Nuclear Power in a Politically Correct world
We are living in an age when our survival depends on whether we can communicate in a politically correct way. This is especially valid to the nuclear world.
The population of the industrialized world is split on the raison d’être of nuclear power. People are swinging between reluctance and acceptance. This is the world of politics.
Simultaneously both camps are using an ever increasing amount of electricity. This is the world of the industry which is responsible to provide electricity to the population.
All the parties are well aware that renewable energy sources cannot cope to supply the increasing demand let alone to replace the existing nuclear capacity. However it is not comme il faut to say this clearly. A statement like this would not be politically correct and consequently it would render the author to be sent to the wilderness
All this is sadly valid to the different countries of the industrialized world. From my observation point, Sweden is somewhere in the middle of the anti-pro spectrum. Here the modus vivendi is not to build new NPPs but rather upgrade the existing ones. 2 NPPs (Barsebäck) were closed; now the remaining 10 will soon produce what 12 did before and little later even surpass it. The demand is to supply all this with retained and preferably improved safety.
All thinkable computer analyses were run and proved that it is possible. However there are some annoying hooks; we are consuming parts of the hidden safety margins against unforeseen events and entirely new unexpected faults occur which had never been taken into account as safety issues. Unavoidable, the necessity to replace worn components with new parts also involves some unforeseen risks.
To pin all hopes of an ever increasing power supply from aging reactors is hardly a feasible concept.
Politicians make policies and technicians make their best to furnish those policies. There is an obvious risk that politicians transfer the problems to be shouldered by the technicians, demanding them to guarantee the safety of the upgraded old NPPs to escape any political responsibility for eventual misfortunes.
There are numerous examples in history when procedures like this - mildly put - were not successful.
Parts of this I said on the Swedish TV at 22:38 and 25:05 in the following link: www.svt.se