After the quake and Tsunami hit Japan, a lot of people are standing up against the nuclear power. And on one level or another you can say I'm one of them. However I need to confess that I wasn't strongly against nuclear power until all this happened. I was rather generous to it. I always thought it is some sort of necessary evil.
I alway thought we need to shift to renewable energy. But I was also told that the cost of nuclear power plant is much cheeper than other options. And I didn't want to give up power produced by it. I didn't want to imagine a world without a fridge, aircon nor iPhone.
And I believed that nuclear power plant is not that dangerous. I was naive enough to beleive what authorities announced. Even after the Chernobyl, I didn't take it seriously. I just thought "Yeah, that's the way of USSR. They used to make fighter jet with vacuum tubes. Outdated technologies. Moreover, they don't care much of peoples' lives. We are fine in Japan".
It must be a terrible prejudice. But that's exactly how I thought at the moment. And now I understand that I was totally wrong.
I hear some people outside Japan saying, " It was a terrible accident. I'm really sorry for the victims. But we don't have quake nor Tsunami here. And we still need nuclear power". I don't blame who think in this manner. It is exactly the same manner I thought. "Japan is different from USSR".
Some people say "The nuclear power plant in Fukushima is totally out-of-dated technology. Ours are different". Yes, that's true. Fukushima ones were designed more than 40 years ago by GE. However there is one thing that is not different from any single nuclear power plant in the world.
Once anything serious happened, there's nothing we can do. There's not a single clue to solve any problem. With regards to this, nothing has changed since the Chernobyl in 1986. And the cost we need to pay for it is enormous. Almost infinite.
And who can guarantee nothing will happen? Terrorism? Meteorite? Or Human error? Who knows? The only thing I can tell you for sure is that once it happened nobody can cover the full cost.
Yes, if nothing happens nuclear power is one of the most cost effective power. But you need to understand that it is effective in exchange of the possibility of ruining your country thoroughly.
The damage we are experiencing is much more than you are imaging. I hope the world will take the lesson of Fukushima seriously.