March 4, 2016

IF YOU DON’T SUPPORT NUCLEAR POWER, YOU DON’T REALLY CARE ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING. Nuclear Is the World’s Green Power “Workhorse.”

A generation of nuclear reactors is nearing the end of its intended life cycle around the world, but in a world where decarbonization is becoming increasingly important, nuclear energy still has an important role to play. There’s reason to be excited on that front, because as Laura Scheele writes for the U.S. Department of Energy, researchers are developing safer, smaller, and cheaper nuclear power technologies. . . .

Nuclear power doesn’t get much love from greens, but it’s the most important zero-carbon source of baseload power around. While wind and solar energy struggle with intermittency issues, nuclear plants can supply grids power 24/7, making them an absolutely vital component of any future carbonless energy mix.
But for many people nuclear’s risks overshadow its promise, with high profile accidents like Chernobyl or Three Mile Island, or more recently the Fukushima disaster, occupying a special place in their imagination. Like any energy source (yes, that includes renewables) nuclear power has potential hazards, but those can be mitigated.

There’s a raft of exciting, more modern nuclear technologies on the horizon, and it’s clear that the U.S. Department of Energy is excited by their potential. Now, if only environmentalists could open their eyes to nuclear’s imminent possibilities. . . .

Well, they’d have to care about the environment, instead of about damaging western civilization.