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How Fear of Nuclear Power is Warming our Planet

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The world is presently decommissioning nuclear reactors faster than the increase in wind and solar power (1). Solar energy is only available 26% of the time and wind 33%. Nuclear is 24/7. To make up for the net nuclear decrease, we are increasing our burning of fossil fuels. They are raising carbon dioxide emissions that are warming our planet. This is particularly true in Germany.

Bill Gates is presently funding next generation nuclear power. TerraPower's nuclear pilot plant is being built in China. This traveling wave reactor converts depleted uranium, a byproduct of the nuclear-fission process, into usable fuel.

Thorium molten salt nuclear reactors (MSR), demonstrated at Oak Ridge National Laboratory 1965-1970, consume nearly 100% of their fuel, compared with 3% for older reactors with solid uranium fuel (2). MSRs eliminate the need for Yucca Mountain storage by consuming nuclear waste. Thorium fluoride molten fuel for MSRs is of no weapons value. Thorium fuel is more abundant and cheaper than uranium. MSRs require no expensive containment since they operate close to atmospheric pressure.

REFERENCES: (1) Michael Shellenberger YouTube 2016 TED Talk.
(2) David A. Cornell. “Fracking and the Future of Fuel.” Physics Today, pgs 10 -11. February 2017

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How Fear of Nuclear Power is Warming our Planet

