Post-Tsunami Japan Teaches the World About Energy Within Limits

Earlier this summer, I accompanied a class of renewable energy law students to a home in Vermont that is “off the grid”.  The family lives quite comfortably – television, microwave oven, electric washing machine, sizable refrigerator.  With the exception of a small diesel generator, which they use once or twice a year, they derive all …


Japan Nuclear Update

The NY Times has a very good page showing the current status of each of the six reactors.  All of them remain problems in one way or another, either because of the reactors themselves or the spent fuel.  The Post also has an interactive, featuring an animated presentation.  No one seems to expect a full …


Japan’s Nuclear Reactors, Risk Assessment & Accident Theory

In the wake of Japan’s developing nuclear crisis, people have begun questioning the future of US nuclear policy.  Here is Sen. Lieberman, cautiously arguing for a review of nuclear power safety: I think it calls on us here in the U.S., naturally, not to stop building nuclear power plants but to put the brakes on …


Japan Nuclear Crisis Update

The situation continues to be very dangerous. How bad are things? From the NY Times: The risk of a meltdown spread to a third reactor at a stricken nuclear power plant in Japan on Monday as its cooling systems failed, exposing its fuel rods, only hours after a second explosion at a separate reactor blew …


Notes From Japan

A few environmental observations from my family vacation in Tokyo.  The first is an obvious one:  Tokyo’s public transportation system is a marvel.  Several American cities have admirable subway systems but what is so impressive about Tokyo’s is the sheer area it covers.  It’s the largest subway and train system in the world.  No American …