Friday, March 18, 2011

Going Nuclear


This satellite view shows smoke rising from Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power plant on Monday after a second explosion blew the roof off of a containment building. Critical cooling systems have failed at three of the facility's reactors, exposing fuel and increasing the risk of a meltdown. Image credit: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/energy/2011/03/110314-japan-nuclear-power-plant-disaster/

While many Asian countries have affirmed their intention to promote nuclear energy, it is heartening to read of Venezuela’s expression to suspend their fledgling nuclear energy program in the wake of the damage to Japan’s four nuclear reactors from the massive earthquake and tsunami which struck the country last Friday. As President Hugo Chavez said: “What has happened… is extremely risky and dangerous for the whole world because despite the advanced technology that Japan has, just look at what has been happening with some nuclear reactors” (The Sun, March 17, 2011, p 02). Methinks, Chavez is a very sensible and thinking leader.

Hopefully, Malaysia will also re-consider going nuclear. Peter Chin, the Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister had announced plans to build two 1,000MW nuclear power plants in December last year. Yesterday’s Star had reported that the same minister had said on Wednesday that the Cabinet has not yet decided on nuclear power plants (p N4) which made him look like a pussyfooting numskull because this statement contradicted what he had declared in December.

Elizabeth Wong, Selangor executive councilor made more sense when she suggested Malaysia focus more on solar energy. She had said in a statement (reported by the same newspaper and on the same page): “Malaysia is set to become the world’s number three producer of solar cells while we have zero production capacity for nuclear. The Federal Government must start incorporating logic into (their) energy planning policies”. Aiyoh, that is not possible lah because Federal ministers are mostly idiots cleverly disguised as humans of extremely mediocre intelligence.

It’s good to know that blogger Irwan Abdul Rahman – and who’s also the Malay Mail lifestyle and entertainment executive editor – walked free after he had been discharged of making a false blog posting relating to Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) and the Earth Hour campaign (The Malay Mail, March 15, 2011, p 1).

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