Nuclear Energy

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Nuclear power is the safest and greenest form of energy on the planet: and the environmentalist left has always opposed it. The left got over 120 reactors blocked or cancelled in the U.S. so we stayed on fossil fuels and coal for that power instead. That was not about the environment, and it was anti-Science.

My Uncle Roger was a watermelon environmentalist (Green on the outside, Red on the inside). The plans were easy, they would do everything they could to distract, delay and drive up the costs of Nuclear plants: then use the cost-overruns (caused by their protests and delays) as evidence that it was ineffective or poorly managed.

1970s and 1980s

The extremist Government (under Jimmy Carter) combined with the \"no nukes\" and green movements, to eliminate and stop building cheap and clean Nuclear power plants. How they did this was an interesting footnote of itself:
  1. \"they\" outlawed standardized power plants, and required that each power plant be created custom and have \"Environmental Impact Studies\" done. This of course drove up the costs of plants, increased the time to build, and drove down the safety of plants (at startup) -- since you had to redesign everything for each plant and work-out all the new kinks and processes.
  2. protestors also slowed down construction and drove up costs with sabotage, interference of work, court delays, harassing of workers (to get them to quit or make them demand more money), and so on.
  3. they were champions of \"regulations\" passed to restrict how the reactors would operate and what levels of power they could produce, and so on, again driving down production and driving up costs.
  4. Then in the end, the protestors (lawyers) argued in court and in the press that the plants were coming in over cost bids, taking far more time than promised and not putting out the power promised -- and so that everything was a conspiracy of graft and corruption, and that Nuclear Power was too expensive and corrupt.

The facts are still the same as before -- we can produce cheap nuclear power if we want to -- some just don't want to and the protestors succeeded in driving up the costs and deluding the masses in who was at fault.

While Nuclear was the prime target, no traditional method of power creation was safe:

  1. Coal was blocked, as were other fossil fuels
  2. New Hydro-electric was all but stopped because dams changed the environment and created lakes that people could do horrible things like boat on (effecting the environment) and it would help control floods which were natural, and so on.
  3. Natural gas was bad because you were taking something out of the earth and burning it

The goal (and effect) was to drive up the costs of energy in general, so that solar and wind would look less ridiculous. The fraud was this was about the environment, but new plants (of every type) were greener and cleaner than the ones they replaced -- so it was about limiting capacity and keeping older and dirty variants around, so they could complain about the pollution and demand costly mitigation factors.