Kaku too extreme on Nuclear Waste

  • #1
I have to say I agree 100% with the thrust of Kaku's argument that Element 92 is generally just a bad thing for humanity and we do not need and should not use it - especially now at this stage in our development. However his arguments that nuclear waste which is contained in the mountain in Nevada is a serious threat because in 10,000 years there might be another flood in that region is simply outlandish especially for someone of his level of vision.

If we destroy our civilisation, then maybe it will be a problem - but we will be screwed anyway

If we are not destroyed and continue to develop, then obiously in just 100 years or so we will have vastly supeior technology - hopefully space elevators and things like this - and we really could lift it up relatively safely and send it off right into the sun.

Again - I greatly fear nuclear technology - but the threat it poses to us diminishes with increasing levels of technology and social development.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
20
0
I agree with the last part of your post. Worrying about waste 10,000 years in the future is incredibly naive. It will likely be removed in less than 50 years for recycling. By which time recycling technology will hopefully have been allowed to develop further. It was always intended to be a part of the nuclear cycle but rabied anti-technologists pressured the US administration into banning it. Thereby escalating the cost of nuclear plants and allowing filthy disgusting coal plants to outcompete them. Now one in four children have asthma thanks to atmospheric coal dust shortening our lifespans. Thanks a lot GreenPeace!
 
  • #3
Head Banger Science

http://www.citizen.org/hot_issues/issue.cfm?ID=735

Feb. 2, 2004

Bush’s Proposal to Inflate Yucca Mountain Budget Is Irresponsible


Congress Should Not Boost Budget for Nuclear Waste Dump While Legal Challenges and Key Safety Issues Remain Unresolved


WASHINGTON, D.C. – President Bush’s proposal to boost the budget for the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump to $880 million and change how the project is funded is irresponsible given the pending legal challenges against the project and unresolved questions about the site’s safety, Public Citizen said today.

In the 2005 budget released today, Bush allocated much of the additional funding – a 50 percent increase from 2004 – to develop and operate the transportation system for shipments to Yucca Mountain. The budget calls for the purchase of truck and rail casks and other equipment for waste shipments in 2010.

"The idea of buying equipment for transporting waste to Yucca Mountain before questions about the safety of the site are resolved, and before the routes and mode of transport are even determined, is ludicrous," said Wenonah Hauter, director of Public Citizen’s Critical Mass Energy and Environment Program. "The Department of Energy (DOE) is obviously trying to sink so much money into this hole in the ground that the project becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy."

One of the most alarming proposals in the administration’s Yucca Mountain budget is the elimination of congressional oversight of much of the project’s funding. Since 1982, nuclear power utility consumers have paid fees to the Nuclear Waste Fund to pay for the establishment of a national repository for high-level nuclear waste. Bush proposes that these fees be paid directly to the DOE, thereby cutting Congress out of decisions regarding how the fees are used.

"This is just a budgeting gimmick that artificially reduces federal spending and hides the real costs to consumers and taxpayers," said Hauter.

Contained in the budget was the DOE’s annual programmatic assessment of the Yucca Mountain project. The agency rated the project "adequate" despite the many fundamental questions that remain unresolved regarding the suitability of the site to safely and permanently isolate high-level radioactive waste. Not only is the site located over a drinking water aquifer, but it is in an earthquake zone.

The DOE has been working since September 2001 to answer 293 scientific questions, or key technical issues, that revolve around Yucca Mountain’s ability to keep radiation from contaminating the surrounding environment. So far, answers to 83 questions have been completed and accepted by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). In a December 2003 letter, the NRC informed the DOE that it could not evaluate many of the answers that the DOE had submitted because the DOE had not supplied all the necessary technical documents.

"Due to the doubts and uncertainties plaguing the Yucca Mountain project, Congress should not increase its budget or change the funding practices," said Hauter. "It appears that the Bush administration is steamrolling scientific concerns to ram this project through."

Recent developments point to the need to rein in funding for the project. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia is deciding a slate of lawsuits against the project. One key case against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) charges that the EPA’s standards setting the amount of radiation that can be released are not consistent with recommendations of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), as Congress directed in the 1992 Energy Policy Act. The EPA rule arbitrarily limits the period for which Yucca Mountain must comply with radiation release rules at 10,000 years, even though the NAS has found that the maximum doses from the dump are likely to occur for 300,000 years.

The DOE intends to submit its license application for the high-level waste dump to the NRC at the end of 2004. The court’s decisions on these cases, which are expected this spring, could force a significant reassessment of Yucca Mountain that would necessarily take years and perhaps even permanently derail the project.

