My heart really goes out to everyone who's affected by the recent earthquake(s) in Japan. Watching @cnnbrk update the death/injured/missing counts every hour is depressing and shocking, but at the same time, incredibly humbling. For years, Japan has been engineering buildings to handle just this sort of an event, and it's a testament to their efforts that the death toll is in the thousands and not the hundreds of thousands as died from the 2004 Indian Ocean quake.
Still, though, the difficulties they've been having with their Nuclear power plants, are alarming many anti-nuclear folks. I have to be really honest here: Nuclear Power is safe, and far safer than coal or gas both to the people around the plants and to the planet. I've read some real gems on this topic in the last few days, but by far this is my most favorite quote:
"A 41 year old nuclear reactor gets hit by a 9 magnitude earthquake, then slammed with 20 ft. tall swell, followed by an explosion due to the buildup of hydrogen gas that blows off the roof of the building, and the core is intact and contained. And you are telling me nuclear power isn't safe?"
I don't know the source; this quote has been paraphrased all over the internet, but I love it.