...t problem of nuclear power and it is probably the most well-managed waste in the history of the United States. This essay is not attempting to present nuclear as the perfect answer to the increased demand for power. Nuclear is not perfect, however, of the options available it comes the closest.
This is an important issue in the United States today because many people still fear nuclear waste because of what has happened at Chernobyl. They are afraid t...
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On and off, could it be that simple? Energy is there whenever we need it, so we think. It’s not as simple as turning the light switch, replacing light bulbs, and paying the electric bills. Our energy today is made mostly from coal, natural gas, oil, wind, solar, and nuclear.
Ethos, Pathos and Nuclear Energy
Something always curious and provoking happens in science writing. Gwyneth Cravens is an author of five novels and many publications, and one who studies a topic in great detail. She creates an enormous work about nuclear energy for the last decade. Cravens’s research in her last published book titled Power to Save the World: The Truth About Nuclear Energy has led her to do an about-face on the issue. In her article “Better Energy” which was published in May 2008 in Discover magazine, she disputes and claims that nuclear energy is currently best alternative and should be considered as our future energy source.
Since the dawn of civilization, all living (and some non-living) things have needed energy. When humans discovered fire, the first form of harnessed energy, it made it easier to stay warm, prepare food, make weapons, etc. Since then, humankind has been inventing new ways to harness energy and use it to our advantage. Now-a-days, people in most nations depend extremely heavily on fossil fuels – to work, travel, regulate temperature of homes, produce food, clothing, and furniture, as well as other power industries. Not only are these fossil fuels dominating our society and creating economic vulnerability, but they also produce waste that causes a number of social and environmental concerns.
One needs to pay attention to the fact that the problems are possible not only in case of nuclear accidents. It is about the issue of the disposal nuclear waste. Increasing the amount of nuclear waste and reducing the size of the territories for their burial will make the United States face a vexed problem, because currently the elaboration of nuclear waste is not possible. The U.S. government should first promote the research aimed to find alternative ways to deal with energy shortages. Based on the fact that, despite its advantages, nuclear power might lead to catastrophic consequences of not local, but a global scale, it is necessary to seek for the solutions that will ensure minimal harm to human health and the natural balance of ecosystems.
For decades, the world has been struggling about determining whether or not to utilize nuclear energy. From 1985, when American Cold War fears stifled nuclear technology applications for power, to 2011, when the Japanese Fukishima nuclear incident resulted in many anti-nuclear sentiments, emphasis has never been placed on the potential benefits that nuclear energy poses. These sentiments include the ideas that nuclear power poses numerous threats to people and the environment, including consequences of uranium mining, processing and transport, nuclear weapons proliferation or sabotage, and of radioactive nuclear waste; reactors, due to their complexities, are more likely to fail and cause disasters.
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...
Nuclear Energy has many proponents and much opposition. Many of the groups that oppose nuclear power have legitimate concerns, mainly with the dangers of nuclear material in relation with human health concerns and environmental troubles that are risked by allowing nuclear power plants to increase in number. Yet, many of these opposition groups have made outspoken and radical claims about the “hidden” motives of why nuclear power is promoted and subsidized by our federal government. For example, The Nuclear Information and Resource Service claim that the federal government has the intention of committing genocide against Native Americans because uranium mining is predominantly done on reservations. Another cry out by nuclear power opponents is the constant reliving of the few nuclear mishaps that occurred decades ago, at Chernobyl or Three Mile Island. No doubt, past accidents have happened worldwide and are important reminders to not play around with nuclear material, but technology has improved as well, a fact opponents fail to consider. Many of these organizations feel that other sources should be used to supply America’s energy needs. These types of statements tag many opponents to nuclear energy as misinformed, out of touch with scientific facts, or just closed minded to the whole concept of nuclear power. On the other hand, the proponents of nuclear energy like President Bush see it as cheap, and environmentally friendly. As a result, President Bush passed the Comprehensive Energy Bill in 2005 that would increase production of all types of energy, including nuclear, by giving subsidies and tax breaks to nuclear power producers. Keeping safe America’s capabilities for generating electric power by way of nuclear e...
The United States government is known to give its citizens great advise with much care and concern. With this being known, many people come to the conclusion that United States citizens can faith in the government when it comes to making crucial decisions. Terry Tempest Williams is not one of these people. In “The Clan of the One-Breasted Women”, Williams gives her views on the government conducting nuclear tests in Utah. In contrast, in “America’s Energy Plan in Action: Bearing Witness,” an article Williams contributed to Orion magazine and OrionOnline, Williams speaks on issues containing actions of the government drilling for oil and natural gases. This is also conducted in Utah. Both of these articles share a common topic and tone. These two pieces both focus around major concerns for the Earth and how the government will is helping to destroy it for things like nuclear testing and drilling for oil and gases.