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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 8/2/19

40 Ways Ohio Now Proposes Nuclear Suicide

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The Perry Nuclear Power plant outside of Cleveland.
The Perry Nuclear Power plant outside of Cleveland.
(Image by (photo: FirstEnergy))
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A bought, gerrymandered Ohio Legislature has just handed a much-hated $150 million/year public bailout to two dinosaur nuke reactors primed to explode.

It also bails out two filthy 50-year-old coal burners and guts programs for increased efficiency.

But a possible repeal referendum could reverse all that and have a serious impact on the Trumpsters who pushed it in the 2020 election.

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Here are some basics:

  • The 42-year-old Davis-Besse reactor near Toledo and 33-year-old Perry, east of Cleveland, are both dangerously crumbling.

  • Neither can compete with wind, solar, gas, or increased efficiency.

  • Both would shut immediately in a free market environment.

  • Like all nuke reactors, both emit substantial quantities of heat, radiation, and carbon.

  • Both threaten the entire North Coast and Great Lakes region with a radioactive apocalypse.

  • Neither can get private disaster insurance.

  • Their owner, FirstEnergy (FE) of Akron, is bankrupt.

  • The utility stands to gain some $150,000,000/year at the expense of ALL Ohio electric consumers, not just those in its territory.

  • FE's top seven execs are paid roughly $25,000,000/year; CEO Chuck Jones gets $9,500,000.

  • In 2003, FE blacked out 50,000,000 people.

  • Davis-Besse's infamous 2002 "hole-in-the-head" came when boric acid ate nearly all the way through the reactor pressure vessel.

  • In 1986 (as the Challenger blew up), Perry became the first US reactor to be damaged by an earthquake; a 4.0 shock recently hit less than 25 miles away.

  • A state-mandated 1986-1987 study showed northern Ohio cannot be evacuated in case of a meltdown ... and certainly not amidst an earthquake.

  • Ohio's North Coast is flat, blown by constant lake-based winds, and crisscrossed with transmission lines and good turbine sites near the cities to be served.

  • Local farmers are desperate for the income the turbines would provide.

  • $4.2 billion in private capital is poised to pour into the region for wind farms that would create thousands of jobs and lower electric rates.

  • Turbines in Lake Erie, plus land-based wind and solar farms, enhanced by batteries and efficiency, can provide all of Ohio's electricity far more cheaply than nukes and/or fossil fuels while creating far more jobs.

  • But in 2014, with zero basis in health or environmental protection, FE's bought legislators put into the Ohio Code a setback clause that has killed wind development in the state.

  • Ohio now has far less installed wind capacity than neighboring Indiana, Michigan, New York, or Pennsylvania, which have comparable wind resources but no such setback clause.

  • Ohio is a national leader in manufacturing wind turbine components, virtually none of which are deployed in Ohio.

  • Perry & DB have been repeatedly bailed out dating back at least to 1999, when FE scammed a $9 billion "stranded cost" give-away.

  • It was called a "stranded cost" bailout because FE complained even then that reactors could not compete in an open market.

  • This latest bailout was directly pushed by Trump, at least one of whose co-conspirators personally lobbied key legislators for it.

  • Ohio is roughly 50/50 Republican/Democrat, but the GOP has heavily gerrymandered majorities in both houses of the Legislature.

  • In 2018, FE targeted a dozen GOP legislative primaries, buying at least 11 bailout votes.

  • This latest bailout bill could not have passed without votes from key corporate Democrats.

  • A strong statewide grass-roots movement arose to oppose the bailout.

  • An overwhelming majority of testifiers before the Legislature were opposed.

  • A strong majority of the state's newspapers were also opposed.

  • All were ignored by Democrats and Republicans alike.

  • Efforts are now underway to put a referendum on the fall 2020 ballot.

  • If filed within 90 days, the bailout will be put on hold until the vote.

  • Polls show that a strong majority of Ohioans oppose the bailout.

  • If the bailout is on the 2020 ballot, it could encourage a strong opposition turnout that could hurt Trump and help tip the election in a key swing state.

  • But Trump, FE, and the nuke industry will spend unlimited millions to defeat it.

  • It's been widely known since at least 2004 that Ohio's registration rolls and voting procedures are heavily rigged to favor the GOP and its corporate owners.

