The Nuclear Support Debate

Fukishima has recently demonstrated through the facts of its self destructive radioactive demise, that all the horses and all the kings men, cannot do the impossible.  The impossible is based on the fact that without cooling water and power, nothing can stop the self destruction of a nuclear reactor.  Nuclear fission goes on and on until the fuel is spent, something which seemingly is going to take quite a bit of time, and in the process the massive energy released, so brilliant when converted to power and light, helps with the destruction of the reactor, the containment vessel and other auxilliary systems.

I have a question which is, for all the old Nuclear plants in the world, how are they maintained ? can spare parts be found ? what if something breaks ? can we fix it in time ? can we diagnose it in time ?.  These questions relate to a supply chain problem, which looks like it might have broken at the time of 3 mile island.  So if you STOP the nuclear industry, do you stop suppliers from having the bandwidth, motivation, and energy to continue supporting all the old equipment forever ? Is this happening ?  Supply and Demand and private enterprise would seem to dictate, that an industry can only be maintained, if it is ongoing, and if it is NOT ongoing, then perhaps is might be maintained.  Can you guarantee, that someone, somewhere on the planet can stock or make all of the items which are used in the construction of existing Nuclear plants ?.. you might be confident if at least you knew there was an ongoing market, other than eBay perhaps for the components.

If I am therefore NOT confident of the supply of spare parts, or ability to respond in a crisis, can I therefore perhaps  add this to the list of risk scenarios to be considered as we heighten the awareness of our lives with Nuclear energy.