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|>>|| No. 3633
What is your opinion on nuclear energy?
|>>|| No. 3634
Clean, safe, essential. Without it advanced civilisation would grind to a halt over the next 100 years when we run out of oil, similar to how the oil revolution saved us from running out of wood.
The problem is that we as a race are still all so fucking stupid. "Dah comrade, build nuclear plant here, but don't consult international agencies on how to run it safely." "Hai, nuclear plant very good, we build on site of massive tectonic activity because nothing could ever go wrong then."
Don't get me wrong, I have no doubts that we British will fuck up just as badly as Chernobyl and Fukushima at some point, but I think our health and safety procedures are miles ahead of anywhere else in the world. If school children can't have triangle flapjacks for lunch because of the sharp edges, I don't think we're going to give a nuclear reactor much breathing room.
|>>|| No. 3635
What gets me is how goddamn overblown the dangers of radiation are.
|>>|| No. 3636
There is a lot of ignorance surrounding the subject but that doesn't mean the fears are unfounded. I wouldn't like to be irradiated to the level the conscripts on the roof of Chernobyl were irradiated, put it that way.
|>>|| No. 3638
Chernobyl was a flawed design, and the reactors at Fukushima-1, already in line for replacement, went under because the very substantial coastal defences were overwhelmed following the largest earthquake Japan had ever seen, having experienced nothing close to it in 400 years. I'm confused at how either of those would have posed a risk to Germany, who put an end to their nuclear energy programme in the wake of Fukushima. Modern reactor designs are very much safer - the only problem we haven't really solved properly is disposing of the waste.
|>>|| No. 3640
Risky, expensive, not sustainable, not necessary, not even a solution for our energy needs, given all the stations currently being built won't be operational for decades.
And it's just fucking stupid to be building uranium ones when thorium technology is so much better anyway.
|>>|| No. 3641
The fact that the far, far greater dangers associated with other power sources are invariably ignored is incredibly frustrating.
Unfortunately, an incident at a nuclear power plant is a very telegenic catastrophe. East Asian coal miners working in incredibly unsafe and frequently lethal conditions every day, not so much.
|>>|| No. 3642
Since 1986 there has been one major nuclear incident at a power station; but the method of power generation was not at fault. As others have said, it was poor quality coastal defence paired with an absolutely catastrophic earthquake and poor positioning.
People are scared because when it does go tits up, it can go badly badly tits up.
However, I am a strong supporter of nuclear power. It's a hell of a lot cleaner that suphur and CO2 belching coal and gas stations. It's incredbly energy dense which means a small amount can yield a large amount of power. Modern reactors (a good few of which will go online in the UK in the early 2020s) are very safe, too. While it's not the ideal solution, it's something we're going to need to bridge the gap; as we're not going to have nearly enough renewable energy by the time oil/coal/gas starts to get a bit scarce.
The only problem is storage. At Windscale there are buildings B30 and B38 where waste was pretty carelessly dumped and they are now starting to decompose. Fusion somewhat combats this problem -- the actual reaction is not radioactive and the 'waste' can be easily used, but it does irradiate the walls of the reactor.
|>>|| No. 3643
P.S. I am aware that there are far more deaths per joule of energy generated for coal, oil, gas. But in most cases they do not have very long lasting environmental effects (i.e. thousands of years).
This is a pic I took from a few streets away from my grandmother's house -- she lives near Ferrybridge C.
|>>|| No. 3644
>poor quality coastal defence [...] and poor positioning.
Nope, but thanks for trying. The coastal defences around there were bigger and stronger than in neighbouring areas, and if you need an abundant supply of water for cooling you could do worse than take advantage of the massive fucking ocean that sits off your shores.
|>>|| No. 3646
>earhquake prone area
You are aware that this description applies to the whole of Japan, right?
|>>|| No. 3648
Okay, I will rephrase:
Accidents at power stations don't have that sort of lasting effect.
|>>|| No. 3649
Yet the baseline is much less dangerous and damaging than the alternatives. That's the trade-off.
|>>|| No. 3650
When discussing nuclear power, people rarely acknowledge the basic fact of technological process. We talk about Chernobyl or Three Mile Island as examples of the dangers of nuclear power, rather than of the dangers of completely obsolete nuclear technology. Fukuskima Daiichi was built in 1971, based on a design that was already far from state-of-the-art. It's as if when discuss the risks and benefits of cars, we take as our benchmark the Morris Minor.
