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14 Comments

  1. Did I hear Uranium mining ?

    Well, don’t be surprised if the Athabasca Basin one day becomes the 21st century Saudi Arabia. This will happen.

    And don’t blamed Nevada for refusing to store all of this valuable, rich second hand fuel and miss on the opportunity to be the Saudi Arabia for Gen IV nuclear fuels. You can blame that on both malice and stupidity.

  2. I read with amusement that a group of religious leaders came out in opposition to uranium mining, citing ‘health effects’ as a reason (african american workers are supposedly more vulnerable to radiation – something i highly doubt). According to that way of thinking, we have demonstrated that all human activity and undertaking is unacceptable due to possible health effects.

    It would be easy to say that we should give up on uranium mining and nuclear energy, however the problems that humanity are facing are complicated. The solution to these problems are often the least palatable, or least accepted. Should Virginia pass up this wonderful opportunity they will be doing current and future generations a great disservice. I hope common sense and reason prevails.

  3. @ Josh,

    The Dalai Lama is supporting nuclear power to give dignity to the poorest populations on the planet.

    Now that is in line with spirituality and science.

    1. @ Daniel

      This has come as a bit of a shock to many of his followers. His philosophy seems to be in line with scientists such as Hans A Bethe; renouncing weapons whilst favouring civilian use and recognising limitations regarding the alternatives.

  4. I wonder if the “steep hurdles” rhetoric would be taken seriously if someone did a short video documentary of in-situ leach mining for uranium.  A bunch of wells, some pumps and ion-exchange tanks would take all the wind out of those sails.

    1. Even with simple in situ leaching, people are going to make a fuss out of the power of hydrogen. They’ll claim that creating battery acid wells are bad for the ground water table (even in places where there’s no connection to water tables at all).

      Perhaps we can get good PR by neutralizing the alkaline leach variant with injected CO2.

  5. Rod, you’re more than an inspiration as a nuclear advocate, you’re just a general inspiration. I was going to skip my afternoon cross fit workout, now I’m looking forward to it! Great article.

    There is a rather remarkable Aboriginal social movement occurring in Canada right now, and uranium mining, pro and con, is on the radar. The fact that there are any pro voices at all proves that this is a winnable issue (in at least some places, all politics being local of course). If these kids knew the quantitative, orders-of-magnitude difference between land effects of uranium extraction versus, say, anything in the oil and gas industry, they might support uranium more.

    Steve

    1. Priceless. I have shamefully embedded that graphic as today’s Friday Funny. Thanks, Brian.

      BTW – wouldn’t you know that the first snowfall of the year came at the same time I was supposed to be on the road to Richmond for an ANS dinner?

    2. Ah, you’re the culprit.  I didn’t take Rod for an XKCD fan… though maybe he’s going to be one henceforth.

  6. @ Brain Mays

    No apology required – that scale is indeed impressive. So-called renewable energies have a poor flux density, and fossil fuels aren’t much better when compared to fission processes. This is an important, yet often overlooked, consideration when assessing our energy options. Central to the development of poorer countries is the increased flux density of their industrial capability. This enables development and environmental stewardship.

  7. Sorry I meant ‘Brian’ although you are a Brain also. I enjoy reading you comments and the way you put the anti-nukes in their place. Please don’t stop.

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