News Release

Japan Nuclear Disaster: Danger for U.S.

A New York Times piece titled “In Japan Reactor Failings, Danger Signs for the U.S.” reports: “Emergency vents that American officials have said would prevent devastating hydrogen explosions at nuclear plants in the United States were put to the test in Japan — and failed to work, according to experts and officials with the company that operates the crippled Fukushima Daiichi plant….

“The improved venting system at the Fukushima plant was first mandated for use in the United States in the late 1980s as part of a ‘safety enhancement program’ for boiling-water reactors that used the Mark I containment system, which had been designed by General Electric in the 1960s. Between 1998 and 2001, Tokyo Electric followed suit at Fukushima Daiichi, where five of six reactors use the Mark I design.”

ARNIE GUNDERSEN, arnie at fairewinds.com, fairewinds.com
Gundersen is a former nuclear industry insider and now an independent consultant. He said today: “The U.S. Mark 1 Designs are just as vulnerable to containment failures as Fukushima. I have argued this point with the NRC [Nuclear Regulatory Commission] for the last six years, and the NRC continues to assume that the probability of containment leakage is zero.”

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167

Institute for Public Accuracy
980 National Press Building, Washington, D.C. 20045
(202) 347-0020 * http://www.accuracy.org/ * ipa@accuracy.org
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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Japan Nuclear Disaster: Danger for U.S.

Interviews Available

A New York Times piece titled “In Japan Reactor Failings, Danger Signs for the U.S.” reports: “Emergency vents that American officials have said would prevent devastating hydrogen explosions at nuclear plants in the United States were put to the test in Japan — and failed to work, according to experts and officials with the company that operates the crippled Fukushima Daiichi plant….

“The improved venting system at the Fukushima plant was first mandated for use in the United States in the late 1980s as part of a ‘safety enhancement program’ for boiling-water reactors that used the Mark I containment system, which had been designed by General Electric in the 1960s. Between 1998 and 2001, Tokyo Electric followed suit at Fukushima Daiichi, where five of six reactors use the Mark I design.” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/18/world/asia/18japan.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha2

ARNIE GUNDERSEN, (802) 865-9955, arnie@fairewinds.com, http://fairewinds.com
Gundersen is a former nuclear industry insider and now an independent consultant. He said today: “The U.S. Mark 1 Designs are just as vulnerable to containment failures as Fukushima. I have argued this point with the NRC [Nuclear Regulatory Commission] for the last six years, and the NRC continues to assume that the probability of containment leakage is zero.”

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020, (202) 421-6858; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167