A promising home-grown source of power is abandoned over safety and environmental concerns and regulatory roadblocks. Said industry addresses those concerns and comes back safer and more environmentally friendly than ever. But the roadblocks remain.
Sound familiar? It’s a story that those of us at CEA are all too familiar with.
As advocates of a balanced domestic energy industry push for more responsible drilling in Alaska and along the country’s outer continental shelf, a parallel battle is waging in the nuclear power industry. It’s been 30 years since ground has been broken on a new nuclear power plant in the U.S., even though nuclear is not only a zero-emissions source of power, but it has a proven ability to generate power on a massive scale. While nuclear power has not been subject to the same sweeping bans placed on oil, it has been stymied by a lot of fence-sitting on the part of lawmakers, who have failed to get fully behind the nuclear industry, with sensible regulations and financial incentives that would help make more plants feasible.
That could be about to change. Lawmakers working to assemble a climate change bill that a majority can agree on are proposing including a nuclear power tax credit that would put nuclear on equal footing with other zero-emissions sources of power like wind and solar. Two prominent U.S. senators, John Kerry and Lindsey Graham, last month published an Op-Ed explaining why nuclear power needed to have the same level of support that wind and solar power enjoy. Nuclear power, they noted, is “our single largest contributor of emissions-free power (which) needs to be a core component of electricity generation.”
“We need to jettison cumbersome regulations that have stalled the construction of nuclear power plants,” the senators wrote.
We at CEA couldn’t agree more. At a time when so many Americans are embracing the need for increased energy security and more stable energy prices, we hope nuclear will receive the long-awaited attention it deserves along side natural gas, oil, and a host of alternative energy sources.
For more information about nuclear power and to get involved, please visit Nuclear Advocacy Network and register with the code word “uranium.”