# Nuclear energy factlets and calculations

Here are a number of interesting factlets about nuclear energy, including details of the calculations.

How much nuclear waste would you make if you got 100% of your electricity from nuclear power?

• If you got 100% of your electricity from today's nuclear power plants for your entire lifetime, you'd be responsible for 8.7 floz of nuclear waste; less than 1 soda can
• If you got 100% of your electricity from special breeder nuclear plants for your entire lifetime, you'd be responsible for 0.83 floz of nuclear waste; less than a tenth of a soda can.

How much coal/gas/oil matches the energy of a single nuclear fuel pellet?

• One nuclear fuel pellet used in a normal reactor contains the same amount of energy as 1.3 tons of coal, 250 gallons of oil, 34,000 cubic feet of natural gas, and 0.9 tons of charged lithium ion batteries
• One nuclear fuel pellet used in a breeder reactor contains the same amount of energy as 22 tons of coal, 4350 gallons of oil, 590,000 cubic feet of natural gas, and 16 tons of charged lithium ion batteries

How much CO₂ is avoided by each individual cask of nuclear waste?

• Each dry cask of nuclear waste represents 2 million tonnes of CO₂ that weren't emitted.

How much nuclear waste is there?

• All the spent nuclear fuel in the USA would fit on a football field in fully-shielded dry casks stacked 135 meters (148 yards) high.
• All the spent nuclear fuel in the USA would fit on a football field stacked as pellets 3 meter (3.3 yards) high
• All the fission products in spent nuclear fuel in the USA would fit on a football field stacked 15 cm (5.9 inches) high

How many households would generate one 55-gallon drum of nuclear waste?

• If a 55-gallon drum was actually filled with spent fuel, it would have generated enough electricity to power 60,000 average US households for a year.
• If a 55-gallon drum was actually filled with spent fuel, it would represent 55 million lbs of CO₂ that didn't get emitted.

How much energy is contained in existing US nuclear waste?

• Existing US nuclear waste could generate 100% of US electricity for 160 years (given a fleet of breeder reactors)
• Existing US nuclear waste could generate 100% of world electricity for 25 years
• Existing US nuclear waste contains about 6670 exajoules of energy, or about 11 years of total world primary energy.