View Poll Results: Are You Interested In More Nuclear Power?

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  • Hell no! Remember Chernobyl?

    21 16.67%
  • Don't know.

    3 2.38%
  • Maybe. What do the scientists say?

    29 23.02%
  • Absolutely! Every other idea is even worse.

    79 62.70%
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Thread: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

  1. #321
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by FreedomFromAll View Post
    Nuclear power though is unique in that the start up investment is very high. Hydroelectric though also has a high start up price. But I dont really count dams since it would be very hard to convince people that more dams on that favorite piece of river is something they have to accept.

    Really what people want is for electricity to be cheaper and power plants should be fewer in number and clean. It is obviously going to be tough to fill that bill. One of the problems is that power generation has become politicalized but not in a good way. See we have the Left that says that power generation should be green at any cost. They lack any real detail on how thats would work. Most will point to wind and solar but cant really explain how that would replace fossil fuel generators. Then theres the Right that claim that nuclear is the magic bullet and that all alternative power generation is pointless. Funding and location are valid questions that should be asked of both sides. Nuclear safety is a valid concern because despite every reassurance **** happens. We have 23 reactors like what is in Fukushima. Most of the time the danger of anything happening bad at nuclear power plants is very slim, and the statistics show it. Its kind of like dam failure is rare but not out of possibility even though not likely. There are safety rules though for a reason, because despite the good records with both dams and reactors they still pose large dangers to human life and property. Of course alarmists go way overboard and even lie about such dangers. But safety is always apart of decision making especially when one is talking about the safety of many people. ANd right now if anyone raises any concerns about the safety of nuclear power Republicans are quick to dismiss it because of the alarmists.

    From a logical assessment Nuclear power has pros and cons. A big con is the fact that no one can get around, and that is more reactors means more nuclear waste will need to be stored. There isnt right now a good solution for storing nuclear waste. All nuclear waste requires capital to be spent on storing nuclear waste for generations. 100-200 years down the road the problem of storing nuclear waste will still exist. So we shouldnt just run into building bunches of new nuclear reactors without debating the science behind the solutions available for power generation. Yes Nuclear energy power generation exists right now while other ideas are just ideas. But either way building enough nuclear power plants to take over fossil fuel power generation will be astronomically expensive and would not happen over night. Is that the best solution to this nations power needs?

    I dont think its wise to put all of our eggs in one basket. Nuclear power generation isnt the magic bullet. At best it is a half ass temporary solution. We need to find an actual solution for the immediate future. Something that involves a hell of a lot less capital to do.
    I agree relying on only 1 source of power, unless we find one that has no down sides (beyond unlikely) is just plain stupid. I dont see any short/medium term replacement for nuclear though, unless you accept more oil/coal/gas plants, something that has as much politics running againt them as nuclear. The other problem is what if we dont find anythign else? What if these new technologies dont pan out? Stickign our heads in the sand and saying no no it'ss all work out with future tech is insane.
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  2. #322
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by DVSentinel View Post
    Very geographically dependent. They basically use the heat from magma (lava). They have to be built where the magma is close enough to the surface to use. I guess you really could build them just about anywhere, if you were willing to bury them deep enough to get close to magma.
    I was under that impression but as I wasnt sure I didnt think I should just act like I knew it was, after all when you assume you make an ass of you U and me
    Thanx for the info
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  3. #323
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Quag View Post
    I agree relying on only 1 source of power, unless we find one that has no down sides (beyond unlikely) is just plain stupid. I dont see any short/medium term replacement for nuclear though, unless you accept more oil/coal/gas plants, something that has as much politics running againt them as nuclear. The other problem is what if we dont find anythign else? What if these new technologies dont pan out? Stickign our heads in the sand and saying no no it'ss all work out with future tech is insane.
    There are better ways of delivering electricity than from massive centralized power plants. Long power lines are highly inefficient. I forget what the equation is but there is loss attributed to the length of the power lines. Knowing this fact and the fact that this nations power grid is not up to par, it shouldnt be too much of a stretch to realize that a fundamental change in how we build power grids is needed. One of the danger right now is that the right damage in the right stops could wipe out electricity to a huge region of the US. And it might be weeks or even months before it could be all fixed. Everyone knows that power grids suck in concept and design. Every electrician knows that there should be stops that would allow the electricity to stay on and the problem should have been local rather than regional like some of the worst blackouts have been. In making these improvements to the nations power grid we could design in some what people call alternative power generation. We need to remove some of the road blocks that dont allow us to progress forward.

