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  1. #11
    Queen hunter Virtual ghost's Avatar
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    Is any of you familiar with the concept of "Peak Uranium" ?

  2. #12
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Antisocial one View Post
    Is any of you familiar with the concept of "Peak Uranium" ?
    Yes, and it only supports what I already said.
    The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Neither love without knowledge, nor knowledge without love can produce a good life. - Bertrand Russell
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  3. #13
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    I meant Athenian who said a few days ago that Americans (and probably the entire West) should drastically cut down on their life style. Not you, Entropie.

    I agree that the problem, even more than the safety of the plants, is the "disposal" (a.k.a didge everything into a hole in the ground and hope for the best). From what I have heard, the managing company of the plant in Fikushima was corrupt, knee deep in scandals and had actually faked documents (they were going to shut the plant down in a month or so). That is a reminder that the human factor must not be forgotten either.

    The practical view is connected to the bigger picture. If you want to discuss the future of nuclear energy, you have to consider global economic developement and neccessary changes in behavior that will likely require a drastic cultural change....because it is interconnected.

    Athenian suggests staying on nuclear energy because fossils are no option. She didn't mention alternative energies, but I hope we are on the same page about the need for an expansion of alternative energies asap. Last year I overheard a conversation between two German managers, one of them had recently been to Washington and claimed that the Obama administration would put this high up on the agenda and make it for this presidency what sending a man to the moon was for Kennedy. He claimed that Europeans would very soon be suprised at how America would make a giant leap forward in green technology and green industry. Let's just say, I haven't heard much about it so far.

    As for the transition: We seem to agree that it is neccessary, the question is only how fast and how drastic it will be. That depends on how fast we can open up new sources and adapt our technologies. The longer it takes the more we will need to keep the nuclear needle in our vein. That, as has already been mentioned, is connected both to short term and long term safety risks. The problem is that, at least in parts of Europe, more and more plants are dangerously old and no longer safe. Should they be shut down? I would say yes. Should new ones be constructed? I'd seriously prefer not to. But if we want to transition fast, we need to take the developement of alternative energies much more serious than we have so far.
    Well, my main concern, is that I don't think renewable energies are realistically capable of supporting more than a small percentage of our current energy needs. Even if we started planning TODAY, we would not be able to reduce consumption by a large enough amount to not need nuclear and fossil fuels for the next 20 years.

    We would really have to limit the use of electricity to government, military, and research, and cut everyone else off except for a few manufactured goods and battery-powered devices. Even then, I'm not sure that we could get by with renewables.

    Basically, I do see that we will eventually need to rely on renewable energy, but I believe that when that day comes, the majority of people will not be able to have electricity anymore. Renewable energy just doesn't generate a lot of power, and I don't see how it can.

    Do you see more potential in it than I do?

    Quote Originally Posted by entropie View Post
    I've got to run now so I'll read up on you later.

    You now my problem is, I am too old by now to still debate nuclear energy on a classroom or university level. I am in positions of resonsibility now and have to make decisions regarding this topic. And I have made my decision. I as an engineer was long not contra nuclear energy but the more I gave it thoughts the more I came to the result that I will not be responsible for this and later look my son into the eyes who asks me why I have polluted the planet.

    No nuclear energy may be no alternative but only nuclear energy is the worst alternative and I dont really want to be responsible for that.

    Keep on posting your opinions, I'll be back tomorrow
    That's a horrible attitude, IMO. You're making your decision entirely on the basis of environmentalist concerns, and not thinking about the other, more immediate implications of it. By not choosing nuclear energy, you are choosing fossil fuels.

    You're basically making a choice that allows you to avoid blame, for personal reasons, rather than one that actually solves a problem. And you call yourself an engineer?

