Sunday, February 10, 2008

Our never ending work to destroy the planet

I have never been a strong supporter of nuclear energy production as we have never found an acceptable way to deal with the radioactive waste. The waste that we have already created will contaminate this planet and all life on it long after the human population is gone.  This will be our most permanent legacy.

Lately, I have been softening on the idea after comparison with the very dangerous coal fired power plants and their impact on global warming. Global warming, if unchecked, will also have a dramatic impact on the remaining life of the planet. Which is worse, causing thousands of species to go extinct as a result of global warming, or saving species in the short term, only to kill them off later with radioactive waste? Of course, the right answer is neither, but we need to buy some time to solve the problem. Is nuclear energy the answer? No.  There are many other technologies available if we would only invest as much in them as we do into nuclear and other dirty solutions.

I learned this weekend that the Forest Service has approved uranium exploration in the Challis national forest. - Forest Service OKs Harden Creek uranium exploration By Todd Adams. Challis Messenger. These potential sites border the largest wilderness area in the US outside of Alaska - the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness. They sit just above an active spawning ground for the endangered Chinook Salmon. A beautiful stretch of river where Osprey fish, Bald Eagles fly, NightHawks swoop for insects, and wolves and coyotes howl. It is spectacular country that is as close to nature as we have left. It has now been prostitutionalized for a greedy and careless country. They claim that there will be no environmental impacts, which by any stretch is a lie. In addition, the no environmental impacts statement was only made in reference to the exploration, not the eventual mining if they actually find uranium.

When will we move beyond irreversible exploitation of the planet to a more sustainable existence?

Thanks to Ralph Maughan’s Wildlife News for the story link and the map.

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