Nuclear energy, which has historically been depicted as a dangerous and evil energy source, has recently seen renewed attention as an alternative form of energy and has been rehabilitated in the eyes of the public after rising concerns regarding global warming and a rise in the demand of energy (World Nuclear Association 2011). However, due to the March 2011 Fukushima accident,
When you hear the word “nuclear”, what do you think of? Does the thought scare you, intrigue you, or have no effect at all? Nuclear energy has been a part of our lives for many years. Some events that included nuclear power included the Cold War and the Chernobyl disaster. These events have changed how people view nuclear energy. Nuclear power is used all around the world to create efficient energy, but it can also be used to create weapons and destructive material. Nuclear power has proven to be clean, efficient and cost effect; the Chernobyl disaster revealed to the world why we needed to change training, safety procedure, and the structure of the plant itself.
Nuclear power, the type of energy that sits on the edge of humanity’s greatest hopes, and its darkest fears. With a country such as the United States continuing to expand its industry, housing, agriculture and commercial buildings there is a need for more and more energy each year. Nuclear power is one of the many ways the United States gets its energy. Nevertheless, it is one of the most controversial means of energy production. The main concern with nuclear energy is the nuclear waste that is produced along with it. The potential health and environmental risks posed by nuclear waste is what truly scares some of the American public. Therefore, is the amount of energy output by nuclear power plants outweigh the potential risks that nuclear waste can have on human health and the environment? Nuclear power plants should be kept as a means of generating energy for the United States, however, transportation and storage of nuclear waste needs to continuously be checked for safer alternatives.
Nuclear energy is the energy released by a nuclear reaction, it uses fuel made from mined and processed uranium to generate heat and electricity. It is the world’s largest emission free energy source. Nuclear energy also has the lowest impact on the environment than other energy sources. But it can still be very harmful because of the radiation is causes and the radioactive waste it produces. Radioactive wastes are the ruins of nuclear materials that are used in providing nuclear energy. These wastes contain high levels of radiation that can be very hazardous to humans and the environment. Some people accept and support the idea of using nuclear energy and others don’t. In the following paragraphs, some major nuclear accidents and the public acceptance of nuclear energy will be discussed.
Nuclear power is the use of sustained nuclear fission, splitting atoms in two, which releases energy in the process to generate heat and electricity. Heat created by fission drives the turbines that generate electricity. When nuclear power was first created it was predicted that it would be very successful. It was also predicted that nuclear power would be “too cheap to meter,” that is electricity would be very cheap so either consumers would not be charged for electricity at all or the prices would be very low (Cohn, 1997). Although nuclear power is still in use today the initial success of nuclear industry eventually declined. Nuclear industry and its supporters claim that nuclear power is environmentally friendly, inexpensive, and safe,
Whoosh, Eureka! The steam spun the wheel of the turbine. The ecstasy of finding a new energy source is ineffable, and when one was found the discovery always immediately prompted a race to use the newfound source. In accordance with this behavior many sought to integrate nuclear power into society upon its development. The difference is nuclear energy is far more complicated and powerful than anything the field of energy has dealt with thus far. Consequently, there is a hesitance to its utilization as it is difficult to discuss the complexities of the process with the public without some misinterpretation. Ergo, this paper will attempt to inform the reader as to the benefits of nuclear power. Nuclear power in the U.S. is under harsh debate
Nuclear power has been one of the largest contributors of energy for the past fifty years. With the end of World War II, research into nuclear energies shifted away from war applications to simply using it to power the world. Nuclear power was regarded as the never ending energy source that would bring an end to energy problems and power the whole world. For many years it seemed to work with no problems; however, that was a short lived reality. As problems with nuclear energy came to light, many believed it was a better investment for the future to research and develop new energy sources or just continue using fossil fuels. Many believe the risks and downsides of nuclear power outweigh the benefits. However, there are still many advocates of nuclear power that believe it is the best energy source for the world for reasons such as its large production of energy, their belief that it is not a major harm to the environment, and their belief that it is better than the other energy alternatives. However, in spite of these beliefs and facts, research into nuclear power opposes the belief that nuclear power should be the main contributor of power because they are expensive to build and can result in a catastrophic situations.
For the most part, when people hear the word nuclear they instantly have images pop into mind. They think of atomic bombs, nuclear fallout, radiation poisoning, and sometimes the end of the world. These views have impacted the amount of nuclear energy in the United States it produces only 8.5% of the U.S. total energy. (IER, 2016) Though this is substantially more than other alternative sources of energy it is still quite minor compared to fossil fuels. These views appear to be generally shared across the globe with Nuclear power supplying only 11% of the world’s electricity. Though 13 countries rely on nuclear energy for over a quarter of their energy needs with France the highest at 72.3%. (NEI, 2017)
With the ever increasing population, [energy demand, and the need for alternative resources continues to increase.] Nuclear energy comes up as a strong contender by being clean, sustainable, and more consistent moreover than others in the renewables category. Even though those in the energy industry argue that the use of nuclear plants provides a stable source of power in a clean and renewable matter, in areas where other resources are available, the potential threat of nuclear meltdowns outweigh the positive benefits of nuclear energy as cleanups cost billions because of decontamination and unusable land so the number of nuclear power plants should be restricted so the risk of national and worldwide economic damage is minimized.
