Nuclear power is less carbon intensive than fossil fuels but that does not mean it emits zero carbon into the atmosphere.
Nuclear power has more than just a little greenhouse gas attached to it, when mining uranium ore, refining and enriching fuel, building the plant, and operating it are included. A big 1,250 megawatt plant produces the equivalent of 250,000 tons of carbon dioxide a year during its life.
That’s still much less than coal-fired power plants and natural-gas turbines. It even does better than solar power and small-scale hydro projects. However, the gap with solar is closing and emissions from manufacturing photovoltaic panels are now on par with nuclear, a new study funded by the US Energy Department finds.
No, because the waste product — radioactive waste material or nuclear waste — cannot be stored in a earth-friendly way without costing us tons of money and energy (for building concrete leak-proof storage facilities AKA nuclear waste dumps)… It is more green than other sources (and might be a short term option to limit carbon emissions but still produce the tremendous amount of energy we consume)… but in the long run it will lead to environmental problems (which will be ever piling up), and therefore, it can not be considered green…
More basically, the real and potential threat that nuclear power poses to the environment and human health outweighs any and all of its real and potential benefits. Humans simply are too flawed a species to effectively and wisely oversee such a powerful force. This is why many of the scientists who worked on the Manhattan Project looked on their achievment (the bomb’s successful wartime detonation in Japan) as a Pyrrhic victory, a “fatal miracle,” in the words of Gary Wills. The cleverness to invent such a force does not prove our capability in handling it. So, if by green you mean sustainable and involving no existential threat to every species and organism of life on earth, no.
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