Saturday, March 19, 2016
Most Americans Now Oppose Nuclear Energy
When global climate change became an issue, a lot of people decided that nuclear energy would once again become a viable alternative to the use of fossil fuels. But the 2011 Fukushima disaster in Japan threw cold water on that premise, and since then the popularity of nuclear power has been decreasing (see top chart). A new Gallup Poll (done between March 2nd and 6th of a random national sample of 1,019 adults, with a 4 point margin of error) shows that currently about 54% of Americans oppose nuclear power. This is the first time Gallup has found a majority opposing nuclear power.
The second chart shows the percentage in each political division that favor the use of nuclear power. Note that only 34% of Democrats and 46% of Independents support nuclear power. The only political division with a majority supporting nuclear power is Republicans (53%).
Americans are starting to believe that there are affordable, renewable, and non-polluting alternatives (solar, wind, wave, etc.) to the use of either nuclear power or fossil fuel power.