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Killing Nuclear will Kill your Green Economy

Killing Nuclear will Kill your Green Economy

  • Without preparation and diversification, the world is heading toward a solar panel waste crisis.

Authored by Serban V.C. Enache via Hereticus Economicus:

The German government vowed to shut down nuclear energy by 2022. Germany is getting half of its energy needs from alternative sources: atomic 13 percent, solar 9 percent, wind 25 percent, and hydro power 5 percent. While carbon generator sources are: biomass 8 percent, gas 9 percent, hard coal 10 percent, brown coal 20 percent. Critics said and are saying that transitioning to alternate sources while, at the same time, phasing out atomic energy is too ambitious. I don’t approve of this euphemistic term “ambitious,” I think the word deranged is more fitting.

Eight years ago, the German chancellor Angela Merkel, in wake of the Fukushima situation, announced that she would phase out nuclear energy by 2022. Wind and solar power was promised to replace that fall in output, but here’s a word the pushers of radiophobia never mention – STORAGE. If you phase out nuclear, then what’s going to happen when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow? That loss has to be replaced in the grid and the German Government, allegedly against fossil fuels and pro-green, plugged the gap with [dirty] coal, burning more and more of it. Even with 100 percent green energy generation, a country is still left seriously vulnerable to nature’s whim if it didn’t invest or invest sufficiently in diversification and storage capacity, to get batteries to feed the grid while the wind and the clouds aren’t favorable.

How can prudent and rational voices be heard when faced with so much ‘green’ propaganda? The most recent example being the crud from HBO on Chernobyl, the purpose of which is to conveniently promote radiophobia, given the historical moment facing the world today on this question. This weekend, hundreds of protesters in North Rhine Westphalia broke through a police line to demonstrate against the mining of brown coal. Note that nobody has a plan for people working in the coal sector. Nobody is interested in their livelihood or their communities. Nobody is giving them a better deal to replace their current profession.

The decision to phase out atomic power has NOTHING to do with science, but EVERYTHING to do with politics. The most effective carbon-free power source is atomic power – so why aren’t Western Governments and Western audiences in favor of nuclear energy? The technology employed by Chernobyl isn’t representative of modern reactors and modern safety regulations. German nuclear reactors should NOT be shut down, for they are the only units capable of meeting the baseload, while providing cheap energy and this energy is carbon-free. ‘Green’ opponents to atomic power say it’s worth it for the public to shoulder higher electricity bills in the short run, while the transition phase is carried out, and they claim this [higher] price will remain affordable. More so, the complete shutdown of atomic reactors in Germany is set to happen, even if renewables aren’t at a stage of covering the deficit in the grid. That shows how foolish they are, or perhaps, the word corrupt is more fitting, if we’re talking about the big interests behind these Government decisions. Ultimately, the shutting down of atomic plants in Germany means killing research and development in the nuclear sector, and making the country import more energy than before – ironically, importing energy from nuclear sources as well.

Everybody’s familiar with the bad rep of atomic energy. But here’s what not many people know about the ‘green’ propaganda’s favorite alternative source. Photo voltaic panels create 300 times more toxic waste per unit of energy than do nuclear power plants; and the average lifespan of these panels is 25 years.

In 2016, solar provided 1.3 percent of the world’s electricity, with 301 GW installed. Nuclear reactors provided 10 percent of the world’s electricity in the same year. Japan is trying to chip away at a mountain of spent PV panels. Toshiba Environmental Solutions estimates it would take around 19 years to finish recycling all of the solar waste Japan produced by 2020. By 2034, the annual waste production will be 70 to 80 times larger than the waste production registered in 2020. We’re talking about one of the most advanced and orderly countries on earth, Japan.

But in countries like China, India, and Ghana, communities living near electronic waste dumps often burn the waste in order to salvage the copper wires for resale. Burning off the plastic releases fumes that are carcinogenic and teratogenic when inhaled. When will the mainstream entertainment sector make phobia-triggering films for PV cells? Possibly never. But wait, California doesn’t have a proper and safe plan to dispose of the solar waste either, and that state is a world leader in PV panels. Having manufacturers collect and dispose of PV panels at the end of their lives, as is the case in Europe, is doubtless a policy that every responsible country should take. But this provision doesn’t mean the phenomenon is under control. Far from it.

Let’s return to Japan, that highly advanced and ordered country. Its Environmental Department warns that between 2034 and 2040 the amount of [national] solar waste will range between 700 and 800 thousand tons every year. The projected peak of 810 tons [in a year] is equivalent to 40.5 million panels. To dispose that amount in a year would require a capacity of 110 thousand panels per day. My purpose here isn’t to bash or demonize PV panels, but to warn people of the heavy environmental cost, capital cost, and health cost associated with them.

