Obama’s done it again.
He’s betrayed his progressive base—this time by announcing $8.3 billion in loan guarantees for two new nuclear power reactors in Georgia.
And he vows to keep on going down the dangerous path of nuclear power.
“This is only the beginning,” he told us on Tuesday. “My budget proposes tripling the loan guarantees” for nuclear power plants.
Obama has always had the financial support of the nuclear power industry, so this shouldn’t be a shocker.
But it is a slap in the face to environmentalists
And it comes at an odd time, since the Vermont Yankee plant has just been leaking radioactive tritium.
Obama waved at the safety issues surrounding nuclear power, as well as the waste disposal issue, but he’s plowing full steam ahead anyway.
Though these will be the first nuclear reactors constructed in more than three decades, Obama still labeled them, somehow, as part of the “technologies of tomorrow.”
The design for Georgia plants themselves “have been rejected by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission as being unable to withstand natural cataclysms like hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes,” writes Harvey Wasserman, one of the world’s leading anti-nuclear-power activists.
Obama claimed these plants would create a lot of jobs. But, as Wasserman points out, “energy experts at the Rocky Mountain Institute and elsewhere” have concluded that the same dollar spent on energy efficiency as on nuclear power could produce “ten times as many permanent jobs.”
As is his fashion, Obama justified his approval of the loan guarantees with his by-now hackneyed rhetoric about going beyond partisanship, or as he put it, “beyond the same old stale debates between the left and the right, between environmentalists and entrepreneurs.”
Such rhetoric has not served him well politically so far. And now it’s fronting for a potential disaster environmentally.
Matthew Rothschild is the editor of The Progressive magazine. To subscribe for just $14.97 a year, just click here.