The nation that invented pet rocks, made Paris Hilton a star and loves reality TV reminds us that everybody has, among other things, an opinion:Americans favor nuclear energy
Ben Lando, January 26, 2007 (UPI)
- A new UPI/Zogby International interactive poll found most Americans support more nuclear plants to power the country…
- A prominent nuclear opponent, however, says nuclear power is both dangerous and expensive and will detract from renewable energy…
- 61.8 percent either "strongly agree" or "somewhat agree" that new nuclear plants should be built. Another 29.1 percent either "somewhat disagree or strongly disagree" …
- Of those who agreed new plants should be built, 63.1 percent said they would "support" a plant build in their community, 14.4 would "oppose" a plant in their community and 22.5 percent were not sure…
- There are 103 nuclear reactors at 65 nuclear plants feeding about 20 percent of U.S. electricity demand. There has not been a new reactor licensed since 1979 and with U.S. energy demand increasing, nuclear's share will decrease if new plants aren't built. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission expects about seven new reactor applications in 2007, eight in 2008 and a total of more than 30 in the coming half decade…
- …nuclear power is being looked at while the somewhat turbulent oil and natural gas prices reached record highs recently and the threat of climate change has become more widely accepted…
- As part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the nuclear industry was given federally backed insurance against regulatory process delays and indemnification from nuclear incident liability, tax credits, and federal loans for the first applications to traverse the NRC's new combined construction and license permitting process.
- Nuclear Power 2010 and the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership are also two Bush programs designed to spur the U.S. industry…
- 50 percent of those polled gave Bush's energy policy a "poor" rating and 63.1 percent either "somewhat disagree" or "strongly disagree" it "will meet our needs in the coming decades."
- …a 2000 report by the Renewable Energy Policy Project that said nuclear energy received $145.4 billion of the $151 billion in federal subsidies doled out to "electricity-generating technologies (excluding hydropower)" between 1943 and 1999. Wind, solar and other renewable energy sources can't compete…
- The poll found 62.7 percent "somewhat agree" or "strongly agree" nuclear power is safe, though most trust state and local governments (which have little safety oversight) more than the federal government to ensure nuclear plants are safe. The energy industry received the lowest marks.A masterly profile of what we're dealing with:Industry on verge of rebound
Mike Stuckey, January 23, 2007 (MSNBC)
- Buoyed by billions of dollars in subsidies pushed through Congress by the Bush administration, the U.S. nuclear power industry says 2007 is the year its plans for a “renaissance” will reach critical mass…The nuclear renaissance man
Mike Stuckey, January 24, 2007 (MSNBC)
- On a cool morning last August, the senior U.S. senator from New Mexico hefted a shovel of desert earth and…[dedicated] a $1.5 billion uranium enrichment facility in his state's southeast corner…If the renaissance that the U.S. nuclear power industry predicts for itself is indeed occurring, then Pietro “Pete” Vichy Domenici, the son of Italian immigrants, may be seen as both its Michelango and its Machiavelli. And the New Mexico uranium plant is just one piece of deft political artwork the conservative Republican has brought to a nuclear industry that has showered him with praise — and hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions…Reality check for cartel plan
Mike Stuckey, January 24, 2007 (MSNBC)
- …Piketon is one of 11 communities recently awarded a total of $16 million in study grants by the U.S. Department of Energy. The grants are to be used to determine if they would be suitable sites for the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership, or GNEP, a hotly debated proposal that proponents promise will change the world.
- Unveiled by the Bush administration early last year, GNEP envisions a system in which developing nations would receive nuclear power plants and fuel from the West in return for agreeing not to develop their own nuclear technology. The plan hinges on the controversial element of reprocessing spent nuclear rods to produce fuel that can be burned at GNEP plants, an activity that has never been done commercially in the United States…supporters say not only will it power up the Third World, it will boost the U.S. nuclear industry, greatly reduce nuclear waste and air pollution and avoid the further spread of nuclear weapons.
- Opponents say the program has the same problem as conventional nuclear power: It’s impossibly expensive. But it’s GNEP’s added element of nuclear fuel reprocessing, shelved for more than 30 years as unsafe and unnecessary in the United States, that really inflames critics…The French connection
Mike Stuckey, January 25, 2007 (MSNBC)
- With help from the allies it funds in Congress and legions of highly paid lobbyists, the U.S. nuclear power industry won billions of dollars in tax breaks and subsidies for its promised “renaissance.” But the biggest winner of all could be a French firm that most Americans have never heard of.
- That’s because Areva, an atomic energy giant owned by the French government, appears to be better positioned than any of its competitors to benefit from growth in the U.S. nuclear industry and increased federal spending on it… Does nuclear power now make financial sense?
John W. Schoen, January 26, 2007 (MSNBC)
- …Now, nearly three decades after the last new plant was approved, proponents of nuclear power say the economics of atom-splitting energy have dramatically improved. In fact, they argue, financial forces have become a driving force behind a new enthusiasm for nuclear energy as the power industry scrambles to meet growing demand for electricity with an aging fleet of generating stations.
- But the industry still needs to raise tens of billions of dollars before the proposed round of new plants can be built. That means persuading Wall Street investors to put up the money and state utility regulators to bless the higher rates needed to pay for these multi-billion-dollar projects…A reminder: GE owns NBC (and MSNBC) and is a major player in the power industry, owning all kinds of energy, including nuclear.