Some Advantages of Nuclear Energy

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Nuclear energy is by far one of the most controversial forms of ‘clean’ energy today. This is partially due to the possibilities of catastrophic accidents and how to appropriately dispose of nuclear waste. In comparison to coal and other forms of non renewable energy, nuclear power is one of the most expensive and hardest to produce types of renewable energy. However, nuclear energy has benefits that coal and non-renewable sources can not match. These benefits include: possibilities of innovating , lower than normal waste production, and the constant updating of safety standards. Since nuclear energy has only just been discovered as an effective way to produce large amounts of high density energy, there are great possibilities of innovation for greater power production and less harmful waste. There are already signs that innovation has occurred in the nuclear power community, such as, the discovery of Fast Neutron reactors and Thorium as alternate fuel for reactors.(McInnes) McInnes notes that, “Fast Neutron reactors are being heavily pursued by China and India.“ McInnes also touches on ”the use of Nuclear energy in developing countries to desalinate seawater.” These points expressed by McInnes helps solidify nuclear energy as a power source that could become timeless. Nuclear energy is one of the most effective solutions for lowering the carbon footprint of humans. It creates dramatically less waste and air pollutants compared to coal and oil. The use of coal as an energy source has extremely high pollution rates; in which, coal power plants release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The air pollution from nuclear reactors is virtually nothing since all that emitted is steam. One may say that there is radiation that will be discharged into the ground due to spent fuel cartridges. This is true but there are many ways governments are combatting it. One way is “to encase spent fuel rods in concrete-and-steel bunkers.”(Wernau, Black) Fast Neutron reactors convert spent fuel rods into more energy and less waste.(McInnes) These methods are just some of the many ways that nuclear waste is removed from the environment with few consequences. Nuclear power plants are regulated under extreme scrutiny when it comes to safety and safety procedures. There have been a few incidents that have happened in recent history that have shaped the way nuclear power plants operate today. The melt down of the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan lead to the creation of more safeguards for all reactors around the world.

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