After the the disaster at Fukushima Daichi Nuclear Power Station, there are a lot of people
wanting to ban nuclear energy. I can understand this reaction but I think we should keep
nuclear energy. In this century, all the 8 or 9 billion people of this planet are going to
want to consume energy like you and I now do. The world’s energy needs will increase many
times more than now. I recently heard China opens a new power station burning coal every
month. More than nuclear accidents, the large and terrible changes to our climate caused by
burning fossil fuels is the greatest danger to our children and their children.

Now let’s think about the Fukushima accident. Although we don’t know the long-term health
effects of the emergency workers, until now noone has died from radiation effects. Compare
this to the 30,000 or so people who died in the earthquake/tsunami. Also, the accident itself
was caused by a lack of common sense, basic procedure and poor oversight by the government.
TEPCO has a terrible safety record and the government did not supervise it. For example,
building a nuclear power plant on the seaside but not protecting it from tsunami is a lack
of common sense. We would never accept such poor safety design and procedure from airlines
or even car companies. Finally, modern nuclear power stations can recycle fuel. This means
future nuclear energy will not produce waste. We can make endless electricity using the
current fuel.

The world didn’t ban airplanes because of a crash. Instead, we work hard to improve design
and safety procedure. I think the same is necessary for nuclear power. Global warming
will be the greatest disaster in the history of humans. Solar and wind power will not be
enough. We may not like nuclear but we still need it.





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