intro_to_geo_26 - Energy resources cont. Nuclear power The...

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Energy resources cont. Nuclear power The Good Produces huge amounts of energy Has a minimal environmental impact The Bad Generates small volumes of highly radioactive wastes Wastes will remain poisonous for 100s of thousands of years The Ugly Accidents at fission reactors may spread radioactivity Fission reactors may be sources of fissionable materials for terrorists Drawbacks of nuclear energy The possibility of meltdown (fuel becoming too hot and melting through some of the architecture of the power plant), as occurred at Chernobyl in the Ukraine, and the difficulties associated with nuclear waste are the primary drawbacks of nuclear energy Waste must be disposed of in a way that will ensure that radioactive isotopes will not be carried by surrounding groundwater Geothermal energy Natural Heat from the Earth No greenhouse gases or air pollution Limited development potential A very large resource, but not easy to use, especially in commercial quantities Several different types based on heat flow High heat flow areas Low heat flow areas
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intro_to_geo_26 - Energy resources cont. Nuclear power The...

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