How Does Using Nuclear Energy Harm The Environment?

In today`s world, wherein everything is run on energy, we need a good replacement for the traditional charcoal factories which provide power as they are scarce and can’t keep up with the increasing demand by the people. Nuclear energy is considered one of the best replacements for our energy problems and has many important advantages as well. Nuclear energy has been adapted into many of the companies as a replacement and has produced very good results in a short span of time. This has led to quite upstir in the energy industry however it is to be noted that nuclear energy has grave side issues as well.

How Nuclear Energy Can Harm The Environment?

Nuclear energy can harm the environment
  • Reduction in carbon dioxide The main advantage of nuclear plants is said that they will emit very less carbon dioxide which is quite true, but the main issue is carbon dioxide is released in high quantities while building the nuclear plant. Uranium the nuclear element which is used in nuclear plants releases a lot of carbon dioxide while mining. Also, the transportation of the nuclear elements also results in high amounts of carbon dioxide emission.
  • Low level Radiation issues Nuclear power plants constantly emit low level of radiation. Although experiencing it once or twice won’t cause humans any issues, but prolonged exposure can lead to cancer and other deadly diseases. The people staying near nuclear power plant have been seeing many changes in their day to day life because of this constant low level radiation. This can also lead to change in the DNA structure of a person and lower immunity as well. Many scientists are also conducting various studies to see if the low level of radiation has any effect on the environment around the plant.
  • Radioactive waste materials Radioactive waste are a huge issue to humankind. Currently all the radio active waste that are formed in the energy synthesis program are stored in the plant itself. However, over the course of time this will be a lot and would need to be shifted some place else. The main issue while transporting the radioactive waste is that if there is any spillage it could destroy the whole area surrounding it causing irreplicable damages. Many options are to bury the nuclear waste in a sealed contained but if this gets leaked and the waste makes it to the underwater ground table then it will also lead to water contamination as well which will affect the human life to a great extent.
  • Cooling systems used in power plant The nuclear plant needs water for their cooling system, and this is taken from the ocean. Many fishes are also taken in with the water and they get stuck in the system and are eventually killed. The water that has been used in the cooling system is not spoilt but is returned to the ocean at least 25 degrees hotter than when it was taken from there. This causes an imbalance in the aquatic species in that area.
  • Nuclear Plant accidents Nuclear require have ultra-security and complex machineries. These need to be operated by very skilled people and there cannot be a margin of error. The nuclear reactor needs to be very well maintained. In 2011 with the tsunami followed by the earthquake in Japan made the worst nuclear accident in the history and it took them several years to get out of it. 
  • Terrorism Terrorism is always a concern in every field. However, if the terrorist gets their hands on a nuclear product or the factory itself, it will cause very high risk to all the people involved in that country or for a very large area itself. The nuclear plant needs to be very well guarded 24*7 by armed forces as this is a national security concern.

Conclusion:

Although nuclear energy has many good uses and will be a lot less cheap going forward, there are many environmental hazards as well for the same. We would need to find ways in order to make this work without polluting our environment more and make it more secure for ourselves for the future.

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