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If I Had the Ear of the Prime Minister, I Would Recommend the "Chernobyl Option"

March 15, 2011, 12:17 PM
Japanesenucleardisaster

The situation in Japan, as of Tuesday morning, keeps getting worse. We are getting close to the point of no return (the point where we have uncontrolled releases of radiation due to breach of containment). 

News & Developments

  • 3 reactors have suffered partial meltdowns.
  • These three reactors also suffered hydrogen gas explosions
  • A fourth unit has a nuclear waste storage site on fire (which can in principle release more radiation than in a standard reactor core).
  • Almost all workers, except for 50, have been evacuated. Once all the workers are evacuated, full scale melting is inevitable.
  • Unit 2 actually had 100% of its core fully exposed, for about 2 hours. Worse, cracks seem to have formed in the containment vessel, which may be the source of the very high radiation levels.
  • Unit 3 uses MOX fuel, which contains some deadly plutonium, one of the most dangerous substances on earth.The utility keeps saying that things are stable, only to see things worsen. This "stability" is the stability of hanging by your fingernails. 

If I had the ear of the Prime Minister, I would recommend the "Chernobyl Option."

  • Put the Japanese Air Force on alert
  • Assemble a huge fleet of helicopters. Put shielding underneath them.
  • Accumulate enough sand, boric acid, and concrete to smother these reactors, to entomb them forever. 

This is what the Soviets did in 1986, calling out the Red Air Force and sandbagging the reactor with over 5,000 tons of concrete and sand.

We have not yet hit the point of no return. But when we do, I think the only option left is this one.

More from the Big Idea for Tuesday, March 15 2011

 

If I Had the Ear of the Pri...

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