Fukushima: Emergency Planning? Failing Grade

Today – March 11, 2015 – marks the 4th anniversary of the ongoing nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan. There is so much one could say about this horrific accident.

One could speak at length about collusion between nuclear regulators & industry – and how this collusion exists not just in Japan, but worldwide.

How the sea wall built to protect the site was not improved in spite of the fact that the deficiency was known about for years before the accident, & never rectified (considerable detail about failures on the part of TEPCO & the Japanese regulator laid out in this very thorough, very readable report commissioned by the Japanese parliament).

One could discuss reactor cores & how far away “hot particles” were found.

Or the daily-daily-daily ongoing release of tons of contaminated water into the Pacific Ocean, causing who knows what unthinkable damage to all the life in that precious, irreplaceable body of water.

Or, perhaps, the huge piles of contaminated soils & debris being collected & stored in plastic bags (one related photo here) – bags with pretty short half-lives, you might say; soon enough, no doubt, to re-release the contaminants & re-contaminate earth, water & air) – or in some cases, debris incinerated & thus dispersed hither & yon on air currents (& via bodies of water).

The scope of this disaster, in other words, is nothing short of massive.

Let’s talk instead about the people of Japan.

& how emergency preparedness failed utterly to … prepare them.

Toshimitsu Homma of the Japan Atomic Energy Agency stated in April 2013 at an international conference on Emergency Management (held in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) that the most important lesson of Fukushima was that before the accident, “There was an implicit assumption that such a severe accident could not happen and thus insufficient attention was paid to such an accident by authorities.”

The “planning” for a real-life accident was not, shall we just politely say, realistic or, to use a term so frequently used by the nuclear industry, robust.

First, there were delays in ordering evacuations, and information provided was sketchy and minimal. Many people were evacuated into areas where the winds were carrying the worst contamination. Information was not provided in timely or helpful fashion, and many were left to “shelter in place” and then later advised to evacuate. Many people died in hospitals.

From The official report of The Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission: “A total of 146,520 residents were evacuated as a result of the government’s evacuation orders. However, many residents in the plant’s vacinity evacuated without accurate information. Unaware of the severity of the accident, they planned to be away only for a few days and evacuated with only the barest necessities. Evacuation orders were repeatedly revised as the evacuation zones expanded from the original 3-kilometer radius to 10 kilometers and later, 20 kilometers, all in one day. Each time the evacuation zone expanded, the residents were required to relocate. Some evacuees were unaware that they had been relocated to sites with high levels of radiation. Hospitals and nursing homes in the 20-kilometer zone struggled to secure evacuation transportation and find accommodations; 60 patients died in March from complications related to the evacuation. Frustration among the residents increased.

On March 15, residents in the zone between 20 and 30 kilometers from the plant were ordered to shelter-in-place. Since the order lasted for several weeks, these residents suffered greatly from a lack of communication and necessities. As a result, the shelter-in-place order was then revised to voluntary evacuation. Again, information on the basis for revising the evacuation order was sadly lacking, and residents found themselves having to make evacuation decisions without the necessary facts. The Commission concludes that the gov ernment effectively abandoned their responsibility for public safety.” END QUOTE

People had not been provided with potassium iodide (called KI) pills ahead of time, or if pills were available, the order to take them was not given. (There is some scandal over some university people getting KI, but not sharing the pills with other citizens.)

The amount of falling between the cracks, miscommunication, failure to follow chain of command, delays, lack of transparency, failure to give accurate & timely information about evacuation? All of these were over the top.

The fallout since?

  • Families have been broken apart in a multitude of ways
  • Communities destroyed
  • People have been lied to about contamination levels
  • Health effects have been minimized & lied about
  • Children are being diagnosed with thyroid cancer (108, last I heard)
  • Workers are/have been exposed to high levels of radiation (and/or lied to)
  • Radioactive contamination is here, there & everywhere
  • 120,000 people are still living in temporary housing
  • Clean-up is being rushed so people can be told their homes are now “safe” to return to
  • Compensation programs are being manipulated
  • People are being discouraged from speaking out – even jailed for doing so, I’ve heard.

 

(Absurdly, TEPCO is doing just fine!)

Not a pretty picture.

