Pat Shingleton for Friday, April 26, 2013

Two things that can’t be denied to a nuclear reactor are power and water. Electric Light and Power reports the 9.0 earthquake at the Fukushima plant in Japan, causing three meltdowns in 2011, was a game changer. Last month, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission charged the Tennessee Valley Authority had failed to adequately protect the Sequoyah and Watts Bar nuclear plants from the potential for failure of earthen dams upstream. Officials contend a monster flood could cover electrical connections and pumps, preventing the cooling of reactors. Even though the NRC cited TVA with six violations, measures have been implemented to protect the plants against dam failure in the event of a possible “maximum flood.” In 2010, Nashville was inundated with record flooding that precipitated the investigation. Fastcast: Nice.