Friday, July 10, 2009
Nuclear Power and Hot Weather
Nuclear power is supposedly just what the doctor ordered to combat global warming. Proponents tell us that we must vastly expand nuclear power because it does not emit carbon dioxide (which is of course untrue). But ironically, nuclear power itself is falling victim to global warming because of cooling problems. Indeed, that bastion of nuclear power, France, has been forced by hot weather to shut down some of its nuclear plants and import electricity from Britain. Of course proponents will claim that this problem can be solved by supplying plants with cooling towers. But that will further raise the already skyrocketing cost estimates for new nuclear plants, and the towers still need a supply of water. Is there any assurance of that in the hot and dry summer weather projected for the future?