But a disaster economically, environmentally/ecologically ... and also a huge personal disaster for hundreds of thousands of people. Realistically, the entire country of Japan.

All these people, people like you & me, ill-prepared for disaster on such a huge scale.

Beyond our imagining, really.

In Durham Region (the entire Greater Toronto Area, in fact), we are similarly ill-prepared for a nuclear disaster.

A dizzying number of government departments (federal, provincial & municipal/regional) have a finger in the nuclear preparedness pie. (Have a look at what may be only a partial list here ).

To even the most un-trained eye, this list represents a daunting number of possible cracks for essential responses, communication & actions to fall between.

Simply mind-boggling.

Nuclear emergency exercises? Take a look at the previous post for an expert take on the real value of these expensive gatherings – designed to make the industry & responders appear ready for disaster, when in actual fact they are merely occasions for figuring out whether everyone has the right phone number to call.

Since March 11, 2011 & the frightening wake-up call of that massive accident, several countries have run, not walked, away from nuclear energy, Germany being one outstanding example.

“We want to end the use of nuclear energy and reach the age of renewable energy as fast as possible. It’s over. Fukushima has forever changed the way we define risk in Germany,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said.

In Switzerland, post-Fukushima, nuclear emergency planning has been upgraded to reflect the real-life possibility of a severe accident (instead of planning only for an event of minor severity), and pre-distribution of KI pills is being extended to everyone within 50 kilometres of their nuclear plants.

Here in Ontario, there is far too much complacency about nuclear safety & the real risks inherent in nuclear energy production. Complacency & lack of transparency are a dangerous combination.

Boxer Mike Tyson once said “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.”

A nuclear accident in Durham Region – so close to the large population centre that is the Greater Toronto Area – would be a horrific punch in the face.

We need more robust nuclear emergency planning – now.

Before an accident happens.

 

March 11, 2015.

Fukushima – 4 Years: Information Resources

Ten Lessons from Fukushima – brand-new booklet/project from Peace Boat group in Japan

Beyond NuclearFukushima Four Years On: will it happen here?

Beyond Nuclear Thunderbird newsletter on Fukushima

Fukushima Meltdown 4 Years Later2 videos on Fairewinds Energy Education site

More Fukushima info on Fairewinds site

Health Consequences after Fukushima Accident (+ other info) – 13-minute conversation with Dr. Ian Fairlie 

Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) information on Fukushima 

Quotations about emergency planning

The official report of The Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission (National Diet of Japan) – Executive Summary (88 pages; so worth reading! 88 pages sounds daunting but truthfully, there are many blank pages in the actual layout. Includes surveys of people & workers; so poignant to hear their voices explaining their experiences & frustrations).

The State of Affairs and Ongoing Challenges of the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster  (Citizens Commission on Nuclear Energy, Tokyo, Japan)

UN’s UNSCEAR Fukushima Radiation Report Blasted by IPPNW’s Alex Rosen (if you do a search you can also find video on this)  --- UNSCEAR = United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation; IPPNW = International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War.

Books to Check Out:

Strong in the Rain – Surviving Japan’s Earthquake, Tsunami, and Fukushima Nuclear Disaster, by Lucy Birmingham & David McNeill.

Fukushima – The Story of a Nuclear Disaster, by David Lochbaum, Edwin Lyman, Susan Q. Stranahan and the Union of Concerned Scientists.  [later posting here has a ton of info from the book]

** so many videos/YouTubes one can see too, of course…

5 recent ones:

Municipal Candidates Overwhelmingly Favour World-Class Nuclear Emergency Planning for Durham Region

Whitby, October 14, 2014Durham Nuclear Awareness (DNA)’s municipal election survey indicates there is a near consensus among respondents that elected officials should advocate for the province to consult openly with the citizens of Durham Region on updating nuclear emergency plans, with the goal that revised plans will meet international best practices. DNA posed three questions on this topic to the 209 candidates running for office this Fall. Candidates were asked:

1. If elected, will you advocate for world-class nuclear emergency plans that meet or exceed international best practices?

2. Do you support directing Durham Region staff to study and provide a report to Regional Council on international best practices for nuclear emergency plans?

3. Do you agree that Durham Region should request the government of Ontario to openly and transparently consult with the municipalities and citizens of Durham Region on new off-site nuclear emergency plans?

