nuclear-powerAccording to a study published in the latest issue of the journal Environmental Science and Technology, the use of nuclear power has saved almost 2 million people from developing an air-pollution illness leading to death. In addition, the experts estimated that around 64 billion tons of greenhouse gasses have not been released into the atmosphere.

The authors of the study are convinced that despite the risks associated with safety, nuclear power  has the potential to help mitigating climate change while at the same time protect public health.

The study aimed to establish the benefits of nuclear power. The findings indicated that for the period between 1971 and 2009, nuclear has prevented million cases of deaths and illnesses due to air pollution. In addition, the authors predict that in the next 3 to 5 decades, nuclear has the potential to limit emissions of greenhouse gases with up to 240 billion tons.

The study points out that the use of unconstrained natural gas is much more harmful and it should be the lesser preferred option. The main conclusion of the study is that definite major reductions of greenhouse gases in the next few decades are only possible if the importance of nuclear power is maintained.

1 COMMENT

  1. Sorry, but this study seems laughable to me! Nukes “protect public health”? What a joke! Try telling that to survivors of Chernobyl or Fukushima. Better yet, tell it to all the unborn generations to come who are going to have to cope with cleaning up the massive nuclear waste mess our generation has created. We have bequeathed to them the consequences of short-sighted and incomplete life-cycle engineering designs that brush under the rug our generation’s complete responsibility for creating this not so sleepy nuclear dragon. 
    This study is just as short-sighted as the foolishness of historical and current nuclear design, if it’s public health parameters do not include the 300,000 year or so half-life of nuclear waste. How in the world can we assume that our society will remain intact to guard and maintain nuclear storage facilities for even 300 years? The false and incomplete premise of nuclear power is that we can control the physical plant containing the waste, which is already demonstrably untrue.
    The study presents a false choice between carbon pollution, which of course must be eliminated, and nukes, which should also be eliminated. But just because nukes reduce carbon use and pollution doesn’t mean nukes are at all a viable alternative. The real choice should be between alternative energies with no catastrophic consequences upon system failure. Neither nukes nor oil are viable when evaluated at a realistic system level because when the analytic loop is closed, both approaches leak poison. The design of acceptable energy alternatives should follow the Hippocratic oath on a planetary spatial scale and a geologic time scale: First do no harm, at any phase of the system life-cycle.

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