Email Nuclear energy has no place in a safe, clean, sustainable future. High profile disasters in Chernobyl, Ukraine in and Fukushima, Japan in have raised public awareness of the dangers of nuclear power. Consequently, zeal for nuclear energy has fizzled. The catastrophic risks of nuclear energy — like the meltdowns of nuclear reactors in Japan or Ukraine — far outweigh the potential benefits.
Among other reasons, the French have turned to nuclear power because it provides both jobs and power to a country that has little to no natural energy resources. With increased financial commitment to nuclear energy and a deal with French nuclear manufacturer Areva to build a Clean Energy Park in Fresno, Calif.
Do those plans pose a threat to our environment, as well as our own personal safety? Can 50 million Frenchmen actually be wrong? Here are a couple of the points in favor of nuclear power: It steers clear of fossil fuels, releases less radioactivity than coal-fired power plants and is unaffected by the ups and downs of oil and gas prices [source: BielloWorld Nuclear Association ].
And aside from Chernobyl, no one, from nuclear workers to the general public, has ever died from radiation exposure due to a commercial nuclear reactor incident [source: That said, Chernobyl led to a percent spike in congenital birth deformities, according to a United Nations report.
Indeed, the Chernobyl disaster caused physicists and engineers to take a second look at their approach to nuclear power plants. As the Iron Curtain went down, so too did the government secrets that shrouded nuclear facilities.
Similarly, the IAEA was set up to "legally commit participating States operating land-based nuclear power plants to maintain a high level of safety by setting international benchmarks to which States would subscribe" [source: World Nuclear Association ].
One giant, unanswered problem of nuclear power is what to do with nuclear waste. We produce about 2, tons 2, metric tons yearly, with nowhere safe to put it.
Currently, the nuclear industry stores the waste in massive concrete structures. France eventually plans to store its nuclear waste far underground, digging tunnels into million-year-old rock [source: For now, the waste has to be protected to prevent the materials from falling into the wrong hands.
So perhaps those 50 million Frenchmen eventually will look next door to Spain, one of the leading countries for wind turbine production, for alternative methods to keep their country powered [source:With increased financial commitment to nuclear energy and a deal with French nuclear manufacturer Areva to build a Clean Energy Park in Fresno, Calif., signs point to the potential for the United States to build more nuclear reactors in the coming years.
Nuclear power may be clean, but people still question whether it is, or ever will be, safe enough. Those fears may be moot. Safety concerns didn't delay construction on Watts Bar Unit 2 for so many years.
Economics did. For all that fear, nuclear power still has the safest track record of any power source.
News and information on nuclear power, nuclear energy, nuclear energy for sustainable development, uranium mining, uranium enrichment, nuclear generation of electricity, used fuel management, recycling and disposal, nuclear policies, new nuclear plant, nuclear energy development and climate change mitigation from the World Nuclear .
Oct 11, · News about nuclear energy, including commentary and archival articles published in The New York Times. Generating energy by nuclear fission has proven to be one of the safest industrial pursuits in the world.
Nuclear accidents such as Chernobyl or Fukushima happened in large part because of failings in systems—systems of people, procedure, and political interference in day-to-day and moment-to.
How Safe Are U.S.
Nuclear Reactors? Lessons from Fukushima. The U.S. has reactors of the same designs that melted down at Fukushima Daiichi, but regulators hope changes could prevent a repeat of.