Michael Shellenberger, Environmental Progress: Since the Fukushima disaster, FOE and its close ally, Greenpeace, have poured millions into East Asian nations to shut down nuclear power plants. In South Korea, FOE-Greenpeace funded a large class action lawsuit, sophisticated video and social media engagement, and protests. But their greatest coup was the Hollywood-style anti-nuclear disaster movie, “Pandora,” which was released in 2016 and watched by five million South Koreans. FOE-Greenpeace supported the film with protests and screenings. In early October 2017, the 478-member jury participated in a “debate camp” and next Friday, on October 20, the jury will deliver its verdict to President Moon, who has said he will respect and enforce their decision. But Moon hasn’t been shy about his anti-nuclear views. After shutting down one nuclear plant Moon gave a speech in which he claimed Fukushima killed 1,600 people.
Paul Driessen, senior policy analyst for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (www.CFACT.org): Demands that the world replace fossil fuels with wind, solar and biofuel energy – to prevent supposed catastrophes caused by man-made global warming and climate change – ignore three fundamental flaws. 1) The unprecedented warming and disasters are not happening. 2) The process of convicting oil, gas, coal and carbon dioxide emissions of climate cataclysms has been unscientific and disingenuous. 3) Renewable energy proponents pay little or no attention to land and raw material requirements, and associated environmental impacts, of wind, solar and biofuel programs on scales required to meet mankind’s current and growing energy needs, especially as poor countries improve their living standards.
Heather Matteson, Materials Scientist, Nuclear Reactor Operator, Environmentalist, Co-Founder of Mothers for Nuclear: I believe nuclear power advocates care about and want the same things as most Sierra Club moms and members. We want everyone in the world to be able to care for their children like we can for ours. We want a world of less air pollution for our kids. I changed my mind about nuclear, and my dad changed his mind, too. We might be destroying the planet, just like my dad thought. But in the end, we both came to think humanity is smart enough to save it.
Kristin Zaitz, Civil Engineer, Project Manager at Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant, Co-Founder of Mothers for Nuclear: My parents taught us about leaving wilderness more pristine than we found it. Dad took me backpacking as soon as I was old enough to carry a pack. We slept under the stars and marveled at the expanse of the sky, and our small place in a big universe. Knowledge is power. When I was pregnant, I inspected the inside of a containment dome during a refueling outage. I knew from my dosimeter that I got less radiation exposure than my coworker who ate a banana that day. I have run marathons for the last decade and have started taking Oliver, 6 and Kate, 3 on runs with me. Their little lungs work so hard — I feel glad we live near a nuclear plant, which emits no air pollution, and is far away from the polluted skies of Los Angeles and New York
James Conca, Geochemist, Contributor to Forbes, Consultant to industry and government on energy issues: Hurricane Harvey made land fall in Texas this week and the flooding was historic. What is shaping up to be the most costly natural disaster in American history, the storm has left refineries shut down, interrupted wind and solar generation, caused a constant worry about gas explosions, and caused a chain of events that led to explosions and fires at the Arkema chemical plant that is only the beginning. But the Texas nuclear power plants have been running smoothly. Anyone who knows anything about nuclear was not surprised. Nuclear is the only energy source immune to all extreme weather events – by design.
Reuters: Although no U.S. company now reuses its nuclear waste, the country has a long-running history with the technology. Following are timeline highlights of the U.S. inquiry into reprocessing and events that framed it.
U.S. Department of Energy: The evolution of wholesale electricity markets, including the extent to which Federal policy interventions and the changing nature of the electricity fuel mix are challenging the original policy assumptions that shaped the creation of those markets. Markets recognize and compensate reliability, and must evolve to continue to compensatereliability, but more work is needed to address resilience. The biggest contributor to coal and nuclear plant retirements has been the advantaged economics of natural gas-fired generation.
Jeremy Carl, David Fedor, Hoover Institution: "Retaining America’s leading role in commercial nuclear energy is vital to our national security. Our leading position as a nuclear power generator allows us to also lead in shaping the non-proliferation order that protects our security.”
Duke Energy Carolinas announced today that it is abandoning plans to build the Lee Nuclear Station in light of the project's principal designer and contractor declaring bankruptcy. Duke's decision comes on the heels of SCANA Corp. and Santee Cooper abandoning construction on the $18 billion V.C. Summer expansion plan having already spent $9 billion on the project. "With the availability of cost effective generation from natural gas and solar and other technologies we’re able to meet our customers needs in the near term." "But nuclear will continue to be important for the company in our diverse energy mix, now and in future."
Bryan Leyland, power systems design, mechanical engineer: We constantly hear that our present way of life is unsustainable because the world is running out of fossil fuels and other vital resources. People in developed countries are healthier and live longer than in the past. Abundant energy, engineering, technology and modern medicine have driven this transformation. We have progressed from eking out a living from subsistence agriculture to having plenty of time for recreation and relaxation and living better than a king 300 years ago. Nevertheless, billions of people are still living in poverty, and they and we need good governance and economic growth from using the best available technology to ensure that goods are supplied at the lowest cost and that energy is used efficiently and wisely.