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March 16th, 2011
12:49 PM ET

Nuclear Power as a Source of Energy

With all that's happening in Japan, we want to know should nuclear power be used as a source of energy? Why or why not?

Please leave your comments here.

Filed under: Ali Velshi
soundoff (616 Responses)
  1. Rob

    Nuclear power should be on the table, but the direction of the US should be how do we build new age Reactors that are part of a larger plan to sunset the old ones we currently have. Safely, we can take steps forward to remove our dependancy on oil and coal.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:02 pm |
  2. Sean

    As an engineer; I believe the light-water reactors are outdated & incredibly dangerous. However; the pebble-bed reactors are actually quite safe and would have actually fell idle in japan's situation. But remember, there is an issue of spent nuclear fuel disposal.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
  3. Keith in Canada

    Even worst case there is a total melt down I expect under 4 dozen total fatalities. Three Mile Island turned out to be a 50% meltdown, and look how it turned out. Compare that to coal, 17,000 Americans per year according to a recent American Lung Association report and nuclear looks really safe.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
  4. amy

    isn't what is happening in Japan enough proof that nuclear power is a bad choice?

    March 16, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
  5. Sharon

    Well, only grown-ups should consider nuclear power generation. Our current governing "class" does not provide me with the confidence that the United States can finance, build and soberly manage dangerous public or private projects.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
  6. Rick Backman

    Nuclear energy is a lost cause, answer one question. No matter how strong we make the reactors, what do we do with the waste?

    March 16, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
  7. Christian


    New reactor designs are substantially better/safer than those currently in use in Japan. Don't let the coal lobby hijack this disaster as a means to prevent the advancement of nuclear power in the US.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
  8. gildas nkamgan

    ali i don't think we should use nuclear power for energie,imagine situation like this one in japan how we gonna do to content this.just use the natural source of energie is better

    March 16, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
  9. Camrin

    I've been behind the scenes of a Nuclea powerplant and the WORKERS will even tell you the cost of building and running a plant is higher than the benefits. Why do you think we haven't built any new ones?

    March 16, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
  10. Lkaplan

    No emphasis must be placed on solar and wind farms. The bar must be raised for any existing plants that they have authentic operational safety measures in place which are AT LEAST as strongly safe as those the Japanese reactors do not have– that is assume the absolute worst at the baseline of the current disaster. If the plants cannot insure this level of safety, they should be closed until they are.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
  11. fireofenergy

    Not the light water reactors (LWR) of which the U.S. has about 105. Instead, we should rely upon the molten salt reactors which can not explode or breach containment. Please search it...

    March 16, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
  12. Jim

    I think that society should rethink its use of nuclear energy. Clearly it is not a clean form of energy. I wish that we had better alternatives. I don't want to have to worry about getting radiation sickness or cancer. I think we should have learned our lesson from Chernobyl. We can't afford to be having nuclear exclusion zones all over the planet.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
  13. Ilya

    The nuclear power is an efficient source of energy. The coal plants put more radioactivity in the air and there are no other realistic alternatives. It should definitely be used, but the regulations need to be improved.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
  14. Ruth Vinson

    I am opposed to nuclear energy and always will be. As far as I know, an ideal way to dispose of radioactive waste has never been determined. We are witnessing only one kind of nuclear disaster. Many others are possible if not likely.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
  15. kim starr

    Nuclear energy is a dinosaur, it is time to move into 2100st century clean energy. also when nuclear gos bad it's not a little bad.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
  16. jason

    Hi Ali im going to say thats a BIG NO to more nuclear power it is an accident waiting to happen i live in tn and we have 3 plants close to where i live and i fear the worste from them in the future in the face of an earth quake or any natural disaster at all plus nfs of erwin are getting sued becuase of sick folks that have gotten cancer from or related to the nuclear plant i have 3 small kids and im thinking mainly about there future...thanks jason

    March 16, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
  17. Janice Rowe

    Just as the entire justice system fails if ONE wrongly convicted man or woman receives the death penalty, I believe that Nuclear Energy just isn't worth the risk when things go wrong. We can't control everything, certainly 9.0 earth quakes and tsunamis prove that. These Japanese plants are state of the art construction and look where we are today! As we all cling to the TV screens in days-long semi panic mode, praying that this meltdown doesn't happen, surely we can agree that the cost is too high.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  18. angel victoria!

    yes, of course. the advantages of using nuclear energy as a power source are well-documented. what is happening in japan ultimately will give the world much safer measures and technology to prevent like disasters.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  19. Dick

    Nuclear energy must be used. Historically, loss of life from nuclear energy is lower than other forms of energy. Unfortunately, there is no 100% safe, efficient energy source yet. Let's keep using the cleanest form we know of, nuclear.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  20. Jim Fairchild

    What would happen if they used liquid nitrogen on the rods at the nuclear power plant ??

    March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  21. Tom

    Absolutely we should. If it takes a 9.0 magnitude earthquake AND a tsunami to cause a possible containment breach in a modern nuclear reactor, I'd say that's a pretty safe way to generate electricity overall. If only the oil wells in the Gulf of Mexico had been so well constructed.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  22. Robyn Ruckman

    I dont believe nuclear power should be used at all. The Tesla Coil can provide all the energy we need and I dont understand why nobody is using it. Perhaps because theres no money to be made in free energy.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  23. Kirk

    Absolutely believe we should expand use of nuclear generation of electricity. Design of plants has improved over the 30-40 years since the Japanese facilities were built. New designs store enough"heavy" water above the reactor to allow gravity to drop water in the reactor and kill the reaction. Please do NOT over react and end an incredible alternative to fossil fuels.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  24. Debra Schneck

    Whatever is decided needs to be decided based on facts, the degree of US and plant preparedness, and science, not on fear-based thinking and misleading "news" reports.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  25. Keith in Canada

    This disaster is like Three Mile Island times 6. Nothing like Chernobyl. For the type of reactor it is, a 1960s design GE Mark 1, it is worse than the worst case imagined scenario, times 6. Still the fatalities will be less than 10% of last years single worst coal mine disaster.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  26. Sydney Blake (Ms.)

    My family lives in Croton-on-Hudson, which is near the INDIAN POINT NUCLEAR REACTOR in Westchester County, NY. How can there even be a question as to whether or not these things are safe? Are we all imbeciles? Of course they're safe–until something happens, like an accident, a terrorist attack, or a natural disaster.

    We have to get rid of them!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  27. Chet

    Yes for now. But if we cant find fail safe ways to operate them and dispose of the waste they create. Then we should be investing into alternative sources of power for our future instead. Theese could include wind,solar,hydro,and natural gas. All of which are very safe and green.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  28. Daniel Gruen

    From the unfolding catastrophe I think it's clear that nuclear power is not worth the risk of a meltdown and radiation leak across half the globe. If anything good can come out of this disaster hopefully it's the end of nuclear technology.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  29. kevin

    ...these reactors are NOT safe-can not be made safe-the manufacture of radioactive waste for cheep power is the saddest thing the human species has ever done to itself.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
  30. Keith in Canada

    All remaining GE Mark 1 reactors should be retired from service. For one thing, they all lack the aircraft resistant anti-terrorist shield.

    But even after this disaster in Japan, with this ancient obsolete nuclear reactor, nuclear energy remains by far the safest form of energy per kW, safer even than wind power.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  31. tom merrigan

    Nuclear power already is a source of energy for EVERYONE: It's called the SUN.
    tom merrigan
    Maryville, M

    March 16, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  32. Ken Saban

    It is very unfortunate that the current nuclear crisis happening in Japan will insight negative public opinion in North America toward nuclear power generation.

    This at a time when America and the planet are in desperate need of this near perfect energy source and the economic potential derived from building more power plants.

    Sadly the reactors in Japan are American designs that have the inherent characteristic to become a runaway train of nuclear reaction.

    These reactors function by fixing two nuclear materials in close proximity to each other.

    A far safer design exists that requires three materials. One of the materials is a liquid that can simply be removed to stop the reaction. Or another liquid can be added to stop the reaction. A third measure of simply sub-merging metal rods into the liquid will also stop the reaction.

    This design relies on far less systems.

    Unbelievably these reactors can use the spent fuel created by typical nuclear plants or old weapons and don't require enriched uranium that poses a weapons threat.

    To learn more check out CANDU reactor on Wikipedia.

    Ken Saban

    March 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  33. David Mcallister

    Nuclear disasters, meltdowns, radioactivity and the nuclear bomb all have one thing in common; Nuclear "FISSION". What all nuclear power plants currently use.


    Nuclear "FUSION" = NO radioactivity, does not meltdown, does not produce material for bombs and is a thousand times more efficient than fission.

    Do not rule out nuclear power, we need to end the use of "fission" power and exponentially increase education, support and research into "nuclear FUSION".

    March 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  34. Keith in Canada

    A far bigger radiation threat to Americans is the poor regulation, licensing, and reporting requirements of nuclear medicine, including specialized CT scans and gamma knives. People actually die from the poor regulation of this equipment.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  35. Dr. Jewel Crawford

    No! Hell no!! Why are we putting ourselves at risk for death and horrible diseases that our children are even more susceptible to? We've known of the dangers of nuclear for years, now the worst fears are being realized. The same money spent on lethat nuclear can go to clean solar and wind which will be safe and create new green jobs as well. I'm sick of these dumb, money grubbing sociopaths making decisions that put everyone's life at risk.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  36. C Davis

    Not the current outdated bomb capable plans that are being used – There is a cheaper to build, safer slow-burn nuclear alternative that has no chance of meltdown or bomb making capability that was government funded, developed then defunded and shut down in the mid70's when the US chose the "dual purpose power and bomb capable plants.
    The plans were hid in archives that only recently were "rediscovered".

    Maybe it's time to reconsider what in retrospect was the far better option and leave the military-industrial complex preferences out of this time.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
  37. brian from canada

    Yes as long as all precautions are taken because it is one of the cleanest energy source there is! but we have to remember that no matter what we do we can not prevent everything from happening, we have to determined if the pro's out way the con's! i think it does. after almost 50 years of using nuclear energy we have only had 2 major problems in the world it could have been worse. much worse!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
  38. Cherie

    It is suggested that the earthquake and tsunami are clear reminders that we humans have NO ability to withstand the power of nature. When a nuclear facility company representative ,stands on the beach and tells me that the San Onofre Power Plant is absolutely safe, not only is that statement unbelievable, it is arrogant. If we have the money to invest in nuclear power plants, which have a strong lobby in Washington, then surely we have the money to invest in clean energy such as solar and wind power, which have a weak lobby in Washington. Gee is there any connection? Under no conditions should we be building nuclear power plants. Check the history. Obviously, it is beyond us to safely control leakage, even under the best conditions – or is collateral damage okay? My heart aches for those workers who are trying to save Japan. NO NUCLEAR PLANTS

    March 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
  39. Wendy Legge

    I truly believe that this should be seriously be looked at as a sign to completely removed all nuclear plants in the United States. Solar energy is clean, is created from the earth and can be used for every person in the United States. I've wondered why it hasn't been used already to tell you the truth. Why use something as deadly as nuclear energy? Why build it for that matter on the very line of an earthquake zone in the first place? I live in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, less than 10 miles from 3 mile island. I was in my senior year of high school when 3 mile island happened. We, as a family, did nothing. We couldn't. My mother was a school teacher and my father worked for the federal government. Since then, over the years, my Grandmother died of colon cancer, my brother died of bladder cancer, my mother died of lung cancer and other neighbors have died of lung cancer. We could never prove this is the reason why, but these health risks alone are enough to end this kind of energy. Frying all of the surrounding states from a nuclear meltdown is a BIG reason to stop this.
    It is still existing because of POLITICAL reasons? There are too many hands in the money pot to get rid of it. Someone is getting rich, just like everything else that harms us. Our people in America DO NOT care about anyone but THEMSELVES. That being do the math. Nuclear energy will NEVER cease unfortunately. We all just must have faith in God that he will have his hands wrapped around us whether we are chosen to live through this....or die through this.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  40. CrazyGirl

    NO, nuclear power is not a good source of energy. I am from the west coast where the Whoops plant was built ( partially, they ran out of money) its on a fault line. They say the west coast is long over due for a big quake and all I can say is thank god they ran out of money. This world needs to wake up. There is clean energy and big corporations and our goverment continue to fight it at the expense of the world. I have heard the Japan is way ahead on earthquake prep. but did they not think of the of what would happen with nuc's plants on fault lines. My heart goes out to the Japanese people this is the biggest tragdey. But if there is one good outcome it will be no more nuclear energy. Otherwise we are doomed to repeat history.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  41. Gary

    There are inherent dangers with all types of power, mine collapse, water pollution, air pollution, however the risks should be carefully weighed out. How many wind turbines would it take to produce the same amount of power as a nuclear power plane? What we have learned over the past 2000 years is not being utilized to the best of our abilities in my opinion...all possibilities should be analyzed carefully and the least evasive feasible option should be the path taken. Lowest cost can sometimes have hidden cost...human lives!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  42. Andrew C.

    Nuclear Power should not be used until we have the technology to instantly neutralize radioactivity, and dispose of in a safe manner. If Nuclear power is the only alternative to meet demand, design and build it with all of mother natures threats in mind. To build something so dangerous, safety should be top priority at any cost. Building these structures in a seismic zone should be built to stand up to the largest possible seismic activity, and not to a threshold of 8.0 as an example. As well, they should be built inland a specific distance, away from Tsunami threats. Pipelines or canals for sea water could be built to provide all their needs for cooling. Look at Panama Canal? It is within our abilities.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
  43. Christopher Parham

    Governments around the world could build nukes atop a smoking volcano and they would swear it was safe! After all... they build them on shifting sands or in Japan's case, shifting countries and tell us they are safe. Evidently, government officials have never heard of "Murphy's Law". Well, something has gone wrong, and gone wrong in a big way!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
  44. Lamar

    It is unfortunate with what happen in Japan, but we have to remember that there are several factors that lead to this problem the earthquake and then the tsunami damage to the power plants.
    I support nuclear power, because it is clean and inexpensive to produce, therefore, it is the best way to go. However, I believe that building close to the coast or a seismic are is foolish.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  45. Ed MacNeil

    Nuclear power is a clean source of energy that should be used in a responsible way.
    Using the same methodology that has made air travel the safest way to move about the earth will assure that nuclear plants maintain the highest standards of safety. Investigate thoroughly and learn from incidents and accidents.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  46. Don

    Yes we need nukes.But at the the same time most nukes life has come and gone,but are still on line because the gov. gave them extension on there on there intendend life.Close the ones on faults and biuld new.They had to make there money if there past the intended use years

    March 16, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
  47. Deadra Rice

    There are five reasons to why I believe Nuclear Power should be used as a source of electricity.
    1) It is clean energy and we are able to get off Coal and Natural Gas
    2) Its cheaper to use
    3) We are able to heat our homes with Nuclear Power without having to mine coal and generate natural gas. As a granddaughter and great granddaughter of Pennsylvania coalminers I believe it is dirty and hurts more people who mine for coal and causes more deaths and injuries each year. This is why I like the idea of using Nuclear Power.
    4) The more people use Nuclear Power the better it is for us to see the future as being cleaner and environmental friendly.
    5) Finally, Nuclear Power should be a necessity in most cities where there are no fault lines. There is a safety issue like Japan that needs to be monitored.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
  48. Al

    I feel we should have a little nuclear plant in each car . Some day we will be out of fossil fuels, until then we will conitnue to fight over oil.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  49. Mary Beth Hunter

    Human beings cannot get ANYTHING 100% right 100% of the time – that is what nuclear power requires. 'Playing with fire ' is a major understatement.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
  50. Gissell

    what is more important for the US. A nuclear source of energy that will provide energy in a short term, or a source of energy that will affect human being in the long term. We should be proactive, and think about pros and cons before we make a decision on nuclear energy.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  51. Rose Hayes

    The U.S. should not go forward with nuclear power until the nuclear industry develops the technology to neutralize spent nuclear fuel and the 60,000 tons of nuclear waste stored on the 104 commercial reactor sites has been processed and neutralized. There are many alterrnatives to nuclear energy and although they are not all desirable they are safer than nuclear energy and waste. It is not true that nuclear energy is safe, cheap, and clean when you add up the total costs: plant failures, nuclear energy production, and nuclear waste management.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  52. Jen409

    I think a lot of people still need to rely that kind of energy, so it would be a very bad decision to shut down all nuclear plants right now just because of what's happening in Japan. I think doing that would just result in causing even more suffering instead of making things better for anyone.

    I do think that lessons can and should be learned from Japan's problems, though, so that more efforts can be made to research and upgrade the older levels of technology to make things better, and make all of our power plants as safe, efficient, and clean as humanly possible.

    For example, I have been interested in the design of Canada's CANDU models, but it would take quite a lot of money to upgrade all the existing plants or replace them entirely with new ones as needed.

    And when the anti-nuclear people are doing everything they can to block all funding for new plants, that just makes the problem worse, because that's a big reason why we are still stuck with so much outdated equipment and housing structures that probably should have been renovated by now.

    Ultimately, nuclear power is not going to disappear any time soon, so the best course of action is to be smart about it and make responsible, rational decisions about how it should be regulated and upgraded to prevent accidents.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  53. Eric

    Should Nuclear Power be used? That's a great topic that I would assume will have a plethora of opinions. With all of the negatives to this source of power, I think we should use other means. That's easy to say, however, some things are much easier said, than done. I feel that big business won't let that happen, as well as the government. Just like cars having the ability to run on solar power nearly 20 years ago, big business will always get into the way and the governemnt will always side with big business regardless of what they tell us during an election year.

    The problem with this world in this day in time, is that people are more interested in lining thier pockets both in the private sector, as well as elected representatives in the government, then doing what's right for humanity, as well as for our planet.

    The funny part about this, is that even if we did change to alternative power, it would still create jobs, it would still produce revenue and the rich would remain rich. They would just be using other sources of power and fuel, other than oil or nuclear power. Ones that would be better and have less negatives to humans and our environment.

    We are getting close to the point of no return. We cannot be like children who won't change thier behavior until it's too late and they get into trouble. This is not a situation where we get a bunch of "chances" to make up for what we've done to this planet. Changes must be made globally and the "powers to be" need to broaden thier thinking and thier priorities. If that doesn't happen, we will soon reap what we've sewed for all of these years of Big Business determining our fate.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
  54. Ashoke deb

    Ali ,I am not in favor of building any new nuclear plant &at the same time I like to see, somebody keep eye on safety system of existing plant.
    People may think Nuclear plant is not producing any pollution but look at the incidence of blood cancer,depressed bonemarrow function & other DNA altered diseases in recent year
    Renewable energy like solar,wind,sea,biofuel etc should be our future source of energy.
    People like you who is infront of Tv screen can motivate the people.


    Ash deb

    March 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
  55. Christopher Parham

    I was insulted when I heard this type of nuclear energy called "clean energy". Who do they think they are kidding? This type of nuclear energy produces some of the deadliest waste on Earth and it remains that way for hundreds if not thousands of years. What a tragedy we are leaving the future inhabitants of this planet! 57,000 square miles around Chernobyl is now uninhabitable. Not to mention the tens of thousands of human beings and their children whom suffered. Some looking like something out of Frankenstein! God have mercy on us all!!!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
  56. John E. Hendrix, PhD.

    Regarding nuclear power. I see the current situation much like a family that is planning to fly to Grandma's house, but decides to drive after an airliner crash even though it is safer to fly. The constant drip, drip or auto deaths are ignored. An occasional nuclear accident gets much coverage by you people, as it should, but the drip, drip, drip of damage caused by carbon dioxide and other pollutants caused by carbon fuels gets limited coverage, and caused little concern in the public. Continuing with carbon fuels is like driving rather than flying when it comes to the safety issue.
    John E. Hendrix PhD.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
  57. Christopher Parham

    Japan is on the brink of nuclear catastrophe and tragedy! Let this be a lesson to the citizens of the world! NO FISSION NUKES!!! Doing the same thing over and over while expecting a different outcome is a form of insanity!!!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:42 pm |
  58. harold wallen

    I hope japan can take this horrific event and show the world how to rebuild there city's with everything oriented to chach the winter sun and, powed buy the sun! NO MORE NUKE'S!!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
  59. Cherie

    Just wanted to add this information from Calpirg: Take just one example here in California: the PG&E-owned Diablo Canyon plant, built near a fault line in San Luis Obispo, which started generating electricity in 1985. It was built to withstand a 7.5 magnitude earthquake, but what they didn’t know then is that the plant is located just 1,800 feet — the length of 6 football fields — from a shoreline fault that wasn’t discovered until 2008.

    Nuclear Power safe? Do we really know as much as we think we do?

    March 16, 2011 at 1:52 pm |
  60. Christopher Parham

    There is no such thing as earthquake proof, tsunami proof, hurricane proof, tornado proof, or flood proof! No matter mans ingenuity... Mother nature always wins! She reigns supreme!!!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:53 pm |
  61. Michael Stavros

    Nuclear power is NOT an acceptable source of energy. As we have seen with the Titanic, the Space Shuttle Challenger, 3 Mile Island and Chernobyl, there are no absolutes and what's not supposed to happen, CAN happen. For years, industry officials have been dismissing concerns and state that Nuclear Power is absolutely safe with all it's back-up systems. The event in Japan has exposed their lack of credibility. We need to wake up and reject the unacceptable risk of lighting a monster that can not be extinguished.

    And let us not forget that there is still no plan for the long term storage of highly radioactive plutonium – the by product of nuclear power. We are leaving these spent fuel rods for our children and their grandchildren's grandchildren (and beyond that) to contain and guard. How ironic, that we are leaving our descendents with the job of baby sitting the monsters we have created.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
  62. Ian Winner

    Nuclear energy should definitely NOT be the future of this country. There are not only the disasters to consider but also the problems associated with waste storage and uranium mining. Actual fossil-free fuel should be what this country invests in.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
  63. Lynn Jones

    I get the feeling that the Nuclear Energy plants in the US may not be checked closely enough as to how bad it could be if an earthquake as strong as the New Madrid of 1811. Everything that has happened in Japan must be used for determining US policy. This is a major event–we must learn from it.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:57 pm |
  64. Luis Myers

    Nuclear power is a reliable source of energy, according to the EPA it's currently responsible for about 19% of the electricity in the U.S. Nuclear power plants emit no greenhouse gases or acidic discharges which are byproduct of coal burning power plants. In fact nuclear power plants produce less radioactive discharge than coal burning plants.

    However nuclear power is far from perfect. Although nuclear power plants emit no greenhouse gases the mining of uranium, uranium enrichments, and transportation of uranium are responsible for a considerable amount of fossil fuel emissions. Nevertheless, the mining and transportation of coal possesses an equal disadvantage.
    However nuclear power plants do produce considerable risk to water source which can become contaminated with heavy metals and salts (water discharge from a nuclear power plants are con considered radioactive).

    Nuclear power's greatest disadvantage may ultimately be that in many circumstance of negligence or a natural catastrophe an atomic disaster which is not likely but plausible may occur. Thus, threatening the life and quality of life of those who it has provided with electricity or any who simply resided within the affected zone animal and human.

    In conclusion I would like to reiterate that while nuclear power has many advantage is posses equal disadvantages. And while nuclear power may be viewed as evil by some it is not. It is a reliable and comparatively clean source of energy that is made necessity due to our power hungry way of life. If we wish to completely remove this threat we must only look at ourself and our habits reducing our power consumption and investing in cleaner alternatives such and wind and solar power. (Go Democrats, kick anti-union pro-dictatorial Republican ass, I apologize for this propaganda)

    March 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
  65. Luis Myers

    correction ...affected zone, animal and human alike.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:01 pm |
  66. John Nicholson

    As you see from Japan, old reactors are dangerous. One the water behind dams in the US has to be worried about also. For example, here in Texas we have Comanche Peak which depends on water behind a dam to cool the rods in the reactors. If the dam breaks, the same type of event that Japan is seeing now would happen here. And I do mean here.

    New reactors cost more than the assembly of solar panel production plant. This means that while both can make about 1 GW of power in one year the next year of power production the solar production is up to 2 GW of power, and 3 GW for 3 years, and so on. The cost saving of solar is good enough to build an assembly of batteries production plant. And this means that the solar power can be held for later use when clouds or nighttime happens.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:02 pm |
  67. Christopher Parham

    Deadly exposure? Can't get within 50 yards of the reactors? Now would be the time to use rotary wing drones and robots!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
  68. Sherie

    Nuclear waste is the greater problem,e.g. reactor 4.Solve the waste problem,and then we will talk.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm |
  69. marcia greer

    I think not. This is playing out like the BP spill; there's just no way to forecast just how bad things can get when we use this risky source of energy.
    Poor Japan: First, they taught the world that nuclear weapons should never be used. Now, they're teaching the world that nuclear-based energy should never be used.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  70. Rob American Horse

    No i do not think that we should use it for energy. it may be cleaner energy but its far to dangerous to use Japan is an example of why we should not use it as an energy. but what can we do or say our Government is going to do it anyway no matter what the people say

    March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  71. Roger Snyder

    Nuclear power is a flawed failed technology. We need to stop building new plants, and move away from the current use of nuclear power.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  72. Mark E

    There is not enough fail safes for nuclear power plants. We are always told how Cheap the power is,how clean it is and how safe it is. Tell that to me now after what I've seen in Japan.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  73. gargamel

    We need to look at the cause and build safely but for the short term nuclear is a better option for the US than importing oil from enemies. For all we know right now, this was due to the tsunami waters which were not accounted for in the design. So, logically, we would look at reactors that would be susceptible to a simliar natural catastrophe and not make broad judgements about nuclear as a power source.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  74. Daniel Edling

    Yes ! If we didn't use it we would have to use much more oil or coal that would leave pollutants. If we use Nuclear energy and we maintain it (as in protect it against every variable we can think of) then we should implement it more and continue to expand and make it more efficient.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  75. Tim

    Absolutely! Nuclear power is still the safest form of energy in existence, and frankly, despite all the hype and fear mongering of the overall press, the Japanese reactors have *still* not caused harm to anyone, and there is still doubt if they will. Yes, the Chernobyl accident was harmful, but that is not a condemnation of nuclear power, but rather of flawed Soviet reactor design. TMI? Another basically minimal event that was handled properly, that the media whipped up into something is wasn't. If folks consider only the facts and the physics, the choice is obvious. If folks want to base decisions on ignorance and irrational fear, we all might as well live in caves . . .

    March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  76. Chidube

    We need to stop working against nature and learn to use nature as a more reliable source of energy. This crisis shows us the forces of energy mother nature is stronger.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  77. Robert Marley

    I believe in energy independence as much as the next guy however there is no gain in national security or the health and safety of people in this country from it. The question to ask when building one of the facilities would be can you guarantee Americans safety in any radical or unusual natural event. I am no expert but since this technology is not perfect then i would say that the answer would be undoubtedly no. Let us be heard.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  78. David Wallrich

    Please look in depth about LFTR (lifter) reactors. would appear to be the answer to the worlds energy needs safely.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  79. TomV

    Of course it should. Does it pose risks? Obviously. Is it costly? Of course.

    But it is the bridge technology we need to move from fossil fuels to (someday) fusion.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  80. Valerie

    No, nuclear power should ABSOLUTELY NOT be used as a power source. We have no real control over it, as has been amply demonstrated by the current situation in Japan. Our scientists are so arrogant thinking they know how to contain problems but events such as the one unfolding in Japan have proven them to be wrong. It's time to begin putting our efforts and our money into developing green power sources.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  81. Steve Beynon

    A few years ago a number of science sites reported the development of pelletized nuclear plants. The projected advantage of these plants was that they could not melt down and had virtually no nuclear waste. Where is the latest research on these and why are they not being cosdered to replace the hot core based plants
    Qualicum Beach BC

    March 16, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  82. Mark

    Why is no one mentioning that there is a shortage of nuclear fuel? A 2007 MIT report stated that the shortage of nuke fuel will limit production of nuke power. Said fuel will also become more expensive as supplies dwindle.

    A British report said there was only 50 years of fuel available to power existing reactors. Building more reactors will take years off that supply.

    It appears that existing nuke plants will all be mothballed in 50 years due to a lack of fuel sources. Why build more? Why pretend that nuclear is the "power of the future?" Why ignore this fact when discussing nuclear energy? Why invest billions in a technology that has no future?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  83. B Roach

    Not real sure why we are even discussing this but NO. Wind – sun and geo thermal are already here and non-polluting to the earth. IF we build a nuclear plant we have already set ourselves up for failure. Everything ages – everything wears out – nuclear power plants are subject to mother nature which is unpredictable. If a windmill falls over – put another one there – nevada has enough useless land available to power the ENTIRE USA – sun shines there 300 days a year – geothermal locations are all over the USA. We already have what hundreds? of aging nuclear power plants all over america setting us all up for catastropic consequences including terrorism

    March 16, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  84. John Bowes

    Nuclear Power is probably still the safest and cleanest form of energy we have. No one predicted a 9.0 eathquake and a tsunami to hit the coast at the same time. Continue to require building codes to make the buildings able to withstand this type of catastrophe or we will forever be dependant on foreign oil. All we ever do is talk about reducing our dependance on oil but nothing is getting done.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  85. Paul

    Absolutely. There are risks with all energy sources. Nuclear is the best option that we have for the near term, 25 to 50 years. What we are missing is a clear vision for the long term. Get Washington off their butts and put together an energy policy for the long term.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  86. Ron

    As a former naval officer who was educated in the Navy's nuclear po wer program it is obvious to me that nuclear power can be made safe- the Navy's record regarding this issue speaks for itself.
    What we need is more oversight and testing of the backup systems on a regular basis- like Adm Rickover used to do with the submarine service.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  87. danilo ramos

    Yes we do need it. It is clean and cheap but we should find a way how to make it safer.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  88. Rissa

    Nuclear power should not be used as a source of energy. The devastation that can result could affect generations of earth's inhabitants. There are too many sources of energy that are green or at least much safer and easier to control to justify using nuclear energy that very obviously is unsafe.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  89. matthew

    The use of nuclear power stations is not cost efficient and the storage of spent materials after use continues to cost a great deal,...coal as a energy system is cheaper and cleaner.
    Human kind has other alternative energy sources that are in development we must focus on these.
    The use of coal is limited to the amount of the resource and it destroys nature from extraction.
    Ther is technology that uses garbage as a fuel source,..sounds like two birds with one stone.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  90. Laura

    NO!!! Man-made energy sources create man-made things like cancer! What a shame that we have created it but we can't cure it. How about the SUN?? It's free!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  91. Andrea Jones

    Nuclear power shouldn't be used for anything. We are all looking on in this desperate turn of events with absolutely no power to do anything. Nuclear power can not be controlled once released. Since we live on this force of nature called Earth, we can't guarantee total safety.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  92. Scott Hooten

    No, the danger and cost are not worth it. With any other source of energy the worst case scenario effects will only last months to years, and only will effect the local area, with nuclear energy it's decades to centuries and effects entire regions. The free markets have spoken no one will build these thing without government backing and funds.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
  93. zona jones


    Can't we take a really big hint?

