Bust the Nuclear Myth: Nuclear power is not green energy.
Carbon production happens all along the nuclear fuel chain!
- MINING – Uranium and thorium
- MILLING – Transportation to millworks, converting ore to “yellowcake” uranium
- CONVERSION – Construction of the uranium conversion facility, transportation of “yellowcake”, conversion to UF6
- ENRICHMENT – Construction of the uranium enrichment facility and the cylinders used to transport UF6, transportation of UF6 to the enrichment facility, enrichment. The Paducah, KY plant uses 3,040 megawatts of coal energy at peak power.
- FUEL PELLETS – Formation & transportation of uranium fuel pellets
- NUCLEAR POWER PLANT CONSTRUCTION – Takes years and uses heavy construction equipment. Steel and concrete production are carbon-intensive.
- SUPPORTING INFRASTRUCTURE OF NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS – Construction of roads, transmission lines, barge canals
- GENERATORS – Heavy-duty diesel generators run the cooling system during routine maintenance, refueling, other normal shut downs, SCRAMs, and power outages
- WASTE STORAGE – Building radioactive waste storage facilities and storage containers. Transportation of radioactive waste, sometimes across the country or the ocean.
- WASTE PROCESSING – Building reprocessing plant, transportation of radioactive waste, reprocessing, building storage for the remaining radioactive waste
- WASTE INCINERATION – Building radioactive waste incineration facilities, transporting the waste to the incineration facility, incineration
- WASTE VITRIFICATION – Building vitrification plants, transporting waste to the plant, vitrifying the waste involves heating the materials to very high temperatures
- MONITORING OF RADIOACTIVE WASTE – Carbon pollution generated by monitoring and guarding the radioactive waste for eternity
- DECOMISSIONING AND DECONTAMINATION – Nuclear power plants, other reactors, enrichment facilities, and other support infrastructure
- ACCIDENTS – Mitigation and clean-up efforts have a huge carbon footprint
- DAMAGED REACTORS AND ACCIDENTS – Building sarcophagus structures, monitoring, securing and periodically re-entombing failed nuclear power plants for eternity