    The arrogance of this “your town pump” company is astounding. They clearly believe themselves to be beyond the control of any democratic governance. Par for the course in the oil industry.

    (read more: http://www.chevroninecuador.com/ )

  12. When you gotta frack, you gotta frack.

    CLEVELAND (Reuters) – A 4.0 magnitude earthquake in Ohio on New Year’s Eve did not occur naturally and may have been caused by high-pressure liquid injection related to oil and gas exploration and production, an expert hired by the state of Ohio said on Tuesday.

    Ohio’s Department of Natural Resources on Sunday suspended operations at five deep well sites in Youngstown, Ohio, where the injection of water was taking place, while they evaluate seismological data from a rare quake in the area.

    1. This must be the gas industries attempt to increase market share by attempting to shut down Davis-Besse…

      1. Now that would be a seriously crazy tactic. I hope no one reading that forgets their sarcasm detector and tells you to put away your foil hat.

  13. Kit P,
    I mean 1 millisievert a year, at the entrance to the plant. Given that radioactivity decreases rapidly with distance, I’m not getting how areas can still have 100 millisieverts a year. I guess various particles are still concentrated in different areas?

    As for refusing to leave the evac zone, one guy has done this. Here’s a link to the Japan Times article:
    http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/fl20111218x2.html

    The piece to my mind is very ambivalent: does he want to be there or not? Is he afraid of radiation or not?

    Here in Japan, post-March 11 media reports tend to be of two types. The first relates to the tsunami and what went wrong and what can be done. All sorts of tragedies there; for example, many kids died even though they survived the quake and their schools were on high ground, because their parents came and picked them up due to the emergency, only for the cars to be swamped downhill.

    The other type of news tends to be radiation-induced fearful reports. For example, a petition is ciculating among thousand of mothers intended to demand the government ‘save the Fukushima children’. There is also the strife about what to do with the ‘dangerously radioactive’ rubble (millions of tons) and the usual panics of food contamination.

    I tell you, I have to come to this site just to get a dose of common sense.

    1. It would appear to me that the government agencies are doing a good job in Japan of disaster management. After a disaster many die from general public health issues like cholera but not in Japan. Detecting low levels of contamination in food is another indication.

      Yokohama, the reason that exposure varies is that the contamination is not uniform. Since I have no experience with spreading the fission products of a BWR over the countryside (no one does), I would round up the usual suspects for hot spots. Think about air filters and roof run off.

      Just for the record, I will eat all the contaminated beef you can send me. We have friend who feed their horses ‘Japanese reject’ hay. A facility has been built to pelletize hay and ship it to Japan increasing the cost of hay. This facility is located 20 miles from a 100,000 feedlot next to a large meat processing plant. Common sense would have cows feed in in the US and the meat shipped to Japan.

      I suspect that the weight of hay changed the delicate balance on the ring of fire causing the earthquake. We should expect the super volcano in Yellowstone to blow next killing all life on earth (again).

    2. The confusion stems from the fact that we are mixing two very different issues – the first is what to do in order to assure radiation safety. This one is easy, the military has to produce detailed maps of the area with the few pockets of higher radioactivity clearly marked, then 99% of the people can return to their homes and the rest will have to wait until the stuff is cleaned up. I think that 50 mS/y is far less risky than the modern levels of psychological stress, 10 mS/y has a safety margin approaching paranoia.

      The second issue is the media frenzy concerning radiation and other selected topics. It’s a lot harder problem to crack but luckily, the article you linked is somewhat helpful. It’s a precious, academic, textbook example of vicious propaganda – you get all that stuff about the rising sun, cute animals and starved to death cows, but you do NOT get any useful information – no dosimetry, no safety margins, no numbers, nothing. You get what the FARMER “thought” the danger of radioactivity MIGHT BE, again without numbers. Gee, can you believe that the entire mighty media haven’t heard of Geiger counters or dosimeters? No “journalist” bothered to bring one to the farmer although a lot of free dosimeters were provided by the government?

      I also find it puzzling that the entire Japanese military, the sixth most expensive in the world, can’t do exposure mapping of a modestly sized area. I’m sure they would also get a lot of volunteer help if they asked for it. Can you imagine the media frenzy if that happened? Then, the politically safe choice is to give the media what they want – empty houses and scary ghost stories… The politicians fear the media.

