Last week on Sea Change Radio, we heard from someone who, despite the recent nuclear disaster in Japan, defended the continued exploration of nuclear power as part of the new energy equation. This week, we’ll hear an alternative perspective. Our first guest is solar power executive Danny Kennedy, who thinks that nuclear power is more of a problem than a solution, and that investment in renewable energy is a more practical, safer and far more reasonable approach.
Then, Sea Change Radio host Alex Wise speaks with geophysicist Ben Brooks, a specialist in earthquake science who works with breakthrough technology in seismology and GPS. He explains what scientists now understand about the different types of earthquakes, and talks about the West Coast’s vulnerability to the type of quake that recently struck Northern Japan.
The meltdown at the nuclear power plant in Fukushima is enlivening discussions on alternative energy around dinner tables and across debate platforms everywhere. People who call themselves environmentalists tend to agree on the need to curtail human reliance on fossil fuels, including the pervasive use of coal in generating electricity. That same level of consensus cannot be found, however, on the topic of nuclear power. Nuclear energy and environmentalism have traditionally been thought of as incongruous, yet our guest today on Sea Change Radio offers a logic to solve the paradox. Jesse Jenkins, the Director of Energy and Climate Policy at the Breakthrough Institute, a think tank that advocates for innovative solutions to energy and climate challenges, believes that nuclear power ought to be a significant part of a more sustainable energy plan. Listen as Sea Change Radio host Alex Wise asks him about the risks, real and perceived, and how the catastrophe in Japan affects his views on nuclear power. For more, here’s a piece that Jenkins recently co-wrote for The Atlantic titled Nuclear as Usual: Why Fukushima Will Change Less Than You Think.