PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Friday, March 18, 2011

Japan Raises Severity Rating Of Country’s Nuclear Crisis

A satellite image shows Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant in Japan. (AP/DigitalGlobe)

A satellite image shows Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant in Japan. (AP/DigitalGlobe)

The Los Angeles Times reports that U.S. government nuclear experts believe there’s now a hole or crack in the wall of the spent fuel rod storage pool in Unit 4 of the crippled Fukushima power plant, a problem the Union of Concerned Scientists says “has no precedent.”

USA Today reports that in essence there are three outcomes. In the best case scenario, the plant is ruined, but high radiation releases are avoided. Under option two, a significant amount of radiation is released from spent fuel ponds, but contamination is limited to the area around the plant. The third and worst case scenario is a full meltdown, where the nuclear fuel pellets melt through all of the containment structures at the reactor and release radioactive materials into the earth and possibly the atmosphere.

We speak with nuclear power critic Arjun Makhijani, president of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research.


Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

May 27 Comment

How Trump, Clinton And Sanders Change Their Voices To Win Over Voters

Charisma is a crucial component of a politician's appeal to voters. But there's more than one way to inspire confidence.

May 27 52 Comments

New York Considers A Ban On Declawing Cats

Some pet owners have routinely had their cats declawed. But opponents say the procedure isn't so simple.

May 27 3 Comments

New Drug-Resistant Bacteria Seen In U.S. For The First Time

The CDC's director has expressed concern, saying it shows that we're close to the "end of the road" for antibiotics.

May 26 6 Comments

As Lethal Heroin Overdose Numbers Rise, Families Find Solace In Organ Donation

Organ banks around the country have noted an increasing number of organs from donors who have died of overdoses.