Spend a Lifetime Designing Nuclear Reactors, and You Get Pretty Good At It (cont'd)

CW: Describe your work with standards which was the basis for your Standards Service Award.

AW: In the late 60s there were many organizations using different calculational methods to design, license, and operate new power reactors. To assist the Atomic Energy Commission in their regulatory process, the American Nuclear Society helped to develop voluntary industry standards that would identify best practices. This work continues today, and has contributed to the exceptional safety record of the nuclear industry in the U.S.

CW: What consulting work are you involved with currently?

AW: I still work with the development of advanced space and terrestrial reactors, and consult with the NRC in some of their licensing activities.

CW: In your experience, what nuclear safety issue is most misunderstood by the public, and why?

AW: It is simply a fact that the public and many in the media and government do not understand, and greatly overestimate, the health effects of radiation. All estimates are based on a faulty extension of early, incomplete test data.

CW: Based on personal experience, describe the effect ocean acidification is having on sea life.

AW: I have seen a lot change in the world's oceans during my 30 years of scuba diving and over 1,300 dives. I have seen the obvious effects of pollution runoff, ocean warming, overfishing, and physical damage from humans, but not obviously from ocean acidification.

CW: What reactor design or technology do you believe is most promising for the future?

AW: There is no basis for making any choice. New designs need to be built and operated for significant periods of time before their reliability and costs can be evaluated. The marketplace will determine which is best.      < back

DR. GENE NELSON Ph.D. INTERVIEW WITH MICHAEL KILLEN - Michael Killen at KZSU Stanford Radio spoke with Gene Nelson, PhD., Government Liaison for Californians for Green Nuclear Power, about how PG&E's plan to shut down Diablo Canyon Power Plant will hurt California's climate initiative and ratepayers.
An entrenched fossil fuel industry is working overtime to shut down nuclear in California forever. Your donation helps CGNP challenge their attack on the environment and on the world our descendants will inherit.