Tuesday, February 16, 2010

President Obama will announce plans for two new nuclear reactors in Georgia

Today President Obama will announce the first federal loan guarantee for the construction and operation of two nuclear reactors at the Southern Company's Plant Vogtle plant in Burke, Georgia.  These will be the first new nuclear reactors in the U.S. since the partial core meltdown at Three Mile Island in 1979.  From Jake Tapper at ABC News:
The president will make the announcement at the IBEW Local Headquarters in Lanham, Md., where union members can learn applications that can be used in the construction of nuclear power plants.

The White House is making no bones about the fact that they see this announcement as advancing two agenda items: clean energy and efforts at bipartisanship.

"In the State of the Union and at the House Republican Conference retreat, the President made clear that he is willing to work with Republicans towards a comprehensive solution to our energy challenges," a White House official said. "By announcing plans today to break ground on the first new nuclear reactors in nearly three decades, the President is making good on his offer to meet Republicans halfway."

The official said that pro-nuke Republicans now need to return the favor.

"Republicans who advocate for nuclear power have to recognize that we will not achieve a big boost in nuclear capacity unless we also create a system of incentives to make clean energy profitable," the official said. "As long as producing carbon pollution carries no costs, plants that burn fossil fuel will be more cost effective than nuclear plants."
If the Obama administration has calculated that this announcement will dampen Republican opposition to Cap and Trade legislation or the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) overreaching plans to regulate carbon dioxide emissions and designate coal ash as a hazardous waste, they are certainly mistaken.  But on its face, this is a welcome announcement, and I applaud the President for it.

1 comment:

  1. Agreed with both ponts you made in the last paragraph... it won't lead to cap and trade, but at least he's making a move away from the "nuclear is evil" camp. And hey, more power for GA!