The Los Alamos wildfare is making headlines as concerns rise about damage to the nuclear lab. Wildfires are more predictable (brush,dry,summer) than earthquakes as in Fukushima,Japan.The question that the rest of the world is asking is if Americans and Japanese are scrambling to deal with natural disasters and nuclerar installations then what about us?
This is a legitimate concern and a critical "tipping" point for the nuclear power industry with the Germans having decided to shut down nuclear power plants by 2022 and not take any risks, seeing the Japanese was enough for the Germans.
However, nuclear energy is currently at 14% of the energy mix and given it's environmental advantages can do much better. That is, if the risks are managed and folks talk about their risk management plans frequently and frankly. People don't understand nuclear power and the industry treating risks and contingency plans as taboo topics doesn't help. In new product parlance, this is a post-launch problem, and the nuclear power industry needs to take up the operating plant safety issues -upfront.Since Chernobyl the world has totally changed with the Internet and constant sharing of news and silence particularly when things are going well - is a lost opportunity to build support for the industry.