Safety

…the possibility, however remote it may be, of human error, systems failure, sabotage, earthquake and terrorist attacks leading to the release of radioactive matter in the public domain, cannot be entirely ruled out.

 

Guidelines on Management of Nuclear and Radiological Emergencies

National Disaster Management Authority

Govt of India

All nuclear power plants are inherently dangerous.  They are vulnerable to any combination of natural disaster, human error or design failure.  In India, institutional faults make that risk a little bit greater.  Yet these dangers are routinely and emphatically downplayed by the nuclear establishment.

There’s a myth propagated that nuclear power has become safer in recent years.  It’s now toted as the answer to climate change – an “environmentally-friendly” option that guides us away from the looming crisis of peak oil.  The truth is that even a significant increase in nuclear power would only lead to a negligible CO2 reduction 1, and that nuclear reactors are no safer than they were in the 20th Century.  If anything, as they become more powerful, the possible consequences of an accident become even more terrible.

Mistakes do happen.  The nuclear sector is replete with chilling stories of incidents, accidents and near misses.  There’s a story or more for every day of the year - all 365 of them.2 Accidents happened before Chernobyl.  They happened after Chernobyl.  Only the explanations and excuses get tailored anew each time.  The industry is known to have manipulated safety and inspection data, in certain cases, in order to avoid costly repairs and lengthy shutdowns.3 The secrecy that blankets the Indian nuclear power sector shields it further.

Yet even under normal operations nuclear power plants regularly discharge radioactive materials into the air and water.  Nuclear waste, the deadly by-product of nuclear power for which there is no real long-term solution, remains radioactive for generations.

Proponents of nuclear power want it discussed and evaluated on the same factors as other methods of power generation.   This can only be done if the risk factor is set aside altogether as being irrelevant, if the horrific, long-lasting consequences of an accident on huge populations is considered an acceptable price to pay. At Greenpeace, we don’t think it is.

Alternative power sources exist, such as solar, wind or micro-hydro energy.  They can be combined with energy efficiency to deliver India’s electricity needs, fast.  They won’t exacerbate climate change like fossil fuels, and nor do they leave a radioactive legacy or carry the unacceptable risk of a radiological accident, like nuclear energy.  India needs to stop gambling with the health of our children and our land by investing in nuclear power.



Sources
1 Energy Technology Perspectives 2010, IEA/OECD, June 2010
2 http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/publications/reports/nuclearaccidentscalendar/
3 “Complacency, negligence threaten nuclear industry, WANO warns". Nucleonics Week, vol. 44/ Issue 42, Oct. 16,2003

The latest updates

 

Crocodile in Bhitarkanika

Image | March 2, 2005 at 4:30

Crocodile in Bhitarkanika

monsanto! imagine!

Image | March 2, 2005 at 4:30

monsanto! imagine!

Save the dugong - stop the airbase

Feature story | March 1, 2005 at 4:30

OKINAWA, Japan — "It is 8:30 am and I and 30 activists have been sitting on drilling platform #4 for an hour and a half. We can see workers from the Defense Construction Agency gathering on the beach of Camp Schwab, the US Marine Corp base at...

Genetic Engineering - FAQs

Publication | February 27, 2005 at 4:30

What is Genetic Engineering?

Mahyco - A Profile

Publication | February 27, 2005 at 4:30

Maharashtra Hybrid Seeds Co. Ltd. also known as Mahyco is India's largest private sector seed company. Since its inception it has been engaged in plant genetic research and production of hybrid seed.

The regulatory mechanism for GMOs in India

Publication | February 27, 2005 at 4:30

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) are regulated in India under the Indian Environment (Protection) Act of 1986 (EPA). The objective of the EPA is the protection and improvement of the environment, which calls for regulation of "environmental...

Monsanto

Publication | February 27, 2005 at 4:30

Monsanto a global polluter Monsanto is the leading company responsible for contaminating the environment with genetically engineered (GE) crops. Its products accounted for over 90% of the total area planted with GE crops in the world in 2001.

Say No to Genetic Engineering

Image | February 27, 2005 at 4:30

Say No to Genetic Engineering

Harry Potter saves ancient forests?

Feature story | February 24, 2005 at 4:30

LONDON, United Kingdom — Harry Potter, boy wizard extraordinaire, survived an attack from the most evil wizard of all time. He has outwitted the terrifying Death Eaters. He has turned invisible - much to the annoyance of his teachers. He is a...

1711 - 1720 of 2131 results.