Responses were overwhelmingly in the affirmative on all three questions.

The overall response rate was 60%, with Oshawa’s being the highest at 73% and including three incumbent Regional Councillors and two incumbent City Councillors responding. Scugog showed the lowest rate of return, at 27%. No incumbent politicians in Scugog responded to the survey.

As DNA spokesperson Gail Cockburn comments, “With the recent KI pill pre-distribution motion passing unanimously at Regional Council in September, these survey results clearly establish there is both the need and the political will to strengthen nuclear emergency planning in Durham Region.”

DNA’s Web site shows results broken down by municipality so that citizens can easily see what their local candidates have stated publicly about the need to better protect Durham’s citizens in the event of a nuclear emergency. 

 30 –

Nuclear Emergency Planning: Did You Know?

** On March 11, 2011 a major nuclear accident took place in Fukushima, Japan. 146,000 people were told to evacuate in a 20-kilometre radius around the plant. 270,00 people remain away from their homes in northeast Japan since the tsunami/earthquake/nuclear disaster. A study carried out by the Japanese Parliament concluded in 2012 that the cause of the nuclear accident was “man-made” and cited collusion between the nuclear regulator and TEPCO. In April 2013, Toshimitsu Homma of the Japan Atomic Energy Agency stated at an international conference on Emergency Management held in Ottawa that the most important lesson of Fukushima was that before the accident, “There was an implicit assumption that such a severe accident could not happen and thus insufficient attention was paid to such an accident by authorities.”

The Nuclear Emergency Scene in Durham Region

1. A very large number of agencies are involved in nuclear emergency planning. Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and the (federal) Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) have responsibilities for on-site emergency response, while off-site emergency planning is the responsibility of the Province of Ontario. Within Durham Region, the Durham Emergency Management Office (DEMO) is responsible for implementing provincial plans. With the dauntingly large number of federal, provincial, regional and municipal agencies involved, there is a very real risk of bureaucratic mix-ups in the event of a major accident. Such mix-ups occurred both in Ukraine following the Chernobyl accident, and in Japan following the Fukushima accident.

2. Sufficiently detailed plans for a serious nuclear emergency do not currently exist. Plans currently in place under the PNERP (Provincial Nuclear Emergency Response Plan), the TNERP (Toronto Nuclear Emergency Response Plan) & the DRNERP (Durham Region NERP) are for a smaller accident, not for a Chernobyl or Fukushima-style major accident or very large radioactive release. The emergency exercise carried out at the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station in May 2014 involved more than 50 agencies – but no members of the public – and was not planned around the possibility of a major accident.

3. The Ontario and federal governments have failed to review & revise the Province’s nuclear emergency plans to address accidents involving large radiation releases since the Fukushima nuclear disaster took place in March 2011.

4. Most citizens are ill-prepared to respond to a serious nuclear emergency – even those who live close to one of Durham’s two large nuclear generating stations. Current measures requiring personal emergency preparedness and/or possible evacuation are neither well-detailed nor widely understood ... nor widely communicated. For example, most citizens are not aware that they are responsible for making their own evacuation arrangements in the event of an emergency (even if they don’t own a vehicle), what means of transportation to use if they don’t own a car, or how to effect family reunifications. (See article here.)

5. “Sheltering in place” (i.e., staying where you are when you are notified of a nuclear accident) may be an early instruction, but in the case of an actual release of radionuclides from a nuclear power plant, most ordinary houses will not provide adequate protection from all exposures, again stressing the need for effective evacuation planning. Evacuation plans and routes and locations of evacuation centres are not familiar or known to people in Durham Region or the Greater Toronto Area in general, who might have to evacuate quickly in the event of a serious nuclear accident at Pickering or Darlington.

6. The Province of Ontario determines the “zones” of notification in which public alerting after an accident & the distribution of potassium iodide pills (see below), must be carried out.  These zones are both arbitrary and inadequate, and in no way reflect the distances over which radiation may in actuality travel, or where dangerous hot particles may ultimately land.

