Visualize a chess game. You are player X, mother nature is player Y.
You have fewer pieces than she does, and have now entered into a phase of the game where, while you are a skilled and talented player, you are also clearly able to recognize that checkmate is inevitable. She’s also got some options in the game which you don’t have, although you were given the option to inspect them before the game started, but chose to ignore that in favor of making up your own version of the rules, which isn’t actually permitted in this game. In other words, the real rules are absolute and determined by Y, the rules we generate will fail but we believe they won’t.
Building a nuclear power plant at the edge of the ocean facing a massive and extremely active earthquake fault is an example of making up these rules and ignoring the more fundamental ground rules of the game. In that case, the rules they made up were: we will build a x meter high (6, I believe) tsunami defense wall. In other words, the rule is that the tsunami that hits in potential will be less than x meters high. Mother nature doesn’t care about these made up rules, so the tsunami was as big as it was going to be, ie, larger than the rule said it would be, x+y, the quake was stronger than they designed for, so that piece of the ecosystem is now compromised and heavily damaged, and thus, the position occupied by X is now weaker than it was 5 days ago.
Making up rules like this is extremely common in I believe all large scale cultures that practice excessive non-sustainable resource extraction. Out of sight out of mind is another form of this rule invention, which is the rule we apply to most of our generated waste products.
Your pieces are parts of your ecosystem. You can use them all up before being checkmated, or you can gracefully tip the king over and admit the inevitable defeat, thus preserving the lives and future viability of your various pieces.
While some might point to the so-called marginal economic benefit of using nuclear energy as opposed to coal fired power plant energy, I am unable to actually derive any meaning from the term ‘marginal economic benefit’ since from what I understand all nuclear power is not economically viable in the first place. That is is, if all mining, construction, de-activation, and most important, permanent long term waste disposal costs are taken into account, the plant is a zero gain enterprise.
If we forget the entire ‘economic’ modeling, which I think is a good place to start, and look merely at extraction rates and long term viability of the various options, it’s clear that none of the current options have any future.