Take this from NJ dot com, a website shared by several state papers (the op-ed comes from the Times of Trenton):
There is good reason to give nuclear power a fresh look. It can replace fossil-fuel-burning power plants for generating electricity 24/7, avoiding air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions that could contribute to global warming.
This is nothing new to readers here, but we certainly purr when we hear it in the mainstream press anyway.
Now, this is interesting, an argument that really does tend to dwell among the nuclear friendly only:
There is a humanitarian imperative to using nuclear power. More than 2 billion people still lack access to electricity for basic needs such as clean water, cooking, sanitation and light. Nuclear power has the most potential to close the gap in energy availability between the world’s rich and its disadvantaged people.
Writer James McGovern really picks up points for promulgating what we might call the existential argument for nuclear energy. Electricity can transform a hell scape of underdevelopment into a (relative) garden of progress. We’re well past the point where people must have electricity and at the point where they will have it, one way or another. And McGovern, an energy consultant, sees that clearly.
The bottom line is that nuclear power is not the problem, but part of the solution. Together with further improvements in energy efficiency and renewable energy sources, it can have a major positive impact in the battle against climate change.
Yup. He’s right every step of the way.
South Africa is the only sub-Saharan African country with active nuclear power plants. But research-oriented nuclear reactors have been tested in a few other countries -- including Kenya, Ghana and the Democratic Republic of the Congo -- and it is clear that there is widespread interest in a nuclear-powered future all across the continent. Uganda, Nigeria, Senegal, Niger and others have expressed interest in building up nuclear expertise within their borders.
Exactly what McGovern is talking about. The whole article is worth a read.
See, the thing is, many countries are struggling toward a late industrial revolution – a late information revolution – and the developed world has lately decided that carbon emissions are bad. But how do we keep the developing world from using fossil fuels if that is the easiest way to make electricity? Can we, morally? No, but we can suggest an alternative that keeps both goals in sight.
The inclusion of nuclear power in Australia's electricity generation mix could reduce power prices by 20 per cent and save about $150 billion from now until 2050 in greenhouse gas abatement costs and the health costs of burning fossil fuels, an analysis of future energy options has found.
This will never, ever happen, no matter what – I mean, the Australians accepting nuclear energy (you can throw New Zealand in there, too). It’s like a national blood pact, signed at birth. Love to see it happen, doubt it ever will. But that’s okay – tougher nuts are sweeter to crack.