Far be it from us to contribute to media-fueled fear, but recent developments in Japan have made some reconsider the safety of nuclear power--or give it more thought than they ever had.
The 9.0-magnitude earthquake and the tsunamis that hit last week damaged the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, run by the Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco). The utility has been struggling to prevent a possible meltdown and release of high-level radiation, and the emergency has caused some people to flee Tokyo.
As helicopters took to the skies to douse the Fukushima reactors with water, Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Administration raised its severity rating of the crisis from level 4 to level 5 on the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale. That brings it on par with the Three Mile Island accident, which forced an evacuation of thousands and cost an estimated $1 billion to clean up. … Read more