Interesting look at lithium batteries vs. nuclear power…

From Substack-

For decades, critics of nuclear power plants have pointed to their unique danger. When there is a loss of water coolant for the reactor cores, plant operators can lose control, leaving them to melt, and potentially spew toxic particulate matter into the environment. Nuclear accidents are unique in requiring people to “shelter-in-place,” and close windows and vents, to avoid breathing radiant particulate matter. And nuclear accidents can unfold in unpredictable and mysterious ways, such as by creating hydrogen gas explosions, like the kinds that occurred during the Fukushima nuclear accident in 2011.

Full article, HERE from Michael Shellenberger

Nuclear has always been the left’s boogeyman, going back to the nuclear stalemate and the paranoia over nuclear power plants ‘melting down’…

Mr. Shellenberger does a good job of pointing out the fallacies on both sides, and the fact that lithium batteries are actually more dangerous. We had them on our birds, and had to be able to get rid of them ‘quickly’ if they started outgassing. And these were little batteries!

Yet in Belgium, in the midst of a true energy crisis, they are shutting down at least one, if not two nuclear reactors because… Government regulations… HERE.

Sigh… what happened to common sense???


Interesting look at lithium batteries vs. nuclear power… — 27 Comments

  1. Anyone caught exhibiting common sense and pushing for decisions to be made based in logic is immediately declared a racist and white supremacist. It’s not important that it is proveable, and the it doesn’t even matter if the White Supremacist is in fact, black.

  2. It’s almost like the Powers That Be don’t want people to have plentiful and inexpensive energy or something.

  3. OldNFO…I remember the days of adding Kevlar gloves as a pre-flight mission brief checklist item. Fortunately we never needed them.

  4. Well, maybe.
    I once called in to a radio talk show and asked the Nuclear expert
    “How long is the waste from a nuclear generator dangerous to humans?”
    He sidestepped my question and answered one he wanted to answer.
    (I think the answer is in the hundreds of thousands of years unless I’m mistaken.)
    And storing that waste is another tremendous bugaboo.

    • It’s a stupid question. How long is a gun dangerous to humans? How long is a fall off of a cliff dangerous? Or playing in traffic? Gasoline? Arsenic? A steak knife?

      I don’t blame him for avoiding your question, because you were playing ‘gotcha’ and you weren’t being honest or upfront. You were looking to be hysterical.

      How long is waste from a nuclear power plant dangerous to humans? As long as you’re an idiot with it – that’s how long.
      We had a plan to store the stuff, until the democrats and the anti-nuclear left came along and destroyed that plan.

      They didn’t destroy it to make people safe or less dangerous, they did it because they wanted to continue to be able to make people afraid and keep them living in fear. They wanted to be able to say ‘look at all this nuclear waste we can’t get rid of’. Even though we CAN get rid of it, safely, they just won’t let us to that.

      FAR more people die from natural gas explosions than die from nuclear power. How many times have you seen a house blow up (often killing the occupants) because of natural gas? Hundreds, if not thousands, die of this every year. But I don’t see anybody running around and saying ‘we need to turn off natural gas to people’s homes!’
      How many people are electrocuted every year? Tens of thousands!
      But where is the rush to shut off all the power?

      Again, it’s a stupid question. Nuclear power is safe. If you’re not an idiot with it.

      • What was the plan for storing the waste that was so good?

        • I think that it is / was the Yucca Mountain nuke waste disposal site built in Nevada. Nevada and the anti nuke groups (see above) have been fighting its use for 30+ years, so that the high level waste can sit on the surface and be a threat in place.

        • We should be reprocessing our ‘spent’ fuel rods. There is still a lot of good usable energy in them.
          Current rules are like tossing your charcoal because the outer layer is gray.

          • I’ve wondered why they were called Spent
            If they were supposedly still so dangerous

      • “But I don’t see anybody running around and saying ‘we need to turn off natural gas to people’s homes!’”

        It seems you missed the CA statement that they intend to force all homes with gas appliances to switch to electricity in a few years from now. A few years back, PG&E screwed up and destroyed a residential area with a gas leak, so CA decided that this would be a good excuse to force people to all move to a deliberately unreliable energy source for home use. People in CA are really stupid, and haven’t noticed that the CA .gov is working on eliminating internal combustion vehicles and forcing them to switch to EV’s and all electric homes (and probably businesses), while removing CA located electrical generation of all types, while also not increasing the distribution system to handle all that intended increased power that will be sourced from outside CA.

