“Nuclear Goldilocks”

At the US Senate hearings in January, we heard the whining voices of nuclear power corporations speaking through a majority of the Senators on the NRC oversight committee. Their mantra is that the industry is over-regulated.  In 2012, industry pressured the NRC into a study of the cumulative effect of regulations. On March 13, David Lochbaum of the Union of Concerned Scientists presented a paper on an NRC panel on the topic. His paper is entitled “Nuclear Goldilocks:” regulation should be “neither too harsh nor too lax, but just right.” But between its generic, cookie cutter approach to individual reactors and cost-benefit analysis, NRC rules end up protecting owners  — not the public.

As a result, “Nearly half of the reactors in the U.S. have never complied with the NRC’s fire protection regulations. Nearly a third of the reactors in the U.S. may not be properly protected against flooding should an upstream dam fail. Nearly a quarter of the reactors in the U.S. may not be properly protected against damage caused by an earthquake.13  But the NRC assesses each of these and numerous other afflictions in isolation and fails to evaluate their cumulative effect. It is simply impossible to connect-the-dots to see the entire picture by focusing on a single dot.”

Contact Congress and tell them to remind the NRC that its job is to protect the public, not the corporations. We want clear and tough regulations. There is no cost-benefit analysis for public safety. Click here for contact info.

You can download and readDavid Lochbaum’s “Nuclear Goldilocks” paper here.

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