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Re: I thought of an initialy regulated industry!... (fwd)

Forwarded message:

> Date: Fri, 02 Oct 1998 07:41:29 -0400
> From: Duncan Frissell <[email protected]>
> Subject: Re: I thought of an initialy regulated industry!...

> A normally operating coal plant releases more radioactive material (carbon
> 14) than a normally operating nuclear plant.

The largest environment impact issue with a nuclear plant is hot water
discharge (which is much larger than the exhaust from a coal plant) and
spent fuel storage because of the amount of time that is required to
guarantee seals.

In the first place the heated water effects the ecology of the local area
and you see the ripples of this in the ecology changes for hundreds of
miles. An additional impact is that because of the water needs of plants
they are usualy located in or near wetlands which are critical to the entire
eco-cycle for thousands of miles.

The issue with storage is that it occurs on a time line that is best
described as near-geologic. Periods of time that are orders of magnitude
longer than human civilizations survive.

> coal plant are not only more voluminous (though less dense) than the coal
> that goes in but also contain a substance that is more poisonous than
> plutonium (arsenic trioxide).

Consider the difference in volume of these two waste products...


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