We know that, for the moment, even natural sources such as wind and solar power cannot keep up with our energy-hungry modern life. The question of sustainability has been popping up frequently recently as the fossil fuel reserves keep dwindling. Even fracking isn’t sustainable and we are starting to see the economical weaknesses. While wind and sunlight are renewable sources, the technology that can harness such power and produce enough energy to power a large city is still years ahead in the future. This leaves nuclear energy as the most viable source that humanity can rely on.
But how sustainable is it?
The answer is that it is very sustainable. It’s not that the uranium reserves are infinite, it’s that the technology used to burn it is much more efficient. Molten chloride fast reactors, can produce about ten times the amount of energy that current reactors make. That’s because they don’t just use the U-235 part of the nuclear fuel to burn, but everything gets burned and turned into energy. And with saltwater replacing mined uranium as fuel, we can get trillions of Kilowatt hour of energy a year for hundreds or even thousands of years in the future.