    We as a human species obviously do not understand the problems and ramifications with using nuclear energy. Our experts have very little capability, as we are seeing, to deal with usual and unusual challenges and damages to nuclear power plants. We are literally playing with a kind of fire that we not equipped to handle. Until we are smarter, I think finding better ways to boil water. We must see and appreciate that the death and destruction and terrible toxicities involved with nuclear power are too much for us to handle. Use alternatives–wind, solar, water energy and more– and perfect them and adapt them for our safe use.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  94. Nina d'Alessandro

    I'm writing in response to the question as to whether the US should pursue nuclear power, given the recent tragic events in Japan.
    No, I do not believe we should pursue nuclear power. How can lobbyists and our government rationalize expanding our nuclear power? Only by resolutely adopting a position of denial. We have seen so many signs over decades of the tremendous risk this energy source poses to all of us. We have the opportunity to adapt other sources: wind power, solar power. . . I grew up near the Indian Point nuclear power plant 35 miles up river from New York City. I shudder to think what will happen when the long-predicted northeast coast earthquake occurs. I see what I can only interpret as a sad, blind arrogance on the part of Americans who believe we can continue to use nuclear power without paying a very severe price.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  95. Paul D

    In my opinion, yes, we should continue to utilize nuclear energy sources. The events in, and around Japan, are indeed a tragic series of epic failures, but with current technologies available to us, nuclear is overall the cleanest option, for our ever growing electrical needs.

    Japan reminds us to rethink our safety nets involved with such things...* hours of battery life should be extended to 24 hours. water proof the back up generators...stay away from BWR (boiling water reactors). Also, take the older reactors off line, and better secure the "spent" fuel chambers.

    It also would be perhaps a good idea to set them up like Hanford in Washington State, put the plants in remote locations, for an added safety measure, and limit how close cities and towns can be to these plants... just in case.

    ALL of the Nuclear accidents combined have contributed less to environmental impact overall, than one days worth of coal and diesel fired power-plants.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  96. Dolores S.

    I believe no new Nuclear plants should be built , UNTIL, this disaster has been totally investigated. Not enough of the facts are known at this time. IF THERE IS A PROBLEM WITH THIS PARTICULAR TYPE of facility, we must first fix all other ones of this kind, BEFORE we add any more. THEN all new facilities must pass the test of the BEST, SAFEST Nuclear plants designed.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  97. David

    I think the obvious choice for the United States is Natural Gas.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  98. Doug T

    There are 442 power producing reactors in the world. A storm damaged the Japanese reactors. We need to look at the safeguards for each location. Keep building new reactors, and plan for worst-case scenarios.

    We're running out of oil, solar-wind is less than 1% of US energy supply... hardly measurable on a world wide basis. Nukes need to be here to stay. They are an unlimited power supply.... a cheap power rate.

    The US and world arer short of energy.... where do we come up with what we need for immediate needs and the future.

    Coal? Wind? Solar? Right..... Nukes are the only magor power potential.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  99. Mike

    Nuclear power can include Fusion. The Polywell fusion reactor, if developed, is shut down by flipping a switch. No radioactive waste is generated ever. Fuel is readily available and easily obtainable.

    Our government needs to be funding this project! Check out the Google Talk with the late Dr. Bussard.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  100. jim cottrill

    No, enough of using an uncontrollable source for energy. I would much rather use ocean tidal methods for power along with wind mills.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  101. Mike

    I believe the United States should use Nuclear Power as a continued source of energy. There is no reason why a tragedy like what is going on in Japan should be used as a reason not to use it. The Japan troubles are a perfect storm of tragedies that rarely happen. Wind power is a good way to add to the grid but is unreliable. Nuclear energy is reliable and is clean. As the United States grows, there is growing demand for energy which cannot be fulfilled with wind power alone.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  102. Francis Vandenberg

    Nuclear power should be used. It can be used safely. One accident every 10-15 years is not too bad of a risk. The problem in Japan is a problem caused by two extreme natural events that cannot be planned for.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  103. Sally

    I will never be convinced that nuclear power is safe. There will always be a threat of warfare, terrorism, geological threats. The concrete walls which were supposed to keep the radiation contained now have cracks. The spent fuel supply can not be stored safely, and where are the storage areas going to be, and how many will be needed in the future? What are the next generations supposed to do with the problems we leave them? How about pouring some hard cash into manufacturing and development of alternative power sources: water, wind, solar? After all, a bomb on a solar panel has a very different effect than on a nuclear power plant. Put some of the thousands of unemployed Americans to work manufacturing solar energy materials, prices will come down on these systems, people will go back to work, the earth will be protected.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  104. Tina Tinley

    I think that they should evaluate where it should be produced a little more closely. With Tsunami's happening more frequently, we have to address if it is worth it or not for saftey purposes and where is a safe place for these facilities.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  105. Trevor

    NO! There are so many other sources of energy that are safe for the environment and do not create harmful by products, Geothermal energy would power the earths energy needs 100 times over

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  106. Robert

    No way. Collectively, including foreign governments, we are not responsible enough to maintain this technology in a safe and reliable manner. Not only in unstable countries, but also in the US where the mighty dollar often drives decisions.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  107. Lynn Jones

    To answer your question concerning should nuclear power be used as a source of energy? No it shouldn't but since it has been utilized it isn't much we can do now since it something that can't be destroyed, just waiting to destroy us. What we can do at this point is stop using the nuclear as a source of energy and utilize other methods which are not harmful to mankind. What is happening over in Japan should be not only a eye opener to us, but a wake up call to stop using this material for energy...

    March 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  108. Alan

    Not unless and until all safety, storage, and disposal issues have been addressed. There are other forms of clean energy technology which we can develop.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  109. Noel Garber

    Nuclear power is essential to society's energy needs. That which is based on crude oil has many byproducts that are dangerous to the environment. Solar- and wind-based power are simply not practical from an economic perspective. Nuclear power, when used responsibly, is much safer to the environment. Addressing the problem of nuclear waste, when safely contained the radiation will eventually dissipate and completely disappear.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  110. Dan

    Yes is should be used as long as it is highly monitored and used as a stepping stone for better solutions. This would help cut oil and coal power planets saving people and the enviroment but nuclear is not the final solution it is a stepping stone.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  111. John

    Yes within reason. PWR (pressurized water reactors) have been used for 50+ years in the US Navy with zero accidents. The problem in Japan is due to them using a BWR (boiling water reactor). This saves money in manufacture, but it is inherently less safe. The manufacturers know this (both GE and Westinghouse), but cost seems to have been the driving factor in Japan.

    Safe designs exist and should be used.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  112. Travis Davis

    I personally think that nuclear power shouldn't be used in the U.S. or any other country for that matter. I live in Tulsa, OK and the nearest plant to us is in Kansas. . .KANSAS! tornado alley much? One monster tornado comes along and the "Great Plains" are gone. no more farm land, bible belt, funeral-protesting churches. The end. everyone dies. hmmmmmmm???

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  113. Avery

    Yes, alternative and renewable energy sources such as wind or solar may be attractive for a variety of reasons but they simply cannot provide enough energy to supply our demands. Nuclear energy is cleaner and safer than oil and natural gas, freak accidents such as what happened in Japan can be avoided through smart design and careful engineering.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  114. Sam

    Yes nuclear energy is a very valuable resource, as long as it's regulated. It is the cleanest source of energy compared to all the energy sources we use daily in the US. People think it's not safe, and that couldn't be further from the truth. If it wasn't safe, why would the US military use it to power many of our battleships, subs, and aircraft carriers? And to answer the problem of "waste" can be answered by using the waste in our weapons stockpile. But not very much is needed to power a great amount of things.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  115. Jason

    No. America is sitting on one of the biggest super volcano's in the world,why don't we make some geothermal power.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  116. Pam

    We need to stop being so paranoid about nuclear energy. Automobiles cause more deaths & injuries in one year than nuclear power plants have in decades of use. Are we going to ban cars unless we can absolutely promise they won't cause deaths? Yeah, sure.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  117. Ed Buryn

    Nuclear power is beyond man's ability to safely control. Period, end of matter. These radioactive materials are deadly poisonous for periods of time far longer than human civilization has existed. Given both the scale of natural earth changes and the proven volatility of human society (wars, terrorism, instability, greed), the is NO WAY that nuclear power will prove safe in the long run. Unfortunately, the profit motive for corporations and the wealthy will override public safety and when disaster strikes it will be too late for the innocent victims, namely the human race.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  118. Patricia Domingo

    No! There are too many ways to maintain our lifestyles without the nuclear waste problem. I am bothered by the lack of mention on CNN or elsewhere of the problem of the radiation in Japan now getting in ground water and food chain, which inevitably gets around the world. These substances can be dangerously radioactive for a long time. And for those people who say that radiation is natural, we get it all the time: yes, it is, and it accounts for some percentage of skin cancers and other cancers in the human population!! If we don't learn from this disaster and start investing seriously in energy efficiency and renewables, I am afraid we are in for a very tough future.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  119. Kelly Boyle

    no. There is so much proof of increased numbers of cancer by every nuclear energy plant for people that are downwind of that plant. It doesn't matter how much security is used. Waste is toxic for 1000 years and the enormous cost that is passed down to future generations is unknown and dangers of all of the waste build up that is sitting outside of all nuclear plants, because the cost of building underground storage is way too high. France has come to the conclusion already that nuclear is too expensive and is now looking to solar. Solar is great and now battery storage for night use is available.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  120. James Bowen

    Show me a instance where nuclear fuels have been extracted and refined without polluting the neighborhood and the neighbors, then I might think about endorsing nuclear power generation.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  121. Bill Myers (Painted Post, NY)

    I think Nuclear energy is a great source of energy when there are responsible people overseeing every aspect of it...from the building of the plant to the storage of the spent rods...Now the hard part, finding responsible people.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  122. Elyce Klein

    With all of the downsides of nuclear power including possible meltdowns, nuclear proliferation and the environmental damage from uranium mining, why don't we invest in conservation and implementing the many alternative non carbon producing solutions which are now available to meet our energy needs. Just like we are trying to phase our nuclear weapons because they are just too lethal to the human race, we should phase out nuclear energy. An economy based on renewables is coming and it will be a great boon to the world.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  123. Danielle Sorro

    I have honestly not been a fan of nuclear power but as long as the safety standards are increased then I am fine with then. We just need to be responsible with how we build, location, and equipment used to monitor the plant. After this event in Japan this will allow us to be able to upgrade our nuclear power plant safety otherwise if the united states leaves the plants the way they currently are, then that will be foolish.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  124. Vince

    Absolutely! learn from the failures and go forward!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  125. Zack

    Absolutely we should be embracing Nuclear power. The dangers are often egregiously overstated, as in the comment of the Gentleman/woman who spoke of "billions of gallons of Nuclear waste".

    For numbers to be meaningful, they should have some basis in fact, and not be based on pure emotion and fear.

    Oil and coal fired plants have pumped MANY tons of carcinogenic agents into our air, and continue to do so on a daily basis. While admittedly, nuclear waste in a concern, it is not an issue that can not be addressed and, I believe, solved.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  126. Dave

    We no longer burn coal as we did in the past now we burn gas.
    Give up the Nuclear Energy and we will lubricated by the oil producers – Royally!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  127. J. BLECKLEY

    ALI, would it not be more sensible for the Government to spend the BILLIONS (mayble TRILLIONS) of dollars presently being spent on nuclear energy efforts, in providing FREE "roof-top" solar panels FOR EVERY AMERICAN HOME & STRUCTURE, in lieu of placing its citizens in potentional danger?
    This would probably be the solution IF there were not "money and profit" involved in Nuclear Energy efforts.
    The goal should be PROVIDING ENERGY, not "making money" at the expense of "safety threats" to our citizens! This would provide thousands of jobs for our citizens and solve an increasing problem of energy supply as well as unemployment resolution.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  128. Deborah Crosby

    Nuclear power is safe, economical, and replaces oil. It does all of these thing unless mother nature puts her 2 cents in (earthquakes, fires, mud slides, tsunamis, etc.) , or a terrorist gets in and does damage, or a hundred other things that could happen we haven't thought of. Why don't we use wind, solar, or the many new green options? They can be put into use faster than the 10 yrs. it takes to build a nuclear plant.
    No, I don't think we should use nuclear to get our power.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  129. scott stewart

    Nuclear power is a strong source of energy and until we can improve other sources it is very much needed and it is safe. There are less incidents with problems with nuclear power over coal mine accidents and oil spills. It can be very safe if heavily monitored and do more inspections on plants for any potential problems and having a strong board of engineers who work to develop even more safety procedures and minimizing any potential problems.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  130. Jordan Geeting

    Of course nuclear power should still be used. Just because people can referance a few instances of accidents and disasters doesn't mean we should rule out nuclear power entirely. Oil spill anyone? Nuclear power is a great source of power, it is the companies that own the plants that should be watched more closely.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  131. mark

    until they find a way to take care of the waste other than stuffing it in an hole and forgetting it...NO!! I'd rather they work on solar,wind, and fusion over fission reactors.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  132. Josh

    Yes! Sure, there are radiological concerns. There are procedures and protocols in place to minimize exposure to the general public. People that are against nuclear power are trying to tell me that a worst of the worst case scenario in Japan is grounds to say no, but after all the Daiichi plant's been through, it's still no "Chernobyl."

    I was in the US Navy as a mechanical engineer in a nuclear power plant. The Navy is currently operating probably close to 100 reactors installed in warships, all of which are being operated by people that are mostly between the ages of 19-30. In over 50 years, there have been ZERO nuclear accidents. So, all you anti-nuclear activists, dazzle me. Convince me nuclear power is, in the big scheme of things, "bad." I dare you.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  133. Manuel Teixeira

    Nuclear Power can be useful IF there is a watchdog in place that's reputible! I worked for a utility where the Nuclear plans incurred many fines for not conforming with rules set forth by the NRC. But, in fact the NRC itself was not doing their job either in overseeing the plants. IF a reliable watchdog is present THEN nuclear power plants can be deemed safe!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  134. Brian88

    If we can't operate nuclear plants over the course of just a few decades without accidents. How can we store nuclear waste for millions of years?

    The US could shut down many of its power plants (nuclear or otherwise) by pursing efficiency. Ironically, Japan would be a great model to follow. They have maintained one of the world's highest standard of living for decades by pursing a policy of energy efficiency.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  135. Raymond Hinds

    Yes However looking at what happened to Japan it seems to me that their back up power sources (emegency power) should have been built totally enclosed form the elements.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  136. Debbie Baker

    I lived through the Three Mile Island accident and talked to many reporters from Japan after our accident. My comment to them when asked this question is still the same today.

    In Japan you have millions of people living close to your nuclear power plants. Can you move those people fast enough if Three Mile Island happend in your backyard? The answer was always no. My next question was, is it worth it? Their answer was no.

    I can relate and my heart goes out to these people. Many will leave if asked to evacuate, but many will stay because it is their dreams that will be crushed if asked to leave. Is it worth it? Nobody should have to be made to make this decision.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  137. Daniel

    What happened to using water as a source of energy? Japan is a perfect example of how powerful water is, why not use it's power for energy instead of harmful nuclear plants?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  138. Justin Phillips

    I think that nuclear power is an unnecessary source of power that could put the world in danger. We should stick to renewable sources.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  139. Martin, Warner Robins, GA

    From all information that has been provided by experts on this issue, I believe we have a chance of building nuclear plants that will avert some of the shortfalls we are seeing in the Japan Plants. It looks like, just like any other catastrophes, political activists are wanting to use this issue to score cheap political points. We need a sustainable source of electricity that is low in emissions, Nuclear is one of the best. Let 's use it with responsibility.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  140. Larry

    Total and absolute safety in regard to any industry are unreal expectations. Overall, nuclear energy has proven to be safe but when there is a disaster, it's catastrophic. Deciding if the value is worth the risks is very subjective – our society will never unanimously decide what is best. We must evaluate lessons learned (from other incidents) and trust our experts to keep us safe.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  141. Justin S

    I think the U.S. should look for other ways for energy. While nuclear energy can produce tons of power what bothers me is there is no way to eleminate that waste. The only solution to eleminate the waste right now is "long term storage" which means a thousand years or longer. Until they can create a way to truly dispose of the stuff then we should go another route.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  142. sally obrien

    this really boils down to education and everyone having a voice as a public we need to be educating ourselves what are the benefits and at what cost (real and potential) do we value life and our planet and are we willing to sacrifice it what do we as a country value and is it important enough for all of us to have an educated voice

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  143. colleen

    ali,have you looked at the Bloom cube technology Featured on one of the news shows this week ,no radiation involved!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  144. Matt in Vermont

    Absolutely! Nuclear power is an important source of energy to power our future. My only issue is corporations who constantly cut corners in the interest of profit. our reactor here in Vermont is leaking tritium into our ground water, and in the past the have lost fuel rods! LOST!

    The tragic thing about Japan is that the tsunami destroyed all three layers of backup redundancy at the same time, this was unforeseen by the designers and i could forgive them for that just due to the sheer cataclysmic nature of this event. I just hope that the brave men and women in the plant fighting till the end are successful to some degree to minimize the lasting impact on the Japanese people and the world at large.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  145. Anne

    why cant we go solar?! its free, safe and we cant deplete it. just a thought.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  146. Curtis Wilbur

    Nothing should be off the table. But we need safer technology and better engineering. Thorium reactors have already been extensively studied and are probably an order of magnitude safer than their Uranium counterparts. Just remember, don't build anything that you can't maintain.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  147. Charlene

    The carbon footprint of nuclear power is enormous. Mining and processing uranium, the construction of a massive infrastructure, waste disposal and monitoring systems wreck havoc on the environment.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  148. Christopher Parham

    I tried to present a solution to a world wide problem. "Fly in gas powered pumps with a direct draw from the sea." I was told on air not to send messages. I can't call the U.S President with this solution. I guess this isn't the channel either. Oh well... come what may.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  149. curtis hawkins

    we have enough nuclear plants, in fact i'd say we have way too many... we are watching the true dangers that are caused by nature like the earthquake but the fact is that these places are never as safe as the corporations that build them admit. i find it disturbing that cnn spent time following a nuclear industry lobbyist around the capitol without showing in equal time the citizens groups fighting nuclear power. remember our congress is being wined and dined by these power companies because there is so much money to be made. i would hope that cnn would take the opportunity that this tragedy gives us to refocus our power efforts toward wind, solar, thermal and wave power alternatives. it is also time for cnn to expose which of our lawmakers have received contributions from the nuclear lobbying organizations (and how much they received). thank you

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  150. Joe Alverio

    Fail Safe, is what this reactor design lacks – it appears. As an aerospace system engineer, the fact that a single event, like a Tsunami, can disable all the reactor's cooling system, it appears it wasn't properly designed. Especially considering that Tsunamis are common in Japan. I would of like to see their Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA).

    Yes, on nuclear power, the only option we have with a diminishing energy supplies, growing population and increasing green house gases. Modern reactors design, I understand, are fail safe.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  151. Dre

    No! we need to use new engry like the bloom box, and green tec but the big companys don't want that to happen due to money all about greed and that will hurt allot of poeple.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  152. Sue Trandem

    Hi Ali,
    Why aren't we harnessing the water power from our great rivers in the USA?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  153. james vaught

    nucular power is to unsafe nucular waste unsafe go solar wind andalge and evengarbage there are other altenatives and the us cantake lessons from the japanese behavior look at how the folks acted in catrina

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  154. John Oliver

    A big NO. Nuclear power seems a cheap alternative, only if you don't factor in the cost of storing the waste products, for 10,000, 50,000, even 100,000 years!
    This is the same type of conundrum as funding the government with borrowed trillions.
    The cost will be paid for by future generations. In the case of nuclear waste, the true costs will be paid by hundreds of generations!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  155. Ed Johnson

    No way to nuke as fuel.Stick with wind and solar.As seen in Japan.........One oops wipes out all those atta boys....for100 yrs.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  156. DPrats

    We can use nuclear power and do it safely. Why isn't anyone in the media talking about the meltdown proof HTR reactor currently in use in china. The technology we are using today is dangerous and most people don't even know there is another option! Ali please tell your viewers about pebble bed reactors!!!!!!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  157. Jack

    We have 100years of coal.Will put a lot of US workers to work.Also I do not believe we get all the facts from the exes of the big companies.Stick with what we know.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  158. Justin Cooper

    Your question is really interesting as we are talking about this just happens to be our chapter of study in our English 321 class at Ferris State University, MI.

    I think that people should not be deterred from Nuclear Power as a source of energy. Nuclear Power is dependable, clean, and has less carbon output during the total life-cycle of a facility than wind and solar. Nuclear power facilities of current designs are able to be almost automated; if no one was at the facility, they would shutdown by themselves. With concerns to waste, the current amount of Nuclear Waste, from all the reactors in the US, would fill that of a football field a yard deep. The Yucca Mountain would be able to handle that capacity and much more for future years. Current storage is located at the plants themselves, securely. I would encourage people to research this more, as when I started, I didn't know the 'whole' facts.
    Nuclear is a "yes" and a necessity.

    (Sources provided upon request)

    March 16, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  159. Susan Dianne Rice

    No. Nuclear power is not feasible technically, environmentally or economically. If it were reliable and safe, Wall Street would rush to finance plants. But despite decades of massive taxpayer subsidies, the industry has been unable to fund a single plant this century. Obama now seeks $38 billion in loan guarantees–shifting the financial risk to taxpayers–another example of privatizing profits while socializing the risks. This is morally, as well as economically, wrong.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  160. David Sprague

    I always have a problem with a yes/no, either/or question. The issue today is to compare the pros and cons of all forms of energy production. This comparison must take into account the entire process from extraction of the resources needed to the disposition of the waste products all the way to the end. For nuclear energy this takes us from the mining of uranium and the wastes from this process to how the spent fuel is disposed of at the end. Obviously, truthful analysis of safety issue is relevant to most forms of energy production.

    All along the time line of the process factors like the impact on the environment and human communities, impact on workers, pollution, and resource depletion to name a few must be considered. All forms of energy production are going to have certain down sides. Only when this kind of comparative analysis is done can a reasonable energy policy be established.

    Finally, the mind set of the modern world that believes there is a technological solution to everything is to me a myth. As we have just seen, the forces of the natural world are always going to demonstrate the fallacy of thinking that humans can ultimately overcome nature with technological solutions.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  161. Debra

    Using nuclear power is safe if built in areas far from the "ring of fire" fissures.Before more plants are built, they should find a way the burn the waste for fuel. Also, the existinf plants that are on faults should have a back cooling system when the primary system fails

    March 16, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  162. Dave B

    Other sources of energy have cost us just as much in human life and environmental impact. Deepwater Horizon was much worse than Three Mile Island. And when miners get trapped and killed in coal mines, no one suggest we stop using coal. I think nuclear power gets a bad rap due to the connection the public makes with nuclear weapons.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  163. Gary Mount

    I personally think that there should be a moratorium in Building anymore Nuclear Plants until a complete study is done on them by a independent group that is not biased. There has to be a better source of energy, there has not been any significant new developments of energy, surely there has to be a better way than Nuclear Power to boil water to make steam. With all the scientist we have someone should be able to come up with a idea that wont put people lives in danger. Here in Texas we have the largest wind generator power grid in the world. That needs to be extended around the world and especially here in the Us, the wind will always blow, put these wind geenerators everywhere possible and we can use the Natural Gas instead of Nucler Power, which we have plenty of and clean coal. All these European Countrys and China and Russia have plenty of room to put up vast amounts of wind generators., they have the manpower to do it , anything is better than Nuke Energy to boil water. Anything built by man will fail, we are seeing that now.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  164. Howard Lerner

    Yes, it should. How much injury and death have resulted from flight, electricity, the industrial revolution, and, indeed, human-generated fire. Head back to the caves of neolithic times? Rather, continually strengthening technical control and human management of nuclear-generated energy will offer the time we need to successfully put in place other realistic energy saving and generating systems.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  165. Michael Vocilka

    Most certainly yes. Nuclear Power is still the most reliable and clean source of energy and no expense should be spared in their design, QA/QC and existing plant, new technology upgrades

    March 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  166. Kay Hawklee

    The nuclear industry claims it is safe, clean, and renewables won't be enough. Not so. Nuclear contaminates soil, air, and water from cradle to grave. Industry claims nuclear provides 20% of consumption. Not so. It's down to 9% in U.S. Renewables have risen to 17% and are truly "clean" (See EIA recent report). Nuclear is government subsidized to the tune of $18 Billion for a double reactor. Let private investors provide the cost and take the risk, not the American people.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  167. Ryan Davey

    i don't see why we can't use nuclear power. It's a great sourse of power but when building these plants cornners can't be cut, safety has to be put above profit, and safety inspection need to happen regularly along with upgrades in safety systems.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  168. Majorworks

    Absolutely NO, with the current incident in Japan it is clear nobody can secure a safe environment for our communities, workers and the environment for the sake of energy. Wake up America before your city will be evacuated next! We must find a safer way to produce energy.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  169. kirk

    Yes If we replace uranium with thorium. It would be cheaper and safer. It does'nt melt down and has no nuclear waste.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  170. KatWoman28

    Absolutely NO!!! to nuclear power as a source of energy. Look at what is currently happening in Japan. There is constant danger of a massive meltdown and many lives are at stake. Now, if you look at solar energy with rechargable battery cells/generators or wind mills with the same engineering you got a sustainable source of energy that is 1- good for the environment and 2- promotes human, animal and overall "green health" and 3- is safe for the community and 4- is the way to go in this day and age.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  171. Bob Klemow

    Fine as long as the next nuclear plant that goes online is on the grounds of the Capital Building in Washington.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  172. Nancy Allen

    Nuclear power is not SAFE.
    Insurance industry knows this and will not insure nuclear plants.
    The US government exempts them having to with the Price-Anderson Nuclear Industries Indemnity Act.
    What a deal for nuclear corporations.
    Not so great for the planet.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  173. zona jones

    No, no, a thousand times no!

    There is a popular presumption going around which says, "No energy is free, and these terrible destructive events are just the price we have to pay to get the energy we want."

    Let's challenge that notion and use SAFE methods of energy that do not cost horrific losses of human life and health and our children's lives. Wind energy, water energy and solar energy all over us. We find only to tap into them and keep them clean and freee of ANY toxins. Put our brilliant minds to work for a safe future, not a deadly one.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  174. Dave

    Some numbers:

    As a country, our peak power demand during the day is 1 TerraWatt of power (1,000 GigaWatts)

    It takes 12 square miles of desert to produce 1 GigaWatt of solar-generated electricity 24/7

    To produce ALL of our electricity from clean resources in our "Thermal Furnace" in the desert South West would require 12,000 square miles.

    We have 250,000 square mile of such desert, enough to power 20 countries our size.

    80% of this land is already owned by the Federal Government so there are no 'emminant domain' issues to acquire

    It would cost $25B to produce a 10GW 'Energy Field" in the desert, including transmission costs, enough to power 10% of our 200M vehicles if they were powered by electricity

    The average electric car gets 5 miles per kilowatt-hour that on average costs 10 cents per killowat, resulting in a cost to operate of 2 cents/mile

    At $4/Gallon of gas and an average of 20 miles/gallon, the average electric vehicle would save the owner 18 cents per mile. The average car travels 13,000 miles per year which results in a savings of $2300/year. 10% of our cars (20M) would save $46B (Billion!) per year, enough to fund the infrastructure needed to power them.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  175. Carol Childers

    Nuclear Power is one of the best answers to energy. My concern is
    that each plant have a backup plan that works and is effective. I cannot
    believe how irresponsible the Japanese Gov. is and how they are
    dealing with the potential of this dangerous occurrence. They are
    playing with the lives of the people of Japan. Where are the people
    who are suppose to regulate these plants? Why isn't the US getting
    involved to control an out of control situation. I can't believe there are
    so many ignorant people who put themselves in charge of life and
    death issues.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  176. JDD

    Nuclear energy provides about 20% of our energy. Its safety record over the past 30 years is unmatched by any other technology – remember nobody died at TMI – in fact it's safer to work at a nuclear power plant than in a bank! That's because safety is the top priority at a nuclear power plant. Compare that to any other industry and they can't compare. over 200 have died due to wind turbine accidents compared to 0 from nuclear over the past 40 years in the US. We should be thankful we have nuclear power plants, and we need more! They are extremely safe, provide reliable, cheap electricity, and don't emit greenhouse gases! The situation in Japan is serious, but the workers and systems have prevented a large release to date, and hopefully that remains true!
    I wish people would keep things in perspective, the plant survived a 9.0 earthquake, being slammed by a tsunami and several hydrogen explosions while preventing most of the radiation from harming the public. Name another technology that could do this!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  177. Brian C

    No way! We should immediately realize how dangerous nuclear power is and start finding ways to scale down our dependency on it. We should push more then ever to fund large scale alternative energy projects... Giant solar panel and wind farms. There are plenty of space in the US for such projects. Its so upsetting how large industries like the nuclear industry use their money and power to buy influence and control our government.. It is insanity to put so many peoples lives at risk have they learned nothing from the past. Is profit worth putting the planet at risk??
    How can countries pat themselves on the back about ridding the world of nuclear weapons while at the same time building thousands of nuclear power plants all over the world in major populated cities?? Many of which are close to earthquake fault lines. Chernoble happend without an earthquake. People are also leaving out the fact that they could be targets for terrorism.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  178. Heidi

    The problem with nuclear energy is that we do not yet have the understanding or technology to deal with the waste. Burying nuclear waste is not a solution. It is merely poisoning the earth at some inevitable point in the future.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  179. Doc

    Solar is abundant and can be used by individual consumers in rural areas along with wind, geothermal, and tidal force can be used where applicable. Energy companies will not allow this.

    With reguard to Nuclear Power, does anyone remember the universally accepted scientific law called Murphy's Law. It states "What can go wrong Will go wrong". In light of this, what rational person would be in favor of Nuclear Power plants?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  180. MadPixelPusher

    Here in Florida, the sunshine state, I'd rather see a push for solar panels on every roof. This would at least deter the need for another nuclear plant in the near future.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  181. Bob Thompson

    There is enough wind power in the US,Ali. It isn't where it's most needed, but there are ways to transmit energy. It's along the front range primarily, and it's needed in the midwest and east. There are windfarms in the thumb of Mi. and along US 20 in NY. There is great wind energy in the UP of MI and you would not believe the amount of turbines in southern ON. There is a new type that is quieter, less dangerous to animals, and considerably more efficient, productive at lower wind speeds, yet I see few of them and not much news of them. I actually hauled some of them a couple years ago. It can be done, if we could only break the stranglehold on decisions that Big Oil has. Bob T

    March 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  182. Tom

    Without a second thought! I can see TMI every day in my travels around my home in Harrisburg, PA. Experts will learn from this mistake and changes will be made to make nuclear power safe and efficient.

    I feel better placing faith in our scientist than in the Oil produing states!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  183. John Oliver

    A big NO! The use of nuclear power as a cheap source of power fails to factor in the cost of storing nuclear waste for 10,000, 50,000, even 100,000 years.
    This is the same conundrum as funding the government with borrowed trillions of dollars.
    The true costs will be paid for by future generations.
    In the case of nuclear waste, the costs will continue to be paid by hundreds, even thousands of generations!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  184. Bob Doss

    As a stop-gap, nuclear is a necessary evil. The question should really be "How will we replace nuclear power?".

