Nuclearis Not the Answer
Nuclearis Not the Answer
Thearticle discusses the issue of nuclear power as an alternative sourceof energy to fossil fuels. The report claims that even though nuclearenergy produces relatively small amounts of greenhouse gasses thanfossil fuels, it is not the best solution in controlling climatechanges. The effects of nuclear power are more adverse and severethan those exhibited by burning fossil fuels (Nader, 2014). Theamount of energy that nuclear power plants produce is high comparedto that produced by burning fossil fuels. According to data obtainedfrom the Nuclear Energy Institute, about 14% of the world’selectricity production in the year 2008 was obtained from nuclearpower (Dittmar, 2012).
Thearticle claim that nuclear energy is not the answer is true.According to obtained statistics, fossil fuels are much safer to usethan nuclear power. Nuclear power can cause severe damage to theenvironment for a long period, as compared to the effect of fossilfuels on the environment. The disadvantages of nuclear energyoutweigh it benefits. A nuclear power plant produces enormousradioactive wastes which are a hazard to the environment and animalhealth. The waste must be stored for several thousand years todegrade (Ashleyetal., 2012).Nuclear power plants have various precautions to maintain safety.Nevertheless, terrible, more severe accidents happen which causecatastrophic effects. A good example of a nuclear power plantaccident occurred in Ukraine at the Chernobyl Nuclear power plant onthe 26thof April the year 1986, where more than 600,000 people were exposedto radiation (Steinhauser,Brandl,and Johnson, 2014).
Theauthor of the article argues that nuclear energy is not much betterthan fossil fuels. This claim is well supported in the article. Eventhough nuclear power does not release greenhouse gasses to theenvironment like fossil fuels, their effects on the environment aremore rigorous. The radioisotopes required to produce nuclear powerhave long half lives. Hence, they require a considerable long periodto degrade. The accidental release of these radioisotopes can lead todire effects on the environment (Ashleyetal., 2012).The author also supports his/ her argument by giving various examplesin real life of the effects of nuclear power as compared to fossilfuels. These examples include the Fukushima nuclear power disasterwhich occurred in the year 2011 and Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plantdisaster in 1986 among others (Steinhauser,Brandl,and Johnson, 2014).The author validates his/ her argument by pointing out that nuclearpower is a nonrenewable, hence not an alternative to fossil fuels.The elements that nuclear power plants use are rare and expensive tomine. Uranium deposits used in a nuclear power plant are estimated tolast for thirty to sixty years, depending on its usage.
Theevidence put forward by the author is timely and accurate. The authorutilizes specific examples, with an actual time frame to supporthis/her argument. The evidence put forward validates the authors’argument that nuclear energy is not better than fossil fuels. Thewriter addresses the question by listing the pros and cons of nuclearpower. He also analyses fossil fuels, advantages and disadvantages.The author concludes by stating that fossil fuels are much betterthan nuclear energy. With the rise in technology, fossil fuels can beimproved to reduce the amount of pollutants released into theenvironment.
Ashley,S. F., Parks, G. T., Nuttall, W. J., Boxall, C., & Grimes, R. W.(2012). Nuclear energy: thorium fuel has risks. Nature, 492(7427),31-33.
Dittmar,M. (2012). Nuclear energy: status and futurelimitations. Energy, 37(1),35-40.
Nader,R. (2014). Nuclear power is not the answer.
Steinhauser,G., Brandl, A., & Johnson, T. E. (2014). Comparison of theChernobyl and Fukushima nuclear accidents: A review of theenvironmental impacts. Scienceof the Total Environment, 470,800-817.