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Should the World Increase Its Reliance on Nuclear Energy? via The Wall Street Journal

The Fukushima nuclear disaster last year in Japan changed the discussion of nuclear power. Suddenly, for many people, the dangers of a nuclear accident overshadowed the promise of nuclear power as a clean, readily available source of energy. Around the world, public opinion and many government officials turned against nuclear power.

More recently, growing concerns about Iran’s nuclear-energy program have fueled opposition to the spread of nuclear power around the globe.

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Yes: Climate Change Demands It

By Mark Lynas

In a world with limited need for energy and no danger of climate change, it would be fine to be antinuclear. However, this isn’t the world we inhabit.

In the real world, a growing population of seven billion will reach as much as 10 billion by midcentury, most living in the emerging countries whose dramatic economic progress requires vast quantities of cheap energy. If this energy comes primarily from fossil fuels, we face a devastating degree of global warming.

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No: It Is Costly and Dangerous

By Peter A. Bradford

If asked whether we should increase our reliance on caviar to fight world hunger, most people would laugh. Relying on an overly expensive commodity to perform an essential task spends too much money for too little benefit, while foreclosing more-promising approaches.

That is nuclear power’s fundamental flaw in the search for plentiful energy without climate repercussions, though reactors are also more dangerous than caviar unless you’re a sturgeon.

Read more at Should the World Increase Its Reliance on Nuclear Energy?

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