Death rate per watts, Nuclear, Oil, Coal. Classic chart exposes cognitive dissonance, and persistent self-denial…
Do you have an opinion about nuclear power? About the relative safety of one form of power over another? How did you come to this opinion?
Here are the stats. For every person killed by nuclear power generation, 4,000 die due to coal, adjusted for the same amount of power produced.
Vivid is not the same as true. It’s far easier to amplify sudden and horrible outcomes than it is to talk about the slow, grinding reality of day to day strife. That’s just human nature. Not included in this chart are deaths due to global political instability involving oil fields, deaths from coastal flooding and deaths due to environmental impacts yet unmeasured, all of which skew it even more if you think about it.
This chart unsettles a lot of people, because there must be something wrong with it. Further proof of how easy it is to fear the unknown and accept what we’ve got.
Via Seth Godin
Update: Nuclear waste is not an issue.
Update II: The reblog comments are incredible. Not one acknowledged or seems to have read the post. Nor, it seems, has a single reader clicked through to read the original post. Only one commenter, that I could tell, attempted to discuss the underlying facts. Instead, there were mostly “But” type replies that repeat the very myths this chart aims to debunk. What an incredible experience from my point of view, and a major lesson learned…