    We need a fast and responsive power grid scheme, one that allows fast recovery to natures fury. A system that can promote private power stations on any level. It just be easy for anyone to hook a generator of some type to their local power grid and make a profit.

    ANd I agree that no one should give faith in something that may or may not exist. Fusion power is a good example of that mindset. How many times have we heard 'If only we had fusion power' I know that I have been hearing that line all of my life so far. So yes we need a plan that looks at reality first then as technology advances which it will that plan should be flexible enough to change with the times. One of my main objections to the assertion that nuclear power is the solution is that more than likely if we commit to nuclear power to replace coal etc that we will probably slowdown other more promising technology because of that commitment. Like I said starting up new nuclear plants is not cheap. But then at this stage of the game one accident would change the game. Or it could go the other way if we started having bad blackouts people would welcome new nuclear plants no problem. At any rate there are new nuclear plants in the works so really all of this is kind of a mute point. I guess it is good that this conversation is at least going around the country. Hopefully there will be some real interest and it wont just fade.

  4. #324
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by FreedomFromAll View Post
    There are better ways of delivering electricity than from massive centralized power plants. Long power lines are highly inefficient. I forget what the equation is but there is loss attributed to the length of the power lines. Knowing this fact and the fact that this nations power grid is not up to par, it shouldnt be too much of a stretch to realize that a fundamental change in how we build power grids is needed. One of the danger right now is that the right damage in the right stops could wipe out electricity to a huge region of the US. And it might be weeks or even months before it could be all fixed. Everyone knows that power grids suck in concept and design. Every electrician knows that there should be stops that would allow the electricity to stay on and the problem should have been local rather than regional like some of the worst blackouts have been. In making these improvements to the nations power grid we could design in some what people call alternative power generation. We need to remove some of the road blocks that dont allow us to progress forward.

    We need a fast and responsive power grid scheme, one that allows fast recovery to natures fury. A system that can promote private power stations on any level. It just be easy for anyone to hook a generator of some type to their local power grid and make a profit.

    ANd I agree that no one should give faith in something that may or may not exist. Fusion power is a good example of that mindset. How many times have we heard 'If only we had fusion power' I know that I have been hearing that line all of my life so far. So yes we need a plan that looks at reality first then as technology advances which it will that plan should be flexible enough to change with the times. One of my main objections to the assertion that nuclear power is the solution is that more than likely if we commit to nuclear power to replace coal etc that we will probably slowdown other more promising technology because of that commitment. Like I said starting up new nuclear plants is not cheap. But then at this stage of the game one accident would change the game. Or it could go the other way if we started having bad blackouts people would welcome new nuclear plants no problem. At any rate there are new nuclear plants in the works so really all of this is kind of a mute point. I guess it is good that this conversation is at least going around the country. Hopefully there will be some real interest and it wont just fade.
    Not really in disagreement with you except I still think nuclear has a place in providing power. I do not expect it to take over the majority of power production, any more than I expect Solar or Wind to provide a large percentage of the power generation.
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  5. #325
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by DVSentinel View Post
    Actually, I don't think most people care about the number of plants, other than those that realize they provide jobs, in which case they actually want more, not less.
    I think that you would be surprised. So what you are saying is that the public will go for any carrot in front of their faces that promises jobs?

    Interesting view of the right, since that is not what I have seen from them. I've seen them trying to protect coal and push natural gas too much to think that the average person on the "right" is promoting nuclear as a "magic bullet." It is more the middle pushing for it. The middle doesn't go whole hog environmentalist but would like to see the elimination of fossil fuels and are willing to accept Nuclear as the available primary source that can be exploited right now while allowing as much alternative sourcing and R&D into other sources as possible.
    Well so far I havenet seen anyone except people on the Right promote the idea of more nuclear power plants. If you have proof otherwise dont be shy show it.

    However, for me at least, possible does not mean increasing deficit spending in budgets that are already over a trillion dollars/year in deficit spending. While I would love to see more put into research and development, the simple fact is that we are now more that $16 trillion in debt and the deficit has exceeded $1 trillion for several years now. Is new technologies worth pursuing, yes, but pursuing at the cost of collapsing everything else in our country, no.
    I am not promoting spending public monies on anything. Research is research no matter who is doing it. I promote the concept of doing real research towards finding better methods of generating electricity. Talking about the debt the way that you are doing now only serves as political hype and nothing more. And my view on debt is that things need to change but that is not really the subject here. But if thats what you want to talk about we could talk about how promoting nuclear energy in the short term will add to that same debt. More nuclear power plants mean more subsidies which means a bigger debt. And your point was?

