Nuclear Energy Is Almost Here

More and more people are realising that renewables cannot meet the world’s energy needs. Nuclear on the other hand is clean, safe and reliable.

AP Photo/ Virginia Mayo

Assembly of the world’s largest nuclear fusion project is underway. At a facility in Saint-Paul-lez-Durance, southern France, the U.S. and six other countries have launched what has been described as “the most complicated piece of engineering anybody has ever attempted.” Called the Iter Project, it is set to replicate the reactions that power the sun. If it works, it’ll prove that nuclear fusion power can be generated on a commercial scale—paving the way for unlimited clean energy production.

This monumental step forward in the development of nuclear technology comes as the government lifts its ban on financing global nuclear projects. Until very recently, the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) explicitly prohibited investing in the production of radioactive materials, including in nuclear reactors.

But that outdated rule is now undone, and it marks a welcome new chapter for the energy sector. Indeed, the nuclear industry has sat idle for too long. Powerful businesspeople with vested interests in the fossil fuel industry have used their political influence to obstruct its progress. Big Oil would rather deny that climate change exists than give up its hold on the market, even if that means rejecting cheap, safe and effective solutions.

Meanwhile, eco-socialists have become fixated on quirky but unscalable methods of renewable energy production, like wind farms and solar panels. But wind farms decapitate birds, and solar panels ruin otherwise lovely views—and accomplish little else. Small-fry investments like that can plug the odd gap here and there, but they are a million miles away from catering to humanity’s needs.

The successor to fossil fuels must be a titan that can take on the bulk of the world’s energy production, and nuclear is the only viable option. It’s clean and safe. It has all the advantages of fossil fuels, with none of the planet-destroying cost. And yet, it still accounts for barely 10% of electricity produced globally.

Nuclear power is several hundred times safer than any other method of energy generation, even taking into account once-in-a-generation disasters like Chernobyl. A world powered by nuclear wouldn’t be some post-apocalyptic hellscape with toxic radiation leaks and enhanced atom bombs, as anti-nuclear campaigners would have you believe. It would be a clean, green future in which climate change would be a thing of the past.

More and more people are coming around to nuclear energy. Zion Lights was formerly a spokesperson for Extinction Rebellion, a rigidly anti-nuclear eco-socialist group. Now, she is one of the foremost pro-nuclear campaigners in the world. Lights explains that nuclear is the answer to all her environmentalist prayers. She notes that while eco-socialist activists rightly criticise climate denialists for their rejection of environmental science, they are guilty of the same offense in their dismissal of nuclear.

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The post Nuclear Energy Is Almost Here appeared first on The Global Warming Policy Forum (GWPF).

via The Global Warming Policy Forum (GWPF)

August 11, 2020 at 12:30PM

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