Nuclear Power and Public Policy: The Social and Ethical Problems of Fission Technology

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9789027715135
  • Publisher: Springer Netherlands
  • Publication date: 12/1/1982
  • Series: A Pallas Paperback Series
  • Edition description: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1980
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 198
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.42 (d)

Table of Contents

One: Nuclear Technology.- 1. The History of Nuclear Energy.- 2. Government Regulation of Atomic Power.- 3. Fission Generation of Electricity.- 4. Ethical Problems Raised by Nuclear Technology.- Notes.- Two: Reactor Emissions and Equal Protection.- 1. The Controversy over Low-Level Radiation.- 2. Federal Radiation Standards.- 3. Ethical Problems of Radiation Policy.- 3.1. Adherence to the Principle of Utility.- 3.2. Violations of Equal Rights.- 3.3. Confusing What Is Normal with What Is Moral.- 3.4. Failure To Obtain Disinterested Monitoring.- 3.5. Confusing Objective and Subjective Morality.- 3.6. Inconsistent Application of Federal Preemption.- 4. Conclusion.- Notes.- Three: Nuclear Wastes and the Argument from Ignorance.- 1. The Social and Economic Costs of Storing Radioactive Wastes.- 2. Philosophical Errors in Analyses of the Waste Problem.- 2.1. Epistemological Difficulties.- 2.1.1. The Argument from Ignorance.- 2.1.2. Ignoring Monies Budgeted for US Waste Storage.- 2.1.3. The Consequences of Assuming that Nuclear Electricity Is Inexpensive.- 2.2. Ethical Difficulties.- 2.2.1. Violations of Equity.- 2.2.2. The Preclusion of Rational Choice.- 2.2.3. The Acceleration of Social Costs.- 3. Conclusion.- Notes.- Four: Core Melt Catastrophe and Due Process.- 1. The Price-Anderson Act.- 2. Philosophical Difficulties in the Price-Anderson Act.- 2.1. Logical Problems with Public Policy Governing Liability.- 2.1.1. Inconsistency between Damage Estimates and Liability Limits.- 2.1.2. Incompatibility with the Energy Reorganization Act.- 2.2. Methodological Problems with Assessments of Safety.- 2.2.1. Mathematical Assumptions Underlying Accident Probabilities.- 2.2.2. Suppression of Data Regarding Nuclear Hazards.- 2.2.3. The Reliability of the Emergency Core Cooling System.- 2.2.4. Assumptions of Near-Complete Evacuation.- 2.3. Ethical Problems in the Price-Anderson Act.- 2.3.1. The Assumption That Nuclear Power Is Only a Technological Issue.- 2.3.2. Utilitarian Distributions of Nuclear Costs and Benefits.- 2.3.3. The Threshold Clause and the Argument from Ignorance.- 3. Conclusion.- Notes.- Five: Nuclear Economics and the Problem of Externalities.- 1. The Problem of Externalities.- 1.1. The Failure To Assess Externalities.- 1.2. Partially-Compensated and Uncompensated Externalities.- 2. Partially-Compensated Externalities of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle.- 2.1. The Risk of Core Melt.- 2.2. The Hazards of Low-Level Radiation.- 3. The Consequences of the Failure To Compensate.- 3.1. Less Responsible Industry Decision-Making.- 3.2. The Misallocation of Resources.- 3.3. The Promotion of Doubtful Assumptions Regarding Economic Growth.- 3.4. The Misrepresentation of Energy Choices.- 4. The Consequences of Recognizing Amenity Rights.- 5. Conclusion.- Notes.- Six: Nuclear Safety and the Naturalistic Fallacy.- 1. The Naturalistic Fallacy.- 1.1. Three Species of Error.- 1.2. The Significance of the Fallacy.- 2. Commissions of the Fallacy in Government Studies of Nuclear Power.- 2.1. The Argument Based on Probability of a Core Melt.- 2.1.1. Low Probability of Catastrophe as a Sufficient Condition for Acceptable Risks.- 2.1.2. What Is Normal as a Criterion for What Is Moral.- 2.2. The Argument Based on Other Probable Accident Risks.- 2.2.1. Consistency as a Sufficient Condition for Acceptable Judgments.- 2.2.2. The Comparability of Voluntarily-Chosen and Involuntarily-Imposed Risks.- 2.3. The Argument Based on Magnitude of Accident Consequences.- 2.3.1. The Moral Acceptability of ‘Statistically Insignificant’ Numbers of Induced Deaths.- 2.3.2. The Utilitarian Assumptions of the Argument.- 2.3.3. What Is Normal as a Criterion for What Is Moral.- 3. The Consequences to Public Policy.- 3.1. Violations of Equity and Acceptance of the Status Quo.- 3.2. Denial of Citizens’ Roles in Policy-Making.- 4. New Directions for Technology and Public Policy.- Notes.- Name Index.

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