Expert warns against nuclear future


Risks poorly weighed: "I do not believe Australia has given adequate consideration to the risks we give to our neighbours when we sell them our uranium," he said. "Or the risks we leave for our own kids."

Radioactive residue a long term concern: The more we export, the more pressure we will be under to store the resultant radioactive waste. Be in no doubt, the boomerang will come back.

A nuclear accident is no easy fix: An accident at a nuclear reactor is not akin to a fire in a warehouse. And accidents do happen. Twenty years on, people still debate the death toll from the Chernobyl disaster. What isn’t in dispute is the social impact of the, explosion at a civilian nuclear power plant. About 220,000 people from Belarus, the Russian Federation and the Ukraine were permanently relocated.

Chernobyl "just" a 10 per cent disaster: Henry visited Chernobyl in 2003. "I was shocked to learn the carnage caused by the explosion came from just 10 per cent of the reactor’s radioactivity; 90 per cent remains inside the flimsy sarcophagus."

Chernobyl tale of woe still not finished: Of course, the accident site is a complete no-go zone for humans. The authorities send in robots to "hose down" hot spots and lessen the chances of a chain reaction. No accident at any other type of electricity generating plant has ever left such a mark.

Reference: Dr Don Henry is the executive director of the Australian Conservation Foundation.

The Canberra Times, 4/4/2006, p. 11

Source: Erisk Net  

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