On March 11, 2011, a massive earthquake and tsunami struck Japan. This one-two punch resulted in widespread, almost unimaginable, destruction. Some of the lasting images, of course, are of the Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant, where inside, workers were frantically trying to mitigate a nuclear catastrophe. Though the worst possible outcome was avoided, estimates are that it will take decades to clean up all the radioactive debris in the region.
A year later, some lessons have been learned. According to a new report just released from the Union of Concerned Scientists, the U.S. government’s Nuclear Regulatory Commission could be doing more to ensure that our nuclear reactors – and the 116 million Americans who live within 50 miles of one – are safe.
The report’s co-author, Dave Lochbaum, director of the Nuclear Safety Project at the Union of Concerned Scientists, discusses the vulnerabilities of U.S. nuclear reactors.