Are People Who Are Opposed To Nuclear Power Also Opposed To Science – I always try to be fair

First this person loads this article with oblique invective. Not all liberals are opposed to nuclear power. In fact he never even defines what a liberal IS. Second, he bases his arguement on health issues while dismissing the costs of the power stations and the displacement of that cost to investments in renewable sources of energy with no evidence to support those dismissals. Then there is the issue of waste storage which proved so decisive in the Fukushima accident – eg. causing the most destruction and the most danger. From a larger perspective, we have our own nuclear fusion plant going on with the Sun, and we got back up in the Moon causing the tides. We don’t need no stinking nuclear power.

Are Anti-Nuke Liberals Science Deniers?

Posted: 04/ 5/11 03:37 PM ET


David Ropeik

David Ropeik

Author, “How Risky Is It, Really?”

The first glimmers of hope begin to shine from the nuclear crisis in Japan, but they will do little to brighten the views of some about nuclear power. As the disaster at Fukushima has shown, nuclear certainly has risks, as do all forms of energy. But the disaster has also reminded us that it’s really hard to get people to change their minds about a risk, once those minds have been made up. And close-mindedness isn’t the brightest, or safest, way to make the healthiest possible choices about how to stay safe.

As a TV reporter in Boston I covered several nuclear power controversies. Seabrook. Pilgrim. Yankee Rowe. These were great stories… lead stories… because they involved possible public exposure to nuclear radiation, and everybody knows that’s really dangerous. My stories were full of ominous drama and alarm. But when I joined the Harvard School of Public Health and researched nuclear power for a chapter in a book, RISK, A Practical Guide for Deciding What’s Really Safe and What’s Really Dangerous in the World Around You, I was ashamed to learn how uninformed and misleading my alarmism had been. Ionizing radiation is indeed a carcinogen. But it’s not nearly as potent as most people fear.

94,000 survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki have been followed for 66 years by epidemiologists from around the world and, compared to normal cancer rates in Japan, only about 500 of those survivors have died because of the radiation. About two thirds of one percent. The radiation also caused birth defects in children born to women pregnant when they were exposed, but no long term genetic damage. These findings are widely accepted in the scientific community. Governments around the world base their radiation regulations on them.


Go there and read. More tomorrow.


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