John Shanahan, President of Environmentalists for Nuclear - USA: As far as we know, Earth is the only place in the universe with the right climate, atmosphere, water, land, plants, animals, birds and creatures in the oceans to sustain life in all its beauty. People think that Paradise is peaceful and harmonious. But frequently humans are at serious odds with each other. There are people in many walks of life working for peace, strong economies and human dignity. That has never been enough. Many parts of the world are under the influence of leaders or whole governments scheming how to put down other peoples and countries. Some countries are under the influence of people who predict that the world is coming to an end. They want to impose their solutions on everyone. This essay highlights a few scientists and engineers working for a better world overall using science not beliefs or ideologies.
Wade Allison, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Oxford University, UK: Nuclear energy can affect life when a nucleus decays, releasing energy as radiation. Everything, even our own bodiees, contains some natural radioactivity, and nuclear radiation shines on us from space too. If it had been really dangerous, life would have died out aeons ago, when radiation flux was more intense than it is today. To survive the oxidative damage caused by radiation and oxygen, life has evolved a series of amazingly clever design features and strategies.
Wade Allison, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Keble College, Oxford University, UK: Wade Allison is one of Europe's leading science professors and public educators on the subject of low dose radiation. In this essay, he offers a short reflection on where Europe and the UK are today and where they are going.
Wade Allison, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Oxford University, UK: Bottom up, on radiation and nuclear energy we need a fresh programme of science-wide public education in schools and in the community as a whole via the media, omitting the ghoulish images used in the past. Local UK-based initiatives should contribute to worldwide re-education, for example through the BBC. Top down, on radiation safety we need a complete sea change in international guidance. This should be based on scientific understanding and evidence, not the unjustified precaution inherent in the ALARA/LNT philosophy.