The following graph shows us one net winner in terms of throughput [tonnes of materials per Twh] and this winner should get priority funding from Governments, but in reality, the opposite is the case – at least for most countries in the West.

See Also

Without preparation and diversification, the world is heading toward a solar panel waste crisis. With atomic power being strangled and or shut down, the world will remain heavily reliant on dirty and increasingly scarce coal, and billions of people will be affected. Who will end up suffering? It’s not going to be the rich.

And yet these ridiculous protest groups who call for frugality as a means to “mitigate” climate change continue to get supporters and headlines. It’s an outright lie, for even if we were to shut down all industries and transportation, the effects of climate change would still be felt – and their frugality ‘solution’ is nothing short but a massage for a wooden leg [Romanian expression]. Besides, how legit are these supporters of frugality? Don’t they use smart phones and tablets to communicate and organize themselves? Aren’t they hooked up to the internet? To social media? Do they not own computers? Do they not consume industry-created substances and products? Please… If you’re serious about bringing down CO2 emissions, you’ll be in favor of nuclear power, especially 3rd generation and 4th generation [theoretical & experimental] reactors. If not, you’re not serious about it; you’re just another poser.

 

 

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Walter ClemsyBill RogersVera GottliebHerbert DorseyHideo Watanabe Recent comment authors
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Olivia Kroth
Guest

An interesting text. So Russia and Germany are going in opposite directions: While Russia is building more and more atomic power stations at home and abroad, Germany wants to shut its own down by 2022. Which development is better? The future will show.

Pierre Vaillant
Guest
Pierre Vaillant

Indeed it will.

Billy Atom Boy
Guest
Billy Atom Boy

So far they failed, because coal power was revived. Sometimes Gov intervention in the market has good outcomes, sometimes it has bad outcomes. In the case of Merkel, the intervention’s premise was totally political and unscientific.

FugMcKeown
Guest

‘totally political and unscientific.’

We have studied the science of the fallout and contamination from the Chernobyl and Fukushima disasters. If the same type of meltdown occurs in Germany it could easily bankrupt the whole state, depending the location of the plant. This is not ‘unscientific’. It has happened and we studied the consequences. It will happen again.

toiletsauce
Guest
toiletsauce

at some point, germany and russia will lay an undersea cable so that russia can provide germany with electricity from nuclear power, and german politicians can claim “we have no nuclear power plants in germany”

FugMcKeown
Guest

This article is CRASS. Nuclear Energy is and has always been a disaster. The Next Chernobyl and Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster is just around the corner. It will happen. The author must think we have found new safer ways to split the atom! We have no idea what to do with the Nuclear Waste we have at the moment, without adding anymore. Salt Mines? How do we prevent future generations from not opening the containers with nuclear waste in the salt mines? The Author of this article is an imbecile. This is a simple pro propaganda piece for for the… Read more »

Tom
Guest
Tom

So, let’s have your ideas for solving this problem
Calling the author crass names is not debating. At least he’s put out his ideas. Let’s have your solutions.

FugMcKeown
Guest

We can easily reach the worlds energy needs with renewable energy. My own country of Ireland could export energy if we had built the Wind turbine farms and exploited our natural resource of wind power. Massive Solar farms around the Sahara desert, combined with wind Turbines in areas suitable and in conjunction with wave farms is more than enough to feed the Worlds energy needs.

FugMcKeown
Guest

‘The technology employed by Chernobyl isn’t representative of modern reactors and modern safety regulations’ The Author is a Dangerous Imbecile. The technology involved in fission nuclear power plants has never changed. It cant, it is fundamental physics. Split the atom by lowering fuel rods into water and waiting for atoms to collide with each other and heat the water from the micro explosions and turn it into steam. This type of greedy uneducated thinking is what will lead to the next nuclear reactor core meltdown and leave at least 10,000 square kilometers of the country it happens in ruined. The… Read more »

Billy Atom Boy
Guest
Billy Atom Boy

Utter rubbish. The Soviet Union’s political hierarchy had long been infiltrated by London School of Economics ideology. The Soviets committed slow harakiri when they adopted Liberman’s policies over Automatization.
Nuclear fission tech is much safer today than it was 40 years ago.
A meltdown would bankrupt Germany? You’re totally parallel with politics AND economics.

FugMcKeown
Guest

Why not try and educate yourself Atom Boy and stop with the conspiracy theory nonsense. You will be writing about Flat Earth Theory next. So a nuclear accident in Germany like Chernobyl would not bankrupt Germany! Why? Is it because they have Free Democratic Western Nuclear Reactors that can not blow up and meltdown! I hate to break it to you but the reactors are fundamentally the same. An accident can happen in any nuclear reactor, and if it happens around a Large German manufacturing Region it could bankrupt the Country. Why not check out the monumental scale Mikhail Gorbachev… Read more »

Ellie Donald
Guest
Ellie Donald

Radiophobia = fear of ionizing radiation. The term is also used to describe the opposition to the use of nuclear technology (i.e. nuclear power) arising from concerns disproportionately greater than actual risks would merit.

