America’s aging nuclear power plants an increasing concern for seismic risks

September 2, 2011WASHINGTON (AP) — The risk that an earthquake would cause a severe accident at a U.S. nuclear plant is greater than previously thought, 24 times as high in one case, according to an AP analysis of preliminary government data. The nation’s nuclear regulator believes a quarter of America’s reactors may need modifications to make them safer. The threat came into sharp focus last week, when shaking from the largest earthquake to hit Virginia in 117 years appeared to exceed what the North Anna nuclear power plant northwest of Richmond was built to sustain. The two North Anna reactors are among 27 in the eastern and central U.S. that a preliminary Nuclear Regulatory Commission review has said may need upgrades. That’s because those plants are more likely to get hit with an earthquake larger than the one their design was based on. Just how many nuclear power plants are more vulnerable won’t be determined until all operators recalculate their own seismic risk based on new assessments by geologists, something the agency plans to request later this year. The NRC on Thursday issued a draft of that request for public comment. The review, launched well before the East Coast quake and the Japan nuclear disaster in March, marks the first complete update to seismic risk in years for the nation’s 104 existing reactors, despite research showing greater hazards. The NRC and the industry say reactors are safe as they are, for now. The average risk to U.S. reactors of core damage from a quake remains low, at one accident every 500 years, according to the AP analysis of NRC data. But emails obtained in a more than 11,000-page records request by The Associated Press show that NRC experts were worried privately this year that plants needed stronger safeguards to account for the higher risk assessments. –Yahoo News
contribution Warren
This entry was posted in Dark Ages, Earth Watch, Earthquake Omens?, Environmental Threat, Seismic tremors. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to America’s aging nuclear power plants an increasing concern for seismic risks

  1. AWatchman4Him says:

    6.4 in the heart of Argentina !

    Like

  2. luisport says:

    ENENEWS Energy News
    Radioactive slag used for road construction in New York, 10X normal radiation — “It is on al http://bit.ly/qpYxXA #Fukushima
    há 1 hora »
    ENENEWS Energy News
    JUST IN: Black smoke seen rising from North Anna nuclear plant after Virginia quake http://enenews.com/just-in-black-smoke-seen-rising-from-north-anna-nuclear-plant-after-virginia-quake via #northanna #vaquake #dcquake
    há 2 horas »
    ENENEWS Energy News
    JUST IN: Black smoke seen rising from North Anna nuclear plant after Virginia quake http://bit.ly/rinJJ7 #Fukushima
    há 2 horas »
    ENENEWS Energy News
    Mysterious person in radiation suit appears on Fukushima webcam (VIDEOS) http://bit.ly/pXRkn0 #Fukushima
    há 3 horas »
    ENENEWS Energy News
    Mainichi: 105 microsieverts per hour found outside no-entry zone http://bit.ly/nSTccM #Fukushima
    há 4 horas »
    ENENEWS Energy News
    368 microsieverts/hour detected in Futaba-machi, 4 km west of plant http://bit.ly/oIvRr0 #Fukushima
    há 5 horas »
    ENENEWS Energy News
    New TEPCO data suggests there are 5 active faults near Fukushima nuke plant — Previously considered unlikel http://bit.ly/oo49ZI #Fukushima
    há 16 horas » ENENEWS Energy News
    Time.com: Augmented Inspection Team only used when risk of core damage rises by 100 — AIT sent to North Anna #VAquake http://enenews.com/unusual-nrc-inspection-team-at-north-anna-is-used-only-once-every-couple-years-time-com-says-team-only-sent-when-risk-of-reactor-core-damage-rises-by-100
    há 20 horas

    Like

  3. Kelly says:

    Scary! Anyone seen watse nuclear nightmare made in 2009 documentary. I cried a bit watching it.

    Would the American government tell us a real risk?

    Like

  4. luisport says:

    ENENEWS Energy News
    Slow-moving, major typhoon to hit Japan this weekend — Heavy rainfall expected for Fukushima, disaster zone http://bit.ly/qWawtZ #Fukushima
    há 6 minutos

    Like

  5. I must confess, although I have been watching all the earth changes for a long time, I always had my head in the sand when it came to nuclear power plants. I was under the assumption that it is clean, cheap energy and it is safe. Three-Mile Island couldn’t even rattle my little comfort zone in my corner of the sand. And Chernobyl? Well, that was the Russians and they must have done a lot wrong for that melt down to happen. My head was comfortable in the sand.

    Needless to say, Japan changed all of that. My head came out of the sand and I started paying attention. Then the recent Virginia quake really got my attention when I realized how vulnerable we are. Today, in our local paper, there’s an article about “Quakes a Risk to U.S Reactors”. “Perry power plant, which is located by Toledo OH (hour and a half from me) tops a list of 27 showing steepest increase in chance of core damage.”

    Ah, such wonderful news to wake up and drink my coffee to. Maybe my little spot in the sand wasn’t so bad after all. (Sarc)

    Be blessed everyone and Maranatha

    Like

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