Nuclear Power Persuasive Essay | Teen Ink

Nuclear Power Persuasive Essay

May 30, 2010
By JacksonDReynolds PLATINUM, Chatsworth, Georgia
JacksonDReynolds PLATINUM, Chatsworth, Georgia
24 articles 2 photos 48 comments

Let’s imagine that we are on a freeway. Just a few miles over the horizon lies the ultimate exhaustion of our planet’s fossil fuel supply. However, before we reach that otherwise inevitable destination, there are several exits at which we can turn off to evade the unquestionably chaotic and potentially economically ruinous position of losing the energy source upon which we primarily rely. The names of many of these turn-offs are familiar: solar, nuclear, wind, hydroelectric – these words dominate the landscape of the “feel-good environmentalism” that has invaded the mainstream media. While all of these are already implemented to different extents, at the level of our current technology, only nuclear power provides a solid and practical solution to the looming energy crisis. Despite resistance fed predominantly by ignorant scare tactics, nuclear power is a necessary step toward the ultimate goals of energy dependence in this nation, providing a solution to the energy crisis in light of waning fossil fuel reserves, and upholding environmental responsibility.
While there are numerous alternative energy sources available to us; as has been aforesaid, only nuclear is presently practical on a large scale. Hydroelectric power can only provide electricity to areas near rivers or large bodies of water with strong currents; and while it may seem like a great option superficially, geothermal energy is very costly to harness and causes egregious damage to surrounding river ecosystems. Nuclear power plants, in spite of high start-up costs, can produce massive amounts of energy very cheaply and fairly safely. And unlike its more restrictive cousins, it can provide a source of energy in any inhabited area on earth where sufficient land is available.
It is impossible to highlight the positive aspects of nuclear energy without the question of nuclear waste arising to rain on the parade. Notwithstanding, it is a valid point, and one to be duly considered before we, as scientists, embark on a journey down any paths of radical action. The conundrum of what we must do with the hazardous radioactive by-products of nuclear power generation is, without a doubt, the sole ugly pimple on the otherwise blemishless face of clean nuclear energy. Maintaining environmental responsibility is of great importance, but so is finding alternative energy sources. In my opinion, the best path of action is not to see nuclear power as the ultimate answer, but rather to utilize it to its full potential as soon as is possible, thereby reducing the need for fossil fuels and creating an extended window of time in which other, cleaner technologies such as solar, antimatter, and wind can be tweaked and enhanced to more efficient levels. This way, it will take much longer to actually run out of fossil fuels, and by the time such does occur, other cleaner technologies will be better suited to take over as leading energy sources for the citizens of planet earth.
Now, and for as long as nuclear power plants continue to operate, there will be public wariness and fear-mongering from special-interest groups – such is unavoidable. Just as the Hindenburg disaster ended the promising age of dirigible flight as a means of mass public transportation, so the Three Mile Island incident did for public acceptance of nuclear power as a means for large-scale power production. It seems that (as per usual) the mainstream media has endorsed the false opinions of many “professionals” who have apparently not made erudition the manner through which they acquire their information. This has caused the public, always in search of a quick path to elucidation, to put an unrealistic amount of faith in feeble methods of energy creation such as the abovementioned solar and wind technologies.
Basically, no, nuclear is not the ultimate solution to the energy crisis, but it, without a doubt, needs to be aggressively implemented in the very near future in order to buy extra time in which better solutions can be formulated. If we choose to go this route, there is little chance that we would reap negative consequences in the long run. It’s now or never.

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