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

(required)

(required)

CAPTCHA image
Enter the code shown above in the box below
  Post Comment
 

 

 

 

Features & Opinion

 Top Ten Places in the South for Relocating California Companies

Reshoring manufacturing capacity from primarily Asia to the South and Mexico is now a common thing to do and it's all about money. When China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001, the average manufacturing wage in China's Pearl River Delta (PRD) was about 58 cents an hour.

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

 FEATURE  
By Dr. Glen Fenter
Desperation sometimes masks itself in acceptance. Such was the case for Takelia Carter of Marion, Ark. For Carter, the mother of six school-age children in a low paying job, desperation was normative existence. This was her life in Crittenden County, Ark., deep in the Delta where unfortunately one in four families lives well below the poverty level.
 

 Business News in the South - Randle Report

FEATURE     
By Mike Randle
There are numerous factors driving the new industrial revolution in the South. And it is a revolution, as this manufacturing surge that began in 2007 continues to break records year after year in the total number of large, capital intensive projects. One factor, of course, is that reshoring of facilities back to the U.S. continues to grow each year.
 
 Nashville Mayour Karl Dean

We try to change up the categories in our annual Ten Top 10s section, but we always include the "Ten People Who Made a Difference" category. This year though, we are honoring 12 and you will learn why by reading about this group of folks who have made a difference in the South. Here is our annual list that includes executives, economic developers and politicians who have made a difference in the South's economy.


 


 

 

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

Copyright ©2014 Randle Report
All of the South's Business News, Political News, and Economic Development News in One Place
Login