Nuclear Accidents and All, Coal Is By Far the Deadliest Energy Source

Energy Death RateBen Jervey writes on GOOD:

Last week, Nicola wrote about an interactive chart that compared the number of deaths per terawatt-hour that could be attributed to a few major sources of energy. Yesterday, Seth Godin did the world a service by simplifying that rather complicated chart.

This is a “non-exaggerated but simple version” of the original deaths/TWh statistics. Perhaps the most stunning, simple takeaway:

For every person killed by nuclear power generation, 4,000 die due to coal, adjusted for the same amount of power produced.

Godin also mentions this incredibly important point, which cannot be driven home hard enough:

Not included in this chart are deaths due to global political instability involving oil fields, deaths from coastal flooding and deaths due to environmental impacts yet unmeasured, all of which skew it even more if you think about it.

So, actually, it’s even worse. As everyone debates the costs and benefits, the pros and cons, and the feasibility of various energy sources as we try to power our future, we should all remember: coal is dangerous, dirty, and not as “cheap” as advertised.

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  • Rageplug

    For this to be even remotely believable, the original chart needs to list it’s sources (which it does not). What’s the time frame we are looking at here? If we are talking about coal vs. nuke since the start of the Industrial Revolution, then yes, I am very much inclined to believe the veracity of this comparison.

    If we are talking about, say, the last ten years then I think it’s time to turn on the bullshit detector.

    Coal is certainly not a perfect energy source, but it’s not the dirty beast it once was. Particulate pollution from coal plants has been greatly reduced, and as far as CO2 goes, AGW is a theory (not saying it is or isn’t true) so to desire to pump up the death count because of it is hardly good science.

    The big question is: What can meet our current energy needs? The answer (so far) is coal, then oil, then natural gas, then nuke. We use a lot of power and coal delivers (not without negatives) but to champion nukes because of green dogma is wrong-headed.

    I hope that nukes can be made safe, but Fukushima is melting down. People are dying and will continue to die. And there will be birth defects. And sterility. And the radioactivity will kill lots of wildlife and cause cancers in those who eat them. The soils in Japan will probably by poisoned for a long time. The water table will be poisoned.

    Coal pollution can taint and poison too, but the effects don’t have a half-life of thousands of years.

    This chart was made just 5 days after the tsunami. I wonder if they will revise it a year from now, when the cancers and birth defects start rolling in? I doubt it.

    For the greenies, a word of advice: Stop trying to fear-monger with the Scooby-Doo specter of CO2, and focus on showing the world how green energy is VIABLE. Stop the entropic doctrine and remember that ANY “green future” will built upon the current dominant energy sources.

    If you have all the answers, then share them and stop slinging guilt.

    • http://GrowMap.com Gail Gardner

      Why must “ANY “green future” be built upon the current dominant energy sources”? There is ample sun and wind that we are simply ignoring. Why can we not build a “green future” on solar and wind power?

  • Rageplug

    For this to be even remotely believable, the original chart needs to list it’s sources (which it does not). What’s the time frame we are looking at here? If we are talking about coal vs. nuke since the start of the Industrial Revolution, then yes, I am very much inclined to believe the veracity of this comparison.

    If we are talking about, say, the last ten years then I think it’s time to turn on the bullshit detector.

    Coal is certainly not a perfect energy source, but it’s not the dirty beast it once was. Particulate pollution from coal plants has been greatly reduced, and as far as CO2 goes, AGW is a theory (not saying it is or isn’t true) so to desire to pump up the death count because of it is hardly good science.

    The big question is: What can meet our current energy needs? The answer (so far) is coal, then oil, then natural gas, then nuke. We use a lot of power and coal delivers (not without negatives) but to champion nukes because of green dogma is wrong-headed.

    I hope that nukes can be made safe, but Fukushima is melting down. People are dying and will continue to die. And there will be birth defects. And sterility. And the radioactivity will kill lots of wildlife and cause cancers in those who eat them. The soils in Japan will probably by poisoned for a long time. The water table will be poisoned.

