Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Clever Interactive Video Encourages Americans to Join Renewable Energy Revolution

Energy

Nuclear energy doesn't produce the same climate change-driving carbon emissions as burning fossil fuels. That's led to it being touted as a "clean energy" solution.

But when a tsunami, triggered by a major earthquake, hit the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan four years ago tomorrow, triggering a meltdown of three of its six reactors and the release of large amounts of radioactive material, it showed once again the frightening impacts of nuclear power. It caused many people to question the safety of U.S. nuclear reactors.

Among those gravely concerned are five environmental and clean energy advocacy groups. They have combined forces to produce an interactive online video, Our Epic Future: Create It With Clean Energy, at MakeNuclearHistory.org. It offers viewers the opportunity to explore what the world would be like powered by three different types of energy: fossil fuels, nuclear power and clean, renewable energy.

"While the nuclear industry continues to grasp at straws for relevance, it is more apparent than ever that the clean energy revolution has taken hold in communities across the country," said Annie Leonard, executive director of Greenpeace, one of the groups behind the video. "The Fukushima disaster is a constant reminder that nuclear energy is a dirty and dangerous distraction from real solutions like wind and solar. We should commit to rejecting costly nuclear pipe dreams and supporting the renewable efforts that can help avert our climate crisis."

The Make Nuclear History website explains: “There is a better way. There is a way to power our lives without fossil fuels. There is a solution to climate change without nuclear energy. There is a future where we can solve the climate crisis and power our lives from 100 percent renewable sources and energy efficiency. Now is the time to create our fossil and nuclear-free future … A fossil and nuclear-free future powered by renewable sources is possible and the transition is happening now. The benefits of clean, affordable and renewable energy compared with the dirty, expensive legacy of fossil fuels and nuclear reactors are obvious.”

Nuclear energy is a dirty and dangerous distraction from real solutions like wind and solar. Photo credit: MakeNuclearHistory.org

The video introduces three characters: an old-school oilman wearing a Stetson and string tie singing the praises of natural gas and clean coal, which he calls "cheap, safe and real friendly on the environment;" a smooth-talking nuclear scientist in a white lab coat lauding "the power of the atom;" and a bouncy young woman speaking on behalf of clean energy.

Viewers can follow each into their "lab" where they can follow different options to see the potential outcome of using each energy source. Using simple vivid visuals that recall old-fashioned educational films, a diverse cast of characters and humor, the video makes its point that fossil fuels are dirty and polluting and that nuclear power is no solution.

“Choosing between clean energy and dangerous fuels like coal and nuclear isn’t difficult," said Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, another organization involved in producing the video. "Nuclear has proven time and time again to be too expensive, too slow to build and far too dangerous. Meanwhile, burning fossil fuels is making our families sick and making the climate crisis worse. That’s a huge part of the reason our clean energy economy is growing by leaps and bounds, creating jobs while keeping pollution out of our air, our water and our communities."

Nuclear energy may not cause greenhouse gas emissions but that doesn't mean it's safe. Photo credit: Free Range Studios

After viewing the video, visitors are encouraged to get involved in clean energy campaigns, including urging the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to put in place post-Fukushima safety measures at U.S. reactors and petitioning Congress to reinstate the Production Tax Credit for the wind energy.

Other groups involved in the campaign include Friends of the Earth, Nuclear Information and Resource Center and Public Citizen.

“Fukushima was a global watershed moment illustrating the potential for catastrophic nuclear accidents to occur,” said Friends of the Earth president Erich Pica. “This video contributes to a growing people’s movement demanding a fossil-free, nuclear-free future.”

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Oil Can't Compete With Renewables, Says National Bank of Abu Dhabi

Thyroid Cancer in Young People Surge in Fukushima Since Nuclear Meltdown

Helen Caldicott's 'Nuclear-Free Planet' with Noam Chomsky and Other Great Minds

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Pixabay

By Lauren Panoff, MPH, RD

Fresh fruits and vegetables are a healthy way to incorporate vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants into your diet.

Read More Show Less
These 19 organizations and individuals represent a small portion of the efforts underway to fight racism and inequality and to build stronger Black communities and food systems. rez-art / Getty Images

By Danielle Nierenberg

Following the murder of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis, people around the United States are protesting racism, police brutality, inequality, and violence in their own communities. No matter your political affiliation, the violence by multiple police departments in this country is unacceptable.

Read More Show Less
Residents plant mangroves on the coast of West Aceh District in Indonesia on Feb. 21, 2020. Mangroves play a crucial role in stabilizing the coastline, providing protection from storms, waves and tidal erosion. Dekyon Eon / Opn Images / Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Mangroves play a vital role in capturing carbon from the atmosphere. Mangrove forests are tremendous assets in the fight to stem the climate crisis. They store more carbon than a rainforest of the same size.

Read More Show Less
UN World Oceans Day is usually an invite-only affair at the UN headquarters in New York, but this year anyone can join in by following the live stream on the UNWOD website from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST. https://unworldoceansday.org/

Monday is World Oceans Day, but how can you celebrate our blue planet while social distancing?

Read More Show Less
Cryptococcus yeasts (pictured), including ones that are hybrids, can cause life-threatening infections in primarily immunocompromised people. KATERYNA KON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY / Getty Images

By Jacob L. Steenwyk and Antonis Rokas

From the mythical minotaur to the mule, creatures created from merging two or more distinct organisms – hybrids – have played defining roles in human history and culture. However, not all hybrids are as fantastic as the minotaur or as dependable as the mule; in fact, some of them cause human diseases.

Read More Show Less
National Trails Day 2020 is now titled In Solidarity, AHS Suspends Promotion of National Trails Day 2020. The American Hiking Society is seeking to amplify Black voices in the outdoor community and advocate for equal access to the outdoors. Klaus Vedfelt / DigitalVision / Getty Images

This Saturday, June 6, marks National Trails Day, an annual celebration of the remarkable recreational, scenic and hiking trails that crisscross parks nationwide. The event, which started in 1993, honors the National Trail System and calls for volunteers to help with trail maintenance in parks across the country.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Indigenous people from the Parque das Tribos community mourn the death of Chief Messias of the Kokama tribe from Covid-19, in Manaus, Brazil, on May 14, 2020. MICHAEL DANTAS / AFP / Getty Images

By John Letzing

This past Wednesday, when some previously hard-hit countries were able to register daily COVID-19 infections in the single digits, the Navajo Nation – a 71,000 square-kilometer (27,000-square-mile) expanse of the western US – reported 54 new cases of what's referred to locally as "Dikos Ntsaaígíí-19."

Read More Show Less