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Power Earth Politics

Slashdot Asks: Do You Support Nuclear Energy? (gallup.com) 485

Reader mdsolar writes that for the first time a majority of Americans have told Gallup they oppose nuclear energy. Support peaked at 62% in 2010, but "as Americans have paid less at the pump, their level of worry about the nation's energy situation has dropped to 15-year-low levels," Gallup reports. Their latest poll found 44% of respondents still supported nuclear energy, while 54% opposed it, a trend which could eventually affect the future of nuclear power. The New York Times reports that operating licenses will expire for 36 of America's 99 reactors between 2029 and 2035. What do you think? How strongly do you support (or oppose) generating electricity with nuclear energy?
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Slashdot Asks: Do You Support Nuclear Energy?

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    In light of the incompetance of the company behind the massive gas leak at Porter Ranch, no, I don't trust a profit-motivated company with a nuclear reactor.

  • by hey! ( 33014 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:09PM (#51783169) Homepage Journal

    If you're asking for a blanket condemnation or endorsement of nuclear power, all I can say is, "it depends".

    It depends on what specifically you're proposing to build, how you specifically plan to manage and monitor it, and how you specifically intend to decommission them when they're at the end of their usefulness.

    • I would if they were of newer inherently safe designs that self moderate when things go south. Second, only smaller units that are in the 10s of Mega Watts at most of output. Third, Thorium/Uranium cycle, not Uranium?Plutonium cycle. Fourth, funds forced into long term investments that are locked into only being available for decommissioning and are not under the control of the power producer. Fifth, Scaled production of standardized parts. Sixth, shared tech with other countries and at cost assistance
  • Yes. No need to build special storage facilities for the waste when there are places like Detroit to dump it.
  • by sbaker ( 47485 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:09PM (#51783173) Homepage

    I support nuclear energy in the short to medium term because it's the only realistic way to replace coal, oil and natural gas - and thereby save the planet from global climate change. That's a short-term emergency - and we're not likely to be able to either cut back our energy use, or replace CO2-producing energy with renewables in time.

    So we're left with the lesser of three evils: No energy, Rising CO2 levels, Nuclear accidents.

    I'd hope that modern reactors (ie not Chernobyl era junk), intelligently placed (like not in the middle of a city, and not near a Tsunami-prone coastline like Fukushima) and carefully run (like not Chernobyl and not 3 Mile Island) could reduce the risk of accidents considerably. But even with the rate of severe accidents we've seen so far, the damage we do is far less than with coal/oil/gas.

    I'd hope that we'd get fusion power running - and add smarter solar/wind/tidal sources (hydroelectric dams are starting to look like a bad idea) before too long - but we need uranium/plutonium power sources until that happens.

        -- Steve

    • TMI is a particularly interesting one, and an excellent example of paranoid engineering. It was designed so it would never melt down with lots of redundant safety systems. It was also designed on the assumption that those would all fail for unknown reasons and so when it melted down it would do so safety.

      It was more or less designed so that during a meltdown, the critical blob of melted crap would melt through other things and in doing so dilute itself then spread out and so drop below critical mass. As a r

  • Nuclear energy is supposed to support me and everyone else who uses it...
  • 'nuf said

  • by Chas ( 5144 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:21PM (#51783261) Homepage Journal

    Yes.

    Unless we figure out fusion power quickly (which I'm doubtful of), fission power, combined with existing hydro and thermal solar is our best bet for stable baseline power in this country.
    Renewables like PD solar and wind power, as well as power storage solutions, are best left to cover demand peaks.

    The problem is that so few people know anything more than "nuclear = bomb" and "radiation will kill you", that it's created this vast climate of FUD around nuclear power.

    And all they say when you mention nuclear power is "Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, and Fukushima".

    None of these were failures intrinsic to the reactor.

    Chernobyl: Idiots disabling safety equipment and fucking around with the reactor.

    TMI: Human error compounded by bad control indicators.

    Fukushima: A company cheaping out and not listening to civil engineering with regards to a sea wall meant to stave off large waves.

    We're also talking about reactors based on decades-old technology and Rube Goldberg systems to stave off every possible problem an engineer could envision.

    Rather than just designing a reactor with a default state of "off".

    More modern reactor designs take this sort of thing into account.

