President Obama's recently announced 8 Billion dollar publicly financed start up of the Nuclear Industry in Georgia, with loan guarentees of 54 Billion, goes in the face of the fact that 25% of America's nuclear reactors are leaking radioactive material with the potential of huge future taxpayer liabilities and bailouts: Allen L Roland
The Associated Press recently reported that at least 27 of 104 nuclear reactors across the United States are leaking potentially dangerous levels of tritium into the groundwater around the plants ~ which includes Vermont Yankee Nuclear plant. This reactor is evidently pumping large amounts underground under the reactor in badly leaking disintegrating pipes.
Entergy, the Louisiana-based energy giant that owns the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant, is once again winning applause from Wall Street. The finance industry magazine Institutional Investor lists Entergy as the top electric utility in the country and one of the top nine companies in the nation.
Last week, by the way, J.P. Morgan upgraded Entergy’s stock.
“Industry insiders love Entergy,” said VPIRG Executive Director Paul Burns. “They can’t seem to get enough of the kind of short-term, take-the-money-and-run business model that looks great on the Dow Jones, but that’s what gave us the Enron scandal and, more recently, triggered the largest economic collapse since the Depression.”
On a February 2nd conference call with investors, Entergy CFO Denault told his audience that fourth-quarter cash flow was up $300 million, in part due to “lower working capital requirements.”
Here are the facts , folks.
" Since Entergy bought Yankee in 2002, the aging plant, located in Vernon, Vermont, has suffered a series of mishaps, including a fire, the collapse of a cooling tower, and most recently a tritium leak that has created an underground pool of radioactive water the size of a football field, and at least 30 feet deep. Some of that tritium, which is carcinogenic, has reached the nearby Connecticut River. "
“We’ve seen fires, radiation leaks, and collapsing cooling towers, and now we know Entergy boosted its bottom line by skimping on maintenance at Yankee,” Burns said. “We’re the ones wondering when the tritium is going to reach our drinking water. We’re the ones being handed a long-term deal for less power at higher costs. We’re the ones who may be on the hook for a large chunk of a billion-dollar cleanup.” Burns noted that Entergy’s “working capital requirements” also do not, apparently, include the decommissioning fund that is supposed to pay for cleaning up the plant. That fund is currently under $500 million, and the estimated cleanup costs are $1 billion. ." http://tinyurl.com/yf3fqy8
Sound familiar ? Think too big to fail banks and Investment houses as well as Insurance giants and now it's the nuclear Industry's turn to milk the golden cow of the Obama administration's corporate largesse or political handouts ~ and at the expense, once again, of the American taxpayer.
FAIR reports that both ABC and NBC mentioned that the Georgia plant would be the first built in the U.S. in three decades, yet neither gave much of an explanation as to why this would be the case. " But as nuclear power critics have documented for years, the plants have proven to be financial disasters, with severe cost overruns and a general reluctance among investors to foot the bill for projects that are unlikely to be profitable " (Greenpeace, 10/15/08).
Amory Lovins of the Rocky Mountain Institute, a longtime critic of the nuclear power industry, told Amy Goodman ( Truthdig, Feb 8, 2010 ) “If you buy more nuclear plants, you’re going to get about two to 10 times less climate solution per dollar, and you’ll get it about 20 to 40 times slower, than if you buy instead the cheaper, faster stuff that is walloping nuclear and coal and gas.”
In his 2008 report “The Nuclear Illusion,” Lovins writes, “Nuclear power is continuing its decades-long collapse in the global marketplace because it’s grossly uncompetitive, unneeded, and obsolete—so hopelessly uneconomic that one needn’t debate whether it’s clean and safe; it weakens electric reliability and national security; and it worsens climate change compared with devoting the same money and time to more effective options.” http://www.commondreams.org/view/2010/02/18
Obama's pledge of multi-billion dollar loan guarantees should cause reporters to wonder why the industry, after decades of experience, needs so much government assistance in the first place ~ unless, of course, we are looking at another Industry corporate and political bailout, which the American taxpayer should immediately reject. Or perhaps, Robert Alvarez, who served as senior policy adviser to the Energy Department's secretary and deputy assistant secretary for national security and the environment from 1993 to 1999, is correct when he ominously predicts that more of the nation’s tapped-out treasure is apparently going to be used for costly nuclear power, and nuclear weapons we don’t need and could never use.
Incidentally, President Obama's Energy Plan as a candidate stated….." there is no future for expanded nuclear without first addressing four key issues: public right-to-know, security of nuclear fuel and waste, waste storage, and [nuclear weapons] proliferation.”Allen L Roland http://allenlrolandsweblog.blogspot.com
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Allen L Roland is a practicing psychotherapist, author and lecturer who also shares a daily political and social commentary on his weblog and website allenroland.com He also guest hosts a monthly national radio show TRUTHTALK on www.conscioustalk.net
Freelance Alternative Press Online columnist and psychotherapist Allen L Roland is also available for comments, interviews, speaking engagements and private consultations ( email@example.com )
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