      1. Good points Sam. If you want to have fun debating with farmers bring up the hazards to the community of anhydrous ammonia. Most farmers are very reasonable including organic farmers because it is requirement to stay in business but watch for the one rearing flip flops. I suspect the wife as a day job.

  14. There is an unusual amount of activity in the market towards a massive consolidation of Uranium producers since Jan 1.

    1. There are some really cool pictures attached to that article. That Turbine is just freaking Cool.

    2. Not every local publication counts as mainstream media. Many are run on shoestring budgets and have as much readership… which is unfortunate. Anyway, it’s good that there are such publications, thanks for the link.

  15. “The dose makes the poison and drives the duration of the recovery time. Dumping ”

    I agree with everything you said in this more reasonable statement. However, you have not really provided any evidence. It appears that you are writing about distant part of the world that you know little about.

    This is something you do a lot Rod. It like when you write wind farms in the PNW, You should reserve your rants for things you know about and can back up. It might play well to the chicken little of the world but you are making the same mistake the idiot press.

    If you are going to work in the nuclear industry you will need to ignore the idiot media and cultivate more responsible journalist. If put a diverse group of people together they all disrespect for journalists because they have got a story wrong about something the know well. A hypothetical example would be an animal lover killing a rabid dog in schoolyard at recess. The press would demonize it as animal cruelty in front of sensitive children.

    “waste products that are routinely released from plants producing power by burning hydrocarbons travel at least as far as the more easily measured radionuclides …”

    What was Rod saying about the dose making the poison? Just as we can measure low levels of radionuclides below the level of harm, we can measure pollutants from fossil fuel at low levels below the level of harm.

    Apparently Naval War College did not doing a very good job with Rod unless he took a course of not learning the lessons of history.

    Production of energy and protecting the environment is a local issue. Many places people do a good job demonstrating this. Energy commodities are freely traded on the world market. If you are an evil person bent on world domination armed conflict is one path. In that case, you may need to procure food, weapons and energy.

    Rod is suggesting that energy is the cause of war but it is evil people. Armed conflicts did not start 150 years ago with the discovery of oil.

    Japan did not invade China for oil. It is reasonable for a peaceful country like the US and other countries to not supply a county engaged in invading their neighbors.

    If energy is freely traded it is not the source of the conflict. Iraq did not need more oil but a corrupt leader wanted to be the Hitler or Stalin of the Arab world.

    1. @Kit P

      Japan did not invade China for oil.

      No, but it certainly invaded Indonesia for oil and attacked the US in Hawaii to attempt to prevent our Navy from intervening. Fortunately for all of us, the Japanese planners missed two very important targets that, if destroyed, would have made our fight far more difficult. They did not sink any submarines in the harbor and they did not hit the fuel storage tanks that enabled those submarines to carry the fight to the Japanese for the first two or three years of the war.

  16. Rod weak rational for not minding our own business is just a little scary.

    One of the reasons the US is a great country is that we are dominated by our military thinkers. Our military is comprised of many who spend a few years serving and then get out. We respect the work our military does but are not afraid to stand up and BS.

    So Rod, please provide the serious academic papers that the Naval War College produced on the environment ramifications of oil production in Nigeria. Where is you questioning attitude when comes to junk science in the media?

    Here is the deal. Companies that do business in the US or EU are required to follow environmental standards of the those countries. France and the US do not have different safety standards when we build a nuke in China.

    1. @Kit P

      I agree that US and French companies do not have different safety standards when they build nuclear plants in places like China. Are you asserting that oil and gas extractors follow similar principles of following home country standards whereever they do business?

        1. If that was true, why would the oil companies complain so vociferously that regulations here in the US discourage US based energy development? If they follow the same rules everywhere, why would they tell everyone that the rules here are too onerous, causing them to take their development dollars overseas?

  17. No names, but after reading the splendid reparteé above, I am reminded of something said many years ago.

    “Never argue with a fool, onlookers may not be able to tell the difference.” – Mark Twain

    No names, but the statement speaks for itself Kit.

