Skip to main content

NEI Applauds DOE Budget Request

NEI said in a statment it was generally satisfied with the Energy Department's budget request for fiscal 2009 announced yesterday. The DOE request would increase funding by 79 percent next year for Nuclear Power 2010, a program aimed at helping companies build new nuclear power plants in the United States.

Nuclear Energy Institute President and Chief Executive Officer Frank L. (Skip) Bowman said the budget request properly recognizes the need for nuclear energy to remain a key element of the nation’s diverse electricity portfolio for generations to come.

“Nuclear energy enhances our energy independence, and new nuclear power plants are essential if the United States hopes to meet its energy and environmental challenges. The promise of nuclear energy technology extends beyond electricity production to include production of hydrogen and process heat for other applications,” Bowman said. “For these reasons, the administration’s investment in the Nuclear Power 2010 program, the used fuel management program and the loan guarantee program are welcome and warranted."

“The administration correctly anticipates a new era of nuclear plant construction as part of a diverse electricity production mix that meets the need for clean, affordable and reliable energy,” Bowman said.

However, the Nuclear Power 2010 funding was only a small part of DOE's $25 billion budget request.

Wired's online version said the request was "optimistic" but wondered whether it was "plausible."

Comments

Nuclear no doubt is an issue of energy security for the USA as the largest economy in the world, and it needs mere budget financing for sure. However one mistake politicians often make when dealing with nuclear issues is considering only one or several stages of nuclear cycle while skipping others, like building new plants and uranium enrichment facilities, and forgetting about nuclear waste, in particular its storage and recycling. Are those considered in the budget as well?
Starvid said…
What about the loan guarantees? Did we get the entire $50 billion package?

(Which is not a subsidy as not a single dime will be payed out btw).
Rod Adams said…
Alexandra:
Here is the answer to your question quoted from the DOE page regarding the budget specifics:

Office of Nuclear Energy ($1.4 billion)
The Office of Nuclear Energy FY 2009 budget requests $1.4 billion,
This request includes
$301.5 million for one of the key nuclear priorities, the Advanced Fuel Cycle Initiative which supports research and development activities focused on reducing the volume and toxicity of high-level waste and spent nuclear fuel through recycling. To address the immediate need for nuclear power expansion domestically, the
$241.6 million for Nuclear Power 2010 program to support industry cost-shared, near-term technology development and licensing demonstration activities.
$70 million to continue the development of next-generation nuclear energy systems known as “Generation IV” and will focus on long-term research and development of a gas-cooled very-high temperature reactor through the Next Generation Nuclear Plant project.
$487 million for the MOX Fuel Fabrication Facility, a key component of the nation’s nuclear nonproliferation efforts.

Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management ($494.7 million)
$494.7 million, a $108 million increase over the FY 2008 appropriation, to further plans for the licensing and construction of a permanent nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain.

I compute $1.3 Billion for nuclear waste storage and recycling efforts and just $310 for fission reactor development efforts.

IMHO, at least $450 million of the waste storage efforts will go down the Yucca Mountain rat hole and not result in the storage of a single kilogram of used fuel.

Popular posts from this blog

How Nanomaterials Can Make Nuclear Reactors Safer and More Efficient

The following is a guest post from Matt Wald, senior communications advisor at NEI. Follow Matt on Twitter at @MattLWald.

From the batteries in our cell phones to the clothes on our backs, "nanomaterials" that are designed molecule by molecule are working their way into our economy and our lives. Now there’s some promising work on new materials for nuclear reactors.

Reactors are a tough environment. The sub atomic particles that sustain the chain reaction, neutrons, are great for splitting additional uranium atoms, but not all of them hit a uranium atom; some of them end up in various metal components of the reactor. The metal is usually a crystalline structure, meaning it is as orderly as a ladder or a sheet of graph paper, but the neutrons rearrange the atoms, leaving some infinitesimal voids in the structure and some areas of extra density. The components literally grow, getting longer and thicker. The phenomenon is well understood and designers compensate for it with a …

Missing the Point about Pennsylvania’s Nuclear Plants

A group that includes oil and gas companies in Pennsylvania released a study on Monday that argues that twenty years ago, planners underestimated the value of nuclear plants in the electricity market. According to the group, that means the state should now let the plants close.

Huh?

The question confronting the state now isn’t what the companies that owned the reactors at the time of de-regulation got or didn’t get. It’s not a question of whether they were profitable in the '80s, '90s and '00s. It’s about now. Business works by looking at the present and making projections about the future.

Is losing the nuclear plants what’s best for the state going forward?

Pennsylvania needs clean air. It needs jobs. And it needs protection against over-reliance on a single fuel source.


What the reactors need is recognition of all the value they provide. The electricity market is depressed, and if electricity is treated as a simple commodity, with no regard for its benefit to clean air o…

Why Nuclear Plant Closures Are a Crisis for Small Town USA

Nuclear plants occupy an unusual spot in the towns where they operate: integral but so much in the background that they may seem almost invisible. But when they close, it can be like the earth shifting underfoot.

Lohud.com, the Gannett newspaper that covers the Lower Hudson Valley in New York, took a look around at the experience of towns where reactors have closed, because the Indian Point reactors in Buchanan are scheduled to be shut down under an agreement with Gov. Mario Cuomo.


From sea to shining sea, it was dismal. It wasn’t just the plant employees who were hurt. The losses of hundreds of jobs, tens of millions of dollars in payrolls and millions in property taxes depressed whole towns and surrounding areas. For example:

Vernon, Vermont, home to Vermont Yankee for more than 40 years, had to cut its municipal budget in half. The town closed its police department and let the county take over; the youth sports teams lost their volunteer coaches, and Vernon Elementary School lost th…