7. Potassium iodide pills (known as KI pills) must be taken as soon as possible after a major radioactive release in order to prevent the thyroid gland from absorbing radioactive iodine, possibly later resulting in thyroid cancer. This is an important action to reduce the risk of damage to the thyroid gland, but is only effective if taken at the right time (i.e., just before or at the very beginning of a radioactive release). It must be noted that KI does not prevent the absorption of a host of other radioactive isotopes that could be released to the air and unwittingly breathed in, and so, as already outlined, effective evacuation is also key.

8. Regulations about the distribution of KI pills are currently under federal review in Canada. In some countries (e.g. France and Switzerland) they are pre-distributed to all households within 10-50 km of a nuclear plant. The CNSC is recommending that regulations around KI pills be changed, and that KI be pre-distributed to all citizens within the 10-kilometre zone of any major nuclear facility. Ontario’s provincial government (which is in charge of Ontario’s off-site nuclear emergency plans) does not appear to be in support of this initiative. (See recent Toronto Star article here.)

9. On June 17th & 25th [2014] , Durham Nuclear Awareness made presentations & asked members of Durham’s Regional Council to advocate on behalf of its citizens for world-class nuclear emergency plans, and to ask the provincial government to conduct transparent public consultations with Durham Region and its citizens on revisions to the province’s nuclear emergency plans. (The text of our June 25th powerpoint presentation can be found here.)

References:

DNA Presentation to Durham Regional Council - June 25th

On June 25th, 2014 DNA made a presentation to Durham's Regional Council to ask for leadership in requesting that the Province of Ontario upgrade nuclear emergency planning. Citizen presentations are limited to 5 minutes. The following information was presented to the Councillors in very considerable haste in order to meet the 5-minute deadline.

Presentation Title: Public Safety in Durham Region: Political leadership needed in upgrading offsite nuclear planning

(also here DNA to Reg Council June 25'14)

DNA Background

  • Working on Emergency Planning since 2012; regular at DNHC (Durham Nuclear Health Committee) meetings since early 2012
  • Sought expert help from Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA)
  • CELA’s expert has been on this issue since 1988, i.e., post-Chernobyl
  • CELA presented very comprehensive report to DNHC in September 2012 – & then at Darlington refurbishment hearing in December 2012 & Pickering hearings
  • DNA also invited to attend the Nuclear Emergency Management Coordinating Committee (NEMCC) meeting held in Toronto last November
  • On Monday (June 23rd) took part in CNSC (Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission) meeting/conference call re: recommended changes in EP measures – no one from DEMO or Region in attendance

DNA Take-Away?

  • Planning basis is not for major accidents, or for major releases of radioactivity
  • There appears to be much confusion among the public as well as among politicians as to who is responsible for what

Agencies Involved in Emergency Planning

DNA invited to attend Nuclear Emergency Management Coordinating Committee (NEMCC) meeting in Toronto last November.

Provincial Ministries involved in EP

  • Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing
  • Ministry of Labour
  • Ministry of the Environment
  • Ministry of Health & Long-Term Care
  • Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs
  • Ministry of Natural Resources
  • Ministry of Northern Development, Mines
  • Ministry of Energy
  • Ministry of Attorney General
  • Ministry of Transportation
  • Ministry of Community & Social Services
  • Ministry of Community Safety & Correctional Services
  • Emergency Management Ontario, MCSCS
  • OPP – Emergency Management Unit
  • Communications Branch, MCSCS

Federal Organizations

  • Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
  • Health Canada
  • Public Safety Canada
  • Transport Canada

Municipally & Regionally

  • DEMO (Durham Emergency Management Office)
  • Kincardine
  • City of Toronto
  • Town of SaugeenShores
  • Town of Amherstbburg
  • Town of Essex
  • Laurentian Hills/Deep River NEPC

Take Away?

A lot of jurisdictional issues. Or, cracks to fall between.    Why politicians need to act.

What is Clear? 

  • MCSCS [Ministry of Community Safety & Correctional Services] is quite clear that the planning basis is not for large-scale accident or release
  • Durham Nuclear Health Committee also understands this
  • Joint Review Panel Recommendations: see list (#46)
  • Judge on Darlington New Build: Emergency Planning cannot be ignored

Also clear & essential to grasp:

  • OPG is not responsible for off-site planning & it is off-site we are here about

Emergency Exercise

  • OPG [Ontario Power Generation] report obtained by FOI [Freedom of Information] in May 2013 showed the public has no idea what to do in case of a nuclear emergency
  • Exercise held end of May: No doubt useful – but without public involvement, how can the public possibly learn from it?
  • The exercise has no bearing on the current planning basis for nuclear emergencies, or on what members of the public will do in the event of an accident

Take-Away: Need to keep eye on the ball & not get distracted!

