Nuclear energy sources like oil and gas. At the

Nuclear
energy—- should we keep using nuclear energy

Introduction

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Nuclear
energy is a type of energy which was developed in the 1930s to replace other
energy sources like oil and gas. At the beginning of the invention, scientist
thought that the nuclear energy could be a very clean energy and the nuclear
could produce far more energy than other kinds of energy. Consequently, more
and more countries are taking action to take the challenge to invent their own
nuclear reactor. According to data from World nuclear association, that in East
through to South Asia there are 128 operable nuclear power reactors, 40 under
construction and firm plans to build a further 90 and much more are proposed.

However, there is one famous case about the flaw of using nuclear energy that
in 2011 in Japan, there is a huge nuclear leak after the earthquake in the area
of Fukushima nuclear station. This nuclear leak causes a lot of backlash and from
the scientist that the leaking nuclear material will have a huge impact on the
human body, sea-life, and the ecosystem, and consequently, they reject the idea
of building more nuclear reactors. So is it proper for the world to use nuclear
energy in the future? There are two outstanding essays wrote by two authorities
scientists. First one was written by Ernest Moniz from MIT. His article “Why we
still need nuclear power” states that nuclear energy should be used as an
important resource to replace other energy resources. However, another
scientist Joshua M. Pearce from Michigan Technological University deprecate this
opinion and wrote an essay “Limitations of Nuclear Power as a Sustainable
Energy Source”. His opinion is that the world should stop using nuclear energy
due to the dangerousness and high price of the nuclear energy.

 

Discussion:

 

In
Ernest Moniz’s article “Why we still need nuclear power”. He states three main
reasons to support his idea. The nuclear energy is much safer than other kinds
of energy resource. The nuclear energy is good for the environment. The nuclear
energy is cheaper. To justify these points, I did a research on each details with
its supporting points. The article wrote by Ernest Moniz conclude that: doing
safe nuclear energy are not easy steps. But each is needed to reduce
uncertainty for the public, the energy companies, and investors. A more
productive approach to developing nuclear power and confronting the mounting
risks of climate change is long overdue. There is no deny to invest and install
more advanced nuclear reactor.

 

Nuclear
energy is much safer.

 

Moniz
mentioned that in the 40 years since the first Fukushima reactor was
commissioned, seismology and the science of flood hazards have made tremendous
progress.

 

There
are advanced sensors, modeling, and other new capabilities.

 

The
new knowledge needs to be brought to bear not only when designing new power
plants but also when revisiting the requirements at older plants, as was
happening at Fukushima before the tsunami.

 

Outdated
safety requirements should not be kept in place. 

 

So
that, all this equipment in nuclear reactor have good protection facility and
are all in the most advanced situation.

 

Also
in David Brown’s article “nuclear power is the safest way to make electricity,
according to study” he mentioned that compared with nuclear power, coal is
responsible for five times as many worker deaths from accidents, 470 times as
many deaths due to air pollution among members of the public, and more than
1,000 times as many cases of serious illness, according to a study of the
health effects of electricity generation in Europe.

 

 “Coal is so much more dangerous than nuclear
it’s not funny” written by Kelly Dickerson also proved the safeness of nuclear
energy. In her article, she found that despite the three major nuclear
accidents the world has experienced, nuclear power prevented an average of over
1.8 million net deaths worldwide between 1971-2009,” the report reads.

 

“This
amounts to at least hundreds and more likely thousands of times more deaths
than it caused.”

 

And
Nuclear power also prevented about 64 gigatonnes of carbon from being released
into the atmosphere between 1971 and 2009.

 

In
other words, according to the report, it cut about 15 times more emissions
than it has created.

 

Moniz
also states that nuclear energy is good for the environment, he thinks that
nuclear energy is a partial solution that has proved workable on a large scale.

Countries will need to pursue a combination of strategies to cut emissions,
including reining in energy demand, replacing coal power plants with cleaner
natural gas plants, and investing in new technologies such as renewable energy
and carbon capture and sequestration. The government’s role should be to help
provide the private sector with a well-understood set of options, including
nuclear power—not to prescribe the desired market share for any specific
technology. The nuclear energy institute gives its support by saying that
Protecting the environment at nuclear power plants extends to safely managing
used fuel, protecting water quality, and preserving and improving habitat for
plants and wildlife. All U.S. nuclear energy facilities have extensive
environmental programs, which are under the oversight of the U.S. Nuclear
Regulatory Commission and state regulators. In a report named “Nuclear power s
the greenest option, say top scientists” written by Steve Connor. He mentioned
that nuclear energy as well as reducing the sources of carbon dioxide, the
chief man-made greenhouse gas implicated in climate change, the expansion of
nuclear power will leave more land to support biodiversity and so curb the
extinction of species.

