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Member since: Fri Dec 19, 2003, 02:20 AM
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Government must boost coal, nuclear power

This is an OpEd demonstrating the belief system underpinning most support for nuclear power:

My Turn: Government must boost coal, nuclear power

By V.K. MATHUR For the Monitor
Saturday, December 29, 2012

... An active role for the federal government is needed to help achieve energy security and retain America’s edge in energy technology. Economic and environmental concerns – climate change, ensuring low-cost electricity and leading in two critical export industries – justify a concerted effort to boost domestic production of coal and nuclear power.


Here in New Hampshire, coal and nuclear power continue to serve us well, supplying about 60 percent of the state’s electricity, safely and reliably. But that won’t last for long, and our economy will suffer unless the government shows more support for coal and nuclear power.

In the years ahead, a cost-sharing partnership with private industry will be needed to achieve the promise of advanced clean-coal technologies and small modular reactors that can be built for a fraction of the cost of large nuclear plants. Coal and nuclear technologies are financially viable for a full range of energy companies in this country, and their development will position the United States to be a world leader in the commercialization of new and innovative power-plant designs.

To be sure, our nation’s energy future has become considerably brighter as a result of the enormous growth in oil and gas production. But we will continue to need a balanced mix of energy sources in order to hold prices down. Especially natural gas, with a history of price volatility, is a reminder of what could happen if we become heavily dependent on a single energy source for electricity production and neglect coal and nuclear power....


(V.K.Mathur is a professor emeritus in the University of New Hampshire’s Department of Chemical Engineering.)
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