President Barack Obama’s energy speech at MIT could have focused a bit more on nuclear energy. But he intended to cover a lot of bases and clearly did that. He noted the green jobs created by the stimulus bill, he called for bipartisanship in crafting the climate change bill in the Senate, he paid appropriate homage to the innovation and accomplishments of schools like MIT. So the actual energy portion of the speech was just that – a portion – and nuclear references, like others, were made in passing.
So let’s see what he said about nuclear energy and give you a taste of the speech:
Everybody in America should have a stake in legislation that can transform our energy system into one that's far more efficient, far cleaner, and provide energy independence for America -- making the best use of resources we have in abundance, everything from figuring out how to use the fossil fuels that inevitably we are going to be using for several decades, things like coal and oil and natural gas; figuring out how we use those as cleanly and efficiently as possible; creating safe nuclear power; sustainably grown biofuels; and then the energy that we can harness from wind and the waves and the sun. It is a transformation that will be made as swiftly and as carefully as possible, to ensure that we are doing what it takes to grow this economy in the short, medium, and long term. And I do believe that a consensus is growing to achieve exactly that.
So there’s that. And:
This is the nation that harnessed electricity and the energy contained in the atom, that developed the steamboat and the modern solar cell. This is the nation that pushed westward and looked skyward.
In its context, Obama is here rejecting the notion that nothing can be done about climate change – that we can do anything we set our minds to doing.
You can read the rest of the speech here.