“Fukushima: What don’t we know?” on the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

On March 11, when news of the terrible events at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant began to emerge, so did the contrasts: Will this be another Chernobyl? How does this compare with Three Mile Island? Discussions have focused on the communications, as well as technical, differences between these accidents: specifically, how to avoid another Chernobyl or Three Mile Island in terms of disseminating inaccurate information.
Since the disaster, the Bulletin’s experts have reflected on the necessity for journalists and experts to work together to ensure that the most accurate information is delivered to the public. Robert Socolow wrote, “… we scientists have only one job right now — to help governments, journalists, students, and the man and woman on the street understand in what strange ways we have changed their world.” Richard Wilson echoed this: “… one conversation with a reporter is not enough to make a difference in the world. A scientist who wants to engage the public must keep reaching out, correcting mistakes, and pointing reporters in the right direction — even though you never know exactly where they will go, or what approach will be most effective.”

Over the upcoming weeks, the Bulletin will feature experts who will explore what we, the public and media, don’t know about Fukushima Daiichi. We hope this will educate and inspire both citizens and journalists as they reflect on the devastating tragedy.

Continue reading at “Fukushima: What don’t we know?”.

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