"Atoms for Peace"? Nuclear Energy and Peace

University essay from Malmö högskola/Lärarutbildningen

Abstract: In this thesis, nuclear power plants and their role in sustaining peace or threatening it are described and, to some extent, analysed. Nuclear energy contributes to the economic development of the country it is built in by providing electricity with relatively inexpensive prices than that of other kinds of energy. However, the construction costs of nuclear power plants are very expensive and it is a potential threat for human health and the environment. Different arguments on how nuclear power plants might contribute to peace or threaten it are analysed. The analysis is done through Johan Galtung’s articles “Violence, Peace, and Peace Research” and “Cultural Violence”, as well as by recalling few known nuclear accidents as example, mainly the one happened at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Cooperation of different stakeholders at national, regional, and international level is among the most important tools to minimise the possibility of nuclear threat to peace. Nuclear waste and the uncertainties in best practices for the safe management is most probably the most severe problem that future generations will have to face.

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