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We must reject nuclear power and its philosophy of endless consumption

 For humanity, there is no nuclear future, Daily Campus, 8 Dec 15 By Christopher Sacco Edward Abbey, the environmentalist-writer, said in a 1982 PBS interview, that society “seem[s] to really believe that growth is a good in itself and more growth the better, so I doubt if this expansion will be curtailed until something very unpleasant happens.”

consumer-world-nuke

Abbey, who died in 1989, did not witness the full impact of climate change, and so he never understood how prophetically he predicted mankind’s inability to manage the consequences of the Hydrocarbon Age.

While our pale blue dot has, to this point, handled our desire for growth, climate change has presented itself as the tragic result of this insatiable appetite. The need to adopt a carbon-neutral energy source is clear; yet, for this one problem, there exist millions of proposed solutions……..

nuclear power is fully deserving of skepticism—especially in the wake of disasters.

While Thiel opines that the lack of direct casualties absolves nuclear power, such is a painfully ignorant claim. In Japan, there are still, according to the Guardian, 120,000 refugees who cannot return to irradiated homes. Further, the Guardian cited a Fukushima Prefecture survey, in which “67.5 percent of households said they had relatives who were showing signs of physical or psychological distress.” While Thiel focuses on favorable statistics, arguing “nobody in Japan died from radiation,” the reality is far more damning.

Granted, the overwhelming majority of the world’s 438 nuclear reactors have not experienced catastrophe. However, given the rise in storm systems, sea levels, and other unknown consequences of climate change, should we be investing in a power source which, when working perfectly is ideal, but when malfunctioning, threatens the life of those in the vicinity?……

Growth has left our pale blue dot graying and drowning, as glaciers recede and oil wells continue to suck every last drop of black gold from the Earth’s cavernous depths. In the coming years, we must commit ourselves to developing renewable energy, lest we capitulate in the face of enormous odds we face. Moving to nuclear power is not the right direction for humanity. Though Thiel refers to nuclear power as clean, it is hard to call a power source which leaves radioactive waste truly clean.

We should not shift from one proven, dangerous, and volatile energy source for another source with even an infinitesimal potential for disaster. In order to move forward to a better energy future, void of markets for fuel sources (whether fossil fuels or nuclear fuels); void of geopolitical struggle; lacking tangible threats to humanity and ecology; and truly sustainable, we must move past both fossil fuels and nuclear power, and on to the bright future advances in technology will use to supply the world with truly clean energy.http://dailycampus.com/stories/2015/12/8/column-for-humanity-there-is-no-nuclear-future

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December 9, 2015 - Posted by | general

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