Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Nuclear technology

I've been reading a book titled The New Nuclear Danger by Dr. Helen Caldicott. It is an eyeopener to say the least. It primarily focuses on nuclear weapons and their development but it makes you think with so many other facts and points made. I'm not going to do a book review here but it is a good read. I have seen it in the discount racks as a new version was released in 2004. I'm reading the 2002 version, which seems dated with all that has gone on militarily in the world, but it is still timely. The Bush administration is obviously chastised here but the book also reflects on the Clinton administration's inability and unwillingness to change the nuclear weapons policy of the U.S.

The environmental impacts of nuclear technology are astounding. The waste generated from nuclear plants and weapons production is astounding and the environmental damage and health effects are widespread. To further compound the problem, depleted uranium is then used in other "conventional" weapons that create additional pollution and health hazards.

Is nuclear energy the answer to the climate change problem and our electricity shortage? I doubt it. The dual use potential of the technology combined with our current inability to handle the waste safely makes it far too dangerous.

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