Greenpeace co-founder is pro-nuclear power

Patrick Moore left Greenpeace in the 80’s over “ideological differences” and now co-chairs a pro-nuclear power coalition.

The people who were most concerned about climate change were most opposed to nuclear power. Greenpeace is against fossil fuel, nuclear and hydroelectric power. Those three technologies produce over 99 percent of world energy. What kind of a path to a sustainable future is that?

I *like* electricity. It provides power for refrigerated food, lights, hospital operating rooms, the Internet, cell phones, etc. and without our lives would be vastly more difficult and primitive. So, in an era of global warming and peak oil, nuclear power seems a real good way to keep the lights on.

The US already gets 20% of its power from nuclear energy. Why not make that 50%? We absolutely also need to continue to cut usage and develop alternative, clean power sources. Like I’ve been saying for a while, we need to do everything, and do it now.

7 Responses to Greenpeace co-founder is pro-nuclear power

  1. DJ Wed, Nov 21, 2007 at 1:35 am #

    I’ve got serious reservations about (1) environmental impact of uranium mining, (2) safe (i.e. terrorist-free) transportation of nuclear naterials, and (3) safe storage of the waste for tens of thousands of years. Until these are resolved, I’m against it. Theoretically, on-site recycling would take care of all three– but that’s not what’s currently done.

    BUT– there is a way to increase the nuclear percentage to 40% of U.S. power generation without building a single new plant or mine: cut our electric usage in half. Considering about a third to half of all household electricity is wasted, and in some industries the percentage is higher, that’s not as unrealistic as it sounds.

    Yes, I’m saying most households could cut their electricity usage by a third or more without breaking a sweat just by using CFLs, turning off appliances (including lights and computers) when not in use, and shutting off TVs and such at the wall. There are more ways to cut waste, but in most households, just those steps would make a huge difference.

  2. John Couzin Wed, Nov 21, 2007 at 7:06 am #

    Living in Scotland I am deeply concerned when I hear people push the nuclear option. We have radioactive contaminated beaches, a contaminated pit of radioactive sludge that is costing billions to control, if it can be controled at all, and a major problem with radioactive waste that nobody has yet come up with a method of containment. We are talking hunrdeds of thousnads of years of foolfroof storage, plus we have had several “leaks” from accidents at nuclear power stations. Nobody wants to live anywhere near such possibilities, nor do we have the right to bring up children anywhere near these areas. There are a host of alternatives, small and clean plus better efficiency but big business will only push for those large projects where pots of money can be made and to hell with the environment and the people.

  3. Bob Morris Wed, Nov 21, 2007 at 7:56 am #

    All good points. What happened in Scotland that made things so toxic? Yikes.

    France gets, I think, 70% of their power from nuclear and have had no problems. So it apparently can be done.

  4. DJ Wed, Nov 21, 2007 at 9:20 am #

    According to Wiki, France gets 79% of its power from nukes. Frontline says 12% comes from hydro. Frontline also notes that the French trust their govenrment to manage technology for the benefit of the people– something few Americans would say about our own government, and with good reason.

    France doesn’t mine uranium domestically (it buys abroad) and so avoids the environmental issues with uranium mines at home. It also recycles a good portion of its nuclear waste– but relies on burial to dispose of the rest. As an example of how nuclear power COULD be done, it’s probably the best, but still not perfect. I for one would never put that level of trust in the U.S. government.

  5. John Couzin Wed, Nov 21, 2007 at 1:26 pm #

    Everything made by man gets old and breaks down, planes fall out of the sky, trains leave the rails, mines explode and ships sink. All dreadful “accidents” but don’t linger for generations. Nuclear plants likewise are human constructions and run by humans and when they go wrong we have, Three mile Island, Chernobyl and Sellafield in the UK, (the UK has now dislosed that there was a gross under estimating the numbers of cancers from the Sellafield leak) their damage lasts for generations with unbelievable suffering. The cost of “decommisioning” the Dounreay nuclear plant in Scotland is now estimated to be £3.6 billion and rising and still at the discussion stage with no real plan on how to do it. Nuclear is neither clean nor cheap when you count in the mining, construction and then the decommisioning. There are so many alternatives but it requires a revolution of consciousness, a large step outside the box of modern corporate capitalism.

  6. Jeff Dulin Mon, Apr 14, 2008 at 11:49 pm #

    It might be noted, that when the Peoples Paradice of the Soviet Union fell appart due to it’s ineptitude and socialist stupidity, the RUSSIAN NAVY SUNK A WHOLE BUNCH OF NUCLEAR SUBS WITH REACTORS INTACT IN THE NORTH SEA! Do you think this MIGHT be the source of the problems you are currently having on your beaches?! Hummm? Or are you simply one of the “lets blame America first” group?

    I’m so damn mad at GW Bush for the fact that that fat head failed to get even ONE nuke site lisenced, much less built! WE still don’t have an energy policy and even FRANCE is ahead of us in this area. That is nuts!All we’ve got is a bunch of over paid bureaucrats called the ENERGY DEPARTMENT and after 30 years, they’ve yet to discover their 1st Quart of Oil! Canada has a already producing Oil-Sands project, our bunch in Waasshington D.C.,… is still looking into it. My God!

    We need to let companies like GE and EXCELON get this process going and start building some sort of STANDARDIZED NUKE PLANT in the same manner the Frogs did. They proved it works and if they can do it,… so can we!