###
 
  • #4
Burying Nuclear Waste Will Not Work

Radioactive environmental contamination IS the paramount issue
of our times. Unless we stop the nuclear Juggernaut the future of
life on earth is bleak indeed. There IS 'off the shelf' science which
will denature and forever eliminate high level nuclear waste, plutonium
and so-called 'dirty bomb' elements. http://members.cox.net/theroyprocess
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Yucca Mountain could leak nuclear waste, says scientist

Thursday, February 19, 2004
By Scott Sonner, Associated Press

http://www.enn.com/news/2004-02-19/s_13273.asp [Broken]

RENO, Nevada — The U.S. nuclear waste dump proposed for
Nevada is poorly designed and could leak highly radioactive
waste, said a scientist who recently resigned from a federal
panel of experts on Yucca Mountain. Paul Craig, a physicist
and engineering professor at the University of
California-Davis, said Wednesday that he quit the panel last
month so he could speak more freely about the waste dump's
dangers.

Yucca Mountain, about 90 miles (145 kilometers) northwest of
Las Vegas, is planned to begin receiving waste in 2010. Some
77,000 tons of highly radioactive waste at commercial and
military sites in 39 states would be stored in metal
canisters underground in tunnels.

"The science is very clear," said Craig before his first
public speech about the Energy Department's design for the
canisters. "If we get high-temperature liquids, the metal
would corrode and that would eventually lead to leakage of
nuclear waste," Craig said. "Therefore, it is a bad design.
And that is very, very bad news for the Department of Energy
because they are committed to that design," he said.

Craig, who was appointed to the Nuclear Waste Technical
Review Board by President Bill Clinton in 1997, planned to
speak Wednesday night at a forum sponsored by the Sierra
Club. He said he's convinced the Energy Department will have
to postpone the project and change to metal less liable to
corrode.

"It would require years of delay and my guess is that is
what is going to happen. The bad science is so clear they
will be unable to ignore it forever," Craig said.

The 11-member technical review board outlined its concerns
about the potential for corrosion in a report to the Energy
Department in November about the metal for the canisters,
called Alloy-22 — "an upscale version of stainless steel,"
Craig said. It was the most important report the board has
produced since Congress created the panel in 1987, he said,
but largely has been ignored by Congress and the department.

"The report says in ordinary English that under the
conditions proposed by the Department of Energy, the
canisters will leak," Craig said. "It was signed by every
single member of the board so there would be no confusion."

Energy Department spokesman Allen Benson defended the design
plans for the repository and the metal in the storage casks.
"We stand by our work," he said Wednesday in Las Vegas.

In Washington, D.C., officials with the industry's Nuclear
Energy Institute did not immediately return telephone calls
seeking comment. The board's report in November said the
government had failed to take into account "deliquescence" —
a phenomenon regarding the reaction of salt to moisture — in
its plans to operate the dump at temperatures well above
boiling water, or about 200 degrees Fahrenheit (93 degrees
Celsius). At those temperatures, the metal canisters would
heat up, causing salts in the surrounding ground to liquefy,
thus leading to corrosion, Craig said.

"It turns out the metals which look like they act pretty
good at temperature levels below boiling water — those same
metals act badly with temperatures that could exist" at
Yucca Mountain, he said.

Craig, who also has served as a member of National Academy
of Sciences National Research Council Board on Radioactive
Waste Management, said he sent his resignation letter to the
White House in January before his term was to expire in
April so he could shine more light on the government's plans.

"When you serve as a member of one of those boards, you
cannot talk about the political consequences of the science
or the big picture. You are supposed to stick to the science
and you should stick to the science," Craig said. "You
cannot have the kind of conversation we are having now if I
was still on the board."

--


Posted for educational and research purposes only,
~ in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 ~
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #5
russ_watters
Mentor
19,948
6,439
Hmm, so if a pro-nuclear project is expensive, thats a reason to cancel it, but if an anti-nuclear (non-nuclear) project is expensive, thats ok? Two what?
 
  • #6
Good Science--Bad Science

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/02/18/science/18CND-RESE.html

Scientists Accuse White House of Distorting Facts

By JAMES GLANZ
Published: February 18, 2004
NY TIMES

The Bush administration has deliberately and
systematically distorted scientific fact in the
service of policy goals on the environment,
health, biomedical research and nuclear weaponry
at home and abroad, a group of about 60
influential scientists, including 20 Nobel
laureates, said in a statement issued today.

The sweeping charges were later discussed in a
conference call with some of the scientists that
was organized by the Union of Concerned
Scientists, an independent organization that
focuses on technical issues and has often taken
stands at odds with administration policy. The
organization also issued a 37-page report today
that it said detailed the accusations.

