Notwithstanding the recent nuclear accident in Japan, among many others, and the rapid growth in energy and electricity from renewable sources, congressional Republicans continue to press for more nuclear energy funding while seeking deep cuts in renewable energy investments, said Ken Bossong, Executive Director of the SUN DAY Campaign. One has to wonder ‘what are these people thinking?’
Well firstly, I don't see that it's a republican issue...
But the industry has soldiered on, trying to present the public with a picture of nuclear as a clean, safe, and cheap energy option. In many ways, it's been successful: Nuclear power is now accepted as a firm element of the energy portfolio by the American political mainstream, across party lines. Under President George W. Bush, new loan guarantees were promised in 2005, and the industry celebrated that promise as a turn toward a new age of building nuclear plants. President Barack Obama has asked Congress to triple those guarantees to $54.5 billion.
And just as the private prison industry lobbies for more laws... the nuclear lobby lobbies for carbon regulation and pollution standards... raising the cost to its competitors.
That being said, the downside of nuclear is so high when it does go wrong, that I view it as a bridge technology. However, the renewable industries may not scale the way nuclear and coal do. On the other hand, they may scale the way computer chips did- in which case they are going to be fantastically cheap within 10 years.