Friday, April 29, 2005

"Nuclear Power is the answer to global warming" - NOT

"Nuclear Power is the answer to global warming" is one of those common statements that lacks a factual basis.

If all the existing uranium was exhausted, it could meet current global electricity demand for - wait for it - 3 (three) years.

Current NP energy output (438 plants) meets 3% of global energy needs (NP does electricity; most energy is used as heat).

When the CO2 from the energy required to mine, mill and enrich the uranium, and to build and decommission the nuclear power stations is taken into account, nuclear power entails CO2 emissions roughly equivalent to gas powered stations.

This theme is developed on : , with links to an important source document.


individ said...

your concept of mineral resources is quite limited. The amount of reserves available at any time is not a predictor of how much of that commodity can be consumed into the future.

Here, let me give you an illustration the sinks your argument completely. Proven oil reserves at the end of 1993 equaled 1023.6 billion barrels. During the following ten years, 264 billion barrels were produced and consumed, yet proven reserves at the end of 2003 equaled 1147.7 billion barrels. See? The economy is dynamic. There is entrepreneurship, venture capital, human ingenuity, and "supply and demand".


DocRichard said...

Hi individ, many thanks for commenting.
This is my second reply, the first having disappeared into cyberspace by pressing the wrong button, so this will be brief.

You confuse resources, which are the absolute amounts within the Earth, and reserves, which are the amounts of thos resources identified by mining companies as next on the list for exploitation.

It is incontrovertible that reources are finite and will therefore run out. As they run douwn they will be more difficult to extract, and more expensive. Supply will also outstrip demand.

Read here about Peak oil.

Uranium, oil, coal and gas are capital, finite goods. Solar energy is the income of the planet, and is the real fuel of the future.

Thanks again for commenting,