"Vermont Yankee the worst security rating among the nation's 103 [nuclear] reactors"

heartsurgeon

Diamond Member
Aug 18, 2001
4,260
0
0
Interesting article linky about how Gov. Dean handles security issues in the Vermont nuclear power scene.

I feel safer already knowing he's going to replace Bush.
 

DealMonkey

Lifer
Nov 25, 2001
13,136
1
0
More conservative squealing about so much nothing.

FEMA: Since 1980, each utility that owns a commercial nuclear power plant in the United States has been required to have both an onsite and offsite emergency response plan as a condition of obtaining and maintaining a license to operate that plant. Onsite emergency response plans are approved by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). Offsite plans (which are closely coordinated with the utility's onsite emergency response plan) are evaluated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and provided to the NRC, who must consider the FEMA findings when issuing or maintaining a license.
It's ultimately a federal responsibility to ensure safety/security at individual nuclear power plants. If the Vermont Yankee was so unsafe or insecure, the NRC or FEMA should have revoked or denied its license.
 

Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
49,397
11,552
136
Misleading propraganda thinly disguised as news. I wonder who paid for it? The Feds are responsible for nuclear power plan security, not the states.

You oughta stick to your patients, heartsurgeon, where you actually know something...
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,383
1,013
126
It's ultimately a federal responsibility to ensure safety/security at individual nuclear power plants. If the Vermont Yankee was so unsafe or insecure, the NRC or FEMA should have revoked or denied its license.
This is true, however, ensuring an adequate disaster response plan for VT is within the governor's realm of responsibilities. I agree though that this is a rather weak reed to attack Dean with, it's sorta like saying "Aha! You forgot to create a fire escape plan for your family home and check the batteries in your smoke detector! You're unfit to be President!"
 

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Originally posted by: Vic
Misleading propraganda thinly disguised as news. I wonder who paid for it? The Feds are responsible for nuclear power plan security, not the states.

You oughta stick to your patients, heartsurgeon, where you actually know something...
"The NRC has primary responsibility for safety at Vermont Yankee. But Vermont laws required an active state role by creating a panel to review security and performance and requiring plant operators to set aside money for the state to use in the event of a nuclear disaster."

;)
 

chess9

Elite member
Apr 15, 2000
7,748
0
0
Three of my friends are nuclear engineers with responsibility for safety and compliance. Two of them do it as consultants and one at a plant. I haven't spoken to them in about 6 months, but I doubt much has changed. All three of them are some of the most detail oriented and demanding people I've met. I wouldn't want to be asleep at the controls when any one of them walks in. One is a blond woman who makes Anne Coulter seem like Mother Teresa. :)

Safety at these plants is a very high priority since TMI and a string of problems in the '80's. The nuclear industry knows that the only way they will get many (if ANY) new plants to be built is to demonstrate the long term safety of nuclear power. The NRC, since taking over responsibility from its predecessor, has slowly improved its inspections I am told. Furthermore, compliance to federal regulations among nuclear power operators is much higher than at coal fired plants, by somewhat strained analogy. (I borrowed it so my apologies.)

So, the worst plant today is not as bad, probably, as the best plant in 1980. Just a thought. :)

This is almost as bad as the Laura Bush poem. :) Diggin' deep, eh HS?

-Robert

 

chess9

Elite member
Apr 15, 2000
7,748
0
0
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
 

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Originally posted by: chess9
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
I'm not sure I understand your arguments. States oversee and manage a lot more complex stuff than the security, safety, and compliance of a nuclear power plant. Just because a nuclear plant it fairly complex doesn't mean it is THE most complex thing, nor does it mean we can't have the same engineers that the feds have or the same former NRC members that other states use to give them plans for their reactors and plants. In this world today it is easy to find a consultant with experience in anything.
 

tnitsuj

Diamond Member
May 22, 2003
5,446
0
76
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: chess9
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
I'm not sure I understand your arguments. States oversee and manage a lot more complex stuff than the security, safety, and compliance of a nuclear power plant. Just because a nuclear plant it fairly complex doesn't mean it is THE most complex thing, nor does it mean we can't have the same engineers that the feds have or the same former NRC members that other states use to give them plans for their reactors and plants. In this world today it is easy to find a consultant with experience in anything.

All that costs money and is a duplication of effort particularly in a small state such as Vermont.

