Not everyone’s bearish on uranium mining stocks in 2011

Work on new nuclear power plants is moving quietly ahead regardless of the media, and that means we might not see uranium mining stocks this cheap for a long time.

The nuclear disaster in Japan has governments and citizens around the world re-evaluating their energy sources, and that’s led to a mass exodus out of uranium mining stocks. The Global X Uranium ETF (NYSE:URA), which invests in uranium mining stocks, has fallen more than 21 percent in the month since the reactor damage in Japan.

Still, some investors and writers are calling the sell-off a buying opportunity as there are few realistic alternatives to nuclear power – particularly as countries try to green up their energy supplies and decrease dependence on foreign commodities.

Jeb Handwerger at blames the media for creating hysteria in the space, and he offers several examples of what’s NOT being reported (and why that bodes well for the future of nuclear power):

  • The U.S. Navy has operated nuclear-powered submarines and aircraft carriers for more than 50 years without a major incident
  • Fossil fuel pollution poses substantially more health risks than nuclear power (barring the effects of natural disasters and/or other problems at reactor sites)
  • Japan’s Fukushima reactor was running on nearly out-dated technology, and the reactor itself was two weeks away from its 40-year expiration date at the time of the tsunami
  • Today’s stringent standards for nuclear power plants make them 1,600 times safer than plants that are several decades old
  • U.S. nuclear regulators gave the go-ahead for the construction of two new nuclear plants near Augusta, Georgia, after the Fukushima disaster

Like it or not, 57 percent of the U.S. energy supply comes from coal and petroleum, according to the United States Energy Information Administration. Nuclear power chips in 9 percent and renewable power sources chip in just 8 percent.

If the U.S. – and every economy around the world, for that matter – hopes to become more energy independent, uranium will have to play to a role. It may take a few years for that to come out in the media, but work on new nuclear power plants is moving quietly ahead regardless.



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