  • The longer Perry and Davis-Besse operate, the higher the odds they'll obliterate Toledo, Cleveland, and the entire Great Lakes region.

  • Neither has private disaster insurance.

  • FE can't handle its radioactive wastes, evacuate the region when disaster strikes, or credibly maintain the reactors in their current (deteriorating) state.

Should the referendum get on the ballot, it could help take down Trump and save the region from an apocalyptic catastrophe, as well as economic ruin. Should it fail, the odds on a major nuclear catastrophe along the shores of Lake Erie are too high to contemplate.

The stakes could not be higher.

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Harvey is a lifelong activist who speaks, writes and organizes widely on energy, the environment, election protection, social justice, grass-roots politics and natural healing, personal and planetary.He hosts "California Solartopia" at KPFK-Pacifica and "Green Power & Wellness" atprn.fm. (more...)
 

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David Watts

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A little foresight might have been in order before building nuclear power plants that can melt down and also produce nuclear waste that is deadly for -- I have seen this figure -- 250,000 years. There are some smart humans, but as a whole, humans ain't very smart. They do like money though.

This is a comment I left on another article a couple of days ago:

There are about 450 nuclear reactors worldwide. A quick check informs me decommissioning a plant takes about 60 years and costs hundreds of millions of dollars.

"As of 2017, most nuclear plants operating in the United States were designed for a life of about 30-40 years and are licensed to operate for 40 years by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The average age of these reactors is 32 years. Many plants are coming to the end of their licensing period and if their licenses are not renewed, they must go through a decontamination and decommissioning process."

As global heating eats up human habitat quickly around the world and civilization disintegrates, nuclear plants will be left behind to melt down. With 450 of them sitting around as "time bombs," it is time to plan a trip to Andromeda; a nice galaxy I am sure.

Btw, the term "China Syndrome" has always bothered me. I mean, what do they call it in China, the "What-goes-around-comes-around America Syndrome?"

Submitted on Friday, Aug 2, 2019 at 7:30:30 PM

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they call it the china syndrome because it sounds better than the indonesia syndrome.


440 slow-motion A-bombs is now way to cool the planet. not sure our species really is gonna make it.

Submitted on Friday, Aug 2, 2019 at 8:12:36 PM

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You are right. Indonesia Syndrome ain't as catchy as China Syndrome.

Submitted on Tuesday, Aug 6, 2019 at 5:56:33 PM

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They call it "China Syndrome", because when a reactor melts, it is believed nothing will stop it from burning it's way directly thru the earth to emerge in China on the other side of the planet. Does that help explain things ?

Submitted on Sunday, Aug 4, 2019 at 3:51:27 AM

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Thanks, but I did know that. I was just joking about it being called "China syndrome." A meltdown in China wouldn't burn its way all the way through to ... China.

Submitted on Monday, Aug 5, 2019 at 12:39:49 AM

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SHUT THEM ALL DOWN!!! NOW!!!!

