Why is the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor (LFTR) so important? A question no one ever has to ask me, but I feel the need to tell everyone the answer in great detail every time I’m engaged in conversation. Last night, a very dear friend of mine suggested I should list the answers to that very question in my blog. So here we go.
I think most people have some societal or political issue they feel very strongly about. There are a lot of different problems in the world. Everything from pollution, to war and even to the very water we rely on for our very survival. For every one of these issues and problems, I see how LFTR can solve it. Directly, or indirectly. I really don’t think it’s hard to imagine how a cheap, clean, safe, abundant source of energy would change the world.
Here are some examples:
We’ll start with the big one on a lot of people’s minds… Climate Change. More specifically, Anthropogenic Climate Change. Not a concept I fully subscribe to, especially with respect to carbon dioxide somehow being the culprit. Perhaps someday someone can explain to me how a heavier-than-air gas is somehow getting up high enough into the atmosphere to trap heat into the Earth, without killing every oxygen-breathing animal on the planet first. But I digress. It’s pretty obvious to everyone that if you lock yourself in the garage with a running vehicle for a decent length of time, you’ll die. And it’s not like exhaust fumes get any safer just because we’re pumping them into the open air. Burning any fossil fuel releases a host of very nasty chemicals into the air. Things I don’t particularly want to breathe. Whether we’re driving an internal combustion powered vehicle, or generating electricity, you’re releasing these toxins into the air we breathe.
For transportation, the solution is electric vehicles. More and more auto makers are releasing electric versions of their vehicles. However, many have said electric vehicles just have a longer tailpipe, because we burn a lot of fossil fuels to generate the electricity needed to charge an EV. This has been thoroughly debunked of course, but obviously fossil fuels need to be completely removed from the equation in order to clear the air.
This is where Nuclear Power comes into play, and the best source of nuclear power is of course the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor.
But what happens when more and more people start to adopt electric vehicles for transportation? Obviously, we’re going to consume more and more electricity instead of gasoline. The upside is, even if your electric bill doubles, you’ll be saving way more money by not buying gasoline. That is of course unless we’re not generating more electricity to meet the demand. And I’m sorry to say, wind and solar power can’t keep up with our current electricity usage, much less an increase in it. So our choice becomes the long tail pipe of burning coal and natural gas, or clean nuclear power. I know which I would choose.
What about war and terrorism? Another pretty big deal in today’s society. Well, if our fossil fuel usage drops to levels we can produce at home, we no longer have need to import oil from nations that don’t like us. We can leave the middle east alone, it’s no longer of strategic importance to us. This alone will ease international tensions dramatically.
So now we have clean air and peace… What’s next on the list?
How about fresh water? There are many cities and states currently facing drought conditions. Rivers and lakes and groundwater that used to be abundant, is now running dry. The weather isn’t the only culprit, some cities have simply become too large for these water sources to supply. Enter the LFTR, ready to distill sea water, generate salt and produce electricity to pump that water wherever it’s needed. And whatever electricity is left, can be sold on the grid. A trifecta of profitability for the owners of these reactors.
What about the economy? I remember the promise of nuclear power from old TV programs. That electricity would someday be “too cheap to meter.” And when we start using Thorium, which is 100 fold more abundant than uranium, to fuel our reactors… we start making this old adage come true. Imagine, instead of 8-10 cents per kilowatt of electricity, you’re charged by the megawatt. Residential electricity use is a fraction of our industrial use. Suddenly America becomes a more profitable place to manufacture goods, because energy costs are so low. The jobs that fled overseas will suddenly come flocking back home. Unemployment will plummet.
…and when people have jobs, they get HEALTHCARE! Suck on that one Obamacare. And oh, by the way, here comes the middle class, back in action. A new era of prosperity. Welfare and the need for charity goes down, while donations and tax revenues go up. Federal, state and local services get all the funding they need. Taxes go down. Even more jobs get created. The whole economy benefits. All because we have cheap, clean, safe, abundant power from LFTR. Which, by the way, now the whole world wants. Say goodbye to the trade deficit, and every other deficit this country has. Surpluses abound from every possible angle. Even Social Security, as messed up as it has been for my entire lifetime, gets a boost because the economy is doing so well.
Now we can afford to focus on more civil issues, like education. The issues indirectly solved by the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor. When we’re not worried about our whole society collapsing around us, we can focus on other issues. When our economy is strong, we can afford to spend on education and civil services. Hire better teachers because now we can afford to pay for decent educators. Better law enforcement, less crime because people have jobs, less violence since there’s less need for it.
As I said before, it’s not hard to imagine what life would be like, what problems we could solve, when we have access to such an abundant energy source. The Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor can solve so many of our problems. When America prospers, so does the world. We need another Manhattan Project, this time to research the technology to save the world instead of destroying it. We need to commercialize LFTR, design it to be mass-produced and deploy it far and wide. Rid ourselves of fossil fuels once and for all. Give us a safe form of nuclear power, that everyone can trust. Because nuclear power is the most energy dense form of power the world has ever known, and it can change the world. A Thorium fueled Molten Salt Reactor, like LFTR, is the answer to a lot of questions.
Try it for yourself! Think of a problem we have, then imagine what LFTR could do to solve that problem. Be it directly, or indirectly. No matter what your cause is, this is the answer. Research it for yourself. Tell your friends, tell your family, tell your acquaintances, tell the world!