Skip to main content

Show 'Em It's Not a Knee-Jerk

Last Thursday, Eric reported on the nuclear debate in Canada, but he missed what I thought was the most interesting part of the article.

The reporter said that there is a ...
[N]uance creeping into the language of some environmentalists who are still far from sold on nuclear power. Even David Suzuki, the public face and living patron saint of the Canadian green movement, has raised eyebrows by declaring in at least two broadcast interviews that he doesn't take a "knee-jerk" position against nuclear energy, although he remains, for now at least, firmly opposed.

In an email exchange with Maclean's, Suzuki explained his position.

"I don't say unequivocally that nuclear is not an option. It may very well be sometime in the future," he wrote. "But right now, I think it's nuts to even suggest nuclear.
It seems that I have heard a lot of similar talk south of the border. Antis want to appear to be open to reason. But to say that "it's nuts to even suggest nuclear" rather spoils the effect.

So here is some advice to anti-nukes. If you want to show people how open you are to reason, tell them about the splendid safety record of nuclear power plants, about how small the related carbon emissions are, how the radiation workers in the plants are healthier than the population as a whole, and how the volume of spent fuel is so small that power plants can (and do!) keep decades worth on site.

Mention that some countries recycle the fuel. And, of course, be sure to mention the low-cost, reliable electric power. If you do that, people will know that your opposition is not a knee-jerk reaction. Then leave your comments here so everyone will know how your message is received.

I'll be waiting.

Comments

Joffan said…
The David Suzuki Foundation has a fairly reflexive "anti" position on nuclear power, with misleading statements and lopsided analysis. I was wondering whether some correspondence with Dr Suzuki would shift their position at least to neutral (although perhaps there is no such position).
Anonymous said…
I can appreciate the dilemma faced by the environmental movement. Logic, reason, and practicality has never been their strong suite. The issues of global warming and Nuclear power vs. fossil fuel usage presents them a real credibility challenge. I'm delighted to see continuing evidence of an internal debate and a self examination of their anti-nuclear dogma. Maybe these are baby steps, but for once they may be headed in the right direction. Give'm another 6 months, and maybe they will start to invite US to join with THEM? I'm always optimistic.

--Bill Vidalin

Popular posts from this blog

Making Clouds for a Living

Donell Banks works at Southern Nuclear’s Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 as a shift supervisor in Operations, but is in the process of transitioning to his newly appointed role as the daily work controls manager. He has been in the nuclear energy industry for about 11 years.

I love what I do because I have the unique opportunity to help shape the direction and influence the culture for the future of nuclear power in the United States. Every single day presents a new challenge, but I wouldn't have it any other way. As a shift supervisor, I was primarily responsible for managing the development of procedures and programs to support operation of the first new nuclear units in the United States in more than 30 years. As the daily work controls manager, I will be responsible for oversight of the execution and scheduling of daily work to ensure organizational readiness to operate the new units.

I envision a nuclear energy industry that leverages the technology of today to improve efficiency…

Nuclear: Energy for All Political Seasons

The electoral college will soon confirm a surprise election result, Donald Trump. However, in the electricity world, there are fewer surprises – physics and economics will continue to apply, and Republicans and Democrats are going to find a lot to like about nuclear energy over the next four years.

In a Trump administration, the carbon conversation is going to be less prominent. But the nuclear value proposition is still there. We bring steady jobs to rural areas, including in the Rust Belt, which put Donald Trump in office. Nuclear plants keep the surrounding communities vibrant.

We hold down electricity costs for the whole economy. We provide energy diversity, reducing the risk of disruption. We are a critical part of America’s industrial infrastructure, and the importance of infrastructure is something that President-Elect Trump has stressed.

One of our infrastructure challenges is natural gas pipelines, which have gotten more congested as extremely low gas prices have pulled m…

Innovation Fuels the Nuclear Legacy: Southern Nuclear Employees Share Their Stories

Blake Bolt and Sharimar Colon are excited about nuclear energy. Each works at Southern Nuclear Co. and sees firsthand how their ingenuity powers the nation’s largest supply of clean energy. For Powered by Our People, they shared their stories of advocacy, innovation in the workplace and efforts to promote efficiency. Their passion for nuclear energy casts a bright future for the industry.

Blake Bolt has worked in the nuclear industry for six years and is currently the work week manager at Hatch Nuclear Plant in Georgia. He takes pride in an industry he might one day pass on to his children.

What is your job and why do you enjoy doing it?
As a Work Week Manager at Plant Hatch, my primary responsibility is to ensure nuclear safety and manage the risk associated with work by planning, scheduling, preparing and executing work to maximize the availability and reliability of station equipment and systems. I love my job because it enables me to work directly with every department on the plant…