nuclear sustainability essay

Submitted By mckaylamear
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Pages: 6

McKayla Mear
Period 4
Mr. Proodian
Nuclear Sustainability

The United States faces the substantial question of wether nuclear power shall be our source of energy or not. Energy is desired because our world revolves around it. We necessitate it to power our cars, phones, lights, and basically everything. Not to mention that everything we own in our house is made in a factory, and the factories use energy. For fifty years we have depended on nuclear power as our main source of energy. However, this energy source is not safe, it isn't clean, it doesn't make sense with terms of cost, and it is a massive threat of the spread of nuclear weapons. I believe there are many other solutions that can are reliable and safe. America entails a plan for the 21st century power because something needs to take nuclear power plant’s place as an important energy source. America’s implementation of nuclear power routinely releases radioactivity to the environment in the air and in the water, as it also generates high level nuclear waste that no one knows what to do with. In addition, the biggest emission is thermal pollution, which is not dangerous but could have long term effects. A thousand megawatt power plant releases two-thousand megawatts of thermal pollution. This is why most power plants are located by the ocean because they use an awful amount of water to take away the waste heat. For example, the Calvert Cliffs power plant will take in two million gallons of bay water a minute for cooling, and the output will raise bay temperatures by three degrees over a thirty five acre area. Power company scientists say their are no harmful effects, but others complain the heated water will cause premature responding to many fish, destroy microorganisms, and dangerously promote the growth of algae. This is concerning, but something to be more aware of is the radioactive waste. The power plant’s generation process do not release carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide. However, they are emitted during the mining process as well as the transfer from the mines to the nuclear plant. At the plant, even though the waste is stored in the casks, it must be isolated for tens and thousands of years, because it is extremely dangerous. If they were to leak, many would have to leave the area and the radioactivity would be emitted throughout the air and water. Nuclear power plant accidents include the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 and the Fukushima incident in 2011.The Chernobyl incident was the result of a flawed reactor design, which caused thirty deaths within a few weeks due to the radiation poisoning. In 2011 an extensive earthquake took place that caused a tsunami to sweep over the coast of Japan, which effected the nuclear power plants, one in particular, Fukushima. No one had been recorded dead after the incident, but children were checked for radiation and a hundred thousand people had to be evacuated to their homes, and to this day, haven’t returned. These images stick with many people in America, for no one want’s to evacuate their home and town due to radioactivity. People may say that nuclear power is in fact, clean and efficient, but it is not worth risking a disaster. There are many feasible alternatives to make up for the loss of power currently generated by Nuclear Power. One option, geothermal energy, uses heat from the ground to generate useful power, which is mainly used for heating. Another option includes hydrogen power, because it is one-hundred percent clean fuel. As technology improves, this source has great potential to be one of the leading sources of power, greatly affecting the transportation industry. In addition, wind and solar power are practical possibilities to replace nuclear power. Most people have seen windmills, for example, you see them when driving to palm springs. These produce electricity and its use is growing worldwide. However, in today’s world it