Nuclear energy preserves the environment with perhaps the lowest impact -- including air, land, water and wildlife -- of any energy source, because it does not emit harmful gases, isolates its waste from the environment and requires less area to produce the same amount of electricity as other sources.
Americans used 17 percent more energy in the '90s than they did in the '80s. By contrast, our nation's energy production only increased by about 2 percent over that time period.
Energy consumption is projected to increase by 32 percent in the next two decades. To meet those needs, our nation would have to construct anywhere from 1,300 to 1,900 new power plants. And even if we could do that, we don't have the transmission in place to move the electricity.
At Entergy Nuclear, we have an advantage. We're a part of the only industry that has the capability to meet this large-scale need in an environmentally friendly way.
Most nuclear power plants produce much more energy than a typical fossil fuel, hydro, solar or wind source. Nuclear power is the most eco-efficient energy source given its high power generation with minimal environmental impact.
Entergy Nuclear is committed to the highest safety standards, recognizing that a safe plant runs reliably and efficiently, and that high safety performance engenders public, regulatory and employee confidence. Entergy recognizes its environmental leadership responsibility and firmly believes that it should be proactive in its efforts to protect, preserve and enhance the environment. This commitment is reflected by Entergy's employment of more than 75 full-time environmental personnel and annual environmental spending of approximately $31 million.
Entergy's nuclear plants have low environmental impacts and risks. Extensive government regulations over nuclear plant construction, operation and maintenance, coupled with multiple redundant safety systems, work together to ensure our plants' safety and security.
Entergy's program for environmental compliance and risk management is based on a three-pronged philosophy: a top-down corporate commitment, implemented by knowledgeable employees with adequate resources, and backed up with effective monitoring and reporting.
Entergy's nuclear plants -- both those in the South that mostly serve our utility companies and those in the Northeast that generate electricity for the wholesale market -- have very low environmental impacts and challenges. Air and water emissions are inherently low due to the nature of the technology and high degree of regulation. Thorough administrative procedures are in place at each site to control discharges to air, water and land, and to document corrective actions associated with any of the programs. Also, periodic self-assessments are held to ensure programs are conducted according to administrative procedures and regulatory requirements.