This is an excellent letter from an NA-YGN spokesman.
Regards, Jim Muckerheide
August 15, 2005
Nuclear energy 'best choice' by far
columnist Ruth Pullen seems to believe that unless everything can stand on its
own in a competitive market, then it should fail ("Myths indicate nuclear power
not best choice," Aug. 8). If we applied this same litmus test to things
like telecommunications, interstate construction and national defense, I
shudder to think what the implications would be.
No doubt, if these standards were applied to "renewable sources" like
wind, solar, and biomass, they would certainly fail. Even with massive
government subsidies to the tune of $18 per megawatt hour, these renewable
sources cannot compete.
At present, 80 percent of the nation's electricity comes from either fossil
fuels or nuclear energy. How can we meet the nation's energy needs while
reducing our dependence on fossil fuels without nuclear energy?
year, the burning of fossil fuels pours more and more pollution into the atmosphere
resulting in thousands of deaths from mining accidents and respiratory
distress. According to many scientists this also brings us much closer to the
point of no return in global warming.
But, the good news is that we do not have to choose between plentiful,
inexpensive energy and global warming. The technology to produce energy in a
clean and efficient manner — nuclear energy — has been used and
steadily improved over the last 50 years.
nuclear industry is the only form of electrical generation required to contain
its waste. Since a small amount of uranium about the size of the tip of your
little finger has the energy equivalent of about 2,000 pounds of coal, the
amount of waste it produces is extremely small, and since it remains solid, it is
Last year, in Mississippi
alone, nuclear energy avoided the emission of 47,800 tons of sulfur dioxide,
16,300 tons of nitrogen oxide, and 9.4 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.
What's more amazing is that used nuclear fuel should not be called
"waste," since approximately 95 percent of the energy is still
contained in it. It should be reprocessed and recycled as fuel for future
Pullen is right: It's only "myths" that indicate nuclear power is not
the best choice. However, the facts indicate that nuclear power is a far better
choice than the alternatives.
Perhaps this is why so many environmentalists including Dr. James Lovelock and
Greenpeace founder Patrick Moore have publicly voiced their support for nuclear
Public information officer
North American Young Generation in Nuclear