What people say
Opinions from members of the Green Party
Mark Dawes – Waltham Forest and Redbridge Green Party
As a Green Party activist for over twenty years, I have always been anti-nuclear power believing the myths that nuclear power is dangerous, the waste problem was unsolvable, and it would lead to more nuclear weapons. But recently I have been looking at nuclear energy again as it became clear we need a clean source of energy to tackle climate change – and I realised I was wrong.
Josh Stringfellow – Kingston Green Party
As Greens we trust the science on climate change. As Greens we should also trust the science on nuclear, that it’s safe, clean, reliable, and a key tool in our fight to avert the worst of the unfolding climate crisis. Josh Stringfellow – Kingston Green Party
Andy Lancelot – Ynys Môn, Cymru
As a kid I was moved by the writings of James Lovelock. At 57 I am now completely convinced that the way humans currently organise themselves en masse is contra-indicated to the well-being of the planet. If we continue along this path WE are the ones who will be destroyed, not the planet. I think the Earth will recover after we’re gone, but while we’re here we should seek to understand it’s...
Peter Vaughan – East Devon Green Party
"I first became interested in Nuclear Power in the early 1970s. At the time concern was being expressed about shortages of fossil fuel. However there was optimism that any energy shortage could be over come by increasing the number of Nuclear Power stations. Sadly this did not happen, partly as a result of protests from environmentalists and other anti-nuclear campaigners. At that time climate...
Francis Moore, London
The more I learn about nuclear energy, the more I am convinced that the long-established and well-meaning traditional Green stance against it is a deeply mistaken and self-defeating one. In the all-encompassing climate emergency the world faces, renewables and nuclear need to be seen as partners working together to address the crisis. We cannot let the perfect become the enemy of the good when...
Cllr Dave Plummer
“Like many people in the green movement there are things that I've always taken for granted, things which seemed fundamental, things which I accepted as true without really looking into them, things which are widely accepted as core tenets for environmentalists. One of those things was opposing nuclear energy. I don't think many, if any, Green Party members would choose nuclear energy over wind,...
Mark Bray-Parry – Guildford
We are in a climate emergency, so let's start with dispensing with the financial arguments for a moment and ask ourselves if gambling on a 100% renewable energy solution that requires further technological advancement is worth the risk? Nuclear energy has the potential to transform our energy production from one reliant on fossil fuels and imports to a low carbon exporting asset worth billions....
Duncan Roy – Lewes
Renewables cannot supply the base load because they are all, in this country, unpredictable and intermittent. They don’t work when the wind won’t blow and the sun don’t shine. Therefore, something else is needed. Something reliable. We need a reliable carbon-free base supply, to keep the electricity going. The only option is nuclear. Whether we like it or not. Because that’s what the evidence tells us.
Mark Yelland – Brighton & Hove
So let’s be straight about this – we need every clean energy tool in the box, and renewables have a major part to play, but it is clear that we are not making anywhere near sufficient headway to meet our climate targets.
Neil O’Doherty – Somerset
“Over the last couple of years, it has become increasingly apparent to me that a logical rather than ideological response to the situation is needed, and for this reason began to question some of my previously held positions on a number of large-scale infrastructure projects that, if carefully delivered, could contribute significantly to the delivery and efficient use of our future energy supply.”
Sam Easterby-Smith – Manchester
“The power stations remain strange, and terrifying. But I now see a certain beauty in them and suspect that we probably need them”.
“I have long been sceptical about the use of Nuclear Power, but the Green Party’s own plans for reaching zero carbon rely on our continued use of it”.
Scott Mabbutt – Northampton
“A common phrase from our opponents about a number of issues is that “Facts don’t care about your feelings” and I think nuclear energy is somewhere where this adage actually applies”.
“Whilst everybody in the party would love to achieve the theoretical bliss of 100% renewables, existing technological deficiencies in storage means this is not a viable policy – for now”.
Matt Stratford – Greenwich
“My support for nuclear power is based on two assessments which I believe are very well-supported by the evidence”.
What the scientists say…
Professor Gerry Thomas – Imperial College London
I can understand that people may be nervous about nuclear power. I was too, until I started working on the health effects of the Chernobyl accident. Now, 35 years later, we can say that the only health effect caused directly by exposure of the population leaving near the site of the Chernobyl accident has been an increase in thyroid cancer in those who were children at the time of the...
Kerry A. Emanuel
As a climate scientist who daily confronts the unacceptable risks associated with anthropogenic climate change, I believe the welfare of civilization depends on the rapid development and deployment of economical, carbon-free energy, perhaps supplemented by carbon capture technologies. It is important to understand that this is not merely a question of decarbonizing existing energy...
James Hansen, PhD & Pushker Kharecha, PhD
As concerned climate scientists, we have published and lectured extensively on the scale and urgency of the human-caused climate crisis and the remedies needed for it. One key finding from our work is that the world will need all available non-fossil energy sources -- nuclear energy as well as renewables -- to be scaled up during the next few decades as fossil fuel emissions are...
Climate change is now on us and there is a very urgent need to take actions to stabilize the warming to an acceptable level. The 1.5° target that was set 5 years ago during the Paris conference is probably out of reach, and the same fate is likely for the 2° target given our incapacity to take the right measures.About 20 years ago, during the Earth summit conference at Johannesburg,...