    1. @Retired Nuke:

      Thank you for your advice. Though I have always been a Twain fan, I do not believe he was right in this case. I often engage in discussions for the benefit of onlookers. Especially when those discussions are written and searchable, I think such discussions allow critical thinking onlookers to make rational decisions. I suspect they are readily able to discern knowledge from foolishness.

      Of course, there is the distinct possibility that you were accusing everyone but Kit of being the foolish ones. I am willing to accept that judgement of my effort if well argued.

  18. Gents, the to’ing and fro’ing within the comments section was certainly interesting. I take it there is history here, something I am ignorant about because I only visit occasionally, however it does strike me that trading insults does little to advance the debate.

    From my perspective I see legimate points on both sides, although these come at the expense of creating distance from the original point. The real aim I think was to illustrate the way western media outlets generally behave, in essence they are selective, a conclusion that includes both content and how it is presented. This is profoundly important because it exerts an influence on public policy, something that affects us all. Of course this can be for the good, although when it comes to nuclear power, or at least its continued operation and expansion, it is usually slanted towards the negative.

    While I feel oil companies face considerable difficulties with their operations, the impact of such criticism is less of an obstacle to its continuing role in life. Why wouldn’t it be, try denying petrol (gas) to the American people and see what happens. Then again, if we were to switch off all the nuclear plants it will be just as bad, if not worse.

    What unites is more than what divides here I feel.

    Regards Barry (English reader)

    1. Barry the way that criticism impacts a nuke plant is when it is justified. If a nuke plant is demonstrating operational excellence, it does not matter what the media says. There were some nuke plants in the US that ran for 25 years at a 50% capacity factor. The owners did a terrible job of maintaining the material condition of the plant.

      The responsibility of safe operation lies with the owners. In the US, the regulator only provides a spot check to verify that the owner is doing a good job. The number of utilities that did a good job of running nukes, shows that neither the regulations or the regulators are the problem. I have been a excellent plants and plants the NRC would not let operate. One simple difference between the good and the bad is the ability of anyone to report no matter how small and have it taken care of quickly.

      1. Without providing sources, nothing you assert can be differentiated from the rantings of some internet troll. I frankly don’t believe most of what you write.

        Perhaps if you spent less effort insulting those you do not agree with, and more time presenting references, you would be taken a bit more seriously here.

        But then again, you can’t provide anything to back up your statements, because we all know you are pulling your ‘facts’ out of your back end.

        1. In Kit’s defense in this case, the historical capacity factors of plants could likely be found if one wanted to search for it. I know that capacity factors for the entire U.S. nuclear industry increased significantly from the 70’s to the 90’s and into the 2000’s.

      2. Kit, I have no nuclear field experience, nonetheless I find it hard to accept that any operator would ever be deliberately careless. Though doubtless like much of life, the odd corner has been cut and the occasional mistake made. This reservation however needs to be balanced against the long term evidence of over a hundred plants churning out power reliably and safely over decades. This could never have happened without considerable care and discipline on all sides.

        While I recognise the direction of your argument and concede a greater expertise, one apparently based on some direct knowledge, this does not alter the fundamental point that insulting the writers of this blog accomplishes nothing and you know it. If you have evidence to the contrary then I would suggest making it without the snide remarks would have more impact. Personally I read blog and its sister, Atomic Power Review, for some understanding, especially since the March 11th tsunami in Japan. I am gratful for the rational contributions made by these writers, you certainly cannot get it from the BBC, or most other MSM outlets. How sad is that!

        Regards Barry

        1. “This could never have happened without considerable care and discipline on all sides. ”

          You are correct Barry but it took a long time getting here. I have a huge amount of experience with LWR. I can not count the number of weeks I have worked 100+ hours because at the time we did not have enough qualified people to get the job done. One of the best changes I have seen in the US is the rule you can only work 72 hours without a really good reason.

          However, Barry apparently you are okay with Rod’s snide remarks and is general approach of questioning the ethics of everyone in the energy industry.

          It takes nothing away from the nuclear industry to acknowledge others in the energy industry have the same value we do. Protecting life, protecting the environment while doing a dangerous job of producing energy.

