Because we all know an energy commodity can’t rocket 10x in price in the span of a decade due to increasing global demand…
Natural gas is a pretty terrible option, environmentally. Though maybe if we treated the by-products of fossil fuel plants like radioactive waste, things would be working a bit better.
What do you mean by more efficient? It’s certainly not cheaper than coal.
These people aren’t the ones holding up nuclear plants.
We can’t just dump a bunch of Gen IV reactors out there. They’ve been designed and sound in theory. But it’s really hard to predict how they hold up over the entire lifetime of the plant operating under conditions that are brand new. Check out the Davis-Besse reactor head incident from 6 or 7 years ago. The bottlenecks are more materials science issues than anything to do with nuclear science specifically.
Ultimately, there are plenty of ways to make electricity. It’s oil that’s going to be the problem.
I had a nicely worded post about how anti-nuclear speech is primarily alarmist propaganda complete with first-hand information from my dad. Then I hit preview and saw that Charles had already said it so succinctly.
While that’s true, most attempts to produce electricity have consequences. For example, clean coal happens because of filters that end up being ridiculously polluted themselves and require long-term isolation in an underground location. Not to mention the impact of strip mining coal in the first place. Then you have dams, which are great except for the environmental impact on things like salmon. Or maybe you’d prefer wind turbines, but then there’s the acres of land covered with those, the impact on birds flying into them, and then the massive transmission lines that have to be built to plug a windfarm into the grid.
I could go on, but what I’m saying is that all sources of energy have an environmental cost. It’s going to take a mix of things to carrry us into the future, so I’d rather we not write off any of them quite yet.
Personally I think we’re all underestimating Human Power. Now, this may sound out there, but here me out:
If your community doesn’t want a (nuclear, coal, nat. gas, wind) plant near you, that’s fine. But the members of that community have to do their part. So every week, x numbers are designated as “community runners,” and are made to generate the electricity themselves. I haven’t quite worked out the details, but right now I’m imagining one of those things in cartoons, where the people are walking in circles and the guy with the whip is right there making sure everyone is contributing to neighborhood development. That would solve the NIMBY problem, I think.
Or we could pull our heads out of our asses and go nuclear. But I’m not an economist.