New report shows nuclear power hurts efforts to curb global warming

Far from a solution to global warming, nuclear power will actually set America back in the race to reduce global warming pollution, according to a new report written by Environment America and released by its Vermont state affiliate, the Vermont Public Interest Research Group.  VPIRG used the report as a basis for calling on state leaders and Congress to focus on energy efficiency and renewable energy instead of nuclear power as the solution to global warming.
Tell Sen. Sanders and Leahy that we don’t need nuclear power!
“When it comes to global warming, time and money are of the essence and nuclear power will fail America on both accounts,” said James Moore, clean energy advocate with VPIRG. “With government dollars more precious than ever, nuclear power is a foolish investment that will set us back in the race against global warming.”
The report released today, Generating Failure: How Building Nuclear Power Plants Would Set America Back in the Race Against Global Warming, analyzes the role, under a best-case scenario, that nuclear power could play in reducing global warming pollution. Some key findings of the report include:

Nuclear power is too slow to contribute to curbing Global Warming. No new reactors are now under construction in the United States. Building a single reactor could take 10 years or longer.

In contrast, energy efficiency and renewable energy can immediately reduce global warming pollution. Energy efficiency programs are already cutting electricity consumption by 1-2 percent annually in leading states, and the U.S. wind industry is already building the equivalent of three nuclear reactors per year in wind farms.

Building 100 new reactors (which would cut only 12% of global warming pollution) would require an up-front investment on the order of $600 billion dollars – money which could cut at least twice as much carbon pollution by 2030 if invested in clean energy.

Taking into account the ongoing costs of running the nuclear plants, clean energy could deliver 5 times more pollution-cutting progress per dollar.

Nuclear power is not necessary to provide clean, carbon-free electricity for the long haul. The need for base-load power is exaggerated and small-scale clean energy solutions can actually enhance the reliability of the electric grid.

Senator Sanders and Leahy will have an opportunity to vote on the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act. Let them know that nuclear power isn’t part of America’s green energy future.
To address global warming, state and federal policy makers need to focus on improving energy efficiency and generating electricity from clean sources that never run out – such as wind, solar, biomass and geothermal power.We can repower America with clean energy, protect our environment, and rebuild our economy in the process — putting millions of Americans to work building wind turbines, installing solar panels, weatherizing homes, and building plug-in hybrid cars that get 100 miles to the gallon
Environment America is a federation of state-based, citizen-funded environmental organizations working for clean air, clean water, and open space. Environment America is the new home of what was USPIRG’s energy and environmental work.