Killer Graphics

Here’s a good example of the visual display of information. It’s showing the death rate per watts generated using coal, oil, and nuclear. You barely notice the black square representing nuclear; it’s there, but tiny compared to the deaths that can be attributed to using oil and coal for fuel. If you’re concerned about the risks of nuclear power, it seems to be a lot safer than coal and oil.

I’m not a fan of any these sources of energy and I think we should be pursuing and investing in newer, cleaner energy technologies. With the problems in Japan right now there seems to be a renewed scrutiny of nuclear power. There’s a very dramatic and scary problem in Japan. But, we forget about the non-dramatic, not-as-scary, but chronic problems associated with using oil and coal. Out of sight, out of mind, feel good. It’s going on now, while you’re reading.

Faster and cheaper sound good. Oil and coal are faster and cheaper. But if all of the costs to the environment and to human health are accounted for these things aren’t so cheap. Look at the killer graphics above.