Skip to main content

U.S. Nuclear Plants Act on Verifying Safety in Emergencies

The nuclear energy industry continues to be concerned about what is going on in Japan and has offered both technical and humanitarian support.

Even as the crisis unfolds in Japan, all nuclear power plants in the United States are taking action NOW to verify their ability to remain safe -- during and after the most severe events, such as the loss of significant operational and safety systems due to natural events, fires, airplane crashes and explosions.

The industry is verifying that its nuclear facilities can withstand a total loss of electric power and will function even after extreme events. The industry also is reexamining the plants’ capability to withstand flooding and the possible effects of floods on systems inside and outside the plant. Nuclear power plant owners will incorporate lessons learned from the events in Japan as they emerge.

American nuclear energy plants are designed to successfully meet a range of significant physical challenges and keep the surrounding communities safe. Moreover, since 9/11, the U.S. electric industry has done even more to increase its ability to maintain safety during the most severe scenarios. All of America’s nuclear power plants have undergone comprehensive reviews by site-specific teams that include the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Energy and Federal Bureau of Investigation.

American reactors continue to operate safely and will continue to play a vital role in providing electricity.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Making Clouds for a Living

Donell Banks works at Southern Nuclear’s Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 as a shift supervisor in Operations, but is in the process of transitioning to his newly appointed role as the daily work controls manager. He has been in the nuclear energy industry for about 11 years.

I love what I do because I have the unique opportunity to help shape the direction and influence the culture for the future of nuclear power in the United States. Every single day presents a new challenge, but I wouldn't have it any other way. As a shift supervisor, I was primarily responsible for managing the development of procedures and programs to support operation of the first new nuclear units in the United States in more than 30 years. As the daily work controls manager, I will be responsible for oversight of the execution and scheduling of daily work to ensure organizational readiness to operate the new units.

I envision a nuclear energy industry that leverages the technology of today to improve efficiency…

Why America Needs the MOX Facility

If Isaiah had been a nuclear engineer, he’d have loved this project. And the Trump Administration should too, despite the proposal to eliminate it in the FY 2018 budget.

The project is a massive factory near Aiken, S.C., that will take plutonium from the government’s arsenal and turn it into fuel for civilian power reactors. The plutonium, made by the United States during the Cold War in a competition with the Soviet Union, is now surplus, and the United States and the Russian Federation jointly agreed to reduce their stocks, to reduce the chance of its use in weapons. Over two thousand construction workers, technicians and engineers are at work to enable the transformation.

Carrying Isaiah’s “swords into plowshares” vision into the nuclear field did not originate with plutonium. In 1993, the United States and Russia began a 20-year program to take weapons-grade uranium out of the Russian inventory, dilute it to levels appropriate for civilian power plants, and then use it to produce…

Nuclear: Energy for All Political Seasons

The electoral college will soon confirm a surprise election result, Donald Trump. However, in the electricity world, there are fewer surprises – physics and economics will continue to apply, and Republicans and Democrats are going to find a lot to like about nuclear energy over the next four years.

In a Trump administration, the carbon conversation is going to be less prominent. But the nuclear value proposition is still there. We bring steady jobs to rural areas, including in the Rust Belt, which put Donald Trump in office. Nuclear plants keep the surrounding communities vibrant.

We hold down electricity costs for the whole economy. We provide energy diversity, reducing the risk of disruption. We are a critical part of America’s industrial infrastructure, and the importance of infrastructure is something that President-Elect Trump has stressed.

One of our infrastructure challenges is natural gas pipelines, which have gotten more congested as extremely low gas prices have pulled m…