While some say nuclear power is risky, the facts prove otherwise. Nuclear energy is often treated as a taboo subject due to misconceptions throughout history by the public, but in actuality, nuclear energy is relatively safe, when practiced correctly. Nuclear energy is a process in which atoms are split, producing heat, which boils water. The steam then turns a turbine to produce electricity. While fission is involved in nuclear bombs, the process in each are both different. The ‘fuel’ used for this process is Uranium-235, an isotope of uranium. Nuclear energy, contrary to popular belief, does not describe the horrible power of nuclear explosive, but the calculated, safe procedure of releasing the fundamental power of the atom. The pros of nuclear energy firmly outweigh the cons of the issue. If the people responsible for the facilities that the energy is produced in follow safety procedures the cons are nearly reduced to nothing. Not only is it a completely green energy source, but the power output is immense, and uranium is such a common material that is used so infrequently means that it will last for an extremely long time.
Since the start if the industrial revolution there has been an ongoing increase in the demand for power. The level of power needed is expected to increase, and in recent years there has been a great deal of attention paid to the way in which that power need may be met in a manner that is not detrimental to the environment. One of the more controversial power sources is that of Nuclear power. Nuclear power is know to have the potential to provide relativity long term, high levels of power which does not have the environmental costs associated with the burring of fossil fuels (Chu and Majumdar, 2012). However, while there is a great deal of potential, there are also some valid safety concerns; the Chernobyl meltdown is well known for both the environmental damage and the cost on human life, more recently there are concerns about the defunct Fukushima nuclear plan in Japan, which failed following an earthquake and is now leaking radio active water into the ocean (Adelman and Watanabe, 2013). With both potential benefits and challenges the future of nuclear power appears to be uncertain.
Energy is an essential aspect of life that has influenced human research for generations. The pursuit for sources of energy has lead to human dependency on fossil fuels and other sources such as coal. These energy resources were useful but they are slowly depleting and aren’t a long-term resource. With this in mind humans have sought for improved forms of energy; this has lead to many new forms of energy and innovations. An energy resource that was discovered was Nuclear Energy. Nuclear energy has made its way into the demographic of human energy resources. Do the benefits of nuclear energy out weigh the risk and cost? Can this form of energy uphold against scrutiny based on its negative effects and if so is it a long-term resource? Nuclear energy has advanced significantly but with this progression there are many risks, risks that may cause the future of nuclear energy use to be unclear. Throughout my research I discovered the types of nuclear reactions that are developed in order to create nuclear energy, consumption levels of nuclear energy has increased in recent years in areas such as the USA, the hazards that are always associated with nuclear energy, the amount of capital needed to create the essential environment for production, maintenance of these environments, storing of the products produced by nuclear reactions and expert based opinions on nuclear power’s effect on the world and its future as an energy source.
After the catastrophic event at Fukushima the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has increased safety requirements on current and new reactors. The changes to the nuclear industry include the construction of new next-generation reactors, more detailed safety requirements, and increased use of new technology. The advanced third generation (III+) reactors will have an “advanced reactor that provides a simplified design,
Nuclear energy has been a topic of world debate since its invention, with both clear upsides and downsides the topic of universal nuclear energy use has been subject to controversy and public scrutiny, but also scientific and economic praise. The field of nuclear energy and its driving forces were originally studied in the time around 1895 and the technology was mostly researched as a weapon for the military, around the time of 1935-1945 nuclear energy research witnessed a major boom. As most know, in 1945 nearing the end of World War II the United States gave nuclear energy its first public showcase by dropping two atomic bombs on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But, after that point the U.S. wanted to change the way that the world look at nuclear energy, Mitchell Waldrop a leader in the study of nuclear energy stated, “Originally developed in the late 1940s as a compact power source for nuclear ships and submarines, the light-water design was adapted and scaled up during the 1950s, when the United States sought to put a peaceful face on atomic energy by creating a commercial nuclear-power industry.” (Waldrop, 2012, pg. 27) Nuclear energy since the dropping of the atomic bombs in Japan has taken a severe impact in the form of public ridicule which would lead to decades of establishing the technology as safe and beneficial. After this point, around the 60’s and 70’s despite lower public option scientists continued to make an effort to make nuclear energy a feasible
Nuclear power plants being so defenseless and having such a high rate for accident. The words accident and contamination flashed, in her head, like a weather bulletin. It was a regular day the kids had left for school and Shina was just straightening up around the house. She heard a loud weird siren coming from the nuclear power plant. One of the nuclear cores had over heated and the town was being evacuated. Chernobyl “suffered the worst accident, “on April 26, 1986, the reactor blew like a ton of dynamite sending the “top of the reactor” in to the air, and containments “buried” in the “biosphere for days” (Lewis 25). The containments buried in the air, which was harmful to people’s health. The contamination in the air would spread to other places, and cause damage