Skip to main content

The Simpsons and The Reality of Nuclear Power Plant Security

It looks like the folks at Fox are pulling out all of the stops when it comes to Sunday night's season premiere of The Simpsons. Look for guest voice appearances from Kristen Wiig of Saturday Night Live and Mad Men's Elizabeth Moss in the 25th season premiere entitled, "Homerland," a spoof of the hit cable drama, Homeland. In Sunday night's episode, terrorists brainwash Homer in an attempt to, you guessed it, blow up the Springfield nuclear power plant:



With the laughs out of the way (and when it comes to The Simpsons, believe us, we do laugh) I'd like to take advantage of this teachable moment and remind everyone that America's nuclear power plants are among the most secure and best defended industrial facilities in the world. So after you've spent 30 minutes laughing with Homer and company, why not just spare 6 minutes to watch this video that outlines the realities of nuclear plant security.



For more on nuclear power plant security, please visit our website. And congratulations to the team at The Simpsons for 25 seasons on Fox. It's an amazing achievement.

Comments

jimwg said…
I know I sound off the cuff, but one of the many reasons the Simpsons is so successful is because so many people believe antis posterboy Homer's job isn't that far from reality. Will they EVER do an episode making even a token quip of sincerity that nukes are safe? I wouldn't hold my breath. Where's the counter Home stuff out there??

James Greenidge
Queens NY



Atomikrabbit said…
I think I saw Lenny and Carl in that Hope Creek segment.
Russ Finley said…
Matt Groening is the right age to have been imprinted by pre-internet anti-nuclear rhetoric. Imprinting at a younger age determines a lot of things, religion, political leaning, preferred music, dialect, clothing, for the rest of your life.
Russ Finley said…
...the first several seasons of the Simpsons were great. I can't sit through an episode anymore... Not sure Groening is really actively involved at this point.
Anonymous said…
The first video is out.

Popular posts from this blog

How Nanomaterials Can Make Nuclear Reactors Safer and More Efficient

The following is a guest post from Matt Wald, senior communications advisor at NEI. Follow Matt on Twitter at @MattLWald.

From the batteries in our cell phones to the clothes on our backs, "nanomaterials" that are designed molecule by molecule are working their way into our economy and our lives. Now there’s some promising work on new materials for nuclear reactors.

Reactors are a tough environment. The sub atomic particles that sustain the chain reaction, neutrons, are great for splitting additional uranium atoms, but not all of them hit a uranium atom; some of them end up in various metal components of the reactor. The metal is usually a crystalline structure, meaning it is as orderly as a ladder or a sheet of graph paper, but the neutrons rearrange the atoms, leaving some infinitesimal voids in the structure and some areas of extra density. The components literally grow, getting longer and thicker. The phenomenon is well understood and designers compensate for it with a …

Missing the Point about Pennsylvania’s Nuclear Plants

A group that includes oil and gas companies in Pennsylvania released a study on Monday that argues that twenty years ago, planners underestimated the value of nuclear plants in the electricity market. According to the group, that means the state should now let the plants close.

Huh?

The question confronting the state now isn’t what the companies that owned the reactors at the time of de-regulation got or didn’t get. It’s not a question of whether they were profitable in the '80s, '90s and '00s. It’s about now. Business works by looking at the present and making projections about the future.

Is losing the nuclear plants what’s best for the state going forward?

Pennsylvania needs clean air. It needs jobs. And it needs protection against over-reliance on a single fuel source.


What the reactors need is recognition of all the value they provide. The electricity market is depressed, and if electricity is treated as a simple commodity, with no regard for its benefit to clean air o…

Why Nuclear Plant Closures Are a Crisis for Small Town USA

Nuclear plants occupy an unusual spot in the towns where they operate: integral but so much in the background that they may seem almost invisible. But when they close, it can be like the earth shifting underfoot.

Lohud.com, the Gannett newspaper that covers the Lower Hudson Valley in New York, took a look around at the experience of towns where reactors have closed, because the Indian Point reactors in Buchanan are scheduled to be shut down under an agreement with Gov. Mario Cuomo.


From sea to shining sea, it was dismal. It wasn’t just the plant employees who were hurt. The losses of hundreds of jobs, tens of millions of dollars in payrolls and millions in property taxes depressed whole towns and surrounding areas. For example:

Vernon, Vermont, home to Vermont Yankee for more than 40 years, had to cut its municipal budget in half. The town closed its police department and let the county take over; the youth sports teams lost their volunteer coaches, and Vernon Elementary School lost th…