    Coal pollution can taint and poison too, but the effects don’t have a half-life of thousands of years.

    This chart was made just 5 days after the tsunami. I wonder if they will revise it a year from now, when the cancers and birth defects start rolling in? I doubt it.

    For the greenies, a word of advice: Stop trying to fear-monger with the Scooby-Doo specter of CO2, and focus on showing the world how green energy is VIABLE. Stop the entropic doctrine and remember that ANY “green future” will built upon the current dominant energy sources.

    If you have all the answers, then share them and stop slinging guilt.

  • dracon

    wonder who pulled this “statistic” out of who’s ass…. think it’s time for “environmentalists” to stop acting as shills for the nuclear lobby. Global warming is fucked but not nearly as bad as tens of thousands of years of cancer!! GOOD mag is BAD!! There is no such thing as “safe” nukes and that’s the bottomline folks

    • Bud Bundy

      I was so busy laughing I forgot to argue.

      • 5by5

        Wait! Three! Three identical responses!

        I now vote for you being a bot. Though complete idiot is always still a possibility…

        • razzlebathbone

          Definitely a bot. Which isn’t to say it wasn’t human at one time. Let’s watch its responses closely from here on out and see how its programming behaves. Should be interesting.

  • dracon

    wonder who pulled this “statistic” out of who’s ass…. think it’s time for “environmentalists” to stop acting as shills for the nuclear lobby. Global warming is fucked but not nearly as bad as tens of thousands of years of cancer!! GOOD mag is BAD!! There is no such thing as “safe” nukes and that’s the bottomline folks

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    well if this is a consideration of the ratio of power output to deaths; if you took the ratio for individual power plants rather than grouping power types, and applied it to fukishima, you get to learn what it means to divide by zero.

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    well if this is a consideration of the ratio of power output to deaths; if you took the ratio for individual power plants rather than grouping power types, and applied it to fukishima, you get to learn what it means to divide by zero.

  • johnyappleseed

    If one is to believe this number and also the [independent] unofficial number of deaths due to Chernobyl [which is an ongoing event], then you end up with this 4000 times 1000000= 4bln. deaths due to coal. Yeah, I don’t think so. Just another attempt to paint nuclear energy green, but then again the UN [official] number of deaths for Chernobyl, is only purported to be around 4000. Nice try coal and oil are terribly toxic in there own right but not nearly as deadly as nuclear. RADIATION the gift that keeps giving…..toxic clean up of coal mine 10bln$, toxic clean up of Gulf oil spill 20bln$, radioactive birth defects and incurable cancers for generations to come, priceless!

  • Anonymous

    If one is to believe this number and also the [independent] unofficial number of deaths due to Chernobyl [which is an ongoing event], then you end up with this 4000 times 1000000= 4bln. deaths due to coal. Yeah, I don’t think so. Just another attempt to paint nuclear energy green, but then again the UN [official] number of deaths for Chernobyl, is only purported to be around 4000. Nice try coal and oil are terribly toxic in there own right but not nearly as deadly as nuclear. RADIATION the gift that keeps giving…..toxic clean up of coal mine 10bln$, toxic clean up of Gulf oil spill 20bln$, radioactive birth defects and incurable cancers for generations to come, priceless!

  • johnyappleseed

    How about solar? What about wind? How many deaths per TWh for these?……. Oh yeah, they are to expensive, right. Profits for the few at the risk of the many at the expense of all. $>life=DEATH.

    • Bud Bundy

      I was so busy laughing I forgot to argue.

    • Joe D

      How about we just reinvest in hydroelectric power, seems to be about the safest and easiest way to make power to me

  • Anonymous

    How about solar? What about wind? How many deaths per TWh for these?……. Oh yeah, they are to expensive, right. Profits for the few at the risk of the many at the expense of all. $>life=DEATH.