The actual security violations listed in this article are in practice unrelated to state governments in any plant in the country. I worked with a local task force at the Calvert Cliffs nuclear power plant here in MD and the types of screw ups and laxnesss presented in that article are the responsibility of the utility and the NRC. The state has nothing to do with it.

The other portions about funding for disatser preparedness is seperate and has little to do with security per say.
 

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: chess9
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
I'm not sure I understand your arguments. States oversee and manage a lot more complex stuff than the security, safety, and compliance of a nuclear power plant. Just because a nuclear plant it fairly complex doesn't mean it is THE most complex thing, nor does it mean we can't have the same engineers that the feds have or the same former NRC members that other states use to give them plans for their reactors and plants. In this world today it is easy to find a consultant with experience in anything.

All that costs money and is a duplication of effort particularly in a small state such as Vermont.

The actual security violations listed in this article are in practice unrelated to state governments in any plant in the country. I worked with a local task force at the Calvert Cliffs nuclear power plant here in MD and the types of screw ups and laxnesss presented in that article are the responsibility of the utility and the NRC. The state has nothing to do with it.

The other portions about funding for disatser preparedness is seperate and has little to do with security per say.
"But Vermont laws required an active state role by creating a panel to review security and performance and requiring plant operators to set aside money for the state to use in the event of a nuclear disaster."

Vermont made the law not me. Secondly, it requires a panel to review security and performance. Where was that panel and who populated it. I don't think a secondary oversight committee is a bad idea, especially in the face of cuts to the NRC and the like. It may be the responsibility of the NRC and the utility, but the state has an obligation to protect its citizens and property.
 

tnitsuj

Diamond Member
May 22, 2003
5,446
0
76
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: chess9
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
I'm not sure I understand your arguments. States oversee and manage a lot more complex stuff than the security, safety, and compliance of a nuclear power plant. Just because a nuclear plant it fairly complex doesn't mean it is THE most complex thing, nor does it mean we can't have the same engineers that the feds have or the same former NRC members that other states use to give them plans for their reactors and plants. In this world today it is easy to find a consultant with experience in anything.

All that costs money and is a duplication of effort particularly in a small state such as Vermont.

The actual security violations listed in this article are in practice unrelated to state governments in any plant in the country. I worked with a local task force at the Calvert Cliffs nuclear power plant here in MD and the types of screw ups and laxnesss presented in that article are the responsibility of the utility and the NRC. The state has nothing to do with it.

The other portions about funding for disatser preparedness is seperate and has little to do with security per say.
"But Vermont laws required an active state role by creating a panel to review security and performance and requiring plant operators to set aside money for the state to use in the event of a nuclear disaster."

Vermont made the law not me. Secondly, it requires a panel to review security and performance. Where was that panel and who populated it. I don't think a secondary oversight committee is a bad idea, especially in the face of cuts to the NRC and the like. It may be the responsibility of the NRC and the utility, but the state has an obligation to protect its citizens and property.

Dean did so, the only contention appears to be the level of funding for disaster preparedness in 2002. All of the nuclear power plants in the US have vastly increased security since September 11. All of the actual violations (not increased funding and oversight that is as yet undocmented) were committed by people outside of his control and who will never be under the control of the states.

"

Carson acknowledged there were weaknesses before 2002 in Vermont's nuclear preparedness, and /b Dean moved quickly afterward to place state troopers and National Guardsman at the plant, distribute radiation pills to civilians, demand a federal no-fly zone over the plant to prevent an aerial attack, and increase emergency preparedness funding.
/b


"As many have said before, hindsight is 20-20 and no one could have predicted what could have happened on a terrible day in September 2001," Carson said.

"In retrospect, every state in the entire country could have been safer. The important thing is after Governor Dean recognized these vulnerabilities, he took swift, bold steps to make things better," Carson said.

State Auditor Ready, a Democrat and Dean backer, agreed things improved after her critical 2002 report and that security tests this year showed Vermont Yankee was safer. "Once Governor Dean got that report there was swift and thorough action," she said.

But even after Ready's report recommended the state's nuclear preparedness spending triple from $400,000 to $1.2 million, Dean budgeted only half the increase."
 

