Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I haven't read the book, but I see problems just from your review.
  1. The author is not a scientist. She may be slightly self taught, but she seems to have been trained in law.
  2. "Mutant" effects from radiation exposure are quite subtle as the results of the bombs in Japan have shown. Usually what shows up is statistical changes in cancer rates. This has happened in both cases.
  3. Many species are "resistant" to radiation, but the period of study is too short to know what the long-range effects may be. Actual radiation disease takes a fairly high dose over a short period.
  4. Discussions of safe storage of waste have never been resolved.

As to whether nuclear energy is a "good idea", this seems to be irrelevant. The forces to expand nuclear energy are gathering so much strength that they probably won't be stopped. As the usage increases the probability of accidents will increase and the plants will be sited closer to population centers so the effects of any accident will be larger.

When the next accident happens (say in 20 or 30 years) the world will have become too dependent on nuclear power that dropping it at that point will cause a major disruption. The accidents don't have to be at the plant they can (and have) occurred at the enrichment plants or during transport of fuel or even at storage facilities.

The panic over greenhouse gases is likely to allow for shortcuts in the building of new plants and other corner cutting in the entire process. This is just human nature and the desire for a quick buck, there is no reason to expect that people will act more responsibly in the case of nuclear power.

Policies not Politics
---- Daily Landscape

by rdf (robert.feinman@gmail.com) on Sat Mar 10th, 2007 at 04:17:34 PM EST

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