By Dan Shapley
Fire Erupted At World's Most Powerful Nuclear Power Plant, And Radioactive Water Leaked For updates on this story from Tuesday, see Nuclear Power Plant Owner Surprised By Earthquake In Japan, and U.S. Nuclear Power Plants: Vulnerable To Earthquake?
An earthquake that claimed at least seven lives also caused a fire at the world's most powerful nuclear plant in Japan today. Hundreds of gallons of radioactive water leaked into the Sea of Japan, according to published reports. The radioactivity was slight, but will raise concerns about human exposure nonetheless. Nuclear power is high on the minds of energy policy experts around the world, as the threat of global warming and the drive for energy independence inspire new enthusiasm for nuclear power. But old concerns about waste that lasts for thousands of years, terrorism risk and the threat of radioactive leaks due to mismanagement or natural disaster remain strong. This accident is a reminder that nuclear power is not safe, said Friends of the Earth-U.S. Executive Director Norman Dean, adding: Like the disaster at Chernobyl and near-disaster at Three Mile Island, today''s accident reminds us that nuclear power is hardly the safe panacea its supporters claim it to be. Energy conservation and wind and solar power are cleaner and safer than nuclear power, and they are a better way to fight global warming. Related Story:Earthquake Maps In Real Time
For more on the Japan earthquake, see this Associated Press story.