Why Environmentalists Should Appreciate Nuclear Power

Remington Longley 9/19/2017

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As the world's populations continues to boom, there has been much debate and speculation over how our world can best preserve natural resources while also accommodating for the many new people living on the planet. Whether it’s through a climate accord, small or large non-profit groups, international organizations, or mandating new laws, postulation over how world leaders can increase their roles to protect the planet has become an increasing trend.

         More specifically there is a debating surrounding energy alternatives and energy solutions. As more and more people inhabit the Earth, energy has become a main talking point in the discussion of resources preservation. Talks about how how to create massive amounts of energy to benefit increasing populations certainly make sense in a society where the population is expected to reach 9 billion people by 2024, according to population.io and the United Nations.

         Some ideas proposed to provide energy for the growing populations includes wind based energy. However, critics of the wind industry often cite that birds are exclusive victims of wind energy, in which wind turbines are responsible for anywhere from 140,00 to 328,000 bird deaths. This statistic makes wind the most “dangerous form of green energy,” according to Audubon, a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to planetary conservation. Supporters often cite that oil is a nonrenewable resource, and that the growing demand for alternative energy sources outweighs the costs of some aspects of green energy.

         What if there was a way to produce massive amounts of energy without staggering amounts of CO2 emissions? Perhaps then, in this scenario, environmentalists should gravitate towards favoring the production of nuclear energy. Nuclear energy, first and foremost, produces astronomically small amounts of carbon emissions into the air. Even critics of nuclear power, such as journalists and editors at timeforchange.com, have noted that one of the “pros of nuclear power is the relatively low emission of carbon dioxide”.

         Another notable pro to nuclear energy is a vast reduction of nuclear waste. Nuclear waste produces a meager fraction of any sort of waste produced by coal and oil energy outlets. The highly fractional reductions made in waste could prove to be beneficial to our planet, seeing as waste and waste storage has been dominating environmentalist conversations as long as our demand for energy.

         While nuclear power cannot be totally romanticized, nuclear power seems to be the idol of the future. Combating climate change with technology while preserving our economy seems like a utopian idea, however it is possible that nuclear energy could very well veer us in that direction.

Sources

http://www.audubon.org/news/will-wind-turbines-ever-be-safe-birds

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/energy/2014/11/141111-solar-panel-manufacturing-sustainability-ranking/

http://ecolo.org/documents/documents_in_english/BENEFITS-of-NUCLEAR.pdf

http://www.world-nuclear.org/nuclear-basics/greenhouse-gas-emissions-avoided.aspx

http://timeforchange.org/co2-emission-nuclear-power-stations-electricity

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