  • Heymisterbill

    Radiation, the gift of death that keeps on giving and once it begins it will leave coal deaths as a drop in the bucket.
    What the hell lets try it and see….oops, just did.

    • Bud Bundy

      I was so busy laughing I forgot to argue.

      • 5by5

        Wow, Bud. Two identical responses in the same thread?

        Either you’re a corporate hack hired by the nuclear industry to gray market on sites like this for (ironically) disinformation purposes, and you simply lack the creativity to come up with a better comeback, or you’re a bot programmed by the same industry to spew out pro-nuclear responses to blogs.

        Either way, you’re lame.

        • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

          He could also just be an idiot. You forgot that one.

          • 5by5

            See below. :-)

  • Heymisterbill

    Radiation, the gift of death that keeps on giving and once it begins it will leave coal deaths as a drop in the bucket.
    What the hell lets try it and see….oops, just did.

  • Joseph Cardwell

    Actually Johnny, Wind is cheaper than nuclear. It’s not about the effectiveness of the energy source in a free market, it’s about lobbyists who control federal subsidies for the nuclear industry.

    • Bud Bundy

      Actually Johnny Wind is for the people who can’t do math.

      • 5by5

        Sorry, Bud, Joseph is correct.

  • Joseph Cardwell

    Actually Johnny, Wind is cheaper than nuclear. It’s not about the effectiveness of the energy source in a free market, it’s about lobbyists who control federal subsidies for the nuclear industry.

  • Bud Bundy

    Actually Johnny Wind is for the people who can’t do math.

  • Bud Bundy

    I was so busy laughing I forgot to argue.

  • Bud Bundy

    I was so busy laughing I forgot to argue.

  • Bud Bundy

    I was so busy laughing I forgot to argue.

  • Yes this is a threat

    Nuclear power is the future. Those who say otherwise make excellent fertilizer.

    • 5by5

      Actually, if nuclear power in “the future” we’re all gonna make excellent fertilizer for the mutant plants that will feed off our rotting carcasses.

  • Yes this is a threat

    Nuclear power is the future. Those who say otherwise make excellent fertilizer.

  • Haystack

    I’m surprised people are so hostile. This doesn’t seem like a controversial statement to me. Nuclear disasters are scary and catastrophic when they happen, but they happen rarely. In addition to its contribution to climate change and the devastation it wreaks upon mountaintops, coal extraction is costs lives on a routine basis. Think about the particulates its throwing into the atmosphere, the dangers involved in its extraction and the long-term health effects suffered by miners. It’s a bit like comparing deaths caused by terrorism to deaths caused by cancer.

    I’m all for solar, wind, and other forms of renewable energy. The problem is that, for the foreseeable future, we need a certain level of baseline energy–power produced at a reliable, constant rate, regardless of the weather. If we get to choose between nuclear and wind/solar, then I’d definitely take the latter, but if the choice is between nuclear and coal, I’d probably take the nuke plant.

    • http://www.facebook.com/cees.timmerman Cees Timmerman

      Baseline power at night? Isn’t that just because it’s harder to shut down and restart nuclear and other fossil fuel plants than stopping a few windmills?

  • Haystack

    I’m surprised people are so hostile. This doesn’t seem like a controversial statement to me. Nuclear disasters are scary and catastrophic when they happen, but they happen rarely. In addition to its contribution to climate change and the devastation it wreaks upon mountaintops, coal extraction is costs lives on a routine basis. Think about the particulates its throwing into the atmosphere, the dangers involved in its extraction and the long-term health effects suffered by miners. It’s a bit like comparing deaths caused by terrorism to deaths caused by cancer.

    I’m all for solar, wind, and other forms of renewable energy. The problem is that, for the foreseeable future, we need a certain level of baseline energy–power produced at a reliable, constant rate, regardless of the weather. If we get to choose between nuclear and wind/solar, then I’d definitely take the latter, but if the choice is between nuclear and coal, I’d probably take the nuke plant.