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: chess9
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
I'm not sure I understand your arguments. States oversee and manage a lot more complex stuff than the security, safety, and compliance of a nuclear power plant. Just because a nuclear plant it fairly complex doesn't mean it is THE most complex thing, nor does it mean we can't have the same engineers that the feds have or the same former NRC members that other states use to give them plans for their reactors and plants. In this world today it is easy to find a consultant with experience in anything.

All that costs money and is a duplication of effort particularly in a small state such as Vermont.

The actual security violations listed in this article are in practice unrelated to state governments in any plant in the country. I worked with a local task force at the Calvert Cliffs nuclear power plant here in MD and the types of screw ups and laxnesss presented in that article are the responsibility of the utility and the NRC. The state has nothing to do with it.

The other portions about funding for disatser preparedness is seperate and has little to do with security per say.
"But Vermont laws required an active state role by creating a panel to review security and performance and requiring plant operators to set aside money for the state to use in the event of a nuclear disaster."

Vermont made the law not me. Secondly, it requires a panel to review security and performance. Where was that panel and who populated it. I don't think a secondary oversight committee is a bad idea, especially in the face of cuts to the NRC and the like. It may be the responsibility of the NRC and the utility, but the state has an obligation to protect its citizens and property.

Dean did so, the only contention appears to be the level of funding for disaster preparedness in 2002. All of the nuclear power plants in the US have vastly increased security since September 11. All of the actual violations (not increased funding and oversight that is as yet undocmented) were committed by people outside of his control and who will never be under the control of the states.

"

Carson acknowledged there were weaknesses before 2002 in Vermont's nuclear preparedness, and /b Dean moved quickly afterward to place state troopers and National Guardsman at the plant, distribute radiation pills to civilians, demand a federal no-fly zone over the plant to prevent an aerial attack, and increase emergency preparedness funding.
/b


"As many have said before, hindsight is 20-20 and no one could have predicted what could have happened on a terrible day in September 2001," Carson said.

"In retrospect, every state in the entire country could have been safer. The important thing is after Governor Dean recognized these vulnerabilities, he took swift, bold steps to make things better," Carson said.

State Auditor Ready, a Democrat and Dean backer, agreed things improved after her critical 2002 report and that security tests this year showed Vermont Yankee was safer. "Once Governor Dean got that report there was swift and thorough action," she said.

But even after Ready's report recommended the state's nuclear preparedness spending triple from $400,000 to $1.2 million, Dean budgeted only half the increase."
When was Dean elected, and when was the Vermont law passed? He should have had it taken care of before 9-11. Every other nuke plant has had tight security before Bin Laden even thought of his plan.

I think this is a minute and silly attack on Dean(this thread) but the point of the article is valid. Dean didn't do something until he was REALLY in the spotlight.
 

tnitsuj

Diamond Member
May 22, 2003
5,446
0
76
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: chess9
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
I'm not sure I understand your arguments. States oversee and manage a lot more complex stuff than the security, safety, and compliance of a nuclear power plant. Just because a nuclear plant it fairly complex doesn't mean it is THE most complex thing, nor does it mean we can't have the same engineers that the feds have or the same former NRC members that other states use to give them plans for their reactors and plants. In this world today it is easy to find a consultant with experience in anything.

All that costs money and is a duplication of effort particularly in a small state such as Vermont.

The actual security violations listed in this article are in practice unrelated to state governments in any plant in the country. I worked with a local task force at the Calvert Cliffs nuclear power plant here in MD and the types of screw ups and laxnesss presented in that article are the responsibility of the utility and the NRC. The state has nothing to do with it.

The other portions about funding for disatser preparedness is seperate and has little to do with security per say.
"But Vermont laws required an active state role by creating a panel to review security and performance and requiring plant operators to set aside money for the state to use in the event of a nuclear disaster."

Vermont made the law not me. Secondly, it requires a panel to review security and performance. Where was that panel and who populated it. I don't think a secondary oversight committee is a bad idea, especially in the face of cuts to the NRC and the like. It may be the responsibility of the NRC and the utility, but the state has an obligation to protect its citizens and property.

Dean did so, the only contention appears to be the level of funding for disaster preparedness in 2002. All of the nuclear power plants in the US have vastly increased security since September 11. All of the actual violations (not increased funding and oversight that is as yet undocmented) were committed by people outside of his control and who will never be under the control of the states.

