BLUF

Bill Gates argues that nuclear energy is a vital component in helping the world reduce carbon emissions.

Summary

Bill Gates believes climate change is an existential threat to life. Innovative use of nuclear energy is an important tool in reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 because:

  • Available 24/7.
  • It can be set up anywhere in the world.
  • Clean, reliable and affordable.
  • Provides jobs for skilled workers.

Currently, nearly 20% of America's electricity is nuclear sourced. However, many reactors are reaching the end of their lives and are not being replaced. Gates wants to keep and upgrade the safe ones. He chairs, part-owns and runs a technology company, TerraPower, which is developing a Natrium energy system that uses a massive molten salt energy storage system. Its advantages are:

  • Provides steady baseload power.
  • Able to ramp up and down.
  • Reduces costs and time of construction.
  • Could make more energy available to low and middle-income countries.

Gates calls for nuclear technological cooperation just as happened, and is happening, with the development of COVID-19 vaccines.

References

Image Used: File:Nuclear Power Plant - Grohnde - Germany - 1-2.JPG - Wikimedia Commons