By Diana Roberts
Published on January 15, 2020 in the Greenfield Recorder
I was dismayed to read Joshua Goldstein’s suggestion that nuclear power is the better bet for replacing coal. “You should probably thank your lucky stars that you don’t live anywhere near the(se) 13 of the most radioactive places on the planet” (interestingengineering.com). Does that sound like nuclear power is a good bet? And what to do with the waste? All those spent fuel rods that get moved from one state to another because nobody wants to deal with containing them. Like any other pariah, do you want them in your back yard? The problem is that big oil, coal and nuclear invested conglomerates have not yet figured out how to make wind and solar power as profitable as what they have now. Meanwhile, they’re destroying our future and our planet.
Nuclear waste is made up of Plutonium-239, which has a half-life of 24,000 years. There’s also Strontium-90 and cesium-137 which have half-lives of about 30 years (half the radioactivity will decay in 30 years). Sweden and other countries have been drilling down into the center of the earth to contain their nuclear waste. What will that do to the future of the planet if it ever leaks out?
Clearly, I do not share Mr. Goldstein’s thoughts, and I hope those who read his interview in the Recorder will not take his “bright future” nuclear energy suggestions to heart without looking into what a lackluster future it will bring to our country and to the world.