"

Carson acknowledged there were weaknesses before 2002 in Vermont's nuclear preparedness, and /b Dean moved quickly afterward to place state troopers and National Guardsman at the plant, distribute radiation pills to civilians, demand a federal no-fly zone over the plant to prevent an aerial attack, and increase emergency preparedness funding.
/b


"As many have said before, hindsight is 20-20 and no one could have predicted what could have happened on a terrible day in September 2001," Carson said.

"In retrospect, every state in the entire country could have been safer. The important thing is after Governor Dean recognized these vulnerabilities, he took swift, bold steps to make things better," Carson said.

State Auditor Ready, a Democrat and Dean backer, agreed things improved after her critical 2002 report and that security tests this year showed Vermont Yankee was safer. "Once Governor Dean got that report there was swift and thorough action," she said.

But even after Ready's report recommended the state's nuclear preparedness spending triple from $400,000 to $1.2 million, Dean budgeted only half the increase."
When was Dean elected, and when was the Vermont law passed? He should have had it taken care of before 9-11. Every other nuke plant has had tight security before Bin Laden even thought of his plan.

I think this is a minute and silly attack on Dean(this thread) but the point of the article is valid. Dean didn't do something until he was REALLY in the spotlight.
"Every other nuke plant has had tight security before Bin Laden even thought of his plan. "

Care to back that up? How do you define tight? What metrics are you using to define tight security as compared to the Vermont Plant, and how specifically did Howard Dean contribute to that? How did his actions compare to those of other governors both before and after 9/11? This whole argument has no context.

I drove into Calvert Cliffs with four other people unnanounced in a police car to use thier ranges prior to 9/11 (back in 2000). All terrorists would have had to do would be to steal a car and make up some uniforms to do the same. That is not possible now. All domestic facilities have made changes since September 11.

 

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: tnitsuj
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: chess9
Mill:

Do you think it wise for any state government to have much to do with regulating nuclear power plants? Really, the notion is absurd. Set asides for accidents are one thing. Supervision of safety and compliance is a whole different ball game. You are talking about extremely complex engineering and safety issues. If Dean HAD been intimately involved in that plant I would be aghast. Sheezh, doctors can barely get most diagnoses right, what would they do with that can of worms? :)

-Robert
I'm not sure I understand your arguments. States oversee and manage a lot more complex stuff than the security, safety, and compliance of a nuclear power plant. Just because a nuclear plant it fairly complex doesn't mean it is THE most complex thing, nor does it mean we can't have the same engineers that the feds have or the same former NRC members that other states use to give them plans for their reactors and plants. In this world today it is easy to find a consultant with experience in anything.

All that costs money and is a duplication of effort particularly in a small state such as Vermont.

The actual security violations listed in this article are in practice unrelated to state governments in any plant in the country. I worked with a local task force at the Calvert Cliffs nuclear power plant here in MD and the types of screw ups and laxnesss presented in that article are the responsibility of the utility and the NRC. The state has nothing to do with it.

The other portions about funding for disatser preparedness is seperate and has little to do with security per say.
"But Vermont laws required an active state role by creating a panel to review security and performance and requiring plant operators to set aside money for the state to use in the event of a nuclear disaster."

Vermont made the law not me. Secondly, it requires a panel to review security and performance. Where was that panel and who populated it. I don't think a secondary oversight committee is a bad idea, especially in the face of cuts to the NRC and the like. It may be the responsibility of the NRC and the utility, but the state has an obligation to protect its citizens and property.

Dean did so, the only contention appears to be the level of funding for disaster preparedness in 2002. All of the nuclear power plants in the US have vastly increased security since September 11. All of the actual violations (not increased funding and oversight that is as yet undocmented) were committed by people outside of his control and who will never be under the control of the states.

"

Carson acknowledged there were weaknesses before 2002 in Vermont's nuclear preparedness, and /b Dean moved quickly afterward to place state troopers and National Guardsman at the plant, distribute radiation pills to civilians, demand a federal no-fly zone over the plant to prevent an aerial attack, and increase emergency preparedness funding.
/b


"As many have said before, hindsight is 20-20 and no one could have predicted what could have happened on a terrible day in September 2001," Carson said.

"In retrospect, every state in the entire country could have been safer. The important thing is after Governor Dean recognized these vulnerabilities, he took swift, bold steps to make things better," Carson said.

