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"The Solar Industry Doesn't Need the Sierra Club."

The quote of the day that's getting passed around this morning at NEI comes from Suzzanne Shelton of the Shelton Group. She was in attendance last week at Fortune's Brainstorm Green 2014, and shared her top five takeaways from the conference on her blog before the start of the long holiday weekend.


Not surprisingly, this aside involved Mike Shellenberger of the Breakthrough Institute and his ongoing struggle to get other environmentalists to understand that constraining carbon emissions and keeping the lights on is going to mean relying on a diverse set of energy sources that includes nuclear energy:
The solar industry doesn't need the Sierra Club. There was a very interesting point/counterpoint discussion between Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, and Michael Shellenberger, president of the Breakthrough Institute. It appears the two men are/were friends, and Shellenberger was practically doing an on-stage intervention with Brune, begging him to stop embarrassing himself by being so quixotically focused on supporting only solar and wind as the way forward, without consideration at all for natural gas in the short term and nuclear in the long term. Based on other panel discussions (and what we're seeing in market data), renewables are doing really, really well and will continue to do well. So perhaps it's time for the Sierra Club to focus its considerable energy on another fight.
As long-time readers of NEI Nuclear Notes know, this isn't the first time someone has petitioned the Sierra Club to come to the table to discuss practical solutions to environmental challenges. Nope, not at all.

UPDATE: Thanks to Jessica Lovering of The Breakthrough Institute, we've got the link to the video of the exchange between Shellenberger and Michael Brune of the Sierra Club:



For more, please visit The Breakthrough Institute.

Comments

jimwg said…
Maybe the real question is, would the solar and wind camps ever declare in one breath that we need nuclear to at least take up their slack on still windless nights? Unless they say THAT, it doesn't matter what green groups they're having hissy-fits with, they're still anti-nuke.

James Greenidge
Queens NY
Solar advocates pretend to be concerned about the relatively tiny amount of toxic waste produced from spent fuel by the nuclear industry yet the production of photovoltaics produces tens of thousands of times more toxic waste than the nuclear industry.

http://www.thingsworsethannuclearpower.com/2012/09/the-real-waste-problem-solar-edition.html

Marcel
jimwg said…
If "Nuclear Matters" (http://www.nuclearmatters.com) wishes to make a difference in stemming the tide of nuclear plant closures it's going to have to steer off the well-beaten futile path to Capital Hill. My first question to them: How large is your mass nuclear publicity and education till and how can your supporters directly contribute to IT? Two, what types of mass media nuclear education programs do you have in mind and when and what (Ad) agency is performing it? Deuce Sweet. Forget the seemingly logical path of "enlightening" or buttering up politicians to our side; You have to be pragmatically street-wise here and take the "Mad Men" route here -- directly hit the FUD-drenched public with your pitch, NOT after wallflower politicians who will just follow where the public wind blows. You have to stem the breach and bleeding antis inflict by hitting FUD back with hard-core adult nuclear education at the same volume the antis have successfully plied theirs. Blogs are very noble efforts but Kellogg and General Motors and other corporations never scored their mega sales or product recognition this way-- only mass media education will do, and the media's grass-roots battleground for minds and reason is where the fight for fact over fear and truth over lies must be fought. Nuclear Matters, don't avail a tired old road -- unclueless and educate a skittish public who don't know the difference between a solar system and a galaxy about nuclear power! Mass media nuclear education Ads is the way to go! I can't afford much but I'll splurge it to you IF I knew that's exactly where my contribution's going!

James Greenidge
Queens NY
Dan Williamson said…
Along those lines, has NEI ever lobbied Showtime or HBO to air "Pandora's Promise?" Those outlets seem perfectly willing to air documentary films....mainly of a leftward tilt. What does it take to get that done?
Dan Williamson said…
Hmmmm....I guess that CAN'T be done.

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