Thursday, May 12, 2005

Nuclear Energy Debate at Sustainablog

Yesterday, I had a very cordial email exchange with Jeff Strasburg of Sustainablog on the new support nuclear energy is getting from some prominent folks in the environmental movement. In particular, I passed along some details from Patrick Moore's congressional testimony that I thought were pertinent:

"Nuclear energy is the only non-greenhouse-gas-emitting power source that can effectively replace fossil fuels and satisfy global demand," Moore told the US House of Representatives Subcommittee on Energy and Resources in Washington, DC.

"There is now a great deal of scientific evidence showing nuclear power to be an environmentally sound and safe choice," Moore said. Moore believes his former colleagues at Greenpeace are unrealistic in their call for a phasing out of both coal and nuclear power worldwide, as they have called for in Ontario, for example.

"There are simply not enough available forms of alternative energy to replace both of them together. Given a choice between nuclear on the one hand and coal, oil and natural gas on the other, nuclear energy is by far the best option as it emits neither CO2 nor any other air pollutants."

As a result, Jeff is throwing things open to his readers, asking them what they think of nuclear energy:
Rather than go into a tirade (as I'm sometimes prone to do), I'd like to open up the debate: should we seriously consider ramping up production of nuclear power in response to the threats posed by climate change?

As we saw last month in the prominent environmental pub, Grist, this is a debate that the global environmental movement is beginning to have, and it's all to the better.

So stop by and let him know what you think. And thanks to Jeff for being open to talking to us.

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2 comments:

Jeff McIntire-Strasburg said...

Eric--
Thank you for getting the conversation started. While we're clearly on different sides of the fence on nuclear power, we have to discuss energy production and consumption in this country -- we can't continue on the path we're on.

Thanks again, and look forward to hearing from your readers.

VernCornell said...

Eric:
I am for building a lot of 1000 MW reactors around the country. These fit the scenario of reducing CO2, which Kyoto is all about, for the moment. But I don't think I'll trust the theory that gobal warming is bad, even if it is occuring, for a while.
Vern