support the continuation of the US implementation of Nuclear Power
Support the continuation of the US implementation of Nuclear Power
Nuclear power is sourced from the core of atoms of specific elements. The core of an element is also called nucleus, which is held together by a lot of energy. Once the nucleus of an atom has split the energy used to bind it is released and tapped to provide electricity that is used for domestic and commercial purposes. USA is the world number one producer of nuclear energy, with over 100 nuclear reactors power plants across the USA. Based on 2014 statics from the nucleus energy institute, it was noted 19% of total energy spend across America was sourced from nuclear energy that had produced 798 billion kWhs as noted by (Fischhoff, Baruch, et al. 136). The adoption of the application of nuclear power was due to the need for energy source diversification just in case one may fail, and dependent energy activities will be prompted to go to a standstill.
Support of the use of nuclear power in the US
Currently, the use of nuclear power has been not only politicized but also due to economic concerns. The prices of oil have been rising and falling in the markets and American need a stable source of energy that is reliable and affordable as explained by (Cohen, 170). The operational cost of a pre-existing plant is comparably cheaper to running a gas and an oil plant, and the gross energy produced by nuclear plants is considerably higher than for gas and oil. There have been nuclear energy reactors and use regulatory bodies, for instance, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which have been issuing licenses and renewing them for new and operational new clear reactors plants respectively. The commission has also been exhaustively enlightening the public about the use and effects of the nuclear power in the community. The public education has made the accommodation and application of the nuclear power although dangerous due to the radiations produced easily among Americans. The use of nuclear power in the USA has been promoted by improved operational cost, efficiency, and maintenance capacities by various licensed plants across the USA. The improvement can be tracked from 20 years ago, during which some eight plants were shut prematurely due to high operational cost but currently the government intends to open 5 more nuclear plants by 2020, and the program runs to 2035 as a vision for development of the nuclear energy acquisition and uses as indicated by (Cohen, 179). The Environmental Protection Agency of the USA in 2014 gave an alert that it would implement measures to control the emission of carbon iv oxide as mention in the Clean Air Act. This would call for the application of eco-friendly energy sources like solar and wind power. Nuclear energy is a good source too when it is treated with recommended safety measure.
Present options for handling the spent nuclear waste
For a production of nuclear power cycles are involved which produce radioactive substances at each level of the cycle. At each level, the various safety measure is available and implemented to curb the high and radioactive products emitted as indicated by (Berlin, Catherine and John 234). There are bodies that help member states in the management of spent nuclear fuel. For instance, the Nuclear Energy Agency based in France has formulated different types of programs for radioactive waste management that it trains its members on. Exempt waste and very low-level waste is harmful to the environmental and people around the plant. It is safely disposed of with domestic waste. In the mining and milling sites of uranium, the waste material was traditionally covered with clay and rocks and inserted in water to withhold the radiations that may be emitted. After few months, the materials radioactivity is trapped by the layers covering it, and it becomes harmless. Transformation, enhancement and fuel fabrication are mechanisms used to convert uranium by-product and stored safely as UF6 or U3O8 (Berlin et al. 333). The stored form is useful in making military projectiles.
Give evidence of the safety of Nuclear Power
Nuclear power is utilized with few cases of accident, air pollution from the burning of fossil fuels and electricity has reported more deaths than have been linked to radioactive substances and emissions. Since the use of nuclear power started there have only been three cases of accidents and not many people, have lost life as a result. The first on is the Fukushima meltdown in Japan where only one person dies (Fischhoff, Baruch, et al. 130). The second case is Three Mile Island in the USA, but the plant is being revived to provide services again, and the last one is Chernobyl in Ukraine 31 people die due to the fire that could not be contained. Fukushima was contained while Three Mile Island case resulted in a fire that could not be contained but the last one enough that led to the escape of some radioactive materials. From the Three cases, only the Chernobyl had the worst outcome that affected the environment as well with a cumulative death toll to 56 currently
Impacts of Nuclear Power both pros and cons
In the 1970s, it was feared since very negligible knowledge on the control of emission was available. Currently, it is the most treasured alternative source of power across the globe. It does not contribute to the emission of greenhouse gasses and hence considered eco-friendly during the production of electricity as indicated by (Buzz, 2009). It has low operational cost as compared to other energy plants like oil and coal plants. It is valued since it produces high energy amounts that can serve domestic and commercial purposes as compared to the solar power and other sources that can serve only local needs. Nuclear waste materials can be recycled and be useful, and it’s considered the only energy source whose by-products at every level can be recycled or used for a different purpose. On the other hand, a nuclear plant construction cost is high, and maintenance requires a lot of expertise which can only be managed by rich countries only (Buzz, 2009). Nuclear power stations are the main target by terrorist for a now outcome of mass destruction; this poses a security concern. Once the accidents have occurred the know risks may last longer and impacts both human beings and the environment. To mine raw material like uranium is expense including the refining, transportation and environmental hazards posed by cases of poor containment and an emission occurs. When using more salient power sources like solar nothing is mined, and the infrastructures required are not comparably expensive.
In conclusion, nuclear energy is a good alternative source of energy that can satisfactorily meet both commercial and domestic energy needs. The plants are expensive to establish but once they are running they yield more benefits. It is an eco-friendly energy source since it doesn’t emit greenhouse gasses. In America, it is contributing to 20% of all the energy consumed from the 30 plants placed across America (Buzz, 2009). By 2020, five more plants will be established to make the nuclear power source even more reliable.
Buzz, Presidio. “Nuclear Energy: Pros and Cons.” Triple Pundit People Planet Profit. Triple Pundit, 23 Feb. 2009. Web. 28 Oct. 2015
Berlin, Robert E., Catherine C. Stanton, and John Wiley. “Radioactive waste management.” J. ENVIRON. QUAL 20 (1991).
Cohen, Bernard L. “Environmental Impacts of Nuclear Power.” Energy Sources Future (1975): 162.
Fischhoff, Baruch, et al. “How safe is safe enough? A psychometric study of attitudes towards technological risks and benefits.” Policy Sciences 9.2 (1978): 127-152.
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