FugMcKeown
Guest

‘Nuclear fission tech is much safer today than it was 40 years ago.’

Oh Yeah! and so is Driving and Flying. They split the atom the same way they did 40 years ago. It will be people like you that will be telling us that the 5th Generation Nuclear Reactors are much safer than the Third and Fourth generation one after they meltdown also.

M4A MMT
Guest
M4A MMT

I don’t know what your’re smoking, but trying to transition [the world] to green without nuclear is guaranteed disaster. You seem to not have any grasp of what bankruptcy is – bankruptcy is when an entity’s equity goes negative. Germany wouldn’t be in such a position if one of its reactors had a meltdown. Just like Japan didn’t go bankrupt with the Fukushima event, and back then Japan’s government debt to GDP ratio was around 220%.
Spare us your sermons and ad hominems.

Billy Atom Boy
Guest
Billy Atom Boy

Tell that to the French.
About 98% of spent nuclear fuel can be recycled. Ever heard of molten salt thorium reactors?
To say that nuclear technology stood by and made no progress as time went on is pure propaganda.

FugMcKeown
Guest

‘Ever heard of molten salt thorium reactors?’
Yes. unfortunately i did. I am sure you seen this fiction on YouTube where you get your full education from.

Billy Atom Boy
Guest
Billy Atom Boy

So you wouldn’t implement the tech? Oh, I see. If people don’t agree with you, then that means they are imbeciles.
If nuclear is so evil as you say, why isn’t there an overwhelming consensus among scientists and engineers to abolish civilian atomic power?

Some guy from Newtown
Guest
Some guy from Newtown

Nuclear most expensive energy?
LoL. If not for the constant demonization of nuclear and all the subsidies the other sources get [fossil fuel and alternatives alike] , Nuclear is the most cost/effective and secure choice on the market. And it would even be cheaper if countries invested in breeder reactors. Uranium mining produces less carbon than coal mining. Isn’t it ironic that the greens who promote CO2-induced doomsday scenario favor coal mining over atomic power? The world is upside down, and [neo]malthusianism is well and alive.

FugMcKeown
Guest

Maybe you can tell me in your infinite wisdom ‘Some guy from Newtown’ what we are going to do with the Millions of tons of Nuclear waste all around the world. And don’t tell me we can put it into space when we have the technology. The Nuclear Industry has never been profitable and when it goes wrong, you loose thousands of square kilometres of your country.
So i would love to hear what we will do with the Nuclear Waste. Leave it as a Gift to our Grand Children?

Stacey Roberts
Guest
Stacey Roberts

Nuclear waste is recyclable. Once reactor fuel (uranium or thorium) is used in a reactor, it can be treated and put into another reactor as fuel. In fact, typical reactors only extract a few percent of the energy in their fuel. The US and India have the world’s highest reserves [barely tapped] of thorium. The world has enough fissionable material that it can’t really run out of it any time soon. Where there’s a will, there’s a way. You invoke grandchildren… consider the other side of the coin… what will they inherit if the world shuts off nuclear and then… Read more »

Pierre Vaillant
Guest
Pierre Vaillant

Typical pseudo-environmentalist misinformation.
Chernobyl had a mix of 1st and 2nd generation reactors [50/50].
Fukushima was 2nd generation.
The author clearly states his support for 3rd and 4th gen technology, R&D.

Lyle Courtsal
Guest
Lyle Courtsal

You know, the costs of nuclear accidents, decommissioning, and long term storage of high level waste is not factored into the pricing of nuclear power. Who gets to pay those massive costs? The US taxpayer; funny how that is. And not one private insurer is covering nuclear power plants; why is that? We in the US are at a great point where the plants are falling apart, licensed beyond their safe operating lifespan. This is a perfect time to leave nuclear tech behind; that would even downsize the arsenal as well.

M4A MMT
Guest
M4A MMT

Taxes for revenue are obsolete.
Gov debt = domestic private sector + foreign sector financial savings.
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/taxes-for-revenue-are-obs_b_542134
Yes, all of these things carry negative externalities. So why kill something, instead of taxing those unfactored costs of production [pigovian tax]? Why is reviving coal mining better than allowing present reactors to fulfill their lifespan while we transition? You think the world can transition successfully without nuclear? Keep dreaming.

Lyle Courtsal
Guest
Lyle Courtsal

Also with regards to the green allegations re nuclear power; power plants cooling water can raise the temperatures of even immense rivers like the Mississippi a couple of degrees, a huge amount of direct warming. We were trying to slow global warming right?