 

Moreover,
Moniz thought that nuclear energy is more cheaper than Nuclear power enjoys low
operating costs, which can make it competitive on the basis of the electricity
price needed to recover the capital investment over a plant’s lifetime. And if
governments eventually cap carbon dioxide emissions through either an emissions
charge or a regulatory requirement, as they are likely to do in the next decade
or so, then nuclear energy will be more attractive relative to fossil fuels.  An article published by Canada West
Foundation mentioned that

Nuclear
power requires high upfront investment, but the result is a low leveled cost of
electricity (LCOE). If carbon pricing is factored in, it drops even lower,
making nuclear an economical long-term choice. Once the infrastructure is
built, operating costs are low for this non-renewable resource, in large part
because exponentially less fuel is needed than coal or gas to generate
comparable wattage. It’s also reliable, which makes it valuable for the money,
and would do well – especially alongside hydro – as a baseload power backup for
renewable development to support service electrification.

 

However,
there are still arguments about the availability of using nuclear energy as the
main energy source. Joshua M. Pearce. From Michigan Technological University
argue that there is a huge limitation on nuclear energy and wrote an article
named “Limitations of Nuclear Power as a Sustainable Energy Source” to oppose
Ernest Moniz’s idea. In this document, he mentions three points. Nuclear energy
could make the environment worse. Nuclear will cost a lot that it is not
economic-friendly and nuclear power is not safe.

The
nuclear energy could not help to protect the environment but made it worse. In
his opinion according to current commercialized technologies, nuclear power is
dependent on the mining of a finite (although sometimes hotly debated
quantity/quality) of uranium-rich ore. Uranium ore is mined both in surface
(strip) mines and deep underground. Much like the mining and processing of
other materials, uranium mining, processing and enrichment can leave
substantial damage to the nearby ecosystems and waterways. So that the nuclear
energy could bring huge damage to the ecosystem and made the environment worse.

Also according to the article from PSR, uranium, which must be removed from the
ground, is used to fuel nuclear reactors. Uranium mining, which creates serious
health and environmental problems, has disproportionately impacted indigenous
people because much of the world’s uranium is located under indigenous land.

Uranium miners experience higher rates of lung cancer, tuberculosis, and other
respiratory diseases. The production of 1,000 tons of uranium fuel generates
approximately 100,000 tons of radioactive tailings and nearly one million
gallons of liquid waste containing heavy metals and arsenic in addition to
radioactivity. In total nuclear energy could contaminate the environment and
bring a huge impact on human health. As a result, nuclear energy should not be
used anymore.

 

The
nuclear is not economic-friendly.  In
Joshua’s word that Nuclear power plants have become notorious for high
construction costs—as many projects throughout the world have resulted in
construction costs that doubled or tripled the original estimate, followed by
frequent and expensive repairs. This was the fundamental reason for the dearth
of new nuclear power plant orders in the last few decades. Also, A 2014
analysis by the financial adversary firm Lazard captures the economics
holding back nuclear expansion. Lazard pegs the cost of building nuclear
capacity in the United States at $5.4 million to $8.4 million per megawatt.

Adding operating, maintenance, and fuel costs yield an average lifetime cost of
$92 to $132 for every megawatt-hour generated. That is far above
the unsubsidized costs of utility-scale solar power ($72 to $86 per
megawatt-hour) and onshore wind ($37 to $81 per megawatt-hour). Power from new
natural-gas-fired plants is also far cheaper than nuclear at $61 to $87 per
megawatt-hour. So nuclear energy could be a worse choice due to high price.

 

Joshua
also proposed that nuclear power is not safe by saying that the nuclear power
necessarily creates an infrastructure where nuclear materials and expertise for
nuclear weapon fabrication may proliferate. Thus, continued use and development
of nuclear technology carries serious proliferation risks, especially in light
of the 9/11 terrorist attacks against the U.S., as well as continued unrest in
the Middle East. Weapons-applicable nuclear technology has been developed or
obtained by non-signatory Nuclear Proliferation Treaty countries such as India,
North Korea, and Pakistan. There is a case Chernobyl is considered the world’s
worst nuclear disaster to date. It occurred on April 26, 1986, when a sudden
surge in power during a reactor systems test resulted in an explosion and fire
that destroyed Unit 4. Massive amounts of radiation escaped and spread across
the western Soviet Union and Europe. As a result of the disaster, approximately
220,000 people had to be relocated from their homes. Nowadays lots of countries
have taken action to make sure the safety of their country. Japan scrapped
plans for 14 new reactors, and all of its 48 operable reactors remain closed
for safety reviews and upgrades. Germany decided to shutter its 17 reactors,
which had supplied a quarter of its power, by 2022. France, which still
gets a higher percentage of its power from nuclear than any other country,
elected a president promising to slash nuclear’s contribution from
three-quarters of the supply to one-half by 2025.

