Nuclear Energy

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Nuclear Energy Energy consumption has become a necessity and an important part of our daily life in the past 10 years. It seems that the world is looking for an energy source that is cleaner, cheaper and more efficient and since nuclear energy has emerged it has become the forerunner for alternative energy sources. ‘As of 2004, nuclear power provided 6.5% of the world's energy and 15.7% of the world's electricity, with the U.S., France, and Japan together accounting for 57% of nuclear generated electricity’ (‘Nuclear energy facts’ 2007). Nuclear energy can be a doubled edged sword as it can be used for peaceful uses or used to manufacture weapons of mass destruction which can put the world in danger. As more countries begin to use nuclear energy, especially in the Middle East, fears of the countries in the west increases as they cannot be sure if their intentions are for peaceful uses or military uses. Many people argue that the main problem with nuclear power plants is the radioactive waste it leaves behind which have no use. ‘A typical nuclear power plant in a year generates 20 metric tons of used nuclear fuel. The nuclear industry generates a total of about 2,300 metric tons of used fuel per year’ (‘Nuclear Waste: Amounts and On-Site Storage’). There are mainly two types of radioactive wastes, low-level waste and high level waste. Low level wastes are ordinary items that come in contact with some radiation and are generated anywhere radioisotopes are used or produced such as a hospital. High level waste is the actual spent fuel, or the residual waste from reprocessing spent fuel. It takes ten of thousands of year for this for this waste to decay and be harmless to the environment, so it needs professional han... ... middle of paper ... ...in the wrong hands it may lead to wars and disasters. If it is used properly, it can be an efficient source of energy in the future, treat and diagnose diseases and most important of all prevent wars. Works Cited http://www.our-energy.com/energy_facts/nuclear_energy_facts.html http://www.nei.org/resourcesandstats/nuclear_statistics/nuclearwasteamou ntsandonsitestorage/ http://www.copperwiki.org/index.php/Nuclear_energy http://www.ornl.gov/info/ornlreview/rev26-34/text/colmain.html http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/print/22745 http://www.ehow.com/about_5100776_disadvantages-nuclear-energy.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiation_poisoning http://www.physics.isu.edu/radinf/np-risk.htm http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/chernobyl/inf07.html http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf55.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sterilization_%28microbiology%29

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