Expert: Misconception over the term ‘nuclear’ killing power-source option

Hector Pascua, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 22 2019 06:03 AM

Cooling towers and high-tension electrical power lines are seen near the Golfech nuclear plant on the border of the Garonne River between Agen and Toulouse, France, August 29, 2019. Reuters/Regis Duvignau/File

VIENNA, Austria - An energy expert wants the Philippines to resort to nuclear energy in producing electricity, instead of the sources being currently used.

Dr. Carlo Arcilla, director of Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (PNRI), said nuclear power is cleaner and less wasteful than coal and it produces less carbon pollution than solar power.

"There are more than 450 nuclear power plants actively operating in the world and most of them are in the most progressive countries. Nuclear power supplies about 20 percent of the world’s power needs, emitting zero emissions," Arcilla told ABS-CBN News.

"It is also considered as the most regulated industry in the world."

Arcilla said the biggest stumbling block in the use of nuclear power is not technology but perception. For many Filipinos, the word “nuclear” is always immediately translated to an explosion, he said.

The Philippines uses multiple sources to generate electricity, such as geothermal, coal, hydro, and natural gas plants. Energy is also being derived from wind, solar and biofuel plants in the country. 

The PNRI is the sole nuclear regulatory body in the Philippines, under the auspices of the Department of Science and Technology. Its responsibilities focus on radiation and nuclear research and development.