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Striking a balance


The most strongly worded comments in your last issue of NCE were apparently from constructors with a vested interest in nuclear power. I was sorry to see such a reaction against what I thought was your balanced editorial against nuclear in the best British tradition of editorial freedom.

The other tradition - British lack of forward planning by government - could now be reversed to embrace clean energy and conservation, instead of, for example, following tabloid-type political 'economic' motives as was done when closing down 'relatively efficient' coal mines 20 years ago against the practical advice of civil engineers in the industry.

The sooner we get on with points 1-2-3 below, the better: 1. Energy conservation to reduce gas and coal usage and consequent emissions 2. Heat recovery and re-use, 3. Adequate subsidy to increase uptake of local generation via roof-top wind and solar resources as well as off-shore wind.

Come on engineers! We only have to reduce emissions by 10% to achieve the target set at Rio in 1992. With good education, we don't have to follow some endless demand curve maintained by accountants. Rather we can educate ourselves and others.

Ian Greenwood, 67 Trafalgar Rd, Moseley, B13 8BL

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