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Old 10-22-2015, 11:37 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Old 10-22-2015, 02:05 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hersbird View Post
Nuclear is the way to go.
Sorry, no. Nuclear waste continues to build up and be hazardous to life for millenia to come. Direct solar in the form of wind, biomass, hydro, PV, concentration and tidal is the way to go if one is concerned with sustainability.
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Old 10-22-2015, 03:00 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Interesting, but a little misleading because it shows where the generation is, not the consumption. So a lot of the hydro produced in the Pacific Northwest gets shipped to places like Southern California (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacific_DC_Intertie ), and very little of the hydro generation in the Sierra Nevada gets used there.
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Old 10-22-2015, 07:56 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UFO View Post
Sorry, no. Nuclear waste continues to build up and be hazardous to life for millenia to come. Direct solar in the form of wind, biomass, hydro, PV, concentration and tidal is the way to go if one is concerned with sustainability.
Really take reneck's advice above and https://youtu.be/x42qi7Fz1L0

Most waste, the most dangerous as well, can be recycled and reused. The rest is mostly "potentially contaminated" that is difficult to clear (even though it isn't measurable) or it has very low levels of radiation. Smoke detectors or Coleman lantern mantels give off more radiation then some of this stuff.
I once was doing normal search for uncontrolled radioactive material we periodically did and was able to detect a shipyard worker 40 feet away through a steel wall who had been given a barium xray the day before. Crazy levels, more then anything our reactor exposed us to as a common medical procedure.
This lady is a trip, and has a ton of videos. Here is one about eating apples from Chernobyl and comparing it to mushrooms from Germany. https://youtu.be/j6mreZ98_Ug
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Old 10-23-2015, 12:15 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Hydro-electric, wind and solar are definitely the safest ways to make energy. Well, maybe not if you care about birds - solar-thermal and wind plants kill tons of birds. And hydroelectric plants probably have some impact on the migration and lifecycles of fish. Really, energy can't be reasonable concentrated and made usable by humans without some impact on the earth.

As others have said though, nuclear plants are far safer even than coal and oil plants, which have killed many more people and animals, even when you compare per unit of energy produced. You'd be surprised at the amount of heavy metals that end up in the soil and water table surrounding a #2 or coal power plants, nevermind what's in the air itself.
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Old 10-23-2015, 03:45 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Sorry, no. Nuclear waste continues to build up and be hazardous to life for millenia to come. Direct solar in the form of wind, biomass, hydro, PV, concentration and tidal is the way to go if one is concerned with sustainability.
The radioactive material was mined from the earth, so it was already in our environment.

Using it up in a reactor is actually reducing the total amount of radioactive material on this planet. The "waste" can mostly be recycled.

Beyond that, the solution to pollution is dilution.
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Old 10-23-2015, 02:46 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
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The radioactive material was mined from the earth, so it was already in our environment.
Not quite true, unfortunately. While there are a lot of radioactive materials in the environment (everything, basically), most aren't very radioactive. But if you take say uranium, with half-lives of 704 million (U-235) and 4.47 billion (U-238) years, and whack it with a bunch of neutrons so that it breaks apart into chunks (nuclear fission), some of those chunks are pretty radioactive.

The real problem isn't the radioactivity, which is easily managed. It's the hysterical reaction among a fraction of the public that greatly exaggerates the danger. Same thing as those anti-vaccine nut cases, who thought a small chance (now proven to be zero, as the initial reports were faked) of becoming autistic was somehow worse than death from disease.
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Old 10-23-2015, 07:37 PM   #18 (permalink)
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There was a post a while ago comparing deaths by different energy sources. I found this:

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Old 10-24-2015, 01:53 AM   #19 (permalink)
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It's also "interesting" to see all the reports showing that the so-called "Dead Zone" around Chernobyl actually hosts a thriving ecosystem. Seems like that deadly radioactive nuclear waste is less harmful to wildlife than humans :-(
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Old 10-24-2015, 02:54 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
Not quite true, unfortunately.
It is quite true. The radioactive material used in power plants is mined from the earth. In other words, it's already in nature, we just concentrated it to make it useful for power generation.

Again, the solution to pollution is dilution; just like nature has already done.

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