Community Calendar

Community Artists Program
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Charlestown

Monday Morning Munchkins
10 a.m. - 11 a.m. Charlestown

GED Preparation Classes
5 p.m. - 8 p.m. Westerly

Monday Night Movie
6 p.m. - 8 p.m. Charlestown

Toddler Art & Gym
9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Westerly

... View all of today's events

Stay Connected

Letter: Thorium — the ‘green’ nuclear alternative

Regarding Jay Lustgarten’s recent letter on May 17, I couldn’t agree more with his antinuclear stance, but with a huge qualifier: AS WE DO IT NOW.

A couple of years ago, I heard about a new book on the topic, which caused my thinking on nuclear energy to completely reverse course. It is “Superfuel,” by Richard Martin. It is in the library system.

In short, at the dawn of the nuclear age, there were two choices about how to proceed: the plutonium / uranium cycle, or with thorium. The former was selected precisely because it could be militarized, although a thorium reactor was built at Oak Ridge which worked perfectly. Thus, this technology is not pie-in-the-sky, always 20 years in the future, like fusion. It is a proven system; indeed, the Chinese are building some right now.

A few points:

• Thorium is an element that is everywhere. There will be no resource wars, because every country has it in abundance.

• The reaction cannot be militarized. If Iran were building thorium reactors, it would have to be for peaceful purposes, and we would not be talking about it. (We should assist other countries around the world to erect these things — climate change respects no borders...)

• They are true breeders, so there is no waste issue.

• The reaction cannot support a meltdown. There can never be a radioactive release like the ones listed by Mr. Lustgarten. (Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, Fukushima)

• Because of this inherent safety, they can be miniaturized, right down to the level of town or even neighborhood reactors. This kind of distributed generation means no further need for all those hideous, and hideously expensive, transmission lines everywhere.

If this is so good, why are we not doing it already?

Easy: there is a lot of money at stake in the status quo, and that money buys lobbyists.

Don’t get me wrong, I love solar and wind and they certainly have their place in the mix, but we can’t ramp them up fast enough to make a real difference. Thorium is the answer.

Don’t take my word for it, read the book. I have done further research, but the book alone is very convincing.

Gabriel Warren


Back to LatestNews
Top Stories of the Week

Early morning fire damages Westerly condo units …
WESTERLY — A fire at the Morningside condominium complex on Apache Drive caused significant damage to at least two units in a four-unit building early … more ...

‘Clan Lab’ checks Westerly fire scene …
WESTERLY — Federal Drug Enforcement Administration personnel arrived here Friday after medical marijuana was found at the scene of a fire at the Morningside condominiums … more ...

Police logs: Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015 …
Westerly Devontay W. Smith, 19, of 43 Garden St., Pawcatuck, was arrested Thursday on a bench warrant issued from 4th District Division Court. Ryan F. … more ...

Westerly High School senior’s ‘Has Been Bowl’ about community, continuity …
WESTERLY — On a beat up and muddy Salvatore J. Augeri Field, former teammates renewed friendships and mentors were born. It’s the exact outcome Drew … more ...

Police logs: Thursday, Nov. 26, 2015 …
Charlestown Stuart J. Stodart, 25, of 100 Scapa Flow Road, was charged Tuesday with assault with intent to commit a felony. Kenneth J. DeRobbio, 36, … more ...