Thursday, September 26, 2013

Former NNSA Deputy Administrator Blasts UT-Austin Nuclear Power Plant Security Study

Jerry Paul
Earlier this week, Jerry Paul, a former deputy administrator at the National Nuclear Security Administration, took aim at a study that came out of UT-Austin in August concerning nuclear power plant security.

The following passage comes from an op-ed that appeared in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
These are dangerous times. Nuclear security is a serious topic. It calls for assessment by serious people willing to do the hard work of real research.

There is nothing wrong with an academician or anyone else, including political activists, raising questions about public topics including security and even nuclear security. But it should be done in a responsible way and should be based on facts.

If conclusions are to be marketed as university “research,” they should be backed by credible data, authoritative sources’ expertise and peer reviews by unbiased experts.

Merely using the word “nuclear” in a title should not qualify written work for a lower standard of academic or journalistic scrutiny.
Previously, NEI issued a statement critiquing the study, noting many of the same point. NEI's John Keeley wrote a blog post of his own on the day of the report's release:
[A] report like the NPPP's today also fails to acknowledge that the very type of terrorist attack alleged as a vulnerability necessarily represents an enemy of the state incursion within our country. It isn't the obligation of any electric utility to defend against that; that's a job for the highest levels of federal national security.
For more on plant security, please consult NEI's website.

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