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While a nuclear power plant is completely safe under ideal conditions, the failure of a poorly designed facility in Chernobyl led to the world's largest single eco-disaster. But a Pulitzer Prize-winning author argues that nuclear is safer than most energy sources and is needed if the world hopes to radically decrease its carbon emissions. In light of the tragic events unfolding in Japan, the safety of nuclear power is being publicly debated. Throughout the history of nuclear power plants, there have been a few major events that have occurred, with the most well-known one being Chernobyl. – Is nuclear power safe for humans and the environment? It’s about 1 million times greater than that of other traditional energy sources and because of this, the amount of used nuclear fuel is not as big as you might think.. All of the used nuclear fuel produced by the U.S. nuclear energy industry over the last 60 years could fit on a football field at a depth of less than 10 yards! Many environmentalists have opposed nuclear power, citing its dangers and the difficulty of disposing of its radioactive waste. No member of the public has ever been injured or killed in the entire 50-year history of commercial nuclear power in the U.S. Cumulative net GHG emissions prevented assuming nuclear power replaces fossil fuels. In fact, recent studies have shown that it is safer to work in a nuclear power plant than an office [4]. – Is nuclear power safe for humans and the environment? Open-pit mining for uranium is safe for miners but leaves behind radioactive particles, causes erosion, and even pollutes nearby sources of water. – Read statements, including post-Fukushima quotes, from experts such as John Hutton, Chairman of the Nuclear Industry Association (pro), Helen Caldicott, President of the Nuclear Policy Research Institute (con), the US Department of Energy (pro), and the Dalai Lama and nine The three panels are ordered the same as in Fig. Figure 3. 1. – Read statements, including post-Fukushima quotes, from experts such as John Hutton, Chairman of the Nuclear Industry Association (pro), Solar power, wind power, geothermal power, hybrid and electric cars, and aggressive energy efficiency are climate solutions that are safer, cheaper, faster, more secure, and less wasteful than nuclear power. In other words, projected nuclear power could reduce the CO 2 mitigation burden for meeting this target by as much as 16-48%. # 4: Nuclear energy is not safe. Truth: Nuclear energy is as safe or safer than any other form of energy available. 1, except that mean values for both the all coal and all gas cases are labeled. Nuclear power plants have a greater impact on the environment than just the waste they produce. A nuclear meltdown is a serious risk and could leave the land unlivable for decades. Nuclear fuel is extremely dense. Nuclear Incidents. Of course, with the good comes the bad and nuclear power is no different. The mining and enrichment of uranium are not environmentally friendly processes. – Is nuclear power safe for humans and the environment? Learn more about the debate with our resource that features expert opinions from Helen Caldicott, US Dept. 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