China and India have detailed, time-specific plans to develop a large fleet of thorium reactors, which are safer, cleaner and have more abundant fuel resources than reactors that use uranium-238 derived fuels. We in the west are lagging woefully behind in the development of this vital technology.
|>>|| No. 3652
>it can go badly badly tits up.
Only Chernobyl is an example of it being particularly awful. No other nuclear accident is quite like it. Nobody died from Fukushima.
|>>|| No. 3653
>If school children can't have triangle flapjacks for lunch because of the sharp edges
Are the children given round flapjack? Surely a square or rectangular flapjack is just two triangles stuck together and poses the same risk?
|>>|| No. 3654
The end result was no flapjacks at all. The big flapjack industry got a right tit on and mobilised the PTA on their behalf and had the ruling overturned. To date nobody has died or been injured from geometrically shaped breakfast desserts but the anti-flapjack lobby is constantly watching and waiting for their chance to strike. Big flapjack hasn't introduced any new safety precautions following the scare beyond some flimsy guidelines about chewing your food, so the chances of a major incident in the new year are very high. A lot of people are blissfully unaware of this buttery and delicious conflict going on right under their noses, but I suspect it will play a big part in next year's general election.
|>>|| No. 3655
Hence why I said it can; rather than it does. The potential to irradiate and kill thousands with horrendous cancers and render hundreds of acres of land uninhabitable for hundreds or thousands of years is just not there in fossil fuel stations.
|>>|| No. 3656
Chernobyl was a farce. They thought "Lets pull the rods and see how much power we can get out of this bad boy. Yes, not ba-Shit, THEY WONT GO BACK IN!"
|>>|| No. 3659
>The potential to irradiate and kill thousands with horrendous cancers and render hundreds of acres of land uninhabitable for hundreds or thousands of years is just not there in fossil fuel stations.
Tens of thousands of people do die due to fossil fuel usage each year: Coal plants in the USA alone cause between 10 and 30 thousands deaths each year due to emissions of sulphur dioxide and other toxic materials.
Chernobyl was basically a worst case scenario for nuclear power. It resulted directly in the deaths of around 50 people, and contributed to the early deaths of, according to most estimates, several thousand people. The equivalent human suffering of the worst case scenario for nuclear power is played out many times over in the fossil fuel industry, every single year.
Also, I shouldn't have to point this out, but far more than "hundreds of acres of land" will be uninhabitable if and when our fossil fuel dependency results in the world's coastlines being under the fucking sea.
|>>|| No. 3660
Instead there's just the potential to clog up thousands of lungs with horrendous particles and kill thousands in mines.
It's a risk benefit analysis, like all things. Just because the risks of nuclear power happen to be sharp and glaringly obvious in a relatively small area doesn't make it worse than something that spreads it's awfulness everywhere.
|>>|| No. 3661
I'm sure a few hundred acres is lost to sea level increases every couple of years.
|>>|| No. 3662
The avoidable deaths discussion is somewhat asinine when you consider 160,000 people die from lung cancer alone in the US and 250,000 are diagnosed with it, overwhelmingly due to smoking. I say that as a smoker.
|>>|| No. 3664
No it's not. I can't think of anything more asinine and irrelevant the discussion than what you just posted.
|>>|| No. 3665
Saying it can is a bit of an empty statement. You can be killed by a dildo to the head, but I don't see anyone here arguing that the dildo be banned for this reason. Remember: crazy person + dildo = risk of death, and there are an awful lot of crazy people about - just look at the circulation of the Mail.
|>>|| No. 3666
It's not relevant to nuclear energy, but it is relevant when discussing raw numbers of cancer cases, as nuclear phobes (for want of a better word) are so prone to doing.
