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Nuclear Energy Consumption and Economic Growth - Assignment Example

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This report “Nuclear Energy Consumption and Economic Growth” critically analyses the effectiveness of nuclear energy as an alternative source amidst safety concerns. It will examine the perception that nuclear energy can make a positive contribution to the reduction of greenhouse emissions…
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Nuclear Energy Consumption and Economic Growth
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Download file to see previous pages The lack of a global approach to handle the emission of greenhouse gases has been cited as the major reason why such emissions remain unstoppable. This is despite the fact that countries across the world signed the Kyoto Protocol aimed at reducing the rate of harmful emissions into the atmosphere by the year 2050. A report filed by the Panel on Climate Change indicated that there is a need to stabilize CO2 concentration in the atmosphere in order to prevent the world temperatures from rising to 2C.
Nuclear energy has been cited as playing a key role in containing the emission of carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases. In 2009 for example, nuclear energy accounted for over 15% of the global electricity production coming second after hydropower production. The incident that occurred in Fukushima Daiichi was caused by a combination of an earthquake and a Tsunami. The Fukushima incident led to new safety concerns that many people felt needed to be addressed. The incident put a lot of focus on the safety of the worker in nuclear power plants and the risk factors associated with the likelihood of such disasters. However, this has not stopped many countries from using nuclear power as an alternative energy source. The incident however clouded nuclear energy prospects in countries like Germany and Belgium that felt that the safety of their citizens comes first. Italy, on the other hand, reiterated that it had no intentions of re-introducing nuclear energy. Currently, most of the world’s nuclear power is underutilized. This is because nuclear power is being utilized by nations that have the capability to produce the same. According to Forsberg (2009, p.97), the future of nuclear power will, therefore, depend on among other factors; public acceptance, investment conditions and energy regulations across the world. Electricity production in nuclear reactors does not contain any greenhouse gases emission including any emission from the process itself. However, just like any other activity, nuclear energy production is often associated with tertiary activities that contribute to greenhouse gases emission despite the fact that the process itself does not pollute the environment. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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