WASHINGTON, DC—Resources for the Future (RFF) today released a new installment of Resources Radio: “What Happened at Chernobyl?, with Todd Allen.”
In this week’s podcast, host Daniel Raimi interviews Todd Allen, the Department Chair and Professor of Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences at the University of Michigan. Allen discusses the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster, the short- and long-term consequences of radiation exposure from the incident, and what lessons are to be learned from the operational, procedural, and design errors that were made. Allen also speaks on the recent HBO miniseries, Chernobyl, and the accuracy of the series’s depiction of events and scientific concepts.
Notable quotes from the podcast:
- “In the end, what [the Chernobyl power plant] ended up with was this awful combination of a crew that was not trained for the test, that was not respecting the physics of the reactor, put themselves in the worst possible position you could be, and then it was exacerbated by a design flaw, and the whole thing just went wrong from there.”—Todd Allen (8:03)
- “[When exposed to high concentrations of nuclear radiation], you feel sick, and then you feel like you're okay, but the damage is done. Your body just cannot recover from all that high concentrated, high energy that damages the cells.”—Todd Allen (10:51)
- “[Chernobyl] was a society where no one was told what was going on. They don't trust the government, and they don't have any real reason to trust this group of scientists from a government body anymore, right? So, I think forever you will see a large range of effect in how many people were touched.”—Todd Allen (14:06)
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