    Additionally, people gripe about the amount of nuclear waste being produced. Never mind that most reactors based on this older technology consume, at best, 5% of the actual "fuel" in the medium (rods, pellets, etc) before the medium is removed from the reactor.

    With reprocessing, that fuel can continue to be used for extended periods of time. Resulting in far less long-lived waste, and the remainder being waste that is only being radioactive in the short term.

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      Even if we accept that there won't be any more disasters (unlikely), the cost of 4th generation stuff is even higher than the older, proven tech. That's why people don't build it. The risk of problems being discovered on such a huge investment is too high.

    • by modzer0 ( 1366073 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @05:50PM (#51784003)
      We have four AP1000 Gen 3+ reactors under construction now. These are the shining examples of what the next generation design can be until the NRC approves any gen 4 or the number of MSR reactor designs being proposed. Nuclear can be much safer and more efficient if we can bring more next generation designs with drastically better safety measures online and retire the old units which do have a good safety record, but don't have near the number of safeguards as something like the AP1000 which can be kept safe even with a total loss of power unlike the older generations. Yes I support nuclear, and I support solar and wind, but those not familiar with the power industry don't realize how delicate a balance the grid is with supply and demand. There has to be a source to keep the grid stable with the varying wind and solar input. The best choice for that is nuclear be it fission, or fusion.
      • by MrL0G1C ( 867445 )

        Yes I support nuclear, and I support solar and wind, but those not familiar with the power industry don't realize how delicate a balance the grid is with supply and demand. There has to be a source to keep the grid stable with the varying wind and solar input. The best choice for that is nuclear be it fission, or fusion.

        Eh? Nuclear is useless for load balancing, it supplies a continuous output. And the cost of nuclear at 90% output is not much different from the cost of nuclear at 45% output so if you reduc

  • by vadim_t ( 324782 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:22PM (#51783269) Homepage

    Meaning I'm fine with it existing, but don't have any particularly romantic notions about it either.

    Nuclear power necessarily comes with a long list of downsides. The enormous expense of building a powerplant, the amount of care that needs to be exercised to properly run it, the problem with waste disposal, the problem with that a dismantled powerplant still needs maintenance, the problem that disaster preparation is absolutely essential, the problem that the critical parts of the infrastructure are so highly radioactive it's not even possible to have a camera in them, which means any work on that is enormously expensive...

    And then there's the problem of that if things go wrong it causes the evacuation of a huge amount of the population. Now I know this isn't instant death of course, but it still means that accidents are enormously expensive and insurance is difficult.

    Then there is that all of this critically depends on people, who in many cases have reasons to cut corners in dangerous places.

    Once you take all of that into account, I think it becomes considerably less amazing than it is in theory. IMO, current nuclear power is something that will go away eventually. Many of its downsides aren't going anywhere, so it may well happen that we'll find a way to run a grid purely on solar and wind power, and just accept the downsides of that in exchange for not having to deal with radioactivity.

    That said, I'm all for improving the tech as far as possible and looking into thorium and of course fusion research.

    • There are two problems with nuclear power: waste and disaster risk.

      The solution to both is careful controls, high engineering standards, strong oversight, and expensive maintenance. Those cost money. The Fukushima reactors were built to much higher standards than most US reactors, but still suffered a catastrophe. You can't reduce the risk to zero, but you have to be willing to pay to mitigate those risks.

      To the extent people are willing to pay for those things, I support nuclear power... which means that p

  • by jonwil ( 467024 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:25PM (#51783283)

    I support keeping reactors that already exist running where its safe to do so. But I also support building new nuclear reactors. Not the ancient technology PWR and BWR reactors but modern 4th generation reactors. Ones that can burn the waste products from the old PWRs and BWRs and dont produce waste that has to be stored for thousands of years. Ones that can operate in ways that mean they cant suffer the kind of catastrophic release of radiation that happened at Fukushima.

    4th generation reactors absolutely need to be part of the energy solution as the way to replace the world's dependence on digging dirty black ancient rocks out of the ground and burning them for electricity.

  • by nbritton ( 823086 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:27PM (#51783297)

    Yes I support nuclear energy, it is the only viable solution to meet the world's energy demands and the need for clean energy. Burning coal releases more radioactive martial into the environment then any nuclear plant has. People are scared of radiation and it's unfounded, we are bombarded with radiation on a daily basis from the sun. People are also scared that nuclear plants can blow up like a bomb, but this is complete impossible. The waste they produce can be managed, in fact it can be recycled to produce more fuel. We need to figure out how to harness fusion into a viable solution.

