Monday, July 18, 2005

Another newspaper in favor of nuclear power

In today's edition of USA Today, in an editorial titled "Former Critics See the Light," the paper discusses what NEI Nuclear Notes has been saying since this blog started:

The nuclear power industry has some surprising new friends: environmentalists.
The editorial goes on to highlight many of the things that the industry has been saying for a long time, including that nuclear power is back. As the piece wraps up it gives another endorsement for the industry's plan to deal with spent fuel by stating the following:
That debate needs to end. Yucca Mountain is the only viable storage site.

Twenty-six years after Three Mile Island, it's time for the nation to update its thinking about nuclear energy. If more reliable and cleaner energy is the goal, nuclear power has to be part of the solution.
We could not agree more.

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Paul Gunter said...

Not surprising for a pro-nuke blog you forgot to post the counterpoint article that USA Today invited from NIRS and appeared on the same page as the editorial:

USA Today
July 15, 2005 Page 13A

Still dangerous, impractical
Terrorism adds to reasons why U.S. shouldn't resume going nuclear.

By Michael Mariotte

Without a single viable reactor order since October 1973, the nuclear power industry has been moribund for decades. Left to market forces and public opinion, nuclear power would continue on its deserved road to oblivion. And nothing has changed to make nuclear power more attractive:

•It continues to be the most dangerous method ever devised to produce electricity.

•A scientifically defensible radioactive waste program continues to elude the United States and every other nuclear nation.

•Building more nuclear reactors would simply add tempting new terrorist targets across the country.

Donating billions of taxpayer dollars to the nuclear industry — already the most heavily subsidized energy industry over the past 50 years — would provide further confirmation that private investment already has rejected this obsolete technology. If nuclear power, a mature technology by any definition, cannot make it on its own, why should taxpayers have to shoulder a burden that Wall Street has spurned?

Nuclear power's possible role in addressing climate change has been vastly overstated. The nuclear fuel chain is not free of greenhouse gas emissions and, according to several studies, to make even a modest difference in emissions (a 20% or so reduction) would require a nuclear program of incredible magnitude: in the United States alone the construction of some 300 new reactors.

If we started today, that would be one every two months for the next 50 years at a cost of hundreds of billions of dollars, increased risk of meltdown and the need for several new Yucca Mountain-size radioactive waste sites and proliferation-prone uranium enrichment plants. It's an impossible, and undesirable, task and could not be accomplished in time to prevent global warming.

Diverting our resources to nuclear power now would only prevent the deployment of those underfunded energy technologies that really can make a difference at far less cost, such as improved energy efficiency, wind, solar, non-nuclear hydrogen and better electrical transmission systems.

The issue is not whether we should use nuclear power to address climate change: the choice is to use nuclear power or address climate change. The Earth demands that we choose the latter course.

Michael Mariotte is executive director of Nuclear Information and Resource Service, an anti-nuclear power group.

Find this article at:

Paul Gunter said...

The editorial and Op Ed appeared in USA Today Monday, July 18, 2005

DV8 2XL said...

Not surprisingly Mr. Mariotte, who must practice dissemination even down to the name of his organization: the “Nuclear Information and Resource Service, parrots the same tired arguments that his kind have been making a living off for the last forty years.

Sir, I would like you to back your assertions and accusations with current facts whose veracity can be checked. I would also like you to prove your claims first; hanging statements out and demanding they be proved wrong is a rhetorical attack which carries no weight with any thinking person.