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Left wing <> global warming?

  1. May 14, 2007 #1
    When even a left winger is attacking global warming, is this the sign of the inevitable political earthquake approaching rapidly?

    http://counterpunch.com/cockburn05122007.html
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 14, 2007 #2
    Sparing resources is a left-wing attitude. Just like repentence.
    Spoiling resources is the right attitude of any selfish people. That's the right thing to do.
     
  4. May 14, 2007 #3

    Astronuc

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    I don't understand where Cockburn came up with this. AFAIK, the uranium mining companies are mining companies, not oil companies, although some companies like BHP Billiton do have a petroleum business. So that covers the suppliers of raw material for the uranium. The enrichment business is not owned by oil companies. The suppliers of steels and zirconium alloys are metals processors - not oil companies. The companies that supply the technology and manufacture fuel, e.g. AREVA, Toshiba/Westinghouse, GNF, Mitsubishi, ENUSA, . . . are not oil companies. The utilities that operate nuclear power plants are in the electrical generation business - not the oil business.

    Cockburn is correct that the nuclear industry is touting the fact that they do not generate greenhouse gases. Nevermind the slight matter of spent fuel accumulating in the US with no apparent place to go at the moment. :rolleyes:
     
  5. May 14, 2007 #4
    I thought the same thing. But last week I met a retired nuclear physicist at a pub meeting. He had worked for the Canadian Atomic Energy Commission where his specialty (I think) was modelling of long term corrosion processes with regard to spent fuel storage. He said that spent fuel storage is only a political problem, that it's not hard to do it safely. According to him, the real safety problems are mining, transportation and terrorism.
     
  6. May 14, 2007 #5
    Whether or not global warming is happening is not dependent on politics.
    The concept was first brought to the public eye by scientists.
     
  7. May 14, 2007 #6

    Astronuc

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    Yes it is a political problem - and right now US utilities have to accumulate spent fuel in the spent fuel pool, which were designed in the days when there was a plan to recycle/reprocess, or in dry storage, which was not planned and resulted in additional operating expenses for utilities.

    Mining and transportation have always been safety issues, and now we have terrorism to deal with.

    This is true. The matter is one of identify the 'real' cause and with that knowledge, developing a 'workable' or 'valid' solution to the problem. So in a sense, developing a solution to GW is a political problem.

    We seem to be on a trend of setting record temperatures in our area. Will it continue? I don't know, but the extremes in weather are playing havoc with the agriculture business.
     
  8. May 14, 2007 #7
    Would it be economically feasable to reprocess spent fuel rods in the USA.??
    If it works for France , why not do it here?? I did notice in the link that they have pulled their virtual tour of the plant due to security reasons.

    http://www.chemcases.com/nuclear/nc-13.htm
     
  9. May 14, 2007 #8

    Ivan Seeking

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    The problem is that the nuclear industry and the government lost the trust of the American people. And for good reason! Even now, my wife Tsu suffers from a variety of complications due to thyroid failure that may well result from releases of radioactive materials from Hanford.

    http://www.doh.wa.gov/Hanford/publications/overview/overview.html

    In a day and age when our leaders openly defy the people and the Constitution, I'm not inclined to cut loose with the nukes again.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2007
  10. May 14, 2007 #9
    We have been having what only can be described as strange weather patterns here. In February we had a record warm 90+ degree day. Two weeks later we had a record cold 15 degree night.

    Last summer in the middle of the Southwestern drought and a weak monsoon, a low pressure area moved in from the west (not typical for summer here) it bought us heavy rain in the early morning hours also not typical.

    During the Early morning hours of the third day the stalled storm dropped 4 inches of rain on the mountains surrounding Tucson. One popular recreation area, Sabino Canyon, was washed out entirely. When geologist got into the canyon they stated that this had been the largest flow of water and debris through the canyon in the last 40,000 years.
     
  11. May 14, 2007 #10

    Astronuc

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    Edward, we've had similarly weird weather patterns, but the trends seems decidely warmer with more record or unseasonably warm days than cold. On the other hand, we just has a cool night - near 37°F (and there were frost warnings in some places!). We had a Canadian high pressure system drop in on us yesterday, and we went from excess precipitation to dry (fire hazard) conditions.

    However, we are seeing bird and animal species that have traditionally been associated with the warmer climates of the Virginia and further south.

    Reprocessing in Europe is subsidized by the governments directly or indirectly. As far as I know, it is much more costly to reprocess fuel than make it from scratch, because of the remote handling required with radioactive materials. On the other hand, the utilities are having to spend money to purchase dry storage systems - some of which will be covered by rebates on the taxes charged by the Feds on nuclear plants.

