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Nuclear Commission Considers Fewer Inspections

Discussion in 'American Politics' started by essentialsaltes, Jul 17, 2019.

  1. essentialsaltes

    essentialsaltes Stranger in a Strange Land

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    Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff is recommending that the agency cut back on inspections at the country’s nuclear reactors, a cost-cutting move promoted by the nuclear power industry but denounced by opponents as a threat to public safety.

    While the report made clear that there was considerable disagreement among the nuclear agency’s staff on the cuts, it contended the inspection reduction “improves efficiency while still helping to ensure reasonable assurance of adequate protection to the public.

    Some of the staff’s recommendations would require a vote by the commission, which has a majority of members appointed or reappointed by President Donald Trump, who has urged agencies to reduce regulatory requirements for industries.


    Frankly, when it comes to nuclear power plants, I think it's well warranted to aim for something stronger than a 'reasonable assurance' of safety.
     
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  2. Arcangl86

    Arcangl86 Newbie

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    This is an interesting time to be pushing for less regulation considering that the Chernobyl disaster is fresh in everybody's mind because of the show.
     
  3. iluvatar5150

    iluvatar5150 Well-Known Member

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  4. variant

    variant Happy Cat

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    Chernobyl doesn't really ring true as the kind of disaster we should expect based upon how we run things. The Soviet system was corrupt and incompetent from top to bottom to get that kind of thing to happen.

    Think more TMI.
     
  5. Arcangl86

    Arcangl86 Newbie

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    True, but my point is more that people have a nuclear disaster fresh on their mind, and now is when the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is pushing for less regulation. It seems like an unwise choice to me.
     
  6. JackRT

    JackRT Flat earther waking up ... Supporter

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    My degree is in nuclear physics. I regard modern nuclear power reactors to be extremely safe if properly run. Chernobyl was a quite antique system and the operators were "playing" with it . We cannot afford another such disaster. We cannot afford to back off on regulations just so that corporations can increase their profits and politicians can look good in pandering to them.
     
  7. variant

    variant Happy Cat

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    It's an unwise choice regardless. Nuclear reactors are the kind of thing where the cost/benefit of regulation is clear.

    The pro nuclear reactor argument is harmed most thoroughly and most often by nuclear accidents, so it is in their (and everyone's) best interest that we can trust the system that regulates reactors.

    It's a better safe than sorry argument and it's a issue where there isn't a lot of trust. So, why should I be OK with building the next generation of nuclear reactors, when I can't be convinced that 40 years from now that everyone involved won't want to decrease vigilance because of a bit of profit margin?
     
  8. Arcangl86

    Arcangl86 Newbie

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    Oh I agree entirely. I meant more politically. Then again this administration has shown again and again they don't take the normal political calculations into account.
     
  9. variant

    variant Happy Cat

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    The Vladimir Lenin power station reactor#4 was inappropriately designed in many ways and lacked some key safety features that even antique western reactors have. Much of it's danger was inherent in the design because of the Soviet system wanting to run things cheaper. Even still, there are still 10 of these antiquated monsters running in the world, as far as I know without much incident.

    They certainly weren't "playing with it" exactly, they were, an inexperienced and inappropriately briefed night crew (20ish year old men with as little as 6 months experience) running a safety test under duress from the higher ups to get it complete, while an arrogant idiot (who was responsible for running the test), reacted to things not going to plan by badgering them into bypassing every safety precaution they had and relying on the emergency shut down system to keep them safe (which was also very sadly inappropriately designed).

    You have to go way out of your way to make a reactor do what happened at Chernobyl, it's not something regulations are meant to fix.

    Not letting inexperienced neophytes run complex tasks at the most dangerous reactors in the world is a good idea, but it's the kind of out of the box insanity that we can usually expect people not to do.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
  10. wing2000

    wing2000 E pluribus unum Supporter

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    Was this recommendation made due to budget cuts or some other external pressure?
     
  11. essentialsaltes

    essentialsaltes Stranger in a Strange Land

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    It's not quite clear from the article. If I had to speculate, we know the nuclear power industry has lobbied for this reduction in regulation, and Trump ran on deregulation. It's a match made in heaven.
     
  12. JackRT

    JackRT Flat earther waking up ... Supporter

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    Ironic isn't it that while the Trump government wants to deregulate the US nuclear industry it is at the same time trying hard to regulate the nuclear industries of Iran and North Korea.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2019
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