  Fukushima: Real-Life Experience

  • So much to say, not enough time.
  • Many insights about the Fukushima disaster in these 2 books; I recommend them highly!
  • Toshimitsu Homma of the Japan Atomic Energy Agency stated in April 2013 at an international conference on Emergency Management held in Ottawa that the most important lesson of Fukushima was that before the accident, “There was an implicit assumption that such a severe accident could not happen and thus insufficient attention was paid to such an accident by authorities.”

<The books referenced are Strong in the Rain – Surviving Japan’s Earthquake, Tsunami, and Fukushima Nuclear Disaster & Fukushima – The Story of a Nuclear Disaster>

Conclusions

  • Durham Region: 10 reactors, some very old now & running past “design basis”
  • Public confused - almost everyone seems confused about what to do if accident happens, & who is responsible for what
  • Durham Region stands to be most affected if the unthinkable happens, & I heard OPG CEO Tom Mitchell say [6 months into the Fukushima disaster] “The unthinkable can happen.”

Take-Away:

  • You as Durham Region’s elected representatives have a major responsibility here.

DNA Recommendation

DNA urges Durham Regional Council to advocate on behalf of its citizens for world-class nuclear emergency plans.

We recommend:

•  Durham Region study and endorse international best practices as our community’s expectation of offsite nuclear emergency plans.

•  Request that the Province carry out transparent and meaningful public consultations with Durham Region and its citizens on revisions to the province’s nuclear emergency plans.

 

3 Editorials from Reactor Community Newspapers

There have been three editorials from nuclear reactor community newspapers that really stand out (two recent & one from two years ago), and that citizens & politicians in Durham Region need to keep in mind. All three reference the need to plan appropriately for nuclear emergencies in Durham, home to not just one, but two gigantic nuclear generating stations.

Here are the editorials, with the most recent at the top:

1. May 28, 2014   [Durham Region. Com] – from Pickering News-Advertiser May 28/14. Getting the message out in Durham on nuclear safety

If a sampling of residents is any indication, there would be chaos in Durham Region in the unlikely chance of a serious nuclear incident in Pickering or Darlington.

The news comes amidst a multi-agency mock nuclear emergency exercise taking place over three days this week to test preparedness among those responsible for dealing with an emergency.

It also comes just a few weeks after a new nuclear emergency kit -- featuring easy-to-read binder pages and a pinpoint LED flashlight -- was distributed to more than 200,000 households (at a cost of $3 each) within a 10-kilometre radius of Durham Region’s nuclear plants.

But the results of an Ontario Power Generation focus group obtained by Greenpeace Canada clearly indicate that despite efforts at outreach and community engagement by Durham’s nuclear operator, a frightening number of the region’s residents remain completely unaware of what they should do in a worst-case nuclear scenario. The report concludes there are “very low levels of awareness” among residents living closest to Durham’s two nuclear generating stations.

One resident indicated she would try to get to Toronto in a nuclear accident; a mother in Pickering said she would want to retrieve her children from school.

Each of those, depending on the circumstance, might be precisely the wrong thing to do, based on protocols laid out in established monitoring and evacuation directives.

This study shows rather clearly that even though OPG has lived up to its obligations to regularly provide information related to nuclear incidents, it hasn’t had much success in ensuring that the information it provides is being retained, let alone perused by residents. It is on this basis that OPG must move to develop a mechanism to more effectively measure and manage the success and retention of such important information for residents. Residents, too, have a responsibility to become informed, for their own and their family’s sakes.

Nuclear power is here to stay as a source of energy generation in Ontario and OPG has a solid record of safely and professionally operating its reactors in Durham Region. But there are well known and serious risks associated with accidents.

The lesson here is that it’s not enough to assemble, package and distribute important information without accompanying oversight and follow up with the recipients. Durham Region, as the entity responsible, is obliged to ensure that the information it provides is meaningful to residents, that they are aware and informed, and that they know their role in an emergency.

