Is Nuclear Power Really the Safest Form of Energy?

Nuclear is the safest source of energy, producing only one-quarter the number of deaths per terrawatt hour as wind, which is the second safest. Coal is by far the most dangerous, producing deaths both in the mining and transportation and in its emissions of air pollution. Petroleum is the second most dangerous, again producing deaths in the drilling and in emissions from automobiles. Natural gas, hydro and wind are all extremely low by comparison but nuclear is the best. What seems to prompt fear of nuclear is the possibility of a catastrophic accident but even in the worst disaster in American history, Three Mile Island, no one was hurt or killed. http://www.realclearenergy.org/charticles/2015/12/04/nuclear_safest_source_of_energy_108914.html

Nuclear is the safest source of energy, producing only one-quarter the number of deaths per terrawatt hour as wind, which is the second safest. Coal is by far the most dangerous, producing deaths both in the mining and transportation and in its emissions of air pollution. Petroleum is the second most dangerous, again producing deaths in the drilling and in emissions from automobiles. Natural gas, hydro and wind are all extremely low by comparison but nuclear is the best. What seems to prompt fear of nuclear is the possibility of a catastrophic accident but even in the worst disaster in American history, Three Mile Island, no one was hurt or killed.
http://www.realclearenergy.org/charticles/2015/12/04/nuclear_safest_source_of_energy_108914.html


Historically, nuclear energy has proven the safest form of power generation in the nation-states that have implemented it. In countries such as France, Germany, the US, the UK, etc., nuclear energy has shown itself to be very safe.

Contrary to popular depictions (and the conspiracy website mentioned above), Fukushima was actually a test case that bolstered the nuclear safety issue. Not a single fatality resulted from the power plant when, not one, but three reactor cores melted down as a result of a magnitude nine quake and 60 foot high tsunami that killed tens of thousands, devastating the surrounding countryside and infrastructure, severely limiting the ability to respond to the loss of water pumps keeping the reactors that had automatically gone off line from cooling down. The above graphs cover the entire half century of nuclear power use in all countries around the entire planet. A nuclear power plant built in the sixties is about as technologically distant from a new one as your smart phone is from a transistor radio, a 707 from a 787.

What is science? One stripped down definition might be the use of math to uncover reality. It’s close cousin, engineering, might be defined as the application of math and science to create technology. Back when Darwin first published his treatise, debating creationists was even more challenging because at that time Darwin had no idea what the physical mechanism was that caused change. Today, thanks to the likes of Rosalind Franklin who managed to take X-ray diffraction images (worth a thousand words) of a DNA molecule that very likely gave the hint to Watson and Crick that helped them unravel the double helix structure of the molecule, we now know what that mechanism is. The evolutionary process, it turns out, is raw mathematics. Around the world, organism genomes are unraveled and stored in computers daily. 2 + 2 = 4. That’s science. Nuclear energy’s safety statistics are undeniable. __ http://www.energytrendsinsider.com/2015/12/02/bill-nye-the-science-guy-social-primate-and-nuclear-energy/

More on comparisons of “deaths per TWh” from Brian Wang

It is important to understand that these are “historical statistics,” so they must be understood to represent only the settings from which the data were collected. One cannot, for example, claim that nuclear power would be the safest form of power generation in sub Saharan Africa, for example, based upon the above statistics.

We consider sub Saharan Africa in the context of future nuclear power generation for two reasons:

  1. Sub Saharan Africa contains the most quickly growing human populations
  2. The IQ distribution of sub Saharan African populations suggests that they can provide an insufficient number of well-trained scientists, engineers, and technicians, to maintain a modern nuclear power plant

First, what are the IQ levels needed for nuclear scientists, engineers, and technicians?

Without enough capable people, a society goes dark

Without enough capable people, a society goes dark



Given the high importance of safe practise within nuclear power plants, one would require engineers with IQs of at least 115 to 120, technicians with IQs of at least 100 to 110, and scientists with IQs of at least 130.

Let’s look at average population IQs for a variety of different countries:

Wikipedia IQ of Nations


Note that the different global populations of various regional origin, tend to cluster together into different IQ categories. It is easy to see that East Asian and European nations have higher IQ averages than most Asian, Latin American, and African nations. What do these averages tell us about the ability of a national population to supply the necessary personnel to man a nuclear power plant — or to manage a high tech infrastructure in general?


The average populations of most sub Saharan African populations tend to cluster near an IQ of 70 (plus or minus 5). For Europeans, the averages cluster around 100. For East Asians, the overall average is close to 105.

