The end of the world may be a lot closer than the Mayans ever guessed. Only this time, it will not be because of some environmental disaster, and it will certainly not be an event starring Nicholas Cage.
Iran is actively pursuing nuclear power, claiming that they only intend to use it for energy needs.
This is false. Iran contains 16 percent of the world’s oil reserves, second only to Saudi Arabia. While this fact may seem interesting only to a fuel expert, it requires a second look.
Oil can be converted into energy in a similar but safer process than nuclear power, which brings a fallacy into Iran’s argument.
A twin nuclear power plant costs approximately 8 billion dollars, a hefty sum for any nation, especially one struggling with inner turmoil like Iran.
Why then, would Iran be trying so hard to obtain nuclear power? The answer is simple: they strive for nuclear weapons.
Originally, the United Nations believed Iran’s claims. They offered to have the IAEA, or International Atomic Energy Agency, provide Iran with a light-water reactor.
This reactor is a component used in nuclear power plants, but not nuclear weapons. Iran promptly rejected the IAEA’s offer.
While this alone may not be enough evidence to convince the world that Iran is a true nuclear threat, they have done more to persuade.
Iran has been caught harvesting Plutonium, an element that is only used in creating nuclear weapons.
If this is not enough proof, Iran has also manufactured Polonium 210, an isotope whose purpose, similar to Plutonium, is only creating weapons of mass destruction.
Even if Iran was creating nuclear power plants for peaceful purposes, they should still not be permitted.
Nuclear power plants do not exactly have a track record for being safe; see Chernobyl and Three Mile Island.
Ukraine and the US respectively are more stable countries than Iran, so if they could not get it right, we cannot expect Iran too.
Also, nuclear power plants emit hazardous waste which cannot be disposed of at this time, resulting in damage to the environment.
Speaking on damaging the environment, the process for mining Uranium, which is used in creating nuclear power plants, creates higher carbon emissions than converting oil into energy.
Therefore, nuclear power plants contribute more to global warming than other methods Iran could be using.
This is not to say that a country with absolutely no other alternatives should not be authorized to use nuclear power, but Iran is capable of using a cheaper, safer alternative.
Whether the world wants to buy Iran’s excuse that they are using nuclear energy for peaceful purposes or not, it is still a hazard.
Whatever action the world takes, if we stand by and allow Iran to harness nuclear power, as German President Angela Merkel says, “The consequences will be a disaster.”