Risk management, at it's simplest level, is the magnitude of the risks versus the likelihood of them occurring. The likelihood of nuclear disaster is extremely low, especially in the context of a first world, developed and democratic nation. The magnitude of potential disaster is great on a local level, but absolutely minute on a global scale. Compare this to convention fossil fuel energy production, where the risks are at least as enormous, unimaginably widespread, but not photogenic and headline-accruing.
|>>|| No. 3671
That Plutonium looks cosy, I wish had some to huddle round on a chilly winters night. And then kill me in my sleep after I drift off in front of it.
|>>|| No. 3672
>What is your opinion on nuclear energy?
Well its just kind of all over the universe isn't it but rarely does anything drastic without significant outside motivation. If Nuclear energy was a person I wouldn't hang out with him.
I can understand the obsession with space travel but why is the internet full of people advocating nuclear power like they have an interest in energy grids?
|>>|| No. 3677
Goddamn Carl Sagan and his selling of nuclear spaceships! The Vulcans will never contact us if we don't achieve at least warp speed.
Anyway the reason I have a sandy vagina on this is because we have so many more pressing issues to address with the energy grid. Just by having the political will alone to create a Europe-wide energy grid would save us enormous sums of power as a sizable share is wasted due to national borders (obviously this is virulently opposed by national energy monopolies as happened in 2009) and upgrading existing lines in Eastern Europe would as a Continent kick down our energy use further still.
Its a bit silly really to be looking into new plants when we already use what we have so wastefully.
>The only problem is storage.
Not the only problem. It suffers from extortionate costs in building and decommissioning with a critical issue being the use of rare Earth materials whose mining is enormously costly for the environment (the same is true of solar) and the materials are er..rare as in we might be facing a collapse in supply in 20-40 years even at present usage.
The deal breaker for me though is two-fold, nuclear plants centralize the energy grid more than it already is which creates problems with supply (if transmission lines go down then you could take out the South of England) and wastes power through transmission loss. The second is that as a species we are just notoriously shitty at maintaining infrastructure which means that 'safe levels' will rarely be maintained due to issues of funding which will be exacerbated by the fact that we always create cost overruns in big infrastructure projects. Look at how shoddy we are at maintaining normal infrastructure.
Its by no means a solution but natural gas seems to be the most logical choice for the next 50 years and something we might want to encourage given we have reserves that we are just starting to look at with fracking. Its not clean but its not particularly dirty either and something we can rely on until renewables becomes more effective.
There. We can sit this one out for a bit with a mix of natural gas and gradually increasing green energy/energy saving methods and if in 40 years China isn't glowing in the dark we can have a think about it.
|>>|| No. 3678
I've been reading Stephen Baxter again and I think we should get to mining Uranus for hydrogen. It would also solve the impending helium crisis.
|>>|| No. 3679
Do they send a lot of miners to Uranus?
Think about it though, if were to start mining Uranus those jokes would never, ever stop. Is it really worth it?
|>>|| No. 3680
You're looking at this from the wrong point of view. Think how many your anus jokes we could make if we started mining Uranus. Isn't it worth it for that alone?
|>>|| No. 3681
Uranus is a terrible place. It's filled with foul smelling noxious gases and fumes, the surface is pockmarked with craters and the caverns below couldn't sustain any sort of life as we know it. A bit like your anus really.
|>>|| No. 3683
I regret not living far in the future where space colonisation and exploration is possible and not being a scientist that could name planets
I would name a planet "Arseland" so I could compete with Uranus and make t-shirts or something.
|>>|| No. 3717
They are all the same anyway. I don't understand how shitty, tiny European countries can wave flags around and feel like they are independent, while the Kurds aren't even allowed to form their own country.
|>>|| No. 3719
If we invent fusion, can we fission uranium then fuse it together, then fission it again?
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