Two Weeks Since 6 People Were Killed by Natural Gas Explosion


In an event that has already faded into the dim and ancient memory of our media, two weeks ago there was a catastrophic explosion at a natural-gas-fired powerplant under construction in Connecticut.

Six people were killed and many more were injured. A $1B development was destroyed.

I can’t help but compare and contrast “clean and safe natural gas” to “dirty and dangerous nuclear power”….

Hmmm, how many people have been killed by civilian nuclear power plant accidents in the United States?

None.

But lots of people get killed by natural gas explosions and coal mining accidents, to say nothing for the tens of thousands slowly killed by the emissions of burning coal.

Just out of curiosity, I decided to peruse some of my favorite anti-nuclear, pro-renewable websites and blogs, to see how they responded to the disaster in Connecticut, and to see if they showed some consistency by calling on a ban on natural gas just as they continually call on a ban on nuclear energy.

My first stop: Joe Romm and his blog “Climate Progress”.

Let’s see what Joe has said since February 7th. Now remember, Joe writes a lot since he gets paid to blog by his “non-profit” employer. Since February 7th, Joe has written more than 60 posts, and NOT ONE of them has been about the disaster in Connecticut.

But he found time to write one about the incomprehensibly miniscule tritium leak from the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant, with the obligatory Homer Simpson cartoon thrown in for good measure.

He also found time to mock Bill Gates for asking for an energy miracle, probably since Gates thinks that miracle will be found in nuclear power.

Amazing, Joe. You have time to strain at tritium, but you swallow the natural gas disaster without a mention. Truly amazing.

What about the Sierra Club?

Neither their “Compass” blog nor the personal blog of their head Carl Pope found time to mention the natural gas disaster in the last two weeks. Must not have been that important, I guess.

Then I get to Greenpeace.

Bless their brain-dead little hearts, they said something. Wedged between numerous posts burning with anger and hatred against nuclear energy, was this one little nugget. Michelle Frey, nine days after the disaster, mentions a “chemical blast” and calls on the government for better “chemical security legislation”. Bless her green little heart, she wants the government to make things safer.

You know, like the Nuclear Regulatory Agency is supposed to do for nuclear power plants.

So the score is: Joe Romm, 0; Sierra Club, 0; Greenpeace, 1. And I’m not even taking points away for all the anti-nuclear crap they wrote in the meantime.

On the other hand, the pro-nuclear blogosphere has been ready and responsive on this topic.

Stephen Packard has a great new piece up on natural gas.

Rod Adams has written three pieces worthy of mention:

Is Shale Gas Potential Being Overestimated?

Targeted Marketing By Clean Skies Foundation – DC Metro Capitol South Station

Sometimes The Best Defense is a Good Offense – Comparing Tritium Leaks to a Methane Leak

The anti-nuclear, “environmentalist” movement continues to lose all credibility based on how they ignore this tragedy.

Comments

comments


1 Reply to "Two Weeks Since 6 People Were Killed by Natural Gas Explosion"

  • drbuzz0
    March 9, 2010 (8:05 am)
    Reply

    Hi Kirk -Thanks for the link and the kind words. I live in Connecticut so obviously there's been tremendous local coverage. Amazingly still, there really has not bee a lot of outrage over the circumstances, which have become more and more clear to have been very poorly managed. This was not an unforeseeable freak event. The gas was vented near the building, almost inside it, in an enclosed area. Compared to the amount of concern when a nuclear plant has a steam leak or something…Let me also add something: The blast was absolutely enormous. Just huge. It must have been tens of tons tnt equivalent at least. I believe what happened was an enormous cloud of lingering gas ignited.I heard and felt it. It was like a sudden rush of air and a very deep, almost inaudible thud. I was about 15 miles away.I went up to the area. I wasn't able to get very close to the power plant, but I was able to get to an area of the river it is built on where the plant is just up around the bend. From where I was I could see up the sides of the valley.What I saw in the area is something I've never seen in person before. All the trees and vegetation had a wind-swept look to them, leaning away from the area of the power plant. A slight lean where the branches were all pushed to one side, becoming less and less dramatic as you look further away and all pointing toward the plant.It was like Deja Vu, because I've seen this before. Not in person, of course, but it looked like the palm trees of Bikini Lagoon or the trees brought to the Nevada test Site or even the Tunguska Event. The trees outside the blast area were not severely damaged, but all blown to one side.The fact that six were killed seems almost mercifully low. The concussion from this thing, as it swept across the valley and up the side was enormous. It may have just been luck that the workers on the site that day were mostly in areas that must have offered some shelter from the enormous overpressure.Also, the power plant is at least several hundred yards from any homes. Good thing too, because even at those distances, windows were broken.


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