  • 5by5

    Actually, if nuclear power in “the future” we’re all gonna make excellent fertilizer for the mutant plants that will feed off our rotting carcasses.

  • 5by5

    Actually, if nuclear power in “the future” we’re all gonna make excellent fertilizer for the mutant plants that will feed off our rotting carcasses.

  • 5by5

    Sorry, Bud, Joseph is correct.

  • 5by5

    Sorry, Bud, Joseph is correct.

  • 5by5

    Wow, Bud. Two identical responses in the same thread?

    Either you’re a corporate hack hired by the nuclear industry to gray market on sites like this for (ironically) disinformation purposes, and you simply lack the creativity to come up with a better comeback, or you’re a bot programmed by the same industry to spew out pro-nuclear responses to blogs.

    Either way, you’re lame.

  • 5by5

    Wait! Three! Three identical responses!

    I now vote for you being a bot. Though complete idiot is always still a possibility…

  • 5by5

    What cracks me up about this kind of evaluation is that it completely ignores one simple fact — blind luck.

    If the Chernobyl incident hadn’t happened in the middle of frack-nowhere Siberia, and instead had happened at say, the Indian Point nuclear facility in New York state, the entire eastern seaboard would have been glowing in the dark.

    The permanently uninhabitable area from Chernobyl, if overlayed onto Indian point includes NYC and the full radiated area that’s uninhabitable for the next 100 years goes from Syracuse, across the state to Boston, all of Rhode Island and all the way down to Baltimore.

    Imagine trying to evacuate Manhattan ALONE inside of 30 minutes. Answer? Can’t be done. Those people are just DEAD.

    So those seemingly small numbers shown in the lame graphic above, can go exponentially up to catastrophic levels in a single go.

    The ONLY reason why that graphic looks like it does, is shear LUCK.

    And personally, I don’t want to bet the safety of millions of people on something as sketchy as that. No RESPONSIBLE person who cares about life makes that kind of idiotic gamble.

    • mrtastycakes

      Chernobyl did not happen in the middle of frack-nowhere Siberia. It happened in the Ukraine, ~50 miles from Kiev, a city with over 2 million residents. You couldn’t get much farther from Siberia and still be in the USSR.

      Additionally, the <20mi. Chernobyl Exclusion Zone–the uninhabitable area–when overlayed to NYC, doesn't even make it close to going out of the metro area. (The Zone=1444sq. mi., NYC Metro=6720sq. mi.). Not Syracuse to Baltimore. That's ridiculous.

      Nuclear disasters are terrifying, long-lasting, and deadly. They don't need to be exaggerated.

  • 5by5

    What cracks me up about this kind of evaluation is that it completely ignores one simple fact — blind luck.

    If the Chernobyl incident hadn’t happened in the middle of frack-nowhere Siberia, and instead had happened at say, the Indian Point nuclear facility in New York state, the entire eastern seaboard would have been glowing in the dark.

    The permanently uninhabitable area from Chernobyl, if overlayed onto Indian point includes NYC and the full radiated area that’s uninhabitable for the next 100 years goes from Syracuse, across the state to Boston, all of Rhode Island and all the way down to Baltimore.

    Imagine trying to evacuate Manhattan ALONE inside of 30 minutes. Answer? Can’t be done. Those people are just DEAD.

    So those seemingly small numbers shown in the lame graphic above, can go exponentially up to catastrophic levels in a single go.

    The ONLY reason why that graphic looks like it does, is shear LUCK.

    And personally, I don’t want to bet the safety of millions of people on something as sketchy as that. No RESPONSIBLE person who cares about life makes that kind of idiotic gamble.

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    He could also just be an idiot. You forgot that one.

  • mrtastycakes

    Chernobyl did not happen in the middle of frack-nowhere Siberia. It happened in the Ukraine, ~50 miles from Kiev, a city with over 2 million residents. You couldn’t get much farther from Siberia and still be in the USSR.

