Almost one month to the day that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) released a Press release extending Three Mile Island’s license for 20 years, there has been another radiation leak at the facility. http://taxdollars.freedomblogging.com/files/2009/11/three-mile-island-renewal.pdf
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has renewed the operating license for the Three Mile Island Nuclear Station, Unit 1 (TMI-1), in Middletown, Pa., for an additional 20 years. The new license will expire on April 19, 2034. Via Associated Press, “A small amount of radiation has been detected in a reactor building at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant in central Pennsylvania. Officials say there is no public health risk.” http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jS9jFy7mB2i2XjBy3BDXHnvJG-7wD9C4M3SG0
A partial Meltdown of Three Mile Island’s Unit 2 reactor occurred in March 1979.
The NRC http://www.nrc.gov/ must be scratching it’s a$$ this weekend as there is no official press release from the agency. The Current Power Reactor Status Report for November 20, 2009 shows a big fat zero for producing energy at Three Mile Island at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/event-status/reactor-status/ps.html
From the NY Daily News, “Employees at the infamous plant were cutting pipes in a reactor building about 4 p.m. when a radiation alarm sounded, triggering the evacuation of 150 workers. The cause of the leak has not been found. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/2009/11/22/2009-11-22_three_mile_island.html#ixzz0XcSYPiRL The reactor building has been shut down for weeks while workers from Exelon — an energy company that operates Three Mile Island — overhauled steam generators and other equipment. Exelon Nuclear says that there was no contamination identified outside the reactor building. Surveys conducted outside the reactor building indicated a slight increase in radioactivity, but levels have since returned to normal, TMI officials report. Dauphin County and state EMA officials did not learn of the exposure until Middletown Mayor Robert Reid contacted the county’s 911 Center at 9:30pm, 5 1/2 hours after the radiation release. via http://www.nucpros.com/index.php?q=node/7486#comment-672 at member of the Profession Reactor Operator Society.
Did anyone bother to notify The White House? Has the news yet to reach Daniel B. Poneman, Deputy Secretary of Energy? http://www.energy.gov/organization/daniel_poneman.htm
For five and a half hours Exelon Nuclear didn’t tell anyone that there was a potential problem? While this case seems to indicate containment, what about the what if’s, had it not been contained? How does Excelon say that there was no contamination outside in one sentence and in the very next say that there was an increase in radioactivity outside, in the next?
In contrast to The Three Mile Accident on March 28, 1979… when the plant experienced a failure in the secondary, non‑nuclear section of the plant. They did not know that the core had melted, but they immediately took steps to try to gain control of the reactor and ensure adequate cooling to the core. The NRC=s regional office in King of Prussia, Pa., was notified at 7:45 a.m. on March 28. By 8:00, NRC Headquarters in Washington, D.C., was alerted and the NRC Operations Center in Bethesda, Md., was activated. The regional office promptly dispatched the first team of inspectors to the site and other agencies, such as the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency, also mobilized their response teams. Helicopters hired by TMI’s owner, General Public Utilities Nuclear, and the Department of Energy were sampling radioactivity in the atmosphere above the plant by midday. A team from the Brookhaven National Laboratory was also sent to assist in radiation monitoring. At 9:15 a.m., the White House was notified and at 11:00 a.m., all non‑essential personnel were ordered off the plant’s premises. http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/fact-sheets/3mile-isle.html
A dozen or so reactors are waiting for approval for new and existing Nuclear Energy Producing Facilities,at http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/new-reactors/new-licensing-files/expected-new-rx-applications.pdf with a hat tip to http://taxdollars.freedomblogging.com/2009/11/11/three-mile-islands-license-renewed-for-20-years/42493/ Incidentally, no new nuclear facilities have been built since the Three Mile Island mishap in the U.S.
After spending billions on Yucca Mountain, President Obama has derailed plans to open the facility to nuclear storage. http://www.ocrwm.doe.gov/repository/index.shtml Yucca sits on the Nellis Military Operations Area in Nevada approximately 80 miles northwest of the Las Vegas metropolitan area. Maybe the government made a deal with the aliens of Area 51 for storage instead.
Whatever the future of the facility, President Obama continues on the global warming train to nowhere, saying in his speech on Nuclear Weapons in Prague:
“To protect our planet, now is the time to change the way that we use energy,” he said to applause. ” Together, we must confront climate change by ending the world’s dependence on fossil fuels, by tapping the power of new sources of energy like the wind and sun, and calling upon all nations to do their part. And I pledge to you that in this global effort, the United States is now ready to lead….“We should build a new framework for civil nuclear cooperation, including an international fuel bank, so that countries can access peaceful power without increasing the risks of proliferation. That must be the right of every nation that renounces nuclear weapons, especially developing countries embarking on peaceful programs…. We must harness the power of nuclear energy on behalf of our efforts to combat climate change, and to advance peace opportunity for all people.” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/04/05/obama-prague-speech-on-nu_n_183219.html President Obama wants more nuclear plants, less nuclear weapons and offers no place to store the waste. He wants to close Gitmo and offers no place to store that human waste either.
Three Mile Island wasn’t the only nuclear facility having incidents reports this week. http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/event-status/event/2009/20091120en.html. November 18, 2009, the RSO (Radiation Safety Officer) of Terracon Consulting Inc. (ARK-0820-03121) reported the theft of a Troxler 3440 Moisture Density gauge (SN#27140) from a construction site at the Two Pines landfill in Jacksonville, Arkansas. The gauge contained an 9 mCi Cesium-137 source and a 44 mCi Americium-241/Beryllium source. The category 3 radioactive material gauge was found along a roadside.
Did we learn nothing from Chernobyl?
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