Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Opportunity for Reform

White House Declines to Renominate Member (2014, June 23) The Wall Street Journal, A4.

“George Apostolakis, first nominated by President Barack Obama in 2010, will leave the NRC on June 30 when his term ends….  [Mr Apostolakis] has publicly stated he would like to continue as a commissioner”

Apparently he was notified this week that he will not be re-nominated despite his desire to remain on the commission.

I don’t know much about George Apostolakis. I sure find his PP presentation on risk assessment to be full of flawed assumptions (here http://www.nrc.gov/about-nrc/organization/commission/comm-george-apostolakis/apostolakis-06-23-2014-psam12.pdf)

For example, one flawed assumption in his model is that we cannot extrapolate future accidents from past accident rates because after every accident major safety changes are instituted.

Of course this claim is garbage for many reasons:

1.       Most safety reforms are cosmetic and do not address the fundamental problem of residual heat and explosive gas production in quick shutdowns

2.       Most reactors today are aging and are increasingly at risk of structural failure, as illustrated by the damage at San Onofre Nuclear power plant

3.       The practices of burning fuel at hotter temperatures and running MOX increase accident likelihood, especially in aging reactors

I’ll stop there because I’m tired and want to go to bed.

So, I’d say I’m rather pleased that George wasn’t asked back. 

Perhaps the Obama Administration would like to invite someone who really understand the risks of nuclear reactors to serve on the NRC?


  1. We are at a cross roads now. The days when the "great" dictators could kill millions and nature just absorbed the bodies and went on are over. Either the world awakens to the proliferation of poisonings that are occurring and stops them, or we are probably finished as a planet with much life. Somewhere I just read that some new poison will be used now to kill the weeds resistant to Ready Roundup! This is all pretty crazy. Why worry about climate change when we as a species are now killing ourselves in a rather permanent way, And this will accelerate. Persons with the lust for killing can not control themselves . . . and do not care about future generations. I can of course imagine ingesting a drug which effected me such that thoughts of harming people were no longer repugnant and disturbing, It would neutralize the empathetic area of the brain. So that must be it; a natural disconnect from empathy. We had better not wait in hope for these persons to have a conversion experience as they may not even have that potential.


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