    One answer is to use solar electrolysis to produce hydrogen from water (because hydrogen can be stored for sunless days). Then burn the hydrogen in power plants, motor vehicles, and furnaces.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  185. ray earls

    NO. Although there is no other single source that can generate such a large KW output of energy, worldwide and more specifically here in the USA, we need to do more to reduce the need for such large quantities of energy. That is the real dilemma. It comes down to risk/benefit analysis. The potential for catastrophic outcomes far outweighs the low cost and high output that nuclear power provides. If there were better designs, more monitoring and an absolute way to destroy (not store) the waste products of these plants then the cost would also be higher and there would be no advantage. We have allowed public safety to be compromised for the oldest reason in the world, corporate profits.
    Also the renewal of the 20 year permits to operate plants that are located on fault lines here in the US should never be allowed.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  186. Bryan

    Considering the fuel cycle of nuclear power uranium mining, refining, burning, to eventual long term storage or disposal of wastes even low level wastes, it is clear to me that Nuclear power is not the safe, clean, cheap, alternantive that we are lead to believe that it is.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  187. norma cruz

    absolutly not!!! the cost and proven possibility of a catastrophe in US soil is simply not worth it, just consider the 100+ plants to cover just 1/5 of energy supply against the odds of disasters. We have enough new technology to not need to risk our nation, lets lobby for the future of energy and stop wasting tax money in something so dangerous and infective.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  188. Victor Tall Tree

    Nuclear Power in the U.S. NO! Something to think about is that the U.S. is riddled with fault lines virtually making this country unsafe for that type of energy source for Earth Quakes would always be a threat just look at what happen in Japan by a Quake to Nuclear Plants, with Nuclear plants there is no guarantees for safety.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  189. Susan Dianne Rice

    No. Nuclear power is not feasible technically, environmentally or economically. If it were reliable and safe, Wall Street would rush to finance plants. But despite decades of massive taxpayer subsidies, the industry has been unable to fund a single plant this century. Obama now seeks $38 billion in loan guarantees–shifting the financial risk to taxpayers–another example of privatizing profits while socializing the risks. This is morally, as well as economically, wrong.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  190. Al, Boston, MA

    Nuclear power is dangerous and archaic, as we have seen. Why are we not discussing hydrogen technology for power plants? I was assigned to look into this a couple years ago and power plants using hydrogen technology could be built quickly and are safe. The bi-product of hydrogen use also creates pure water.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  191. Russ Kercher

    As a society, we must exist with risks and rewards in all things. Unfortunately, we have been deluded into thinking that we must disavow all things that involve any degree of risk, regardless of the consequences. Nuclear power has demonstrated over the past several decades that electricity can be generated and distributed quickly, easily, safely, and efficiently. If we grounded airplanes or decided to build no more airplanes everytime a plane crashes, we would be ignorant of the progress the human race has attained. Nonetheless, I dare say there are those who would advocate just such a thing.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  192. Jerry

    I would say no to nuclear power. I wrote a 100 page paper on this subject in college. The problem is how do you store the rods once they are used up. and how do you shut down the plant during bad times. We should learn from other's mistakes. Jerry

    March 16, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  193. Dennis from Southern Calif

    First, it is far too early to form conclusions based on Japan – a waste of people's time. However, here is my comment.

    Nuclear power should be put into the context of risks/consequences versus benefits of other options. How many died from the 3 Mile Island powerplant accident (answer = 0)? How many have died as result of coal fired powerplants emissions over the 30+ years since 3 Mile Island (answer per EPA = over 10,000 per year)? If we had made these comparisons and expanded nuclear power from the 20% of USA electricity it has been and reduced coal fired power (or made it cleaner), just think how many lives would have been saved.

    There are risks and benefits for all options. We in the US just don't seem to be able to make rational decisions based on the big picture.



    March 16, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  194. Howard Smith

    Good morning, Ali –

    Regarding new nuclear plants – Not a good idea because
    1 – The U.S. does not have a permanent, safe place for the used fuel rods it currently has, let alone any additional rods.
    2 – In the same time it takes to put a new plant on line, we can produce ten times as much energy from green sources and at the same cost. It is not effective, in any sense of the word, to go nuclear.

    Howard Smith

    March 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  195. Jerry lamping

    Nuclear power should be used as a source of energy! Please stop all the "may be happenings" and "might be possible" statements that are just meant to stir up fear about nuclear power. If you don't trust the Japanese government about the public safety statements go get a Geiger counter and take the radiation readings yourself. Get some interviews with real nuclear plant designers and operators. Stop all the speculation with "breaking news reports" that do not report the actual news but describe only the "ifs and could be happenings" .
    Three Mile Island nuclear plant experienced an actual core meltdown but no one was harmed. How many people fly in airplanes everyday and receive higher doses of radiation with no fear for their health. Stop the scare tactics and report the facts about how nuclear power plants have been operating for long time periods with out any failures

    March 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  196. Artie

    Absolutely not. The industry supporters have been making the same false arguments about safety since the 1960's- if this isn't 3 strikes and you're out for nuclear power, then we are completely insane. This is the perfect example of how corporations put profits before people (and our health, the future of our children, etc.). Nuclear power is inherently too dangerous to risk even one mistake, is the most expensive when all the costs including decommissioning plants, dealing with waste forever, the costs of paying for accidents (yes, accidents do happen). How much will this accident in Japan cost the Japanese and world economies- that is a cost of nuclear power. Chernobyl brought down the Soviet Union. Our insurance will not insure our homes against a nuclear accident- they are the most careful, conservation, profit -minded you can find, and they don't trust nuclear power. At any point in time, including the current moment, if the trillions (yes trillions) of dollars that nuclear power really costs were put into safe renewable technologies, the power issue across the world, including oil money going to people that hate, would be resolved.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
  197. Amanda Hill-Attkisson

    Atlanta, Georgia

    This should finally and profoundly halt the debate of whether nuclear power is a clean, safe source of energy.

    We should not continue with this cold war mentality of using nuclear power – this is a 50 year old experiment to the tune hundreds of billions of dollars has failed. No solution to the tons of nuclear waste (aka nuclear rods in cooling pools) left behind and a horribly inefficient source on energy. Renewable energy sources such as wind and solar are now matching and exceeding the nuclear power output. Imagine – we put our money and our American ingenuity full scale towards renewable sources of energy – smart grids, decentralized power stations, more efficient technologies (lines, distribution etc) which equates to green jobs – its time for the green revolution now.

    My heart goes to the people of Japan. God Bless.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
  198. Tom Carpenter

    Human nature and human error will defeat good policies and "fail-proof" designs, Nuclear is too risky, makes waste that we cannot disposition, and presents too tempting a terrorist target to rely upon as a future energy option. Stop the renaissance.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  199. Pat B

    No more nuclear power! Wind power is the way to go. Nuclear power can go so wrong. There can't be a 100% guaranty, that there won't be a problem in the future. The problems that go along with a disaster with nuclear, can't be corrected in a short period of time it goes on for many many years.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  200. John Throckmorton

    Congress does need to allow NRC to raise its standards for our nuclear plants – Sorry Alabama senator Shelby. The original design for the current crop came from the 1950's. Better designs evolved in the 60's and 70's but this is 2011. The new designs are far better. Stop extending the life of these old plants and build new design plants. You can only patch a less than perfect design by so much. A simple fix to the station blackout problem which resulted in Fukishima is a portable battery charging diesel generator like River Bend station has and a portable diesel fire/flooding pump like Cooper Nucler station has. All plants should be required to get these. They eliminate the absolute reliance on the current Emergency Diesels in such a beyond design accident. The low cost justifies going beyond the design basis requirements.

    As a former licensed operator of these plants I know well that NRC does a good job of making these things as safe as possible. They have in fact forced some bad companies out of the nuclear business due to their repeated failures to have a solid safety culture. It cost those conpanies hundreds of millions of dollars and keeps the industry's attention. Nuclear energy can be used safely when NRC is able to monitor and make sure. In any endeavor (oil drilling, oil shipping, nuclear energy production, coal mining, etc.) safety costs money and must be enforced.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
  201. JD

    YES! Why are people so irrationally afraid of radiation when they willingly accept the proven and more hazardous consequences of releasing copious amounts of heavy metals like mercury from burning coal plants? The nuclear industry maintains safety as its first priority, and the radiation released so far poses almost no harm to the public – what about the oil refinery fire after the earthquake, or the natural gas pipeline explosions that have rocked the US several times in the last year?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
  202. Susan Corbett

    Nuclear is OBVIOUSLY not safe,,, we have had numerous close calls here in the U.S, that the media never cover or hear about. Our aging fleet of reactors is brittle, leaking and working beyond their capacity and designed life span. We are playing Russian roulette. New nuclear will be very very expensive, even more than wind or solar, and the GOP is trying to fast track new reactors. allowing even less time for serious study of designs or safety features. We still have no where to put the waste with the geologic unsuitability of Yucca mountain, and NO state wants to be the nuclear waste dump of the country. The industry is fraught with problems not the least is its dependency on Federal and taxpayer loan guarantees and subsidies, since Wall street considers it too high risk for serious private investment. Time to move on to take advantage of massive offshore and landbased wind, and Southern and Western solar potential. Coupled with aggressive energy efficiency, this would negate the need for new nuclear.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  203. Capt. Artchie Kelley, USN(Ret)

    If we are to do anything about global climate change before it is too late, nuclear power is absolutely necessary. While the accidents have been scary to a public that seems to ignore the order of magnitute
    greater impact of coal fired power plants in terms of lung cancer, nuclear power has numerically had an increasingly good safety record. Since the Nautilus went to sea in 1955 the US Navy has had over 7000 reactor years of experience with several hundred naval combat vessels. Two submarines have been lost but thorough analysis of these accidents showed that the cause was not lnuclear.
    As for the amount of radioactive waste, consider that our latest nuclear submarines NEVER refuel so the hull must be able to store
    the original nuclear fuel and all the waste products. Coal plants build
    mountains of coal ash and require typically 100 coal cars a day to fuel them. The reason you see Chinese in the major cities wearing breath-ing masks on the streets is because of the long term use of coal as a fuel. Solar and wind can't possibly provide more than a few percent of our energy requirements.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  204. Nuclear Power as a Source of Energy

    There are multiple energies sources out there that are more efficient and safer. The research as all ready bean done. Look at the Orion project.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  205. harry ruloff

    NO...with our coal and natural gas reserves, there is no reason to take the risk with nuclear power...the risk are real and the earth should not be subjected to the dangers of nuclear power

    March 16, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
  206. Susan

    No, three major accidents in my life time is to many. The consequences are too great and its too risky. The events in Japan reveal that people can't control or foresee all risks.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
  207. Tim

    Ali; Wind power will work if it was mass produced for individual family homes. Mass production will reduce the price. Companies could be created and this would supply jobs. Energy companies could be mandated to install these. These units can be made and located to ease concerns of "seeing" them. I'm sure the "common" person would be in favor of this. The problem; "Politics" and "big" interests don't want something that will cut into their "profits". Energy companies aren't going to support something that "cuts" into their profits and "lobbyists" are'nt going to push for this as they are all connected to people who are only concerned about doing what's best for their profits. Big money only wants more.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:38 pm |
  208. Chris van der Veen

    Nuclear fusion produces radioactive byproducts, some of which have very long half lives. Consider that after, say, 10 half-lives the amount of radioactive material is basically zero. That means that some of the byproducts will remain dangerous longer than we have been Homo Sapians. Go backwards in time past Neanderthal Man to Homo Erectus. Then consider our Nation: as great as we are, The United States Of America is not even 250 YEARS old – but we believe that we can keep an environmental toxin out of the biosphere for thousands ... no millions ... of years! Humans are terribly arrogant, and Mother Nature (as History has shown) will always find some situation we did not consider. Human beings should use less energy as we find clean and safe sources of energy.. Nuclear Power is neither safe nor clean.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  209. Susan

    No. There are too many variables out of our control when dealing with nuclear energy. So glad that Oregon closed the Trojan Nuclear Power plant years ago. With the current crisis in Japan, there are issues in the storage of nuclear waste. In addition to solar and wind power, we should explore "wave energy" off of our coasts. With so many of our states having a border along a coastline, this energy option is ongoing, day or night.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  210. Carlos Flanagan

    I have no fears of a meltdown on us soil! My issue is the Spent Fuel Rods! We are just creating a serious problem! It is simply stupid to call Radioactive Nuclear waste a clean form of energy! Plus just because you store the waste on site dose not mean it is safe! We will still need to deal with it sooner or later. Just putting your head in the sand or closing you eyes will not wish the problem away! Not Safe, Not Clean, Not good!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  211. vince rossi

    Nuclear is the only viable source of energy that we have right now, since fusion is probably 40 or 50 years away from when we can really benefit from it. The issue is that we need to spend a lot more money on constructing the nuclear plants much more robust to withstand natural disasters such as in Japan. Perhaps some of the money used on wars to protect American oil interests could be used towards more robust nuclear plants. Just a thought.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
  212. Speedfreak

    Nuclear energy should have been the primary source of energy for this country by nw. Enironmentalists have set us back 30 years and would have us all living in caves and rubbing sticks together to create fire if they could. Energy has clearly become a national security issue, anyone not recognizing that has really not been paying attention.

    We need to build many more nuclear plants, markedly increase domestic oil production, and advance the further use of coal (our greatest resource) until we are able to harness additional more efficient energy sources.

    Evolution takes time. Those advocating widespread use of windmills and solar energy to solve our current energy problems need to face the facts and the times that we live in. The idea that those energy sources would greatly assist us in attaining the goal of energy independence is just a pipe dream.

    Windmills have killed far more people and animals than nuclear power.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
  213. Eileen McCabe

    However elegant the science may be, however tempting this "quick" fix to our energy supply challenges by generating large amounts of energy, this technology is beyond the ability of flawed human beings to control. Further, natural disasters are unpredictable in scope and effect and further destabilize humans from predictable, flawless execution of tasks that have minute tolerances for error. We cannot afford the risks of this technology

    March 16, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
  214. D2

    Nuclear power is important to us right now. The safety technology is advanced, nuclear power is very safe, refineries and chemical plants, even mining coal, are far more risky. "Nuclear Meltdown" is a media scare tactic, obviously it works. People are dying in the middle east. People in Japan have died, not from anything nuclear, those are the people Im praying for.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
  215. Mike

    Current nuclear plants were built with no standardization of design and are nearing the end of their service life. The plan for future units is to have one or two standard designs for mini reactors that are totally sealed, maintainence free and buried underground.Will someone please mention this along with the leading questions and fear mongering? By the way, I am an independent voter and in favor of a green enviroment.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
  216. Alfred Meyer

    Nuclear power reactors are the most dangerous, dirty and frightfully expensive ways to boil water. Every step of the nuclear fuel chain (mining, milling, refining, enriching and fabricating fuel rods) emits carbon and poisons humans and the environment. Plus, nuclear reactors make the materials needed for atomic bombs, and leave behind deadly radioactive waste that is dangerous for hundreds of thousands of years. No country on earth has figured out what to do with these materials which alter our genetic materials and cause cancer and other health problems. If this 52 year old industry is as good as it claims to be, why must us taxpayers bear the high risk of building new reactors (federal nuclear loan guarantees) and cover the industry's liability insurance (Price-Anderson Act) so that private corporations can make a profit?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
  217. Ralph

    Yes, we should continue to use nuclear energy. I don't see that we have any choice/alternative. Solar and wind are too inconsistant to be used as a reliable source. To make solar and wind reliable and consistent one would have to set up a system where batteries are charged, and then inverters used to feed the grid. The size/cost would depend on the location. This technology has been available for decades, so since it isn't being used I assume that it would be much more costly then nuclear.

    Natural gas plants are a cost effective alternative at today's low gas prices, but they produce co2 – greenhouse problem.

    I don't think the radiation is a doomsday problem, as the movies and media would have us believe. Hiroshima was bombed, yet today it is a modern vibrant city. Radiation from a nuclear palnt is miniscule compared to that from a bomb. Because a nuclear power plant uses uranium which is much much much less concentrated then that used in a bomb, it could never become a bomb.

    Nuclear technology has evolved from the one used inFuki.... Japan,
    and it will continue to evolve becomimg safer and safer. We can also learn, treat it with respect and use it wisely. Discontinuing the use of nuclear will undoudbtly result in a poorer, malnurished, polluted world.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  218. leroymoore

    Nuclear power should not be used as a source of power for several reasons:
    It is too dangerous.
    It is too costly (estimates of $8 to $12 billion construction cost per reactor).
    There is no solution to the nuclear waste problem.
    It is vulnerable to terrorist attack.
    It produces material that can be used in bombs.
    Several countries (India, Pakistan, N. Korea) show that nuclear power is the route to proliferation of nuclear weapons.
    It undermines democracy by requiring centralized control and fostering secrecy and deceit

    March 16, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  219. dena

    too risky, too expensive, takes too long to build – wind and solar are ready now – we are building 3 nuclear power plants worth of 100% clean and risk free wind energy every year –

    March 16, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  220. Anonymous

    Research fusion, not fission. Fusion powers the sun, can be contained using magnetic fields, provides tremendous long-lasting power, uses either miniscule amounts of weak radioactive material or NONE at all (depending on the method of reaction), and if the sensitive conditions inside the reactor are ever disturbed, the reaction stops being sustained, and its heat stops immediately.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  221. Laurie Schleicher

    Nuclear power is going to be the energy source of the future, like it or not. The NRC (our tax dollars at work!) takes its respnsibilities very seriously, as do the nuclear power plant operators and employees. I think the U.S. has the brain power, ingeniuity, and most importantly, attitude, to employ this source of energy safely and effectively. Transparency is the key to making this work.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  222. William, Vancouver Wa.

    Unfortunately nuclear power is here to stay. The population of the world is increasing faster than our ability to provide energy for it. We have already exceeded the carrying capacity of the planet. So everything we do is artificial in nature. Renewable energy sources will help but if we manage to provide 20% of our needs with solar , wind and geothermal energy by the year 2050 the population of the world will have increased by 30%. Our oil supplies are being utilized at an increasing rate but our supplies are decreasing. We have no choice but to use what energy sources we can find including nuclear. The reactors we are designing now are better than the ones in use in Japan. Some experts have said that those reactors were poorly designed 50 years ago and we will never make those mistakes again. But you can rest assured when we are looking at this same problem 50 years from now a different set of experts will say they can't believe how poorly designed the reactors that came on line 2012 were, and we will never make those mistakes again! Yes we will use nuclear energy in the future we have no choice

    March 16, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  223. Paula Gotsch

    Absolutely not. Nuclear Power fails in every catagory: safety, economics and as a ready way to avoid climate change.
    This is the third catstrophic acident in an industry that makes exhorbitant claims safety through "low risk" assessments,
    Wall Strret says the worst investment risk! Plus all the so called "externailties: mining, waste disposal, liabilty insurance etc, are all shoved of on taxpayers and rate payers. (What happened to letting the free martket economy let the failures drop out?)
    We need a major shift and full stean ahead with Eng eff., renewables and a smart grid. We have seen what happens when macro enrgy systems fail in a tragic horrific way. We need local distributive energy systems.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  224. Ken Hays

    I feel that most people think nuclear power is a viable and relatively non polluting source of energy. However, using it safely must be our primary concern and that means providing much more funding, research and oversight than is currently evident in this and other countries.
    The U.S. currently has 20% of our electricity produced by fission plants. Some of these reactors are not only as dated as the failing Japanese design, but are also dangerously sited in locations that are very susceptible to some of the same destructive Earth changes: Quakes, Tsunami, Vuncanism...etc.. The cost to retrofit those plants or build new more robust ones is just too great to be very economically viable. In addition, there is quite simply NO truly safe place to dispose of or store such highly radioactive wastes as those generated by fission. The half-life of some is tens of thousands of years. What kind of language can you put on a warning sign that is guaranteed to still be understandable that many years from now? Even currently used graphic signs may be misinterpreted by future generatrions.
    I feel we should, instead, invest just as heavily, the sooner the better, in alternate sources of energy. The technology currently exists to start changing over to safer, cleaner ways of producing energy. We should take advantage of the current public awareness of the tragedy in Japan to rethink our energy solutions.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  225. eric ostrander

    Nuclear power could still be an option for clean energy, both here and abroad, but it should be fairly obvious that the tenets of modern capitalism does not lend itself to building "safe" nuclear reactors. Contracts are given to the lowest bidder, whom in turn builds that facility with profitability being the primary concern. If you ask for a cheap nuclear power station, you will get one. Rather than invest in safer designs like gravel-bed reactors, or investing in Thorium reactors (which can be very expensive, but are both cleaner and safer), we rely on market principles which, in comparison with cost-effectiveness and profitability, promotes minimum standards in safety, responsibility, and sustainability. Thorium reactors are expensive, and would require significant investments in developing a Thorium-based infrastructure, but it would be FAR safer and FAR cleaner than ANY modern, commercial nuclear power plant. Whereas current reactors must constantly regulate fission, Thorium reactors must constantly maintain fission using a particle accelerator. Unlike modern commercial nuclear power, you can actually turn off a Thorium reactor. Modern reactors can only be subdued and contained as we can all painfully see in Japan. Another benefit from a Thorium reactor is waste material with a 500 yr lifespan, vs. a 10,000 yr lifespan. Seems like the right choice to me, but i guess the price is what's important, isn't it, Velshi?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  226. John Hall

    Nuclear power plants not worth the risk. And who is liabile
    for damages from nuclear plants? Check out FEMA's 50 mile
    radius evacuation plan. Who is aware of this? NYC is 23 miles
    from a Nuclear plant. 20% of US is now nuclear. Canada is up
    to 15% wind, solar and hydro. They know the right way to go.
    Thanks, John

    March 16, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
  227. bud

    We do not need more nukes. Despite the campaign to paint them green by those who stand to profit from their construction, there is nothing green about them, especially uranium fueled plants. One can make a better case for thorium fueled plants, a much safer alternative. But if you factor in the cost of storing and maintaining storage on spent fuel for thousands of years, uranium fueled reactors are the most expensive electricity available. And they are not safe. What more evidence is needed to make that point? Mining the uranium is highly destructive to the environment, processing it into fuel creates an enormous waste problem, and there is no way to safely store spent fuel. And the accidents that we have seen in no way approach the worst case scenarios that can occur with a nuclear plant. Even "The ChIna Syndrome" does not portray a worst case scenario. It's quite possible for a reactor to melt down the core and become a permanent nuclear volcano, spewing radioactivity into the environment for hundreds of years, a very possible outcome to the situation in Fukushima. And despite the claims of the nuclear industry, they have a very poor track record. The Hanford plant area in Washington is a nuclear superfund site. Rancho Seco in Sacramento was so poorly designed and built that it spent more time off line than on and the spent fuel is still on the site with no permanent storage solution available. Three Mile Island is a permanent memorial to bad design and poor maintenance practices. There was another small experimental reactor in Idaho that malfunctioned and killed the operators in 1961. And don't even think about Chernobyl, a disaster whose ongoing effects on the environment are still being assessed. The only thing nuclear energy has created that is good is the selflessness of those who died in trying to control the disasters.

    We currently have the technology to produce, with wind and solar power and biofuels all the energy required to run this planet. That inculdes replacing all of the dirty and dangerous coal fired plants now running as well. Nuclear power need not be a part of future power planning and should not, if for no other reason than being economically and environmentally unfeasible when considering the necessity for long term spent fuel storage.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
  228. Pat Garthwaite

    No way. I hate it!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
  229. Troy

    The reactors were built by GE who owns MSNBC, so I KNOW I cannot trust their reporting on this! I don't care what Alex Flint the Lobbyist wants! We want safety and a clean environment. With all of the new technologies available today, continuing with Nuclear is a WRONG DECISION. I'm sure Obama will fight hard for his Corporate Overlords!

    BTW, there isn't enough Wind energy yet because it hasn't been developed as far as Nuclear. It's just a part of many sources!

    It doesn't take Nuclear Fission to make STEAM! GEEZE! WAKE UP!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
  230. Rolf

    Why not look at the alternative with the Candu reactor?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
  231. Faik Eljezovic

    Given the expected increase in the energy demands, I am afraid that the choice is between using Nuclear Power or shivering in the dark!

    March 16, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
  232. Diane Bergmen

    No, Ali, nuclear power must NOT be the future source of energy for America. (Neither should fossil fuels, which pollute our environment in too many ways- witness the Exxon Valdez and recent BP disasters, alone!)
    Observing what is transpiring in northern Japan is a wake up call to ALL nations using nuclear power. America has a prime opportunity to show leadership for the good of all nations – and revive its economy with clean, renewable energy sources. In the process, the economies of the remainder of the world can also flourish by learning to develop renewable, safe energy from solar, wind and wave action.
    Diane B., Sequim, WA

    March 16, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  233. Jackie Cabasso

    There are so many things wrong with nuclear power it's hard to know where to begin! Here's my short list. It's inherently dirty and dangerous – from uranium mining, milling and fuel fabrication, to routine radiation emissions to catastrophic accidents, to spent nuclear fuel lethal for hundreds of thousands of years. Plus, uranium enrichment at the front end to plutonium separation at the back end can be diverted to nuclear weapons production. And, if that's not enough, it's exorbitantly expensive, diverting financial and scientific resources desperately needed for sustainable energy development and other human needs, and fundamentally undemocratic. There's nothing good about nuclear power! While earthquakes and tsunamis are acts of nature, nuclear power accidents and nuclear weapons uses are 100% preventable human-made events.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  234. Nina d'Alessandro

    Why can't wind and solar energy replace one fifth of our nuclear power?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:55 pm |
  235. Charlene

    Nuclear power is not emissions free. Every nuclear reactor releases tritium as a part of its routine operation and not just as the result of accidental leaks or spills. No feasible technology exists that can remove tritium from a reactor’s waste water or from the reactor’s steam releases into the air. The National Academy of Sciences says there is no safe radiation dose: even the smallest amount of tritium can have negative health impacts.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  236. Gary Goldberg

    This is to address the person that was worried about the large amount of nuclear waste. The corporations have not been responsible when it comes to this issue. Since the 1970's there has been plans for reactors that are air cooled which are much cleaner ( no radioactive core water to dispose of ) but the corporations don't want to build them because they cost too much. If you want to make a change for safer energy, then make the companies spend the money to build these air cooled reactors.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
  237. Sandra Lindberg

    Phase out nuclear power because:
    1. Industry experts cannot adequately anticipate or plan for the extremes of man-made or global conditions that can damage/destroy nuclear plants. Remember Japan, Hanford, TMI, Chernobyl, and pollution of the Irish Sea.
    2. Nuclear experts still cannot neutralize the radioactive wastes produced throughout the nuclear fuel chain, though more radioactive waste is produced, and must be stored, each day.
    3. Experts disagree about the harm that low-level radiation causes to human health; yet the industry continues to operate using questionable standards.
    4. Economically viable supplies of fuel-grade uranium grow more scarce every year, even as the cost to build new reactors increases.
    5. Our need for safe energy is immediate; yet planning and building a new nuclear plant must happen slowly to ensure its safe construction.
    6. SAFE ALTERNATIVES TO NUCLEAR EXIST AND DESERVE TO BE FINANCIALLY SUPPORTED: conservation initiatives, alternative and renewable energy, and attempts to use sequestration for coal pollutants. Let's redirect nuclear's human and financial resources to fund initiatives that are really safe, clean, and economically viable.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
  238. Alice Terpstra

    Yes, nuclear power should be used as a source of energy, as long as we only take it from its original big hydrogen bomb source – the sun. Because of the long planetary history of safe use of this type of radiation, we should just stick with that and stop destroying the health and intelligence of future generations with anthropogenic uranium fission products we can't control, contain or clean up.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
  239. Gino

    Yes nuclear power should be used as a source of energy if the US is to achieve energy independence and energy costs are to remain reasonable for consumers. Although solar and wind should also be used, no one should be disillusioned that these sources can produce enough energy to replace coal, gas and nuclear facilities. Since we all take risks in our everyday life it should be recognized that Nuclear has a far superior safety record in terms of casulties than airline and automobile travel. So the benefits of nuclear far outweigh the risk.The Nuclear industry in the US will most certainly review the lessons learned in Japan for possible application to US reactors.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
  240. Doug

    Nuclear power needs extensive regulation and continual monitoring to be safe. Look at Japan and Chernobyl to see how dangerous nuclear power is when something goes wrong. Look to the Gulf of Mexico to see what can happen when energy companies monitor themselves. It is true that there were government inspectors, but there weren't enough of them to do the job, in fact they are so under funded that it's hard to get enough qualified people to do the job. Now look to Wisconsin, Ohio, and Idaho to see how How much opposition there is paying government workers well. The energy itself may be inexpensive, but I don't think America is willing to pay the price to do it well. I believe that, under the right conditions, nuclear power can be safe. I just don't see those conditions being met.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  241. Jeff Brown

    No. Nuclear power is inherently dangerous, as is being amply demonstrated in Japan. Thus it can never be "safe," only more or less dangerous. It's total fuel cycle, also, is not carbon free, and plants should be judged not just on their immediate carbon emissions but on their total fuel cycle. In the US, nuclear power can be replaced by a combination of increased energy efficiency (e.g., most buildings waste 25-30% of their energy), increased use of renewables and the use of natural gas as a transition fuel (provided natural gas drillers no longer be exempted from complying with the Clean Air & Clean Water Acts) - see Carbon Free/Nuclear Free by Dr. Arjun Makhajani at and other studies by renewables experts. Nuclear power should have to stand on their own 2 feet & not be subsidized by the US government. Finally, there still is no solution to the problem of safe nuclear waste disposal/storage, which will be deadly for hundreds of thousands of years - as long as our species has been wandering this earth. The lesson that should be learned from this isn't technical, it's the big picture. It's time to wean ourselves off this deadly distraction.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  242. alice slater

    It would be insane to use nuclear power as a source of energy. It's more expensive than any other power, we don't know how to safely store the toxic waste that lasts for 300,000 years, every nuclear power reactor is a bomb factory producing materials that can be used in nuclear bombs, they are easy targets for terrorists, indeed, Al Qaeda was considering Indian Point nuclear power plant, 25 miles up theHudson from NYC as a target, which makes us lucky that they only took down the World Trade Center, as NY would have been a wasteland and how would you evacuate 20 million people.

    The sun, wind, geothermal, tidal energy, which can be stored in hydrogen fuel cells when the sun doesn't shine and the wind doesn't blow, is free, abundant, and safe all over the planet. We need a global bucket brigade to put a solar panel on every roof, a windmill in every empty windswept field, geothermal pumps in every building and rotors to harness the tides and river currents. We need a time out from fossil, nuclear, ethanol and start employing the clean safe energy of Mother Earth.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
  243. Paula

    I do not believe we should build any more nuclear power plants because the risk of an accident and contamination of the land is not worth it. We need a comprehensive and sustainable energy policy that incorporates all of the alternative clean energies and cannot be the target of a natural or man made disaster.

    My personal experience with a nuclear accident was in 1986 when my college group travelled to Leningrad (St. Petersberg) on the morning of the Chernobyl accident. We were 650 miles away and we were still exposed to a small amount of radio iodine 131. My heart goes out to all of the people of Japan.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
  244. Linda Windforest

    The sun is still shining and the now somewhat more radioactive winds are still blowing, yet the Japanese reactors now experiencing problems will likely never produce electricity again. They are not a reliable energy source, were never cheap if you count the full costs, and would never have been built in the first place had industry responsibility for liabilities not been so limited.

    Repeal the Price Anderson Act, end all subsidies, tax breaks and loan guarantees for the nuclear industry NOW!

