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Japan's Quake & the Future of Nuclear Power

Collide-a-ScapeBy Keith KloorMarch 14, 2011 7:25 PM


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The news out of Japan keeps getting worse, and the images are heartrending. The situation with the nuclear reactors continue to unfold in an alarming manner. For those trying to grasp the technical side of that story, I found this write-up in Nature quite helpful. Most of the news media coverage right now is understandably focused on Japan, but at some point in the U.S. we'll see more stories like this one in Science:

"This [Japanese] earthquake is going to be the benchmark for the Pacific Northwest when the Cascadia fault breaks," says seismologist John Vidale of the University of Washington, Seattle. "We know that it can have an earthquake of this magnitude. It's a question of when, not if.

What's happened in Japan this past week also has huge implication for U.S. energy policy, and, as a subset of that, the climate change debate.

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