Nuclear Energy

Nuclear energy is an energy production method of creating heat through the fission process of atoms. Heat is converted into electricity using steam at the nuclear power plants, the heat to make the steam is generated by splitting the atoms apart. This splitting of atoms is called fission. Fission normally takes place when the atom of a heavy metal such as uranium is split into two when it is struck by a neutron. The nucleus releases two or three neutrons thereby releasing energy in the process. The process repeats itself until sufficient heat is released. The heat produced is then used to produce steam used for turning the turbines to produce electricity.

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Nuclear energy constitutes to 15% of the worlds electricity. As of 2005, nuclear power provided 6.3%, with the U.S., France, and Japan together accounting for 56.5% of nuclear generated electricity. In 2007, the IAEA reports indicated that there were 439 nuclear power reactors in operation in the world operating in 31 countries

Settlement distant in the location of nuclear power plant is an important factor in its establishment. A nuclear plant should be situated in a very low settlement area or very far from settlement. Moreover Proper infrastructure should be set up in cases of emergencies. In addition proper mitigating measures and responses should be in place. The minimum allowable radius around a plant is 30 miles. This is to minimise risk of contamination in case a contamination occurs. In this respect a plant situated 125 miles from place would not evoke any sentiments of dissatisfaction from me. The distance is safe enough in case an accident occurs. I strongly feel that all factors considered, such as the strength, direction and speed of the prevailing wind, I will have had sufficient time to receive warning and vacate. However a plant sited only 12.5 miles from my place is unacceptable. It posses a great risk to health since am exposed to radioactive substances every other day. I will live in constant fear due to impeding accident that might occur. I would seek for a court injunction to suspend further construction of the plant pending a proper Environmental Impact Assessment.

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Due to its level of efficiency nuclear power has been adopted by most developed nations. This is largely attributed to the following advantages: Nuclear power costs do not differ significantly from that of coal; therefore production process of the energy is cheap. It also produces a large amount of energy from very small amounts of fuel input. The largest form of debate in any energy production system is its relation to the environment, how much waste it produces and whether it impacts positively on the environment. Cost benefit analysis pertaining to the production of nuclear waste has revealed that it produces small amounts of waste with minimum cost o environmental Impact management. On the other hand nuclear energy is ore reliable than most forms of energy.