    • by Jeremi ( 14640 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @11:09PM (#51785325) Homepage

      People are also scared that nuclear plants can blow up like a bomb, but this is complete impossible.

      I think that is a mischaracterization. What most people are actually worried about is rather the possibility of a nuclear meltdown that results in significant amounts of radioactive material being released into the environment, which could render the surrounding area largely uninhabitable for decades or longer. That is something that clearly is possible, as demonstrated at Chernobyl and Fukushima.

      Saying that won't ever happen again in the future (because reasons) isn't particularly convincing, since that is what the designers and operators of those nuclear power plants promised also.

  • I've seen it argued that any "indirect" energy source, such as coal burning to boil water,
    nuclear to boil water,
    and then steam --> electrical,
    is going to lose out on cost to any "direct" energy source,
    such as solar-->electrical,
    wind-->electrical,
    natural gas turbine-->electrical.

    The argument is that the extra capital involved in the intermediate steam conversion step is going to price "indirect" power generation above all direct means.

    This seems to be borne out somewhat in the real world, in that

  • Yes (Score:5, Informative)

    by phantomfive ( 622387 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:28PM (#51783305) Journal
    I especially support research in nuclear energy, Thorium reactors are a great place, right on the edge of practicality.
    Also, I support nuclear fusion research, and I think we should fund more of it, and this graph shows why [imgur.com].

    If we can make energy cheaper by an order of magnitude compared to how it is today, that opens the door for some great things.
    • by delt0r ( 999393 )
      The really cool thing about fusion is that we have improved confinement times faster than moores law!

      We have also learnt that international collaborations are hugely expensive due mostly to politics. People think ITER is really expensive. It is true it is not cheap, but a new gas plant with ZERO R&D is still a cool billion dollars and takes a few years to build. A billion dollars a year for a few decades is really not much money in the scheme of things.
  • by trout007 ( 975317 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:32PM (#51783329)

    If we actually kept developing reactors instead of shutting down and holding up progress we would be at the point where they would be safe by now. It's only because of Luddites that we are so far behind our potential. It would be as if we still had to fly on Comets because as everyone knows planes are dangerous. Well no shit if you are flying around in first generation designs.

  • Every type of power plant has a role to fill.

    Nuclear, alongside geothermal and hydroelectric, is well-suited to handling base load. It "throttles" very slowly - you generally want to keep it at a consistent power output. It pairs quite well with hydro (you can use the reservoir for "free" energy storage, letting it fill when load is below what the nuke plant provides, then let it drain when you need peak power), but it's also something that can be used for sole base load pretty much anywhere, whereas geothe

    • by Nemyst ( 1383049 )

      Nuclear, alongside geothermal and hydroelectric, is well-suited to handling base load. It "throttles" very slowly - you generally want to keep it at a consistent power output.

      This is actually a common misconception [wikipedia.org]. Load following nuclear reactors exist and are a fairly common occurrence in countries with a high nuclear power usage such as France (75% of all electricity production). Their reactors are able to scale between 30% and 100% at 5%/minute. More modern Gen IV reactors can equal or surpass this.

  • do you support nuclear research? As it is, there are numerous aging nuclear plants, and not really much to replace them with except theoretical models and tired designs.

    The worst part about the anti-nuke crowd is that they have effectively shuttered research, which means several plants are operating well beyond their intended lifespan. Even if you support going 100% wind and solar, it will have to be implemented piecemeal, which means at least some new nuclear plants will have to bridge the gap. Would you p

  • Very much in favor (Score:4, Insightful)

    by scsirob ( 246572 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:34PM (#51783347)

    I would love to see lots more focus on nucleair energy for multiple reasons. First, it can be a safe and clean energy source for many years to come (think Thorium, MSR). The 'oh it will blow up' folks are hampering progress with outdated arguments. Most current power plants are the Ford Model T of designs. If their arguments would have been lodged against cars then we'd still be driving those. Modern nucleair reactors are inherently safe and can fix many of the waste issues we have from outdated installations today.

