Time: “Superstorm Sandy’s Unexpected Wrath Makes a Powerful Case For Revisiting Fukushima and the Dangers to Nuclear Energy From Natural Disasters”

Conditions at 3 US Reactors Were Similar to What Caused the Fukushima Disaster

We barely dodged a nuclear crisis from Hurricane Sandy at the Oyster Creek, Nine Mile and Salem plants.

For example, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission confirmed loss of power to the fuel pools at Oyster Creek:

On October 29, 2012, Oyster Creek declared a Notice of Unusual Event followed by an Alert due to high water levels in the intake structure. Elevated intake structure water levels are of concern as excessive levels can flood certain plant components and render normal cooling systems inoperable. No safety systems were adversely affected by the high intake level. The site also experienced a loss of offsite power. Both emergency diesel generators started as designed and supplied power to the emergency electrical busses. Shutdown cooling and spent fuel pool cooling were temporarily lost but subsequently restored, after the busses were reenergized. At 9:59 a.m. EDT on October 30, the licensee restored one line of off-site power via a start-up transformer. Oyster Creek terminated the Alert at 3:52 a.m. EDT on October 31 when water level dropped below 4.5 ft and off-site power was fully restored.

Time Magazine notes:

Superstorm Sandy’s unexpected wrath makes a powerful case for revisiting Fukushima and the dangers to nuclear energy from natural disasters. As Sandy made landfall on Atlantic City, Oyster Creek nuclear power plant nearby was fortunately on a scheduled outage. But Indian Point 3 in Buchanan, N.Y., Nine Mile Point 1 in Scriba, N.Y., and Salem Unit 1 in Hancocks Bridge, N.J., all experienced shutdowns because of high water levels or electrical disruption. Last year, the dangerous Fukushima nuclear power plant meltdown was caused by similar conditions after tsunami waves flooded the plant and short-circuited both the regular and back-up electrical systems.

Equally dangerous are drought and record heat conditions the U.S. experienced last summer. In August, one of two reactors at the Millstone nuclear power plant near New London, Conn., not far from where I grew up, was shut down because water in Long Island Sound needed to cool the reactors got too warm. Cool water is necessary to produce electricity.

Fukushima has been a worldwide wakeup call, particularly for the United States, the country with the largest number of reactors — 104. The lesson is glaringly obvious: when nature and nuclear energy collide the consequences can be lethal.

Indeed, the gravest natural threats are not being addressed.  See this and this.

Time continues:

Unfortunately, Japan is not offering an inspiring example of how to handle this threat. While all but two of the country’s 50 reactors remain offline, government and nuclear industry are proposing plant restarts and construction projects. This muddled move stands against the majority of Japanese citizens who have turned against nuclear power.

The American government is largely responsible for the Japanese government’s stubborn support for nuclear power.

Time concludes:

It’s time to face the facts: Mother Nature rules. The best we can do is try to lessen the damage from her wrath. Phasing out nuclear power is the safe answer.

Indeed … nuclear power – other than perhaps alternative types – is expensive and bad for the environment.

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  • amerikagulag

    I personally believe Fukushima has other skeletons which are deliberately being ignored by the zio-press. First and foremost – the STUXNET virus was found in the Fukushima computer system in October prior to the ‘earthquake’ and resulting tsumnami. There was virtually no earthquake damage to Fuku. The difficulties it experienced were from the tsunami. That said, those difficulties it experienced mirrored those which STUXNET is designed to cause.

    It is entirely possible that the US and Israel are responsible for Fukushima and the biggest nuclear in human history. Chernobyl doesn’t hold a candle to what’s going on at Fuku. And the zio-press’ silence on the matter is deafening, which, in itself speaks volumes as to the possibility of US/Israeli involvement.

    • I know some people believe the quake was engineered and amplified too, but… what is the motive?

      • Motive not necessary, Arrogance of industry & out of controlled science projects fueled by Government giveaways like the 188,000,000 to the Nuclear industry, that is to blame. add the purchase power by Billionaire Coal, Oil, and other industry leaders to buy what is reported by networks like FOX and control what is said, and then what lies can be purchased from so called experts to skew the truth. then add the power to LOBBY politicians to do things like raise acceptable limits on Nuclear contamination limits and other items like Fluoride in our water being safe, or good for our teeth..We are all lab rats to the masters who have brain washed or in some cases bullied the masses..and sadly it is partly our own fault for letting it happen..

  • mendolover

    I’ve always believed ‘Mother Nature’ is not to be fooled with, but let’s not also forget the US Air Force.

  • OK so BP gets hit with this huge fine for the Gulf mess…Who the HELL is paying for TEPCO’s Mess around the globe?…Where the hell is the UN on this one..I don’t give a rats ass about losses to the share holders of TEPCO or GE or the losses to the Queen or President Obama’s buddies..let us close all Nuclear plants that do not guarantee 100% safe operation during a 100 year event until they take corrective measures..NUCLEAR power has proven to be the MOST expensive option of energy in the history of energy producing systems..