Originally Posted by SpankyMcFlych
Real life contradicts you though doesn't it. What with all the old and obsolete nuclear reactors all around the world. If it was so cheap why haven't they all upgraded to modern to avoid situations like fukujima? I wonder how many fukujima's there are around the world just waiting to happen because the plants are old and decrepit.
Once again I'll repeat myself here. I wouldn't mind nuclear if the problems of plant safety were addressed. There needs to be a 100% safety guarantee at nuclear plants because the consequences of failure are too high. Fukujima and chernobyl will never be safe to inhabit by humans again.
And the true cost of handling nuclear waste needs to be included in the production cost of the electricity. This is the real deal breaker since I bet if they include the cost of storing every cubic centimeter of nuclear waste produced forever I doubt if nuclear power is competitive with anything else. ...And... looking up how much waste is produced each year it's freaking tons and tons of the stuff. Yeah I guarantee you they arn't including the costs of storing that safely for millions of years in the price of nuclear energy.
So yeah. If the industry addresses those two points I'll be fine with nuclear. Until then though nuclear won't be happening where I live.
I never once said upgrades were cheap.
Fukushima didn't melt down because the reactors were of an older style, it melted down due to next to no contingency plan. Had they been able to get the pumps working, the containment vessels did their jobs extremely well. Putting it outside a tsunami zone would've also been wise. Also, the U.S. has much stricter standards and regulations for nuclear power plants, from what I understand. The fact that there wasn't a review of Fukushima's emergency plan before
a major incident says a lot.
There is no 100% safety guarantee for anything, so you'll never get that. And saying that people will never be able to live there again is bunk, look at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and they were freaking bombed
. The radiation is still relatively contained at Fukushima, if they are able to seal off the reactors in time, that area is still very usable. However, if those things hit the water table... Well, a very large area of Japan is in trouble...
The cost of power includes everything the company has to pay for, that means disposing of waste, otherwise the companies wouldn't be making money off the plant.
There had only been two major incidents from nuclear plants before Fukushima. Chernobyl almost doesn't count because of how unbelievably irresponsible the USSR (I believe it was still the USSR at the time) was with that situation, which is still
not contained or cleaned up (nor do there seem to be plans to, although quite frankly I'm not sure what they could do at this point).
And the Three Mile Island plant still functions today, believe it or not.
Edited by SectorNine50 - 4/2/12 at 2:18pm
Originally Posted by http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Mile_Island
Exelon Corporation was created in October 2000 by the merger of PECO Energy Company and Unicom, of Philadelphia and Chicago respectively. Unicom owned Commonwealth Edison. The PECO share in AmerGen was acquired by Exelon during late 2000. Exelon acquired British Energy's share in AmerGen in 2003, and transferred the plant under the direct ownership and operation of its Exelon Nuclear business unit. According to Exelon Corporation, "many people are surprised when they learn that Three Mile Island is still making electricity, enough to power 800,000 households" from its undamaged and fully functional reactor unit 1.