    We need safe, reliable clean energy and conservation that will endure. The only enduring thing about nuclear energy is the waste produced (many isotopes of which), will endure long past even our grandchildren's lifetimes.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  245. IYKE

    Regardless of its benefits, Nuclear power exposes our environment to lots of danger ranging from Power plant emissions,Radioactive waste,and a lot more.We can't continue to endanger our lives and that of our children.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  246. Jody Clarke

    Without a doubt we need to re-think our current position on existing and future nuclear power plants in earthquake prone areas. With that being said, your network had a guest on from Georgia Tech stating that new nuclear plants that would be built to replace the Fukushima plants rely on a totally different method for cooling and such a scenario that's playing out now in Japan as well as in the past in Russia, and here in the U.S. could never become an issue as the engineering of these new plants are incredibly safer than those built back in the 70's, and 80's. It can be done safely, without depleting our resources, and in the long run it's cheap. So I would have to say yes yes yes- I'm not exactly a drill baby drill kind of guy although I do support more nuclear energy along with a heavy emphasis on wind and solar where feasible.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:12 pm |

    Investing in nuclear power is no longer necessary for the anyone in the world. Nuclear power should be reserved only for military applications and scientific research. Here is why, finally, nuclear power is unnecessary and now awfully expensive.
    1.) Solar power is now cheaper that nuclear power.
    2.) All it takes for solar power to be cheap is national will power.
    3.) Silicon is the most abundant solid element on the earth.
    4.) All it takes for silicon to be solar grade is manufacturing emphasis.
    5.) Silicon made in quantity for solar power has no other market.
    6.) Germany made more than 50% of the worlds solar silicon in 1990.
    7.) Germany had the will and forethought to incentivize the industry.
    8.) China and others are in the band wagon with solar silicon.
    9.) Germany now makes more silicon yet only 30% of world supply.
    10.) The 34-GW installed in the world today could supply Florida with 30% of its electricity.
    11.) Incentives are going down yet solar keeps growing at 40% per year (or higher).
    12.) Today solar is as cheap as natural gas and cheaper than nuclear.
    13.) Nuclear power relies heavily on government subsidies for handling the fuel.
    14.) Nuclear power relies heavily on 40 year amortizations to make its cost seemingly reasonable.
    15.) Using 40 year amortization on solar electricity would make it "extremely economical".
    16.) It costs more than 12 billion $US for a 1-GW nuclear reactor unit.
    17.) It costs less than 10 billion $US for 5-GW of solar electric power.
    18.) A 5-GW solar electricity installation generates more energy than a 1-GW nuclear plant most anywhere in the US.
    19.) Costs for solar electricity will continue to go down.
    20.) Costs for solar electricity will be as cheap as coal by 2015.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
  248. Yvette

    All forms of nuclear technology should be wiped from the face of the Earth. After Three Mile Island, everyone "got It": there were no new nuclear reactors built. People realized it was not worth the risk. It's sad that we have to relearn this tragic truth.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  249. steph

    NUCLEAR IS BAD!!!! But I know of a technology that is clean, green and SAFE!! It is called Herhof it is a company based out of Germany and been working and running for 15years. It uses our waste to produce electricity cleanly because all the recylced human hands do NOT have to touch the waste it mechanically seperates it EVEN glass down to color and the left over that cannot be recycled gets turned into a "GREEN" stablite and burned "GREENLY" for energy! And we can produce this for LESS than SEVEN CENTS a kilowatt hour!

    March 16, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  250. Judy

    Humans are not smart enough to use nuclear energy safely when they don't understand how deadly it can be.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  251. Andrea Gotsch

    Simply stated "No" and you don't have to be a nuclear physicist to figure it out just watch what is happening in Japan and remember what has happened in the past (Chernobyl and Three Mile Island). I don't recall a windmill or a solar panel putting a whole country at risk.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
  252. Lee Ann Olohan

    Nuclear power should NOT be used in the United States. Our elected officials and the nuclear industry claim that nuclear power is safe, cheap, and reliable. It is definitely none of the above.

    One look at Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, and now Japan tells us it's clearly not safe. In addition, let's not forget the damage to the environment, and to human health, caused by "normal" operation of these plants. There are astronomical cost overruns associated with virtually every nuclear plant. Add to that the huge taxpayer subsidies given to the industry, and there is no way anyone can prove that it's cheap. Throw in the astronomical cost of disaster response and clean up attempts, and it becomes exponentially expensive. One need only to look at any article on the current situation in Japan to realize that it is not reliable. It is beyone man's ability to control, and poses too much of a threat to every living being on Earth.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
  253. Donna C.

    You just interviewed an 'expert' who said, "The problem is..." and then went on to talk about sea water vs "clean" water.

    I think when people eventually delve into the 'ultimate' cause they will go back to why each of the back-up cooling systems did not function more than a few hours. The 'system' already had 'redundancy' built-in to ensure safety. Some part of that fail-safe system 'should' have worked.

    Insert the phrase "corporate profits." And think back to the 2002 TEPCO scandal when the company admitted to falsifying safety documents. They failed to report 29 incidents of serious leaks and cracks in reactors at three nuclear plants during the1980s and 1990s.

    Do you think that engineers and/or executives did not report 'accurately' simply because they were careless?..or stupid? More likely they were simply trying to comply with a corporate mandate to MAXIMIZE PROFITS.

    More likely, shut-down times required to remedy the deficiencies found were estimated to 'too costly.' More likely, executives evaluated 'associated risks' and decided 'NOT' to report and repair.

    So.Ali, despite the claims of your interviewee...that there are currently adequate engineering solutions to make nuclear energy safe... nuclear energy will NEVER be safe!

    It won't be safe because there will always be some lower level executive trying to please a higher level executive...who is trying to please a Board of Directors or...industry analysts or...stockholders.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  254. Richard

    Nuclear energy should be kept, but it needs more back up safety systems in place for natural disasters and tsunami's.
    I really wish we have more solar panels every roof can have them and no fall out like that of nuclear plants.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  255. Rachael Wood

    First of all, we do need to increase use of wind and solar energy and be looking for new types of energy sources. I am against nuclear power however, i do realize we can't just make it obsolete. We need to eliminate all nuclear plants in any disaster zones and should be re evaluating old plants to determine there safety. The bottom line is unless we want to resort to a life style that doesn't completely rely on power were going to have to keep nuclear power until we can find a better, greener source.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
  256. Peg Sturmfels

    The continued willingness of the US to support and re- license an aging, rusting, design-flawed energy source (Oyster Creek Nuclear Power Plant) that can wipe out 1/2 the east coast and place millions of lives at risk if their is a major power outage of the grid is at best lazy for their cut and paste review processes, and at worst, criminal in their indifference to public safety in favor of a pro- industry rubber stamp.
    If the billions of tax payer monies used to subsidized nukes had gone into research and development of wind and solar, this 1940's technology would not have made it out of the 60's. And any one that says nuclear power is carbon free is completely ignoring the very dirty business of mining and processing uranium, the spent fuel, and the building of these plants.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
  257. Gian Punis

    Absolutely we should use nuclear power. We are all over-reacting to the present situation in Japan, just like we overreacted to the 3 Mile Island incident and probably to the Chernobyl catastrophe. We have to consider the cost/benefit ratio of these things. How many humans have perished from nuclear power plant accidents since its adoption (50-60 years)? Perhaps 1000-2000 (I am just guessing) from Chernobyl; maybe a few hundred more from some other more minor events. So let's extrapolate that to even a worst case cost of 200 deaths/year world-wide, for the benefit of getting 25% (another guess) of our electric power . Compare that to the number of people who succumb in traffic accidents (40000/year in the US); or compare to the estimated 10,000 deaths/year due to the use of coal. How about the 20,000 deaths from gun use (which, debatably, has almost no benefits). If we decide to eliminate further use of nuclear power because of these rare fatalities, then we should immediately take steps to eliminate most cars and provide universal public transportation; likewise, we must eliminate all guns, as well as use of coal plants – clearly this would not be acceptable.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  258. Stephen Brittle

    Recently, a Harvard study found that subsidies to US nuclear plants cost 5 cents/kilowatt. When added to the cost to ratepayers, it makes nuclear energy the most expensive type of electricity. Now the disaster in japan underscores the costs when things go wrong. This nation needs an energy policy that ends nuclear power and switches to energy efficiency and renewable energy. We should not be at risk to ensure the profits or utility companies.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  259. Liane Casten

    Nothing , absolutely nothing can be as corrupt as taking money from those who will profit from more nuclear plants and then ignoring the very real dangers. Japan will not recover for years; its population will suffer greatly and its economy is equally tenuous. To even think we can do it better in the US is dangerous and foolish and dishonest. Nature has a way of foiling the best laid plans. And so do humans who can always be counted on to make some kind of mistake.
    We must invest in sustainable technology now and stop lying to ourselves and to each other.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
  260. Ellen Thomas

    Why not? (1) No hope to eliminate nuclear weapons with nuclear power plants producing weapons grade materials;
    (2) Huge costs, pollution and dollars, of all parts of the nuclear chain, from uranium mining to processing to power plants to transportation to figuring out how to safely store highly radioactive materials by the TONS, FOREVER. How to change? Obama's budget calls for billions for new nuclear weapons development and facilities. Spend that money instead for nuclear-free, carbon-free, renewable energy for ALL.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  261. Dreadsen

    If Nuclear power is as safe as its proponents suggest then why it it that no private company will insure one? They had to have Big Nanny Government insure the Nuclear Plants. Lets apply some privatization for those who want it for everything and stop all Government Insurance of Nuclear plants and force them to get a private insurer and if they can not get one they must shut down. The private industry has always known that nuclear energy is too dangerous that even if only is a 5% risk that 5% would be far too devastating for them to risk insuring. This event proves it right here. And if they suggest that those plants are too old and a new plant would solve it. Then i say yet again okay. When you build your new one get a private insurer if it's so safe.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  262. Tom Kruzen

    Conservation, alternative energy sources like tidal, geothermal, wind turbines and solar panels have never and never will pose a threat to humanity like nuclear power will. These, plus efficient lights (LEDs) and energy saving appliances are a much more sane and safe way to power our homes and have our modern conveniences. A pound of plutonium takes 24,100 years to decay to a 1/2 pound. Nuclear catastrophies put that technology beyond human scale!

    March 16, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
  263. Mary Jane Williams

    The whole nuclear era has been a tragic mistake. We must bring it to an end NOW.
    1. CLOSE all 23 reactors of the GE Mark I design.
    2. Stop all government loan programs for nuclear.
    3. Phase out all current nuclear plants over about 13 years, and replace the energy with renewables. If we cannot replace it all we'll just have to ration electricity. (We rationed in World War II. We can do it again.)
    4. STOP the socalled "modernization" of the nuclear weapons complex, which means the planning for another round of plutonium, weapons grade uranium, and non-nuclear component factories.
    5. Call for a United Nations resolution to abolish nuclear weapons and nuclear power.

    (If our governments won't go along with this, the people will - at this point. And the revolutions in the Middle East show that the people now have the means to force governments to do the right thing.)

    March 16, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
  264. Lynn Colorado

    No WAY!! With all that's going on in Japan, it should be a wake-up call to all other nation, especially OURS. We need to GO GREEN and CLEAN, such as solar or wind. Easily available, low cost and efficient. Not to mention Healthy, Safe and Economical. With natural disasters on the rise and our economy on the low... it's the only way to go!!

    March 16, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
  265. Dennis F. Nester

    Nuclear power fulfills many agendas. It emits invisible,
    ultra-long-lasting, DNA damaging radiation. Everyone
    eats, drinks and breathes radioactive fallout since the
    first atom bomb "test" in New Mexico, USA, 1945.

    So-called "civilian" nuclear power plants are a myth, a
    way to grab tax payer money and create the BIG STICK
    of political might. The rest is PR to entrench nuclear power.

    The issue is genetic integrity, 'your tax money AND your life'.
    There are many non-toxic ways to turn a wheel and produce
    electricity. I like the idea of ocean wave power.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
  266. Barak

    With nuclear terror upon us, I think the gut reaction is to say no, we should not be using nuclear power for energy. But the pro-nukes are going to argue that there is no viable alternative. Today, March 16th, 2011, yes they are right. Nuclear power is massive scale power. But, nuclear power plants are susceptible to damage and destruction, by forces of nature that seem to be becoming ever more powerful and severe. We've had historic earthquakes across the globe. Is anyone paying attention? The ring of fire is on fire! Just because there isn't an immediate alternative doesn't mean there isn't an alternative. That's why large scale solar thermal power plants should be massively funded and put into operation in a large scale way. Take a company like BrightSource Energy. They are in the process of building a solar electric field that will power 700,000 or 800,000 homes. Yes, it is located in desert lands. Yes, there are tortoises that have to be moved to new locations. But, this is clean energy. We will never have to worry about nuclear radiation exposure, cancer, death. This technology invovles the sun, which last time we checked isn't going anywhere, and no one owns the sun's rays, as in we don't have to be dependent on foriegn countries in the Middle East who own oil fields. This technology invovles heating up liquid, water, until it become super heated steam and then sending through a well established technology called a steam turbine engine. Similar if not the same steam turbine engines that power nuclear energy. Only the power source is drastically different. One nuclear, a killer if not contained. The other, solar, what could happen? In an earthquake, some mirrors break, glass falls to the ground. A tsunami hits, the mirror field gets washed away. These are not death ridden tragedies. The only reason the US govt is not going all out on solar is because the funding is hard to get, and the land is hard to get. President Obama is all for solar energy. But the agency that manages land can not clear enough of it for solar electric energy to become a big player. People need to make their voices heard. We need to revolution. We need to give up on nuclear and even fossil based fuels and energies and put everything we've got into solar electric. Now. While we still have a chance to save our planet.

    March 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
  267. JBG

    The Japanese are world models for being meticulous and thorough. If they were not able to prevent unexpected events from leading to nuclear power catastrophe, no one can.

    It is crazy to arrange our lives so that avoiding humongous destruction can be accomplished only by sustained human perfection. But nuclear power requires both perfect foresight and perfect management for periods of decades. The nuclear waste problem, still unsolved, may require perfect management for centuries or millenia.

    In the US, the situation is exacerbated by acceptance of risks even when foreseen, often slovenly management, and loose regulation. For example, the Indian Point station is built on a fault judged vulnerable to a magnitude 7 quake, but is built to sustain only a magnitude 3 quake. A disaster at Indian Point could affect the entire New York metropolitan area. Then there is the fact that "test" security incursions at nuclear plants succeed a fairly large proportion of the time...even though the plants receive advance notice of when such tests are imminent.

    Aside from all this, Amory Lovins and others have documented that nuclear power is thoroughly uneconomic. Even though a "mature" technology, no nuclear plant would have a chance as a private investment anywhere in the world. Nuclear plants are built only with massive subsidies extracted from taxpayers.

    The whole thing is crazy and has been so from the beginning. Just say no!

    March 16, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
  268. Bruce Maeda

    The major problem with nuclear power as a more significant source of world energy supply is the nuclear fuel cycle will ultimately require reprocessing fuel as yellowcake (Uranium fuel) is limited and will be in short supply especially with growth in nuclear energy use. Reprocessing fuel can extend nuclear energy use at much higher risks of contamination and nuclear (or dirty bomb) weapons proliferation as it requires the use of plutonium in nuclear fuel that must be shipped to commercial reactors.

    The Japanese reactors currently undergoing problems are of special note because – in at least one of the reactors – recently (late 2010) they started to use MOX fuel (shipped to Japan from France) containing plutonium in spite of protests from Japanese environmentalists. If plutonium is in the burn products from any of these plants it is much more dangerous. It has a half-life of tens of thousands of years as opposed to a few days (deuterium, tritium – hydrogen isotopes or Iodine 131) or a few years (radioactive Cesium). If plutonium-contaminated releases become widely dispersed (burn particulates or vapors) by the problems at the Japanese reactors the contamination will last for millenia.

    In general reprocessing nuclear fuel relies on breeder reactors (in my opinion much more dangerous than commercial burner reactors), the extensive shipment of plutonium with its inherent risks of theft for nuclear weapon materials or dirty bomb materials, and even more difficult waste shipment and storage issues than for current spent fuel rods. One of the reasons for the use of MOX fuel seems to be use and isolation of weapons grade plutonium from decommissioned nuclear weapons. The plutonium is used for fuel in MOX and, when spent, the argument is the spent fuel rods are too radioactively hot to use for weapons but this makes for more dangerous spent fuel storage. Of course the plutonium from weapons is already there and we've made our deal with the devil on that but do we need to put even more people and resources at risk by commercializing the use and shipment of plutonium in fuel rods? But not doing this means that nuclear fuel will not last very long especially if we increase its use.

    March 16, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  269. Gloria Fallon


    Nuclear power plants make us vulnerable in many ways.

    We have not figured out what to do with the radioactive waste. How dare we leave radioactive materials in the ground for our ancestors to deal with in the future.

    I would think that terrorists would find a nuclear power plant a worth while target. What to prevent them from flying a plane into a nuclear power plant?

    One new nuclear power plant cost 3 billion dollars. Why can't we invest this in wind and solar?

    Here in Illinois we do not need to worry too much about earthquakes, but there is a real threat of flooding. Many of our nuclear power plants are along rivers and next to lakes.

    My vote is for solar and wind.

    March 16, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  270. Debra Michaud

    NO! Nuclear energy is not safe, it is not clean, and it is not fair to future generations (let alone our own). How much longer are we going to trash and ruin the earth, before we wake up??? Will it be too late? Our disposable society is living with 2 foot headlights, headed for a cliff. Time to wake up and change directions on our energy policy.

    March 16, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  271. VALaker

    The nuclear disaster in Japan has demonstrated that nuclear power cannot be 100% accident proof. When you weigh this against potentially devastating and long-lasting impacts of a nuclear power accident, it becomes obvious that nuclear power is not a viable option. In addition to being inherently unsafe, nuclear power is also outrageously costly but its costs are not apparent to an average citizen, as they are buried in various taxpayer subsidies and electric rate hikes. Even before the nuclear disaster in Japan the future of the nuclear power expansion in this country was questionable due to its high costs and availability of cheaper alternatives.

    The high cost of nuclear power is associated with the expense of constructing a power plant that is supposed to withstand to a certain extent the rage of nature and man-made catastrophes. It's obvious that despite the expensive design, nuclear power plants still fail. So how much more money needs to be poured into the nuclear power safety to make it 100% safe? The nuclear power is already prohibitively costly.

    In addition to being unsafe and costly, nuclear power is not carbon free, contrary to the popular belief. Production of nuclear fuel starts with uranium mining and milling; both are very energy intensive industrial operations involving the use of heavy machinery and electricity, as well as water, our most precious resource. Studies have shown that over time higher grade uranium deposits are used up, and extracting uranium from lower grade deposits will require even more electricity and diesel fuel.

    Last but not least, the major concern with the nuclear power is what to do with the nuclear waste it generates. At this time, the US has no repository for nuclear waste and it is kept on-site in special containers that are exposed to weather elements. NRC relinceses the use of those corroding containers with a horrifying ease.

    March 16, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  272. Linda Lotz

    We must end all use of nuclear power, atomic bombs, and nuclear based weapons such as depleted uranium.

    1) As someone who lived through the 1979 accident at Three Mile Island, I must remind everyone that "accidents will happen." That is, Murphy's Law is correct in that at some point, things can go wrong.

    2) In spite of several decades of relying on nuclear power, there still is not a safe way to dispose of nuclear waste. Some parts of the nuclear waste cycle will require thousands of years to stop emitting dangerous radiation. We cannot place such a burden on those who come so many years after us.

    3) Alternative energy is far cheaper, if one considers all the government and ratepayer subsidies for nuclear power generation, insurance and waste.

    4) Finally, failure of a solar panel or wind generator will not create the kind of dangerous, uncontrollable radiation exposure we have seen at Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and now Japan, or other dangers that would affect large numbers of people. Federal funds should be used to advance research into renewable, alternative energies.

    March 16, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  273. Francisco Aguilar

    When all the costs of running a nuclear plant are paid by the companies that feel so confident on their safety then and only then I will feel that they are serious about their claims. I understand the the Congress of the US passed an insurance protection to the operators of this plants, "The Price Anderson Act" check your house insurance papers, and surprise, surprise, no insurance in case of radiation leaks or nuclear accidents!!!
    How would you like it if your car manufacturer would ask the Congress for such protection?
    When I climb on an airplane, I, as an individual make the conscious decision to take the risk of dying in case of an accident but I do not accept the risk of being radiated with my family and my sons for the benefit of this operators. And remember the airlines insure their planes and their passengers for all eventualities.

    March 16, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
  274. Carol Stark

    NO-MORE-NUKES!! We already know of the inherent dangers, storage issues, half life of 1000 years, and the potential for disaster is just as prevalent here. Many of the Nuclear plants in our country are built on fault lines–we have earthquakes here as well. Maybe the Tsumani threat is less of a concern, but the earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters are not! This strategy of building MORE of these plants should be abandoned in place of CLEAN alternatives. If we had concentrated on GREEN alternatives 40 years ago, when they were first mentioned, this scenario most likely would have been prevented

    March 16, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
  275. Daryl Clark

    Odd as it sounds, I believe this is a perfect time to move fwd w/ nuclear power in the US. As others have said, we will learn SO much the tragedies in Japan...about earthquakes, tsunamis, nuclear reactors...things that would not be possible in simulations. Something good can, must, come out of this for the whole world.

    My question is, how forthcoming will our gov be in identifying/alerting us on the west coast, particularly Alaska, re radioactive winds coming this way over the next 3d, and does the gov have stockpiles of iodine tablets and a distribution plan?

    March 16, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  276. Marilyn McCulloch

    Nuclear power generation is not safe, not clean, not renewable and unpredictable. It is terribly expensive and terribly dangerous. The people in Japan are paying the price for an experiment that has gone completely wrong. The nuclear industry cannot predict every possible problem and radioactive exposure is not something we can "undo". There is no solution for the waste either. This is a failed technology and the risks far outweigh any benefit. Turn to renewable, sustainable, safe and decentralized power sources and save the beautiful planet and her people.

    March 16, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
  277. Chad

    I don't think we have much of a choice, what will immediately take the place of the 104 reactors operating in the US right now? Additionally, what would be the specific basis for abandoning nuclear power? Is it the loss of human lives? Is it the impact that it has on the environment? The hysteria that an accident generates? Let's compare nuclear energy with other sources that are currently supplying the grid...

    March 16, 2011 at 9:08 pm |
  278. Barry

    Modern nuclear power plants do not exist. THey are 40 or more years old. Have u tried drilving a 40 year old car recently.....that. Is one that has been used daily for 40 years? Chances are it does not work well. Modern deigns of nuclear power plants are safe and is absurd to believe other wise.
    Barry Rodgers

    March 16, 2011 at 9:23 pm |
  279. Norma Field

    Nuclear power represents risks that are too great to be pursued.
    (1) We are currently seeing the impact of the unlikely but hardly impossible congruence of factors resulting in an accident;
    (2) Even without accidents, waste disposal and storage represent problems that have at present no answers;
    (3) Even normal operation represents health risks to workers and residents nearby, risks that tend to be unmonitored and certainly undisclosed.

    All our scientific resources should be going into developing alternative sources of energy and social-psychological-cultural resources into promoting responsible living.

    March 16, 2011 at 9:37 pm |
  280. Linda Gunter

    Not. Too dangerous, too expensive, too slow to build to address climate change; no solution to the waste problem anywhere in the world; violates human rights (fuel is uranium mined on indigneous lands); terrorist target. And the outcome of a complete failure so catastrophic as to pose an unacceptable risk. Why take this kind of immoral gamble with the lives of your own people when there are safer, cleaner, cheaper alternatives – solar, wind, energy efficiency etc.

    March 16, 2011 at 9:45 pm |
  281. Randy Bartlett

    NO NUKES!!!-(...4 ARMS or POWER...all the safety engineering in the world is not can provide jobs & sustainable power 24/7/365 to power America's homes & businesses w/out the horrific risks of nuclear energy!!!

    March 16, 2011 at 9:56 pm |
  282. Lord Farquad

    Why is the Federal Government even in the business of determining how we power ourselves? Really? Isn't that a decision for private agents and private action?

    Well, since we do regulate it, (sigh) Nuclear Power plants should not be built on earthquake faults. They should not be built where people do NOT want them. They should not be built where they pose an unnecessary risk. They should be built back East, in high population centers, where there are many registered Democrats....

    March 16, 2011 at 9:57 pm |
  283. Kay

    Where to start with how I "feel" about nuclear as an option for anything. How I feel is extremely sad for the people of Japan. How I feel is frightened for people everywhere that may be contaminated by this disaster.
    How I feel is despairing, given that our gov't seems intent on continuing it's arrogant assumption that nature can be 'tamed' enough to make the practice safe – enough. "Safe enough" to still show a profit, that is.
    Tax dollars build these monstrosities according to specs that only include as much safety as we really 'need', so we can turn these publicly funded plants over to private corporations to make a profit from.
    And then the stupid corporations don't even pay taxes on that profit. But they give 'jobs' to a couple of people in the short term, and those people pay taxes. So it's all good, right? What our narrow-visioned, bought-and-paid-for politicians choose to ignore is that:
    a) Uranium is scarce. Too scarce to count on for long-term energy.
    b) Mining of uranium is extremely toxic, as is the manufacture of fuel pellets.
    c) Loosening environmental restrictions will put us at even greater risk than Japan because...
    d) The violence of weather is escalating, as is the shifting of the Tectonic plates.
    So, yup...sad, frightened & despairing about sums it up.

    March 16, 2011 at 10:05 pm |
  284. Deborah Dix

    Nuclear Power should not be used as a power source because it is so dangerous if something happens.

    The nuke groups are say Nuke power is clean and green, the beginning of the cycle is full of CO2, uranium mining plus the waste is forever!

    No to Nukes, not safe, not clean, not needed, US, stop pushing nukes and our monies to the greedy nukes!

    March 16, 2011 at 10:12 pm |
  285. ocean lover

    We should not use nuclear power, because things happen like in Japan. I would rather use candles, than be killed or sickened by radiation. maybe if we spent all the money we waste on wars trying to find alternate, SAFE ways to make energy we would already be doing so?????

    March 16, 2011 at 10:19 pm |
  286. William Allen

    What is happening in Japan should be a wake up call to the world! Nuclear Energy is neither "clean" nor "safe." Nuclear energy proponents will claim that this is an isolated incident due to an extremely rare set of circumstances. And while it is true that many areas do not experience 8.9 earthquakes or tsunamis ever, every area is prone to some kind of extreme weather event or natural disaster. What these events do tell us is that we are being incredibly short sighted in our planning for such disasters. With a nuclear reactor, there is no safe margin of error.

    The thing that frightens me the most about this is the downplaying of the seriousness of the possible release of radiation from these reactors. While this may not be another "Chernobyl,' the area surrounding these reactors are far more densely populated. While no one may die instantly, hundreds of thousands may die slow, torturous deaths from various forms of cancer due to exposure. And we won't know this for 20 to 30 years from now and only then if honest extensive studies are done of the population.

    March 16, 2011 at 10:21 pm |
  287. Rob Haberman

    We can either try to cope with regular and progressively worse nuclear plant disasters over time, (Japan may yet be worse than Chernobyl), or we can cope with a lower electricity supply from not building new plants and closing existing ones. I would much rather we deal with the latter. Nuclear is a technology that really shouldn't be used for much, if anything at all.

    March 16, 2011 at 10:23 pm |
  288. Jeremy

    I've given it a lot of thought in the past. I am against nuclear power. I don't think the so-called experts are correct calling it "clean" energy. Nuclear power plants may emit less carbons, but overall, nuclear power is unclean and potentially very dangerous. Nuclear power requires that humans running it never make a mistake, never slack on maintenance, etc. Also, as Will Durant is quoted, "Civilization exists by geological consent, subject to change without notice." We see how things out of our control can have a very negative influence on the operations of nuclear power plants. The proliferation of more nuclear plants would also signify and increased need to transport potentially dangerous materials, which could become easier to hijack by terrorists. Also, in direct challenge to the supposed claim of "clean" energy, science has not solved the toxic waste issue. Their only suggestions are to bury the waste in tight containers or to release it into space. In other words, leave it to the future generations. Also, the oil business keeps us from expanding into safer forms of energy. Nuclear is allowed and encouraged because it relies completely on central distribution (like oil), and it has no potential for energy autonomy, which should be the goal of the people. Renewable energy sources do allow for energy autonomy. If people were not so negative about solar, maybe we'd finally begin using it!

    March 16, 2011 at 10:24 pm |
  289. eric ostrander

    Nuclear power could still be an option for clean energy, both here and abroad, but it should be fairly obvious that the tenets of modern capitalism does not lend itself to building "safe" nuclear reactors. Contracts are given to the lowest bidder, whom in turn builds that facility with profitability being the primary concern. If you ask for a cheap nuclear power station, you will get one. Rather than invest in safer designs like gravel-bed reactors, or investing in Thorium reactors (which can be very expensive, but are both cleaner and safer), we rely on market principles which, in comparison with cost-effectiveness and profitability, promotes minimum standards in safety, responsibility, and sustainability. Thorium reactors are expensive, and would require significant investments in developing a Thorium-based infrastructure, but it would be FAR safer and FAR cleaner than ANY modern, commercial nuclear power plant. Whereas current reactors must constantly regulate fission, Thorium reactors must constantly maintain fission using a particle accelerator. Unlike modern commercial nuclear power, you can actually turn off a Thorium reactor. Modern reactors can only be subdued and contained as we can all painfully see in Japan. Another benefit from a Thorium reactor is waste material with a 500 yr lifespan, vs. a 10,000 yr lifespan. Seems like the right choice to me, but i guess the price is what's important, isn't it?

    March 16, 2011 at 11:01 pm |
  290. Jean

    Absolutely no Nukes..Radiation is very dangerous and long lasting..Authorities cannot be trusted..How could anyone in their right mind think it is safe to keep spent fuel next to a reactor that may blow up..Ot is total INSAnity...There is a reason insurance companies will not insure nuclear plants...The saddest thing in the world was seein g those BABIES being checked for radiation...What standard of living is worth that?????????? Save our wter Go Green before the money markets collapse into uselessness

    March 16, 2011 at 11:07 pm |
  291. K. Feilmeyer

    No; we should start a concerted effort now to make a global switch away from coal, oil, and nuclear to wind, solar, and geothermal energy sources. These 21st century energy sources are green, renewable, and much safer than our old fuels. Renewable energy is right for the environment and our economy.

    March 16, 2011 at 11:30 pm |
  292. Mary

    Nuclear should never be used as a source of energy. Mistakes will always be made, disasters happen, and there is no way to properly safeguard highly radioactive material. This is not technology we should use in any circumstances. We all need to use less energy, and put federal money into alternative energy research. The energy barons own America, and we have to remember we cannot relocate as a country if we experience what Japan is right now. Radiation is very real and very deadly, and is not something we should so casually experiment with. It causes mutations for multiple generations, cancer of all types, and is only used because the nuclear industry is so powerful.

    March 16, 2011 at 11:38 pm |
  293. Talia Rose

    When the people who profit from nuclear power are willing to walk into a melting down reactor and give their lives to save their country, then maybe nuclear will be acceptable. When our government and others start telling us the truth about how many people really died longeterm as a result of the 3 Mile Island and Chernobyl, then maybe the people can make an educated decision about whether they want the risks. They lie. People die. Go Solar!

    March 17, 2011 at 12:19 am |
  294. James McGuinness

    After witnessing the events occurring in Japan, I don't see how anyone can believe that nuclear power is safe. If the US refused to subsidize nuclear power or force the company that produces nuclear waste to take care of te waste forever, we would not have this problem.