-- Metroland Media Group Ltd., Durham Region Division … Editor's note: The story was amended May 29 to note that Durham Region is responsible for emergency preparedness.

2. May 21, 2014 Nuclear ruling presents an opportunity in Durham --- Clarington This Week

A federal court ruling that orders more environmental study before new nuclear reactors can be built at Darlington must be viewed positively.

The ruling is a victory for Greenpeace and other environmental organizations that challenged a separate federal review panel’s earlier recommendation for approval of the new build at Darlington. The May 14 ruling by Justice James Russell orders more study of hazardous substance emissions, the proper handling of nuclear waste and more detailed analysis of how the site’s operators would deal with a severe accident.

Referred to by Greenpeace’s Shawn-Patrick Stensil as a “common-sense ruling”, it effectively puts the ball back in play for Ontario Power Generation to determine its next steps. OPG’s Neal Kelly said the company must first fully review Justice Russell’s ruling before deciding how to proceed.

It’s not likely that OPG will simply abandon its plans for the new build at Darlington. A huge investment of time, money and human resources have already been spent in preparing the site for the environmental assessment approved by the federal panel. Additional study will cost more, certainly, but will also dig deeper into identifying methods and processes to address the areas flagged by Justice Russell in his ruling.

In the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster in Japan, manageable plans for nuclear emissions, waste storage and, especially, the emergency response to a severe accident are vitally important to Durham Region residents.

So, though the legal ruling represents a setback for advocates of the new build who have been working hard in recent years to see it move forward, it also represents for the larger community one more hard and close look at ways to mitigate the impact on the natural environment and more detailed response plans should the worst happen.

We call on OPG to accept the ruling and work quickly to address the gaps Justice Russell has identified in the existing environmental assessment, move forward in creating detailed plans for emergency response and clear this vitally important step.

The new build isn’t going to happen any time soon given Ontario’s current long-term energy plan. Still, addressing all the issues identified today will allow OPG officials to hit the ground running when the decision comes. -- Metroland Media Group Ltd., Durham Region Division

3. Hoping for the best, preparing for the worst in Clarington Clarington This Week editorial [September 20/12] http://www.durhamregion.com/opinion/editorial/article/1504692--hoping-for-the-best-preparing-for-the-worst-in-clarington [link is now defunct]

Be prepared.

That universally recognized motto of the Scout movement must also guide nuclear experts as they work towards extending the life of Clarington's Darlington Nuclear Generating Station to 2055.

A federal environmental assessment is currently underway as part of the long-term nuclear refurbishment program at Ontario Power Generation's Darlington site and members of the public are encouraged to take part in some upcoming hearings to share their views.

As part of the ongoing process, some local groups, led by the Canadian Environmental Law Association, have raised timely concerns about the site's and the community's preparedness should a nuclear emergency occur.

Specifically, CELA is calling for a much wider scope of preparation for a large-scale nuclear emergency, unlikely as that may be. Theresa McClenaghan, executive director of CELA, noted recently that most nuclear emergency response plans at Darlington are based on site-contained incidents that wouldn't pose a threat beyond the nuclear facility.

And the spectre of Japan's Fukushima nuclear emergency and evacuation following the earthquake and tsunami continues to cast a shadow on nuclear power generation around the world. Though our geology differs and there is a minuscule chance of a similar occurrence in Durham Region, the point of preparedness is to have a response plan in place for multiple emergency scenarios.

In that context, CELA's call for a detailed emergency plan for potential incidents such as a large radiation release that would require evacuation in a 20-kilometre radius makes sense.

It doesn't mean that there is an expectation that such an incident would occur, but would provide a more robust and effective emergency plan for OPG officials, municipal leaders and everyday citizens to respond.

For their part, OPG officials say the current focus is on "credible" disasters, those that would be expected here at home. That is as it should be, at a minimum. But there is no harm in examining and preparing for less "credible" emergency incidents.

Any resistance to such a notion is akin to automotive manufacturers in the past resisting the installation of seat belts in automobiles lest they be viewed by consumers as unsafe.

The human and economic cost of an uncontained nuclear incident would be exponentially greater if there are no processes or plans in place for the unlikely, for the unexpected, for the incredible emergency.

A plan that explores and prepares for the widest possible spectrum of potential emergencies must be assembled.