Nuclear power: friend or foe?
The debate for and against nuclear energy has been continuing and vigorous. It is a subject that people tend to have a view about, for nuclear energy is not simply an issue about rational choice of an energy option; it also arouses ethical choices based on opposing values. The debate has ebbed and flowed over the years, influenced by the prevailing discourses. During the early years, the era of the discourse of trust in technology, nuclear energy was regarded favourably and opposing views were largely absent. Later on, as fears about the risks from nuclear energy grew so too did opposition, contributing to a more defensive position by pro-nuclear interests. For a while it appeared that an uneasy consensus was emerging on the issue of radioactive waste management, but positions on the issue of nuclear energy remained entrenched. With the so-called ‘nuclear renaissance’ gathering momentum in recent years, nuclear advocates, backed by governments, have gained in confidence while opponents have resorted, once again, to mobilising against further expansion of nuclear energy.
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