  1. 1. HOW FEAR OF NUCLEAR POWER IS WARMING OUR PLANETAmerican Physical Society New England Secton Meeting, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, MA April 14, 2017i Paul H. Carr www.MirrorOfNature.org
  2. 2. How fear of nuclear power is hurting the environment | YouTube 2016 TED Talk by Michael Shellenberger •Solar energy is available 26% of the time, wind 33% of the time, and nuclear 98%. • We are decommissioning nuclear reactors faster than the increase in wind and solar. •To make up for this net decrease, we are increasing our burning of fossil fuels, raising carbon dioxide emissions, and warming our planet. •This is particularly true in Germany
  3. 3. GLOBALLY: The 7% decrease in Nuclear generated electricity is greater than the +3.8% increase in Solar & Wind. To make up for the difference, we are burning more fossil fuels, which increase our carbon dioxide emissions . This is particularly true in Germany.
  4. 4. PROBLEM: IN the US by 2040, NATURAL GAS & COAL WILL BE THE LARGEST SOURCES OF ELECTRICITY. THEY BOTH EMIT CARBON DIOXIDE, WHICH WILL CONTINUE TO WARM OUR PLANET. SOLUTION: NEXT GENERATION NUCLEAR REACTORS HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO INCREASE AND THEREBY REDUCE CARBON EMISSIONS. Figure from “Coal’s Last Kick” TIME, April 17, 2017
  5. 5. Trump Could Fuel A Nuclear Energy Boom In 2017 By James Stafford - Dec 06, 2016 http://oilprice.com/Alternative-Energy/Nuclear-Power/Trump-Could-Fuel-A-Nuclear-Energ When I asked MIT Prof of Nuclear Science & Engineering, Ian Hutchison about this he replied, “The Republicans are less scared of nuclear energy than the Democrats.” • MIT is presently designing tethered off- shore nuclear reactors
  6. 6. Bill Gates is funding new clean energy, but it's not solar or wind http://www.businessinsider.com/bill-gates-talks-private-nuclear-fission-plant- terrapower-2016-4 Gates said that TerraPower's nuclear pilot plant will be built in China. The economics, safety, waste, and all the key parameters are a significant improvement over present reactors. The traveling wave reactor converts depleted uranium, a byproduct of present reactors, into usable fuel.
  7. 7. THORIUM MOLTEN SALT NUCLEAR REACTORS Demonstrated 1965-1970 at Oak Ridge National Laboratory •Consume nearly 100% of their fuel, compared with 3% for older reactors with solid uranium fuel. •Thorium Molten Salt Reactors (MSR) eliminate need for Yucca Mountain storage by consuming nuclear waste. •Thorium fluoride molten fuel for MSRs is of no weapons value. •Thorium fuel is more abundant and cheaper than uranium. •MSRs require no expensive containment since they operate close to atmospheric pressure. Reference: David A. Cornell. “Fracking and the Future of Fuel.” Physics Today, pgs 10 -11. February 2017
  8. 8. Safer Nuclear Power, at Half the Price Transatomic is developing a new kind of molten-salt reactor designed to overcome the major barriers to nuclear power. by Kevin Bullis. March 12, 2013 Technology Review Transatomic Power, a MIT spinoff, is developing a nuclear reactor that it estimates will cut the overall cost of a nuclear power plant in half. It’s an updated molten-salt reactor, a type that’s highly resistant to meltdowns. A conventional nuclear power plant is cooled by water, which boils at a temperature far below the 2,000 °C at the core of a fuel pellet. Even after the reactor is shut down, it must be continuously cooled by pumping in water. Using molten salt as the coolant solves these problems. The salt, which is mixed in with the fuel, has a boiling point significantly higher than the temperature of the fuel. The reactor has a built-in thermostat—if it starts to heat up, the salt expands, spreading out the fuel and slowing the reactions. That gives the mixture a chance to cool off. “It’s walk-away safe,” says Dewan, the company’s chief science officer. “If you lose electricity, even if there are no operators on site to pull levers, it will coast to a stop.” The company’s biggest challenge might come from China, which is investing $350 million over five years to develop molten-salt reactors of its own. It plans to build a two-megawatt test reactor by 2020.
  9. 9. http://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2017/3/27/15043522/nuclear-power- future-innovation LOWER COST
  10. 10. China plans to build 400 nuclear plants by midcentury. Bill Gates’ TerraPower, for instance, has designed a traveling wave reactor, which utilizes nuclear waste. Another design, by two MIT researchers, again uses waste, mixed into molten salt. In short, the nuclear reactors of the future will utilize not just regular uranium but will take care of the waste as well – the same waste that raises so much concern among environmentalists and the general public.
  11. 11. Source Total Investment: 60 Year Project Annual Before-Tax Revenue Market Price to Break Even at 15 Years Life Span before Retooling Comparative ROI at 60 Years ($0.145/KWhr) Nuclear $17.0 Billion $1.244 Billion $0.12/KWhr 60 years $74.7 Billion Land-based wind + batteries $44.6 Billion $0.873 Billion $$0.11/KWhr 25 years $52.4 Billion Solar + Batteries $55.8 Billion $0.208 Billion $0.15/KWhr 25 years $12.5 Billion     • Wind is available about 36% of the time and solar about 26%. Renewables need to charge batteries to supply electricity 24/7. • Kaui (Hawaii) is planning to use Tesla grid-level storage batteries and has a contract for $0.145/KWhr for 20 years. This is a small installation, but it can be used as a comparison. Telsa also offers grid level batteries for sale at $2.5 million/MW. Over 60 years, the standard license period for nuclear reactors, nuclear provides the largest return on investment (ROI) (Emery et
  12. 12. THE “WICKED PROBLEM” OF CLIMATE CHANGE: WHAT IS IT DOING TO US AND FOR US? 63nd Conference of the Institute on Religion in an Age of Science, www.iras.org June 24—July 1, 2017. Star Island off Portsmouth, NH. • Climate change is complex with causes and consequences in economic, ecological, ethical, and technological realms. • How can global warming be a catalyst for spiritual and societal transformation? 
  13. 13. Solomon H. Katz, Ph.D is a leading expert on the anthropology of food, U of Penn. He was editor-in-chief of the Encyclopedia of Food and Culture published by Scribner (2003). Prof Katz was Chair of the AAA Task Force on World Food Problems. Barry Costa-Pierce, Ph.D, Chair of the Department of Marine Sciences, University of New England. Biddeford, Maine. Pioneer of the field of “Ecological Aquaculture” and helped develop the UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s global protocols. Can World Food Production Keep up with Population Growth in the Face of Climate Change & Sea Acidification?
  14. 14. Solar PVs on historic Star Island form the largest off-grid array in NE.
  15. 15. S Sunrise on Star Island
  16. 16. SUNSET OVER PORTSMOUTH, NH FROM STAR ISLAND Learn more at www.iras.org
  17. 17. 10/9/15 www. CitizensClimateLobby.org - Revenue neutral carbon fee with dividend. (RNCFD) -Dividend would be returned to everyone. $2000 / family. -Stimulating economy & creating 2 million jobs.

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