 

In
summary, through the two main arguments from Ernest Moniz and Joshua M. Pearce.

Nuclear energy could have lots of advantage to protect the environment, save
money and safe human’s life but its needs high-pollution raw material, a lot of
construction fees and when it have accidents, it could give human unprecedented
accidents. However, for its danger and accidents, the starting possibility is
quite small, we could hardly find any other case apart from the example from
the article. As a result, the accident should not be the problem leading to the
reduction using nuclear energy. Also with the quick development of the modern
nuclear reactor technology, the reactor will be much safer. Moreover, the cost
will decrease in the future when there is more technology research. As a
result, nuclear energy should keep in use as a very important resource to
replace other carbon-dioxide-emission fuel.

 

Through
this research, I improve a lot of knowledge about the flaw of nuclear energy.

The pollution made by exploring Uranium will make the environment worse. The
remnant will cause pollution on land and river and cause the broken of
eco-system. Also, the nuclear energy could cause a lot of accidents. However,
after this research, my opinion still remains the same cause we could like
found more benefits than flaws since the pollution made by burning fossil fuel
is a tremendous problem all around the world and a huge proportion population
around the world were suffer from air pollution and have a high rate of cancer.

As a result, only the nuclear energy can solve the urgent need.

 

 

Reference list:

CANADA
WEST FOUNDATION (April 18 2017) Embracing nuclear for Canada’s energy future |
part two: Nuclear energy is cheap energy. Available from: http://cwf.ca/news/blog/embracing-nuclear-for-canadas-energy-future-part-two-nuclear-energy-is-cheap-energy/Accessed 20th 2017

 

David
Brown (April 2 2011) Nuclear power is safest way to make electricity according
to study. Available from: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/nuclear-power-is-safest-way-to-make-electricity-according-to-2007-study/2011/03/22/AFQUbyQC_story.html?utm_term=.0961371988a1Accessed 20th December
2017

 

 

Ernest
Moniz (Nov/Dec 2011) Why we still need nuclear power Available from: http://energy.mit.edu/news/why-we-still-need-nuclear-power/Accessed 4th January
2018

 

Joshua M.

Pearce (7 June 2012) Limitations of Nuclear Power as a Sustainable Energy
Source. Available from: www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/4/6/1173/pdfAccessed 4th January
2018

 

Kelly
Dickerson (Dec. 1, 2015, 6:23AM) Coal is so much more dangerous than nuclear
it’s not funny. Available from: http://www.businessinsider.com/nuclear-power-safer-than-coal-2015-11Accessed 27th December
2017

 

Nuclear
Energy Institute (July 2015) Nuclear Power Plants: Protecting Air, Water, Soil
and Wildlife. Available from: https://www.nei.org/Master-Document-Folder/Backgrounders/Fact-Sheets/Nuclear-Energy-and-the-EnvironmentAccessed 2nd January
2018

 

Perter
Fairley (May 28th 2015) Why Don’t We Have More Nuclear Power?
Available from: https://www.technologyreview.com/s/537816/why-dont-we-have-more-nuclear-power/Accessed 27th December
2017

 

 

Steve
Connor (4th January 2015) Nuclear power is the greenest option, say
top scientists. Available from: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/nuclear-power-is-the-greenest-option-say-top-scientists-9955997.htmlAccessed 3rd January
2018

 

Travis
Madsen, Frontier Group Johanna Neumann, Maryland PIRG Foundation Emily Rusch,
CalPIRG Education Fund (March 2009) The High Cost of Nuclear Power-Why America
Should Choose a Clean Energy Future over New Nuclear Reactors. Available from:https://www.nirs.org/wp-content/uploads/nukerelapse/calvert/highcostnpower_mdpirg.pdfAccessed 1st January 2018

 

U.S.

Energy Information Administration (January 10 2017) Nuclear Explained –Nuclear
Power and the Environment. Available from: https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.cfm?page=nuclear_environmentAccessed 28th December 2017

 

World Nuclear Association (January 2016) Asia’s Nuclear Energy Growth. Available
from:  http://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/country-profiles/others/asias-nuclear-energy-growth.aspxAccessed 5th January 2018