Frank von Hippel, whose smarts, cool, and good judgment are universally respected among experts in arms control and nuclear security, published a paper (with several colleagues) two years ago in Science and Global Security warning that terrorists could, by draining one of the cooling pools that hold the nuclear waste stored at reactor sites across the country, create an incident “significantly worse than worse than … Chernobyl.”
Congress asked the National Academy of Sciences to analyze the question. The Nuclear Reglatory Commission has managed, so far, to keep the National Academy report secret, despite the absence from it of any actually classified information.
It’s pretty clear that the NRC, under BushCheney, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the nuclear power industry, and that the industry doesn’t want to spend the $5 billion or so von Hippel and colleagues say would be needed to fix the situation. So they’re pretending the problem doesn’t exist.
Don’t worry, though: What you don’t know can’t hurt them. After an attack happens, any complaints about lack of planning will, of course, be shrill and partisan.