Bookmark and Share Business News in the South from The Randle Report


Sign up for Randle Report Daily Emails for all The South's Business and Political News Follow Randle Report on Facebook for Business News in the South Follow Randle Report on Twitter for all The South's Business and Political News



First step in the Nuclear Power Renaissance

By Glenn McCullough, Jr., former Chairman – Tennessee Valley Authority
On February 9 the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission did something it has not done in 34 years: approve a license (two in fact) to build two advanced nuclear reactors. For a consortium of utilities constructing two advanced nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle on the Georgia-South Carolina border, this means major strides generating 2,200 megawatts of new electricity, enough for approximately one million homes and businesses.
Amid all the talk about a new energy policy and clean energy in recent years, the NRC’s decision is perhaps the most important action any federal government entity has taken. It is the rubber meeting the road.
Nuclear energy is a clean, American-made, safe product that cannot be outsourced. And it is already proven to work on a large scale, at very attractive and largely predictable costs. Unlike wind and solar power which still account for less than five percent of America’s electricity, nuclear generates nearly 20 percent of the country’s power.  
Nuclear energy, which is produced in a culture where safety is the highest priority, has continuously proven to be safe. In 50 years of commercial nuclear power operation in the United States, no one has died a radiological related death. In fact, a long-term study by Columbia University of 35,000 workers in the nuclear power industry found that they live longer and have lower cancer rates than the rest of us.
Despite significant differences between Fukushima and U.S. nuclear power plants, many lessons are being learned from Fukushima to further improve safety at U.S. plants. And the technology is at hand, from state-of-the-art developments by Westinghouse, Toshiba, and General Electric, to make even more efficient, safer reactors to complement the 104 commercial reactors now operating safely.
In fact, because nuclear power does not emit the toxic substances that fossil fuel plants do, and provides far more reliable electricity generation than renewable power sources, nuclear is arguably the safest, most reliable form of power today.
Some worry that loan guarantees on the Vogtle and other new plants will harm taxpayers, creating a new “Solyndra” situation. The odds of this, however, are remote for several reasons.
First, nuclear power is a proven technology and has a proven revenue stream. In fact, before the taxpayer would be liable for costs, the large well-capitalized companies behind the project would all first be responsible for the costs.
Next to the government and the financial services sectors, the largest user of capital is electricity generators. With guarantees that cost of capital becomes lower and is in turn passed on in the form or lower rates to customers. 
To truly stimulate America’s economy for long-term, sustained, economic growth, we need to expand our energy infrastructure. The NRC should now look to approve advanced reactor license applications at 11 other sites that would result in the construction of 16 advanced reactors creating thousands of jobs. This would help the U.S. catch up to the rest of the world, where 63 new reactors are currently under construction with 156 on order or planned. 
About the authorGlenn McCullough, Jr., is a former chairman of the Tennessee Valley Authority, America’s largest public power company.

No Comments
Add Comment



Enter the code shown above in the box below
  Post Comment




Features & Opinion

 Top Ten Places in the South for Relocating California Companies

Urban areas have all kinds of assets that are easy to spot. They have the population, so the labor shed is not usually an issue. Urban areas are also connected by better roads, rail and air service and many have river and deep water ports. Usually Internet access and other forms of communication are more efficient in urban areas. And you have a larger array of quality of life options to choose from, such as the cultural assets found in metropolitan areas.

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

By Mike Randle
The belief that "80 percent of all new jobs come from existing business and industry" is an out-of-date, old-fashioned fabrication. I have no idea how it started, where it started, or who said it first, but there are professionals in economic development as well as leaders of government in the South who actually believe that each year, 80 percent (why 80 percent I don't know, either) of all new jobs are created by existing business and industry. I hear it all the time and I just roll my eyes. There is nothing static in economic development but this: 100 percent of all lost jobs come from existing business and industry. That, and of course 100 percent of the time site consultants never pay for a meal.

 Business News in the South - Randle Report

The U.S. is now the world's largest producer of oil. It is also the world's largest producer of natural gas. When the ban is lifted on Iran's ability to export oil, the U.S. will be the only country left in the world that cannot export the product.
 Nashville Mayour Karl Dean
If you have ever seen one of my presentations, then you know about the word "reshoring" and how that phenomenon has lifted the spirits of even the most skeptical Southerners regarding the future of the region's economy. After all, in the last four decades, manufacturing has suffered a bloodletting never before seen in U.S. history. The biggest factor behind the slow and long meltdown that began in the 1990s was the herd mentality to offshore manufacturing capacity to cheaper locales, primarily by U.S.-owned companies.



Southern Business & Development Southern Auto Corridor Small Town South Randle Report

Copyright ©2015 Randle Report
All of the South's Business News, Political News, and Economic Development News in One Place