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Nuclear waste – a danger for countless generations to come

The World’s Growing Nuclear Waste Dilemma, Oil Price, By Haley Zaremba – Oct 15, 2020,

”……….Just last month, the World Nuclear Industry Status Report showed the shocking statistic that nuclear is now the most expensive form of power generation in the world, with the sole exception of gas peaking plants.

And then there’s the issue of nuclear waste, and it’s not a minor one. Around the world, radioactive waste is piling up, and managing it is a huge expense, not to mention a public health risk of massive proportions if not handled appropriately. Spent nuclear fuel is so hazardous because the waste, in particular uranium and plutonium, is highly radioactive with a half-life that will outlast all of us.

Recently, different nuclear-powered countries around the world have been pursuing “final disposal sites” for their nuclear waste. This process consists of converting this radioactive waste into a kind of glass via a process known as vitrification. This glass will then be stored inside of stainless steel vessels that will be kept in a pool to maintain a cool temperature until they are finally transferred to their final resting place deep underground, where they will remain undisturbed until their amount of radioactivity has decreased to a level that they can be handled safely–a period of time anywhere from 1,000 to 100,000 years. …….

controversy in Japan is directly related to that nation’s particular history to be sure, but it is part of a global problem. Nuclear waste is not just a hazard for ourselves, but for countless generations to come, and we cannot afford to be cavalier with its management. Finding a place for the spent nuclear fuel that has already been created by generations past and that yet to be produced cannot be rushed or thrust upon those who do not want it but have no power to refuse it. Final disposal sites are certainly a step forward but Japan shows us that they’re also, ultimately, a flawed solution.

October 17, 2020 - Posted by | general

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