Go nuclear 2!

Just over one year ago I wrote the piece below:

I guess I have reached that age where I feel I can do much better than the dimwits who are running this country.  I feel highly underwhelmed at their complete lack of vision and foresight.

I have just seen a “Grand Designs” programme where a couple of guys with a couple of million quid turned a water tower in the center of London into a mega-palace worth (I would imagine) somewhere between 10 and 100 times their investment.  This got me to thinking – what could we do if we had Government budgets to play with, and we thought even bigger than those two developers?

Keep with me for just this last piece of the jigsaw.  My first job was at Harwell, yes the atomic energy place.  The U.K. was, for a significant period of time, the font of all knowledge when it came to nuclear reactor design.  We really knew what we were doing.  As a second piece of interlinking knowledge – there are only two places on the planet that can build the new huge steel pressure vessels needed for the next generation of nuclear reactors – and yes, one of those two places is of course the U.K.

A quick Google (always a bad thing to do on an empty stomach) says that the U.K. electrical energy consumption is around 36GW, so let’s call that 40GW.  There are current nuclear reactors rated at 800MW, so let’s say that with our greater know-how regarding reactor technology, we could put together a reactor with 1GW output.  So we could build 40 of these reactors, say over the next 10 years, and we could be energy independent.  It would be possible to get off the gas supply circuit, which is only going to lead to tears, and use electricity for all our domestic and commercial needs (the car and petrol would last a bit longer unfortunately).  It would be possible to even make electricity free for all domestic users – should the Government care to be so brave.  I don’t know what they would do about the current energy providers and the stink they would kick up – but if it was left to me I would give them 10 years notice to find another job.

Such things are possible if you have the will, and the money to back the ideas.  America is thinking about a trillion dollar investment into defence alone – a nuclear-based U.K. would certainly come in at less than that figure.  It could be done.  We won’t do it – and we’ll continue to fret and worry at the current economic situation without taking the really bold measures that could propel us out of this situation.  We won’t do it while we have lily-livered brain-dead Politicians running the show.  Rant over.

I now see some action in Somerset – though unfortunately not at the level of commitment I was hoping for – still, at least it’s a start.


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