Columbia, SC — While he claims himself a safety expert, a peek behind the curtain reveals David Lochbaum, director of the nuclear safety project with the Union of Concerned Scientists, has not done real work on nuclear power in decades (“Nuclear safety expert pushes to upgrade S.C. atomic plants,” The State, March 19). His main job is to talk to the media about how bad nuclear reactors, the electric utilities and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission are.
While it takes large teams of engineers for nuclear plant operations and the NRC to run and regulate these plants, Lochbaum can single-handedly provide pronouncements about safety. Running a nuclear plant often utilizes complex computer simulations, but the Union of Concerned Scientists seems to be able to conjure its conclusions like magic from thin air.
Certainly there are upgrades to nuclear plants that should come from careful analysis of Fukushima, but maybe those decisions should come from folks who spend the time and effort to understand the technology.
Travis W. Knight