In the News: A Meltdown in Nuclear Security

At every commercial nuclear plant, every three years, security guards take on a simulated attack by hired commandos in so-called “force-on-force” drills. And every year, at least one U.S. nuclear plant flunks the simulation, the “attackers” damaging a reactor core and potentially triggering a fake Chernobyl – a failure rate of 5 percent.

In spite of that track record, public documents and testimony show that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the federal agency responsible for ensuring the safety and security of the nation’s fleet of commercial nuclear reactors, is now steadily rolling back the standards meant to prevent the doomsday scenario the drills are designed to simulate.