30 03 2011

Wade Allison and the BBC are attempting a take on the public concern with regard to nuclear energy. Apparently the best way is to ridicule fear and smear countries and individuals as nonsensical. It is propaganda against propaganda, so I see little reason to believe either. What Mr Wade did not say is that all his points are based on theories he is unable to prove. Because radiation and its consequences on health cannot be proven so far. We cannot control nuclear reactions properly and we cannot predict the effects on health.

Mr Wade’s analysis is based on empirical evidence. As is often the case, many other problems and links are overlooked. He only states the 43 fatalities directly related to the accident, as reported by the UN. He ignores other reports, critcising the UN that state numbers that reach up to almost a million. The bottom line is, who’s right or wrong? Surely not Mr Wade, that tries to tip the balance to one side. Being a scientist is quite different to being an evangelist, and it bears a hell of a lot of responsibility especially when it relates to peoples’ lives.

Rumor has it that the increase in thyroid cancers in Greece during recent years among the 40+ year olds are due to Chernobyl. Will Mr Wade compensate those people for their health problems and pay the treatments to their health insurances, should such a theory proved right? I doubt it.

Maybe the critics are not right too. Maybe people are over reacting. But that’s normal: we cannot control the thing. The bottom line is: who’s  right when it comes to critical questions regarding science and ethics? The scientists? The contra-scientists? No. The people, and the people alone. So, in the case of nuclear energy (and GM crops, and…) which part of “We Do Not Want It” don’t you get? So get back to your lab, make it stable and try again.

Mr Wade concludes “Some might ask whether I would accept it if it were buried 100 metres under my own house? My answer would be: “Yes, why not?”” This reminds me precisely the attitude of the communists in Greece during the Chernobyl accident: although radiation in the soil was high (we measured it with my father’s Geiger: bushes and grass had high concentration) they ignored the warnings and were eating strawberries – they were even feeding the kids.

Edit: I am not the last one to think this way, it seems…