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Comment Re:Cheap? (Score 1) 305

Government policy. Seriously, that's the reason. In fact, we've built one (EBR-II in Idaho) and it worked great for 30 years. Then we shut it down.

France reprocesses its high-level waste without any issue. As a result, they have vastly less waste to store and what's left to store is mostly low-energy garbage that doesn't present a significant threat.

Comment Re: Budget and Timelines (Score 1) 305

Any reactor with a negative void coefficient is safe, barring a major compromise from the outside (such as an earthquake and tsunami). And Fukushima's problem wasn't that the reactor was old or unsafe, it's that a known design flaw published by the manufacturer decades ago wasn't corrected at that particular plant per manufacturer guidelines. They simply decided it wasn't worth the cost and their regulatory agency allowed them to run with it.

And even with all that - a decades old design with a decades old known flaw left uncorrected, an earthquake, a tsunami, incompetence bordering on negligence on the part of the operator and the regulator - how many deaths as a result? There's a reason why nuclear ranks far better in safety for human life than all other types of electrical power generation (yes, including wind and solar).

Comment Re:6.8 Billion (Score 5, Informative) 305

Someone on Reddit already ran these numbers. For the money spent on this nuclear plant after it was stopped/restarted/held up by red tape/hit by NIMBY BS/etc, you could build enough solar to power 274,000 homes; a fraction of what the nuclear option provided. You also have to consider how much area that much solar or wind would cover and the impacts to the local environment and wildlife. Finally, there's the death toll. Both solar and wind power - per kWH generated - cause more human deaths than nuclear power. And I don't believe any of this considers actual power generation vs nameplate generation. That solar plant is going to generate roughly 30% of what it's slated peak output suggests due to weather, night time, etc. In the US, we run our nuclear power plants at about ~93% with the remaining time lost to maintenance, refueling, etc.

In other words, your "renewables" cost several times as much even with all the red tape thrown in nuclear's path, they generate far less power, they kill more humans, have a much greater environmental impact, and basically just fucking suck in every comparison. When we're talking about solar, the panel construction requires all kinds of horrifically toxic stuff to be put together. Both wind and solar require huge amounts of batteries; also a toxic mess. Reprocessing nuclear fuel cuts the waste down to almost nothing. A family of four that has their entire lives powered from birth to death by nuclear will be responsible for nuclear waste that fits in a Coke can. And once you're reusing the high-energy waste products, almost everything that's left is so low-energy it poses no significant risk.

Comment Re:Economics? (Score 2) 305

Most of the older plants have had their license extended to 60 years. Some are requesting an extension to 80 years because everything is working just fine.

That's not safe, though, because you can't perform a complete metallurgical inspection of the interior of the reactor, and it tends to be damaged over time. Also, many of our older reactors are based on unsafe designs; that they haven't had an incident is laudable, but that they won't have a serious one in the future is still not assurable. And a number of them are proven insecure designs, literally based on the same design as used at Fukushima Daiichi and also storing spent fuel on site.

I am not wholly against nuclear power, but I am wholly against extending the lifespan of old reactors which frankly weren't safe when they were built. That human ingenuity has kept them going is not a counterargument. It is pucker-inducing.

Comment Re: Budget and Timelines (Score 1) 305

Fukushima would have actually been fairly safe if the all the safety features would have been implemented instead of being scaled down because of cost....

I don't think you can call a reactor design safe if it depends on external maintenance. Only a reactor which is self-scrambling in a runaway can possibly be called "safe". Then, perhaps even quite reasonably so, until we have to talk about decommissioning. I still think we should just shove the whole reactor into a subduction zone ;)

Comment Re:Good! (Score 0) 305

when coal (especially) is the main alternative for providing the huge baseload requirements of a solid electrical infrastructure, it's a no-brainer to have nuclear be a portion of the multi-legged stool we need.

Having no brain is suggesting that this overly industrialized and extractive society is worth preserving in its current form. Waste for the sake of production, indeed production for the sake of production, cannot continue endlessly unless we achieve zero emissions and 100% recycling.

Comment can't have a golden age "soon" (Score 1) 86

We've got to bootstrap our way into space before we can have a golden age thereof. We can't feasibly have a golden age of space until we're building spacecraft in space out of stuff we mined in space.

We're going to have to have a boring age of mining before we can have a golden age of exploration.

Comment Re:Is that all (Score 1) 498

Having a bad gene is not someone's fault, the best that you can say is 'bad luck'. If it is severe and you know that you have it, then maybe you should think hard before you have children.

Yes, you almost have it concisely there: Having a bad gene is bad luck, and choosing to breed if you have it is someone's fault.

Some people with genetic problems do do that, or have the foetus tested and aborted if it has the problem.

I just don't think I've got great genes or a great situation for being a good parent, so even though I think I'd be better than the average dillhole I still don't think that raises the bar sufficiently to call myself a good parent. Thus, I'm not having any. I've had multiple opportunities, and my last girlfriend even left me for someone else over it. It was sad, but that's preferable to having her skipping pills trying to catch my child, so I'm not really complaining. Now, how can I make a statement similar to "I'm putting my money where my mouth is" without making it sound like I'm sucking my own dick? If I could do that, I've have been all over pornhub already.

Comment Re: Go to hell Elon (Score 1) 254

The more I hear about these Tesla cars the worse they sound. "We decide when, where, and how you use car and Autopilot, because the EULA says we can do whatever we want."

Yes. It's a serious problem. Literally all of the self-driving cars are going to have to phone home in order to operate. It's standalone GPS vs. your phone all over again.

Comment Re:Because Windows Sucks (Score 1) 258

Don't worry, they've already warned us, updates are going to be all or nothing affairs.

Yeah they're there already now, it's just update rollups and the MSRT. So now I'm no longer installing updates. This is a slight hassle. At some point soon I'll remove everything not gaming-related from this PC, and go back to doing it all on my Linux system... which is right here, connected and ready to use. I just dislike switching (I don't have a KVM, just the functionality in my monitor) so I've been avoiding it. I also seem to need to put quieter fans in my Linux machine because it's way, way louder than my Win7 one.

Microsoft has really shot themselves in both feet with this spyware shit.

Comment Re: Go to hell Elon (Score 1) 254

accidents per vehicle mile traveled is an extremely misleading statistic, because for MuskWagons it only includes almost brand-new, high-end vehicles owned exclusively by rich people who can afford to have them religiously maintained

Right now you have to have your car maintained by Tesla in order to keep your warranty. Will Tesla even let you use Autopilot if you don't do that? I doubt it.

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Unix is the worst operating system; except for all others. -- Berry Kercheval