    March 17, 2011 at 12:23 am |
  295. Ali Khan

    Hello all mankind
    I want all nuclear power plants to be shut down. We can deal with global warming or acid rain but cannot deal with radioactive atoms in air, soil, food and water.

    Ali Khan
    Lahore, Pakistan

    March 17, 2011 at 2:28 am |

    I live near Pueblo, CO, which is approximately 110 miles South
    of Denver on I-25. Currently there is new discussion about the
    possibility of building a new nuclear power plant Southeast of Pueblo.
    I am not a "greenie", but there is a huge area of about 250 miles wide
    by 900 miles long, East of I-25 from the CO/NM border all the way
    to the U.S/Canadian border. At any one time, this area has very good
    wind energy potential, is very low density in population, and has some
    wind turbines but not many given the total sq. miles involved. I
    personally would like to see serious effort put in to developing this
    resource. Joe

    March 17, 2011 at 4:03 am |
  297. Juanita

    We should decommission our older nuclear power plants. We should move away from nuclear power generation. This can not be done overnight, it takes years.
    In the interim, we should be putting up wind generators and solar plants. We should be building homes, apartment complexes, and industrial buildings greener, to reducing our need for energy. Lift planning/zoning regulations nation-wide that prohibit homeowners from installing vertical axis wind generators on their property. Let homes, apartments, and industrial building generate some or all of their electrical requirements through solar and wind.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:37 am |
  298. Tom Clements

    New reactors should be stopped and phase-out of others planned for. Not worth it to face such disasters on a massive and enduring scale all because of faulty machines to boil water? Being subjected to such a disaster or living in fear of it means nuclear power is too dangerous.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:42 am |
  299. Elena Day

    Nuclear power should not be used as a source of energy. The entire cycle is greenhouse gas producing – mining, milling, processing into fuel rods (four coal plants in Paducah,KY are running just to produce the lethal stuff). Electrical generation might not produce greenhouse gases but look at the kind of highly radioactive, toxic waste produced that is sitting at nuclear power sites all over our country in water storage pools. You've seen what happens if those spent fuel rods lose their water immersion. And these will continue to sit and increase since the nuclear industry and the government has no clue as to where or how to permanently dispose of this lethal waste.

    March 17, 2011 at 8:41 am |
  300. Joanna

    Use of nuclear power isn't acceptable unless higher level technology permits consumption of all fuel and leaves no waste.Resources would better go into reducing demand for power and being more efficient.

    March 17, 2011 at 10:49 am |
  301. Brian

    Off course we should, but more efforts into safety conerns, I am sure after 30+ years we could come up with something pretty good if motivated enough

    March 17, 2011 at 11:20 am |
  302. Cecile Meyer

    Definitely not. Nuclear power involves costs and risks far too great for any industry to undertake without us, the taxpayers, bearing both, while they reap the profits. The suffering and alarm of workers and residents within miles of Japan's now damaged reactors should serve as warning to us to resist opposition of nuclear proponents and proceed with developing safe, alternative sources of power, along with an all out effort to reduce our careless waste of energy in our daily lives. Let's do what we can to conserve the earth's treasures for the sake of our children and grandchildren.

    March 17, 2011 at 11:47 am |
  303. Heather

    Yes it one of the safest and cleanest the technology has come a long way in 35+ years. Also we need something since we are running out of oil which not a renewable source or until we can find another energy source.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  304. Tony Taylor

    Yes. If used responsibly, the risk is very low. It beats destroying the entire atmosphere with greenhouse gasses.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  305. Sara Kepple

    Absolutely it should be used as a source of energy. I know ignorant people are swept up in the drama right now, but we need to stay smart and remember how safe and clean nuclear energy typically is.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
  306. Tony

    Of course nuclear should be used as a source of power. The idea that it is dangerous is derived purely from the irresponsibility of the user. If you develop a safe operation of that nuclear power then why should you not use it? Look at all the plants here in the us that have been operating for 30 years now.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
  307. Ian

    Those attacking Nuclear power root their argument in ideology and emotion rather then logic and practicality. You hear emotionally charged statements like "total catastrophy" without metrics to put it in proportion.

    I am imagining now our energy situation mirroring that of France – where almost all our energy needs are met by nuclear.....

    Coal plants dissapear and along with it mountain top removal (we destroy entire mountain ranges yet get hung up on Yucca mtn in the nuclear debate), carbon sequestration, smog and and carbon emmisions fall by the wayside... Electric production capacity would increase providing the infrastructure to support the coming future of electric vehicles.... The billions sent to the middle east would begin to dry up along with our conflicts of interest there and financial support of unstable nations....

    Nuclear materials (uranium, plutonium, thorium) are abundant inside the US which would be a huge economic boost – keeping money and jobs spend on energy HERE..... Hard line leftists and environmentalist do nothing but maintain the status quo.... How do they expect us to meet our growing energy needs??? they scream at coal and clean coal, hydro, nuclear – even at wind power for migrating birds and hydo for local river ecology..... but by giving no reasonable solution, they only keep things as they are.... They claim all kinds of environmental and safety issues with nuclear – clearly hyper-inflating reality.... Are there problems with nuclear? Sure...... but they PALE in comparison to other sources of energy production.............

    Remember, an average sized nuclear plant operates for about 40 years and in that time generates no carbon emmisions, only water vapor, and results (for the life of the plant) in high level nuclear waste the size of a small house – add to that an annual energy production of 1 million homes.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
  308. Noel Garber

    Absolutely. From an engineering perspective, every system has one or more faults, which are continually improved. If difficulties are found in the current reactors, there is no reason why new reactors should not be built to circumvent those problems. If used responsibly, and with ideal safety conditions, nuclear power is an excellent source of power that is not nearly as destructive to the environment as the burning of coal and other hydrocarbons.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  309. sharon

    Human being is playing dangerous games while using nuclear. We need to remain to in the dimension of molecule. it is not up to humans to play with atoms.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  310. scott

    Nuclear energy is definitely a better resource than coal or oil. I think we should take a better look at our own facilities and see what we can do to make them safer in the event of an earthquake.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  311. Ken

    Uranium and Plutonium plants should be decommissioned. They started nuclear power testing with thorium. That is what we should use again. No meltdown, no waste, no dangerous side products for nuclear weapons.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  312. LRiley

    Yes, even coal and wood are dangerous. Even with nuclear power, its how you use/control them.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  313. Chris

    The U.S. Navy operates more nuclear reactors than the rest of the world combined and has a stellar safety record. We HAVE to expand our use of nuclear power!!!!!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  314. jennifer

    If you play with fire – you're gonna get burned... sooner or later – you will get burned. The price is just too high if and when something goes wrong and there is no possible way to guarantee it won't because we cannot predict mother nature. The answer should be simple - NO.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  315. Mike in Pennsylvania, USA

    Nuclear power is currently the only "clean" option available to produce large amounts of energy.

    Yes, there are risks, but how many lives have been lost fighting wars in oil producing areas of the world?

    Until we come up with something better, nuclear energy is the only way to produce large amounts of energy. Still, we must look at every possible scenario and analyze every accident as we go along.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  316. H Perez

    Nuclear power is becoming obsolete, and our stubbornness to keep it is endangering everyone. Renewal energy technology is developing, growing, and expanding by leaps and bounds. When is the last time you heard hundreds of thousands of lives came under danger because a solar panel exploded....that's right, we haven't. So why continue on this highly dangerous path of nuclear power?

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  317. Dave

    We should still use nuclear energy as a clean and safe source of energy. 30,000 – 40,000 people die every year in the US due to fatal car accidents. Does that mean we should stop driving? No, we just need to be more careful!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  318. Nathan Sosa

    Nuclear power generates waste. Waste typically ends up in rural areas where it is out of sight and out of mind. The American's in these areas are disproportionately poorer compared to the rest of the country. Waste should be given to the share holders of the companies as the reap the financial benefits.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  319. Brittanie Dudley

    Yes I believe that Nuclear Energy should be used as an energy source. But we should find better ways to make sure that in case of an emergency we will be able to keep them undercontrol.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  320. Randall

    Spent fuel rods need to be stored securely for some 20,000 years! Our politicians and business leaders seem incapable of looking even four years into the future. For this reason alone I say stay away from nuclear power.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  321. John

    Hydrogen is the fuel that powers the universe. We have an unlimited supply of hydrogen in water. Electrolysis is a cheap way that solar power can be used to seperate hydrogen from water. The hydrogen can be stored to generate electricity at any time, even on a cloudy day.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  322. Sherry Garner

    Ok, so what are our choices? Can't use nuclear power because we might have a melt down. Can't drill for oil because it might cause pollution. Can't use solar or hydrogen because we don't have the infrastructure. Can't use coal because it's dirty. Guess we'll have to just keep on paying the Saudis until Saudi Arabia runs dry or we go broke, whichever comes first.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  323. Thang

    Until we can understand cold fusion, Nuclear power is one of the best source for power. Wind power and Solar power is still a great power source also, but there are those whom are in the political parties whom are against green energy due to GREED. Like those who benefit money from Oil Corps. while they make BILLIONS off of the public. We need to discovery other way of energy that can produce much power as Nuclear power.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  324. justin burris

    no, we sholuld not use nothing that explodes or causes damage to human lifes. why cant we just use wind energy? or solar with battery backup. gas is dangerous as well. we have see craters blown into the ground because of gas. we need alternitives.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  325. Fran Ladoux

    No because of its risk and the waste disposal is also putting the world at risk.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  326. Heidi Halsworth

    Nuclear power is only safe as long as nothing ever goes wrong, and when have we known technology to be infallible? But it is the transport of our used nuclear materials in America we should be really concerned about. It is shipped by train. There are 200-300 train derailments in America every year. CNN even reported on a train derailment in Ohio filled with toxic chemicals that broke out into massive fires in February. The Yucca Mountain Nuclear Repository in Nevada is a deep, dark hole where we send our used nuclear waste. I worry that we could see a nuclear disaster anywhere near train tracks while shipping this stuff because even the used fuel rods are still dangerous, hence dumping them in the repository. Also, private companies are in charge of these reactors, and their interests are not in the public good, but their profit margins. We've known that the reactors like those at the Daiichi plant haven't been safe since 1972. That's almost 40 years that they've known they've been unsafe, but the companies have been more concerned with reaping as much profit from their investment, not what is going to happen to all the people living around their plants. Businesses don't have to care about people unless our legislators institute regulations to keep them in line for the general population, and Republicans nowadays use "regulation" like a four letter word.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
  327. Steve

    The possibility of mass contamination of the food chain with radioactive elements seems to me to be a proof enough that the risks of nuclear power out weigh the benefits by a huge margin! I'm sure the conversations that occurred before the Fukushima plants were build included such language as "we can build it to withstand any natural disaster in the area." Now officials are saying, they can learn from this and make future plants safe. It brings to mind Bullwinkle Moose trying to pull a rabbit out of his hat..."This time for sure!"

    March 17, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  328. Anna

    No! We have proven over and over again that nuclear power has serious consequences on human life and the environment. If these disasters are happening in the most scientifically advanced, richest countries in the world I can't imagine what would happen if less developed countries start building reactors.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  329. Dan

    Nuclear power is a great source of power. There are 2 nuclear power plants,. 25 miles and 50 miles of where I live in Toronto. The Daiichi power plant suffered damaged because the Tsunami damaged the coolant pumps. What are the chances of Toronto getting hit by a Tsunami? I would think that those reactors along the Eastern and Western coast should learn from what happened in Japan and take steps to re-engineer the components that are vital to the nuclear power system such as the coolant pumps and take steps to protect those components so that in the event of a Tsunami on the coast of California or the Eastern seaboard, those components are not affected. There is no need to panic and do away with nuclear power. It is clean energy.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  330. Rashan Saddler

    Nuclear power is simply our highest outputting method of generating electricity. Until there's a viable option to replace it, I don't believe we should stop using it.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  331. Deirdre O'Neill

    No NUCLEAR PLANTS EVER. Have we not learnt from our history and especially Japan that we cant risk our people

    How does Las Vegas get its power, the Hoover Dam.....that is .another way to go.

    Please, Americans and all citizens of the world, do not use nuclear. We wont, as a species, survive the nuclear power plants!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
  332. Robert Breslin

    No NUKES! Mining of uranium and the disposal of mining waste releases radioactive materials. Transportation of uranium is dangerous. Operating nuke facilities requires the release of radioactive materials from time to time. Disposal of radioactive waste from transporting to disposing is dangerous and almost impossible. The cost of constructing reactors is very expensive and keeps energy in the hands of a few who profit from it. Those large investments should be put into alternative non-polluting technologies that will spread cost savings to many. And, has anyone mentioned conservation. Turn down the thermostat!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  333. Elie Jackson Jr.

    Yes I do think that we should continue our quest to reform to nuclear power. I also think that we should continue to analyze and learn from all the incindets that have occured in the past to insure that we have done everything to mitigate possible damage that would occur.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  334. brad hubbell

    the need for electricity doesnt exceed the value of human life. we have all sorts of deserted areas called deserts where we could use solar and thermal power. with only the radiation from the sun. safe clean and reliable.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  335. George Smith

    Ali, we have no alternative, we have to move forward with Nuclear power. We just need to be very aware of where we place the sites. There should be no live zones, we have thousands of square miles of open land here in America. We need to be smarter in our design and placement of Nuclear Plants. This is an urgent project.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  336. Catherine

    YES, nuclear power is part of the energy future. Will global warming go away? Will our dependence on foreign oil be quenched when there is no more oil?
    When all is settled, we'll go away with 20000 Japanese people killed in the earthquake/tsunami , and maybe 50 heroes workers killed from radiation. The industry will learn from Fukushima, even engineering is human. But I hope all the big com' brass will step-up better the next time to simply explain what's going on. I understand the media need "fear", and so do "the financial markets", but the real middle class American deserves much much better from its officials on these issues, learning from Japan!.....

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  337. Evan Kelley

    What really is disturbing if you ask me, is folks who support nuclear/petroleum/coal/natural gas & other toxic nonrenewable energy sources that don't even benefit monetarily from it! I can sort-...of understand the CEO's view... after raking in a few billion $ from PRIVATIZED resources, there is not much to get in there way of getting out of Dodge in the case of an "accident" while EVERYBODY else suffers the consequences. Is this the American Dream? Should we really embrace & support these industries when they know the alternatives & the dire consequences as well as we do? Is it not criminal? Or even Eco-terrorism at this point? Let's grow up & really look after each other for our children, & if you don't have children then out of -> Geax!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  338. John Melendez

    Nuclear energy should not be used. How many accidents do we have to have before we get the message. It's obvious to me that it is too dangerous. Why isn't it obvious to the so called "EXPERTS".

    Meltdowns that have occurred

    • A number of Soviet Navy nuclear submarines experienced nuclear meltdowns, including K-27, K-140, and K-431.

    • There was also a fatal core meltdown at SL-1, an experimental U.S. military reactor in Idaho.

    The only large-scale nuclear meltdowns at civilian nuclear power plants

    • the Lucens reactor, Switzerland, in 1969.

    • the Three Mile Island accident in Pennsylvania, U.S.A., in 1979.

    • the Chernobyl disaster at Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, Ukraine, USSR, in 1986.

    • the Fukushima I nuclear accidents at Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, Japan, in 2011 (Extent of damage uncertain as of March 16, 2011.)

    Other core meltdowns have occurred at:

    • NRX (military), Ontario, Canada, in 1952

    • BORAX-I (experimental), Idaho, U.S.A., in 1954

    • EBR-I (military), Idaho, U.S.A., in 1955

    • Windscale (military), Sellafield, England, in 1957 (see Windscale fire)

    • Sodium Reactor Experiment, Santa Susana Field Laboratory, Simi Valley, California, U.S.A., in 1959

    • Fermi 1 (civil), Michigan, U.S.A., in 1966

    • A1 plant at Jaslovské Bohunice, Czechoslovakia, in 1977


    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  339. Torrey Smith

    Since the 1950s we have had nuclear power generators. And we still do not have a place to store the waste or safely neutralize it. After 60 years I think it time to shut them down and come up with a better IDEA. Something that won't contaminate us or our children.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  340. Chase

    As 3 other people have brought up – Talk about CANDU reactors. Much safer; and don't require enriched uranium.

    I would be completely comfortable with a CANDU Reactor in every city – in my backyard, I don't care. What happens if you lose coolant in a CANDU reactor? You lose your moderator too... so everything just stops. No Chernobyl, no Three Mile Island.

    I truly don't understand why this isn't being brought up on Television. Look to your neighbors from the north, America.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  341. Ygael Tresser

    Nuclear energy should not be used, because we do not have the technology to neutralize radiation and our best option for discarding spend fuel rods is burying them under ground or in the case of Europe sale them to what ever country will accept to store them, a risk for terrorism. There is no reactor that is 100% safe because human errors and accidents will happen given enough time.
    Also seismic activity is impossible to predict, the reactors we have in California are built to resist a 8.0 earthquake, what happens when the 9.0 earthquakes hits?

    March 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
  342. Tom

    Current nuclear reactor designs are very safe and have NO carbon footprint and should continue to be built. The tragedy in Japan is a warning though that plants should either not be built near fault lines or way overdesigned to preclude a worst case scenario. Older nuclear plants should be surveyed for safe operation and either updated or retired from service.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
  343. S & K Wilkinson

    NO! It is not worth the risk!! We should be using Wind and Solar Power..

    March 17, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
  344. Jim Jablonski

    That question was answered a long time ago when we built them. YES!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
  345. Linda

    No, even without catastrophic explosions, the spent nuclear rods are hazardous for far too long. We are worried about our children inheriting financial problems; we should be more worried about our children inheriting hazardous nuclear waste.
    How many aid workers will decline going to help because of this nuclear danger to their own health?

    March 17, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
  346. Peter Lokke

    It would be great if we could just stop the use of all nuclear power. However if we did then what would we do for electricity. The other three primary ways we generate electricity are not safe either. Coal is dirty and kills coal workers all the time, oil can cause major ecological disasters like in the Gulf, Some natural gas extraction methods contaminate ground water. there are only a few truly safe ways to generate electricity and at the current time only provide less then 1 % of our electricity.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
  347. Renee

    There's a difference between nuclear fission and fusion. Fission, which we're using produces a lot of waste and it's dangerous. Fusion is much cleaner; the main stumbling block to using it is that scientists are still working on controlling the reaction in a contained space. Take all that money we're wasting on useless wars, tax cuts for the rich, etc. and give scientists what they need to solve the problem. We'd have a new, cleaner energy source without all these concerns. That's the way to move forward!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
  348. Torrey Smith

    Using the same figures the U.S. Government just suggested for Americans in Japan. San Onofre would take out from Palos Verdes to Long beach to Pamona to Riverside to Carona to San Diego. If it were a plant in Portland from Veronia to Cascade Locks to Salem to Sheridan to the mountains east of Tilimook. How many of your friends and family would be effected. Any other reasons not to build any more.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
  349. Erich

    Ok, 1st off while nuclear power may be clean however, it has a very negative backlash when containment is breached due to any reason. America needs to open its 3rd eye. Why not take the monies for nuclear energy & invest in alternative energy solutions (solar, wind, CNG, LNG, Wave tech) and start the shut down process of nuclear power plants. Another option, which may be a little costly, but I feel is better in the long run, desalination plants that turn ocean water into clean, potable water. The US Navy does this with their ships when they are underway... just a thought.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  350. Evan Kelley

    People may also note how insensitive & passive aggressive one could be in shrugging off Solar /Wind/Hydro/Bio, while so may people are being evacuated due to radiation poisoning. Easy to toss around when you don't have a crisis in your back yard.
    Fear mongering propaganda that these types of energy sources are impossible to facilitate into "the grid", while creating fear & anxiety using the current privatized resources during "accidents", is stupid.
    We are America, the land of opportunity & transition is the word.
    Btw, there is no such thing as clean coal, go mining; & natural gas stinks while being poisonous and explosive.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  351. John Throckmorton

    The massive amount of energy we need cannot never be produced by wind or solar. Coal is environmentally destructive. Only so much gas is available. Nuclear can be accomplished safely even with the awful type disaster which happened to Fukishima. Some additional things need to be done to requre utilities to provide alternate casualty protections for situations beyond those for which they are designed. They have devoloped procedures to handle meltdowns safely but they haven't been made to get equipment in case of a very long term loss of Electricity since this is believed to only be possible due to something like war. There are some relatively cheap and simple protections which should be required to cover these type events. Continued reliance on our old plants designed in the 1950's and 1960's needs to be phased out with agressive construction of the new safer designs of the 21st century. Nuclear is the least expensive solution.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  352. KT

    NO NO NO! It's both dangerous and EXPENSIVE. "Cheap" nuclear energy doesn't include the cost of storing deadly materials for many thousands of years (longer than any civilization has remained in existence), and DOES NOT include insuring the many thousands of people for damages they might incur in case of an accident. Insurance isn't required or possible. ALSO, go check the numbers of times "excursions" above the stated limits happen for reactors. (I have, as part of a required student project.) Excursions are allowed for "necessity" and those releases into the environment in the US happen all the time. NO on nuclear energy. Even my professor in Nuclear Engineering was against it.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  353. Dawn Baggett

    Never cared for the idea of using nuclear power. Its been in use for decades yet we still have no truly sound methods for dealing with nuclear accidents nor the waste produced.

    A better solution: As a nation we should be committed to using LESS power. We sent men to the moon. We can spy on terrorists from unmanned drones. We can use technology to track our children with GPS or purchase a coffee using our Iphone.

    Surely, we can come up with solutions to reduce our need for power. Our government should develop appropriate programs to require auto makers, large businesses, and even citizens to reduce our use of energy. And not in 10 years.....right now.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
  354. maureen sullivan


    It has been my view for a long time that the use of nuclear energy is unacceptably risky. The disposal of spent fuel rods has yet to be solved; storing them is truly problematical. The "what ifs" are just too much of a gamble. Earthquakes or terrorists, the ever-increasing numbers of spent rods and their storage is an enormous catastrophe waiting to happen.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
  355. Sher

    The issue isn't whether or not nuclear plants are safe or even the power they produce, it's the spent fuel rods. We're looking at a waste product that remains DEADLY of THOUSANDS of YEARS! HELLO!!! And after more than 50 years no one has yet come up with a truly safe way to dispose of this potential horror story. How can building more nuclear power plants even be considered before this problem is solved?!?!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
  356. Cameron Corrado

    With the current problems & the presence of nuclear weaponry as a result, it should be without debate that nuclear energy should no longer be used. We of the world have the ability, money, innovation, & technology to create clean & renewable energy, but we rely on nuclear energy as a pacifier. Also, the people making money through nuclear energy are too selfish to encourage the change; halting all growth into energy that does not kill us for their own wallets.

    When a toy released to children can cause illness or death, we recall the toy & remove/ban the cause of the problem. We then find a new way to present the same toy without the dangers. If nuclear energy can cause illness or death, it should be removed/banned. We can then focus on a newer source of energy that does not cause death or illness to replace nuclear energy.

    In fact, if the world works together, this issue can be solved more quickly, more effectively, & be less costly. We are one world & we need to start working together. Earthquakes, tsunamis, & other disasters will happen again. Will we have learned by then? I hope so.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
  357. Wayne Zillweger

    This is a no brainer. Look at 3 mile island, we had no lasting effect's from that site, yes there will be problems but we are learning how to deal with these problems. Look how many nuclear sites we have in the world that are operating 24/7 safely. This is the only way to go. Nuclear power is here to stay.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  358. Dwayne Olson

    I support nuclear energy as it is "normally" less polluting than anything else. Coal releases more radiation than a "normal" nuclear plant.
    However, this is not a normal time. One question that I have always had is why they can not build a plant in the middle of a large depression? Build the plant, then flood the entire area (not using a dam that can collapse). Use the lake for recreation, not normal cooling. However, in the event of a problem, they could manually turn a valve. If there was an electric problem they just flood the reactor. Also on top of the reactor containment building they could have a storage area of boron, again with a manual release.
    Seems to me that would be a good way of solving any future problem like what is now going on.

    I would appreciate an answer in writing if you find out the answer. I might miss your show. Thank you

    March 17, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  359. Steve Redeker

    Definitely expand nuclear: YES!! Nuclear plants do not contribute to global warming.

    World energy consumption is growing rapidly as developing nations expand. Global warming is the overwhelming concern: We are risking the entire planet by expanding fossil fuel burning. Wind and solar should be expanded repidly also, but alone they can not supply the worlds needs. Nuclear is the only currently available large source of non-greenhouse gas emitting energy.

    The newest designs are engineered to cope with accidents without needing electrical power. Loss of power is the reason the Japanese plants are in trouble.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  360. LRiley

    Yes, even coal, wood and burning cow dung are dangerous. Nuclear power is similar in the need to control/use them.

    You hear about people dying from carbon monoxide, but it doesn't make world wide news. You hear about mine explosions killing people, but the news media does not suggest that we should quit using wood or coal.

    I suspect wood & coal & cow dung would cause cancer under certain conditions, but that never makes the news.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  361. Michelle

    NO NO NO!!! There are many many other sources of energy that are far more ecologically friendly and less dangerous to human kind. I honestly do not understand how anyone could feel that nuclear power is the most effective power source available. If all of the money that is budgeted to nuclear power research (from the U.S. alone $36 billion for one year) were spent exploring other power technologies, such as solar, wind, hemp oil, etc. we would be able to sustain ourselves in much much more safe and environmentally friendly ways. Maybe the government will decide to explore these other options once our planet is beyond help, because clearly a massive oil spill in the gulf and a possible nuclear disaster aren't enough to do it... Stand up and let the Obama administration know that we don't want our tax dollars going to more nuclear power research!!!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
  362. Joey

    We should use nuclear power as a source of energy because it's the cleanest form of energy. It's very unfortunate what's happening in Japan and we should learn from it. All we have to do is remember the beginnings of airline commercial planes and the unfortunate disasters that occured. With all the different accidents that happened something was learned and to fly now a days is very safe.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
  363. Michael

    Go to the beach and look around. Everything we need is there. Wave motion, wind, and sun. We went to the moon in the 60's. Surely with effort we can figure this out without risk and creating toxic waste. It's 2011. 2011!!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
  364. Terry Whiteman

    Yes, Nuclear Power should be used. Continued research and innovation minimizes risks. Part of the problem as I see it, is the tendency of yokels up at the top to bury "inconvenient" facts and problems. The politicians of this country, thirty years back at least, should have been pursuing various means of power-wind, water, even nuclear. But instead our way of life and our safety are in jeopardy. We are dependent upon middle east oil. Instead of throwing away American taxpayers' money, the subsidizing of multiple countries (some hostile to us) needs to end. That money should stay in this country and work for Americans. The research and implementation of alternate power would be funded. Give me a break!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:29 pm |
  365. David Neil


    In order to continue using as much electrical power as we have been without addng to the detrimental climate change, we must use nuclear energy. Of course we need to expand the renewal energy sources also.

    The U. S. nuclear plants are extremely safe. They are not where a flood will knock out the cooling system. We can learn from Japan to make our plants even more safe, and there will be no problem.

    David Neil

    March 17, 2011 at 1:29 pm |
  366. harold grossnickle

    No! Let's modernize existing plants so that they are safer during the rest of their useful life. But the incidents in Japan demonstrate clearly the need for solar, wind, and ocean current power generation systems to serve the world. Such systems would be fully safe, with a systems usefullness as long as we have sunshine and wind. And a catastrophic natural event would not trigger a secondary event like we now fear emanating out of Japan. World governments must help to fund development and construction, along with industry, all fully aware that only safe systems should be added to power grids for the future. And coal, oil or any other carbon based fuel used to fire existing systems must be quickly phased out to save our environment!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  367. Farrokh Vavoom

    After watching your news segment I checked the solar panel array we got from Peterson Dean here in California, and it is developing over 1720 watts as I am writing this. The system did not cost me anything and is putting power directly on the energy grid here in my neighborhood. Global Solar is the answer. It's not a matter of if, but when. Safe, clean, Perfect!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  368. B. A. O'Neal

    Don't forget the 37-liter (9 gallon) spill of High-Enriched Uranium and two near criticalities at the Nuclear Fuel Services, Inc. plant in Erwin, TN on March 6, 2006.

    This accident was covered up from the public for 13 months until it was reported to Congress by the NRC on April 27, 2007 in their Annual Report. (New York Times article, July 6, 2007, "Secrecy at Nuclear Agency is Criticized by Lawmakers.")

    According to Scientific American, July 25, 2007, "Nuclear Mishap or Meltdown?" It's All a Matter of Degree," Commissioner Gregory Jaczko said the spill rated as a Level 2 on the INES (International Nuclear Event Scale). Level 2: Significant spread of contamination overexposure of a worker and incidents with significant failures in safety provisions.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  369. Deborah Bardeau

    I definitely do not want to see nuclear power being used. Even though we have not seen many accidents The risk to humans and the environment is just to great a risk. With the geology of our planet changing rapidly and so many earthquakes happening in the world, are our officials really taking the risks into factor over the financial aspect of it are our officials that ignorant that they can' see this.. With so many new technologies being worked on like wave and wind and solar energy our government should be looking more seriously into these types of power so that we can leave a clean and safe planet for our future children. Stop living just in the present and start looking to our future for us and our planet.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  370. Daniel Holloway

    We should safely capitalize on the immense energy nuclear power creates. They should be located in areas that have little risk of natural disaster. There are ideal areas in the Middle East such as central Saudi Arabia that would be a welcome transition away from exporting energy in the form of oil.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
  371. Heather

    Nuclear power is the only sufficient source of and reliable clean electricity. Coal power plants produce huge amounts of radioactive elements released when coal is burned and also contribute to global warming from all the co2 emitted from the stacks. Nuclear power is our only source of clean reliable power in the quantity we need to run our country. We need only to insure that the plants are built in a safe location and bilt to the highest safety standards.

