Skip to main content

A Bipartisan Push on Nuclear Energy

6a00d834527dd469e2011572101b67970b-500wi Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) co-wrote an op-ed for the New York Times demonstrating that distinguished gentlemen from opposite ends of the ideological spectrum can agree on a few things. Like what, for example?

Second, while we invest in renewable energy sources like wind and solar, we must also take advantage of nuclear power, our single largest contributor of emissions-free power. Nuclear power needs to be a core component of electricity generation if we are to meet our emission reduction targets. We need to jettison cumbersome regulations that have stalled the construction of nuclear plants in favor of a streamlined permit system that maintains vigorous safeguards while allowing utilities to secure financing for more plants. We must also do more to encourage serious investment in research and development to find solutions to our nuclear waste problem.

Incidentally, the first point is that they agree that global warming is real – and the third point is that the Kerry-Boxer climate change bill is a good opportunity to enhance energy security. And there’s a fourth point about not exporting jobs overseas. You can read the article for all that. They’re good points all, but even with our slant, we’d have to say the nuclear provisions are by far the most noteworthy because they indicate what Kerry and Graham find necessary for the legislation to fulfill its goals.

If there’s any downside at all, it’s that nuclear energy is given such a key spot because Kerry and Graham think it might be a harder sell that its renewable cousins. We’ve shown many times that polls (and from firms like Gallup) indicate that nuclear really isn’t that tough a sell. But that’s okay – Kerry and Graham do make the case, they’ve declared themselves publically, and they’re key to the legislation. We’ll take it with bells on.

A true bipartisan barn burner.

We feature Sen. Kerry last week. Here’s his co-writer, Sen. Lindsey Graham.


Phil H said…
Ug. They mention "clean coal" as if it's even remotely possible to clean up that disastrous rock. Even if carbon sequestration could be made to work economically and reliably (and I predict that carbon reliable economical sequestration will come online about the same time as the Jetsons' flying cars), show me the "clean coal" mountaintop removal mine. How about the "clean" slurry pond.

Unless we stop entertaining such OBVIOUS horrible unworkable ideas and get serious we're not going to make any progress on climate change or nuclear power expansion.
gman said…
Read Jeff Goodell's book "Big Coal" to find out why politicians entertain such ideas...
Phil H said…
Excellent recommendation gman. Great book. I second the recommendation.

Popular posts from this blog

A Billion Miles Under Nuclear Energy (Updated)

And the winner is…Cassini-Huygens, in triple overtime.

The spaceship conceived in 1982 and launched fifteen years later, will crash into Saturn on September 15, after a mission of 19 years and 355 days, powered by the audacity and technical prowess of scientists and engineers from 17 different countries, and 72 pounds of plutonium.

The mission was so successful that it was extended three times; it was intended to last only until 2008.

Since April, the ship has been continuing to orbit Saturn, swinging through the 1,500-mile gap between the planet and its rings, an area not previously explored. This is a good maneuver for a spaceship nearing the end of its mission, since colliding with a rock could end things early.

Cassini will dive a little deeper and plunge toward Saturn’s surface, where it will transmit data until it burns up in the planet’s atmosphere. The radio signal will arrive here early Friday morning, Eastern time. A NASA video explains.

In the years since Cassini has launc…

Sneak Peek

There's an invisible force powering and propelling our way of life.
It's all around us. You can't feel it. Smell it. Or taste it.
But it's there all the same. And if you look close enough, you can see all the amazing and wondrous things it does.
It not only powers our cities and towns.
And all the high-tech things we love.
It gives us the power to invent.
To explore.
To discover.
To create advanced technologies.
This invisible force creates jobs out of thin air.
It adds billions to our economy.
It's on even when we're not.
And stays on no matter what Mother Nature throws at it.
This invisible force takes us to the outer reaches of outer space.
And to the very depths of our oceans.
It brings us together. And it makes us better.
And most importantly, it has the power to do all this in our lifetime while barely leaving a trace.
Some people might say it's kind of unbelievable.
They wonder, what is this new power that does all these extraordinary things?

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.


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…