    Additionally, the <20mi. Chernobyl Exclusion Zone–the uninhabitable area–when overlayed to NYC, doesn't even make it close to going out of the metro area. (The Zone=1444sq. mi., NYC Metro=6720sq. mi.). Not Syracuse to Baltimore. That's ridiculous.

    Nuclear disasters are terrifying, long-lasting, and deadly. They don't need to be exaggerated.

  • DeepCough

    It’s not that we can’t have clean and efficient energy–it’s just that, well, making progress costs jobs, even though those industries that provide these jobs cause infinitely more harm than good, no matter if it’s fossil fuels or nuclear energy.

  • DeepCough

    It’s not that we can’t have clean and efficient energy–it’s just that, well, making progress costs jobs, even though those industries that provide these jobs cause infinitely more harm than good, no matter if it’s fossil fuels or nuclear energy.

  • DeepCough

    It’s not that we can’t have clean and efficient energy–it’s just that, well, making progress costs jobs, even though those industries that provide these jobs cause infinitely more harm than good, no matter if it’s fossil fuels or nuclear energy.

  • Anonymouse

    We shouldn’t be comparing these accidents to one another we should add all of them up and compare the sum to the amount of accidents due to clean energy sources. This is all BS to make us feel better, its like comparing Japans earthquake to much more horrible earthquakes and natural disasters thousands of years ago in order to make it seem not that bad. Many lives were lost and nothing will change that. We need to stop relying on nonrenewable energy resources.

  • Anonymouse

    We shouldn’t be comparing these accidents to one another we should add all of them up and compare the sum to the amount of accidents due to clean energy sources. This is all BS to make us feel better, its like comparing Japans earthquake to much more horrible earthquakes and natural disasters thousands of years ago in order to make it seem not that bad. Many lives were lost and nothing will change that. We need to stop relying on nonrenewable energy resources.

  • r9ver

    Population Control is the only long term answer to power consumption and provisioning.

  • r9ver

    Population Control is the only long term answer to power consumption and provisioning.

  • 5by5

    See below. :-)

  • Uncle B

    Statement needs to be qualified with ‘American’ nuclear. See Tsinghua University, China, Pebble bed, gas, reactors – up and running as we speak, fail-safe designed right in at the beginning. Also bear in mind: China is devoting Billions of Yuan and its best brains to building safer, sane, plutonium free, Thorium fueled reactors.(N.B. NOT to trounce Iraq to please Saudis). America is stuck by Corporatist, Capitalist, forces on re-producing Uranium fueled ‘Tea-Pot’ designs from the 1950′s.Even the mighty GE admits, in fact touts the idea that its “new” reactors are second through fifth generation of the basic slide-rule designed 1950′s product, Goddammit! Americans are contract, patent, and royalty bound to ever-improve, but never break away from this format – a format proven faulty in Japan, and Three Mile Island. A design astoundingly expensive and almost impossible to de-commission. Like the Oldsmobiles of American folklore, each year the ‘model’ was ‘improved’ . Each year the same tired designs were face-lifted, sheet-metal was stylized, interiors were glorified, bells and whistles were added, but the basic design remained. Until, that is, until the American folks got wind of real improvements in Japanese designs, radical changes, powerful 4 cylinder engines that gave better fuel economy, and 4 speed transmissions that shifted better, lasted longer, and the mighty Oldsmobile was forsaken and left to rust away in planned obsolescence on the sales lots.
    Capitalist. Corporatist methodologies applied to nuclear reactors will end in a Chinese Thorium fueled reactor take-over and the economic demise of the giants. GE and Westinghouse.
    Safer reactors are so possible. the Chinese have proven it, They have them up and running as we speak. They will so epoch American Uranium fed designs, They will produce safer plutonium free thorium fueled reactors, first for domestic demand, then for all Asia, and possibly for license to America.
    America, you dropped the ball back in the fifties, when you decided bomb-making material was imperative. Your war-like ways have caught up to you, you still do not dominate the world, and you are rapidly going broke. Time for change, bigger change than Obama ever bargained for, change so gut wrenching, so massive, so elemental, that the very fiber of your nation will tear. A paradigm shift, away from foreign oil energy, away from militarization, away from corporate, capitalist constraints, and towards Socialism, even communism, Chinese style!