Together, the two documents accuse the
administration of repeatedly censoring and
suppressing reports by its own scientists,
stacking advisory committees with unqualified
political appointees, disbanding government panels
that provide unwanted advice, and refusing to seek
any independent scientific expertise in some
cases.

"Other administrations have, on occasion, engaged
in such practices, but not so systematically nor
on so wide a front," the statement from the
scientists said, adding that they believed the
administration had "misrepresented scientific
knowledge and misled the public about the
implications of its policies."

A White House spokesman, Scott McClellan, said
today he had not seen the text of the scientists'
accusations. "But I can assure you that this is an
administration that makes decisions based on the
best available science," he said.

Dr. Kurt Gottfried, an emeritus professor of
physics at Cornell University who signed the
statement and spoke in the conference call, said
the administration had "engaged in practices that
are in conflict with the spirit of science and the
scientific method." Dr. Gottfried asserted that
what he called "the cavalier attitude toward
science" could place at risk the basis for the
nation's long-term prosperity, health and military
prowess.

The scientists denied that they had political
motives in releasing the documents as the 2004
presidential race began to take shape, with Howard
Dean dropping out a day after Senator John Kerry
narrowly defeated Senator John Edwards on the
Wisconsin Democratic primary. The organization's
report, Dr. Gottfried said, had taken a year to
prepare - much longer than originally planned -
and had been released as soon as it was ready.

"I don't see it as a partisan issue at all," said
Russell Train, who served as administrator of the
Environmental Protection Agency under Presidents
Richard M. Nixon and Gerald R. Ford, and who spoke
in the conference call in support of the
statement. "If it becomes that way I think it's
because the White House chooses to make it a
partisan issue," Mr. Train said.




* See also: NucNews Links and Archives (by date) at http://nucnews.net * (Posted for educational and research purposes only, in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107) *
 
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  • #7
Deplete Uranium Weapons Report

http://www.unobserver.com/index.php?pagina=layout4.php&id=1487&blz=1


GOVERNMENT DU-PLICITY
By Susan Riordon & Davey Garland

Great liars are also great magicians" - Adolf Hitler.

IT IS appropriate to quote from someone so despicable,
about those who have created a despicable act, and
have lied and covered up their crimes for over 12
years. The wall of silence or dis-information over
Depleted Uranium held by the US and UK government has
been near impregnable. But cracks have now emerged, be
it from veterans, or scientists, over a decade of
collating, researching and painstaking “digging” by
activists and academics which may rock or even ruin
some government Ministers and officials. The last
months have seen a number of incidents which has seen
the tight DU ship of lies spring a number of leaks.

It hit choppy waters first at the World Uranium
Weapons Conference held in Hamburg in October, 2003,
at which the global DU movement came together
pro-actively for the first time, with activists,
veterans, scientists and lawyers agreeing on solid,
cohesive means of action. The Conference called for
the abolition of all uranium weapons and confirmed
acceptance of the United Nations Sub-commission on the
Promotion and Protection of Human Rights finding, that
Depleted Uranium weapons are illegal. Accordingly, the
Hamburg officially called for the abolition of the use
of and halt to the proliferation of these weapons.

more on URL
 
  • #8
pervect
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Insights Author
9,908
1,090
theroyprocess said:
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/02/18/science/18CND-RESE.html

Scientists Accuse White House of Distorting Facts
Repeat after me

"Bush was misled by his advisors. Bush was misled by his advisors"

now try

"I am Elmer J Fudd, millionaire. I own a mansion, and a yacht".
"I am Elmer J Fudd, millionaire. I own a mansion, and a yacht".

:devil:
 
  • #9
4
0
pervect said:
Repeat after me

"Bush was misled by his advisors. Bush was misled by his advisors"

now try

"I am Elmer J Fudd, millionaire. I own a mansion, and a yacht".
"I am Elmer J Fudd, millionaire. I own a mansion, and a yacht".

:devil:

I wish that was the case......and if it was someone should have been fired
 
  • #10
JLawrenceIV said:
I have to say I agree 100% with the thrust of Kaku's argument that Element 92 is generally just a bad thing for humanity and we do not need and should not use it - especially now at this stage in our development. However his arguments that nuclear waste which is contained in the mountain in Nevada is a serious threat because in 10,000 years there might be another flood in that region is simply outlandish especially for someone of his level of vision.

If we destroy our civilisation, then maybe it will be a problem - but we will be screwed anyway

If we are not destroyed and continue to develop, then obiously in just 100 years or so we will have vastly supeior technology - hopefully space elevators and things like this - and we really could lift it up relatively safely and send it off right into the sun.

Again - I greatly fear nuclear technology - but the threat it poses to us diminishes with increasing levels of technology and social development.
the answer is Thorium based nuclear reactions.
 

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