Nuclear energy has become the excluded elephant in the room!

Nuclear energy has become the excluded elephant in the room!

Chronicle: The reluctance of an academic organization to address the topic of nuclear energy is academic cowardice!

  • Hogan Hongsit

    Supporter of nuclear energy and nature conservationist

Published: Published:


This is a discussion post. The post was written by an external contributor, and quality assured by Aftenbladet’s debate department. Opinions and analyzes are the author’s own.

Of the year Research days Sponsored by the Norwegian Research Council “Energy” as the main theme. It was one of the events CIENS PM Climate. It was good academic content, but it was also disappointing. Because the elephant – nuclear power – wasn’t even allowed in the room.

Sienz It is a collaborative organization of central research institutions in Norway on climate, nature and environment topics. The climate evening at Kulturhuset in Oslo on 26 September was titled: “Should nature give way to energy and climate?”

A number of specialist researchers have highlighted the problems that must be solved when we have to deal with both the climate crisis and the nature crisis at the same time: Do we then have to sacrifice nature in order to reach the goal of climate neutrality in 2050? Or the partial goal of reducing climate emissions by 55 percent in 2030, compared to 1990?

Destruction of nature

The conference was mostly good at identifying problems, but equally bad at solutions. The problem is also known before. We have long been killing life and species diversity on a massive scale by destroying valuable nature, with highways, cabins and other purposes. The damage has been violently accelerated by the unreasonable use of nature to produce energy in wind power plants.

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The latter was a bit of a problem. On the other hand, we heard presentations about the importance of meteorology in measuring the wind power of offshore wind, that energy can be extracted from food waste and gray water, that we should stop boring swamps, and that municipal processes related to land use decisions should be improved.

CIENS did not invite anyone to highlight the consequences of the fact that wind energy on Earth has already destroyed 600 square kilometers of valuable and now degraded nature. No one at the conference called for a halt to further wind energy construction on the land, not even Climate and Environment Minister Espen Barth Eide, who was present. Perhaps not so strangely, in 2022 he shared an openness to processing new licenses. As is known, Solberg’s government was under pressure to stop all license processing after the popular uprising in 2019.

the answer

What was really surprising was that the conference, whose main topic was whether we can get enough emissions-free energy without sacrificing more of nature, did not have any elements related to nuclear energy. The regulator knows, of course, that there is currently a very active discussion about nuclear energy in Norway.

Many billionaires are behind the company Norwegian nuclear energyFour municipalities have already concluded an agreement with the company to investigate nuclear energy.

Aside from SV, all political parties now have a national meeting resolution to evaluate nuclear energy in Norway because nuclear energy provides large amounts of emission-free energy with minimal use of nature.

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The two wind power plants ruled by the Supreme Court in Füssen provide 1.9 terawatt-hours of electricity, were built on 66 square kilometers of pristine nature, and have created a fair number of local jobs.

For comparison: one nuclear power plant of this type General Electric Hitachi BWRX-300 It produces 2.5 terawatt hours of electricity over an area equivalent to a global football field, with 75 permanent jobs. Each of these job types also provides two to three jobs “out of the gate.”

No wonder then that 40 municipalities have contacted Norsk Kjernekraft requesting information.

Åslaug Haga at NHO Renewable Norway Drivers, on the other hand, are clean the campaign Against nuclear power, which would mean a “hook in the door” for its members who want new concessions on wind energy.

The regulator knows all this, without inviting anyone to answer the logical question: Will nuclear power be able to produce emissions-free energy without destroying large areas of nature?

Safest and gentlest

Then everyone also knows that nuclear power is controversial and politically combustible. Among other things on the basis of the risks that nuclear energy can entail. But it has been a long time since the Chernobyl accident.

The European Union says I a report That nuclear energy is today the safest form of energy ever created, that nuclear energy provides the lowest land use, lowest material use, and lowest carbon dioxide emissions, that it is entirely possible to deal with hazardous waste, and that nuclear energy is at least as sustainable as the alternatives. This is why nuclear energy is included in the European Union Category.

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United Nations Organization United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe) He says on page 49 i a report Modern nuclear energy has:

  • Less negative impact on ecosystems (climate, nature and environment).
  • Less use of resources (minerals and metals).
  • Less negative impact on human health (including cancer).

Nuclear power plant It also provides, over the lifespan, up to 100 years, a lower average price for the electricity produced than that produced New wind energy On the ground.

It is clearly right to invest in increasing energy efficiency, and upgrading hydroelectric and solar power in buildings. If this is not enough, modern nuclear energy is a much better alternative to increased wind power.

It is very striking that the Minister of Climate and Environment did not even mention nuclear energy as a future possibility to save what remains of pristine nature. Especially since the national AP meeting was opened to evaluate this technology.

For an academic organization to evade raising the issue is academic cowardice!

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Hanisi Anenih

Hanisi Anenih

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