After reading an article in the Boston Globe on the possibility of rolling blackouts in New England, my friend Chris Lynch had this to say:
1. At no point in the article do the words "nuclear energy" appear. Nuclear power is the cheapest and cleanest power available but a nuclear boogey man exists which clouds common sense out of people's minds. It should have been at least been mentioned as an option.I can understand my friend's frustration with the current situation in the Northeastern U.S. when it comes to electric power generation. The best description of what's happening now that I've read comes from Geoffrey Styles, who wrote the following a little less than two weeks ago:
2. This "we need to conserve" is a sham. Yes we need to conserve just on basic principle (good old Yankee "waste not - want not" - the environment, etc), however, the power companies want to raise prices and they will this summer (and may even have a few rolling blackouts just to make it look good).
First, there's the inherent incompatibility of economic growth facilitated by increasing energy consumption with regulatory policies that make it extremely difficult to build new energy facilities near population centers. This is compounded by the sort of NIMBY-ism that takes no account of the economic benefits of the facility in question. Add to this the current strain of unprioritized environmental concern, and you have a recipe for disaster.UPDATE: Chris responds:
You can't have economic growth without addressing energy concerns and you can't be an Al Gore environmentalist without eventually embracing nuclear energy. You can feel good about yourself driving to work in your hybrid car but what good is that if your workplace is fueled by coal-burning plants? It is time to stop being ampere wise and kilowatt foolish.Technorati tags: Nuclear Energy, Environment, Energy, Politics, Technology, Economics