Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Nuclear vs. Solar: Corporate Profits and Public Risk - The Equation

Crowd headed for the sun

"There are lots of reasons to choose solar over nuclear.  Solar power does not draw water from reservoirs or rivers. Solar power does not have safety risks that go on for years without being corrected. No waste from solar plants can be used to make bombs.  But maybe I have already made up my mind. I have invested my own money to put solar panels on my own roof.  My risk, my power supply, my choice. 
"Where nuclear power proposals do not face a test of competition or even comparison with alternatives, lawmakers should require utility regulators to have power companies conduct a comprehensive integrated resource planning process where energy efficiency and renewables are on a level playing field with other supply options.
"If the owners of a nuclear power plant are willing to take a risk with their own money, maybe they don’t need to justify their choice. But if the money at risk is YOURS, and there is NO review, seems like the state government should get more involved in protecting the consumer."

Nuclear vs. Solar: Corporate Profits and Public Risk - The Equation

In the Sunshine State (Florida) and nearby states of North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, proposals for new nuclear power plants stand in stark contrast to lower risk, less expensive energy alternatives. Consumers in these states have already donated $6 Billion to the utilities’ nuclear ambitions. The charges that can be collected without the consumer seeing a benefit are estimated for the reactors: Summer 2 & 3, (South Carolina) $10.4 billion; Vogtle (Georgia) $14.5 – $18.2 billion; Levy (Florida), $15.1 to $21.6 billion, and Turkey Point (Florida) $12.8 to $18.7 billion.
Costs and Risks, On You
The long and uncertain process for permitting and building nuclear power plants creates costsand risks. The utilities that continue to pursue nuclear power permitting and construction all have protections from their state regulators thatthe risks and costs for nuclear plant development will be paid by consumers, without regard to progress or success of these efforts. Utility consumers are paying for these plants through rate increases before the plants begin producing any energy. A UCS-sponsored study of costs projected the Levy power plant could add $700 to residential electric customers’ annual electric bill by the year 2021, which might be when the plant begins to produce electricity. What the final cost will actually be, no one knows...

more > Nuclear vs. Solar: Corporate Profits and Public Risk - The Equation
The Equation - a blog on independent science practical solution
Union of Concerned Scientists

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