    Second is removing the dependency on fossil fuels. Not only will this have positive environmental effects, it will cause a paradigm shift in geo politics. Can you imagine what happens to the Middle East if their stronghold on oil supply becomes irrelevant? When organisations such as Al Quaida and IS see their money supply dry up? It will be a much, much better world for it.

  • by timholman ( 71886 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:37PM (#51783359)

    Ask me instead if I support yet another of mdsolar's endless anti-nuclear, pro-solar postings to Slashdot.

    I get it, mdsolar. Nuclear = BAD! Solar = GOOD! Except for the fact that the sun is a giant nuclear reactor that kills tens of thousands of people every year from radiation-induced cancers. But hey, never let facts get in the way of anti-nuclear diatribes.

  • Yes, I am a nuclear zealot.

    • by CAOgdin ( 984672 )

      The "only way?" Do you have NO faith in future developments that would dramatically reduce the per-capita/per-annum energy cost? Your grandchildren will think you a fool for such a sweeping, thoughtless assertion.

  • by Teun ( 17872 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:41PM (#51783377) Homepage
    (Not American)
    Nuclear energy for generating electricity is technically a viable concept, many years ago I was even trained to work on it.
    Yet I don't believe disadvantages like security, safety and especially the very long term storage of the left overs makes it a good proposition for large scale deployment.

    Nuclear energy has a place, but only in the form of fail safe generators and for very specific uses like aircraft carriers and submarines.
    Once stationary there are plenty of sustainable alternatives that are already competing on price providing you consider the long-term costs of the present type of nuclear generators.

    After installing PV nearly a year ago I've calculated that with a €15,000 - 20,000 investment I could for the next 25 - 30 years be totally independent of any other energy, that includes road transport.
    The cost of maintenance consists of saving for a replacement and some battery changes.

    Sustainable or renewable energy sources are sufficiently mature to shy away from the real problems surrounding present day nuclear, the remaining cost issues for renewable are mainly distribution and storage.
    Distribution is a NIMBY problem so it can be solved near-instantaneously, storage is to be split in smallish scale local (your 1st and 2nd hand Tesla batteries) and large scale central solutions.
    Safe central storage could be molten salt and the use of ammonia to be made of excess electricity and when demand requires it to be burned in conventional turbines.
  • Just needs better oversight. Nuclear can be done perfectly safely. The only danger with anything is politics.

  • It never ceases to amaze me that whenever the price of gas goes down for a while Americans assume that the price will stay low for a long time. Then they run out and make long-term decisions, like buying cars, based on that assumption.

    However, I would add that the poll doesn't seem to prove or even really suggest that the cause for the decrease in support for nuclear energy has anything to do with the price of gas. The article only appears to assume that that is the case, so it's no better.

  • by benjfowler ( 239527 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @03:52PM (#51783433)

    Weigh the risks of current nuclear technology, versus the risk of our ongoing coddling of vile Islamist regimes, like the Saudis. I know which one I would choose.

    • Perhaps a combination of solar/wind/hydro/tidal/geothermal could blunt the excessive influence currently enjoyed by the sheikdoms just as effectively, *and* spare us the nuclear-nutter circle-jerk.

      Why should a critical activity such as power generation be concentrated in the hands of *any* elite?

  • In principle, yes. And in practice, also yes. Sure, there are serious difficulties; but as with almost everything else, the problems are people problems, not technology problems. How can you stop some people from cheating, skimping, cutting corners, profiteering? (I like the Chinese solution: shoot every proven offender "pour encourager les autres". Seriously: anyone who takes unnecessary risks with nuclear power deserves to be shot).

    I'd like to suggest that our willingness (or otherwise) to accept nuclear

  • In short, current technology - no. I have high hopes for thorium reactors [csmonitor.com], if we ever put the money into making them viable.
  • Like the Toshiba 4s [wikipedia.org], which is completely self-contained and doesn't even need a "control room". It only gives 10Mw, but doesn't need refueling for 30 years. Of course this is far too small for a modern city, but Toshiba said they are working on one at 50Mw. Still, this would need 10,000 to run a city the size of Dallas (with the 50Mw), but self-contained no-maintenance is the way forward. These would especially be useful combined with renewables that are dependent on sunlight, wind, etc.
  • Travelling Wave Reactors https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traveling_wave_reactor [wikipedia.org] are perfectly safe. There is no reason to stop using nuclear power, we just need to start being smart about it.

