Energy Secretary Moniz Announces $6.5 Billion Loan For First Nuclear Plants in Nearly 30 Years
Today, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Ernest Moniz announced the approval of a $6.5 billion loan for Southern Co. to build two reactors at the Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating nuclear site in Georgia. It's a plan the two sides have been discussing since 2010.
While Moniz touted the reactors as the first new nuclear facilities in the U.S. to begin construction and receive NRC license in nearly 30 years, environmental groups were appalled by the loan.
“We are disappointed that the Department of Energy wants to gamble billions of taxpayer dollars on dangerous and dirty nuclear power," said Anna Aurilio, director of Environment America’s Washington D.C. office.
"When it comes to curbing global warming, time and money are of the essence and nuclear power fails on both counts."
Moniz made the announcement at the National Press Club this afternoon. According to Matthew Daly, an Associated Press reporter who attended the event, Moniz refused to answer a Keystone XL question and reminded the crowd what "all the above" really means:
Moniz: "All of the above is not a slogan. It's a policy and a pathway." Embraces all forms on energy and starts w goal of reducing GHG's.
— Matthew Daly (@MatthewDalyWDC) February 19, 2014
The Hill's Laura Barron-Lopez also tweeted a Moniz quote on climate change that seems to contradict providing a nuclear-friendly loan:
Moniz at #NPClunch: Patterns of climate change are alarming. DOE has role to play in response on preparing energy infrastructure.
— Laura Barron-Lopez (@lbarronlopez) February 19, 2014
The DOE is also working on a $1.8 billion conditional loan to the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia, one of the project's partners. Moniz is scheduled to travel to the Georgia construction site tomorrow to officially mark the granting to the loan.
“Since these loan guarantees were proposed four years ago, truly clean energy sources such as solar and wind have made great headway," Aurilio said. "In Georgia alone, solar power jobs have more than doubled over the past year."
Aurilio argues that the Obama Administration needs to look no further than Fukushima, Japan to understand the devastation nuclear plants can cause. More than 30 environmental organizations filed a petition Tuesday asking the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to hold off on issuing any more reactor licensing for that very reason.
“Underscoring the enormous environmental threat from nuclear power, radiation continues to leak into the Pacific Ocean from the worst nuclear accident ever at the Fukushima Daichi plants," Aurilio said.
“It’s absurd to risk our health and environment when we can do so much better with efficiency, wind and solar power.”
Visit EcoWatch’s NUCLEAR page for more related news on this topic.
Bill Maher is sick of billionaires' obsession with Mars, more like "Mars-a-Lago," he said.
In a new animation produced by ATTN:, the popular talk show host of Real Time, discusses the perils of our planet, including how "climate change is killing us."
A group of prominent climate scientists have written a study explicitly refuting statements made by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt on climate data. During his Senate confirmation hearing, Pruitt claimed in a written response that satellite data shows a "leveling off" of warming over the past two decades.
By David Pomerantz
The Nevada Assembly passed a bill Wednesday that would dramatically increase the growth of renewable energy in the state, but Sheldon Adelson, the casino magnate and major donor to Donald Trump, is attempting to prevent the bill from becoming law.
By Yosola Olorunshola
Whether it's through fashion or protest, Vivienne Westwood is not a woman afraid of making a statement.
On May 23, she rocked up to the residence of the Archbishop of Canterbury in London with a special guest—the Grim Reaper—to issue a strong statement on the Church of England's position on fracking.
Military veterans from across Virginia released a letter Thursday opposing two proposed fracked-gas pipelines: Dominion Energy's Atlantic Coast Pipeline and EQT's Mountain Valley Pipeline. These pipelines would cross through pristine areas of Virginia, taking private property by use of eminent domain, removing mountain ridgetops and threatening valuable drinking water resources. The veterans view this as contrary to their service to protect and defend the freedom and security of American citizens.
By Paul Brown
The food industry and big agricultural concerns are driving climate change and at the same time threatening to undermine efforts to feed the world's growing population, according to GRAIN, an organization that supports small farmers.
Particularly singled out for criticism are the large chemical fertilizer producers that have gained access to the United Nations talks on climate change. GRAIN accuses them of behaving like the fossil fuel companies did in the 1990s, pushing false information in the hope of delaying real action on climate change.
By Sydney Robinson
By John Rogers
Maybe it's because I first started working on clean energy while serving in the Peace Corps he founded, or maybe it's my years of working on these issues from his home state. But I can't help thinking about the 100th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's birth, and connecting his stirring rhetoric to the energy challenges of our times.
Here's what our 35th president might have said about the challenges of energy transition and the opportunities in clean energy:
"Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future."