Debate Speech: Nuclear Power

2023 年 2 月 3 日 | DSE English

The school debating team, of which you are one of the members, is entering a debating contest and the motion is ‘Nuclear power is the best source of energy for the future.’ You stand on the con side and write your debate speech. The member with the best speeches will be chosen to represent the school at the competition.

Dear adjudicator, opponent, ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of the negative side, I am strongly opposed to the claim that nuclear power is the best source of energy for the future. While nuclear power may be a possible substitute for fossil fuels which are exhaustible, it is far from being the best source of energy for it brings about detrimental effects to humans, environment and economy. With regards to these three aspects, in this debate, our team will illustrate the reasons which render nuclear power a less-than-desirable power resource.

Nuclear power is produced by uranium, a highly radioactive substance which is hazardous to humans. Leakage may result even from the slightest mistake of improper handling of radioactive materials, causing casualties and cancer in humans. One of the most notable nuclear accidents is the explosion of the Chernobyl nuclear plant in the former USSR which took the lives of many residents nearby. Worse still, many more residents in the neighboring countries were believed to have died from the dispersed radioactive debris and dust in the aftermath.

Our opponent may well argue that nuclear leakage is only attributed to inadequate technology and could be avoided with more advanced technology. Nonetheless, the nuclear crisis in Fukushima, Japan unveils that apart from manual mistakes, natural disasters like earthquake could also make a nuclear catastrophe. Even a technology giant like Japan finds no way to be spared from nuclear accidents. Therefore, we should not be under any illusion that nuclear accidents could possibly be avoided with human effort.

Moreover, the threat that nuclear power poses to the environment is far beyond our estimation: Disposal of highly radioactive nuclear waste took a heavy toll on the affected area for it contaminates the land and water sources. The resultant areas will be left unproductive and barren for tens of years to come. The original ecosystem is severely endangered and an ecological disaster results.

Last but not least, both construction of nuclear power plants and disposal of nuclear waste require astronomical sums of money. Formidable costs may handicap a country’s economy and impose a great burden on tax payers. Could every single country afford this “expensive” power resource and use it as a source of energy? We, the negative team seriously doubt.

Due to all the harmful effects that nuclear power inflicts on humans, environment and economy, it is not even a reliable and safe power resource, let alone the best source of energy. Therefore, today’s motion must collapse.