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The Hidden Nuclear Risk of the Pandemic

The coronavirus crisis highlights the resilience problem of civilian nuclear power plants.

The coronavirus crisis has revealed a significant Achilles’ heel in civilian nuclear power: The plants can’t operate if their relatively few highly skilled operators get sick or become contagious and have to be quarantined, a situation that, according to news reports, some plants are getting close to. That puts a dent in nuclear-industry assertions that its plants provide a level of protection against natural events far beyond that of most other electricity suppliers.