Nuclear power is the use of sustained nuclear fission to generate heat and electricity. Nuclear power plants provide about 6% of the world's energy and 1314% of the world's electricity, with the U.S., France, and Japan together accounting for about 50% of nuclear generated electricity. In 2007, the IAEA reported there were 439 nuclear power reactors in operation in the world, operating in 31 countries. Also, more than 150 naval vessels using nuclear propulsion have been built. There is an ongoing debate about the use of nuclear energy. Proponents, such as the World Nuclear Association, the IAEA and Environmentalists for Nuclear Energy contend that nuclear power is a sustainable energy source that reduces carbon emissions. Opponents, such as Greenpeace International and NIRS, believe that nuclear power poses many threats to people and the environment.
Contributions by Ultramarine, Benjamin Gatti, and Zen-master.