Bruce Nagy / BF Nagy (USA)
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Great to see you are on the book lists!
Some inaccuracies in the article “Energy Policy: where are we with climate solutions” in the September/October 2021 edition of “The Ontario Technologist”:
1. “For hundreds of years, many countries have spent money to guard nuclear waste…”, but the nuclear industry is less than one hundred years old. One could reasonably say that the nuclear age began during World War 2.
2. “Nuclear power use is in decline all over the world” is misleading. While it may be true in the global aggregate at the moment, some jurisdictions–such as China–are actively increasing their nuclear power capacity.
3. “The industry has never solved runaway cost issues, decade-long construction delays…” is misleading. While that statement is very nearly true, it is my understanding that China’s large current program is enabling them to develop nuclear power plants for predictable costs and schedules. We should expect the same result in other jurisdictions that embark on large-scale new build programs.
4. Regarding buying surplus power from Quebec, I haven’t yet tested whether some information I recently received is accurate, but the notion was that: (a) Quebec doesn’t have enough surplus electricity available to satisfy Ontario; and, (b) Ontario wouldn’t be prepared to pay the higher rates that Quebec can get from the northeastern United States.
The article notes that, “The industry has never… found a working waste disposal solution.” I agree with you. While many would say that Deep Geological Repositories are a sound solution, I would say that it’s a wasteful approach. It’s preferable to finish the research and development efforts and policy/legislative efforts to create a closed loop for used fuel: it is my understanding that at the very least we can build one reactor that takes to completion the waste fuel from conventional reactors. The waste from such a reactor would need to guarded for approximately 300 years, which is quite feasible, and I should think would be socially acceptable as compared to the very long periods associated with Deep Geological Repositories.
Thank you for mentioning ground-source heat pumps: I was recently considering just such a system for my own home. Regrettably, natural gas is just too cheap: my rough estimates indicated that the federal carbon tax needs to increase by roughly 10 times the currently-projected maximum tax in order for there to be an economic case for the ground-source heat pump at my home. For the record: I would support such an increase. In the meantime, I’ll continue to save toward an electrically-powered ground-source heat pump.