Nuclear power is portrayed by the major media and by environmental activists as dangerous and perhaps even sinister. Wind power, on the other hand, is considered benign. But the track records of nuclear power and wind power present a different picture.
William Morrison of Des Moines is credited with building the first electric car in 1891. It was successful, except for two problems: the batteries were heavy and expensive, and it wouldn't go very far on a charge. In 2009 Ford and General Motors showed their new line of electric cars at the Detroit Auto Show. They were as pretty as you can make a vehicle. But they have two major problems: the batteries are heavy and expensive, and they don't go very far on a charge.
ITEM: On September 16, the House passed the Comprehensive American Energy Security and Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 6899). As described by CNN on the same day, the bill "could clear the way for more drilling in the United States, as the Democrats who control Congress yielded to pressure from Republicans on the issue."
In early March a sign in front of a Citgo station read Regular/Unleaded: $3.19 per gallon, and I told my companion, “That’s absurd! Why would anyone buy gas there?” We’d just left a “cut-rate” station where it cost “only” $2.98 per gallon.
A modern society such as that in the United States requires personal transportation — cargo trucks, planes, and cars — to make a market economy work. Any serious effort to move our country to mass transportation, such as trains and buses, for everyone and everything all the time — or even most of the time — would destroy not only our economy, but the American way of life.
A nuclear power plant is arguably the most extraordinary product of engineering and scientific know-how in the history of mankind. Once every 18 months or so, a truckload of metal is delivered to the nuclear plant. The metal is uranium, which has been processed to increase the proportion of the isotope known as Uranium-235. This fuel for the power plant is not dangerous and can be held in one’s hands without risk. Only a few decades ago, its primary use was to impart an orange color to ceramics such as Fiestaware.
In 1943, when Germany had virtually no sources of petroleum to fuel its Luftwaffe, U-boats, and Tiger tanks, its scientists (arguably among the best in the world at that time) didn’t turn to solar and wind power. Evil does not equate to naïveté. Hitler’s technical advisers turned to another energy source to keep their Wehrmacht running steadily for several years without petroleum. They used the Fischer-Tropsch process to convert coal into diesel fuel and employed the Bergius hydrogenation (or liquefaction) process to convert coal into aviation gasoline and high-quality truck and automobile gasoline.