Sensible Energy Solutions for Minnesota, or SESM, wants repeal of the state’s moratorium on constructing nuclear energy facilities
- Edited by Stephen Heiser -
According to a report by the Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal, a coalition of business, labor and environmental leaders is backing a nonprofit that wants to increase nuclear power generation in Minnesota. Sensible Energy Solutions for Minnesota (SESM), wants repeal of the state’s moratorium on constructing new nuclear energy facilities.
“As we look ahead, we must put nuclear power — the most sensible and carbon-free base-load electricity source in existence — back on the table as an energy option,” said Minnesota Chamber of Commerce President David Olson, an SESM board member.
SESM members draw attention to applications to build nuclear power plants in other states, and say Minnesota is missing out on an opportunity.
“These plants would supply carbon-free, low-cost, base-load power for the energy grid, as well as offer good-paying jobs during the construction phase and during day-to-day operations,” said Minnesota Pipe Trades Association President Carl Crimmins, also on the organization’s board.
Some of the SESM board members include Cynthia “Cyndi” Lesher, retired president and CEO of Northern States Power Co.; Harry Melander, executive secretary of the St. Paul Building and Construction Trades Council; and Don McMillan, president of the Minnesota Outdoor Heritage Alliance.
The Minnesota Senate surprised many in the state earlier this year when the senate voted 42-24 to repeal the 15-year-old ban. But the measure failed in the Minnesota House in a 76-60 vote. SESM plans an aggressive grassroots political campaign for the moratorium’s repeal.
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This is disturbing news. Recent reports have shown that nuclear generated power is neither cheaper nor safer than other alternative forms of power. Wind energy would be cheaper to produce and run, and there are no safety concerns. There are ample alternatives to back up wind during off-peak hours. We already have the technology! And have these groups thought abought the long-term storage of nuclear waste? The governor had to sign a bill in 2003 extending the waste storage at Prairie Island through 2013--but then what? Why promote a fuel source that will produce contamination and possible catastrophe for our great-grandchildren. These plants also pose a threat of terrorist attacks. And finally, without the government's assistance, these plants could not be built, so our tax dollars will be again used to generate private profits. Who will insure these plants against accident? The government! Nuclear energy is a bad idea from all perspectives: cost, safety, and national security.
It would help J Contursi's cause if she/he would cite the references that show the nuclear generated power is not cheaper than the alternatives. To claim that wind power is cheaper flies in the face of the fact that wind energy is heavily subsidized (www2.macleans.ca/.../ontarios-big-windy-gamble) . Wind turbines suffer from vibrations, require constant maintenance, and only work when the wind blows.
If you examine the pie chart the base electricity load 86.9% of all power generated is through coal and nuclear. I do not forsee an alternative evnergy source which can produce this much base power. Coal is not cleaner. Coal is a primary source for mercury and sulfer dioxide in the environment. Coal produces much more waste in the form of fly ash which contains toxic compounds. Handling fly ash is itself a problem, there was a settling pond in Knoxville TN which was breached December 22nd 2008 spilling 1.1 billion gallons of water and fly ash toward and into and arm of the Emory River. Nuclear is the best choice for base power load. It is the uninformed and fearful public and political representation who are causing the stalemate in handling high level nuclear waste.
It is interesting that there are still some people who want more Nuclear power when the issue of nuclear waste has yet to be resolved. Do people know so little about Nuclear waste and How it must be stored?? Do people understand that Nuclear waste must be cooled in water for years and years and years...If the cooling were to discontinue due to a loss of power this material would cause an event never before seen in human history and would make the area around the Nuclear waste site a radioactive wasteland. The amount of waste and wind direction would determine the size area but figure it would start at approximately 500 times the area effected by the Hiroshima Bomb...10,000 Square miles at Every site minimum...
Until this issue is dealt with no more Nuclear Plants....It is all about cost effective but the only way to make this safe is to get the Waste off the planet and THAT is expensive, However, IF we Need the Power than we NEED to shoot that waste into the sun or Out into deep space....This would require Special cooling containers for transport and holding... Once in space the cold of space would keep the material cool.
This would raise the cost of nuclear power making it not nearly as cost effective as the Power companies want people to believe. Profits Before Humanity must stop.
Deal with the Mess we already Have before making More....Clean up after yourself and Pay for it with your profits is what we should be saying to the Corporate Giants.
Build more Nuclear Power plants when they do not even know what to do with the waste they have already generated??? Talk about Ludicrous and Irresponsible..........If you look at those leading the push you have a Former CEO/President of NSP Power company and The Executive Secretary of the St Paul building Trades ( Looking for lots of Jobs I am sure but jobs of this nature are temporary and Nuclear Waste is FOREVER!!! )
KEEP MINNESOTA GODS COUNTRY..........We should be closing the Nuclear Plants now in Operation!!! Fukushima is Just the beginning........We will all be DEAD or Mutants if they keep this up!!