At a recent talk at the TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) conference in Long Beach, California, billionare Microsoft founder Bill Gates gave a powerful talk in which he outlined his belief in the need for reducing the world’s carbon emissions to zero. He proposes we do this by developing carbon-neutral energy sources such as nuclear, solar, wind and thermal power. Personally, Gates is funding an interesting initative called TerraPower, which is a form of nuclear power that uses Uranium-238 as opposed to conventional fuel that uses Uranium-239. TerraPower is different than traditional nuclear power because it burns not only the fuel, but also the waste, eliminating the disposal problem from traditional nuclear power, and theoretically even nuclear waste left over from today’s reactors can be used as fuel for a TerraPower system. Gates’s notion is exotic but it does have potential, and if Gates is putting his own money on the line for it, there may indeed be some development. You can see Gates’s talk on video; it’s the second link I’m posting under this article.
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