Is nuclear energy really part of the answer to preventing the devastating effects of climate change? Until the earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan, even some ardent environmentalists who'd previously rejected the technology had warmed to the idea.
Recent years have witnessed a renewed interest in nuclear power as people search for ways to prevent the worst of climate change. As part of a so-called nuclear renaissance, some of the myths surrounding nuclear energy have been broadcast with increasing frequency.
Some, including President Obama, have argued that nuclear energy belongs in the mix as an effective means for combating climate change, and recently the president called for a tripling of public financing for new nuclear power plants.
During his presidential campaign Obama declared, "If we want to arrest global warming, then nuclear energy is a powerful, powerful ally in that cause." Obama's opponent, Senator John McCain, called nuclear energy "one of the cleanest, safest, and most reliable energy sources on Earth." In the words of the Energy and Environment Awareness Society, a nuclear industry advocacy group, "Nuclear power plants are as clean and as green as wind power."