    Ivan has a good point, but the radiation exposure from Hanford, and more likely from the surface or near surface testing of nuclear weapons at the Nevada testsite. The government exempted itself (and granted itself immunity for the consequences) from the health and safety requirements imposed on the commerical nuclear industry, which included not only radiation exposure and contamination, but also chemical pollution. Now the government has spent $10 billions to clean up the messes around the DOE complex.
     
  12. May 14, 2007 #11

    russ_watters

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    Assuming the concerns about Hanford are valid (there are 33,000 cases of thyroid cancer a year, so it would be tough to attribute any to Hanford), it still doesn't have anything to do with nuclear power: Hanford wasn't a power plant or support facility, it was a nuclear weapons production plant.

    The fact of the matter is that no one not connected to the production of nuclear power has ever died from it in the US. That's something that can't be said for our primary source of power (coal), yet somehow people accept this drawback of coal and oil while not accepting a virtually nonexistent risk of nuclear power. It doesn't make any sense.

    Linking nuclear power and nuclear wepons is an old hippie trick that people need to stop believing in.

    And the government certainly isn't trustworthy, but again, that has nothing to do with nuclear power. We need electricity from something and given the choices available, nuclear power is by far the best. My not trusting the government isn't helping me get out of Social Security...
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2007
  13. May 15, 2007 #12
    :rofl: LOL Counterpunch, the ****real**** socialists...
     
  14. May 15, 2007 #13
    i don't think this guy's opinions on criminal sentencing, abortion, health care or economics makes him any more qualified debate the validity of global warming theories
     
  15. May 16, 2007 #14
    DU isn't supposed to cause cancer, but there was an interesting spike and sustain rate of childhood cancers in Iraq following GW1. The dismantling of rocky mountain flats here in Colorado has been a cruel joke. I had a Gf working there during the decomission and rehab, and there were several over the top leaks that were never reported. I just don't get your POV, that on one hand the govt cannot be trusted with regard to fiscal policy and all the rest, yet you seem to place great faith in govt generated statistics that are perhabs dubious, and at least tainted by self interest. I recall the original downwinder case in southern utah where thyroid cancer skyrocketed and the govt said, no connection with above earth nuclear tests, If so why did we go underground completely?
     
  16. May 16, 2007 #15

    russ_watters

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    Even if I believe that, what does that have to do with nuclear power?
    What does that have to do with nuclear power?

    You are falling for the same lie that Ivan is. Nuclear power and nuclear weapons are not inexorably intertwined. The hippies did their job well and now we're all paying the price (literally and figuratively).
    I can't comment on anecdotal evidence.
    You miss the point, denverdoc. The government can't be, yet must be trusted with both.

    We have all the information we need to make informed judgements about these things. Yes we need to keep an eye (and a leash) on the government. But that doesn't have anything to do with the fact that nuclear power is by far the safest, cleanest possible source of large-scale energy. The government does mismanage Social Security, but it still needs to be done. The government does screw up when it comes to regulating the energy industry, but we still need electricity and we have a responsibility to use the best source available for us, our children, and our environment. To make decisions based on irrelevant and often just plain wrong information is irresponsible and it is killing people.

    Again, air pollution kills fifteen thousand people a year in the US. Nuclear power has killed none. (that's people not connected with it's production) I don't understand how you guys can ignore these facts in favor of unrelated fears.

    And by the way - those unrelated fears, even if they were relevant, are still orders of magnitude below the problem you guys keep ignoring. Thyroid cancer kills fifteen hundred people per year in the US. What fraction of those are due to radiation, I don't know, but I do know that most of the increase in recent years (how much of that increase is real and how much is due to improved detection is difficult to know) is due to immigration from Russia, not from American sources: http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/20/n...tml?ex=1179460800&en=431c0bdfef8632ac&ei=5070
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2007
  17. May 16, 2007 #16
    you may be right in many respects, and I deplore the current crusade vs smoking and the blame on smoking parents that the huge rise in asthma and allergies is secondary to second hand smoke. That's another huge myth perpetrated by the gov't. My only suspicion that the current or future admins will turn this about face. They will become reactionary over current nuke safeguards just as they have with water and air pollutants, make a case as in the 50's where its patriotic to support nuclear energy, and lastly make sure that the current fossil fuel merchants have a chance to catch up . Call me a cynic,
    J
     
  18. May 16, 2007 #17

    Art

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    Are you suggesting the linear hypothesis is wrong!
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2007
  19. May 16, 2007 #18
    I think the momentum is decidedly in the other direction.

    http://www.grist.org/news/maindish/2007/05/16/murdoch/index.html?source=daily

    Without Newscorp there are scant few media platforms left for the skeptics. Like I said before, all the arguments are old news, nothing new. And the one thing that is right wing news producers fear more than a liberal bias is old news.
     
  20. May 17, 2007 #19

    Tsu

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    :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
     
  21. May 18, 2007 #20

    Ivan Seeking

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    Are you going to show me where I said that or apologize for misrepresenting my position as you usually do?
     
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