  • by bored ( 40072 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @04:27PM (#51783587)

    But, I put the blame for climate just as strongly at the feet of Green Peace and similar ignorant environmentalist who cry louder about nuclear energy than they do about coal and NG plants. If they actually supported Nukes rather than throwing years of lawsuits at them, then we wouldn't still be talking about climate change, we would have converted huge swaths of our power generation to nukes, gone through a few growing pains/generation of technology and by now the resulting economies of scale and control systems would have been worked out to the point where buying electric cars and such were a no brainier.

    Instead we are still having this conversation, and in 5/10 years when gas is back at $5-8/gallon and NG prices spike back up, we will be experiencing rolling blackouts as we fight to stabilize wind/etc or still wondering why the air quality sucks and we still haven't' cut back on our greenhouse gas emissions.Likely a bit of both if the wind farms in TX are an example.

  • by CanadianMacFan ( 1900244 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @04:32PM (#51783611)

    A couple of years ago the government of Ontario put out a request for a couple of new reactors and the lowest cost was $26B. I have no problems with the technology but when reactors are coming in at over $10B each there's no way these can be affordable. (Especially in Ontario where the salaries of people working at power production plants are extreme!)

    You could buy the equivalent in wind and solar production for much, much less, then spend a pile of money on used car batteries for storage and probably have the same capacity without spending $26B.

  • by Morgaine ( 4316 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @05:18PM (#51783853)

    Nuclear energy (from fission) has a very large number of disadvantages. Here are just a few:

    - It's inherently and obviously risky --- even its greatest proponents know that, but they just choose to minimize the importance of that risk and its deadly consequences. There have been more than enough nuclear reactor disasters already, yet some people just don't learn. Even with better designs, accidents will happen from geophysical causes and through human failure, as well as by deliberate action. You can't prevent this from happening, so don't create such deadly installations (and juicy targets) in the first place.

    - Radioactive waste from fission accumulates a massive liability for future generations. It forces our own chosen risk onto our descendents without giving them any choice in the matter. This is unethical even in the best of cases, but in the worst case it's downright criminal because some of those radioactive stores will unavoidably release their contents (even explosively with human help) and result in human casualties and suffering --- maybe your own descendents. Don't gamble with the lives of others.

    - Nuclear energy is out of step with a world that is rapidly converting to clean, inexhaustible energy harnessed from the environment. Nuclear is not just unclean but deadly unclean, and it's very demanding on the planet's resources as well. It adds to our debt on the planet instead of reducing it.

    - According to a growing number of climatologists who are witnessing first-hand the unfolding climate disaster in the Arctic and Antarctic, our existing several hundred nuclear reactors could quite possibly be the direct cause of our extinction in the decades ahead, after the indirect cause (CO2 and methane) lead to death by starvation of billions and make the world's economies collapse. Nuclear reactors can't be rapidly turned off and made non-radioactive --- the full process of decommissioning takes some 50 to 60 years as an industry average, and it takes a LOT of money. There will be no money available under conditions of economic collapse, cooling will be interrupted, and many will go into meltdown. Even if you choose to disbelieve the warnings of specialists, the risk remains. Knowing what we already know about rising sea levels and epic storms, we should not be adding to the risk.

    Dr. Brice Smith of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research summarized this very well:

    "Nuclear power is a very risky and unsustainable option for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Trading one potentially catastrophic health, environmental and security threat for another is not a sensible energy policy." --- Source [ieer.org].

    The whole idea of adding more nuclear power is hazardous and ill-considered, and it's also unnecessary.

    • by Firethorn ( 177587 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @07:19PM (#51784453) Homepage Journal

      It's inherently and obviously risky

      Which is why it's killed hundreds of thousands... Oh wait, it kills and injures fewer people per TWh [kenyon.edu] than wind and rooftop solar?

      Radioactive waste from fission accumulates a massive liability for future generations.

      Mostly because we're not allowed to reprocess the waste to extract the medium level radioactive stuff that would still be useful in the reactor.

      Nuclear energy is out of step with a world that is rapidly converting to clean, inexhaustible energy harnessed from the environment.

      Actually, we've been converting to the 'better than coal' but still very much exhaustible natural gas.

