Posted by 25 March 2019
With the Senate readying a vote on the Green New Deal this week, the Trump Administration recently announced a big boost for nuclear power.
Speaking to nuclear power plant employees in Georgia, Energy Secretary Rick Perry said that “This is the real new green deal.” He used the opportunity on Friday to announce that the federal government would issue taxpayer-backed guarantees for building new nuclear power plants. This is similar to arrangements made during the Obama Administration to support construction of new nuclear plants.
The Trump Administration has long supported nuclear power, pointing out that it is a way to produce electricity without carbon emissions. They also note that nuclear power can generate electricity regardless of the weather conditions. Administration officials say that this power source should be a big part of any strategy to combat climate change.
Some Democrats, however, have a different view. They prefer renewable energy sources, such as solar or wind, for carbon-free power generation. The Green New Deal does not include provisions to increase the use of nuclear power.
Because of strict regulations and a high cost to construct new facilities, nuclear power plant operators rely on federal loan guarantees. Even with these guarantees, however, some new plants are behind schedule for completion. The electricity produced by these plants is also more expensive than electricity produced by natural gas plants, which is causing issues for existing nuclear power plant operators.
Do you think that the federal government should guarantee loans for nuclear power plant construction? Are nuclear power plants a good way to produce carbon-free electricity?