A documentary covering how nuclear power plants work, their safety issues, and public opinions on them. Don Johnson and Mike Gray speak with several industry employees as well as critics.
0:00Copy video clip URL Audio of people sharing their opinions on nuclear power while the camera pans across power lines in a field.
1:02Copy video clip URL “Dresden Nuclear Power Station, Morris, IL.” D.E. Bromley, the tour director, talks about the layout of the Dresden Power Station and shows Mike Gray and Don Johnson a miniature model of it. He explains that it is a historic place because it is “the first privately financed, commercially operated reactor for the production of electricity in the world.”
1:37Copy video clip URL Bromley leads the men into the Access Control Building where Bill McGee, a nuclear systems engineer, gives them to not get too close to the controls. They then step into the control room. Gray asks questions about how the operating room works.
4:24Copy video clip URL McGee talks about a false signal that came in and caused some issues the night before. The camera gets more shots of the control room and people working.
6:14Copy video clip URL Gray asks what would happen if a machine failed to “scram”, or shut down. McGee explains the other processes that could be used to get a machine to slow down.
7:41Copy video clip URL Johnson asks what kind of guys work in nuclear power plants. “These are just normal guys that started with Edison as a janitor, say, and worked their way up to this job.” Johnson asks if McGee ever feels the pressure from public opinion. “I very much believe in what we do here and how safe we are.” They move on to talking about dispelling public misconception.
10:08Copy video clip URL The group begins a more in-depth conversation about the incident at Three Mile Island and what can happen during a nuclear crisis.
12:11Copy video clip URL “Advertising” A close-up of a newspaper article about Kimberly and Catherine Mayberry, two of the people affected by the Three Mile Island accident.
12:39Copy video clip URL Gray speaks with John Hogan, a media relations employee with Commonwealth Edison. Gray asks about a west coast facility that is having the same issues as Three Mile Island, and asks whether the “lessons from Three Mile Island have been learned.” Further questions about what changes will be made and educating the public.
16:09Copy video clip URL Leo Burnett Company, advertising. Ronald Smillie, Vice President, talks about finding other outlets for advertising nuclear power, notably newspapers, and addressing public fears about nuclear power. He explains that nuclear waste is the responsibility of the government, not the plants, then talks about the ethics of advertising for nuclear power.
20:02Copy video clip URL Bob Ginsburg, a chemist, criticizes the ads created for nuclear power and Commonwealth Edison.
21:44Copy video clip URL Casey Bukro, the Environment Editor for the Chicago Tribune, gives his two cents on the nuclear power advertisements and the plants themselves. “They’re telling the story from their particular viewpoint… and under our system they’re entitled to do that.”
25:31Copy video clip URL “Nuclear power is very unforgiving of errors… is that more than the human brain can deal with?”
27:08Copy video clip URL End