    Alameda, CA

    March 17, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
  372. KT

    March 17th, 2011 1:25 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    No! It's both dangerous and expensive. "Cheap" nuclear energy doesn't include the cost of storing deadly materials for many thousands of years (longer than any civilization has remained in existence), and does not include insuring the many thousands of people for damages they might incur in case of an accident. Insurance isn't required or possible. Also, go check the numbers of times "excursions" above the stated limits happen for reactors. (I have, as part of a required student project.) Excursions are allowed for "necessity" and those releases into the environment in the US happen all the time. No on nuclear energy. Even my professor in Nuclear Engineering was against it.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
  373. Mike Kiech

    It is, as always, a matter of cost between alternatives. Power and Energy are basic needs for us, but inherently dangerous for different reasons. I prefer hydro, even over the cost of aquatic changes, which I see as minimal (in a relative sense). Any petrol resource should be saved rather than consumed if an economically competitive and technologically proven renewable resource is known or found.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
  374. Bob Maske

    Petroleum is a diminishing resource whose use provides immediate environmental impact through CO2, NOX, and many carcinogens in emissions when used.
    Nuclear if intelligently used is a renewable resource that can be sustained for many years and provides the energy density necessary to maintain and grow our civilization. Issues are driven by save a buck manufacturers and cost driven by over regulation.
    Don't build in populated areas. Do ensure the environment will support safe operation, do design to proof qualities (3X expected event stresses), do expect multiple failure events, do have worse case plans in place, do ensure the public knows what these plans are.
    No source of energy is without costs, tradeoffs and risks. Even solar energy – energy density cannot meet needs without impacting soil, vegetation and animal life which loses sunlight.
    Until the holy grail of cheap and efficient fusion energy is available (it is always 20 years away), Uranium/Plutonium based atomic energy is the best long term solution. I has the added benefit of reducing use and extending the availability of petroleum.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
  375. Deirdre O'Neill

    The only way we can go after 3 major nuclear disasters and all the toxicity that may affect our great, great, grandchildren, is SOLAR and WIND.
    Obviously there is not too much profit for the Capitol Hill lobbyists in this type of energy – but this is the best, safest, can be personally controlled in our back yards and maintained by us. America is supposed to be the country who elects officials to do what we want not the lobbyists.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
  376. Bob Neal

    YES! Looking at fatalities/unit of energy produced nuclear energy is far safer than coal or hydro. Coal plants pollute killing hundreds each year and contribute CO2. Dams fail & kill scores downstream. Wind and solar are promising, but currently there's no efficient way to store the energy for calm periods or at night. While nuclear has its problems, fear of radiation is the largest. Thousands of Japanese killed in a tsunami and not yet one fatality from radiation, but people are focused on the reactors.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:35 pm |
  377. brad hubbell

    no nukes. the people have beared the brunt of these facilities shortcummings for far too long. the power that comes from these plants that ruin the earth around them is not worth it. there are so many radiation related diseases. and only 2 out comes from fission. destruction or electricity.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:35 pm |
  378. Lyn Mardis

    It is easy to express an instant opinion based on the news on the various broadcasts. I have opposed nuclear power plants based on the short life of the plant in relation to the disposal of the nuclear refuse; i.e., spent fuel rods, water, and all the other things contaminated by exposure to the nuclear fuel. There is no energy source without its drawbacks. The various energy industries seem to feel that their industry is the safest; however, each has a vested interest in convincing the public to support them. I pray that our country's leaders make the best decision for our energy policy. Thanks.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:35 pm |
  379. Sam M.

    We should NOT continue to use nuclear power plants to generate energy. Has everyone forgotten that we still have no safe method to store and dispose of spent nuclear material or other radioactive materials? What new catastrope needs to occur before we realize that contingencies for every possible problem can NOT be planned for. It is simply not possible to plan for ALL possible problems. History has proven that even the so-called experts have not been able to accomplish this.
    Let's take the billions of dollars used to run and build nuclear power plants, and spend it on environmentally safe power generation facilities.
    I say that a ballot question be placed on the next major election, asking the U.S. population about their choice.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:36 pm |
  380. Gord Taylor

    Ali: If nuclear power was so safe the insurance industry would cover the losses encured. However, it is so unsafe, governments enacted legislation to limit insurance liability in the event of a catastrophic failure. Its called the "Nuclear liability Act" in Canada. The burden of liability then falls on the taxpayer. Nice eh?

    March 17, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
  381. E.A. Beck

    We've reached Mars searching with the rover, walked on the moon, developed the Aurora SR-75 that can reach speeds >5,000 mph at 8 mach reaching northeast Russia and back in under 3 hours, built a staffed space station, unmanned drones, smart missles and who knows what else with a 1.7 trillion black budget but we can't find a safe energy source for the world? I don't think so. There is not enough money in wind, solar and safer alternative energy sources and it is all about the money. We are playing roulette with nuclear power. The brightest minds on this planet know there are safer energy sources and could develop them and quickly if they were authorized to but it won't happen unless the populace wake up and demand it.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
  382. joan wells

    Absolutely not! If just part of that cost to install those nuclear plants was applied to wind, solar, or biothermal energy, we would be so far ahead of the energy crisis right now. But you can't put a meter on the sun and the wind, every one would want they're own unit.. There is no profit in it for big business...and then you have the cost of maintenance. No, big business wants the fastest money making machine they can get , regardless of the cost to our planet and the lives of the people that occupy it. How long are we going to let them bully us around and get they're way? Democracy? seems as though it applies to all but big business and government.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
  383. Chris

    Nuclear power should "NOT" be used as a source of energy! We've had other "warnings" from mother nature.......with that in Japan as the "ultimate" "many" warnings do we "NEED"!?!?!? ALL nuclear reactors worldwide should be dismantled as soon as possible. Reactors are going to be to us what the crystal was to Atlantis. They are going to turn this planet into a barren wasteland devoid of all life. The "powers that be" have been "talking" for years about developing cleaner and safer energy.......WHEN are they going to "DO" it?!?!?!? No, they'll spend billions sending crap up in outer space but can't take care of "this" planet or its starving people. AND........."ALL" offshore oil rigs also need to be dismantled as soon as possible and ONLY allowed on land far away from water......this way "accidents" will go into the ground where they are contained and NOT pollute the water or sealife........and they should try to find oil on already barren lands and not rape forests to find it/drill! Donald Trump said it best: "there are stupid people in this country run by stupid people".

    March 17, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
  384. Andrew Caras

    I believe we should scrap the nuclear type and pursue other, friendlier and safe energy. One great inventor who brought us AC power, hydroelectric power, was Tesla. Before he died, he was experimenting with wireless and free energies. When it was discovered it will be free energy, his work was destroyed and all was lost after he passed away. It is the greed of man and money which will destroy this world and all life on it. Why are we not continuing his work and take electricity from our ionosphere? This needs to be explored, and not allow energy corporations to keep this hidden. Nuclear power produces waste which we do not have the ability to dispose of the waste. Why not bring out the knowledge of Tesla for the future of humanity.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:38 pm |
  385. Mary B

    Definite yes for nuclear power. Nuclear has one of the best safety records in the U.S. and is one of the best sources of clean energy for our country. It provides non-intermittent power (unlike solar and wind) and provides up to 20% of our nation's energy portfolio. Without nuclear, there might not be an Ali show on CNN because there wouldn't be enough electricity to run a newsroom!

    March 17, 2011 at 1:39 pm |
  386. Ken

    There are a lot of irrational fears about nuclear power, it is not the "boogie" man. No system of any kind is completely safe. Here is some perspective. All over the world we operate a complex transportation network consisting of roads and vehicles. We provide the vehicle operators with safe operating training and the system has passive and active safety systems, but each and every year thousands of people are killed and many more injured and yet we don't stop driving or demand that the system be completely fail safe. It seems we only get truly worked up about something if there is a possibility that it may injure or kill a whole bunch of people all at once.

    I think that nuclear power is a reasonable part of our future energy picture. No energy alternatives are completely free of risks or environmental costs.


    March 17, 2011 at 1:43 pm |
  387. mark

    I was thirteen when the accident happened at t.m.i. my mom still lives 11 miles from the plant in harrisburg. The confusion of information and panic happening now really brings back scary memories. I don't know why it takes tragedy like this to make people question our stupid mistakes. Imagine if the energy and money it will cost to clean up the mess (just from the nuclear accident) were put into developing wind, solar and tidal energy....

    Not Far Away Enough From A Nuclear Plant
    Vancouver Bc

    March 17, 2011 at 1:44 pm |
  388. ghung

    No human civilization has lasted even a fraction of the time that nuclear waste from power plants must be managed. That this waste will remain lethal far longer than our ability to keep it safe and sequestered is a virtual certainty. We haven't even figured out where to safely store it yet. This is a criminal assualt on the future.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
  389. andrew

    we have so many other options than nuclear power, but greed and coruption prevent these systems from being fully funded.

    IE large canal hydropower generation.
    large public works projects are the key to overcoming current power needs. a nuke palnt takes 10 years to build. A large canal on a major river could be done in 4 years. the canal will flodd and drain with water levels.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
  390. Walter

    Please explain to the people the drifference between, BWR nukes and PWR nuclear Plant , and the type of fuel, recycled or new fuel.
    Japan use a lot of recycled fuel from France, the fuel we use in the USA is new fuel, I ask because this fuel is burning like paper
    PWR plants have real containment buildings with four feet wals with two inch rebar. get one of your exprexts to explain.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
  391. Felice Cohen-Joppa

    We definitely should not be building any new nuclear power plants, and we also need to shut down the ones already operating (most of them approaching their engineered lifespan and some on active earthquake faults). We still don't know what to do with the waste, they are not economically viable, and are subject to human error, natural disasters and acts of terrorism. It's time to wake up and put resources into development of a nuclear-and-carbon-free energy future. The earth and all life upon it deserves better. And certainly the aging survivors of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki deserve better than more radiation exposure in their remaining years – what a tragedy.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
  392. Vivienne Simon

    Every group of engineers who create a "new generation of reactors" has told us that the technology was safe. What they mean is, it's safe if nothing goes horribly wrong. We live on a planet that is now longer predictable. We see planetary changes everywhere, from melting ice caps, to larger earthquakes and tsunamis, to floods and droughts.

    Nuclear power will never be safe. There Earth is in dynamic flux and there is NO WAY that any scientist can predict what forces will be at play 5, 10, 20 or 40 years from now.

    The time and money that it would need to be spent to design, license, finance and build a new generation of plants AND to solve the problem of waste storage IF it can be solved, and then to end up with something that cannot possibly be built for evolving changes going on, is ludicrous.

    The state of technology and development of safe renewable clean energy is now at a level where it can compete financially with dirty energies, especially if we include that the securing of those energies includes wars and disasters.

    It takes maturity to know when it's time to let go, and it's time our national energy policy matured. We stand to gain both a safer world for ourselves and our children, a revived economy, and a chance to move our massive investment in war into creating genuine security that is sustainable.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
  393. Trish

    My husband worked in nine different nuclear power plants. I worked in two. Both of us were in Quality Control/Quality Assurance. New construction and Outages. Both of us adamantly backed this type of power, with frusteration over the lack of trust throughout the nation. TMI did have an incident, although it was handled properly. The newer design of reactor vessels should be safe. I have to be concerned about the government owned sites and the plants that are of an older design though. My concern now that this country has gone through huge natural disasters, like hurricane Katrina, is we as a nation assume it will never happen. I worry and I have seen it, the corruption and "My way or the Highway" attitude. The Nuclear industry does have safety and control programs, but there are still power players, contracts to meet, and huge penalties for lack of completion. (Perfect example is the BP Oil Spill) Nuclear Outages used to last three months, now they are down to a few weeks. As for the three stage back up safety systems in the Japan Reactors, the last would be the battery back-up system. Who would think that the piping systems or the diesel generators would be comprimised. Defaulting power to the reactors to the battery back-up systems, which did not work. Never in a million years. I am very worried. If it can happen in Japan, I feel it could happen here. Especially on the older sites and designs.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:51 pm |
  394. Kurt Halliday

    A world "green" energy program has been called for by the UN. It would be as big an innovation as any particular technology.

    A combined system of green energy technologies and related systems could be stable, effective, cheap and universal if it had at its core a hydrogen power plant in various configurations. The model plant could pump and refine sea water. It could provide regional irrigation as well as clean water and electricity. The model in question would make and burn hydrogen onsite. A variety of technologies is now available and under development to make this work.

    A world program would also make clearly unreal the claim by dangerous regimes to need nuclear power for energy purposes.

    – Kurt Halliday

    March 17, 2011 at 1:57 pm |
  395. Bruce W

    Ali, isn't geo-thermal a bit like nuclear? Where the hot water is within a mile of the surface, chances are that is because magma is close which likely means fault lines or thin crust on the earth at that spot. Drilling any hole in the earth to get to it means you are introducing a defect into the crust. In the case of an earthquake, that defect could widen, magma could replace the hot water, and even spout up the hole to release pressure underground.

    The engineers that push this stuff have a higher opinion of themselves than they do the rest of the world. The fact is that they do not know what would happen in such cases and they arbitrarily say "the likelihood of failure is low enough that the risk to human life is acceptable". In otherwords, they are playing God.

    There is risk in anything we do, but where the risk potentially affects thousands, hundreds of thousands, or millions of people, they need to find another solution.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  396. Elaine Carlson Dorland

    I was an active protestor way back in 1979 and marched down Pennsylvania Avenue toward the Capital. President Carter chose to leave ignoring our presence.
    Why can't we learn how to use our our resources like coal and wind? I guess one has to wait for a catastrophe before we learn, sadly....

    March 17, 2011 at 2:04 pm |
  397. sean I

    Are you kidding me...?? I can't believe all the people who ever thought nuclear power was a good idea...and now I am incredulous at all the people who still say it is safe, a good idea etc. after what we are seeing in Japan. We have SO MANY OTHER OPTIONS for clean power, it IS TIME to drop nuclear power like a hot...fuel rod. Correct me if i am wrong but it is my understanding that nuclear power plants NEVER pay for themselves. They are so expensive to build, run and deal with even AFTER they are decommissioned; yes they cost tax payers lots of money even after they are not making power anymore...and this is just the money issue, how about the health and environmental issues. We as Americans are living in denial if we think what is happening is Japan couldn't happen here; it can and probably will, I am sorry I don't believe the guy on tv who represents the NRC or the utility that wants to keep nuclear power in a positive light when they say "oh don't worry, we have all these safeguards, it couldn't possibly get out of our control". Well Japan had safeguards, and natural disasters ARE beyond our control. With all the options for power, geothermal, wind, solar etc, I say NO MORE NUCLEAR POWER and I will NOT vote for ANY politician who is in favor of it.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:05 pm |
  398. Bill G.

    I do believe that nuclear power will continue to be a part of the picture for generation of our electric power needs now and into the future. I grew up within 10 miles of Three Mile Island and was there when the accident happened. I see the same pattern of misinfomation going out to the public in Japan that we experienced in 1979. That was the most difficult part to swallow. I was very much against all nuclear energy for a long time because of the distrust in the accuracy of the information we were fed by the officials at Met/Ed, and our government. Now, 32 years later, I have had the time to figure out a bit how these plants work and realize that there is no replacement for the 32 % of our power needs that nuclear provides. There have also been many technical advances made in that time that will allow these plants to be safer than ever. We will learn much from this current accident that will advance our knowledge even more.Thanks for the space to vent my opinion.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:05 pm |
  399. Donovan Smith

    Yes we should use nuclear power. How many people have died in the past 40 years mining coal.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  400. Arnie

    Definitely YES.
    The current technology for nuclear power generation presents the most efficient and practical alternative to fossil fuel.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  401. Ray D.

    Of course we need nuclear power..Our fear of it is that the science is not understood by most people therefore the fear....

    March 17, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  402. Richard Harrold

    So much discussion about nuclear power is guided by emotion. Looking at what's happening in Japan fuels that emotion. But if we take a step back, we find that oil and coal exploration/production has been far more dangerous to both humans and the environment than nuclear energy has so far shown. Thousands of lives have been lost in both oil and gas exploration and production as well as in coal mining. Refinery explosions and environmental leaks have been far more frequent than nuclear accidents. Same for coal mining accidents. The data is there.

    There are dangers and risks with nuclear energy, but the damage to our planet going on right now because of fossil fuels is so much more insidious than what we've seen from the nuclear industry.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
  403. RLD

    Absolutely we should. If it takes a 9.0 magnitude earthquake AND a tsunami to cause a possible containment breach in a modern nuclear reactor, I'd say that's a pretty safe way to generate electricity overall. If only the oil wells in the Gulf of Mexico had been so well constructed.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
  404. Jeremy H

    Coal is a global problem. I understand nuclear power is the issue now but it has not been the problem for the last 25 years since the russian problem. I think it is interesting since this happened in Japan that there are more "Clean Coal" commersials on TV.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  405. Just Say No

    No. Because there is no safe level of radiation. (Even the sun causes cancer.)

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  406. Karl Olson

    The choice is simple: Burn coal and definitely poison the whole planets environment slowly, or use nuclear power and have a small chance of poisoning a small area (relatively speaking).

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  407. Garrett

    3 incidents in half a century is nothing compared to coal mine incidents, oil spills, dam-related floods, and natural gas leaks caused by other means of producing electricity. Newer, safer plants are the answer. More fossil fuels means more tragedies and greater energy scarcity.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  408. Harish Thakkar

    Yes. No doubt. Better to use as energy than the was weapon even after such fallout.

    Harish Thakkar

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  409. Albert

    I think that exploding atoms to get the full infra-red release is generally a bad idea..

    We should explore ways to use forces of nature to get energy..

    Probably the most abundant,continous non-stop source of natural energy is gravity or planetary magma heat.

    Scientists should work on ways of eploiting theses two forms of energy..

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  410. James

    Politicians need to LISTEN; the people don't want something so dangerous, costly, inefficient and polluting as nuclear power. We have the technology and can further develop the technology to take advantage of natural forms of energy that don't pollute and are abundant. People need to stand up and tell there representatives we have had enough living under the shadow of nuclear power....

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  411. Roberta Kramer

    Yes! We need to explore Thorium reactors and other ways to improve the safety of nuclear power and to make non-proliferable waste. We need to build new reactors, kick the oil habit and shut down plants that are too old to be run safely.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  412. Pam Olberg

    Nuclear energy can be very safe. Nuclear waste can be reprocessed into more nuclear fuel. The French do it. Or, use the spent fuel in fast neutron reactors to nearly eliminate it.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  413. Ken

    I think the real question is what happened, why did these plants fail and why wasn't the emergency handled better? I mean what have the utility company and government officials been doing for 6 and a half days that only now they are bringing in fire trucks to water down the reactor buildings and plans to reconnect electricity to the water pumps? The earlier attempts to dump water from those helecopters looked like a joke. There seems to have been a lot of incompetance in dealing with this emergency.


    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  414. Chase

    We should use nuclear power as a source of energy. My father worked at the nuclear plant about 15 mins from my house for about 20 years. It is a highly efficient source of energy that we can not afford to ignore. As long as the proper precautions are taken to try to avoid any type of disaster or meltdown, there should be no reason why we can't benefit greatly from its use.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  415. Faith

    Definitely not if they can't find a way to prevent such a disaster or have a way to dispose the radiation.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  416. Sam

    Safe nuclear power always has been and will MTL always be, an Oxymoron. Sort of like clean coal.
    We have the technology but not the will to develop safe production and delivery of energy.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  417. Jerry Schapker

    Yes, we need nuclear power, the new generation designs have passive safety systems which would have prevented this mishap and shutdown safely.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  418. ferd

    I have a question about nuclear power, How long does it take to shut down a nuclear reactor. Seems to me if it takes 7-10 years before the spent rods are cool enough to handle then the time it takes to secure the reactor is measured in years not days, My concern in this is even if you see say a hurricane like the one that wiped out New Orleans coming and you wated to secure the reactor in case of a power failure you cant. Or even if you knew an earthquake was imminent you cant shut it down and make it completely safe.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  419. Jason Clarke

    Nuclear power is a great way to produce energy – as long as we don't plan on putting anymore plants on the most active tectonic regions in the world, we should be fine. In addition to that, it is a very clean form of energy. The only pollution it causes is in the disposal process, and that doesn't have too big of an impact as long as it is disposed of properly.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  420. Mike

    Yes. What has happened to Japan's Daichi reactors is the exception, not the rule. 99% of nuclear plants around the world have been operating for decades without problems and continue to put electricity onto the grid using cleaner production methods than coal-burning plants. Driving a car is more harmful to the environment than a stable nuclear facility, despite the alarmist sound-bytes popping up since the tragedy in Japan.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  421. Jim Grina

    Although nuclear energy is a "green" method, nuclear waste is far more dangerous than global warming. In the short run, nuclear can reduce the amount of CO2, but the waste products last for thousands of years. The reason that spent fuel rods are stored onsite, is that no one can figure out where else to put them. Obviously, reactor 4 has shown the hazard of onsite storage.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  422. John from Alabama

    Ali: Nuclear power is very risky way to produce electric power. Believe it or not coal fired electricity can be used and not pollute our environment. Nuclear power production has to many varibles that man and electric companies can not control. Radiation poisoning is a terrible death and silent killer. I would rather improve an old method of producing electricity with coal than glow in the dark.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  423. Scott

    Nuclear power is not the answer. There is no net energy gain. It takes enormous energy to mine & extract the ore. Then it has to be enriched, another energy intensive process. Then you have to clean up the toxic uranium tailings in the mining process. Then you have to build the atomic plants & transport the enriched ore to the plant. Then you have to decommission the old reactors. Then you have to figure out what to do with the spent fuel, some of which is deadly for hundreds of thousands of years or more.

    Let us not forget that the Price-Anderson Act legislatively limits the nuclear industries legal liability to $10.2 billion in the case of a disaster.

    Let us also not forget that many of these reactors on on seismically active areas. I live near Indian Point, 8- 10% of the country's population is within 50 miles. The 911 terrorists flew right by it.

    Let us also not forget that the siren warning systems have done poorly on repeated tests.

    Moreover, the evacuation routes are incapable of handling normal rush hour traffic, what happens in a crisis – how do you get away?

    We have a natural fusion reactor 93 million miles away, the sun. It will last for a long, long time. Let us subsidize this industry and use solar for all it is worth. Why do alternatives have to be self-supportive? Oil, coal, natural gas, nuclear are all heavily subsided by taxpayers. Solar is the way; no doubt the big energy companies will find a way to make money distributing this too.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  424. colbi

    I don't think Nuclear power should be used. We seem to always talk about the Human safety but what about the environment and other wildlife, livestock, fish, etc? The effects that this catastrophe leaves behind, let alone the waste that we cant seem to dispose of safely is just too great a detriment to the earth and all of its inhabitants. We need to find a sustainable energy source that everyone can use and afford.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  425. Greg

    I think nuclear power is a great source of power. But when you put a nuclear plant in the "Ring of Fire" how stupid are we?? Put a fragile source of power in a zone that has frequent and violent earthquakes is foolish and irresponsible. Take a look at the proposed nuclear plants in the US, they are mainly East of the Mississippi River, away from earthquake prone areas.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  426. dee

    What we are seeing is issues with reactors and designed that are 40 years old. I would think we have learned a great deal since then. We must be open to all options of alternative fuel including nuclear energy.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  427. rick

    NO! No more nuclear plants. Put the billions it would cost to expand nuclear, into research and development of renewable energy.
    In the interim, get busy tapping into the vast natural gas this country.
    Use our own resources, NOT those from the middle east.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  428. Paul R

    I think nuclear power should be further researched. Currently nuclear power plants use large quantities of radioactive material to generate heat, which is then turned into electricity. This is a modern equivalent of the steam engine. Scientist need to find a way to convert the energy released from a nuclear reaction directly into electricity. That would be like going from external combustion engines to internal ones. Such an advance would make the process more efficient, reducing the size of the power plant needed, and safer to deal with when they break down.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  429. Frank

    Absolutely YES! What happened is because of a natural disaster! Should we stop flying and building planes because there is an aviation accident? Should we stop driving because there is an ice storm that causes vehicle accident? Why dont we take this as a lesson to expand and develop safer nuclear energy policy and continue to develop nuclear power in order to reduce our dependency on oil.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  430. Jon Osterman

    Of course nuclear power should still be used as a source of energy. Consider the hundreds of plants in our country alone and how many accidents there have been. Nuclear power remains a safer form of energy than oil or coal. What we should also do is research newer forms of energy, like solar or fuel cells, not fall back to archaic technologies which damage our planet.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  431. Troy Adkins

    The nuclear power industry should be shut down in the U.S. due to the fact that there is not a solution for managing the used nuclear waste. As a safe alternative, the U.S. energy needs can be fully met by windfarms established in the Midwest. In addition, the revenue provided to farms that lease their land for wind production can use the proceeds to offset the significant business risks associated with producing food, which is a high volume, low margin endeavor.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  432. Ric

    The type of nuclear fission power we have today may still be needed for reliable baseload power for a while. But there is a better type of nuclear power being worked on which is fusion. If the plant in Japan was a fusion plant, the only issue would have been a repair bill. It makes sense to accelerate fusion development, since that would end the world's energy concerns forever. But in the mean time, more than a decade ago, I have seen a demo nulcear fission plant that can suffer a complete coolant loss without melting down. It is a pellet reactor where the uranium fuel is encased inside silicon balls. Why aren't new power plants using this design?

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  433. Travis

    No! What will it take for humanity to wake up to the fact that nuclear power is a dangerous threat to life on earth? Not only is there the danger of meltdowns like we're seeing in Japan but there is no way to safely dispose of nuclear waste. We are poisoning the earth with nuclear waste! We would be better off to do with less electricity than resort to nuclear to meet our glutinous demand.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  434. Frank

    No! It's not nice to mess with mother nature. Nuclear waste is unsafe. We need to implement more safe and natural solutions such as wind, wave, geothermal, and solar.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  435. Andrew

    The issue at hand isn't just nuclear power waste being dangerous, coal slag lakes are just as if not even more dangerous. Remember the recent lake levy burst that spilled its contents into a town, rivers, and streams. This released LOADS of arsenic and other heavy metals and toxins. Japan was prepared for this, but it was a perfect storm, they were able to take Xft high tsunami, but got one that was bigger.

    Short of putting everything in a bubble that is impervious... there will always be a danger.

    People need to realize,the plant survived the quake. It was the tsunami that did it in. Power of water is vast and very underestimated.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  436. Trudy Schaefer

    Nuclear Energy should definitely be a component in our energy production. Basically don't put Plants along major fault lines. The most vulnerable are in the US is the West Coast which is long over due for a major quake. Put Nuclear Plants in geologically stable areas of the country and we should be fine.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  437. Bob

    Until solutions to waste and proliferation are secured no new reactors should be built. Securing the existing stock pile of nuclear materials has to be a global priority.
    Investment in alternative, actually clean renewables, conservation, efficiency and a modern intelligent grid are hands down better investments. l

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  438. Chris A, New Jersey

    Ali, as you know, there must be diversification. This applies to not only finances but all aspects of life. We have been to reliant on oil and must find other energy sources. Lets spend money to improve safety measures at nucluear facilities. Dont forget BP and the Gulf of Mexico last year.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  439. Faith Bammer

    Nuclear energy is and always will be a bad is dangerous and as we are witnessing on a daily bases, we don't have a clue!! Prime example of trusting the corporate world....

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  440. Rosie LoBrutto

    Of course. How will we ever break our dependence on oil if we give up nuclear energy. Lets learn from this and move ahead with the technology.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  441. peggy strand

    somethings are to big for us humans..and this is.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  442. Chris Bray

    I don't design nuclear plants. I think nuclear power is safe, but it seems to me these plants all have design flaws. Why on earth would you not build something like the fuel rod storage into the the ground, rather than above it? It seeems in Japan they can't cool the rods because the container is a "broken teacup" above ground. If the container had been built int the ground, not only would it have better withstood an explosion, but you would have the ground as a natural teacup. Seems to me we shortcut in the design of the facilites to save money and for convenience, without enough thought for worst-case scenarios. We need to build these plants to withstand war, tornadoes, earthquakes etc, with back-up failsafes. We don't seem to be doing that. We build things "on-the-cheap" to make money in the short run. As long as companies are allowed to do this, then nuclear power is not safe. All governments have formulas for an acceptable tolerance of deaths an exposure from nuclear accidents like this. They have prediction formulas for long-term effects. This is gambling with our lives at a cost-trade-off, rather than making the facilites safer.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  443. cecilia troiani

    There are plus and negative comments on both sides – but it comes down to one question – would we be willing to have one in our own back yard. Nothing can be fail safe no matter what is said.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  444. james burke

    Yes we should continue using nucular power. enviroment people dont want us to use coal , the same people dont want us to drill for oil because of what happend in the gulf, now we are supposed to stop using nucular power because of japan, unless the aliens come and show us a better way we are just about out of affordable power options

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  445. Doug D.

    Yes, new Nuclear power is much safer. Pebble bed reactors do not have the safety problems like the reactors currently gaining attention in Japan.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  446. Karen Gilson Alberta Canada

    I have never felt that nuclear power was a viable energy source...there has never been a safe method of disposal of the radioactive waste..
    this crisis in Japan only confirms the dangers involved....there is also a shortage of fresh water in the world and every time we divert water to this type of energy we stand the chance of long term contamination....The long term effects on our environment should be considered....I also do not believe bio-fuels are the answer either as we do not have the right to starve the world to support our lifestyle....I think if we spent the dollars on solar and wind power we could make great advances into supporting our world in a way that does the least amount of harm....

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  447. Dorothy E

    Oh my, in light of what is happening right now. And the past previous disasters with nuclear power. I would have to say a loud no. It needs to be made a whole lot safer.
    Not meaning to minimize at all the disaster in Japan but with their countries history of earthquakes and tsunami's was the place they chose the best possible place they could have put it? I think that is one lesson that definitely needs to be applied to any country building up new nuclear plants.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |

    solar power, wind power, and is there not a safety difference between nuclear fusion vs nuclear fission??

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  449. Jason

    Nuclear power is still needed as a source of energy but the big lesson we should have learned from this is that there are no safe proof plans to control nuclear power! So rather then advance in nuclear power, our main focus should be the advances of more environmental and safe power generating sources like using solar, wind and hydro. In the end no matter how safe we make nuclear power, were still playing with fire here and there is always a chance that we get burned again. What do we do then?

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  450. michelle eggert

    i dont think that is very smart to do for we dont know how to use it right their are better ways to get energy that wont hurt the earth but use what the earth gives to us. our 4 fathers didnt need all this stuff to live their daily lives unlike now when people depend on it all. i think we should stop looking at this nuclear powering for its just going to cause more problems then its going to help. what if we get something like japan to happen here you can never be 100% on what nature is going to do so your never 100% safe.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  451. Alex

    Of course we can still use ithe nuclear power, there is no reason to be scared of. Japan's nuclear problem was not caused by the reactor itself, neither human error. It is the result of an external cause. It could have been anticipated, however, there is no way to anticipate an earthquake of that magnitude.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  452. Michael Blair

    Nuclear power is undoubtedly necessary in the United Sates. When a chemically fueled plant produces energy there WILL be harmful substances released into the atmosphere. Nuclear energy releases no radiation or harmful chemicals into the environment unless a significant failure in the containment vessel of the spent fuel occurs.Therefore the use of nuclear energy should be used as an alternative to environment destroying methods.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  453. INOV8TN

    No way!

    It was the wrong way to go 40 years ago when the designs used in these Japanese reactors were being vetted and blessed by the NRC and DOE and it is still the wrong way to go. The economics of powerplant development don't account for the full life cycle of the radiation involved.

    Check out the Technology Review article from the 60's. A whistle-blower engineer broke down and asked for a few minutes to compose himself during testamony before Congress. By the time he was finished most of the room was in tears.

    We can't base our power decisions on the hopes of an investment community who want a quick buck.

    We have 'shovel-ready' coal and the technology to dig it and burn it safely today.

    We have 'drill-ready' oil within our borders too.

