Here I am, chatting away about the hens and my veg plot with no consideration for the wider world.  I’ll admit, my focus does tend to be fairly close to home, but the disaster in Japan hasn’t escaped even my attention.  One of the most obvious areas of concern was the damage done to one of their nuclear power installations.  Now, I’ve never been terribly keen on nuclear power.  I grew up living quite close to Hinkley Point, and remember doing a project for GCSE English on the then proposed Hinkley C reactor.  (Currently there’s a “Stop Hinkley” campaign – see http://www.stophinkley.org/StopPress.htm for more info.)

Obviously, I can appreciate the benefit of nuclear power – the massive amount of energy which can be created to satisfy our continuously rising requirements.  But I feel it comes at too high a price.  It is simply too dangerous, and the devastating results of any leak are too severe and too long-lasting. 

We should learn from the Japanese experience – they have a good safety record with nuclear energy, but even their systems have not been able to cope with the earthquake – they are, as I understand it, now using sea water to cool the reactors – something they don’t usually do because of the….er….corrosive properties of salt water…hmm….

I believe technologies such as solar and wind energy are the only way forward – safe and sustainable.  And if this means cutting our energy requirements (as individuals, as a nation, as a planet) well, so be it.  Better than the risk from radiation if we rely on the nuclear approach.

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