President's Column

Safety: It comes down to perception

Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar

Last month I asked if you’ve ever wondered why nuclear isn’t commonly considered the choice for clean power production. I also provided what I hope will be useful information as you make the case for nuclear in discussions about clean energy. In addition to being the cleanest form of energy today, nuclear is also safe, reliable, and scalable. This month, let’s talk safety.

Like the term “clean,” “safety” can mean something different to everyone. As measured by the number of deaths per unit of electricity produced, nuclear is on the same order of magnitude as “renewables” and other low-carbon sources of energy.

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Letter from the CEO

Low-dose radiation has found its analogue

Craig Piercy

Originally published in the September 2020 issue of Nuclear News.

This issue of Nuclear News is dedicated to highlighting advancements in health physics and radiation protection as well as the contributions of the men and women who serve in these fields. It comes at a time when COVID-19 is providing the entire world with an immersive primer on the science of epidemiology and the importance of risk-informed, performance-based behavior to contain an invisible—yet deadly—antagonist.

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Key federal nuclear policy post opens to applicants

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) within the Executive Office of the President is charged with reviewing and approving the annual budget requests of federal departments and agencies, including the Department of Energy. “In many ways, the OMB is the final authority on government spending,” explained ANS Executive Director/CEO Craig Piercy.

A window has just opened for applicants to serve as a nuclear program examiner for the OMB, with responsibility for analyzing nuclear policy issues and developing recommendations.

ANS convenes new task force on federal nuclear R&D funding

The American Nuclear Society has formed a Task Force on Public Investment in Nuclear Research and Development to assess the R&D needs of the U.S. nuclear technology enterprise and the federal investment required to meet those needs. The task force will identify the overarching objectives of U.S. nuclear R&D and identify specific metrics that can be used to evaluate progress toward those objectives.

Letter from the CEO

The U.S. nuclear supply chain: Time to start the climb

Craig Piercy

Originally published in the August 2020 issue of Nuclear News.

Dear reader:

Let’s face it. The U.S. nuclear manufacturing and supply chain is not what it once was. In the 1960s and ’70s, America was the dominant player in the global nuclear industry. Under the auspices of Atoms for Peace, U.S. companies successfully provided reactor systems and associated services to countries across the world and held significant sway over the course of future nuclear development in the international arena. America was at the top of its nuclear game.

President's Column

What does “clean” mean to you?

Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar

Originally published in the August 2020 issue of Nuclear News.

Have you wondered why, in this age of climate alarmism, nuclear isn’t considered the choice for clean power production? You seldom hear nuclear mentioned in the same context as wind, solar, and hydropower. Yet nuclear is the cleanest and safest form of energy today that is both reliable and scalable.


Letter from the CEO

Our flagship moves forward

Craig Piercy

Originally published in the July 2020 issue of Nuclear News.

Dear reader:

Welcome to the inaugural edition of the new Nuclear News! What you are seeing is truly the product of a team effort, led by our Director of Publications John Fabian and veteran Editor-in-Chief Rick Mi­chal, to fundamentally reimagine the way we bring you news and insights from the wide world of nu­clear science and technology. Nuclear News has always been the flagship publication of the American Nuclear Society, but in recent decades our visual format has gotten a little, well . . . long in the tooth.

President's Column

400 words?!?

Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar

Originally published in the July 2020 issue of Nuclear News.

It’s my first column as ANS president and I’m limited to 400 words? Well, it turns out you can say a lot with a little. Take, for example, “Shelter in place,” and “Say their names.” These phrases have been at the forefront of our consciousness in recent months, and each invokes a host of emotions and mental images. What should the ANS catchphrase be? “Into the Nuclear Future”? “Just Nuke It”? “Nuclear, it keeps going . . . and going . . . and going . . . ”? How about, “Nuclear: The choice of a new generation”?

Nominations needed for the 2021 ANS election

Each year, ANS leaders are nominated and elected from among the dedicated nuclear technology professionals that make up the Society’s membership. Now is your chance to nominate candidates to run in the 2021 ANS national election for the offices of vice president/president-elect and treasurer and for five positions on the ANS Board of Directors. All terms will begin in June 2021.

ANS joins Equal by 30 campaign

Achieving gender equality in the clean energy sector by 2030 is the goal of Equal by 30, a campaign of the Clean Energy, Education and Empowerment (C3E) initiative. ANS joined the campaign on June 25 and is now one of nearly 150 public and private sector organizations committed to taking concrete action toward achieving equal pay, equal leadership, and equal opportunities for women in the clean energy sector by 2030.

Piercy discusses wide-ranging topics on Titans of Nuclear podcast

ANS Executive Director/CEO Craig Piercy was a recent guest on the Titans of Nuclear podcast, hosted by Bret Kugelmass. The podcasts feature interviews with experts throughout the nuclear community, covering advanced technology, economics, policy, industry, and more.

The wide-ranging discussion with Piercy tackled diverse subjects—from his Washington, D.C., policymaking background, to ANS’s role in addressing challenging nuclear issues, to waste management and climate change.

Dunzik-Gougar leads as new ANS president

Dunzik-Gougar

Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar is the 66th president of the American Nuclear Society. On June 11, during a meeting of the Board of Directors that—like the rest of the 2020 ANS Annual Meeting—was held virtually, the duties of president were officially transferred from Marilyn Kray to Dunzik-Gougar, who will serve a one-year term as president. Kray will remain on the Board of Directors for one year as immediate past president.

ANS Executive Committee releases statement on recent killings of unarmed African Americans and systemic racism

The American Nuclear Society has issued a statement on the recent events around the country. The full statement can be viewed below.


Statement from the American Nuclear Society Executive Committee on recent killings of unarmed African Americans and systemic racism

On behalf of the American Nuclear Society, we express our deep sadness over the death of George Floyd and other unarmed African Americans. These events have laid bare the deep racial wounds and divisions which still exist in our society today, including those within our own community of nuclear professionals.

ANS backs NRC rulemaking on spent fuel reprocessing

Piercy

Nesbit

ANS Executive Director/CEO Craig Piercy sent a letter to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission on May 28 urging the agency to resume work on a proposed rulemaking to allow spent fuel reprocessing in the United States. As the letter explains, “the lack of an efficient, technically robust, and technology-inclusive regulatory foundation for reprocessing and recycling is a barrier to innovation.”

Steve Nesbit, who was recently elected ANS’s next vice president/president-elect, chairs the ANS Nuclear Waste Policy Task Force and helped develop the letter. ANS News staff talked with Nesbit about the development and goals of ANS’s participation in the NRC’s rulemaking process.

Letter from the CEO

Making the best of the "new normal"

Craig Piercy


Dear ANS Members,

In the midst of a global pandemic, it feels insufficient somehow to begin a letter with the oft-used expression of hope that it “finds you well.” We are all affected by COVID-19 in some way that makes us less “well” in our lives, whether caused by the virus itself or the socioeconomic ramifications of our response to it. Perhaps it is more realistic for me to hope that you and your family are healthy, generally well-provisioned, and gainfully occupied as we all, collectively and individually, find a way to make the best of our “new normal.”

President's Column

Staying positive

Marilyn Kray

What can be said that hasn’t already been said about these “uncertain times”? There are numerous mottos and catchphrases out there. I choose to follow this one: “Stay home. Stay positive.”

I’ve been staying home, which is quite a change for me since I spent over half of the first two months of 2020 traveling. It all came to a screeching halt in early March. Working remotely is not that different for me, as I’m used to working in hotels and on planes. The biggest difference is that when my husband walks by and I order a Diet Coke and extra pretzels, he doesn’t respond like an American Airlines flight attendant!