Summary of Documental - El poder del átomo

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The documentary "El poder del átomo" explores the dangers of nuclear power and how it can be used to kill. It interviews various experts, including a nuclear engineer who resigned in protest over the construction of a nuclear power plant, and a minister in Japan who discusses the aftermath of an accidental nuclear reactor meltdown. Overall, the documentary emphasizes the importance of public opinion in the decision-making process around nuclear energy, and the dangers of a major accident.

  • 00:00:00 In the 1970s, the deadly power of the atomic bomb was reborn as the peaceful atom. At the same time, we were leading the way in technology with our sophisticated world of secret, magical worlds. Governments with France's clear vision of their salvation realized that their electrical supply would soon need nuclear energy, but from the beginning, the peaceful atom has been pursued by concerns around safety. In December of 1953, President Eisenhower delivered a speech on atomic energy called "Atoms for Peace" which kickstarted the propaganda campaign for nuclear energy. Within months, all American embassies around the world were activated with information campaigns about the wonderful benefits of atomic energy. This effort included traveling exhibitions which received visits from millions of people from all over the world. The propaganda for atomic energy included small nuclear devices shown to the public for the first time at the Berlin West Exhibition in Germany. India was the first country to have a translated American president's speech on atomic energy delivered to its people. The first Soviet premier to see the exhibit was so impressed that he shared the experience with his compatriots across the world. Japan was the most important country for the propaganda campaign because it was the leading country in nuclear technology. The American message of atomic energy as a force for good
  • 00:05:00 The narrator describes how, in the 1950s, being a young scientist or engineer in the United Kingdom was like being in a paradise, comparable to the boom in point-of-sale systems in the 1990s. However, the nuclear energy revolution was much greater than either of these previous revolutions, with the British leading the way in adopting nuclear energy. This led to the country becoming a nuclear superpower, alongside the United States and the Soviet Union. One of the narrator's responsibilities was to check for defects in materials used in nuclear reactors. Once, while he was climbing up to the main reactor structure, he noticed a large area of open land near the reactor, previously hidden by trees. He recalls how, 50 years earlier, when he was a child living in Essex, no one would have thought that England would one day be a nuclear power. Today, nuclear energy is still a key part of the British economy, and the country remains a world leader in this field. The nuclear power industry has brought many technological advances to the world, some of which have been particularly beneficial to the UK.
  • 00:10:00 This documentary covers the history and benefits of nuclear energy, as well as the risks associated with its use. It interviews various experts, including a nuclear engineer who resigned in protest over the construction of a nuclear power plant, and a minister in Japan who discusses the aftermath of an accidental nuclear reactor meltdown. Overall, the documentary emphasizes the importance of public opinion in the decision-making process around nuclear energy, and the dangers of a major accident.
  • 00:15:00 The video discusses the history of nuclear energy, focusing on the 1973 oil embargo and the subsequent rise in nuclear energy prices. It interviews people involved in the nuclear industry in France and the United States, and illustrates the difference in approach between the two countries. France was able to continue its nuclear program due to its increased reliance on oil imports, while the US was forced to cancel projects and develop renewable energy sources. The crisis in the oil market in the late 1970s led to a renewed focus on nuclear energy in France, as it was the only sector of the economy that could replace oil. France has since built 58 nuclear reactors, more than any other country. The US has only managed to build three reactors of the same type.
  • 00:20:00 In the 1970s, the anti-nuclear movement in Western Europe and possibly the world, grew due to reports of mysterious illnesses and changes in the environment near German nuclear power plants. In 1981, 150,000 people participated in a banned protest at a nuclear plant in Pennsylvania. Police responded with tear gas and violence, leading to injuries and the arrests of thousands. These peaceful educational sessions soon gave way to more alarming scenes, with protesters occupying the site of a planned nuclear reactor and clashes with the police. Eventually, in 1989, the German government agreed to phase out nuclear power and replaced it with renewable energy. The anti-nuclear movement in Germany played a significant role in this change.
