Today’s reactors are large scale, long-term construction projects requiring very large up front capital costs. This, more than any other factor, has inhibited the further expansion of nuclear power around the world. But does that have to be the case?
Not at all. Advances in nuclear technology have certainly been thwarted by the decision in 1994 to terminate US Government funded R&D in this field.
It’s predicted that world population will top out at around 9 billion by mid century and then gradually decline thereafter.
It’s anticipated that global energy demand will double, or perhaps even triple, by mid century. For a bunch of good reasons outlined here, it is unrealistic to imagine that overall energy demand can be reduced within the timeframe in which we need to tackle climate change.
You’ll be surprised at what is in the fine print of the studies that show the United States could produce all its energy from renewable sources by 2050.
After 20 years of intense effort in building out its wind and solar capacity, with enormous and ultimately unsustainable government subsidies, Germany now gets about 5% of its electricity from solar and a little over 7% from wind.
When I was eight years old, I started an environmental group in my mother’s basement. At eighteen, in a blaze of civil disobedience and a pair of golden hot pants, I pitched my tent at Climate Camp.
According to the world’s leading climate scientists: “In the real world there is no credible path to climate stabilization that does not include a substantial role for nuclear power.”
After 900 explosions over 40 years, the nuclear test-ban treaty put an end to the most bizarre tourist spectacle in recent history. We have not always been so frightened of the scintillating atom – even when we have had very good reason to be.