Combining the information in these images should easily demonstrate that the IQ distributions of sub Saharan African nations do not allow for sufficient numbers of high IQ personnel to safely man a modern nuclear power plant. In other words, for sub Saharan Africa, nuclear power is not likely to prove the safest form of power generation.

Sub-populations and mixed-immigrant populations tend to have average IQ measures that fall outside the “regional norms.” Blacks in the US, for example, have average IQs between 80 and 85. Ashkenazi Jews (Jews of European origin), have been found to have average IQs near 110.

Average IQ levels and economic performance of nations tend to correlate quite closely, in general

IQ Correlates With GDP and A Lot of Other Things The Dark Continent is Dark for a Reason

IQ Correlates With GDP and A Lot of Other Things
The Dark Continent is Dark for a Reason: VDare


Africa has a rapidly growing population which has demonstrated low levels of average IQ, low levels of academic and economic achievement, high levels of violence, and is a perennial recipient of large levels of international assistance. The high level of dysfunction seen within sub Saharan African populations is readily exported in the form of emigration, as Europe will soon discover.

More details on correlations between geographic origin, IQ, and economic performance:

More on IQ and heredity:

Brain size linked to genes and IQ 2015 UCLA

Scientists are slowly homing in on pertinent genes that influence IQ

Genes linked to IQ and brain size

Chapter 14 from “Erectus Walks Among Us”

Plomin on Genes and IQ (PDF)

The bottom line is that nations with high average IQs — such as European, East Asian, and Anglospheric nations — should be developing their nuclear power resources carefully and rapidly. They have more than ample cognitive resources to manage the technical and safety aspects of modern nuclear power.

Nations in sub Saharan Africa, on the other hand, should avoid any large-scale nuclear power development — at least until reliable methods of raising average population IQs can be found.

Other nations with intermediate population IQ levels should look carefully at the issue before jumping in too deeply. Unless they can recruit and pay enough outside experts to manage their nuclear power, they may be borrowing a great deal of trouble by trying to manage the nuclear resource themselves.

Practical advice for Europe and the Anglosphere: It is well past time for a radical cut in immigration from and outside assistance to sub Saharan African nations. The future is tenuous enough as it is, without using ever more scarce resources to create ever-larger problems.

Due to differential birthrates between high-IQ and low-IQ parents, we should note that average global IQs are on the decline:

Below is another illustration of the downward trend line in global IQ, from Fourmilab. You will find documenting information at the website linked.

Higher IQ populations should, in general, be more prosperous, more stable, have more affordable – reliable – high quality electric power, and be less violent overall.

One final note: Due to neglect and lack of awareness, societies often squander their most gifted children on poorly devised systems of education, child raising, and general cultural milieu — such as popular books and other media, popular entertainments, and a generally dumbed-down information flow.

Always be on the lookout for gifted children, in the event that they might be given a worthwhile purpose for which to use their talents. In fact, creative and productive purposes should be made available to all children.

But since many of the disruptive advances in technologies and sciences derive from the work of the cognitively gifted, all of society stands to gain when persons of high IQ and executive function are shunted toward positive and productive pathways.

Certainly safer, cleaner, more affordable and abundant energy supplies are likely to be expanded in such a case. And a more expansive and abundant human future becomes more likely.

It is never too early or late to have a Dangerous Childhood.

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3 Responses to Is Nuclear Power Really the Safest Form of Energy?

  1. This article would make steam come out of Hillary Clinton’s ears if she was ever forced to read it, instead of memos on how to form a coalition composed of the non-white-male democratic majority.

  2. infowarrior1 says:

    There is still the risk of disease causing mutations from radiation and a long half-life of depleted uranium to fix.

    • alfin2101 says:

      True. There is also the risk of falling off one of those tall, scary-looking cooling towers. That would hurt a lot.

      Medically, there is far more to worry about from ordinary lead than from depleted uranium. Depleted uranium is not common in the everyday environment, and in general a long half life indicates greater stability and less radiation hazard. “Depleted” means that it emits far less radiation than “natural” uranium present in nature. Depleted uranium is an excellent radiation shield, better than lead.

      For almost everyone, the greatest radiation exposure is from nature, even if they live next door to a modern nuclear reactor.

      Workers habitually exposed to enriched uranium or plutonium have the most to be concerned about.

      A hysterical fear of radiation has no doubt killed far more people than radiation itself, at least since 1945 outside the USSR (secret nuclear accidents). http://www.hiroshimasyndrome.com/radiation-the-no-safe-level-myth.html

      “The data indicate that people would live longer and healthier lives if they received a little more radiation, not less. “

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