90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
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.

March 3 3 Comments

Burying Grief In Training A Goshawk

In her award-winning book "H Is for Hawk," Helen Macdonald tells the story of training a vicious predator after her father's death.

March 3 12 Comments

The End Of The Lunch Hour

Studies show that only one in five people actually take a break and leave their desks to eat.

March 2 13 Comments

The Beanie Baby Boom And Bust – What Happened?

Zac Bissonnette drew on hundreds of interviews to write a book about "mass delusion and the dark side of cute."

March 2 5 Comments

Russian Opposition MP Reacts To Nemtsov Killing

The sole member of the Russian parliament to vote against the annexation of Crimea discusses the killing of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov.