Nuke power's collapse gets ever more dangerous
[link to www.freepress.org
The disintegration of America's decrepit atomic reactor fleet is fast approaching critical mass.
All 104 licensed US reactors were designed before 1975---a third of a century ago. All but one went on line in the 1980s or earlier.
Structural problems, made ever-more dangerous by slashed maintenance budgets.
Units One and Two, near major earthquake faults on the coast between Los Angeles and San Diego, have been shut for more than nine months by core breakdowns in their newly refurbished steam generators. A fix could exceed a half-billion dollars. A bitter public battle now rages over shutting them both.
The containment dome at North Florida's Crystal River
was seriously damaged during "repair" efforts that could take $2 billion to correct. It will probably never reopen.
NRC inspections of Nebraska's Fort Calhoun,
damaged during recent flooding, have unearthed a wide range of structural problems that could shut it forever, and that may have been illegally covered-up.
has structural containment cracks that should have forced it down years ago and others have been found at South Carolina's V.C. Summer
reactor pressure vessel.
Intense public pressure at Vermont Yankee
, at two reactors at New York's Indian Point
, and at New Jersey's Oyster Creek
(damaged in Hurricane Sandy) could bring them all down.