Nuclear Energy: Miracle or Threat

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Historical International Atomic Energy Agency, 2011

BY KRISTIAM HERRERA-CARRASCO, THE NEW YORK TIMES

Nuclear energy, as we know, provides a large number of benefits to modern society. Yet it comes at the cost of radiation poisoning, for the smaller amounts, and absolute annihilation when harnessed on the scale of nuclear weaponry. It is no wonder an entire team of experts must fight for its peaceful utilization–the International Atomic Energy Agency.

In light of the anxieties attached to nuclear weapons there are two countries that the IAEA must be cautious of: Iran and North Korea. With North Korea’s total disregard for the requirements of the United Nations Security Council and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and with Iran’s possibly constructing its own nuclear warhead, the IAEA has its hands full–and under these circumstances, their hands are also tied. They must issue demands or request compliance with extreme vigilance for obvious reasons. There may not be an uncomplicated way to address the two nations, either.

This concern is much more urgent, I believe, than worries over the use of nuclear technology by and large. Leaks, explosions, and any other number of malfunctions do compel immediate consideration. However, the IAEA must focus their energies towards negotiating with Iran and North Korea.  Perhaps what the two countries need is a thorough reminder to the dangers of even holding onto nuclear warheads. In a sense, the concerns for the general use of nuclear power is linked to the very reasons why Iran and North Korea must realize the severity of their transgressions.

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