Nuclear Energy, Not Unreliables, Is the Solution to Climate Change
By Andrea Jennetta, Publisher
June 25 2013
After listening to President Obama’s speech and reading the broad outline of his administration’s plan on climate change, FCW publisher Andrea Jennetta was angry enough to post a comment on the White House web site expressing her disgust at its refusal to accept that nuclear energy IS the answer. She wants other Democrats and her colleagues in the global nuclear industry to read what she wrote—and hopefully be inspired to take action and let their own voices be heard. The bottom line is that nuclear energy will only be part of the discussion if we in the nuclear industry speak up and out to make it happen.
I’m a lifelong Democrat. I’ve worked in the U.S. nuclear industry 25 of my 47 years on planet Earth. And I want to say that the focus on renewables to the near exclusion of nuclear energy in the climate change plan President Obama unveiled today is groundless and gutless.
While unreliables resonate with a specific wing of the Democratic party they cannot power a modern economy. Unlike nuclear energy, solar and wind are fraught with innumerable technical and economic problems. You know it and I know it. And the anti-nuclear “environmentalists” know it, too, even if they can’t—or won’t—admit it.
It is time to stop pandering to those elements in the base and start educating the American people on the realities of the modern electricity grid, “the dangers” of radiation, the amount of CO2 emitted by “clean burning” natural gas and the plain truth that energy consumption is increasing so fast that conservation and efficiency isn’t enough.
The bottom line is that Democrats, the so-called party of science, need to get a grip and get leading on nuclear energy—not wasting time and resources on intermittent technologies that blow billions of dollars, wreak havoc on the economics of deregulated power markets and send Wall Street running for cover.
Moreover, this ridiculous, fantasy-based approach to fighting climate change sends the wrong message to developing countries, where access to reliable, inexpensive and clean energy sources like nuclear power are literally matters of life and death.
Nuclear energy is the solution, people. All of its so-called problems are political, not technical. But real leadership is needed to solve those problems. What was announced today is a series of colorful graphics, a panacea, a way for those at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW to feel good without actually accomplish anything.
P.S. Pandora’s Promise is playing at the E Street Cinema, a 10-block walk from the White House. The environmentalists depicted in that film know more about climate change and how it could be effectively fought with nuclear energy than any of the hundreds of analysts and unreliables lobbyists consulted by the president. Perhaps after seeing it the Obama policy shop will be shamed into an immediate overhaul of today’s plan.