  • Uncle B

    Statement needs to be qualified with ‘American’ nuclear. See Tsinghua University, China, Pebble bed, gas, reactors – up and running as we speak, fail-safe designed right in at the beginning. Also bear in mind: China is devoting Billions of Yuan and its best brains to building safer, sane, plutonium free, Thorium fueled reactors.(N.B. NOT to trounce Iraq to please Saudis). America is stuck by Corporatist, Capitalist, forces on re-producing Uranium fueled ‘Tea-Pot’ designs from the 1950′s.Even the mighty GE admits, in fact touts the idea that its “new” reactors are second through fifth generation of the basic slide-rule designed 1950′s product, Goddammit! Americans are contract, patent, and royalty bound to ever-improve, but never break away from this format – a format proven faulty in Japan, and Three Mile Island. A design astoundingly expensive and almost impossible to de-commission. Like the Oldsmobiles of American folklore, each year the ‘model’ was ‘improved’ . Each year the same tired designs were face-lifted, sheet-metal was stylized, interiors were glorified, bells and whistles were added, but the basic design remained. Until, that is, until the American folks got wind of real improvements in Japanese designs, radical changes, powerful 4 cylinder engines that gave better fuel economy, and 4 speed transmissions that shifted better, lasted longer, and the mighty Oldsmobile was forsaken and left to rust away in planned obsolescence on the sales lots.
    Capitalist. Corporatist methodologies applied to nuclear reactors will end in a Chinese Thorium fueled reactor take-over and the economic demise of the giants. GE and Westinghouse.
    Safer reactors are so possible. the Chinese have proven it, They have them up and running as we speak. They will so epoch American Uranium fed designs, They will produce safer plutonium free thorium fueled reactors, first for domestic demand, then for all Asia, and possibly for license to America.
    America, you dropped the ball back in the fifties, when you decided bomb-making material was imperative. Your war-like ways have caught up to you, you still do not dominate the world, and you are rapidly going broke. Time for change, bigger change than Obama ever bargained for, change so gut wrenching, so massive, so elemental, that the very fiber of your nation will tear. A paradigm shift, away from foreign oil energy, away from militarization, away from corporate, capitalist constraints, and towards Socialism, even communism, Chinese style!

  • Anonymous

    Definitely a bot. Which isn’t to say it wasn’t human at one time. Let’s watch its responses closely from here on out and see how its programming behaves. Should be interesting.

  • Anonymous

    Definitely a bot. Which isn’t to say it wasn’t human at one time. Let’s watch its responses closely from here on out and see how its programming behaves. Should be interesting.

  • Anonymous

    Definitely a bot. Which isn’t to say it wasn’t human at one time. Let’s watch its responses closely from here on out and see how its programming behaves. Should be interesting.

  • Anonymous

    Definitely a bot. Which isn’t to say it wasn’t human at one time. Let’s watch its responses closely from here on out and see how its programming behaves. Should be interesting.

  • http://GrowMap.com Gail Gardner

    Am I the only one who immediately wonders why we are not using solar and wind INSTEAD of BOTH coal and nuclear. While coal IS dirty, nuclear power is FAR more dangerous. My college biology professor actually solicited a job in California and moved out of New York because they built a nuclear plant near where he worked. I never forgot what he had to say about the dangers of nuclear power and I still believe it is insane to built such plants because there is NO WAY to make them safe (even if you ignore the fact that there is no way to safely store the by-products that last longer than what they are stored in)!

