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Business News of Wednesday, 25 November 2020

Source: GNA

No country has industrialised without nuclear energy - Energy experts

Some speakers at the two-day workshop organised by the Nuclear Power Ghana Some speakers at the two-day workshop organised by the Nuclear Power Ghana

No country has industrialised without employing nuclear energy in the generation mix as it is a cheap energy source.

Mr Wisdom Ahiataku-Togobo, the Director of Renewable & Alternative Energies, Ministry of Energy, who said this, explained that nuclear energy, among all energy generation sources and processes, protected the environment and was a sustainable way to generate consumption energy.

He said it was less costly to operate after construction and could provide power for many outlets as well as jobs for many people in the power generation value-chain, and beyond.

He gave the explanation on Tuesday at a two-day workshop organised by the Nuclear Power Ghana, Volta River Authority, Bui Power Authority and the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), to sensitise journalists on energy reporting, the pros and cons of nuclear energy and the need for them to specialise in energy reporting.

The workshop was on the theme: “Ghana’s Power Generation Plan and Current Options to Accelerate Industrial Development.”

Mr Ahiataku-Togobo said some countries, including Ghana, were generating electricity from oil at 12 cents per kilowatt-hour when they could generate the same electricity from nuclear energy at only four cents per kilowatt-hour.

Since nuclear took about 15 years to operationalise, he said, it was prudent that Ghana adopted it within the shortest possible time.

“Anybody who is against Ghana’s nuclear agenda is clearly against Ghana’s movement towards industrialization. Any country which wants to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals needs nuclear energy,” he said.

Dr Stephen Yamoah, the Executive Director of the Nuclear Power Ghana, said Ghana was successful in going through the processes of the 19 milestones in the development of a national infrastructure for nuclear power.

The country was, therefore, in the process of seeking vendors to take an initiative.

Speaking about the misconceptions attached to generating and using nuclear energy, he said people believed nuclear was associated with bombs and had serious repercussions on the environment.

He said those were a fallacy, explaining that it was rather the safest and harmless energy source as its production and waste management was strictly regulated.

Mr Affail Monney, the President of GJA, said the greatest need of journalists was capacity building to enable them to change the profile of every sector, including the energy sector.

He advised participants of the workshop to continue broadening their knowledge in the energy sector, especially in nuclear energy, bearing in mind that education was a process and not a destination.

He gave an assurance the GJA was willing and ready to support any journalist to contribute significantly towards the energy sector with impact-making stories.

Mr Ato Kwamena Dadzie, a News Editor, Multimedia, said nuclear energy had higher energy density than from chemical energy, such as petroleum, adding that small quantities of nuclear fuel could produce exponentially larger amounts of electric power.

Nuclear power has resulted in far fewer accidental deaths per unit of energy, than other major forms of power generation, he said, adding that nuclear reactors were designed to withstand impacts from a large aircraft.

Although nuclear energy plants were expensive and difficult to build, Mr Dadzie said they paid for themselves with time and contributed immensely towards industrialisation.