So, when the House got finished with ACES, it was a travesty of a mockery of a sham, and, as the HuffPo News Team observed in a cap and trade Q & A, “Approval of a climate bill in the Senate has been viewed as a long shot. Parts of the bill may need to be changed to secure approval in the Senate.”
What changes you shudder to ask? Well, as #1 W-M cheerleader Romm observed, the bill had a 10-20 percent chance of doing some good environmentally, so it will be the Senate’s job to eliminate even those slender odds.
How? HuffPo contributor Steve Kirsch gives us “The Good News.” Nuclear is “a magical power technology.” It isn’t new. It’s old. And, now it’s fast, fast, fast. And, it’s clean, clean, clean!
IFR (Integral Fast Reactor) was developed by a team of hundreds of scientists working for more than 20 years at our top government national laboratory for nuclear energy (Argonne National Laboratory, at its branches in Illinois and Idaho).
The bad news is that the IFR development was abruptly canceled in its final stages in 1994. A decision was made in the early weeks of the Clinton administration by people who formerly worked for the oil and natural gas industry to cancel the project. The three reasons publicly given for canceling the program were all based on misconceptions. Since then we haven’t done a damn thing to exploit their marvelous invention. [Editor's comment: Hawk-sput!]
The convenient solution invented at Argonne is simple: instead of spending billions to dispose of our nuclear waste, we can re-use that “waste” to generate power by using advanced “fourth generation” nuclear power technology. Using just our existing nuclear waste, we can power the entire planet for centuries.
Not only is it a bargain in power, ‘Merika, it now is a way to dispose of the nuclear waste. (Solved that problem, eh?) Even better, the Senatorial sales pitch is that nuclear is clean energy. And, of course, living in the shadow of nuclear annihilation for 60 years, who could doubt that it contributes to our national security?
Climate realist Romm has asked why we still prop up an industry that can’t survive without the taxpayer swallowing the economic risk? I dunno, Joe, could it be that Senators and their supporters are well-invested in nuclear power? Is it because nukes are the Viagara for a faltering Empire?
At present, solar energy technology is more costly way of delivering electricity than nuclear energy. Still a major clue to current policy… Solar energy is ubiquitous, whereas uranium mines can be owned.
And, this blog wants to thank Steve Kirsch for solving one puzzle. For some time there has been that nagging question. Yes! We can… what?
Fast reactor nuclear power designs, such as the IFR, are more than 100 times more efficient than our existing light water nuclear reactors (LWRs). The waste they produce is minimal, short-lived, and relatively easy to safely store: a factor of 500 less in space-time requirements than the waste from our existing nuclear reactors. If an American used nuclear power their entire life, they would produce enough nuclear waste to fill a soda can.
So, as further corruption of H.R.2454 proceeds and “changing parts of the bill” includes 100 new nuclear reactors as a mainstay of alternative energy policy for the United States, you need not wonder, as Harvey Wasserman recently did,”who will pay for and insure them, where will the fuel come from and the waste go and who will protect them from terrorists.” As the saying goes, when you look around the poker table and you are unclear who the sucker is, dispense with any doubt, because it is you, the one not holding ACES.
“What this all boils down to is that what ACES is actually trying to achieve is investing in a new type of economy,” observed the naive student activist.