Submitted on Monday, Aug 5, 2019 at 4:51:53 PM

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Japan has Reopened Multiple-damaged dangerous, reactors and done nothing to stop the radioactive hemorraghe into the seas. Japan is going ahead full steam with the 2020 Radioactive Cesium 137 olympic games in Tokyo and Fukushima and Trumpo the Clown, Trump endorses them Trump has made nuclear war many times more probable. Fuko has lobbied to make american taxpayers pay, to keep, some of the most meltdown prone reactors in the world open in Ohio . Trump has gutted regulation of reactors. Gutted the hardening of some of the most earthquake, hurricane, and flood vulnerable reactors in the world. The Diablo canyon reactor is probably damaged the two earthquakes. The Bay City reactor's fuel pool is damaged from Harvey. When it floods and burns it will realease the radionuclide fallout, equivalent of 50,000 Nuclear Bombs. The Weatherford reactors, in Louisina were damaged from flooding and hurricane Berry. Same for the Duke Energy Reacor in North Carolina that was damaged by Hurricane Florence. One of the old reactors in Ohio that Trump demanded and virtually forced to stay opened, has a hole in its containment from a nuclear accident years ago. Trump and its cronies are completely deregugulating the supervion and oversight of the 97 embrittled, cracked, dangerous, old nuclear reactors and busy. extending their licenses The Fort Calhoun Reactor was inundated by the unprecedented flooding in the midwest and south this year. Other reactors were too. It has been flooding like this, every year in the south for 8 yeara years, where there are multiple reactors. Many people in America are climate deniers. Human Monkeys are a race of cowards! Dominated by psychopathic Mass murderers and Sadists. Cowardly monkeys, that have no determination to save their children. No value to save their world. They wallow in the trappings of crass materialism and enable the deranged sadism, torture and psychopathic insanity of the Sick Plutocrats. The devils have destroyed, most things left of virtue and beauty in the world.There will be a nuclear disaster in America soon. It is assured. It is assured by the chaotic-narcissism and hate that governs America and the neo-liberal authoritarian, kakicracies, now. It will happen soon in america. The nuclear disaster, will be covered-up. Another disaster will follow. The catastrophe will occur in the next 2-3 years or sooner. The illness will precipitate a societal breakdown, as is occuring in Ukraine. The decline and collapse will occur much more precipitously in America. America is in the the grip of a gross-simmering health crisis, from radionuclide pollution, that already exists.The monsterously irresponsible, Plutocratic-Kakiocracies in the west and, places like India or Korea will follow . Their Nuclear Death machines will explode from stupidity, aging and negligence. The nuclear cataclysms and climate change are insuring the demise of the human monkeys in 5-8 years.

Submitted on Friday, Aug 2, 2019 at 11:09:26 PM

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There is a simmering nuclear poisoning, of the world going on. The radionuclide pollution, began destabilizing the human genome almost three generations ago. It normally takes ten generations to destroy a species , when all of the species has mutated germ-lines. Destructive mutations play out to mass birth defects and infertility That may play out on a mondo planet scale soon from fossil fuel exraction, burning and nuclear power plant explosions and nuclear waste fires. The radionuclides are poisoning the life support system, by pushing the oceans past the tipping point. The radionuclide pollution is disabling large swaths of populations, in highly competitive-unsustainable, growth dependent , capitalist societies .Their answer is to push and expand , fossil fuel based growth which entails radionuclide based pollution harder and faster.

Submitted on Friday, Aug 2, 2019 at 11:19:36 PM

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ed...thanks for these../you are 100% right. nuke reactors burning at 300 degrees centigrade & periodically exploding constitute the number one threat to the future of humankind. we MUST shut them asap.


no nukes!!!

Submitted on Sunday, Aug 4, 2019 at 7:29:16 AM

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inl fire A wildfire burned 90,000 acres around the Idaho National Atomic Laboratory July 25, 2019. There were other wildfires in the area. The Idaho National Laboratory Nuclear Reservation, is 900 square miles. Almost a million acres. The fire burned, all the way to reactor buildings, on the nuclear reservation. Many muclear reactors have been tested there. click here "Various organizations have built more than 50 reactors at what is commonly called "the Site", including the ones that gave the world its first usable amount of electricity from nuclear power and the power plant for the world's first nuclear submarine. Although many are now decommissioned, these facilities are the largest concentration of reactors in the world." INL History". Idaho National Laboratory. United States Department of Energy, DOE Office of Nuclear Energy. Archived from the original on February 23, 2014. There are massive amounts of Radionuclidea on the million acre INL Resevation. There were 2 known meltdowns of Nuclear Reactors at INL and, maybe more The meltdown at the Stationary Low-Power Reactor Number One (SL-1) in south-central Idaho is to date the only fatal meltdown in U.S. history. The SL-1 before it blew up. The nuclear reactor is in the cylindrical structure. Nuclear Meltdown in Idaho: 3 occured in the late fifties resources.gale.com/gettingtogreenr/uncateg There are and have been 50 nuclear Reactors at INL Reservation. There are incredible amounts of nuclear waste stored and buried there. A lot of that waste went up in smoke with 70 years of nuclear reactor meltdown fallout, from more than 90 thouasand acres burning and, you are breathing it America!

Submitted on Friday, Aug 2, 2019 at 11:29:57 PM

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shut them all down!!! now!!!

note that immediately after ohio passed the nuke bailout deal, perry got scrammed & FE filed to break their union contract.

Submitted on Tuesday, Aug 6, 2019 at 6:35:44 PM

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