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'Is Nuclear Power the Solution to our Energy Problems?' Case Study

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Is Nuclear Power the Solution to our Energy Problems?

Is Nuclear Power the Solution to our Energy Problems?

                                                                 By Sean Hudson

                                    Contents

Introduction                                                                                   3

Background Information                                                               4

How Cloning Benefits Society                                                      5

How Cloning Endangers Society                                                  7

Conclusion                                                                                    9

Bibliography                                                                                10

                              Introduction

The use of nuclear power is a controversial topic. Some support nuclear power believing that it offers the solution to our current energy problems. Others, however, believe that nuclear power is a dangerous form of energy as an accident can have severe consequences such as the  Chernobyl disaster.

In the following case study I will study and discuss the benefits and dangers of nuclear power, provide evidence through use of sources and finally end with a balanced conclusion summarising both the case study and my own opinions.

This case study will be viewed by other year 11 students so in order to match my target audience I have used various presentational devices including a range of font types, pictures and diagrams.

Background Information

                   What is Nuclear Power?image03.png

Nuclear fission takes place when radioactive atoms are made so unstable that they split in two releasing large amounts of energy. Nuclear power is the use of sustained nuclear fission to generate heat and electricity.Nuclear power plants provide about 6% of the world's energy and 13–14% of the world's electricity. There are currently over 440 commercial nuclear reactors in the world, operating in 30 different countries.

Nuclear power commonly uses an isotope of uranium, U-235. This is the only isotope of any element that can sustain chain reactions which occurs naturally. Uranium is quite common, it occurs in most rocks

...read more.

Middle

 An article from Springer.com

"nuclear power technologies can produce large amounts of energy from small amounts of fuel, while emitting very low amounts of greenhouse gases. They reduce countries' reliance on fossil fuel for their energy provision."

This source gives some of the major benefits of nuclear power. This source shows that due to the world rapidly running out of fossil fuels a new source of power is necessary and that nuclear power  could fill that role as it produces 'large amounts of energy from small amounts of fuel'. The source also shows that nuclear power does not contribute to global warming as it emits 'very low amounts of greenhouse gases.' This makes nuclear power seem like a very viable option for the future of energy production.

Springer is a global publishing company which publishes books, e-books and peer-reviewed journals in science, technical and medical (STM) publishing. Within STM, Springer is the largest book publisher and second-largest journal publisher worldwide. This suggests that Springer is a well respected publishing company, making the source seem reliable.

Source 2: Quote from energy secretary Chris Huhne

“Offshore wind is assessed at £130 per megawatt hour, gas with carbon capture at £95 per megawatt hour, and nuclear at £66 per megawatt hour. These figures take account of waste and decommissioning costs, so nuclear should still be the cheapest low carbon source of electricity.”

This source compares the cost of three low carbon technologies, offshore wind, gas with carbon capture and nuclear and ranks nuclear as the cheapest option.

...read more.

Conclusion

As shown in source 6 even if safety precautions were met nuclear power plants are still at risk of being targeted by terrorist however all nuclear power plants are protected by a series of physical barriers and a trained security force to prevent such acts of terror. This makes terrorist attacks difficult but still possible.

Nuclear waste is also a problem as shown in source 4, "nuclear power produces radioactive waste that remains dangerous for tens of thousands of years."  However new technologies such as breeder reactors and thorium reactors could make nuclear waste less of a problem, and use less uranium fuel.

Overall after extensive research into the nuclear power, I have concluded that cloning could be a convenient solution to our energy problems as long as safety precautions are set. I believe that the best option is to use other forms of renewable energy as well nuclear so that we don't completely rely on nuclear power but use nuclear as our primary source of energy.

                        Bibliography

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fission

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power

http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf54.html

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/mar/21/pro-nuclear-japan-fukushima

http://www.benefitsofnuclearpower.com/

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/mar/21/pro-nuclear-japan-fukushima

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110505083731.htm

http://utilitiessavings.co.uk/2011/10/nuclear-is-cheapest-low-carbon-energy-source/

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/mar/28/fukushima-reactor-radiation-levels

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/yes-please-no-thanks-for-and-against-nuclear-power-517402.html

http://www.ehow.co.uk/about_4759852_dangers-nuclear-power-plants.html

http://www.cleanenergyinsight.org/diversions/cartoon-the-solution-is-clear/

http://www.cartoonstock.com/newscartoons/directory/g/government_spin.asp

                   Physics Case Study|Capital City Academy|Sean Hudson                                

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Radioactivity section.

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Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

4 star(s)

This is a well researched report that has an interesting approach to presenting information taken from sources.
1. The structure is good and flows well.
2. The discussion of the reliability of the sources is done well.
3. The conclusion is good, although it makes some large claims.
4. The reference section should use either the Harvard or Oxford system.
**** (4 stars)

Marked by teacher Luke Smithen 05/07/2013

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