By Diane Farsetta, Senior Researcher, Center for Media and Democracy.
The following article appeared in the June 2008 issue of The Progressive magazine.
By Victor Gilinsky
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
March 23, 2009
Shortly after I arrived at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)'s headquarters in Washington, D.C., at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, March 28, 1979, I got a call from the commission's emergency center in Bethesda, Md.
The number two reactor at the Three Mile Island nuclear plant in Pennsylvania had declared a general emergency.
There weren't supposed to be serious accidents at nuclear power plants and having to deal with one led to some, let us say, out-of-the-ordinary, and even absurd, behavior.
Three Mile Island Alert Chairman Eric Epstein faces off with Nuclear Energy Institute vice president of communications Scott Peterson in a video debate on the state of the nuclear industry.
The discussion between Epstein and Peterson is moderated by Susan McGinnis of CleanSkies TV, and follows a news presentation of what happened at Three Mile Island's Unit 2 reactor on March 28, 1979.
Epstein emphasizes the unanswered questions haunting the nuclear industry: What to do with the waste, where to find the water to run the plants, and why private investment won't support the industry. Industry advocate Peterson calls the 1979 accident a "controlled release" of radiation and insists the market will support industry growth.
To view the program, go to:
Find the link button to CleanSkies Sunday and then click on the video program on Three Mile Island.
Accident Dose Assessments
Nuclear engineer and long-time industry executive, Arnie Gundersen gives a talk on his calculations of the amount of radiation released during the accident at Three Mile Island. Mr. Gundersen's calculations differ from those of the NRC's and official industry estimates.
By Marlene Lang
Mary Osborn Ouassiai still calls it home. Her house behind the WITF television station building in Swatara Township, Dauphin County, Pa., overlooks a valley that slopes down several miles toward the Susquehanna River.
She can see the cooling towers on Three Mile Island from her driveway; the same driveway she walked across on March 28, 1979 to put her 9-year-old daughter on the school bus. She looks out the same windows she looked out of that day, and the days following, holding her son, 2, and wondering if her family and neighbors were being told the truth about the danger to which they had been exposed.
Testimony of Peter A. Bradford
Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works
Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety
March 24, 2009
I’d like to begin with a review of the status of nuclear power and nuclear regulation the day before the
accident at Three Mile Island. As of that time, the NRC’s licensing process, maligned though it often was,
had issued more licenses than the next five nations combined, though half of the construction permit
recipients did not complete their power plants.
Download Three Mile Island Alert's March 2009 newsletter for a summary of news and a printable list of events coming up in recognition of the 30th anniversary of the nuclear accident at TMI's Unit 2 reactor.
For pdf, open attachment:
February 13, 2009 12:47 pm
The most serious accident in US commercial nuclear power history: people vs. government
By Nicole Back - Staff Writer
After three decades, the debate continues.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission stands by its claim that the most serious accident in US commercial nuclear power history did not cause any physical harm to those who were directly affected.
Hundreds of people lived near Three Mile Island when equipment malfunctions, design related problems and worker errors led to the partial meltdown of the TMI-2 reactor core. Residents insist the US government is lying about what really happened to them.
By Marlene Lang
We have a new secretary of energy; get out of the way. He wants to do in four weeks what the Bush administration did not do in almost four years; get the money out there for developing renewable and more efficient energy.
An actual scientist will be running the energy department show, rather than a military or energy industry head. Steven Chu garnered a Nobel Prize in physics in 1997.
(Harrisburg, Pa) - Three Mile Island Alert, Inc. filed a Petition for
Rulemaking with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) on
April 11, 2007 to extend host school pick-up centers at least five miles
and preferably 10 miles beyond the plume exposure boundary zone of
Three Mile Island. Host-schools are the destination points that children
are transportedto for “safe keeping” until their parents, guardians or
primary caregivers arrive.