    I’m with 5by5. No reasonable person takes “that kind of idiotic gamble” and evacuation is NOT an option (as Houston, Texas found out when they tried it.) There are not enough roads leading away from ANY city to get everyone out. If you think you may need to leave you better leave waaayyyyy before anyone else decides to go.

    All of the issues we have are from non-sustainable living which includes moving massive numbers of people into small spaces. If you want to survive the coming economic meltdown now is the time to move somewhere you can grow food and raise chickens far enough away from the starving, desperate people who will be stuck in cities that can not feed them.

  • http://GrowMap.com Gail Gardner

    Am I the only one who immediately wonders why we are not using solar and wind INSTEAD of BOTH coal and nuclear. While coal IS dirty, nuclear power is FAR more dangerous. My college biology professor actually solicited a job in California and moved out of New York because they built a nuclear plant near where he worked. I never forgot what he had to say about the dangers of nuclear power and I still believe it is insane to built such plants because there is NO WAY to make them safe (even if you ignore the fact that there is no way to safely store the by-products that last longer than what they are stored in)!

    I’m with 5by5. No reasonable person takes “that kind of idiotic gamble” and evacuation is NOT an option (as Houston, Texas found out when they tried it.) There are not enough roads leading away from ANY city to get everyone out. If you think you may need to leave you better leave waaayyyyy before anyone else decides to go.

    All of the issues we have are from non-sustainable living which includes moving massive numbers of people into small spaces. If you want to survive the coming economic meltdown now is the time to move somewhere you can grow food and raise chickens far enough away from the starving, desperate people who will be stuck in cities that can not feed them.

  • http://GrowMap.com Gail Gardner

    Why must “ANY “green future” be built upon the current dominant energy sources”? There is ample sun and wind that we are simply ignoring. Why can we not build a “green future” on solar and wind power?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Cees-Timmerman/1564999382 Cees Timmerman

    AFAIK, the best energy sources are: aneutronic fusion (theoretical) > fusion (under development, a little ionizing radiation) > solar (varies) > recent biomatter (waste is already powering cities) > natural water stream (varies, sediment?) > geothermal (limited or relatively weak, pollution?) > thorium fission (pollution?) > uranium-235 fission (rare, pollution, nuclear war) > uranium-238 fission (more pollution, nuclear war) > wind (limited, varies, needs rare magnets) > hydroelectric dam (fresh water source, but could cause earthquakes and floods, limited) > coal (much pollution) > oil (somehow worse than coal; scarce?) > old growth wood (burning ancient biodiverse carbon sinks that create & sustain life is not a good idea and the leading cause of global warming).

    Human muscle power using glucose counts as recent biomatter.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cees.timmerman Cees Timmerman

    AFAIK, the best energy sources are: aneutronic fusion (theoretical) > fusion (under development, a little ionizing radiation) > solar (varies) > recent biomatter (waste is already powering cities) > natural water stream (varies, sediment?) > geothermal (limited or relatively weak, pollution?) > thorium fission (pollution?) > uranium-235 fission (rare, pollution, nuclear war) > uranium-238 fission (more pollution, nuclear war) > wind (limited, varies, needs rare magnets) > hydroelectric dam (fresh water source, but could cause earthquakes and floods, limited) > fossil gas > coal (much pollution) > oil (somehow worse than coal; scarce?) > old growth wood (burning ancient biodiverse carbon sinks that create & sustain life is not a good idea and the leading cause of global warming).

    Human muscle power using glucose counts as recent biomatter, and i meant “limited” as in “only efficient in limited area”, not limited as in rare or finite.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Cees-Timmerman/1564999382 Cees Timmerman

    Baseline power at night? Isn’t that just because it’s harder to shut down and restart nuclear and other fossil fuel plants than stopping a few windmills?

  • Joe D

    How about we just reinvest in hydroelectric power, seems to be about the safest and easiest way to make power to me

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