Science Saturday: Nuclear energy, melting ice caps, and human adaptation

I was on Science Saturday this week, talking with Jessa Gamble, a science journalist and the author of Siesta and the Midnight Sun, a book about how culture and biology effect the way we experience time.

Jessa was in Japan in 1999, when an accident at a nuclear fuel processing facility in the prefecture just south of Fukushima killed two workers. We started off our conversation talking about the industry lapses that led to that accident, and how government and the media responded to it.


  1. Science gossip?  This is sad.

    Please don’t claim that scrubbing sulfer has reduced global warming without citing actual data.  Is this now the GWAlarmist’s explanation why the warming is not taking place as fast as they screamed about?   GW causing earthquakes?????

    Junk science at best.  I had to stop listening.

    1. NLA22, I’m not sure whether you’re just trolling or being willfully ignorant in order to support your pet anti-science dogma. Either way, here’s some basic information you apparently have missed: 

      >This isn’t an issue about climate scientists being wrong. This is an issue about them knowing how greenhouse gases and particulate matter affect climate and knowing that climate change will speed up if there are less particulates in the atmosphere, and then trying to figure out how big that increase might be. The planet is warming. That’s well-documented. We have a big problem even if China never cleans up its smokestacks. But particulates from burning coal means that we haven’t gotten the full brunt of warming that we might have otherwise. It’s important to get some better information on what will happen when the particulate levels fall. You can read more about that, and see my citations, in a story I published on BoingBoing this week:

      >If you had listened to the video, you would have learned how climate change can cause smaller earthquakes in regions where ice is rapidly melting. That’s another story that was published on BoingBoing. It’s a nuanced one. And you can read the full thing (again, with mention of the scientists I got the information from) here:

      >If none of the actual information really matters to you, and you’re just here to yell about your dogma, I’m sorry. I can’t help you. 

  2. Too bad you quit.  The discussion near the end about anti-siestas is totally fascinating.

    And demanding citations?  Really?  You do realize you’re watching a chat between two (intelligent and well-informed) journalists, not witnessing a doctoral defence, right?  On a Saturday morning, no less!  Time to chill out… (maybe spend some time reading the dictionary, because there’s more than one way to spell sulfur, but yours ain’t one of ’em.)

  3. Maggie, enjoyed your response to NLA22 but this person’s mere existence highlights there is a problem:  wilful ignorance plus rampaging anti-scientism. It wouldn’t be a problem if the numbers weren’t so large, ie if it weren’t so widespread. Where did we go wrong?masterymistery

  4. Maggie, I had trouble hearing your voices in parts of that video.  Thanks.

    NLA22, do you have data that proves the ideas mentioned above to be fallible?  Somehow I rather doubt that.

  5. Is there any information when the ( climate change/ earthquakes) discussion starts with ” I heard a lot about…” and then go on and on about speculation and rumor. I couldn’t even listen to the whole thing, never even made it to the other speaker with only 30 seconds to go. No information at all, and only one person speaking and a very very irritating platform with poor quality.

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