Saturday, March 10, 2012

Nuclear Disaster in Japan Was Avoidable, Critics Contend

The political and economic system in Japan was set up by the US following WW II and shares many similarities with our capitalist model. In the US today, as in Japan, government agencies consider their constituencies to be industry rather than the public interest. We see this time and again, particularly in the nuclear industry where guidelines are often written by industry insiders to accommodate their business priorities and facilitate profits. This often comes at the expense of public safety concerns. This article presents a compelling example of how such collusion between government officials and industry can pose great risk to populations. The NRC in America just approved construction for a nuclear plant in Georgia without requiring safety provisions to protect against natural disasters. TEPCO and nuclear regulators in Japan ignored repeated warnings from engineers that Fukushima was vulnerable to tsunamis up to fifty feet high, making the nuclear disaster that ensued, in fact, preventable.

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