    We need to use the resources we have not the ones we don't know how to use safely.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  454. Nixon Odari

    Absolutely not! God forbid but if what is happening in Japan happens here and we are forced to move where will people go.I live in Illinois and i found out that there are i think eleven nuclear plants and if they were to melt down I dont know where i would move to.Its easier said than done people think moving is just picking up your stuff and going its more than that,leave your job and if you live pay check to pay check then your world will seem to come crushing down on you.I hope we never ever have to deal with a nuclear disaster.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  455. Irene

    We must avoid the false siren song of "clean" and "green" nuclear energy. The failures in this technology are both technical and human, exacerbated by stunning natural events. Lack of oversight at the plants in Japan was due to humans. The old technology failed as well. These same short cuts and short falls exist in the US. It is ludicrous that the US has approved extending use of 40 year old plants here. In the case of accident and disaster, the consequences of nuclear radiation will be felt in situ and around the world. Nuclear waste can not be disposed of, just stored somewhere by humans who are fallible in locations which may also be vulnerable to natural disaster. Not clean and not green. We can do better.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  456. Jason Clarke

    Not to mention, there are enough natural uranium deposits in the world to fuel our nuclear energy needs for millions of years. Even if present day reactors were producing as much power as the coal industry, the fuel source would last over a thousand times longer. Take a look at the Canadian Candu "heavy water" reactors, much safer and more efficient.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  457. Doug Park

    Nuclear power is still the best alternative to fossil fuels. Today's Nuclear Power plants are being designed to be safer every year. We need to build more Nuclear plants not less but we must learn from what has happened and maintain our questioning attitude to make things even safer than before.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  458. Tyler

    Nuclear power is a necessary evil until other forms of clean energy can gain enough support in government to become feasible alternatives to fossil fuels and nuclear power. I am sure that most people would rather wake up looking at wind turbines every day rather than experiencing one nuclear meltdown in their lifetime. I hope this can serve as a wake up that urges more people to support wind energy, and allow for a larger budget dedicated to increasing the efficiency of solar energy.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  459. Tristen

    I think it depends if we should use Nuclear energies to make electricity. We could go with something safer like solar energies or wind energies but it would cost us a lot of money but it is renewable and is a lot more safe then nuclear. It also does not put pollution into our environment. If we use Nuclear power it doesn't cost a lot of money and can save us money for maybe roads or things which need to be fixed but does let a lot of pollution into our environment. We could use coal which is safer and not a lot of money but in the long term it puts a lot of pollution into our environment. I say it depends because if you want our government to save money for bigger things like things which need fixing or roads then you would probably wanna go with nuclear. If you would like it good for the environment in the long term then go with something safer like wind or solar power but want us to put a lot of our money into it.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  460. neil

    yes ! without a doubt it is the only viable alternative we have now to fossil fuels as of this moment. Having lived near Indian Point for over 40 years has not worried me much. I think that disasters like the one, going on now in Japan, should be used as a example in building better power plants or retrofitting older plants. After all if we really want to be a green planet we need to move away from fossil fuels quickly. Is this the ultimate solution ... well it's the best we have right now!

    March 17, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  461. Jerry R

    YES, we have no choice right now given our current energy technology. Until scientists develop new technology, solar, wind, or whatever comes next, we have nothing that even comes close to meeting our ever growing energy needs. Each disaster teaches us lessons and helps us improve to prevent future disasters.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:23 pm |

    Nuclear power should not be used to generate electricity because it can never be safe; nuclear power generation is inherently dangerous and safety is always balanced against commercial interests & cost, with safety always taking second place to commercial interests. The stricken reactors in Japan are a perfect example of not building for the worst-case scenario, leading to the present disaster. It doesn't take a genius to foresee that the earthquake would unleash a tsunami, knocking out the unprotected backup generators, leading to potential melt-down problems.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  463. Sean

    No, nuclear power is far too dangerous. We need to invest in clean, green, renewable energy sources, which DO exist and could be up and running if given the subsidies the nuke industry is currently receiving. Oil, natural gas, coal and nukes are literally destroying our planet and we're actually in a crisis- with climate change from oil and coal [there's NO SUCH THING as clean coal], gas fracking poisoning water, nukes spreading radiation and producing waste we cannot get rid of- and people are being mislead about that very real crisis by the very industries that are making billions in profits from them. Wake up world- your time is running out.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  464. Raymond Giipson

    There is no need for nuclear power with all its inherent dangers and tremendous costs. This is not event to mention the horrid loss of life due to cancer when something does go wrong for what ever the reason. Plus, no one has come up with a safe way to store any sorts of wast.
    I AM TOTALLY BEHIND GEOTHERMAL. Especially around the Ring of Fire there are enough areas that are more than hot enough to create all the energy a nuclear plant could create. Read the reports of geothermal energy potential of the Western US from government and other sources. Plus, even if a whole plant blew up with geothermal, there would be not problem other than rebuilding it. The area would not contaminate the area for the next 40,000 years and kill all life in the area. We are a small planet and can not take the chance anymore.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  465. Carol Lynch

    No, I do not think nuclear power should be a continuing source of energy. Will the "spent rods" take over the planet because we do not know how to dispose of them? Pehaps we should look into the Solar Bracelet, proposed in the 80s as a more efficient, reliable, and safe source of energy. However, I doubt anything will change until we have legislators who are willing to focus on what is good for the country and its people rather than caring only about the business community.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  466. Thomas

    NO! How can we afford it? Beyond the fears of a meltdown, nuclear power plants cost way too much to be justified. To build a truly safe plant, you have to use enormous amounts of resources, not only for the plant but to house the spent fuel rods that we can't make inert! We have over 9000 metric tons of waste now and are not completely sure if burial alone is enough! You could build many geothermal plants with the same money and resources without the fear of what to do with the waste!
    Even new clean coal plants are cheaper and less hazardous!

    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  467. Bill Moore

    No. If the American people would not be so wasteful between solar, wind, and hydro power and use coal as a suppplement we would have plenty enough of electric. People need to start thinking long term.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  468. SS McIntire

    Yes. Compare how many people have died from mining & burning coal over the last 20/30 years compared to Nuclear Power. Then factor in CO2 emited into the atmosphere by coal. Coal also has lethal waste that has already cost many lives & $$$$. Ask Kentucky about strip mining mountains!

    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  469. Anthony

    Depends on the nuclear energy. There are two types of nuclear power, fission and fusion. All nuclear power plants use nuclear fission. Right now nuclear fusion is not perfected and is not used. So to answer the question. No, I do not support nuclear fission. Too many cons and not enough pros. If we can perfect nuclear fusion which not only provides at least twice more power, but does not produce any radiation then I would support the U.S. to be run by nuclear power.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  470. Brian

    You can line up people on either side of this issue all day long. The question I ask is "Why can't we develop solar, wind, and other clean renewable sources of energy"? We have the ability. Do it already. Just do it! Sure it's gonna cost but what's going to be the cost in the end if that plant has a meltdown?

    Pittsburgh, PA

    March 17, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  471. Mike Pazden

    Of course Nuclear Power should be used as a source of energy. Exponentially more people have died and/or have otherwise been harmed by hydrocarbon based energy and/or electricity in general than will EVER be harmed by nuclear. Maybe we should stop using rain water because a few people are killed by lightning every year. The question may not be stupid but only a luddite would argue against the intelligent use of nuclear. Let those people shut off their lights and power,heat AC etc and live without power for a few cold (hungry)winters and hot summers. Then ask them again letting them know that if their answer is still against Nuclear the power will remain off while they reconsider. Same holds true for those who oppose oil exploration.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  472. Larry Gregoris

    Definitely not !! Go green and use hydroelectric, solar and wind methods to produce electricity or natural gas. Nuclear, coal and oil fired turbines are destroying our existence. We don't need another three mile island or gulf disaster. Harvest the sun, wind and water resources which are renewable and always in supply.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  473. Sam

    Yes. Clean. ANo greenhouse gas. The ONLY generation of such that can be used for baseline power generation. There's NO way solar or wind, no matter how many you build, which can provide basline power and provide consistant reactive power generation. And new nukes don't have the need for offsite power for cooling after shutdown, from what I've read in the past few days, so critics can't use that as a reason for not building new plants.

    Uncle Sam does have to solve the used fuel problem however. We've spent billions establishing a site and from what I can tell, the only reason it got quashed was political (thanks to Harry Reid mainly).

    Boths sides have to give politically. I'm all for alternative wind and solar. But if we build them, we also have to make significant transmission lines and restructure existing systems. Conservatives don't want the investment in wind and solar. Liberals who want wind and solar then turn around and complain or file suit to prevent transmission lines from being sited.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  474. L.J. Varela

    No to nuclear power. As long as there is nuclear waste and humans run the plants. Both are bound to go wrong.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  475. charles deters

    I am against nuclear power and definitely a plant located anywhere near a fault line (big or small). You cannot just turn them on and off in case of an emergency and anything that cannot be shut down (quickly) should not be permitted. Another problem is why are the spent rods in the higher level. Wouldn't they be easier to cool down if they were at ground level or below? I didn't understand that! The billions spent on the Japan plant ought to be a severe warning that nuclear plants are not able to be controlled at a high risk of damage to human life and food growth.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  476. regina s.axelrod

    No it should not. If you listen to the nuclear people they say this was unpredictable, unforseen and could not have been planned for, in Japan. That is the point. There are too many uncertainties with nuclear energy that we can not plan for resulting in a big problem if the unimaginable happens. There has been no discussion of disposal of nuclear waste (which no country has done successfully) or the ease of converting civiian nuclear material to weapons grade. There are other ways of turning the lights on than destroying the planet with fossil fuels and the environment with nuclear . We need to focus on energy efficiency and renewables. We have no other choice if we are responsible to ourselves and future generations.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  477. betty

    We need nuclear power as an alternative to oil – wind and solar are not cost effective or an adequate source for all our energy needs. We have not built any new nuclear plants using the new technologies available like those now used in France. Nuclear is safe. We won't all have major earthquakes.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  478. Jim Miller

    Hi Ali,

    I have great regard for you intelligence. You a very good news man with wide ranging interests and knowledge.

    I think you personally should dig into available information on the latest construction and operation methods of nuclear plants. You may be aware of the very big changes that have taken place in the industry, but most of your viewers are not.

    I read an article a few years ago in a scientific magazine. I don't remember much from it, but I do remember that huge strides have been made in safety. Also, big advances have been made in rending more out of the fuel. This results in less radioactive waste.

    I do think that active earthquake zones should be avoided.

    Thanks for your time.


    March 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  479. Linda

    Nuclear energy is a great idea, if you could trust humans not to cut corners on design and safety. We have found out that you can't always trust corporations and governments (including the United States) with the peoples safety. Some bad apple always surfaces to make money at the expense of safety. Sadly, such being the case, we need to tend towards solar, wind and geothermal.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  480. Len

    Nuclear Power is an evil. My concern is the efforts on the Japanese Government, US Government and United Nations in steeping in and aiding in the situation.

    Just like we have Emergency Response for fire's in our cities and towns it would have been comforting to see the governments have something in place to fight this catastrophe instead of sitting back for five days crossing our fingers hoping that 50 men with pumps are gonna solve the problem.

    It did not appear that anything was in place to combat this problem.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  481. David Skocik

    We have a choice. If we go by the number of people injured or killed, then nuclear power comes out on top.

    The "sky-is-always falling" extreme environmentalists believe that we should not mine coal, use natural gas, stop pumping oil, and stop using nuclear power.

    The fact is when gasoline reaches European levels at $5-8 per gallon, people just won't stand for not being able to get to work. That's about the time the cost of heating and cooling their homes their homes would, as candidate Barack Obama said, "skyrocket." Industries will close and we'll be back living in 19th century America with people growing their own food, while it's daylight. Maybe we'll have propellers on our hats and solar cells on our backs.

    Let's get real.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  482. John Toftemark

    The cleanest, cheapest and most reliable power generation is hydroelectric power, next is nuclear power. The latter has new technology that can be built virtually fail safe and new recycling processes for the spent rods removing them as a potential problem

    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  483. Michael Clement

    Ali ,

    Nuclear power has been used for years and is a great source source of energy . It is a shame what has happened in Japan , but , we still need to over examine hot to keep these plants safe and to build them in areas that are relatively safe from mother nature and in a fail – safe mode. One of the biggest violators is the US Navy with their spent fuel disposal practices . Our safety and our planet need non destructive power sources and I am sure that after the incidents in Japan are studied , there will be a whole new generation on Nuclear Power Plants that will lead the way for everyones future . We all need to make sure that happens for everyones benefit .

    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  484. James Mott

    It would be foolish to disregard the events in Japan. I think, at a minimum, we should seriously consider whether we should place reactors as close together as this plant (Fukushima Daiichi) did,

    We must also question how soon we should phase out the plants with older, less safe design.

    However, every single person that responded to this question is using electricity. I find it hard to listen to the NIMBY/BANANA crowd. I suspect that coal power plant emissions kill FAR more people that Nuclear plants ever have.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  485. mari austad

    If nuclear power is so safe then why after years of a steady decline in my health did my doctors finally discover I have 3 times the upper expected limit if uranium in my blood just from living 3 miles from a Calif. plant? There are NO other possible explanations for this blood level and this was without a disaster, this was merely proximal exposure! I doubt I'd be alive today if a real disaster had taken place. Mari

    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  486. David (D.J.)

    Yes the need for power will grow larger every year, with that said we need a safe supply! This can be done if we apply what is learned from what is going on in Japan, don't cut corners on safety also keep up with Technology plan on spending money on updates from the start so we have the funding in place to make up dates THERE IS NO FREE LUNCH!! but we will need power in the future to power the toastter. OH by the way one of our largest ships helping with rescue services is a NUKE.


    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  487. Tim

    The disaster in Japan is just a horrible reminder of what the entire world has feared since the advent of nuclear power. I'm old enough to remember nuclear drills under our desks and the frequent signs for radioactive shelters. Why are people so naive as to champion for extremely rich and powerful energy companies instead of for their own safety and peace of mind and that of many future generations to come? How does the average person benefit from nuclear powered energy plants? They are the most expensive to build and run and they greatly endanger the general world populace with no solution for the dirty waste known. Wake up folks! It's time to stop living in fear.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  488. ancientrelic

    No to nuclear power, no way to EVER get rid of waste. I'm Native American and to see our earth/planet and its people go thru this terrible diaster is beyond words. Being TOO confident in ourselves and our ability to conquer this silent power has caused this mistake. Being Native American/Indian does Not mean that I'm mentally means that I look at this earth as our Mother...we will not exsist without a safe place to live. Find ways to use what we HAVE , coal, wind, water not a hidden, deadly power that raises its ugly head to kill or mamed when others think they have it tamed.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  489. Lina

    Honestly I think nuclear tech is one of humankinds worst inventions ever. I live in Kentucky in the New Madrid fault system, unfortunately there are at least 3 nuclear plants within the fault system. If another event happens like it did from Dec. 1811-Feb 1812 of at least 3 quakes estimated to be as large as 8.0 and higher, I shudder at thee thought of what could happen. Those quakes caused the Mississippi to flow backwards in areas not to mention it changed its route, it caused a large lake to form, and liquifation was wide spread, another words the solid ground turned to liquid. Add some things from today like the number of towns that are already starting to fall into the mines that run under them, some of the towns are likely to be gone after a large quake. Next to none of the buildings, roads, bridges, or anything else in this LARGE fault sytem are even built to withstand a moderate quake. So just what the hell do they think will happen when the earth here rocks and rolls again. After all when it loose before is was felt far and wide all the way to the east coast. When a quake happens here it's far worse than in California. I lived quite comfortably with quakes on the west coast. The geology there actually helps limit the area the quake can effect, that isn't so here. It only took a small quake that wasn't even quite a 4 to cause sink holes to open along its path. The really sad thing, most people in this fault zone don't even realize what they live on.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  490. John

    Far more people have died in the coal industry than the nuclear industry. It's been a safe and reliable source of power for decades. The catastrophe in Japan will teach us much. A knee–jerk reaction is unwise.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  491. James T

    Is this even a fair question? Not all forms of energy are viable in all parts of the country. Further, risk perception (on the environment and human health) and investment for energy production per acreage of land differs. Lastly, nuclear power regulations differ between the US and Japan, so no direct comparison can truly be made.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  492. NorthAATL

    No. At least not until there is a solution for safe disposal of nuclear waste. The Fukushima situation is bringing the dangers of the spent fuel rods to the public eye. Storing the waste long-term, and transporting it to a storage site if one ever gets approved, are both fraught with dangers. Calling nuclear energy "clean" makes no sense because it ignores inherent long-term waste of the dirtiest and most contaminating nature.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  493. Michele K.

    What happened to solar power? Wouldn't that be an unlimited source of energy? Is it financially feasible/safer?

    Michele K.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  494. Sandra hansen

    Nuclear and coal are completely irresponsible. They do not have the technology for proper disposal and what remains pollutes. I am aware the general public thinks of the moment versus the future, but I would like my evolving generations to have a healthy safe planet. There is a big huge round ball in the sky that provides all the energy we need and we have the ability to harness it. We simply have no excuses to be this irresponsible or take unnecessary risks using nuclear power. If you are willing to risks your families health or lives just because you think it is a good idea then I am thankful you are not my family!

    March 17, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  495. bob

    i think that nuclear power is safe.i hope that we dont have a knee jerk reaction before all the facts are known.the more modern reactors in this country are inherently safe.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  496. William H fitch III


    Renewable energy (all of them) can meet all of our energy requirements, including electrical base load. This can be done with storage and smart grid technology. All that is required is for EVERYBODY to get behind it and couple it with aggressive energy conservstion programs. But, $30 Billion promises have already been made, and those "people" don't like indian givers.....


    March 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  497. Robin

    Of course it should. Let's face it, this 40-year old plant survived one of the worst earthquakes the world has known. The problem is that the tsunami took out the cooling system.
    How many nuclear plants face danger from tsunamis? Those that do should rethink the design of their cooling systems.
    Put it another way – ask the people who currently live at or near sea level what they think of burning more oil to replace existing nuclear plants!

    March 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  498. Kat

    I feel that in our oil driven economy, nuclear energy is the least threat to oil. We heat our homes, drive our vehicles, and create electricity, with oil. If we used wind or geothermal, it could replace the oil. Big oil probably doesn't like that, due to the loss of revenue.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  499. Marita

    The problem with nuclear energy is you can't 'afford' even one accident: the ramifications are extreme, widespread and last for centuries.

    But as we all know, anything mechanical will eventually break and then you have a disaster at hand.

    In the case of Chernobyl, besides the immediate deaths, destruction and injuries, the land within a large perimeter is completely toxic and unusable, thyroid cancer surgery is considered routine and thousands of people in neighboring cities and even countries are still suffering from cancer as a result of the radiation. The C explosion happened almost 25 ago...

    On top of all of that, there is no intelligent way to dispose of the nuclear waste that is created. It is packed into large barrels and simply buried in underground caves.

    Anyone who thinks nuclear energy is the way to go needs to learn about what radiation does to humans (accidents will happen), watch the documentary on Chernobyl and then do a little research and find the closest nuclear waste disposal to them.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  500. Michael Schroeder

    We should use nuclear power. If you think of all of the accidents which resulted in the loss of life and of the environmental disasters, nuclear power is much safer than any others. Coal mines have had many fatalities over the years and the oil sector has had accidents which have impacted the environment in an awful way. All sources of power have their risks and from what I have watched on television I see a lot more oil covered birds on beaches and ambulances at the entrances of coal mines than disasters at nuclear power plants.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  501. Elisa Bell

    Absolutely, We should use all sources available to us. Nuclear is only one of the options , Solar and wind should also be used. Developing safe ways to build plants and safe containment of the spent elements can and must be done. We must also spend the money to develop and use more Solar energy, right alongside of wind power. Anything to move us away from oil.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  502. Robert

    We're supposed to be going green, not glowing green, we have plenty of wind,water,and sun to use and therefore I feel nuclear power is stupid. if we didn't have nuclear power plants, we wouldn't have to worry about them now would we. Not to mention the left over garbage that has to be kept SOMEWHERE

    March 17, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  503. George Nisson

    Nuclear energy is the only clean source of power available to break our dependence on oil. We need to switch to electric/hybrid vehicle in a big way and that will require significant increases in electric generation. Coal is not the answer as it dumps far to many pollutants including radiation into our environment. No connection to the energy industry.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  504. Teresa, California

    Sadly, "NO"... Too many human beings are just too greedy... (companies will circumvent safety regulations at any opportunity to save a dime); too careless... (look around you in the work place, how many of your peers are working to the best of their abilities); too lazy... (how many of your peers are just treading the minutes until quitting time rolls around); and, too irresponsible... (it's not my problem, let so-and-so do it).

    It's no wonder that many predictions have the rodents and insects inheriting the earth... they certainly will do a better job than we're doing.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  505. Lou, Florida

    Sure YES, but not build and run by private companies or corporations... Means SAFETY first, not PROFIT as a result of speculation. And not just in this field !

    March 17, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  506. Dan

    I think that nuclear power is a nessessary evil. Nobody likes it, but we need to have it. If we could all put solar panels on the tops of our homes then maybe we could use less nuclear power.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  507. bob spence

    All forms of energy production have risks. Even solar energy. Just imagine the blindness that would occur if there was a major light spill from solar panels.

    And, solar would cause great confusion. Where would we send the check to pay our monthly energy bill?

    Solar power is clearly a Communist plot against our Capitalist, Corporate Energy friends.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  508. Sheila

    WHen I was in college I argued with a friend that we should have a reliable way to dispose of nuclear waste before we go forward with more plants. He was sure that such an important aspect would be solved in the near future and that I had no faith in science. I felt then as I do now that prudence is the key word not faith. That was in 1977.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  509. Joe Cowan

    Yesterday you asserted that " no one" would suggest that wind energy was capable of replacing the 20% of electricity generation. In point of fact, both the W. Bush administration and the Obama administration have stated that 20% of American electricity generation could be generated by wind power.

    Given that you selected a person from the Heartland Institute, a place that denied the science of tobacco causing cancer, denied the science on the ozone layer, and now deny the science on global warming; one has to conclude that you have no interest in accurate science or an honest debate on the issues and are simply a corrupt water carrier for the right wing. I would say you should be ashamed, but I doubt any right winger has the capacity for shame.

    And as far as nuclear energy being economic and solar energy being uneconomic. Nuclear energy is only economic for the private sector because they think they can get the taxpayer to pay for storage of nuclear waste for 200,000 (half life of plutontium is 20,000 years and it takes 10 half lifes to plutonium to safe ) years. Hopefully the storage location will be close to somewhere you and your descendants live. But it won't be a storage facility run by the government unless the current law is amended. The current law only allows the government to assume responsibility for nuclear waste if a safe location can be found to store it. There is not place on the face of the earth that can determined prospectively to be safe for 200,000 years.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  510. Judy Stumpf

    The feeling that you are fleeing your home and may never EVER be able to return is one of the most sickening feelings in the world- ask anyone who lived near TMI in March, 1979. No more nuclear power plants; not now – not ever.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  511. adam

    For at least the last forty years we've been warned of the dangers of every kind of energy we use, from oil to coal to nuclear. And through those warnings, we only react when one of those resources presents some kind of danger or is threatened by global events. It's well past high time to develop and implement technologies that provide clean energy from renewable or unlimited resources on a massive scale.

    One of the major hurdles is the fact that you can't mine wind, sunlight, or steam; there's no money to be made from digging big holes in the earth and processing what's dug out, and no money to be made from dealing with waste and byproducts. No, you simply put up a wind turbine, or a solar panel, or tap a geothermal source and nature does the work. Granted, those wind turbines and solar panels need to be built, erected and maintained, but there's not nearly the same infrastructure needed for oil, coal and nuclear resources.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  512. Dan

    Nuclear is part of World today and I think the Japan disaster should make our world governments look at using the cleaner & safer options of wind and solar. The US Government offers home owners programs to convert to solar. I can't see why not it comes with so many benefits Cheaper , Cleaner and When any type power grids fails the solar home is still makes its own power.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  513. John Betley

    my brother has worked at nuclar power plants in the US for many years. And now is fighting luciema.
    No more plants.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  514. Dr. J

    Of course it should. Nuclear power has a nearly perfect safety record in the U.S. In Japan the earthquake and tsunami are the overwhelming source of injury and death. Much of the talk about radiation levels and their effect in the last few days has been nonsensical though dramatic. The people of Japan face much more danger from the toxic chemicals released from destroyed warehouses, industrial/medical facilities, and residential waste.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
  515. Manuela Neto

    Your question is definitely a great question! No doubt! Great timing, too.
    I'm very much pro-renewable energy. Governments and large corporations need to focus much more on the safety of our environment and a bit less on economics.
    In Canada we have a great promoter of renewable energy, David Suzuki and his Foundation. Switching to renewable energy can be done and not necessarily at a higher cost.
    (Suzuki is a well-known Canadian scientist and environmental activist).

    March 17, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  516. Vince Carson

    More nuclear power? Yes, until solar and wind power become economically feasible and if fusion power becomes practial, they can be converted to the fusion model. Until then they are the least enviormentally impacting and can be erected anyplace that has an adequate cooling source. The down-sides are that, at present the disposal of the waste products is next to impossible and the fact that the average voter has a paranoic phobia panic attack whenever the words nuclear and radiation are used.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  517. Matt

    Despite this crisis, I still believe nuclear energy is one of the answers. The reactors in Japan should not be representative of the whole industry because technology has changed since their creation. Reactor designs no longer have to rely on active cooling systems, nor do they even have to use Uranium/Plutonium. We should work towards phasing out the older plants and replacing them with Gen III designs, like you normally would do with any other technology. This would also address the waste problem because I've read some of them can actually generate power from spent fuel. In closing, I think the answer is to not shun nuclear energy, but to advance it. Coal was some pretty nasty stuff at one point in its career and in my location we still can't eat fish often because of the mercury...

    March 17, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  518. Dan

    Nuclear power can be safe. The problems that we are encountering include obsolete nuclear reactors, and - lack of a 'safe' fuel. I wish I could remember the details: however at the same time as Chernobyl, a 'safe' (use that term loosely) fuel was developed that - when the fuel was overheated, it caused the uranium to separate, and stop reacting, effectively shutting down the reactor. This was tested and works.

    I am also dismayed at the once sided reporting that I'm seeing. I'm seeing a lot of 'scare' reporting going on, but little substance behind it. For example - Earlier today an expert was called in, and noted that some reactors only have half the battery as the failed plant in Japan. However - no reason was given (and the reporter did not ask).

    We also need stronger oversight. have the NRC to have the power to - at any time see any details, and if / as necessary require the problem fixed (or reactor shut down). Yes, I've heard of horror stories of a problem that was not fixed for years. This _should_ never happen. Also – relating to this is stronger whistle blower laws. Encourage a mandatory reward / reporting system, so safety problems are publicly displayed, and corrected, and if a person reports the problem they are rewarded (rather than fired).

    March 17, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  519. JC Hayes

    Nuclear? No. Why? There is one aspect of nuclear energy I have never heard discussed: like oil, coal, and natural gas, nuclear is a non-renewable resource. The nuclear proponents would have the world make another expensive, long term, and very dangerous investment in something that is in the end just another doomed strategy. Doomed. Non-renewable. Is the human race so collectively stupid that we can apply none of the lessons the great oil debacle should have taught us?

    March 17, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  520. Mauricio

    No. No one has even created a power plant capable of containing it's own radioactivity in the event of a disaster. The creaters of these reactors are to worried about money and costs to build a worthy system that won't endanger the entire surrounding ecosystem.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
  521. Sharon in Alaska

    No, I feel this is something that needs to be addressed collectively on a Global scale. Radiation doesn't recognize borderes or boundries. It is not fair that a single nations power choices can seriously impact others, hundreds if not thousands of miles away. It is a Violation of human rights. I do not find comfort when it is said that other countries " are not expected to experience" fallout. I was always taught to stay one step ahead and expect the unexpected. My thoughts and prayers are with Japan in this time of great difficulty and need.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:38 pm |
  522. Dr Polanams

    I'd rather have the potential nuclear meltdown in my backyard then sending someone else's children to some Muslim countries to fight for fossil fuel any day. When you evaluate the cost of lives & dollars spent in wars versus nuclear power plants what costs more? If Americans like laptops, TVs and SUV then we must be responsible and provide our own resources. Nuclear technology provides energy, jobs and higher education that we desperately need for the future. Let what happened in Japan be a lesson learned of what not to do instead of lack of knowledge fear.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  523. Tom

    No, The reason being is people will continue to try to increase profits or demostrate ignorance by doing stupid thinks. Look at the reason for the two previous failures and the history in Japan. The goverments and reg. agency's are the same as the company except they make it look like they did not know, though they are paid to. We need to use what we have but no more.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
  524. Lauren

    Nuclear Power, regardless as to whats happening here, will always be a great source of power. Everyone is concerned about the health risks that this radiation may cause to people near this area, but what they don't realize is that if we take the proper preventative measures in the future, things like this wont happen. Think about all the people who die in unforeseen Natural Gas explosions. So, Do we stop using Natural Gas? No. We find new way to be proactive and prevent further situations like this from happening. People must not understand that the reason for these reactors not cooling properly, is that the Tsunami knocked out the generators. I remember when I was a kid, when my mom couldn't pay the power bill, we would knock on our neighbors door and say "Hey, can we plug this extension cord in?" That way we would have a heater in the winter, our refrigerator would keep our food cooled. So on and so forth. My point with that is, There should ALWAYS be some sort of external OFF SITE power plan. If the powers out everywhere, have some sort of Ship (seeing that most Nuclear plants are near some body of water) that can provide enough power to the back up generators , or whatever needs to be powered, to properly cool the fuel rods. Now the first thing people may think with that is.. Cost. Well, If you spend the extra money needed now to take these preventative measures, really in the long run, IF another situation like this were to occur, you would really be saving more. More lives.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
  525. Michael L.

    With the examples of Three-Mile Island, Chernobyl, and now, the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear complex, it is clear that the policy of designing and building nuclear plants to the most likely worst-case scenario is suspect and very likely faulty. I have no doubt that nuclear energy plants can be safe in the short term, my suspicions are that they cannot be safe in the long term. Until the issues of spent fuel rods can be addressed and solved, ( there is great progress being made on this ), and designing plants to withstand the true worst case scenario, new nuclear plants should not be built. While we are talking energy production, the coal industry also needs held to a higher accountability. The Big Coal Lobby in Washington D.C. flaunts their collective middle fingers at regulation and safety. The C.E.O.'s of these companies should be jailed for their profit motivated crimes.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
  526. Cheryl Harrison

    Nuclear power has and always will be a very bad idea. I was involved in trying to find a place to store nuclear waste in Nevada but the amount of time required for radioactive isotopes to reach a safe level is so long that no one can predict what the long term effect would be and the project was stopped. There is no SAFE way to handle radioacttive waste and until that can be done I don't think we should be nuclear fuel but on a very limited basis, like for x-rays. Even that has long term disposal risks. I firmly believe we are asking for a major scale problem if nuclear power continues to be used.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  527. Sandra

    I live between 2 nuke plants in central Pennsylvania and I feel absolutely not since there is STILL no way to safely dispose of nuclear waste. Are we going to keep accumulationg this stuff forever? Where are we going to put it? We lived through the nightmare of 3 Mile Island in the 70's and don't ever want that mental anguish again. Additionally, there seems to be no common sense regarding shut down once a nuclear plant has reached the end of its planned life. Vermont Yankee seems to be the exception rather than the rule. Current thinking seems to be "Well, it's still working so we'll run it until it drops". And when it drops, the destruction may be greater than anything we can imagine. Wind, water, solar, geo-thermal.....that should be our future. In the meantime, give us "brown-outs" if that's what it takes. Why didn't anybody plan for the phase-out of these plants which are now 30 or 40 years old??? They had decades to plan for it!! And why wasn't anybody in the federal government DEMANDING the power companies plan for phase out???

