The Benefits and Disadvantages of Nuclear Power

Nuclear energy fills the current energy needs of the world and should be the only type of energy used until a more renewable source is found that is just as efficient, economical and environmentally friendly as nuclear energy. Nuclear energy is in fact very dangerous however, it is not nearly as dangerous as some people fear and the pros far outweigh the cons.

Energy is vital for the advancement of humanity and nuclear energy is the most efficient, plentiful, safe, environmentally friendly and economical form of energy known to man and must be taken advantage of until further developments of renewable energy are made. Nuclear energy is the most efficient form of energy known to man. According to the US Energy Information Administration, the average nuclear reactor can generate 12,400,000,000 kW of energy every hour, that’s 6,200 times the amount of energy generated by the Hoover Dam Power Plant (2,000,000 kWh)! [USE12] If we all switched to nuclear energy, we just might be able to have enough power for ourselves and some left over for third world countries at a fraction of the cost.

Speaking of the cost, did you know that the cost of nuclear energy remained the same since 1999? Even though the cost gas, oil and coal energy has risen and dropped numerous times since 1999, they have never been cheaper than nuclear fuel. This is due to the fact that most of the cost of nuclear energy goes towards production whereas in other energy industries, the fuel is the most expensive part. This means that natural disaster, war, economic depression, international affairs, and availability determine the cost of other energy resources whereas the cost of nuclear energy cannot fluctuate. This also makes nuclear energy the cheapest form of energy.

Nuclear energy is one ninth the costs of oil, one fourth the cost of gas, and two thirds the cost of coal.[Wor11] Interestingly enough, the most appealing part of nuclear power doesn’t quite have anything to do with economics at all. Nuclear energy is the only type of energy that has no negative effects on the environment. That is very important scene the use of other energy sources has created deadly effects on the earth like global warming. The reason that nuclear energy has no negative effects on the environment is because it does not release any carbon dioxide, nitrogen dioxide or sulfur dioxide into the environment.

These noxious gases have been scientifically proven to be the cause of global warming and many other harmful environmental threats. Other forms of energy release these gases into the environment at alarming levels and must be stopped before the earth is uninhabitable. Nuclear energy is thought to be very dangerous due to the countless dangers of radiation as well as various nuclear disasters and the dropping of the atomic bombs in WWII. These fears have given nuclear energy a pretty unfair representation. It is not near as harmful as people fear because nuclear power plants are filled with various security systems and backup systems which make them virtually foolproof.

There are many more accidents in coal mines and power grids than in nuclear power plants. According to Benefits of Nuclear Power, [Ben10] Nuclear energy is the best type of energy known to man and must be used. The benefits far outweigh the disadvantages. Nuclear power is the safest, cheapest and most efficient energy source and has many environmental advantages as well.

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