    Also, the "right" is not against alternative sources, they are against the government spending money on it since the industry was already expanding it for years without the government money. Part of this may even be that Obama gave that money to companies in Liberal states that competed with other companies in states that did not vote for him and that some of that money has been sent overseas instead of being kept in the US. Had the money been given equally to all companies involved in alternative power and spread equally, based upon population to all states, not just liberal ones, then there would probably be less resistance to it.
    Oh come on do you think that I will just let that one slide? What I mean by that is that your entire point is to make the Left look bad mainly the Democrats by proxy of Obama. I dont care for Obama I didnt vote him. Though I have to say that attacking Obama over the Green investment failures is a bit hypocritical. Its is not like there has not been the same type of failures by other non Democratic Presidents.

    Partisan Divide Over Alternative Energy Widens | Pew Research Center for the People and the Press

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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pinkie View Post
    O, *duh*. Of course.

    Still, if you want off the grid, there are technologies around that might could get you there -- one thing we all need is the right to sell excess power to the electric company, so none of needs a huge battery to store it. Parts of California have this -- maybe the whole state.
    Actually you want the batteries they do two things for you A) they store power and allow you to still have and generate power when the grid is down. Grid only systems go down when the grid goes down. B) The batteries act as a accumulater/buffer/dampener for your personal power grid. This helps in making your equipment IE inverters, chargers ect. last MUCH longer. Solar panels and windmills are just part of the actual process of generating electricity.
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  7. #327
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Quag View Post
    Not really in disagreement with you except I still think nuclear has a place in providing power. I do not expect it to take over the majority of power production, any more than I expect Solar or Wind to provide a large percentage of the power generation.
    While I do support nuclear, I don't think it should be the "only" solution. A variety of sources makes the entire grid more robust, and resistant to issues that target a particular energy source. While doing some reading I found a passage that discusses how different sources can be mutually supportive. See below:

    While the output from a single turbine can vary greatly and rapidly as local wind speeds vary, as more turbines are connected over larger and larger areas the average power output becomes less variable.[80] Studies by Graham Sinden (2009) suggest that, in practice, the variations in thousands of wind turbines, spread out over several different sites and wind regimes, are smoothed. As the distance between sites increases, the correlation between wind speeds measured at those sites, decreases.[81]

    The combination of diversifying variable renewables by type and location, forecasting their variation, and integrating them with despatchable renewables, flexible fueled generators, and demand response can create a power system that has the potential to meet our needs reliably. Integrating ever-higher levels of renewables is being successfully demonstrated in the real world:[82]


    In 2009, eight American and three European authorities, writing in the leading electrical engineers' professional journal, didn't find "a credible and firm technical limit to the amount of wind energy that can be accommodated by electricity grids". In Fact, not one of more than 200 international studies, nor official studies for the eastern and western U.S. regions, nor the International Energy Agency, has found major costs or technical barriers to reliably integrating up to 30% variable renewable supplies into the grid, and in some studies much more. – Reinventing Fire[82]

    Solar power tends to be complementary to wind.[83][84] On daily to weekly timescales, high pressure areas tend to bring clear skies and low surface winds, whereas low pressure areas tend to be windier and cloudier. On seasonal timescales, solar energy typically peaks in summer, whereas in many areas wind energy is lower in summer and higher in winter.[85] Thus the intermittencies of wind and solar power tend to cancel each other somewhat. In 2007 the Institute for Solar Energy Supply Technology of the University of Kassel pilot-tested a combined power plant linking solar, wind, biogas and hydrostorage to provide load-following power around the clock and throughout the year, entirely from renewable sources.[86]

    Wind power - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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  8. #328
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Someone commented on dry cask storage for the fuel rods. I couldn't find the post to reply directly. Those casks cost $1 million dollars each. There are approximately one thousand fuel rods stored at each reactor site. One thousand casks at each site solves the problem at a cost of 1000 x 1000000 or One billion dollars each site. Since it is just money and this is a significant health threat, why do the Reactor owners not do this. It is our safety and not theirs. It's just money. Why don't 1,000 dry casks dot the landscapes of all our Nuclear Plants? It's just a billion dollar problem, another cost of doing business and mitigating future contamination. I'm suggesting that profits outweigh safety and that is the problem inherent in our Nuclear Industry. At 104 Nuclear plants the problem is only $104 billion. Does this post create and acknowledge relativity.

