Nuclear reactors do not produce energy

In a lengthy article David Swanson, who worked with Dennis Kucinich on his 2004 campaign, summarizes one of the key findings of the International Forum on Globalization report:

The energy put into mining, processing, and shipping uranium, plant construction, operation, and decommissioning is roughly equal to the energy a nuclear plant can produce in its lifetime. In other words, nuclear energy does not add any net energy.

Not counted in that calculation is the energy needed to store nuclear waste for hundreds of thousands of years.

Also not counted is any mitigation of the relatively routine damage done to the environment, including human health, at each stage of the process.


The article reports that one of the primary products of the nuclear reactor is plutonium, the preferred element for weapons.  It all started with Eisenhower’s Atoms for Peace Program, in which a civilian cover was developed for the weapons industry.

The United States then launched an “Atoms for Peace” program that supplied equipment and information to schools, hospitals, and research institutions within the U.S. and throughout the world. The first nuclear reactors in Iran and Pakistan were built under the program by American Machine and Foundry.

Today some are concerned that Iran is working on nuclear reactors and that Pakistan has developed nuclear reactors.   How many know that it was the US that introduced these countries to this technology?

The nuclear reactors are dirty, expensive, and dangerous.  They are a relic of the cold war.  According to the recent head of the NRC they are not safe and they should be shut down.

What are we waiting for?

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