It should come as no surprise that environmentalists oppose the use of nuclear energy in the same way they oppose coal or the fracking technology that is unlocking huge new reserves of natural gas. Currently nuclear energy provides about twenty percent of the electricity used in the U.S. Their attack on coal—led by the Obama administration—has driven its use down from just over fifty percent a few years ago to about 47% today.
Not to mention the rise of natural gas. But you’ve got to take your triumphs as they come.
[Holger] Arntzen is now project manager of Wind Comm, a nonprofit that supports wind farm development. For him, the key to stopping the backlash against the power lines is to do more to inform Germans that the nuclear phase out comes with a price and changes in lifestyle.
"To show what is possible, and how I, as a citizen, can influence the load on the grid, like putting on my dishwasher only when the sun shines, because we have a lot of photovoltaics. Or waiting on my dishwasher if we have no wind," he says. "People must accept that the post-nuclear phase has a direct impact on how I live, how they live."
Here’s hoping Arntzen, the wind and his dishwasher stay synced or he’ll be eating off the floor in no time.
From Andy Lemke at Forbes, providing a primer on issues around nuclear energy.
At the time of this writing, nuclear energy has support from both Democrats and Republicans in the United States. While it isn’t a partisan issue, it is generally divided by those well informed on the topic and those who are uninformed. Between those who trust the scientists / engineers and those who do not. Between those who are reasonable vs. general skeptics.
A pro-nuclear energy writer trying really hard to be even handed. (still good and he’s right - nuclear energy lost its partisan flavor some time ago.)