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Energy Source

Essay by   •  March 23, 2012  •  Essay  •  604 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,551 Views

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Running head: Energy

Energy Source

There are pros and cons to hydropower and nuclear power. The pros to hydropower are that it is the cheapest way to generate electricity and the energy source flowing water is free. It's a clean source that is renewable by snow and rainfall. One of the downfalls is that it may disrupt or destroy or disrupt wildlife and other natural resources. Some fish, like salmon, may be prevented from swimming upstream to spawn. (National Geographic Society, 1996-2012)

A pro to nuclear power is they need little need little fuel, so they are less vulnerable to shortages. The Fukushima Daiichi disaster in March of 2011 was followed by a major earthquake. A tsunami disabled the power and cooling of three Fukushima Daiichi reactors, causing a nuclear accident. The disaster was rated a seven on the INES scale, due to high radioactive releases in the first few days. Reactor one melted almost completely in the first 16 hours after the disaster. The second major part of the fuel rods in reactor No. 2 may have melted and fallen to the bottom of the pressure vessel 101 hours. The same thing happened within the first 60 hours at reactor No. 3. CNN, (articles.cnn.com) June 06, 2011

The Chernobyl Accident of 1986 was a result of a flawed reactor design that was operated with personnel that were not trained properly. The accident killed 30 operators and fireman within three months and several deaths that occurred later. One person was killed immediately and a second died in the hospital soon after as a result of injuries. Others died between 1987 and 2004 but their deaths could not necessarily be attributed to radiation exposure.

The two accidents can be looked at from both sides of the spectrum. They can be looked at as a benefit and a risk. The first accident was due to a natural disaster, which we can't predict or really plan for. The plan can include a series of things that can be done in the case of a natural disaster. The bad part about a plan like that is that it's not like a fire drill and the plan can be tested weekly or even monthly. The only thing that can be done is either the hope that it won't happen or the hope that if it does happen the counter measures can stand up to the disaster.

The other accident was entirely based on the fact that a person or group of people that should not have been operating the equipment was allowed to do so. The inadequate lack of in this case came at a much too high cost. The loss of life is something that can't be replaced. The argument that nuclear power should not be used as a source of energy, in my opinion is not a very strong one. Yes both accidents had a loss of life, but they were from two very different sources.

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