Fascinating Facts about Nuclear Energy
How much do you really know about nuclear energy and nuclear waste? This is something that not every one of us is familiar with. Many are claiming that their country should consider building a nuclear energy plant because it is cleaner and saver. However, there are many reasons why this isn’t actually the case.
These are some of the most interesting nuclear energy facts. Facts that you might find interesting, but that you need to know if you are ever thinking about starting a career in nuclear or radioactive waste.
20% of nuclear power for the US
Did you know that more than 20% of the US power and electricity comes from nuclear power plants? Your first reaction might be that this isn’t really a high number. That this is still not even half of the US power needs. But, if you are considering the number of people living and working in the US, this is still a lot of power.
Just think about how much nuclear energy is needed. Meaning that when there is nuclear energy, there will be high levels of dangerous nuclear waste, or also known as radioactive waste. And, this waste needs to be disposed of correctly.
Nuclear energy might be clean, the waste is a problem
Most countries are considering nuclear energy for one reason only. Because it is a lot cleaner than other power plants that are polluting the air a lot. However, this shouldn’t be the only reason why countries are considering building nuclear energy plants.
The moment that they are building nuclear energy plants, they need to consider getting disposal sites that are safe and away from cities and humans for disposing of nuclear waste. This can be a problem for many countries, and it will cost a lot of money to dispose of waste. Something that will not make nuclear energy beneficial to smaller countries.
The importance of disposing of nuclear waste correctly
As said before, with nuclear energy plants comes nuclear waste. And, the waste needs to be disposed of correctly. But, the question is why and how do they dispose of it correctly?
The nuclear waste is radioactive. Meaning that it is really dangerous to all living things. This includes plants and animals as well. The containers should be air-tight and should not be able to damage over time. Nuclear waste can be harmful to hundreds of years. It should also be closed in such a way that the containers can never be open again.
Disposal sites of nuclear can’t ever be used again for any other purpose
This is the saddest part of it all. Once you have used a piece of land for the disposal of nuclear waste or radioactive waste, then you can’t use the site for anything else, ever again. This is because the area will be radioactive, no matter how tight the containers have been closed.
It takes hundreds of years before one container isn’t active anymore. Meaning that only after a couple of hundred years after the last nuclear waste has been dumped there, the site will be suitable for usage again. And, only if the site isn’t radioactive anymore.
These are just a couple of facts about nuclear energy and nuclear plants. The most important thing that any country should consider is the nuclear waste that these nuclear energy plants are producing. The waste is harmful and can kill a lot of people. In the early years of developing nuclear power, there were dozens of people dying because of the waste that they didn’t realize was so dangerous. Nuclear power might provide cleaner air, but will be left a country with radioactive waste that is hard to dispose of.
CR Asia is a world-leading industrial maintenance services provider and shutdowns and turnarounds expert, providing an extensive range of cutting-edge services to the oil, gas, chemical, refining and power industries, including catalyst handling services, reactor services, mechanical and plant maintenance services, mechanical engineering services, heat exchanger maintenance and cleaning services and more.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nancy Whitman is a contributor to CR Asia, world leader in specialist industrial maintenance services to the oil, gas, chemical, refining and power industries.