One of the great idiocies of the environmentalism of our time is the opposition to nuclear power. No, not because nuclear is lovely, or advanced, or that technological white heat. Rather, because we are also told that the biggest problem we face is global warming, Hey, it’s even a climate emergency these days. Actually, it isn’t, it’s at worst a chronic problem we can manage but hey, who wants to stand in the way of the milenarianism bus? Nuclear provides nice and lovely baseload electricity without much in the way of carbon emissions. It’s thus great at beating the climate change problem. And if that is the problem we must, must, solve then we should have nuclear.
Which is exactly what the Germans haven’t done. They’re trying – having spent well over a trillion so far – to decarbonise the electricity supply. At the same time as they phase out nuclear. Meaning that actually their emissions are rising as they burn more coal. This is not sensible within the parameters they themselves have set. So, obviously, they should change:
Angela Merkel’s government is facing growing calls from business leaders to postpone plans to phase out nuclear power in Germany in order to protect the environment. The chief executive of Volkswagen and the chairman Continental AG, a leading car parts manufacturer, are among those to speak out in recent weeks. They have seized on the climate movement of 2019 as an opportunity to argue in favour of nuclear energy, and warn shutting down Germany’s last reactors could leave the country reliant on highly pollutant brown coal. Mrs Merkel pledged to shut down all of Germany’s nuclear reactors by 2022 in the wake of a public outcry following the 2011 Fukushima disaster in Japan. But critics say it was too ambitious to switch to renewable energy and phase out nuclear power at the same time. With renewables unable to make up the shortfall, Germany has been forced to turn to coal.
Oh, sure, it’s possible to insist that everyone should just use less power. Degrade the lifestyle so that coal needn’t be used. Because, you know, Gaia. So therefore we can get rid of nuclear and not increase emissions if only …..if only humans weren’t humans that is. Because reality is that people aren’t going to downgrade life. Which is why the plan to reduce emissions is increasing coal use.
The answer is to change the decision to phase out nuclear. After all, if climate change really is the Big Thing then why the hell wouldn’t you use nuclear?