  • 00:25:00 In the 1980s, Greenpeace activists used secret information to block a nuclear plant's pipeline, leading to public suspicion of the industry. Shortly afterwards, the first commercial nuclear plant was built, and the organization created a visitors' center to educate the public about the technology. During the decade, the industry faced challenges, but at least some part of the nuclear industry was trying to defend itself with public relations and explanations of safety. In 1984, the Nuclear Fuel Cycle Security Committee was created, and its name was changed to the Selexyz Field Committee after Windscale, the original site of the commercial plant. Greenpeace was one of the organizations involved in the committee's work. Despite the industry's efforts, public sentiment towards nuclear technology has since shifted in a negative direction, and today only a small part of the nuclear industry is trying to keep up appearances. The Selexyz Field Committee's mission has since been taken on by a new organization, called the Nuclear Security Project, which is funded by the government and has a mandate to improve public understanding of nuclear technology.
  • 00:30:00 A documentary about the power of the atom focuses on the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, which occurred two days earlier. The video explains that, after the disaster, the Western governments fought to distance themselves from nuclear energy, and the blame for the accident was quickly directed towards the Russian technology. However, German citizens quickly lost acceptance of nuclear power after the disaster, and a cooperative citizen energy project was successfully created to provide electricity to local residents. This project defied expectations, as the supplier of energy was initially unwilling to provide electricity without nuclear power.
  • 00:35:00 In the 1980s, many people in the industry of nuclear energy were pessimistic about its future, as the worldwide market for nuclear power was shrinking. However, in 1998, the Green Party of Germany won government, and decided to phase out nuclear power gradually. This was opposed by the industry, which argued that it needed to be kept in order to ensure a safe and reliable nuclear power industry. However, by 2001, the industry had mostly collapsed due to its own financial problems. The documentary discusses the pros and cons of nuclear power, and how it has been historically difficult to privatize.
  • 00:40:00 The documentary, "El poder del átomo", discusses the potential risks of climate change, nuclear power, and the need for new nuclear plants in the United States. The film goes on to explain how the industry has recovered and is now more confident in its ability to build nuclear plants again. It also discusses the progress made in the United Kingdom with their nuclear program, and how France and Germany are still looking to build new nuclear plants. The documentary ends with the announcement of a new nuclear plant in the United States.
  • 00:45:00 In this video, a former high-ranking executive from a nuclear company recalls the emotional moment when he saw a news report about the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. He comments on the irony of how, just a few years earlier, his own government had been the recipient of a similar message about the safety of nuclear energy. The video ends with a discussion of the energy landscape in Germany, where nuclear power is rapidly declining due to the increasing use of solar and wind energy.
  • 00:50:00 The central in [__] Canyon in the US is treating a practical issue - they had discovered large amounts of natural gas. It is much cheaper and much more practical in France, where nuclear power is not financially feasible. There is no nuclear renaissance in the West, as is often claimed, and that is a propaganda lie. The nuclear energy industry still has its defenders in the Department of Energy. We propose that nuclear energy return to excitement, and discuss the real objections to nuclear energy. We can resolve these technical issues. Nuclear energy will continue to struggle against competition, and there will always be those who advocate for a nuclear-free world. Nuclear power will always have the powerful support of scientists and engineers, and politicians who considered themselves adequately equipped to decide its future. They transmitted to the public that if they were left alone, they could control the technology and solve the problems caused by accidents. Since they have been met with political pressure, their Chinese counterparts are succeeding in avoiding such pressures. Nuclear technology is inherently political because of the inherent risks and economic complexities. It could be said that it has fallen of its own will if no significant discovery in nuclear technology is made. Nuclear power will always have the support of scientists and engineers, as well as political leaders who deem themselves capable
  • 00:55:00 This documentary explores the various ways in which atoms can kill, including cancer.

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