In the interest of being “fair and balanced,” here are just a few current pieces coming in support of nuclear power.
In light of the canceled reactors in South Carolina, and the questionable future of the two in Georgia, Duke Energy just announced the cancellation of its proposed twin reactors also in South Carolina, at a pre-construction cost of $354million, which they want the ratepayers/taxpayers to pay.
An article the other day in Forbes, a conservative business media exemplifies the concepts of “fake news,” biased media brainwashing, and outright misstatements and lies. James Conca, for years, has been a mouthpiece for the nuclear industry via Forbes, and has consistently not only promoted nukes, but more importantly argued vehemently against renewables. Forbes is supposedly one of the more “respected” business media outlets, along with the Financial Times, the Economist, the Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, etc. All have been arrogantly ignorant of the positive business potentials of renewables, downplaying and misleading the “business community” about the status of wind and solar at any particular time. As with a lot of economists, they are miles behind reality.
His claim that solar is too expensive (over $10billion for 1500MW) is based on the $2.2B cost for the 392MW Ivanpah solar THERMAL plant built several years ago. That was one pilot project which probably will not pan out in the future, compared to the 150,000MW of developed PV throughout the world. As stated in an earlier blog, 1500MW of PV solar today would cost closer to $1.5B…Spain just did it for under $1B…and the costs are coming down.
More importantly, there is absolutely no mention of the enormous future costs of decommissioning the power plants, the decommissioning and clean up of all the associated nuclear fuel infrastructure, nor the unknown issues and costs of the maintenance, storage, and ultimate fate of the High Level
Waste spent fuel.
Waste spent fuel.
The conservative Hoover Institute at Stanford University just released a book by Cal and Fedor.
Their main argument is that nuclear is so necessary to combat climate change…I thought that was a hoax! Their claim that nuclear plants do not emit CO2 is one of those twisted facts. The CO2 emissions from the entire fuel cycle are enormous, and all the other emission create their own separate problems. The decommissioning of the tiny Humboldt Bay nuke will have resulted in close to 10,000 truckloads of wastes to Texas, Utah, and Idaho…20,000 since the trucks have to return. Go figure the diesel fuel used…lots of emissions!!!
Again, they focus on just the building of current power plants with the promise of "new" technology being cheaper and safer than renewables. The other underlying myth often stated is the renewables cannot be brought on line fast enough (compared to building nukes?) to make a difference.
They do make the point that there is not (has not been) a free market in energy. Between the utilities, government regulators, and the big energy companies, the most logical, cheapest, cleanest, safest, and sustainable resources have been given very bad lip service.
The conservative “economic and business” media has historically been promulgating negatives and untruths about renewables…everything from “panels won’t last more that 15 years; they can never be cost effective as an investment; there is not enough sun or wind to make a difference in our growing demand for electricity; and something better and cheaper will come along.”
Two of my favorites are:
From Fox news, solar works in Germany but can’t work in the US because Germany gets more sun than the US!
A report from the prestigious Wyoming Institute of Technology (it’s just a fancy website) which influenced the town Woodland, North Carolina to outlaw solar energy because the town leaders feared for their children’s future.
A lot of things are starting to change…interestingly enough due to economics…high-level dollars and low-level cents…and the increasing impacts of climate change. Most of us can just sit back and watch in amazement. As my friend says, “there ain’t no fix for stupid.”