By Michael H. Fox
Oxford University Press, 2014
Nuclear power may just be the most important solution to our search for clean, sustainable energy sources. Although wind and solar can contribute to our energy mix, we need a reliable source to meet large-scale energy demands and break our dependence on fossil fuels. However, most people are wary, if not downright afraid, of nuclear power. Given nuclear disasters such as Chernobyl and Fukushima, it’s not difficult to see why. In the wake of these events, fear has clouded the public’s understanding of the facts. It’s time to clear up those misconceptions and examine the science behind nuclear power, in order to determine what role it could and should play in our future.
In Why We Need Power: The Environmental Case, radiation biologist Michael H. Fox argues that nuclear power is essential to slowing down the impact of global warming. He examines the issue from every angle, relying on thirty-five years of research spent studying the biological effects of radiation. Fox begins with the problem, carefully laying out how our current energy uses and projections for the future will affect greenhouse gases and global warming. The book then evaluates each major energy source and demonstrates the limits of renewable energy sources, concluding that nuclear power is the best solution to our environmental crisis. Fox then delves into nuclear power, looking at the effects of radiation, the potential for nuclear accidents, and the best methods to dispose of nuclear waste. By systematically analyzing each aspect of the nuclear issue, Fox clarifies which concerns have a scientific basis and which remain unsupported. His in-depth exploration of the facts persuasively demonstrates that nuclear power is critical to reducing the effects of energy production on the global climate.
Written in an engaging and accessible style, Why We Need Nuclear Power is an invaluable resource for both general readers and scientists interested in the facts behind nuclear energy.