Debating the costs of nuclear energy

Nuclear physicist Gaopalelwe Santswere, and Mike Kantey from the Coalition Against Nuclear Energy (Cane) joined 702 and CapeTalk host, Eusebius McKaiser to chat about Nuclear energy and whether or not is a viable option for South Africa to help deal with energy insecurity.

The National Nuclear Regulator describes nuclear energy as energy in the nucleus (core) of an atom. Atoms are tiny particles that make up every object in the universe. There is enormous energy in the bonds that hold atoms together.

Nuclear energy can be used to make electricity. But first, the energy must be released. It can be released from atoms in two ways: nuclear fusion and nuclear fission. In nuclear fusion, energy is released when atoms are combined or fused together to form a larger atom. This is how the sun produces energy. In nuclear fission, atoms are split apart to form smaller atoms, releasing energy. Nuclear power plants use nuclear fission to produce electricity.

Santswere explains that because the market for nuclear has not been tested and there are uncertainties on how much it will cost the country, therefore, we cannot say nuclear energy is not viable.

He goes on to say that nuclear energy should be treated as an investment, especially in an ailing economy such as South Africa.

From a numbers point of view we don't know how much it will cost the country because we have not tested the market.

Gaopalelwe Santswere, nuclear physicist

Kantey responds to Santswere by saying that the point of the nuclear industry viability is for export sales, adding that the plan for the table beds for export sales never got off the ground despite many billions of rands spent, it never found a buyer overseas.

A future nuclear programme will cost in excess of R1 trillion. This will place enormous strain on the balance of payment and without an effective localisation programme will have severe consequences for the South African economy.

Mike Kantey, National Chairperson of The Coalition Against Nuclear Energy (CANE)

Kantey says that if electricity demand is sufficient to meet the need then there is no need for building anything.

We've got a big gas field off the coast of Mozambique which is worthy of commitment and a massive investment in renewables. I'm talking now billions of rands of foreign direct investment which we all want in solar and wind farms. Particularly solar in the Northern Cape which is the highest solar radiation in the world which is higher than Spain and California.

Mike Kantey, National Chairperson of The Coalition Against Nuclear Energy (CANE)

If you look at electricity demand projected in 2007, what you have is a situation where the demand electricity in 2017 is less than it was in 2007.

Mike Kantey, National Chairperson of The Coalition Against Nuclear Energy (CANE)

Listen to the clip below for more on nuclear energy:


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
10-point plan to fix South Africa – it’s not rocket science (by Magda Wierzycka)

10-point plan to fix South Africa – it’s not rocket science (by Magda Wierzycka)

It’s simple to get the country back on track, says Sygnia Asset Management’s activist CEO on Bruce Whitfield's The Money Show.

'ANC Government will continue milking the cow until there’s no milk at all'

'ANC Government will continue milking the cow until there’s no milk at all'

Deputy Finance Minister Sfiso Buthelezi, ex-Deputy DG Andrew Donaldson and Lumkile Mondi (Wits) analyse the MTBPS.

Most important aspects of Malusi Gigaba’s ‘mini-budget’ speech

Most important aspects of Malusi Gigaba’s ‘mini-budget’ speech

Bruce Whitfield asks Investec Asset Management Economist Nazmeera Moola to distil the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement.

We expect a higher quality of journalism - Russian Embassy

We expect a higher quality of journalism - Russian Embassy

On Monday the Press attaché of the Russian Embassy responded to claims that Putin had a hand in the latest Cabinet reshuffle.

'I don't know why Russia's bothered to deny their involvement, Zuma didn't'

'I don't know why Russia's bothered to deny their involvement, Zuma didn't'

Stephen Grootes responds to the Russian Embassy after it denied reports that it had a hand in SA's latest Cabinet reshuffle.

Mahlobo seems to be the Russians' favourite Cabinet minister - Adriaan Basson

Mahlobo seems to be the Russians' favourite Cabinet minister - Adriaan Basson

It's alleged that a top team sent by Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered Zuma to speed up a multibillion-dollar nuclear deal.

Are the Russians and nuke deal linked to the Cabinet reshuffle?

Are the Russians and nuke deal linked to the Cabinet reshuffle?

EWN reporter Gia Nicolaides delves into allegations that a Russian delegation is tied to the recent Cabinet reshuffle.

[LISTEN] Words you will hear today:  ядерной [ yadernoy]

[LISTEN] Words you will hear today: ядерной [ yadernoy]

The Sunday Times has reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government influenced last week’s cabinet reshuffle.

Here is why a possible nuclear deal with Russia may be risky

Here is why a possible nuclear deal with Russia may be risky

Stephen Grootes chats to Physics Professor, Hartmut Winkler on the possible reasons why Russia is pursuing a nuclear deal with SA.

SA might be downgraded due to recent #CabinetReshuffle says economist

SA might be downgraded due to recent #CabinetReshuffle says economist

Dennis Dykes, a chief economist at Nedbank says ratings agencies do not, however, perceive South Africa in an unfavourable light.

Popular articles
Africa State of Mind: 'My dream is to be global' -  Sho Madjozi

Africa State of Mind: 'My dream is to be global' - Sho Madjozi

In this episode of Africa State of Mind, Lee Kasumba chats to South African rapper Sho Madjozi about her upbringing, and rise to fame.

[LISTEN] Health tips for the festive season

[LISTEN] Health tips for the festive season

In the health feature, CEO of Proactive Health Solutions Dr Fundile Nyathi chats about some health issues the generally arise during the festive season.

'Cyril is the most popular president since Nelson Mandela'

'Cyril is the most popular president since Nelson Mandela'

Author Max de Preez weighs in on where SA would be if Jacob Zuma was still president and the impact of Ramaphosa now.

[WATCH] Internet search for talented singer Nosipho is over...she's been found!

[WATCH] Internet search for talented singer Nosipho is over...she's been found!

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.

'Evidence is solid. Poor people’s money was used illegally. Shivambu benefitted'

'Evidence is solid. Poor people’s money was used illegally. Shivambu benefitted'

Ray White interviews Pauli van Wyk, an investigative journalist with Scorpio at Daily Maverick.

[WATCH] Hilarious little girl tells mom that she needs a boyfriend

[WATCH] Hilarious little girl tells mom that she needs a boyfriend

Khabazela shares some of the most popular tweets, posts, and videos on 'What's gone viral'.

Miss SA recounts harrowing hijacking attempt

Miss SA recounts harrowing hijacking attempt

Demi-Leigh Nel Peters had her cell phone stolen by armed men whilst stuck in traffic in Hyde Park.

Who is Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi?

Who is Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi?

The EFF lawyer stole the show during the state capture report court battle.