Thursday, January 24, 2008
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
United States Navy has had nuclear incidents
I wish to take issue with Rep. Gene Taylor's assertion that the United States Navy has, in the words of The Mississippi Press' Jan. 18 editorial, "been using nuclear power for decades without incident." In making this statement, both Rep. Taylor and The Mississippi Press are in error. The actual list of "incidents" includes:
1. In 1961, the USS Theodore Roosevelt was contaminated when radioactive waste from its demineralization system blew back onto the ship after an attempt to dispose of the material at sea.
2. On Dec. 12, 1971, approximately 500 gallons of radioactive coolant water was spilled into the Thames River near New London, Conn., during a transfer from the submarine USS Dace to the submarine tender USS Fulton.
3. In 1975, the nuclear-powered submarine USS Guardfish was contaminated with radioactive waste from its reactor coolant water system during disposal at sea.
4. Sometime during October to November of 1975, the submarine tender USS Proteus discharged radioactive coolant water into Apra Harbor, Guam, contaminating two of the harbor's public beaches with radiation 50 times the allowable dose.
5. On May 22, 1978, the nuclear-powered submarine USS Puffer mistakenly released up to 500 gallons of radioactive water near Puget Sound, Washington.
This list does not include the losses of the nuclear-powered submarines USS Thresher and USS Scorpion. While their losses were unrelated to nuclear propulsion, their reactors are still sitting on the ocean floor, making it a matter of time before radioactive material is released. This list also doesn't include accidents involving nuclear weapons or incidents at shore-based facilities.
Finally, Rep. Taylor's assertion does not take into account the U. S. Navy's policy of not releasing information on incidents involving nuclear power. For example, OPNAVINST 3040.5B instructs naval commanders they "may not need to contact all the relevant authorities" if an incident occurs in a foreign port. This is in direct contradiction to the U. S. government's "Standard statement on the operation of U.S. nuclear powered warships in foreign ports" which states, "the appropriate authorities of the host government will be notified immediately in the event of an accident involving the reactor of the warship, during a port visit." In other words, knowledge of any "incidents" may not be in the public domain.
It is true that the U. S. Navy has operated nuclear-powered vessels for over 50 years (beginning with the USS Nautilus in 1954) without a reactor meltdown or a catastrophic release of radioactive material. This is due in large part to the design of their reactors and the rigorous training of their personnel. It is also a wise strategy to legislate the next generation of surface combatants be nuclear-powered to reduce our navy's vulnerability to disruptions in the oil supply. But it is misleading at best to declare U.S. naval operations involving nuclear power have been without incident.
Rep. Taylor should know better than to make such a statement and The Mississippi Press should know better than to repeat it without verification.
Sunday, January 20, 2008
OH MY GOD, what is Sherwood prattling on about now you might ask? Allegation NSIR-2007-A-0013 (RI-2007-A-0134)
Over the course of this past year, I have enlightened the NRC about certain PROBLEMS within the industry, and at Entergy's FAILING Indian Point facility...such as, and as example the reactor vessel integrity test that Entergy figured out a way to cheat on. Another thing I brought to the attention of the NRC was the fact that EPRI's cache of documents that are supposed to be well guarded are not. Granted, I disagree with documents paid for in part by our taxes being kept from us, but that being said, still feel that certain documents should not be as readily accessible to the public as pornography is, but such is the case with literally 1,000's of EPRI documents, and the NRC seems bent on ignoring this reality, or too stupid to do a proper investigation.
The NRC on December 13th sent me off a letter basically dismissing a bunch of my allegations due to lack of evidence...more appropriately, they dismissed them because they are A) lazy, B) stupid, or C) covering up known industry mistakes, or D) a combination of all of the above. In their letter, they explained to me that they had taken a look at EPRI's PUBLIC WEBSITE, and come to the determination that there was nothing there of any interest, nothing there that citizens (or terrorists from other countries) should not be allowed to see...never mind that their visit to the public sight completely MISSED what my complaint was about.
Resisting the urge to simply call the investigators a bunch of anal retentive MORONS, on December 27th, 2007 I gave the NRC a courtesy call, letting them know they had missed the boat, were wrong in their conclusions, and again stated to them that their were large caches of EPRI documents that anyone with a brain (which leaves most NRC employees out of the loop apparently)could easily locate and download from the internet. I even gave them a thumbnail view of how it could be done, and suggested that they revisit their conclusion.
Well, today I got a letter back from one Gregory C. Cwalina, Senior Allegation Cordinator, in which he again gets it ALL WRONG, but not surprisingly DEFENDS the NRC investigators findings, stating again that they visited EPRI's PUBLIC SIGHT, and found nothing amiss. So, I will now tell Gregory C Cwalina, the entire Allegation department, and the NRC itself...you folks are a bunch of MORONS. You do not NEED a password to access private sections of the EPRI site, DO NOT NEED a PASSWORD to go in and download sensitive documents that are clearly marked they should not be made available for export, and you do not need to go through the EPRI normal access portals and protocols to look at, see, view and download said documents, and any averagely intelligent person with any creativity, and the ability to conduct a GOOGLE search can find and read these documents.
First, the concert...SOME BASIC FACTS:
1. The concert in Nyack was to have been a FUSE USA fund raising event. In fact and deed, Ulrich Witte himself has to admit to the truth of this. He banked his decision to come to work for FUSE USA on our ability to bring this fund raising event home as it were.
2. Both Pete Seeger and Ani DiFranco were committed to the event LONG BEFORE SUSAN SHAPIRO left FUSE USA.
In short, no matter how Susan Shapiro, Maureen Ritter and Michel Lee might like to portray events that occured between October 15th and November 7th when they all resigned from the board of FUSE USA, one thing is certain. Friday nights concert was, and may still be (legally in a court of law) a FUSE USA fund raising benefit, but there is a real good chance that issue will be decided by attorneys, or perhaps by judges and/or a jury at some future date and time. For now, we merely point out, that the event was arranged as a FUSE USA event, and in fact and deed, Ulrich Witte, unless he is willing to perjure himself, knows that Susan Shapiro confirmed to both he and I via emial that Ani DiFranco had agreed to perform for the FUSE USA fund raiser. In fact, he told me personally on the phone the day we got the news, that his fiancee (former?) was a HUGE FAN of her's, and would probably buy 15 tickets herself for the event.
Was it the intention all along for Sherwood Martinelli's talents to be harvested to benefit the Close Indian Point movement, then cast him aside as being to controversial. Was Susan Shapiro being cagey from the onset with Sherwood, was the fund raising event designed from the onset in such a fashion that she could steal away when she and the rest of her crew BOLTED FUSE USA? If not, how was it then that she was able to move everything so quickly into her name, and basically CUT FUSE USA out of the process? As the old saying goes, enquiring minds want to know. This subject, where Sherwood Martinelli stood in the process while he dedicated thousands of hours of his time to the movement is worthy of a LONG ARTICLE that is being written, and will soon be published on this blog...here is one thing to peak your interest.