Moving away from the first & second generation light water reactor designs is definitely something we should be doing, but simply going to smaller plants is a dubious plan.
> Dr. Jaczko cited a well-known characteristic of nuclear reactor fuel to continue to generate copious amounts of heat after a chain reaction is shut down. That “decay heat” is what led to the Fukushima meltdowns. The solution, he said, was probably smaller reactors in which the heat could not push the temperature to the fuel’s melting point.
Actually innovating, bringing something like the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor to reality, is more along the lines of what we should be doing.
Also, it was the tsunami that actually caused the meltdowns. Fukushima had appropriate backups for cooling the reactor, and were well under way when the reactors were shut down after the quake, they just didn't design for the eventually of a tsunami to come and categorically knock them all out.