Posted by: Dr Churchill | October 10, 2012

Europe’s nuclear plants are disaster prone and nuclear bombs in waiting

Nuclear Energy plants across the world, have serious safety issues.

That much is known.

Yet in old Europe the situation is critical.

Because the nuclear plants aging fleet of Europe is increasingly prone to failure and catastrophic disasters that are not like anything we’ve seen before.

Nuclear disasters like Chernobyl could happen before anyone notices….

Earthquakes are frequent in some parts of Europe but tsunamis are comparatively rare… Yet the disaster in the making is very real, because the continent’s nuclear power plants are ill-equipped to cope with any of nature’s or man’s inimical efforts or climate forced weather extremes, such as floods, and other eventualities a new European Union report has revealed.

Commissioned in the wake of the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in Japan following the earthquake and resultant tsunami on the 11th of  March 2011, the investigation by the European Nuclear Safety Regulators Group used “stress tests” to assess the readiness of Europe’s reactors for similar events.

The results of the stress tests, speak FAIL for the whole nuclear industry of Europe.

It is so sad that out of 145 reactors checked, almost 90% of them and specifically a total of 121 European nuclear reactors had none or shockingly inadequate seismic protection. They had no back up power sources. No seismic instruments to detect earthquakes, and no cooling back up systems for the nuclear fuel ponds.  Fully 32 European nuclear plants lacked ventilation systems to prevent pressure build-ups in reactor vessels if the primary cooling system fails. It is so daft that to consider operating these reactors anew, there is no possibility. Yet because they are old — and much more vulnerable —  they are allowed to operate continuously unrelentingly causing the potential for another Chernobyl disaster.

Maybe it’s time to find out if one of these “nuclear bombs” in the making is operating close to your home or in your country and is the one offering power to warm up your tea kettle. Is it a safe form of energy for you and your family?

 

Maybe it’s time to ask the government to check on this…

Because thirty two of those 121 failure prone nuclear plants across Europe still operate without ventilation systems. This means that without these systems, reactors can explode and release radioactive pollution, as it happened in the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Further some 81 reactors of the 121, these eighty one nuclear plants did not have adequate equipment available for coping with severe accidents such as earthquakes or floods, and 24 didn’t have backup emergency control rooms.

Is the nuclear plant near your home one of those 81?

Yet in spite of these issues, the nuclear industry wants none of them to be shut down.

A bit of hubris mind you but these are the poor safety standards that are in force in every single nuclear power plant in Europe and are vastly inadequate…

Ask your government Ministers to do something about it….

Other, individual faults identified in the report range from a lack of alternative means of cooling to the need for fortified emergency centres on site. Operators in all countries, including the UK, have been asked to rectify all of the problems uncovered.

Each country has until the end of the year to produce a national action plan, and the European Commission will report on progress towards implementation in June 2014.

However with a new Nuclear Power plant building boom underway in South Eastern Europe especially in Bulgaria Romania and Turkey one needs to worry for a new Chernobyl maybe inside Turkey’s scheduled nuclear plants. And these new developments of nuclear energy are worrisome because the SE Europe and the Anatolian nation of Turkey are all much more fragile territories. Mainly because of geopolitics but also because of geology since the region is rocked with frequent and regular earthquakes and this along various political uncertainties, historical Balcanization forces and widespread terrorism — all render nuclear plants highly unsafe in this area.

And just looking at Iran’s efforts in building nuclear power plants becoming a clarion call for war should give us pause and allow us to reconsider the nuclear energy development in neighbouring volatile and increasingly islamic centric Turkey…

Yours,

Pano

Meanwhile, Japan’s nuclear power stations may be brought back online, if a regulatory agency deems them safe.

Following the Fukushima disaster, commercial reactors were shut down for safety inspections  and in order to deflect public anger, but now one of them has been restarted even though the country has decided to face out nuclear energy as a whole…


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