Daniel Halliday
Jul 3 · Last update 3 mo. ago.

Could the world leave behind nuclear energy?

There are 449 civilian run nuclear fission power plants globally, and in 2017 they generated approximately 10% of the worldwide energy supply. In many countries internationally there has long been a push to stop or minimise the use of nuclear reactors, following accidents or nuclear waste scandals. Likewise the global call for cleaner, more sustainable methods of generating power has become stronger in recent years. With this in mind could the Earth afford to leave behind this controversial energy source, and are alternative technologies able to fill the void that nuclear power would leave?
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Yes, there are sustainable alternatives
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No – sustainable low carbon plants will not meet future energy needs
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Yes, there are sustainable alternatives

Generating energy in nuclear power plants may have a lower carbon foot print, but is certainly not a waste free means of generating power, and although it may be low waste in some respects, the waste produced is highly radioactive and therefore much more hazardous. What is more nuclear power stations supply around 10% of the global supply of the world’s electricity needs, currently much lower than even hydrological power plants, so nuclear proves a much smaller non-sustainable method of electricity production than coal or gas, and would therefore take a shorter time to phase out comparing to them. But with the ever-falling cost of sustainable energy supply both fossil fuel and nuclear energy will have cheaper and sustainable alternatives moving forward, for example the cost solar photovoltaic technology has fallen 73% since 2010, meaning sustainable alternatives are tangible.

world-nuclear.org/information-library/nuclear-fuel-cycle/nuclear-wastes/radioactive-waste-management.aspx world-nuclear.org/information-library/current-and-future-generation/nuclear-power-in-the-world-today.aspx forbes.com/sites/dominicdudley/2018/01/13/renewable-energy-cost-effective-fossil-fuels-2020/#436f4a1b4ff2

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Daniel Halliday
Sep 24
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No – sustainable low carbon plants will not meet future energy needs

Sustainable and renewable power sources are based on powering things from fairly inefficient means of transferring kinetic, heat or light energy into electrical energy, for example in a solar panel too small an amount of light is converted into electricity. Hydro, Solar, Wind, Geothermal and Tidal power plants current meet around 20% of the world’s total required energy supply, even with future developments and better technology, this may not be enough to take over from the combined use of renewable nuclear and fossil fuels currently in use. However, moving forward energy needs will change also, and future industries such as space travel (either consumer, military or mining) will inevitably rely on nuclear power, we should be funding research on this now to lead the way in a nuclear revolution of more efficient and safe nuclear energy production. Currently too many restrictions are limiting progress in this field, nuclear energy is a low carbon alternative to fossil fuels and should be stepped up to address climate change and to preempt future energy needs.

world-nuclear.org/information-library/current-and-future-generation/nuclear-power-in-the-world-today.aspx

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Daniel Halliday
Jul 7
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