Environment: How Safe the Atom?

Are nuclear power plants safe? For years tha Atomic Energy Commission has insisted that they are. For one thing, the AEC argues, the plants are equipped with so many redundant safety devices that any conceivable accident simply could not occur. For another, they are designed to the most rigorous specifications of any peacetime industry. But evidence has recently accumulated aht the AEC's position is not as secure as it sounds. The commission held extensive hearings at Bethesda, Md., to allow nuclear critics, who represented a coalition of 60 citizen groups, to dispute the...

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