With a nuclear power plant proposal taking shape in Green River, folks in Utah are trying to get out in front of the energy-water nexus. From the Salt Lake Tribune:
In parts of the country with dependable water supplies, nuclear power naturally fits with plans to boost the nation’s investment in clean energy sources. While nuclear power plants pose unique safety challenges, they produce energy without adding to the carbon emissions that are dangerously warming the planet, just as solar panels and wind farms do.
But here in the second-driest state, nuclear power’s water requirements should be cause for delaying construction of any such plant until the ramifications are clearly understood.
I’ve honestly not been sure whether to take the Blue Castle project seriously. But others clearly are.
i met someone who knew about this . . . the project may have bought up water rights, but apparently there is no actual water behind the rights . . .
and remember, the developer wants 4 total plants when he’s done, and has obviously co-opted the counties. also, gov. herbert recently gave a pro-nuclear speech.
The water problem is one for any heat-engine power supply, like coal, solar therm, natural gas, nuclear, or oil. If you don’t have cooling available, you shouldn’t stick a heat plant there.
Or, you know, you could design with air cooling in mind. I know LWRs can’t do that, but future reactors can.