  9. #329
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by DaveFagan View Post
    Someone commented on dry cask storage for the fuel rods. I couldn't find the post to reply directly. Those casks cost $1 million dollars each. There are approximately one thousand fuel rods stored at each reactor site. One thousand casks at each site solves the problem at a cost of 1000 x 1000000 or One billion dollars each site. Since it is just money and this is a significant health threat, why do the Reactor owners not do this. It is our safety and not theirs. It's just money. Why don't 1,000 dry casks dot the landscapes of all our Nuclear Plants? It's just a billion dollar problem, another cost of doing business and mitigating future contamination. I'm suggesting that profits outweigh safety and that is the problem inherent in our Nuclear Industry. At 104 Nuclear plants the problem is only $104 billion. Does this post create and acknowledge relativity.
    I think your estimate is a bit high:

    "Robert Alvarez, a former senior official in Bill Clinton's Energy Department, recently made the same argument. Writing in the Huffington Post, Alvarez said that the United States “should promptly take steps to reduce these risks [associated with cooling ponds] by placing all spent nuclear fuel older than five years in dry, hardened storage casks [as] Germany did 25 years ago. It would take about 10 years at a cost between $3.5 and $7 billion. If the cost were transferred to energy consumers, the expenditure would result in a marginal increase of less than 0.4 cents per kilowatt hour for consumers of nuclear-gneerated electricity."
    Case for Accelerating Dry Cask Storage of Spent Nuclear Fuel - IEEE Spectrum


    The Nuclear Waste Policy Act established a user fee to pay 0.1 cent per kilowatt-hour to cover the search for and establishment of a high-level radioactive waste repository, but the law did not allow these funds to be used to enhance the safety of onsite spent fuel storage.

    "As of fiscal year 2010, only $7.3 billion had been spent of the $25.4 billion collected through user fees, leaving $18.1 billion unspent. This sum could more than pay for the dry, hardened storage of spent reactor fuel older than five years at all reactors. Safely securing the spent fuel that is currently in crowded pools at reactors should be a public safety priority of the highest degree. The cost of fixing the nation’s nuclear vulnerabilities may be high, but the price of doing too little is far higher."

    Issues in Science and Technology, Winter 2012, Improving Spent-Fuel Storage at Nuclear Reactors
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  10. #330
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    Re: Would You Tolerate Nuclear Power For Energy Independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by EagleAye View Post
    I think your estimate is a bit high:

    "Robert Alvarez, a former senior official in Bill Clinton's Energy Department, recently made the same argument. Writing in the Huffington Post, Alvarez said that the United States “should promptly take steps to reduce these risks [associated with cooling ponds] by placing all spent nuclear fuel older than five years in dry, hardened storage casks [as] Germany did 25 years ago. It would take about 10 years at a cost between $3.5 and $7 billion. If the cost were transferred to energy consumers, the expenditure would result in a marginal increase of less than 0.4 cents per kilowatt hour for consumers of nuclear-gneerated electricity."
    Case for Accelerating Dry Cask Storage of Spent Nuclear Fuel - IEEE Spectrum


    The Nuclear Waste Policy Act established a user fee to pay 0.1 cent per kilowatt-hour to cover the search for and establishment of a high-level radioactive waste repository, but the law did not allow these funds to be used to enhance the safety of onsite spent fuel storage.

    "As of fiscal year 2010, only $7.3 billion had been spent of the $25.4 billion collected through user fees, leaving $18.1 billion unspent. This sum could more than pay for the dry, hardened storage of spent reactor fuel older than five years at all reactors. Safely securing the spent fuel that is currently in crowded pools at reactors should be a public safety priority of the highest degree. The cost of fixing the nation’s nuclear vulnerabilities may be high, but the price of doing too little is far higher."

    Issues in Science and Technology, Winter 2012, Improving Spent-Fuel Storage at Nuclear Reactors

    I don't think my cost estimates are high. I think they are nearly exactly correct. Be that as it may, we agree that this solution is being avoided because of cost to the operators. I think that is unconscionable. Their first obligation in this matter is to Public Safety and they are ignoring that to save a dollar, or as I suspect to wait until bankruptcy and fiest the costs upon the public. This dry cask storage has been an option available to all operators for a long time and has not been implemented because of costs/expense. Doesn't that sufficiently display the mentality of the Corporations ( who can file bankruptcy ) behind the Nuclear plants? Do you think we should trust Big Money? Get real, we're talking about a viable storage method being ignored because of cost. Dollars and cents. Profit. Capitalism. This by entities that do not live and breathe, but have powers in excess of those that live and breathe. That'd be you and me and Grandma.

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