  4. #14
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    KITEGEN for renewable energies. Too few people know about this. Research has shown that energy output can sustain current consumption if wind power is exploited through high-altitude rotating kites rather than turbines, and now it's being implemented (there's one project in the US, another in Italy).
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  5. #15
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Yes, I do see more potential in it than you do. Also, 20 years is nothing. If you think we can be 100% renewable in 20 years time, that would be great news indeed!

    Much of this is a question of technology. But the best sources will reach their limit if our consumption keeps growing, ergo consumption is key.
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  6. #16
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    Yes, I do see more potential in it than you do. Also, 20 years is nothing. If you think we can be 100% renewable in 20 years time, that would be great news indeed!
    That figure was, of course, provided that governments insist on it, and everyone works towards it diligently, despite the fact that we will have to give up most of our modern conveniences as we go along.

    Of course, if you see more potential in it, you might believe that it will eventually generate enough energy that we won't have to limit the use of energy to research and government/military.

    Much of this is a question of technology. But the best sources will reach their limit if our consumption keeps growing, ergo consumption is key.
    I think that in the final analysis, the 20th century will be viewed as the golden age of humanity, but an unsustainable one, and we will have to revert to 19th century technology in many respects. It's really only a question of when and how fast.

    Consumption is a problem that will just keep growing with population. If we could control population, we might be able to stretch out our energy supply... but we can't, and thus we'll just have to cut off energy to most of the population.

  7. #17
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    So you think a scenario where there is only enough energy for research and government (don't know why you thinki renewable energy would only be enough for that) and most people are cut off by force is more likely than reduction of industrial growth through social and political means and reduction of population growth through that or natural means (i.e. epidemics, etc, don't know if anybody watched the entire 8 parts of the lecture) combined with a social, political and industrial effort to push for the developement of alternative energy sources? That sounds like a Hollywood movie scenario to me, not like a realistic assessment of the next few decades. I am not trying to ridicule your fears, I only doubt your predictions are realistic.
    The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Neither love without knowledge, nor knowledge without love can produce a good life. - Bertrand Russell
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  8. #18
    resonance entropie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    That's a horrible attitude, IMO. You're making your decision entirely on the basis of environmentalist concerns, and not thinking about the other, more immediate implications of it. By not choosing nuclear energy, you are choosing fossil fuels.

    You're basically making a choice that allows you to avoid blame, for personal reasons, rather than one that actually solves a problem. And you call yourself an engineer?
    Only 11 % of the german energy dependancy is to nuclear power. In America it is around 20% I believe. The majority is already from coal or gas. Using up all coal is much wiser for me than to pollute the planet with nuclear waste. please dont insult my intelligence or my person or I'll report you to a mod.
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  9. #19
    Cheeseburgers freeeekyyy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by entropie View Post
    Only 11 % of the german energy dependancy is to nuclear power. In America it is around 20% I believe. The majority is already from coal or gas. Using up all coal is much wiser for me than to pollute the planet with nuclear waste. please dont insult my intelligence or my person or I'll report you to a mod.
    Nuclear waste is much less polluting than coal fumes. You pretty much just bury it in a hole, avoid the area and you don't have to worry about it. Coal fumes on the other hand, well, I don't think it takes much to tell why that's bad. Pollution is one of the few legitimate environmental concerns, yet environmentalists hardly even talk about it anymore.
    You lose.

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  10. #20
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by entropie View Post
    Only 11 % of the german energy dependancy is to nuclear power. In America it is around 20% I believe. The majority is already from coal or gas. Using up all coal is much wiser for me than to pollute the planet with nuclear waste. please dont insult my intelligence or my person or I'll report you to a mod.
    Well, if that's how you see it, then I suppose it makes sense. Sorry if I misunderstood earlier.

    I don't feel that I insulted your intelligence or your person, at least not intentionally... please don't report me. I'll shut up. It's none of my business, anyway. I was disappointed with the methods you used to make your decision, but I don't feel that my disappointment should constitute an insult rather than a difference of opinion.

    I don't consider your way of making decisions wrong, I just don't understand it.

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