US nuclear fuel fire may lead to much larger disaster than Fukushima: Study

A new US study has found that government agencies have undermined the risks to the country’s nuclear safety, warning that a single nuclear fuel fire may lead to a disaster “much greater than [Japan’s] Fukushima.”

If spent fuel at one of America’s dozens of nuclear sites is set on fire, it “could dwarf the horrific consequences of the Fukushima accident,” researchers from Princeton University and the Union of Concerned Scientists cautioned in a study published in the Friday issue of Science Magazine, censuring the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for ignoring the potential danger.

Such a disaster, it said, would lead to “trillion-dollar consequences,” as the hypothetical fire would lead to the contamination of a region larger than the northeast state of New Jersey and compel mass relocations.

For their research article, titled ‘Nuclear safety regulation in the post-Fukushima era,’ the scientists simulated a nightmare…

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