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David Fuchs

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What is your New Year's resolutions to change and better the world? This is TED after all.

I read the comments in "What are your New Year's resolutions?"

http://www.ted.com/conversations/15588/what_are_your_new_year_s_resol.html

And realized the wrong question was asked of the TED community. So I ask a simple question, it is not about your feelings, or personal change, but what you can do for humanity.

What is your New Year's resolutions to change and better the world?

Here is mine. I would like you to do me one better.

http://cleantechnica.com/2012/12/29/using-thermodynamics-100-year-old-technology-to-break-the-20-per-mwh-barrier/

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  • Jan 11 2013: I will try to have an impact on my community every day, even if it is a small impact. I cannot just all of a sudden do something that would change the world, but I do have an influence on myself and my community, so I will change my personal attitude and my community. It is a ripple effect.
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    Jan 12 2013: I never make New Year's resolutions. I try to make the world better all year long. I really believe that the things that make my own life better make the world better, that it's all about the win-win.
  • Jan 12 2013: David: It is true that radioactive waste cannot be "deactivated" by any chemical means at all, but that is not the issue. It CAN be "de-activated" .or safely destroyed by taking the LWR waste and continue the "burning " process, which leaves you with very little quantity of waste , which is only dangerous for about 300 years, instead of many thousands. All this is assuming the use of LFTR technology. You can't do this in a LWR Uranium plant. By the way, the LFTR can also use up the many thousands of tons of radioactive waste from LWRs as a fuel as well, getting out the 95% of the energy that the Uranium plants left. (That's why they are so radioactive) The taxpayers are on the hook for something like half a trillion dollars to "bury" the LWR waste, and it is not necessary to do that. What you are saying is seriously misleading.
  • Jan 11 2013: The biggest solvable problem is that of developing a safe, "Energy Dense" source of power, cheaper than coal. This problem has already been largely solved, but people don't know about it. So we need to tell them.. A secret US project druing the Cold War was to develop a nuclear fission aircraft engine, small, safe, and powerful enough to propel a bombing plane. This was mostly aqccomplished, but the project was shut down and forgotten about, mainly because it didn't produce bomb material. This Thorium powered Liquid Fueled reactor (LFTR) doesn't have all those disagreeable side effects of the common Uranium solid fuel reactors of the Fukushima tyype. The level of civilization correlates strongly with the abundance of cheap power, and our traditional sources are no longer up to the job. So we need to get on with this. Look up Thorium, LFTR, Kirk Sorensen, for a good summary.
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      Jan 12 2013: The problem with going nuclear is the waste disposal - storage issue. Until we can dump the waste into the sun, or some place else it will not cause an issue, it will remain an issue.
      • Jan 12 2013: David: This problem has already been solved. I was an engineer for 34 years, and I agreed with your idea that nuclear waste "disposal" was a deal breaker. Then I found out inadvertently last year that there is ANOTHER type of nuclear fission reactor which operates completely differently from the Fukushima Uranium solid fuel rod type. The Uranium LWRs , because of their inefficiency and design flaws DO produce unmanageable amounts of long lived radioactive wastes, but the Thorium Liquid Fueled reactor produces 200 times less waste than the LWRs, and most of that kind of "waste" is useful stuff, which can be sold. The Thorium LFTR does not use solid fuel rods, or water, or high pressures, and is intrinsically safe. "walkaway failsafe , without any need for external power in cases of emergency. It has a lot of other benefits as well. This LFTR was designed to be a nuclear fission aircraft engine, designed and demonstrated 50 years , then abandoned and forgotten (No bomb material) Look up Youtube, Thorium LFTR, Kirk Sorensen, for a good summary.
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          Jan 12 2013: The problem is that every usable material in contact with a fission event becomes radioactive, and it remains that way for a very long while. It is not about the reaction itself, it is about the container it is in, the pipes, and the high and low speed neutrons. There is no way to create perfectly pure alloys. How many nuclear plant shave you actually seen decommissioned, and how much has it cost? Look at the decay charts. Humanity has been around for less time than most nuclear waste requires to decay.

          Over time nuclear power requires more cost in storage than the energy generated.

          Feel free to bury the stuff in your backyard.if you truly believe in this technology.