Friday, August 29, 2008

Liberal Lies: Common Sense on Nuclear Power

In ironic fashion, Minnesota politicians are working to overturn a Minnesota moratorium on the construction of new nuclear power plants.


Seriously, does it get more boneheaded than prohibiting the construction of nuclear power plants? It's one thing, albeit very lame and devoid of foresight, for liberals to oppose drilling in ANWR and off the our coasts and construction of new refineries, but to prohibit the construction of nuclear power plants? That's something altogether.

According to the Winona Daily News, "Sen. Steve Murphy, DFL-Red Wing, and Republican Rep. Steve Drazkowski, R-Wabasha, have been political opposites and one-time enemies. But on the issue of nuclear power in Minnesota, the two have become unlikely allies.

Murphy and Drazkowski both back an initiative they say is gaining momentum: an effort to repeal Minnesota’s moratorium on construction of new nuclear power plants. They say Minnesota, which last year set aggressive goals to reduce carbon pollution, must join other states and countries to embrace nuclear power as a non-polluting domestic energy source."

Naturally, liberals are skeptical and obviously reticent about overturning the ban. Why? They're concerned about the toxic waste disposal and it's impact on the environment.


Because of their undying devotion to the Environmentalist Church, the green movement would rather place life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness on the backburner while misguided excuses for civil servants (see: Nancy Pelosi) wage a pathetic effort to "save the planet."

According to Barclay G. Jones, professor of nuclear, plasma, and radiological engineering at the University of Illinois, states that "nuclear energy is good for the environment."
"Understand this: For the past quarter century, nuclear energy has been the nation's most important source of clean power for avoiding airborne emissions that result from burning oil, natural gas and coal.

According to a new study by Washington-based Energy Resources International, nuclear energy - by substituting for fossil-fuel power plants - has prevented 219 million tons of sulfur dioxide and 98 million tons of nitrogen oxides from being discharged into the atmosphere since 1973.

For years it has supplied trillions of kilowatt-hours of clean electricity without earning tradable credits under the Clean Air Act. Congress must rectify this oversight by allowing utilities to receive credits for nuclear plants, thereby boosting the value of nuclear plants and helping the ensure their continued operation in a competitive, restructured electricity industry."
When a professor, such as Jones, states that nuclear power is good for the environment, why won't liberals accept such claims?

Primarily, the boneheads on the left have preconceived notions regarding nuclear power, courtesy of rare accidents like Three Mile Island and Chernobyl. Furthermore, said idiots clamor that we need to reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

Great idea; I think most clear-minded, lucid individuals would agree. Yet, since the Left clings to the notion that gasoline is bad, how are we supposed to achieve this end? According to the Leftist propaganda sites like "," the waste resulting from creating nuclear power will adversely affect the environment.


Who would rather listen to? Groups with a clear agenda like "Waging Peace," or a REPUTABLE group like the Scientific American, "Over the past few decades, however, a series of studies has called these stereotypes into question. Among the surprising conclusions: the waste produced by coal plants is actually more radioactive than that generated by their nuclear counterparts. In fact, fly ash—a by-product from burning coal for power—contains up to 100 times more radiation than nuclear waste."

Furthermore, according to John McCarthy, professor at Stanford University, nuclear power plants can expect to operate for HUNDREDS of years, thus outlasting oil fields, wind generators, and solar panels.

Also, McCarthy states that the notion of nuclear waste is completely overstated:
"When fuel rods are removed from the reactor they contain large quantities of highly radioactive fission products and are generating heat at a high rate. They are then put in a large tank of water about the size of a swimming pool. There they become less radioactive as the more highly radioactive isotopes decay and also generate less and less heat. The longer the spent fuel is stored, the easier it will be to handle, but many reactors have been holding spent fuel so long that their tanks are getting full. They must either send the rods off or build more tanks."
According to a 1998 report, there has never been a release of radioactivity when it's stored in large pools of water.
" Once the fission process has slowed, the fuel rods are replaced. The spent fuel rods contain highly radioactive fission products and must be stored safely. These used fuel rods are considered high level nuclear waste. Currently all high level nuclear waste is stored in large pools of water at the power plants where it was generated. Seven to ten feet of water is enough to stop all radioactivity (Keeny, 1998). Since the late 1950's, high level nuclear waste has been stored in this form, and there has never been any release of radioactivity. There is actually a relatively small amount of high level nuclear waste. All of the waste ever produced in the history of commercial nuclear power production in the United States would cover the area of a football field four yards high (NEI: High-level waste, 1998). "
Unfortunately, we shut down our reprocessing plant during the 1970's.

In Minnesota, it's the Democrats, naturally, that oppose the construction of nuclear plants. It's not surprising.

1 comment:

Spicy Mollusc said...

I'm a liberal and I completely agree. It's just a shame that nuclear power, our best hope for providing large scale, sustainable energy in the long term, has become a politicised issue. One need not be a liberal to have concerns with the price tag of new nuclear power plants, nor a conservative to embrace the promise of carbon-free, non-intermittent electricity.