Nuclear power has been labouring under the stigma of events from a bygone era.
Nuclear power has been labouring under the stigma of events from a bygone era. EDF HO

It's time Gympie embraced the nuclear option

EVERYONE has a bogeyman story.

Whether it's a cold hand reaching from under the bed, a face looking out of the closet, or the threat of Billy Ray Cyrus singing on the radio, everyone has something extremely unlikely but truly terrifying to fear.

And it's the story of nuclear power.

It's easy to get lost in the worry of the nuke, or the disasters of Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima.

And in doing so overlook that - outside recent developments in nut case countries - the last use of an A-bomb was in 1945, and two of those later disasters were more than 30 years ago.

 

The mushroom cloud of an atom bomb rises among abandoned ships in Bikini lagoon on July 1, 1946 after the bomb was dropped from the Super Fortress
The fallout from a nuclear blast is terrifying - but aside from underground tests in nut case countries, it hasn't been seen in more than 60 years. Contributed

RELATED

* Gympie region flagged as site for nuclear power plant

* Students strike for climate in Memorial Park this morning

The last was caused by natural disaster. The world, and technology, has moved on significantly since the 1980s for the world's 451 active nuclear plants.

Since May headlines have been celebrating fossil fuels accounting for less than half of the UK's energy needs for the first time. But of the UK's "clean energy" replacing fossil fuels, nuclear power is almost half.

 

Carbon Dioxide
Carbon Dioxide

In France, 75 per cent of power is nuclear. Until 2011, one quarter of Germany's power was nuclear. That's what's been replaced by renewable, not No.1 enemy coal.

To be clear: nuclear shouldn't be considered the endgame of the climate challenge. It may not be the best answer.

But want to drop carbon emissions as fast as possible? Then it's got to be part of the discussion at least, free from the fearmongering of a bygone era.