Thursday, July 24, 2008

The burden of nuclear waste

What you think An ancient analogy

The burden of nuclear waste

I recently came upon an interesting fact: If one of the pyramids in Egypt had been built to store radioactive waste from a nuclear power plant of that age, the pharaohs would have enjoyed about 30 years of "low cost" electricity.

We, on the other hand, would still be guarding this disposal site and would have to continue guarding it for another 25,000 years, while receiving no benefit from it whatsoever.

This immediately brought to mind three questions:

*What is the morality of unduly burdening others, without their consent, even when you have long ceased to exist?

*What is the cost of guarding nuclear waste for 30,000 years?

*Has this cost been calculated into the estimates for the new Florida nuclear power plants as reserves to be collected and passed on to future civilizations?


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