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Nonetheless, wishful thinking tends to apply more at the level of upper management.  The technicians on the spot usually have a pretty good idea of how things actually work.

Absolutely. But upper management are the ones who veto the agit-prop. So the more likely explanation for the observed discrepancy between the agit-prop and the facts (and actions) on the ground is that upper management was in denial and the technicians were not. (And that, thank God, upper management did not impede the technicians too greatly.)

Malooga's main point here is that the meltdowns were already known, but the decision was made for reasons of public relations to pretend that they were not known

And my point is that there was no single "the decision" made. Information does not flow instantly and flawlessly through an organisation, particularly when upper management is clueless and out of touch. So it is entirely possible (plausible, even) that one hand did not know what the other was doing.

Congratulations on buying the media narrative. I hope it gives you good service. To say more would be off-topic.

I'd say "make a diary where it is on topic." But honestly, I fail to see how devoting another diary to silly conspiracy theories would improve the signal-to-noise ratio of this place...

more reactors are safely decommissioned than blow up.

That is because they had exterior power that made decommissioning possible.

We can lose a lot of power before we are unable to safely decommission the existing nuclear fleet.

Even if we pump every remaining oil reservoir at rates that damage ultimately recoverable reserves, and strip-mine every coal deposit and tar sand pit, there is an upper limit on how fast you can get fossil fuels out of the ground. So even pretending that sustainable energy sources cannot take up the slack from fossil fuels (something which is less than perfectly obvious), we will still have enough power to decommission these plants, if that is what we decide to use that power for.

Of course, it is always within our power to make the political decision not to safely decommission the plants. But that would be a political decision, not an unavoidable fact of life.

If the Sahara Desert plan works out, I will quit worrying--for Europe--as you will have all the power you need for decommissioning.  I admit I think the scheme is vaporware,

Of course it is. There are no silver bullets, and it is not intended as "a plan" in the sense of being a silver bullet. There is no silver bullet. And even if there were, monocropping your energy supply like that would be criminally insane. The actual solution, if it is implemented, would be a patchwork of more or less independent solutions - harvest North Sea wind, improve energy efficiency, harvest solar power, run-of-river hydro, dams, and so on and so forth.

But the Sahara example does illustrate that the energy is there, and we have the technology and resources to harvest it. Whether we will be politically able to do so or not is a different question, but one that is not well served by assuming a priori that we will not.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sun Jun 12th, 2011 at 06:51:06 AM EST
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