Lyle Courtsal
Guest
Lyle Courtsal

nuclear power plants give off huge amounts of heat in the cooling water and the towers, raising the temperatures of even immense rivers like the Mississippi a couple of degrees. Not a real good solution for global warming, huh.

DC Long
Guest
DC Long

NUCLEAR decommissioning of power reactors will not happen. GOODBYE carbon basted units The political apes will rad the planet to run their hot tubs. ‘Now, when we go back to using nuclear power, we are creating something which nature tried to destroy to make life possible’
https://www.nytimes.com/1982/01/30/us/excerpts-from-farewell-testimony-by-rickover-to-congress.html

DC Long
Guest
DC Long

Modern Safety Systems? 5 decades of rods dumped in spent fuel pools designed for a single decade? Facilities you can not unplug? Fukushima was a Level 7 Event due to POWER FAILURE. Fuk’s reactors and pools rode both the earthquake and `tsunami intact. I had a hand in building these gadgets, and it is crystal clear we can not trust TPTB to isolate this mass of life-wrecking star matter from the biosphere. This be A political wreck and a manageable technical challenge. So the future of life on mother earth depends on responsible parties.

Lyle Courtsal
Guest
Lyle Courtsal

When all the long term systems costs of nuclear, coal, oil, gas, etc are factored in, you realize that you are way behind even where you were before. This is what is also happening with the national parks resource extraction debate; no net gain for the public, rather a huge death dealing loss once again. So here are some clean energy generating tech that are presently viable; Wind, Solar, Solar Thermal (CRescent Dunes0, Tidal, Geothermal, small hydro, and conservation/insulation. When combined, you have an adequate clean energy future without the death dealing tech of nuclear power.

Walter Clemsy
Guest
Walter Clemsy

Spare me the propaganda. All the nuclear accidents don’t rise to the level of hundreds of disasters from chemical explosions, dam failures, coal-mining disasters, or even the thousands of Americans who die every year from food-poisoning.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2019/06/27/how-hbo-got-it-wrong-on-chernobyl/#3e29d7919ce8

Hideo Watanabe
Guest
Hideo Watanabe

Interesting story. I have an impression that the author knows the following facts; 1) Fukushima DNPP nuclear core melt down of Unit 1 to 3 went along almost exactly as NRC’s SOARCA(State-of-the-Art Reactor Consequence Analyses) predicted. That is, when the total power loss happens, the reactor core damage will start in one hour and the containment vessel is crippled in eight hours. 2) Although the highest dose level of Fukushima disaster was trivialized as low as 11.9 mSv/h measured at the west entrance at 9:00 a.m. of March 15 2011, IAEA Technical Report published on line August 2015 states that… Read more »

Walter Clemsy
Guest
Walter Clemsy

All the nuclear accidents don’t rise to the level of hundreds of disasters from chemical explosions, dam failures, coal-mining disasters, or even the thousands of Americans who die every year from food-poisoning. And regarding the Chernobyl boogieman… According to the IAEA, the United Nations Coordinator of Humanitarian Affairs, the United Nations Development Program, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the United Nations Environment Program, the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation, the World Health Organization, and the World Bank, and the governments of Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine, the actual fatalities were: https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2019/06/27/how-hbo-got-it-wrong-on-chernobyl/#3e29d7919ce8 – 2 immediate,… Read more »

Herbert Dorsey
Guest
Herbert Dorsey

Nuclear power works by the disintegration of atoms which creates harmful radioactive byproducts that can last for centuries while giving off life threatening Alpha, Beta and Gamma radiation. The solution to disposing of these harmful byproducts of nuclear power has still not been satisfactorily solved after many decades of working on the problem. Even now the Fukashima disaster is killing life in the Pacific ocean from radioactive contamination that cannot be contained. To continue the nuclear power madness is the highest level of stupidity by people blinded by human greed. There are now technologies that can tap the power within… Read more »

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

All those “experts” out there and yet not a single one has the solution as to what to do with nuclear waste which remains radio-active for hundreds of years.

Walter Clemsy
Guest
Walter Clemsy

Up to 97 percent of spent nuclear fuel can be recycled into new fuel.
There are solutions, it’s just that politicians don;t want to pursue them.

Bill Rogers
Guest
Bill Rogers

According to the IAEA, the United Nations Coordinator of Humanitarian Affairs, the United Nations Development Program, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the United Nations Environment Program, the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation, the World Health Organization, and the World Bank, and the governments of Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine, the actual fatalities were: – 2 immediate, non-radiation deaths – 29 early fatalities from radiation (ARS) within 4 months from radiation, burns and smoke inhalation, – 19 late adult fatalities presumably from radiation over the next 20 years, although this number is within the normal… Read more »

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