    • The answer to your question depends on a lot of factors, but once high level waste is glassified and encapsulated it is only a direct risk for a few years. Once the high-level radioactive elements decay the remaining hazard is nothing special. If we could use the Yucca Mountain facility the waste would be stored in caverns far above the local water table to eliminate that remote risk in the future.

      Arsenic in coal ash, metallic lead, mercury, etc. are all permanently toxic with no decay, but we deal with those hazards quite well.

  5. The Soviets happened. All of the anti-nuke people were funded by the Soviets, all of them. They knew that destroying our energy generation capacities would destroy our culture and our country. A culture can ONLY be successful if it can generate more energy than it needs – a lot more. Your level of society is irrevocably tied to your ability to generate power. You can not have a high level of civilization with out it.
    That’s why the ‘green’ movement are all ‘watermelons’. They’re all commies because they were founded, bought and paid for, by commies.

  6. “only roughly 200 people will have their lives shortened by the fire and radiation from the Chernobyl fire”
    Um, what about the bunch of on-scene personnel that died from radiation exposure? Weren’t their lives shortened to a matter of days or weeks?

    “Nobody has ever died of nuclear power in the United States”
    Three military operators died at the Argonne Low Power Reactor. Technically, it was the steam explosion from the meltdown that killed them, not the radiation exposure.

    I have four 40Ah LiFePo batteries for SHTF solar use. I’m sure their plastic cases will fully contain the intense conflagration if one or more decides to commit suicide (insert eyeroll emoji). Sigh. I’d rather have four nuclear reactors.

    • According to the IAEA and other scientific sites, 31 people died either in the initial explosion, or within a few weeks of the explosion from thermal burns and/or acute radiation exposure. Thyroid cancers were anticipated in other people exposed to the ash and debris, because the Soviets did not iodize salt and so the body took up the easiest source, but preventative treatment with iodine supplements took care of that. Some other cancers were also reported later, but how many of those were radiation related vs. chronic heavy metal exposure or other factors remained undetermined, as of the last time I looked (2019 or so).

      A family member was involved in the post-Chernobyl medical situation in Belarus and Ukraine for several years, and went over there multiple times. Dosimeters used during those trips showed nothing beyond the EU average background radiation.

      *shrug* I don’t have data on Fukushima, since no one I know was involved in the post-tsunami study and remediation.

      • OK, correction t=on the thyroid cancers. I’m also seeing numbers as high as 20,000 children developing thyroid cancers blamed on exposure to Chernobyl’s fall-out in both the immediate days after the explosion, and through secondary exposure via milk from cows that ate fallout products. That number doesn’t match other data I’ve seen. However that number is from 2017, and may be more recent, improved tracking.

    • The 3 military deaths I’m aware of were at the SL-1 test site in Idaho. We learned all about it when I was there for Navy Nuclear power training in 1976. The reactor design was flawed in that pulling only one control rod could take it critical. The full story is publicly available now but needless to say no modern reactor is built to the same design.

  7. All- Keep it civil please. There are always three sides to any ‘argument’, plaintiff, defense, and the truth…

  8. Hey Old NFO;

    John is correct, the Environmental movement got their seed money from the Soviets, they were watermelons, and when the Soviet union collapsed, all the apologist for the Soviets glommed onto the Environmental movement, it is all economic Marxism couched in “saving the Planet”. Nuclear is still the best option along with natural gas for powering our energy needs.

  9. People are especially misinformed when it comes to understanding the intensity of radiation and half-life. They hear “This material has a half-life of a million years” and they’re afraid it will be deadly for a million years. No, it’s the short half life stuff that will kill you, because it’s giving off all of its radiation as fast as possible. It’s a blowtorch compared to a glow-in-the-dark sticker. When it comes to (whatever the measurement is for radiation dosages, not Curies), for what a gram of Cobalt-60 will dose you, would take about a ton of Uranium.

    • The Curie is the measure of radioactivity (3.7×10^10 decays per second) and is a good way to compare. One gram of pure Co60 (half-life 1925 days) is 1,132 curies of activity, but it takes 463kg of U235 (half-life 7×10^8 years) to get a single curie.

      Originally a curie was defined as the activity of 1 gram of pure Ra226

  10. Nuclear power is like aviation. Extremely beneficial, technically complex and TOTALLY unforgiving of any mistakes.

  11. I’m late to the party but I would just like to point out that since the Navy commissioned the USS Nautilus (SSN-571) in 1954, they have commissioned and operated over 200 nuclear submarines since then without any major mishap.

  12. Roy- Point! And a damned good one. And many of the ‘commercial’ nuclear plants are staffed by Navy trained operators, including my cousin!