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Should the UK government continue to invest in Nuclear power?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Science Case Study Should the UK government continue to invest in Nuclear power? By Ryan Thorman Introduction In this piece of coursework I will be looking how the government should continue to use Nuclear power in the UK. Here are some main reasons why I consider this question to be important for this society are many advantages and disadvantages to using nuclear power Advantages of Nuclear Power * Efficient: Nuclear plants can produce an awful let of electricity, up to about 2GW, which is comparable to coal plants. * Reliable: There is no need to worry about interruptions to the power supply: as long as there is uranium, there will be power. This is a stark contrast to most renewable energies which depend on the activity of the weather. * Clean: I'm using this term strictly to refer to the greenhouse gas emissions of a nuclear plant. There are some greenhouse gas emissions associated with the life cycle of uranium, as gases are emitted as it is mined and transported etc. However this is significantly less than the emissions associated with the burning of fossil fuels. Essentially, nuclear power would be "carbon-zero" if the the uranium were mined and transported in a more efficient way. There are issues with radioactive waste, however. * Supply: No, it's not going to last forever, but at least what there is is more easily accessible than oil. ...read more.

Middle

The plans would help meet the government's target of cutting carbon emissions by 60% by 2050, he said. And they would ensure the UK had secure energy supplies rather than relying increasingly on foreign gas imports. The review also proposes: * That electricity companies provide 20% of energy from renewables - up from the current 15% * Storing carbon dioxide in old oil fields - the UK is working with Norway to develop this * New incentives to make homes more energy efficient and to cut energy waste by businesses * Measures to cut the 7% of electricity currently used by domestic appliances left on standby * Encouraging smaller scale electricity generators, and combined heat and power plants, to be sited close to where the power is used For the Conservatives, shadow trade and industry secretary Alan Duncan said Mr Darling's statement contained "no real policies, no real action, no realdecisions". He said the review showed Mr Blair was "out on a limb" in his backing for new nuclear power stations - a position, he claimed, that was not shared by the Cabinet. Fresh look Edward Davey, the Lib Dems' trade and industry spokesman, warned: "By caving into the nuclear industry lobby, you have destroyed the possibility of cross-party consensus." London Mayor Ken Livingstone said it was "a colossal mistake" to head down the nuclear path again. ...read more.

Conclusion

As far as they were concerned it was a demonstration that hadn't worked. As far as I was concerned, it was a successful demonstration of how people can hide uncomfortable facts that don't suit their interests. The British Government is currently considering how we should meet our energy needs over the next 50 years and, as part of this process, over a thousand British citizens recently met as part of a consultation exercise to establish what we, the people, feel about the future of nuclear power in the UK. This consultation process is one of many that seem to be going on these days; 'consultation' is as much the buzzword of our time as 'transparency' and 'openness'. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthcomment/3315129/Nuclear-power-.-.-.-whats-the-problem.html By Dr Bryson Gore Published: 5:00PM GMT 20 Nov 2007 Date Accessed: 14th July 2009 This source is reliable as is comes from a broad sheet newspaper and is provides factual information. Eventually the leatherette bench cover began to smoke and one of the Nuclear Electric safety officers stepped in to pull the plug out of the mains. (It was subsequently established that, in transport, one of the pins in the socket had been bent thereby jamming the socket into the kettle.) This shows that neclear power can be easily encoperated into the society. In conclusion I personally think that the government shouldnt invest in more money into nuclear power as there are seriour health risk when things go wrong. However, nuclear power is a very affiantent way to produce energy that can be used in any weather. ...read more.

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