Letter: No alternative to nuclear power

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Sir: Sarah Burton's statement that cleaner, less expensive solutions than nuclear power are at our fingertips, paints a misleading picture (letter, 10 October). The internationally accepted predicted rise in energy demand over the next 30 years shows an increase from 8.8 billion tons of oil- equivalent in 1990 to 17 billion tons of oil-equivalent in 2020. It is difficult to imagine that energy savings, solar, wind and tidal energy can do more than nibble at the edges of this huge rise in demand.

With estimated fossil fuel reserves running at 45 years for oil, 65 years for gas and 230 years for coal at current rates of demand, then the nuclear option, far from being the lesser of two evils, is the only feasible solution to future energy demands.

This does not detract from the environmental issues surrounding nuclear power generation, but let us encourage our top scientists and engineers to address these issues, rather than deny the necessity for nuclear power.

Yours sincerely,




11 October