The federal government began incorporating the social cost of carbon in climate-related regulations in 2010, factoring it into requirements for the fuel economy of cars and trucks, the levels of air pollution from power plants, and the energy efficiency of consumer appliances.
In a conventional nuclear reactor, the main line of defense against a meltdown is the fuel control rod, which power plant operators use to control the fission rate in the core.
If you could press a button to merge your mind with an artificial intelligence computer—expanding your brain power, your memory, and your creative capacity—would you take the leap?“I would press it in a microsecond,” says Sebastian Thrun, who previously led Stanford University’s AI Lab. Turning yourself into a cyborg might sound like pure sci-fi, but recent progress in AI, neural implants , and wearable gadgets make it seem increasingly imaginable.
Operated by NuScale Power, an Oregon-based energy startup, this prototype reactor represents a new chapter in the conflict-ridden, politically bedeviled saga of nuclear power plants .NuScale’s reactor won’t need massive cooling towers or sprawling emergency zones.
Employees at a Nuclear Power Plant Mined Cryptocurrency on the Job. Cryptojackers—the hackers who insert themselves into networks to mine cryptocurrency—have targeted critical infrastructure before .The bad news is that they exposed the plant to the broader internet, which is understandably not ideal for high-security nuclear plants.
Government statements and reports indicate that the blackout stems from a problem at the enormous Guri dam hydropower plant in eastern Venezuela, which generates 80 percent of the country's electricity.
That’s going to require every nation to make changes, as well as individual cities, states and businesses.“It will require things that are more aggressive, like shutting down existing power plants and by 2030, we probably need to reduce global coal power production by 70 or 80 percent,” says Nathan Hultman, director of the Center for Global Sustainability at the University of Maryland.Hultman, who worked on climate issues in the Obama White House, says the solutions may be politically impossible for now.
But Lochbaum points out that history proves such preparation might not be enough.In its 2012 post-Fukushima review, Florida Power & Light told the NRC that flood protections at its St. Lucie plant on South Hutchinson Island were adequate, despite failing to discover six electrical conduits with missing seals in one of the emergency core cooling systems.
And in August, the agency proposed replacing the rule on carbon dioxide pollution from coal-fired power plants with a weaker one that would allow far more global-warming emissions to flow unchecked from the nation’s smokestacks.“They’re taking them down, one by one,” said Janet McCabe, the E.P.A.’s top climate and clean-air regulator in the Obama administration.Officials from the E.P.A., the Interior Department and the White House did not respond to emails and telephone calls seeking comment.Industry groups praised the expected changes.
The formulas are complex, but the bottom line is that reducing the emphasis on health makes it tougher to justify a rule.Last week the Trump administration took a crucial step toward de-emphasizing the life and health benefits in this calculus when the Environmental Protection Agency said it would rethink a major regulation that restricts mercury emissions by coal-burning power plants.
That rule would have restricted coal plants’ emission of a different pollutant: carbon dioxide, one of the chief causes of global warming.At the time the Obama administration put forth the mercury regulations, which took more than 20 years to formulate, E.P.A. officials estimated they would save thousands of lives and return economic and health benefits many times their estimated $9.6 billion annual cost.While owners of coal plants fought the rule in the courts, most have since complied with regulation.