    March 17, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  528. Ed Wilson

    Why Nuclear Power should not be used as a source of energy in the United States.
    1. There is no safe way to store or get rid of nuclear waist.
    2. US Nuclear Power plants have been built with inadequate safety plans. Example: The Diablo Canyon Power Plant was built without a plan for earthquakes or tsunamis. Its reactors are within a couple of miles of several faults in the Pacific Ocean and the plant is less than 500 feet from the Pacific.
    3. Any large emergency in the U.S. is suppose to run by FEMA, and FEMA's history shows it is not up to the task.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  529. B.J

    Perhaps the greater question about safety of these Nuclear plants, as well as Oil Rigs, is can, or will the contractors or sub-contractors put a less expensive component in the building of the project. We all know it has been done many times, wheather they were told to watch their budget, or they are skimming the cream, it happens.

    I don't think we have, as humans understand that their are Universal Laws in place, that is why our planet is suffering.

    Cause and Effect. It comes down to that, I pray these wonderful people will come through this nuclear nightmare okay, their dignity is profound. They are masters at peace negotiation on a personal or political level. Perhaps we should teach this in our schools from at an early age, because as a society, we are definetly lacking.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  530. rennie

    ali, im a man of meger knowledge to say the least, i've been glued to cnn around the clock literally since the earthquake, i hear truth and lies or cover ups the world is scrambling for the truth and cnn has been covering better than any1 else, bravo literally, we need it as a species.
    My comment being 1) why is there so much allowable cover up when more than Japan is at risk here, Japan is yes a devastation, yes great sorrow for the Japanese people, but far more is at risk we just dont know
    2) why as far as nuclear power r we getting side tracked on a 1 lane highway so to speak, nuclear power has more output with less geography needed true more versatile more power over more time as well, down side a 10 mile strip of solar panels or and wind generators dont potentially pollute the next county or close neighboring country when they stop working properly 3) why not argue of a multiple safe guard combination being put reactors zoned to areas of distance from possible cities towns etc. and solar wind combined projects closer to the public 4) why argue it has to be only 1 as if that's the only way, why is the reality of the human element the largest deciding factor, always seems to be who can argue best gets the money pot, the human element is always left to suffer possibly at some point 5) these nuclear reactors in Japan from day 1 have had nothing but salt water pumped on them, if salt water is the last resort for a hazard like now well we've been at the last resort from day 1 and we use words like ok and hope for better, not that bad, if the house next door was burning down and the only way to stop all other from suffering was to bury the burning house then somebody bury it stop throwing useless water on it when everyone is going to suffer, weve been at last resort since day 1 we cant save them come on some body wake up and drop the sand and concrete on this and stop willingly polluting the poor Japanese population and possible everyone else, when human populations are to suffer why does anybody stop and put a dollar cost on human life, where is the humanity in all this useless arguing, someone just do what we know will stop it

    March 17, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
  531. Ginny Sarrassat

    It has always been the opinion of my husband and myself that Nuclear power should never be used until there is a way to neutralized completely. Until then No

    March 17, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
  532. Jim

    Absolutely, the US nuclear industry designs and plans for the hazards, both natural and manmade. The issues in Japan are reasons to take pause and assess our plants and embrace the lessons and knowledge learned from this tragedy. The one lesson the stands as a stark reminder is to never ever challenge mother nature. The site where the Fukushima plant is built, is one of the highest and riskiest seismic zones in the world and one of the worst known for tsunamis. Although, we do not know with certainty at this early stage what the failure modes were or what caused them, we do believe the main modes of failure were caused by the tsunami not the siesmic event. It is believed the tsunami knocked out the main source of power and, the emergency backup sources of power, multiple emergency diesel generators. If the plant had been designed and built for a worst case scenario, as we do in the United Stated, all the reactors and spent fuel pools would be secued at this point and being prepped to restart and supply the much needed power the Japanese people need at this time. The fact of the matter is, the plant was built essentially at sea level in a zone known for potentially giant tsunamis. How irresponsible is that? Especially following the Indonesian tsunami, one would have thought Tokyo Electric would have rethought the placement of this plant relative to the dangers. Was the almighty dollar the trump card? Just like in the financial crisis we cannot let money drive critical decision making. This is a slendid example of what can happen when corporations are recklessly left to their own vices without regulatory oversite. We in the United States design and plan for these scenarios and United States Nuclear Reguatory Commission does a great job enforcing this philosophy and challenging licensees to do better and over-design for postulated accidents. Ours is a very robust system.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
  533. Priscilla

    No, nuclear power is not an acceptable form of energy. Even plants that run without incident are producing radioactive waste that poses significant dangers in storage, from devastating environmental consequences to potential security hazards. However, that does not leave coal as the only option.

    Our country needs an energy policy that reflects a true paradigm shift: focus on real conservation while developing alternative, reusable sources like solar or wind. Those are the true areas for the future. If we choose to devote millions/billions of dollars into nuclear energy, we are showing a complete lack of vision while putting our environmental and economic future at risk..

    March 17, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
  534. Jeff

    Definitely not.

    We should work with the planet and not against it. As it is we are already harming the planet and therefore killing ourselves, and harming the future of generations to come. We should use diverse renewable forms of energy that are clean and safe, even if it means that we need to make some sacrifices.

    If would be up to me, I would stop this madness, even if we needed to go back to carriages and horses as methods of transportation, instead of draining the planet from its oil, not knowing the long term consequences deep within the Earth. We can use candles for lightning... but in reality, we do not even have to go that far back, not even close. We already know the devastation nuclear energy can produce, either by human error or natural disasters.

    If f we go green and safe, the benefits will outweigh the sacrifices. Going green and doing it safe," should be one of our greatest motto's and priorities, and it is a very doable proposition, in addition to farming organic as a default. Let's just do it. Enough is enough! We need to make sure our planet is safe!

    March 17, 2011 at 2:53 pm |
  535. Roberto

    I wouldn't be against the nuclear energy itself if it wasn't advocated from corporations (and their lobbyists) that always reassured about the safe state of the nuclear energy production without assuming a responsible and honest position about improving significantly the safety of such production. Companies that deal with dangerous economic activities should stop considering the possible damages as collateral factor that can be acceptable when compared to the prospective of huge profits. People deserve more respect!
    In addition I would like to know why the companies never seriously start working on the cold nuclear fusion. In Europe there have been very encouraging studies in that respect but they have not led to any further step because of "political will" even if EDF (Electricite' de France) has used them to conduct secret further research. I think that the potential of such technology should be seriously explored in an independent way especially because people deserve to know the interests really involved when it comes to energy.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  536. linda spencer

    No, it has become old school like coal. How many people have to die before we see that we have the means to use cheaper safer energy. Money always out weighs human lives. What do you do with waste from nuclear power or protect workers in mines. Enough!!!!

    March 17, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  537. Carole Doak

    No, nuclear power plants cost a great deal of money to build; are dangerous to operate and their waste lasts for centuries. We are destroying our planet with this waste. Also, it costs again when they have to be dismantled. They have a lifetime and are not renewable.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:55 pm |
  538. Chip

    I am a Sr. Reactor Operator at a nuclear power plant here in the US. A lot of the skeptics will automatically dismiss my opinion, but nuclear power should absolutely be a major part of our energy portfolio. Three Mile Island made our industry safer, Chernobyl was an entire different design and although most of the technical and mechanical details didn't apply to US reactors, it increased our focus on conservative decision making. We will no doubt learn and make changes from what we learn from the events at Fukushima when all the facts become available. The main thing to consider about the future of nuclear power is new designs are safer, they do not require power for passive cooling, and they will continue to get better. To address waste briefly. There is a technical solution, that issue is purely political.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
  539. Marie A. Curtis

    Unless and until nuclear waste (both high and low level) can be safely transported and stored for the hundreds of years of half-life necessary, we should not be considering any nuclear power. If we do not endanger a population now with production, then we endanger generations to come with the storage failure.

    Withoiut government support and limited liability, nuclear would be far too expensive to consider. So let's get real and look for SAFE alternative fuels. With the subsidies provided nuclear and fossil fuels in this country redirected to research renewables, we could have a safe energy future tomorrow.

    March 17, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
  540. Ralph

    Of course we should continue with nuclear power usage and development!!

    Where would we be if our ancestors had stopped the first time there was a ship accident, or at the first major traffic fatality, or the first airplane accindent??

    How are we ever going to get to the stars if we have this "quitting" attitude!

    March 17, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  541. Mitch

    Talk about people having to be hit in the head by a wet mop! Is it not clear by now to any reasonable human being with simple "common sense" that nuclear power is beyond our scope.
    It has nothing to do with anything other than the fact we cannot clean it up if the worst happens.
    Until we can undo radioactive contamination as it is happening-we should not have it.
    Has anyone considered what would actually happen if the American West coast snapped tommorow and sent another huge tsunami to Japan.
    Believe me the worst that could of happened -hasn't.
    Dismantle all Nuclear power plants until we have the technology to handle radiation.
    Because if the very worse that could happen-actually does-a quarter or more of our planet could be uninhabital for 60 years or more at best.

    All of you who think there is nothing to worry about because only fifty people died at Chernobyl.
    Well thats because everyone left the entire area.
    If you dont believe it- go pitch a tent and live there now and see how much radiation you get..

    March 17, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
  542. Stuart

    Yes, we need nuclear power to get off foreign oil, but it should be with FUSION reactors, NOT FISSION reactors. Not only do fusion reactors not go critical when the electricity goes off (they just shut down), but the waste produced is only radioactive for 10s or 100s of years, not 1000s. The end waste product is no more radioactive than coal ash. We need an International Manhattan Project type commitment to develop fusion technology to replace all fission reactors over time.

    Also, I think when all is said and done, we will discover that the Japan nuclear event was caused more by human error than by design faults in the plants. It is already apparent that TEPCO had falsified safety measures for the sake of profit.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  543. Karen Soike

    No, it's much too hazardous considering our own earthquake areas with nuclear operations. Long term storage of waste is insane.

    Ali, watch two movie documentaries on Netflicks: 2012 An Awakening & 2012 Science or Superstition and have some of those people on a show to discuss the changes in sunspots, and what the impact could be worldwide, if indeed some earth shift takes place 12-21-2012.

    Or what would happen in the USA, if wide spread power blackouts happened across this country due to our "old out dated" power grids or terrorist actions.

    Forget California's 3-4 Nuclear plants on fault lines. The Map of the numerous Nuclear plants Midwest to East Coast, looks far more scary. I was in absolute shock. I can't imagine what it would be like to have multiple nuke accidents or breakdowns in more that one state, can you?

    March 17, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
  544. advance2go

    Yes.....until solar, wind, and possibly geo-thermal energy technolgies are perfected and implemented. We must cease importing oil for a host of reasons which are well known. Coal is not a viable option due to pollutants generated when burned as well as its destruction of the natural landscape. The fact that the aforementioned alternate technologies are fairly distant, it would warrant the construction of Nuclear power plants. Nuclear plants are safe due to "Redundancy" a term meaning, that in place, are safety back-up systems upon system etc. Japan has revealed the 'Achilles Heel' with an 8.9 magnitude quake. Too many unanswered questions give pause to why this has occured. Earthquake scenarios are a large part of the design in these plants. Was this earthquake ruled s not possible? Does that mean its parameters were lower? All this will come to light but for future ones,finding areas of low seismic activity is a no brainer. They are dangerous and I in the 70"s protested them, at No Nuke rallies. Our current energy structure is unsustainable and finite. As a temporary bridge to the future energy technologies, nuclear power, in my opinion, should be enabled

    March 17, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  545. Henry Goodspeed

    Nuclear power has its downside but so do the other forms of energy. Global warming and the resultant redistribution of water from a concentrated position as ice caps to a diffused liquid position over the oceans (land is not gaining such additional weight) is causing a shift of pressure on the earth's tectonic plates from angles different from those to which they are accustom. Something has to give, and is, as evidenced by recurring earth quakes around the world particularly the Pacific Ring of Fire. That being the case, this tragedy was brought about by the burning of fossil fuels, arguably the most insidious form of energy. We should conserve energy and realize that nuclear energy is environmentally safer than some other forms.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
  546. Jenny M

    Nuclear Power has been proven time and again to be too dangerous as a power source! For those that say Nuclear power is safe in the US, they are delusional! Many of our Nuclear power plants are old and built on fault lines and next to major waterways. Nuclear power places everyone (all living things) in jeopardy along with the environment, for hundreds if not thousands of years. We do not have the right to doom the environment for many generations to come by using Nuclear anything! Period!

    That said, there are safer alternatives for power: Geothermal, Solar, Wind power, even coal and natural gas is safer. These would have ten fold positive effects: cleaner environment, create jobs, less reliance on foreign power sources and finally perhaps no more involvement in wars in which the US is involved trying to protect power sources.

    I have been following this tragedy in Japan and I have been very perplexed that no one, until the report I saw on CNN, mentioned Geothermal power. Unfortunately, the TV is a one way device, because I've been yelling Geothermal Power for a LONG time. I am in full support for broadcaster's and clear thinking people leading the nation to safer power alternatives. Kudos' to CNN for broadcasting Geothermal Power alternatives!!!!!! Here is a happy thought: All of the new NP plant's being built could be turned into Geothermal Power Plants with some modifications. This would use our present resources in a most effective way. Also, the field of power should be taken from the hands of monopolies and into the private sector of business. Increased efficiency, and more competitive prices for consumers. Think when Ma Bell was broken up... How much business and competitiveness in prices that opened up.

    In any case, at least think Geothermal Power... Clean, Safe, Economical. Oh, and did I say SAFE!

    March 17, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
  547. advance2go

    My message contains a contradiction for which I'll clarify. They are safe due to redundancy but not or even dangerous in a seismic event. A double edged sword. Thats why use them till a better system comes

    March 17, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
  548. john callan

    To answer your question should we use nuclear power as an energy source? I believe it would be wrong to have a knee-jerk reaction to this crisis. But, as our recent history has shown us in this country I believe certain precautionary action should be taken. We all know what happened on Wall Street and we found out that the regulatory committee that oversees Wall Street was asleep at the cash register. Then the crisis of the oil spill that BP had in our Golf of Mexico and once again the agency that was supposed to be looking out for us and overseeing this industry was off having a party in the Caribbean an engaging in all sorts of lewd conduct paid for by the oil industry.

    I suppose we have to look at that famous quote of Pres. George W. Bush "fool me once shame on you fool me twice” (you know what let's just forget the quote).

    Without delay we should have a bipartisan-independent study of our nuclear power industry and also the agency that is supposed to be overseeing it. We have to be sure we do not have another Wall Street or Gulf Crisis waiting for us in the nuclear power industry. Also, what do we do with the spent nuclear fuel?


    March 17, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
  549. Jeanne Higginbottom

    Only if we take all the precautions needed to make sure anyone living near the Nuclear plant are safe. I do not feel the plants should ever by in an area where there is any danger of an earthquake. we should upgrade our plants in view of the Japan crisis so that the same type of crisis could occur in America. We should consider the cost of upgrading our current plants and the cost of developing alternative sources of power. If the cost is near the same then definitely we should change to the safer sources of power.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  550. Jenny M

    One more thing to add to my earlier post against Nuclear Power: The dangerous, constant leakage of deadly chemicals into the environment is never spoken about. Only the big tragic meltdowns. What a legacy we are leaving to future inhabitants of this wonderful earth. Especially the ones that have no human voice and so are not heard until they are gone. Extinct...

    March 17, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
  551. Judith Carey

    Why does mankind always think we can outsmart Mother Nature? In my opinion there is no possible way to make nuclear power plants completely safe. Plus, there is no safe way to dispose of nuclear waste either. Governments should pay more attention to the world's great scientists, doctors, and environmentalists when it comes to the welfare of sustaining all life on our small spaceship earth.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  552. Abe

    I do not agree with using nuclear power for a source of electricity production. The outrageous risks to life do not outweigh any cheap electricity produced.

    I will not vote for any politician that endorses nuclear power plants!

    Existing nuclear power plants should be phased out and other sources of renewable energry should be implemented in their place.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  553. Tim

    I’ve been an environmental steward and activist of sorts for almost a decade. I have always lived in Appalachia, which from the Adirondacks all the way down to the Smokeys represents one of our Earth’s richest and most diverse biospheres. Conversely, it is home to a disproportionate number of nuclear reactors as well.

    On a long enough timeline anything can, and will, happen. While contemporary nuclear safety measures are widely helpful and appreciated, we mush also learn respect the simple fact that they will fail.

    Chernobyl contaminated an area nearly the size of the entire northern hemisphere. You don’t have to take my word for it, you can Google Image it in under a minute. With everyone jumping on the Chernobyl bandwagon, some groups have produced ‘experts’ to downplay the incident, fronting that there is now a viable and thriving ecosystem there. These so called experts said nothing about the infamous three headed frog, four legged duck, the cow with it’s mouth on top of it’s head, uncounted anomalous human births, or persistent thyroid cancer. In simple, perceivable reality, the existence of the Red Forest can not be argued with. I can not recommend highly enough, that all these fruitless talks between the stewards and the greedy, be dismissed and reconvened at a long conference table standing outside in said Red Forest.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  554. Mr. Anje' Waters

    Nuclear power has never been safe.It is not safe now and highly unlikely to ever be safe. Investors on wall street know this. That is why they want the tax payers to put up loan guarantees to build more.
    There is also no safe way to store spent fuel rods. The fact is that power plants are a for profit enterprise. Therefore common sense and past experience says that the bottom line comes first,safety second,not only with nuclear power but coal,oil, natural gas production,etc.
    Put simply, nuclear power is just much too dangerous to continue to use. Germany has been on a plan to eliminate all nuke plants.
    If we would put the money that the Obama administration wants to offer as loan guarantees ($34 billion?) to the nuke industry, and instead use that money to further the development of solar,wind,geothermal,etc.,we would be so much further in having a country with safe electricity in our country.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  555. O.C resident

    America is the Saudi Arabia of coal. We need to take full advantage of that. Forget Nuclear, what is it good for other than low CO2 emission?

    March 17, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
  556. Julia Chryst

    No we should not be using Nuclear Power as an energy source. It is blatantly clear that it is too dangerous. The risks to human life and our planet should not be worth it. ( In my opinion it is not worth it.)

    It is obvious that those in power politicaly, and those in charge of the nuclear power plants do not have the proper level of respect and fear for Nuclear power.

    Blinded by power and greed they cut corners in keeping power plants up to code, build these plants in risky places and to continue to believe we are invincible here in the United States is foolish and will have dire consequense.
    While I understand that without nuclear power we as Americans would have to make major changes It is high time we become willing to make some sacrifices for the better tomorrow. We need to push for cleaner, safer energy

    How long until we truely stand United and begin to show strength, morality, wisdom and character in our choices and decisions as a country?

    March 17, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
  557. Jean

    Absolutely nuclear power should continue as part of our energy mix.
    After we have witnessed an epic earthquake, shocking tsunami, and a total loss of infrastructure, now is not the time to lump all utilities and reactor designs in one barrel, nor is it time to throw nuclear energy under the bus.
    The US is not so naive as to forget about black lung disease, mining cave ins, mercury poisoning, acid rain, tanker and drilling effects to the environment, effects to ground well water from fracking, random gas explosions, and our energy dependence on foreign lands when some choose to mention only nuclear waste. What would a tsunami do to water based windmills? earthquakes and flooding to the integrity of dams? How about what dirt/sand might do to the effectiveness of costly solar collection panels? There are many things to consider and no one has all the answers. Many people have suggested only emerging energy sources, but we will need to continue to improve our existing ones to carry the load with the smallest carbon footprint as well. Clearly we must consider the safest, most cost effective energies when we think about electrical capacity, production, and energy capabilities–especially with population growth and needs. This must include nuclear power.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
  558. don

    Nuclear power is not safe because it is mangaed by humans. humans make mistakes and cut corners and lie and cheat. We've blown up 3 reactors in a couple of decades. Are you OK with blowing up a reactor every 10 to 15 years? How about if it's the one the one in your state?

    March 17, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
  559. Jamie Miller Chesapeake, VA

    Absolutly we should, BUT we should not use those types of energy near fault lines and coastal areas with active fault lines within the United States. Therefore the West coast should rely on Alternative sources, prior to the future Earthquake headed it's way!

    March 17, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  560. Pat Faherty

    What has happened in Japan regarding nuclear power has not frightened me away from newer and safer nuclear power plants. We should consider closing those plants that are similar to the Japanese plants that are being decimated by the disaster there. My main concern has always been a safe and efficient way of disposing of the spent fuel. Until that issue has been resolved I cannot fully support nuclear power plants.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
  561. Tere

    Nuclear Energy?! Economic loss today will certainly outweigh ANY threat to life tomorrow. And as long as there are nuclear reactors and radioactive waste (spend rods) the risks are TOO great not only for our present generation but for the next generations...

    What were we thinking?

    We must think clean, sustainable, renewable...
    Now is the time to fix it … Nix it … Contact your Representatives today!

    March 17, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  562. Jenny M

    Another addendum to my "No to Nuclear Power"

    The only reason why Nuclear Power is being pushed is all about money! There is a HUGE amount of money behind this push... And of course the Nuclear Power commission is going to say NP is safe, despite all the evidence to the contrary! They are paid to say it's safe. Shame on them!

    The evidence is clear just look at what is unfolding in Japan right now, along with the other past Nuclear Power tragedy's around the globe. It is suicidal to use Nuclear Power as a "safe" viable power source. To continue to use it we might as well all drink poisoned kool aide and give it all up!

    The only thing an explosion at a Geothermal Power plant would produce would be steam from water. Which by the way, would be good for the environment. I'd take a steam explosion any day. Wouldn't you?

    March 17, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
  563. Bob

    The use of continued use of fossil fuels poses more danger to the future of our planet and our health than the use of nuclear energy. If we don't make a really serious effort to switch to alternative energy sources, including nuclear, very soon the slight chance of radiation poisoning from a nuclear reactor is going to be the least of our worries!

    March 17, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  564. Barry

    Hi Ali. I am a fellow Canadian. I built the best nuclear reactor in the world. It ran flawlessly for 20 consecutive years. however, to answer your question, nuclear power plants are the scariest potential time bombs on the planet.Lack of honesty, transparency, cover-ups, cost-cutting measures, mechanical failures, natural disasters, lack of common sense and government bureaucracy all play a part in every nuclear disaster. I'm sure there are many more to follow. It is just a question of where and when.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  565. Jenny M

    No to Nuclear Power:
    Oh yeah! The "New" Nuclear Power plants would be buried underground and so would be safe. Yeah right! That's real safe. How utterly foolish! What gives us the right to bury Time Bombs? For those of you who are pushing them so hard down the country's and the worlds collective throats I have a question for you: Would you feel safe living withing 12 miles of one?

    How much more do we need to do to place our present generations and our future generations in jeopardy? Get real. Nuclear Power is dangerous! Period.

    Geothermal Power Plants would be a safer, cheaper source of NON ENDING "Clean, Clean, Clean" Power. How much more information do you need to make up your mind? If you don't believe me. Check it out for yourself. You can choose to do the right thing... Speak out! We all have a voice. Make intelligent choices.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  566. Gregory D. MELLOTT

    Nuclear power is a limited resource. Pull it back into civility generating security systems: aircraft carriers; submarines; over the horizon radar and other sensor systems, on earth or in space; possibly dealing with stray asteroids that would collide with the eart; or God forbid, bombs. Frankly though, I'd get the earth bound reactors next to a water basin large enough and "high" enough and otherwise readily "enabled" to cool the reactor no matter what happens; if we really need to use them.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  567. Gregory D. MELLOTT

    Let's develop deep geothermal. Volcanoes even beg for it, as I see it.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  568. Ali

    The plant was built in a location where it was known that a worst case scenario could be an 8.9 earthquake and a 25 foot tsunami. What's missing from the nuclear power debate is that if power plant safety is designed for "best case" scenarios, populations will be put at risk. If throwing water out of fly-by helicopters in the hopes that some of it might fall into a cooling tank is an acceptable line of defense to total meltdown because "worst case" was not seriously considered, we need to rethink our definition of "safe" in "clean" nuclear energy.

    March 17, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  569. Ray

    Chernobyl, Three mile island, France, and other countries that have had or have this kind of energy production nuclear plants, have at all times produce negative results. The companies that built these nuclear producing plants have always made their case that they have new technologies, new safety measures in place to produce electricity, but the case is that they do not have all the answers for when it comes to dealing with the unexpected. What has happened in Japan is a clear example of why we should not use this kind of energy producing agent. Can we afford to live with in a world contaminated for centuries with such a corrosive agent that can be the end of our world as we know it.
    So I say no to nuclear energy.
    With all the alternative natural sources of power in our disposal,
    like geothermal energy used in Iceland, wind, solar. It is idiotic to built such dangerous type of of energy producing plants like these for the only purpose of heating water to produce steam, to generate electricity.
    We had long time ago a genius like Nicholas Tesla that had invented a way to produce electricity freely, by using the natural geomagnetic energy of the earth. Our government or private corporation has kept it from being used because it would bring down the oil companies that have had a vested interest for it not to be used.
    Blueprints he left are available and we could be living in a world free of pollution with this clean energy producing turbine he left for humanity.
    Nuclear energy is not the answer.

    March 17, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  570. Lee Soper

    I have heard on TV that there are two different types of nuclear reactors, one is powered by FISION and the other by FUSION. One of them is completely safe, has absolutely no radioactive, toxic wastes at all. The other one is completely radioactive, has all sorts of toxic wastes which are leathal. I can't remember which was which, but I am asking you to find out which one is the SAFE ONE, and broadcast that to the world so they can switch to the one that is safe for mankind. I think if they knew which kind of reactor plant to install, it would save lives all over the place. Thank you.

    March 17, 2011 at 8:33 pm |
  571. jeff gray

    Nuclear power should only be used if a plant is designed with a reactor that can't have a meltdown as was the promise of the pebble bed reactor.

    March 17, 2011 at 9:09 pm |
  572. Jason

    Nuclear plants generate nuclear waste. The radioactivity in the nuclear waste coming out of these plants take THOUSANDS of years for their radioactivity to diminish. Even if we didn't have any of these nuclear crisis, if you look at this long term with nuclear power, not only would we have to waste more resources to manage all this nuclear waste that is being generated and keeps piling up, our planet will slowly be turned into a nuclear waste dump. Each piece of nuclear waste is another drop of poison to our planet and it will only come back to harm ourselves. Its time we say no to nuclear power and find smarter solutions to generating power all around the world. Solar, wind and hydro. Those are other means and our resources should be invested into those areas for advancements and not into how we can make nuclear power safer because we're already walking on the wrong side of the road by choosing to go with nuclear power.

    March 17, 2011 at 9:33 pm |
  573. Ric

    While nuclear fission will probably be needed for some time, I believe the worst flaw is how the builders of these plants can actually be rewarded for shoddy design. A badly designed fission plant will most likely run through it's useful life without a disaster, so the builder is essentially rewarded financially by cutting corners. They save money in the build and subsequent upgrades and reap more profit. This is why I favour fusion in the long term. A poorly built fusion reactor would actually punish the builder. If a builder cuts corners on a fusion reactor design, it would not run for very long, and likely not even start up at all.

    Nuclear fission is likely needed for at least part of the energy solution for some time, but only the latest and safest designs must be used when building new plants.

    March 17, 2011 at 9:49 pm |
  574. Mike

    Hey love your show;
    I myself truly believe that nuclear energy is the worst form of energy there is.
    It is coined as a clean energy source, only because you can't see what happens to the waste , another words no carbon dioxide spewing out the smokes stacks there for clean energy .
    This notion that is clean and safe is just not right thinking. Even after the fuel has been spent the half life or radioactive toxic problem will cary on for over 70,000 years and as high as 110,000 years . The amount of radioactive waste from hospitals and medical institutions is already a large problem where on earth to put it all, we can't just add an Industrial level of waste to this already precarious situation.
    That is just the waste issue ,THE MELTDOWN IS LITERALLY THE UNKNOWN?
    Can a Nuclear Reactor melt down into the earths corer ?

    March 17, 2011 at 11:04 pm |
  575. Barry

    Nuclear is obsolete and dangerous but will be the energy for now until we can figure out how to put a meter on cold fusion and keep every one
    dependent on the super power(big money).
    Cold fusion uses water and hydrogen and is very safe and very plentiful
    BUT the powers to be will not promote it because of GREED and POWER!!!. You can call me a nut but do the research and you will be amazed at what is out there.

    March 18, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  576. Droto

    Ask how many people have already died from the coal and oil industries, then talk about the POSSIBLE loss of life using Nukes.

    March 18, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  577. Gabriel Molieri

    Nuclear energy can be safe as long as decision making is kept away from Corporate profit-making frames of mind. This makes your question one that is asked a bit "too late" in the history of our nation.
    Although we have a great record of safety; we realy don't know if the Market paradigm would permeate decision making processes if critical situations were ever to arise. A close look at current problems in Japan will tell you how similar processes are suceptible to corruption and Corporate CYA and "negotiation" processes that can delay affirmative solutions until danger reaches critical proportions.

    March 18, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  578. Leo

    New nuclear power plants are much safer and more efficient than those built in the 1970's and before. What is happening in Japan, no matter how bad it gets, is because of a freak accident that could have been prevented with more careful planning. Nuclear power is the next big step towards an oil and gas free future. I live withing 50 miles of a nuclear plant and I feel safe.

    March 18, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
  579. Madailein

    It never was a good idea. It is hard to believe that people can't see that. Maybe after this serious nuclear incident in Japan, those that are in a position to make a difference in the world, along with the general public, will open up their eyes. There are so many safer and cleaner alternatives. Ali, I am sure you have received many intelligent, thoughtful responses. This is the dawning of a new way of doing things in the world.

    March 18, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  580. Barak

    What is remarkable is that all of the so called clean power sources, "nuclear"?, geo thermal, solar, wind, they all end their electricity generation cycle by pushing heated steam through a conventional steam turbine engine. I think there is ample evidence that nuclear is not a "clean" source of energy especially when nuclear plants are damaged and when atomic cores and spent fuel rods are exposed to our atmosphere and start emitting radioactive poisons into our air. And for anyone that calls nuclear plant time bombs safe and clean, I want all the hundreds of those people to live within 50 miles of a nuclear plant permanently and blog weekly reports of how they feel. They can provide a weak buffer for the rest of us.
    Ali, on your show, instead of comparing wind to nuclear or geo thermal to nuclear as you've done, how about taking all of the real clean tech energy sources, including all forms of solar energy, solar thermal utility scale, photovoltaic, rooftop solar installations, geo thermal, hydro electric, wind power, take all of those combined and then compare them to nuclear? That would be an interesting discussion to have on your show, especially now as we all wait to breethe radioactive air emissions from Japan here on the West Coast. Not just a comparision of clean vs. nuclear now, but run some what if scenarios, like what if the US DOE were to fund massive utility scale clean energies with the $34B that President Obama has comitted to fund nuclear plants. How long would it take for clean energy to catch and surpass nuclear? And how much capacity and money would it take to replace nuclear altogether? How many jobs would be created in clean tech industries? I'd really like to know what it takes to compare apples to apples.

    March 18, 2011 at 10:06 pm |
  581. Karen Harlow

    I've lived near Three Mile Island for years. It was touted as cheap energy but I never saw where it affected my electric costs because they just keep going up, up, up and away. Given the residual waste problems, I think we should invest more money in solar energy and wind farms. At least they dont have a danger of melting down or polluting the environment.

    March 21, 2011 at 7:00 am |
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    What happened tosolar energy, Say no to nuclear. Are the government staff so invested in both oil and nuclear that they really are searching their pocketbooks and not the wants of the people and our global welfare,

    April 7, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
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