      According to a growing number of climatologists who are witnessing first-hand the unfolding climate disaster in the Arctic and Antarctic, our existing several hundred nuclear reactors could quite possibly be the direct cause of our extinction in the decades ahead,

      The former doesn't lead to the latter. Hell, given that they're predicting apocalypse and the death of billions by starvation, they're end of the world nuts and don't know how nuclear power works.

      Nuclear reactors can't be rapidly turned off and made non-radioactive --- the full process of decommissioning takes some 50 to 60 years as an industry average, and it takes a LOT of money.

      That's only because of insane greenfield standards. Give them the same standards as shutting off a coal plant and it'd take them about a week.

      There will be no money available under conditions of economic collapse, cooling will be interrupted, and many will go into meltdown.

      Even countries under economic collapse have some money available, and avoiding meltdown is easy. Cooling even our old lousy reactors long enough to prevent a meltdown costs what amounts to a trivial sum. The times vary, but generally it's about 3 weeks from SCRAMing the reactor before it's generating so little heat that passive cooling would be enough to prevent a meltdown. Reactors that have melted down are more complex because they often have a critical mass that is still generating more heat and radioactive components.

      In a condition of economic collapse, you simply mark the area off limits and go about your business. Windmills falling on people will be as large of a problem.

      The whole idea of adding more nuclear power is hazardous and ill-considered, and it's also unnecessary.

      Actually, adding more nuclear power gives us relatively cheap energy that we can use to stave off the burning more coal, natural gas, and otherwise control the effects of global warming.

    • by doom ( 14564 )

      France in the 1970s, in a very short period of time, completely switched it's power generation over to nuclear power. If everyone had done that, we might not have a global warming problem now.

      If you look at the magnitude of what needs to be done to fix climate change, the sheer scale of it looks nearly impossible. This is not a "Manhatten Project", we're looking at something more like mobilizing for WWII.

      We don't actually know what the deadlines are, and what the time table is, but we need to do every

  • Human Fallibility (Score:4, Insightful)

    by InterGuru ( 50986 ) <[moc.urugretni] [ta] [dhj]> on Saturday March 26, 2016 @05:37PM (#51783953) Homepage

    I am against nuclear power for the same reason I am against the death penalty. Both require a level perfection and infallibility that humans are incapable of reaching.

  • by duke_cheetah2003 ( 862933 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @06:11PM (#51784111) Homepage

    I don't really support the current nuclear reactors were using, which were designed what, almost 60, 70 years ago?

    I wholeheartedly support new reactor designs that are much safer and have a nearly zero risk associated with operating them.

  • by tlambert ( 566799 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @06:35PM (#51784243)

    Poll the solar users in Nevada... where the PUC just eliminated net metering, and so you get paid less for the power you generate than the power you consume all the time. There are proposals into the California PUC, which are almost always supported by PG&E, since it would force Smart Meters on places like San Francisco, and PG&E could charge a lot more for night time electricity than day time electricity (when you are using solar).

  • by Applehu Akbar ( 2968043 ) on Saturday March 26, 2016 @08:29PM (#51784729)

    Both are complex technologies which need a detailed regime of control for safe operation. We fly knowing that about once a year we lose a plane load of people, 200-300 at a time, at least once somewhere in the world. Aviation has been around long enough that we know the chance of our next flight being this year's fatal one will be vanishingly small. Nuclear power should be subject to the same calculus, but with one 'crash' of 51 dead in its entire history.

    The difference between the two is pure politics. If you insist on our eliminating carbon, you're going to have to accept changing our baseload over from fossil to nuclear.

  • The only working type of nuclear power we have is fission, and that's a mess. In more ways than one. It's only doable with heavy subvention by taxpayers, completely ignoring the waste problem and not factoring in real insurance policies for disasters. On top of that it turns out reactors aren't running nearly as long and cheap and frictionless as people have dreamed back in the 60ies and 70ies. All that turns fission into an expensive and dangerous 70ies techno-romantic pipe-dream.

    There's a reason Germany is moving away from it - and we've got some of the best reactor-tech on the planet.

    I do support research for nuclear power like jet and iter and perhaps that travelling wave stuff Bill Getes is investing in, but fission as we have it today needs to be decommissioned. Now and globally. The numbers just don't add up. That's a simple hard fact.

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