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Dec-17-2010 14:20printcomments

Reactor Reax: Nuclear Energy Reporting This Week

The latest stories from Physicians for Social Responsibility.

Nuclear reactor

(WASHINGTON D.C.) - Nuclear power in the simplest terms, generates a dangerous byproduct that man has no way of adequately handling and there is no foolproof disposal method for the waste. The more we use nuclear power, the more we build stockpiles of deadly radioactive waste.

Wikipedia explains that nuclear power is produced by controlled (i.e., non-explosive) nuclear reactions. The nuclear fission reacts to heat water to produce steam, and that energy is used in commercial and utility plants to generate electricity. Last year, roughly 13–14% of the world's electricity came from nuclear power. The same process is used to power more than 150 naval vessels throughout the world.

There is a saying where I am from in California, it is: "In the event of a nuclear disaster, kiss your children goodbye."

It is harsh, particularly when we consider the growing viability of solar and wind power which is clean and for the most part, available. It is a modern miracle, but the nuclear power industry that has existed for a long time now, fights for its existence every step of the way. Yet all along, there are natural safe alternatives.

In this line of thinking, we can reflect on the history of the hemp/cannabis plant. This was made illegal so that the US could plant smoke belching factories around the nation that replaced a natural fiber with a synthetic fiber. It all began with the Dow/Dupont's need to market rope. Hemp rope is natural and one of, if not the strongest natural fiber known to man. I don't think the approach has been a sound one.

How about medicine? Billions are spent developing drugs that mimic or simply replicate the actions of natural, pre-existing herbs and roots, etc. The Native Americans knew this long before the white man came and plundered the land. This too, is the story of nuclear power in the world today. The ego of man does not allow him to follow a natural or logical course; it is all about greed and it always was. People always lived without this.

- Forward by Editor Tim King

Budget Hawks Oppose Nuclear Loan Guarantees, International Business Times, December 15, 2010. "But now, some groups that see themselves as fiscal conservatives are saying that the loan guarantees would unfairly shift the risk of defaults to the taxpayers, and cost the government money that could better be spent elsewhere. Those with a more libertarian bent say the guarantees distort the cost of capital. If the private sector was willing to finance nuclear energy, they say, it would be done."

Environmentalists Go Nuclear Over Obama Administration's Loan Guarantee, Sunshine State News, December 12, 2010. "Liberals already unhappy with the Obama administration over taxes are going ballistic over an impending $7 billion loan guarantee for the nuclear power industry. The taxpayer-funded guarantees are embedded in the continuing resolution used to fund the government (in lieu of an actual budget). Passed by the House, the resolution now goes to the Senate, and environmental groups are urging citizens to call their senators to delete the guarantees."

"Clean Energy Standards": Making Electricity Prices Skyrocket, Canada Free Press, December 15, 2010. "With each passing day, the odds of Congress passing a Renewable Electricity Standard grow more and more dim. But Energy Secretary Chu, Senator Graham and others are now promoting a similar mandate, just with a new name. Instead of a renewable electricity mandate, they are promoting a "clean energy standard" to "encourage" investments in nuclear energy, coal with carbon capture and sequestration technology, and renewable energy in the electric generating sector. But despite the happy talk about "clean energy standards," these mandates will increase electricity prices and make our economy less competitive."

Georgia Power, PSC Sticks It to Ratepayers, Atlanta Progressive News, December 12, 2010. "The Public Service Commission (PSC) is currently considering Georgia Power's purposed 844 million dollar rate increase, despite the fact that the country is in the middle of a recession with historically high unemployment and foreclosure rates."

Don't make Texas the nation's radioactive waste dump, (op-ed by Karen Hadden, executive director of the SEED Coalition), San Antonio Express News, December 10, 2010. "Texas is at risk of becoming the nation's radioactive waste dumping ground. The Texas Low-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal Compact Commission is pushing forward a rule that essentially invites 36 or more states to dump radioactive waste in Texas."

"Reactor Reax" is featured on, a Web site maintained by Physicians for Social Responsibility. For more information, contact

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