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Nuclear Power Industry - Coursework Example

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Nuclear power industry: Introduction: Nuclear energy holds utmost importance for the well being and solidarity of any nation since it helps immensely in energy production which could be used for meeting electricity ends. The first nuclear reactor commenced operation in August 1947 in UK…
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Download file to see previous pages This reduction in total electricity contribution by the nuclear plants is largely due to the fact that many power plants have been shut down over the past. As constructing more nuclear stations is not considered economically viable, so any such plans are largely abandoned. The supplies of standard quality carbon-free electricity have also increased as a result of fuel reprocessing from nuclear stations in UK. Advantages of using nuclear power to generate electricity: One of the greatest all time advantages of nuclear power is that only a small portion of it can be generated into large amounts of electricity to boost a nation’s economy. Another worth mentioning benefit is that nuclear fuel doe not result into polluting the environment by releasing a lot of poisonous greenhouse gases. Technology provides ready means to reprocess nuclear fuel for generating carbon-free electricity. Recycling used fuel is a great achievement and many “commercial reprocessing plants operate in France, UK, and Russia with a capacity of some 5000 tones per year” (World Nuclear Association, 2011). Another advantage of nuclear electricity source is that fuel is inexpensive and waste produced is markedly compact. The acid rain effects are also marginal compared to other electricity sources (Nuclear Tourist, 2009). ...
The environmental impact of uranium mines is also less disastrous compared to other fossil fuels. Nuclear power stations also do not emit carbon dioxide and sulphur among other toxicants and sulphur emissions are principally responsible for acid rains. Disadvantages of using nuclear power to generate electricity: Meeting costs for emergency purposes and radioactive waste forms one of the biggest disadvantages of nuclear source of electricity. A large capital cost is required to meet such ends. Waste storage issue is another big problem and large capital is also required for that to be invested in storage systems. The waste produced by using nuclear fuel is highly radioactive. The nuclear wastes are radioactive and capable of posing a health threat owing to emission of radiations unlike the coal wastes which can pose threat to humanity only on grounds of chemical activity (Cohen, 2011). The more nuclear stations there are, the more there is the risk for nuclear attacks and sabotages also. Despite the reality-based claims that nuclear power generated wastes can be highly toxic and lethal for the world at large, still handling the radioactive waste is not that much of a big issue and the net amount of nuclear waste produced from nuclear operation based on one year “would occupy a volume of half a cubic yard, which means that it would fit under an ordinary card table with room to spare” (Cohen, 2011). This means that the quantity of waste produced by nuclear plants is so small unlike the massive wastes produced by coal-burning sources that it can be taken care of very sophisticatedly. The probability of acid rains also increases with millions of tons of waste generated by the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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