What Are The Pros And Cons Of Using Fossil Fuel

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We as humans are expending our fossil fuels at an alarming rate. By 2088 we will have completely run out of options for using fossil fuels for electricity (The End of Fossil Fuels). As the resources slowly diminish, people are looking for an alternative source to create electricity for both heat and light. This seems to be particularly true in the United States, where the government wants to not rely on the petroleum from countries in the Middle East. The idea is good, however the focus is less of the environment and more on the power, money, and dominance associated with it. For over 60 years humans have known about the power of splitting the nucleus of an atom. The making of the atomic bomb during World War II has opened our eyes to the sheer …show more content…
Today, there are 109 nuclear power plants in the United States which contribute roughly 20% of the power used in the United States (Nuclear Energy).These power plants are scattered all around the nation. They mostly sprung up after creating the “Manhattan Project”. After the bombing of Japan, the researchers realized the power of the fission and fusion reactors. Therefore they then turned this destructive power into huge plants generating "clean and cheap” electricity for the country. It was called progress by many. However, this progress brought along with it a lot of danger, such as sickness, mutations, cancer and eventually death to those exposed to high levels of radiation. This so called danger is not something to worry about. According to Allison Wade, a researcher of nuclear and medical physicist at the University of Oxford. She reports that out of the original inhabitants of the two cities bombed by U.S forces about 66 percent of the population survived until 1950, and when their individual health records have been extensively studied. She found that by 2000, 7.9 percent of them had died of cancer, compared with 7.5 percent expected from rates found in similar Japanese cities over the same period. …show more content…
Nuclear reactors use less fuel than a fossil-fuel plant to generate the same amount of energy a fossil-fuel plant generates. As well as, no pollutants are put into the air. The fissioning of 1 metric ton of uranium fuel makes roughly the same amount of energy as burning 3 million metric tons of coal or 12 million barrels of oil. Also, unlike fossil fuels, Uranium does not produce any type of pollutants that would potentially be put into the air. Which in turn would lower the overall carbon footprint of the world. (World Book Encyclopedia, 1996). In fact only one Coke can sized amount of nuclear waste is what a normal person would use in their life if it were all nuclear. In contrast, coal waste is massive about 68 tons of solid waste of carbon is what the average person would put out over a lifetime if we only used coal for electricity. The waste from the nuclear power source is not being throw out excessively either. Nuclear waste goes into dry cask storage, where it is kept in a small area and monitored. A coal burning plant at the same time burns 3 million tons of fuel a year to produce 1-gigawatt of power and creates 7 million tons of CO2, all of which immediately goes into the atmosphere, where no one can control

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