Sunday, September 18, 2011

Media links

Nuclear technology, or nuclear power to be more exact, has been the subject of concern, both to those who see it as a viable source of energy and to those who see it as a potential menace. Two such debates have taken place recently, one using the television as media, the other using radio as the media. Below are the links, respectively.
With Dr Helen Caldicott of Australia on nuclear addiction in Asia - AlJazeera 101 East programme. The programme starts with a coverage of nuclear power in Indonesia.

With Mr Gurmit Singh of Malaysia on nuclear power programme in Malaysia in Current Affairs, BFM 89.9 fm business radio station. The programme is conducted in BFM89.9 studio in response to the government's decision on nuclear power programme in Malaysia.
Do leave your comments at the linked site or here.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Full acceptance -an impossibility

After several decades of service in producing electricity nuclear energy is still nowhere near becoming a darling of the public. Public acceptance has become a permanent must do, must have program for nuclear power activities; both in countries with and without nuclear in their electricity mix.
Why, one may wonder, is that so. Has not the contribution be seen, or has it not been made visible enough? Even in countries with nuclear power program, the percentage of opposition are sizeable. We can't expect everyone to be of the same view - hence they will always be the three groups: the yes, no, and may be groups. The question for newcomer countries therefore is: what is the percentage abundance of each of the group in the population thst is safe for making a concrete decision to go nuclear.
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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Alternative Energy

Finally, nuclear power is officially mentioned as one of the energy mix for Malaysia in the Tenth Malaysia Plan (10MP), which was presented in the Parliament, Thursday, 10 June. It is interesting to note that, rightly so, it is branded as an 'alternative' source of energy, different from the more frequently mentioned 'renewable' energy.
In fact there ought to be another class, which I call 'replenishable' energy source to which bio fuel, biomass, refused derived fuel (RDF), and other bio-based fuel should be categorized. They are generally regarded as renewable, which in the true sense of the word, they are not. Solar, hydro, wind, wave, and geothermal are truly renewable.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Cultural factors in nuclear power program..

That nuclear power is a safe and viable energy source seems to gain the agreement of many. Chernobyl and Three Mile Island have been mentioned less and less as reasons for not going nuclear. So as Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the 65th anniversary is just a month away. At least that part is gaining acceptance. Even current President of the Malaysian Nature Society, that share the same abbreviation MNS with the Malaysian Nuclear Society, admitted that nuclear energy is a way to go. That he said after being briefed and learnt a bit more on the technology he began to see its merit.
The government decision to introduce nuclear power program was debated in the parliament yesterday. The argument against nuclear power this time took a different dimension. The question is can we, Malaysians, handle it since some of the even mundane projects ended up disastrously. Ignoring the success stories like Petronas Twin Towers, KL Tower, SMART Tunnel, Penang bridge, the collapsed stadium in Terengganu was mentioned as a case in point. That I believe, was a case of over generalizing an exception.
Where there is no will, there is no way...

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Step ahead for nuclear power program...

With the 2021 announcement it can be said that part of the battle to convince the government on the need to act now for nuclear power program in Malaysia has been won - if we can call it a 'battle;' afterall who is at war?
It is now time to move ahead. Yes, a lot more news from around the world we want to share and pass on to each other. It is also comforting, especially so in the not so distant past. But now is time to move ahead. Perhaps sharing ideas on the next best action, brainstorming in the web as it were, could be efforts better spent.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Nuclear power for Malaysia..

The public want to participate, they want to be heard, and they responded. The Letters section of the New Straits Times, Monday, 10 May carries both the pros, cons, and the yes but with conditions opinions. This posting carries the response from the Malaysian Nuclear Society (click image to read).

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Never Ending Debate...

The announcement by Energy, Green Technology, and Water Minister that Malaysia is earnestly planning to have its first nuclear power plant operating in 2021 (see previous posting), as expected, initiates the usual response from those opposing the idea of having nuclear power plant in the country. This newsreport seems to be the starter.
Normally this type of response is the first that we see or read; as if it is programmed to automatically react, like reflect actions, to that kind of announcement.
Chernobyl has never been left out as an exemplary danger we would be facing. It is pictured as a certainty. That lessons have been learned and nuclear reactors are getting safer do not seem to make sense. That other countries have been operating tens of nuclear reactors safely seems to be conveniently forgotten.
Japan, the country that experienced first hand the effects of the bombs, not once, but twice, is not shying away from it. It is now 30 percent nuclear electricity. The Repbulic of Korea is 40 percent nuclear electricity. The world is 14 percent nuclear electricity. These facts are conveniently forgotten as well.