Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Digging into nuclear power's myths

Helen Caldicott, a veteran anti-nuclear campaigner, has dug deeper into the myths of nuclear power's benefits for a New Matilda article.
Thousands of tons of solid radioactive waste are presently accumulating in the cooling pools beside the operating nuclear plants in the United States and hundreds of others elsewhere throughout the world. This waste contains extremely toxic elements that will inevitably pollute the environment and human food chains, a legacy that will lead to epidemics of cancer, leukemia, and genetic disease in populations living near nuclear power plants or radioactive waste facilities for many generations to come.
It is worth noting that Caldicott has many years experience and expertise in nuclear issues, with extensive links and understanding of the issue in the US and here in Australia.
Wall Street is deeply reluctant to re-involve itself in any nuclear investment, despite the … US$13 billion in [US Congress] subsidies to revive a moribund nuclear power industry.
… the global supplies of usable uranium fuel are finite. If the entire world’s electricity production were replaced today by nuclear energy, there would be less than nine more years of accessible uranium available.
It makes fascinating reading to see an old pro like her make a meal of nuclear myths and the pro-nukes lobby. It is particularly revealing considering the Australian miners' current fantasy to roll-around in silos of uranium money. And the determination of by world leaders at the G8 summit to increase their nuclear power capacities to tackly fossil fuel shortages and rising oil prices.

[Image from a photo by Sprol of the
imploding cooling tower during the decommissioning of the Trojan nuclear power plant in US]

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