  19. “If that was true ”

    Of course it is true but this is not true,

    “why would the oil companies complain so vociferously that regulations here in the US discourage US based energy development? ”

    The US is the third largest oil producer in the world. Rod complains about the US NRC but we still produce more power with nukes than any other regulations. Rod is not speaking for nuke power industry.

    The oil industry would like to produce more oil in the US following our regulations. It is not that it can not be done it is that many of the locations are off limits. Just like mining for uranium in Virginia is banned. I have not heard anyone in the uranium mining industry complaining about regulations, they would just like to be allowed to do it.

    Rod when you complain about the media doing a poor job of reporting about the nuke industry, have you considered that they do a poor job of reporting about other industries?

    In any case, if Shell was producing oil off the coast of Virginia; it would certainly be our business to demand that they do it safely with respect for the environment.

  20. Kit, you make unjustified claims. I make no excuses for unpleasant commentary, why suggest I have. All my intervention sought was recognition that insults accomplish little, extrapolating as you have is disingenuous.

    You obviously have the experience to contribute to this blog. Great, why then sell yourself short. Be civil about it and state your case. The thing about this form of debate is that it offers the chance for rapid correction, something MSM output excludes. This might mean laying out your sources, so allowing the authors here to confirm and retract if required. Indeed they appear to plead for it. Sure it takes effort, but no more than that put in by the original writer. Why not do it so we all can benefit.

    Take it steady, regards Barry

    1. Barry, power plants, ship, and shipyards are dirty dangerous places by nature. We work very hard at keeping them clean and safe. They are not places where civility may be practiced in a different way. The best communication I have ever hears was in a control room was when the reactor operator shouted, ‘Whoever just f***** did something unf***** do it’. While that order was being quietly carried I said two words softly to the reactor operator so he could make other adjustments to keep the plant from scamming.

      So Barry if you do not like my style, I will not be offended if you do not read what I write. It is a lot easier for than trying to figure your idea of civil. Having tea and crumpets with the queen is not on my bucket list.

      1. You arrogant little man. Do you think you are the only person here that has worked in industry? I spent most of my working career in high pressure, intensely male workplaces, but I never used the sort of language I used there outside, and I know, given you have mentioned you have kids, nether dis you at the dinner table.

        I also spent a decade as an elected official for the school commission in my area, and I certainly didn’t think that the sorts of causal insults that we traded with each other at work would be appropriate when debating in committee.

        In other words your excuse is simply not credible, and smells of self justification.

        Rod – I don’t know why you tolerate this sort of behavior from this person, but it is becoming tiresome to many of us, and he is not contributing anything of weight to the discussion.

      2. Kit,
        I’ll make this response and then leave it alone, I sense you are not amenable to my line of thought. That of course is your privilege.

        I too have an engineering background, both mechanical, electrical and electronic within the sphere’s of aerospace and computing.

        Like many, if not all, branches of engineering the potential for danger should one be careless was prevalent. Yet I know of no one I worked alongside who consciously failed to recognise the risks and acted accordingly. In my wide experience, and wide it was, it was the norm for engineering types to embrace common sense as a first principle, even if it meant a little, or even a lot of profanity, although what relevance that has I am not sure, after all we live in a world in which nearly every movie now has the obligatory swear word(s), often uttered by a female actress (what a wow). Clearly from this we must deduce that Anglo-Saxon expletives, while crude, have simply become a meaningless adjunct to everyday discourse. Ugly, in my view yes, but common enough for your statement to lack impact.

        As I see it Rod Adams and other contributers to this sort of site, people with a lifetime of working in the nuclear industry, are justified in feeling proud of the contribution they made to make this form of energy production as safe as it is. I honour their collective efforts no matter where they worked. Rod and his collaborators are also entitled to defend the role of this industry and its potential for tomorrow, even if in doing so they occasionally tip the scales of balance in their favour. And why not one might ask, after all they face considerable and entrenched hostility by people who are often ignorant, deliberately so in many cases, of the long term consequences of not using every technical means to improve life.

        Indeed recognising what the nuclear industry has accomplished, and could achieve, gives me still, cause to hope that one day the life I have had the luck to enjoy will come to all the world’s peoples via the tamed atom.

        Thank you Rod and everyone else who has contributed. Do not me put off by the constant carping and negativity of some, unfortunately this has become all too common.

        Regards Barry

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