And then, lastly, look at the ones -- and there's about a third of our nuclear plants that have some of this Japanese technology that obviously has not worked. And I think internationally we have to have some leadership in the whole range of the coolants in these reactors, the spent fuel. We have to look at ways that the international community, the international atomic energy commission looks at ways that there can be standardized safety procedures.
AMANPOUR: Do you think there needs to be a timeout?
CHERTOFF: Well, I -- I agree with Bill, we need to obviously look at the lessons learned from what's happened in Japan. But what I would caution against is overreacting, even to this catastrophic event.
You know, we had a problem with BP in the gulf, and the reaction was, we can't drill in the gulf. We have problems with other forms of energy, and people say, well, we shouldn't do that.
Well, you know, at the end of the day, if we don't use coal, oil, natural gas, or nuclear, we're going to be sitting around the fire trying to warm ourselves like we did eons ago.
So we're going to have to manage risk. That doesn't mean guaranteeing against any -- it means having in place ways to mitigate problems. And that's where I think the lessons of Japan can be very, very helpful.
RICHARDSON: And I think the lesson, also, for America is, we have to look at renewable energy, natural gas, clean sources, but reassess our entire safety procedures when it comes to our fossil fuels. When it -- look what happened in -- in the gulf. Look what happened in these mining disasters. A new conversation about safety, cost, and environmental risk of our energy production.
AMANPOUR: A new conversation, indeed. Thank you both very much for joining us. Secretary Chertoff, Governor Richardson, thank you for coming in.
And we'll have a final thought when we come back. Stay with us.
AMANPOUR: A week ago, I was in Japan. This program was broadcast out of there after we were covering the aftermath of the terrible earthquake and tsunami. And with me, a team of ABC correspondents, reporting on all the aspects of the unfolding tragedy, including the nuclear accident.
When we returned to the United States, we gathered to discuss the stories that we all didn't get a chance to report on the air. And you can find that conversation at abcnews.com, where you can always get the latest developments on Japan and Libya. And, of course, "World News with David Muir" will have a full wrap of the day's events. And ABC will have all the news across all the platforms.
Thank you for watching "This Week," and I'll see you again next Sunday.