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
HOW FEAR OF
IS WARMING OUR
PLANETAmerican Physical Society New England Secton Meeting,
Worcester Polytechnic Institute, MA April 14, 2017i
Paul H. Carr
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
GLOBALLY: The 7%
decrease in Nuclear
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
PROBLEM: IN the US by 2040,
NATURAL GAS & COAL WILL
BE THE LARGEST SOURCES OF
THEY BOTH EMIT CARBON
DIOXIDE, WHICH WILL
CONTINUE TO WARM OUR
NEXT GENERATION NUCLEAR
REACTORS HAVE THE
POTENTIAL TO INCREASE AND
THEREBY REDUCE CARBON
Figure from “Coal’s Last Kick” TIME, April 17, 2017
Trump Could Fuel A Nuclear Energy Boom In 2017
By James Stafford - Dec 06, 2016
When I asked MIT Prof of
Nuclear Science &
Ian Hutchison about this
he replied, “The
Republicans are less scared
of nuclear energy than the
• MIT is presently
designing tethered off-
shore nuclear reactors
Bill Gates is funding new clean energy, but
it's not solar or wind
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
The traveling wave reactor converts
depleted uranium, a byproduct of present
reactors, into usable fuel.
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
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.
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.
Source Total Investment:
60 Year Project
Market Price to
Break Even at 15
ROI at 60 Years
Nuclear $17.0 Billion $1.244 Billion $0.12/KWhr 60 years $74.7 Billion
$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
Over 60 years, the standard license period for nuclear reactors,
nuclear provides the largest return on investment (ROI) (Emery et
THE “WICKED PROBLEM” OF CLIMATE CHANGE:
WHAT IS IT DOING TO US AND FOR US?
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
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?
Solar PVs on historic Star Island form the largest off-grid array in NE.