Wednesday, April 30, 2008

What's the Upside, What's the Downside, What's the Timeframe?

If someone is going to pitch me an idea, those are the questions I have. If a person can make it interesting, interweave the alpha and numeric (or the alpha and beta) in a creative way, all the better, but at bottom it's really only the answers to those three questions that I'll remember.
And don't mess up on the facts! This thought comes to mind because of a brief back-and-forth I had at Environmental Capital re: their post "Going Nuclear: What To Do With the Waste?":

Interesting question.
Ask Sweden.
In the story you linked to in this morning’s Green Ink the fact that 45% of Sweden’s electricity is produced by nukes was nowhere mentioned by The Guardian.
Another 26% is hydro.
When the Brit press gets called on reporting half the story they get grumpy. That’s why there is a place to cathart:

Comment by Climateer - April 29, 2008 at 11:15 am

To which another reader responded:

... And indeed, we should ask Sweden.

They planned to decommission all of their nuclear power plants by 2010.
(Admittedly, they aren’t on schedule for that)
They’ve already shut down 2 plants, and only have a handful of plants left to go.

And of course they have no plans to build new ones.

Comment by David Ahlport - April 29, 2008 at 3:46 pm

You never know when your audience knows something about the subject in question, in this case I knew Mr. Ahlport had made two misstatements of fact and two blatant spin moves in 46 words. So I took on the two that didn't require looking up the exact numbers:

Mr. Ahlport,
Sweden shut down 2 of 12 nukes. Your ‘handful’ remaining = 83%.
The Swedes are “uprating” the existing plants to make up for the loss of the two that were shut down. Reactor upgrades 2008-10 will extend the lives of the plants to 2040-50.
Back to the original question, what to do with the waste-the proposed European long-term repository is in…wait for it…

Cracks me up every time the French sends the train.
Earth Times reported this morning, no train in ‘09.
Trust not the Euro-spin.

Comment by Climateer - April 29, 2008 at 5:25 pm

After I wrote that I checked and it turns out that the two plants that were shut down produced a total of 1200 MWHe and the upgrades (already approved by the government) total 665 MWHe or better than 55%.

I'm sure Mr. Ahlport is a lovely man but any time I see him writing I'm going to have a subconcious twinge and maybe a conscious thought: "Hmm, on Swedish nuclear he appeared to be a spinmeister" and that's how you lose access, without ever knowing why.