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Energy

Introduction

Nuclear

Nuclear power is the source of energy that has been able to conquer, in only fifty years, a share that is over 6% of  the sources of primary energy and to cover over 15% of  world consumption of electricity (Source: BP Statistical Review of World Energy - June 2010). 
However we consider the distribution of energy, of final energy consumption in Europe, to be around 23% electricity and 77 %  fuels, and consequently even though all the electric energy were to be produced by the nuclear plants, this would cover  only a quarter of our energy consumption.
Production of nuclear power is a long, complex, polluting and energetically costly process. The principal uranium mines in the world are in remote areas and extraction of the mineral requires a lot of work: in order to obtain 160 tonnes of uranium, required  to operate a standard power plant for one year, starting with the granite rock  that is rich in uranium, in a proportion of 1000 parts per million, 160000 tonnes of material are required, and  an even  larger amount of rock must be moved. In fact, after having identified  the presence of uranium in the Earth’s crust, an assessment of the deposit needs to be made, in other words it is necessary to identify how many tonnes of uranium it contains and  it is considered exploitable depending on economic limits. Since twenty years, the number of nuclear power plants in the world has been fundamentally stable and in 2010 the number was 441 units (Source: www.iaea.org).

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