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Pros And Cons Of Nuclear Energy

626 words - 3 pages

Pros and Cons of Nuclear Energy

Nuclear power was the world’s fastest growing form of energy in the 1990’s. However, presently it is the second slowest growing worldwide. Considering that nuclear power accounts for eleven percent of the world’s energy supply, one must ask what happened [Nuclear Power]. Why is it that the growth of nuclear power has almost completely stalled? The simple answer is that after meltdowns such as Three Mile Island and Chernobyl, many people are afraid of nuclear power plants, which causes great opposition to the expansion of the industry. Unfortunately, most people are not well informed about nuclear energy; many do not take the time to view its positives and negatives.

Contrary to popular belief, there are advantages to nuclear energy as opposed to power by fossil fuels. The largest misunderstanding about nuclear power is that it is extremely dangerous. However, no American has ever died or been severely injured due to nuclear power plants, and worldwide the numbers are also very small. In contrast, on average 10,000 to 50,000 Americans die per year from respiratory problems due to working with coal, and about 300 Americans die per year due to mining and transportation accidents of fossil fuels- and that is only in America [Jiskha]! In addition, nuclear power plants in the United States are strictly regulated by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and all power plant employees are highly trained. Between the NRC and training programs, American nuclear power plants are the safest in the world [Plasma-Material]. However, there is no denying that a nuclear meltdown is very dangerous, and the threat of a melt down will always be a large problem with nuclear energy.

Pollution is another topic with both pros and cons. Fossil fuels release harmful pollutants into...

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