[ RadSafe ] All the Energy We Will Need for Millennia

James Salsman jsalsman at gmail.com
Wed Oct 5 13:00:41 CDT 2011

> The Earth has all the fuel we need for millennia in the form of
> uranium and thorium

The problem is that the actual realized cost of nuclear power in the
U.S. proven to be between 25 and 30 cents per kilowatt hour:


We can argue whether the regulations and political opposition which
causes this are justified (and I have a feeling we probably will) but
according to a SLAC colloquium presentation earlier this year, nuclear
would be expected to kill ten times as many people as wind, primarily
because of issues involved with mining.  Meanwhile wind costs are the
lowest and falling, currently at 5-6 cents.

> and we don't have to ... kill birds with windmills

If the U.S. started synthesizing transportation fuel from nighttime
wind and stopped importing oil entirely, and derived all that fuel and
all electrical power from wind, that would only require turbines on 5%
of U.S. farm land:

You know what a dead bird is to a farmer? Free fertilizer. Even with
that exclusive wind power scenario, house cats would still kill more
birds, because the new larger multi-megawatt turbines turn slower and
so are only deadly at their smaller surface areas on the tips of the

As Jeff has pointed out, the danger to bats is a more pressing
concern, but I have yet to see any study which seriously suggests that
exclusive wind power in the U.S. would be a mortal threat to any bat
species, just that more study is needed on the subject.

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