Originally posted by joe beyser
Ya gotta admit though, the flood waters will not linger as long as the radiation and cause defects in the future populations. Solar and battery technology is so appealing to me. I do not like the idea of converting food to alcohol while we have starvation in the world.
More radioactive materiel has been emitted into the atmosphere (along with
other carcinogens) by all the nuclear disasters (of not nuclear bombs) combined.
Nuclear energy kills fewer people (by far) per Twhr generated than almost any
other energy generation method.
The forecast number of excess cancers caused by fukashima is currently so small
that it will be impossible to detect out of background numbers.
And that's the second worst Nuclear accident of all time.
And it's possible to build reactors where such disasters are near impossible
Nuclear energy has big upfront costs, but over the long term it's cheaper than
many other alternatives, and is certainly competitive.
I mention France again, it's 80% of state nuclear power has given it decades of
cheep stable electricity prices.
And even if renewables do undercut it in terms of price, Nuclear has other benefits
in terms of power generation that renewables tend not to have.
It's good at providing solid reliable base electrical load, which few renewables can do.
The best for that is hydroelectric, but that is also expensive in terms of build cost and
land flooded, and is not completely green either.
As the water goes up and down plants form on the banks and then get drowned, which
along with other plant detritus that falls in rots in the bottom of the lake, emitting
significant quantities of methane.
Germany has just spent decades and vast sums of money on renewables, mainly solar,
and yet they still only produce a tiny fraction of their energy from solar and other renewables.
Meanwhile France has emitted much less CO2 with its solid nuclear industry.
I advocate for a mix of power sources, to suite the environment and situation at hand.
But for the majority of countries, I really cannot see a practical or workable zero carbon
future that doesn't include a significant slice of nuclear power. At least not one that
ends up being achieved faster or cheaper than one that includes nuclear.