State Auditor Ready, a Democrat and Dean backer, agreed things improved after her critical 2002 report and that security tests this year showed Vermont Yankee was safer. "Once Governor Dean got that report there was swift and thorough action," she said.

But even after Ready's report recommended the state's nuclear preparedness spending triple from $400,000 to $1.2 million, Dean budgeted only half the increase."
When was Dean elected, and when was the Vermont law passed? He should have had it taken care of before 9-11. Every other nuke plant has had tight security before Bin Laden even thought of his plan.

I think this is a minute and silly attack on Dean(this thread) but the point of the article is valid. Dean didn't do something until he was REALLY in the spotlight.
"Every other nuke plant has had tight security before Bin Laden even thought of his plan. "

Care to back that up? How do you define tight? What metrics are you using to define tight security as compared to the Vermont Plant, and how specifically did Howard Dean contribute to that? How did his actions compare to those of other governors both before and after 9/11? This whole argument has no context.

I drove into Calvert Cliffs with four other people unnanounced in a police car to use thier ranges prior to 9/11 (back in 2000). All terrorists would have had to do would be to steal a car and make up some uniforms to do the same. That is not possible now. All domestic facilities have made changes since September 11.
Did the Vermont plant not rank last? That is how I can say the other places had tighter security. Howard Dean was the governor and responsible for executing the law of Vermont. I still haven't seen when he executed the law to create the oversight board. I don't care about Calvert Cliffs because we are talking about Vermont's plant and how it ranked last. I'm sure there were changes after 9/11 but that law was on the books before 9/11 and Dean didn't take action until after 9/11.
 

maluckey

Platinum Member
Jan 31, 2003
2,933
0
71
All states have a regulatory part in the power plants on their soil. Sure the Federal Laws are sometimes stricter than the stae laws regarding access and security, but to think that the government of Vermont had no part in the operations of this plant is absurd. The vermont regulatory branch was a failure. Did they fix it? Sure...after the fact. Could anyone have forseen the problems at the plant? Absolutely. Why did they change? 9/11. Without 9/11 would they have changed before disater struck? Who knows? Is it important to think about things before they fail? Absolutely.



 

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Let me give you a better reference Justin. Anniston Army Depot here in Alabama is of course a federal facility and they built an incinerator to destroy chemical weapons. Who has primary responsibility? The federal government and the military of course. They are in charge of the hiring, the safety, etc. However, ADEM(our EPA) and our government have closely monitored them, and ADEM has shut them down due to violations or safety problems several times. Now Alabama's average income and taxation is well below that of Vermont, but making sure that Incinerator doesn't leak or have a terrorist attack is NOT just the responsibility of the Feds. It is also the responsibility of the State and they are taking their jobs very seriously. They have constant inspections and monitor the facility very closely. Why didn't Dean do the same for a Nuclear power plant? A facility that is just as dangerous if not MORE dangerous than a chemical weapons incinerator? Was it because the people of Vermont didn't really know? Because they were kept in the dark? Some people knew; those protestors knew, but where was Dean or the other Governors to listen?

You decide.
 

maluckey

Platinum Member
Jan 31, 2003
2,933
0
71
Another example is when Raytheon, here in Pine Bluff Arsenal, AR, was contracted to destroy chemical weapons. Raytheon had to coordinate with DEA, and the state of Arkansas. In this case, the state had rules that were tougher than the federal guidelines concerning transportation and possession glasswares, and transportation of certain chemicals used in the destruction of the weapons. So they got DEA approval easier than state approval in this case.
 

heartsurgeon

Diamond Member
Aug 18, 2001
4,260
0
0
Misleading propraganda thinly disguised as news
On being asked about George W. Bush and 9/11, Howard Dean said:
The most interesting theory that I've heard so far?which is nothing more than a theory, it can't be proved?is that he was warned ahead of time by the Saudis.? Now, who knows what the real situation is?
are you referring to Gov. Dean's pronouncements, or the Associated Press article I sited..i wasn't sure which you meant....

 

busmaster11

Platinum Member
Mar 4, 2000
2,875
0
0
The ratio of unsecured or undersecured targets vs the number of such targets exploited is probably 1,000,000,000 to 1. If we're going to start headhunting the list of targets which weren't properly secured in the past, good luck. Better start now.

IMO, this is pretty darn weak...
 

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