The nuclear and radiological (RN) threats facing the United States and world are constantly evolving and have grown more complex and complicated since the end of the Cold War.  However, the simple reality is that the risks that confront us today are evolving faster than our multilayered responses.

Nuclear terrorism and Nuclear Power Plant accidents like Fukushima, Chernobyl and Three Mile Island catastrophes are the most serious danger the world is facing.

Terrorists are determined to attack us again—with weapons of mass destruction. Advances in nuclear technology and the means of delivering nuclear weapons have created new opportunities for terrorists. Osama bin Laden al Qaeda has said that obtaining these weapons and perpetrating another “Hiroshima” are their “religious duties”. The Congress Commission on the Prevention of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism believes that unless the world community acts decisively and with great urgency, it is more likely than not that a weapon of mass destruction will be used in a terrorist attack somewhere in the world within the next five years.

The 2011 tsunami and resulting nuclear reactor incident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan has many emergency managers reevaluating our approaches for preventing, protecting and responding to nuclear and radiological disasters in the U.S., and how to mitigate such events.
The accidents such as the core meltdown of the nuclear reactor at Three Mile Island, the catastrophic reactor meltdown at the Chernobyl and recent nuclear reactor incident in Japan reminds us that radiation disasters resulting from manmade or natural causes can happen without notice, unexpectedly and with dramatic catastrophic consequences. The bitter truth is that the growing interest in expanding the number of nuclear power plants in the USA and world tell us that the probability and frequency of the nuclear and radiological accidents will only increase.

 

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