7 March, 2015
The topic I have chosen for my research proposal is “Is Nuclear Energy Really Safe?” Like all forms of usable energy, nuclear power has its pros and cons to it. Many people feel that it is extremely hazardous because of the dramatic accidents that have happened in the past with nuclear power plants such as Chernobyl, Threemile Island, and Fukushima. However, with the possible underlying threats of having nuclear energy as a main source of power to an area, it’s capabilities could outweigh the problems. Nuclear energy is one of the best sustainable resources around on the planet, 1 Kg of reactor grade uranium contains enough energy to power a household light bulb for 1,172 years. I believe that with the proper precautions taken, nuclear energy can become our worlds primary source of energy, instead of burning fossil fuels. There are several controversial questions that come along with the topic that need to be answered such as: Are nuclear hazards any different from any other hazards that we accept everyday such as driving a vehicle or flying in a plane? Can nuclear power production be kept safe from natural disasters (Fukushima for example)? Where and how will the nuclear waste be stored and is it possible for it to be recycled? How would the waste be transported without the threat of terrorism? What is the average price tag for a nuclear plant to be built, worked, and maintained? Are the risks of nuclear
power worth the investment in the long run? These questions I feel like are the most important subtopics that go along with this argument. My opposition fits into my argument because it allows both the reader and I to be aware of the possible risks and facts that come along with nuclear energy. Meltdowns, natural disasters, human error in the plant, hazards of operating a nuclear plant with communities nearby, terrorist threats, possible exposure to nuclear radiation and a high cost to build/maintain a working nuclear reactor.
For the outline of paper, the introduction will be fairly basic. Giving a small amount of basic background information on nuclear energy/power, such as how a nuclear plant works and the process of how the uranium or other radioactive element is used to produce energy. End the introduction with a thesis, something along the lines of “With the adoption of nuclear power as a primary power source, the world will benefit greatly as opposed to the continuation of burning fossil fuels.” In the body of the argument, I will be answering the main controversial questions about nuclear power. I will investigate possible hazards of nuclear power plants and how they can be prevented. Safety from natural disasters will be discussed, the geographical location of where a power plant has to be built will have to be taken into consideration. Leftover waste from used radioactive elements will have to be addressed, what happens to it after it has been used? Where is it transported to afterwards? How is it transported in the first place? Are the workers transporting the used elements considered safe from the radiation? Lastly, would the hazardous risk of building a nuclear power plant be worth the initial investment?
Clery, Daniel. “Nuclear industry dares to dream of a new dawn; reactor builders think that fossil fuel prices and climate fears will revive nuclear power. But will now reactor designs overcome the concerns of utilities and the public?” Science.
Opposing Viewpoints. 19 Aug. 2005. Web. 20 March 2015. Clery’s article in summary was about how with natural gas prices on the rise and stocks of oil are going down, new energy options are being looked at, nuclear energy being one of them. With the need of new energy sources, nuclear energy could see a ...
Bibliography: Opposing Viewpoints. 19 Aug. 2005. Web. 20 March 2015.
Clery’s article in summary was about how with natural gas prices on the rise and
Viewpoints. 2011. Web. 20 March 2015.
In Moore’s interview, he clears up the fog about nuclear energy. He states that
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