Federal Energy Incentives through 2003 Compared to Share of U.S. Energy Production

Roger H. Bezdek
Robert M. Wendling
Issues in Science and Technology
National Academy of Sciences
2006

"Considerable disparity exists between the level of incentives received by different energy sources and their current contribution to the U.S. energy mix. Although oil has received roughly its proportionate share of energy subsidies, nuclear energy, natural gas, and coal may have been undersubsidized, and renewable energy, especially solar, may have received a disproportionately large share of federal energy incentives."

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Alas, like all good propositions...

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Chart or Graph

Nuclear energy produces electricity for one in five homes and businesses across the United States, with 104 reactors in 31 states. The country’s largest source of carbon-free electricity is nuclear energy, accounting for 70 percent of all emission-free electricity generated.

This chart normalizes, by energy production, four major energy plants. Nuclear looks very safe compared to the other three. This is especially true compared to non-OECD countries. However, this may be slightly misleading because the majority of non-OECD countries (mostly third world countries) do not posses nuclear technology.

"Electricity from biomass plants is rising; a breakdown of sources in the U.S."

This chart demonstrates how different developments change the cost of nuclear energy and its main competitor, gas. Even the rosy projections seem to suggest nuclear power will never be too cheap to meter, it appears barely competitive.

Nuclear projects in the U.S. have seen their costs exclusive of financing rise more than fourfold in less than a decade. (See the range of rising estimates over the last decade in Figure 1.)

This graph details the fallout caused by the Chernobyl disaster. It implies that, while nuclear power is a domestic decision, the potential fallout is international.

This graph demonstrates that despite a sizable increase in operation of nuclear power, the frequency of accidents are small. It also demonstrates that accidents rarely occur.

"The conventional wisdom that the oil industry has been the major beneficiary of federal financial largess is correct. Oil accounted for nearly half ($302 billion) of all federal support between 1950 and 2003."

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Exelon is one of the leading nuclear power plant owners in the US. This graph demonstrates that without building new nuclear plants, cutting back on energy demands, or substituting a different energy source, our energy capacity will be greatly diminished within a few decades.

Considerable disparity exists between the level of incentives received by different energy sources and their current contribution to the U.S. energy mix.

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This graph demonstrates that nuclear power costs are rising. Despite advances in technology, nuclear power is not becoming cheaper. Mark Cooper argues this fact should lead us to invest in other alternative energy sources.

This is a map of every nuclear power plant in France. It provides a sense of the magnitude and planed development of French nuclear power. It also demonstrates the need for water ways. All but a couple were built close to a body of water.

As shown in Figure 1, fission R&D—even excluding federal research on military reactors—captured nearly half of all federal energy R&D funding between 1950 and 1993.

"The map above shows the worldwide status of commercial nuclear power."

This chart lists a variety of countries and the percentage of their electricity generation that comes from nuclear power. France leads the group, obtaining over 75 percent of its electricity through nuclear power, compared to the U.S. with only about 20 percent.

Indeed, as Figure ES-1 ... shows, subsidies to the nuclear fuel cycle have often exceeded the value of the power produced. This means that buying power on the open market and giving it away for free would have been less costly than subsidizing the construction and operation of nuclear power plants. Subsidies to new reactors are on a similar path.

This graph shows that more Americans oppose nuclear power than any other fuel source. At the same time, this graph also demonstrates that strong support exists for nuclear power; it leads all but solar and wind for the category "Increase A Lot." This split demonstrates the controversial nature of nuclear power.

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In the last twenty years, the ugly specter of terrorism has haunted both the United States and Europe. One of nuclear power's largest safety concerns is a terrorist attack. This chart shows a unity -- unlike the other polls -- between nuclear and non-nuclear states in Europe that terrorism is a major threat to nuclear power plants.

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"This bar chart shows the ten countries with the greatest nuclear generation in 2010."

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Analysis Report White Paper

"There is little connection between used-fuel management programs and the needs of the nuclear industry. Any successful plan must grow out of the private sector. The time has come for the federal government to step aside and allow utilities, nuclear technology companies, and consumers to manage used nuclear fuel."

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This article argues that the United States' energy research and development is an area that is subject to underinvestment. The authors claim that there are multiple reasons why energy R&D is low, one of which is the low cost of traditional fossil fuel.

Marilyn Kray argues that nuclear power, partially due to its negligible carbon emissions, should be part of America's future energy plans. She discusses new reactors and the challenges they face being put into production. She also discusses the economic situation required for future nuclear power plant construction and investment.

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Beginning with nuclear fusion, this presentation describes how atoms split to form nuclear energy. It then goes on to describe how uranium is used in this process and which nations make use of nuclear energy.

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Nuclear energy issues facing Congress include federal incentives for new commercial reactors, radioactive waste management policy, research and development priorities, power plant safety and regulation, nuclear weapons proliferation, and security against terrorist attacks.

"This booklet explains today’s nuclear energy technology, the processes and safety practices associated with it, and the benefits it provides.... Most of all, it provides 'just the facts' for a quick study about nuclear energy."

This article provides a brief on French nuclear power. One of the leading users of nuclear power, France has close to sixty nuclear reactors. They are the world's leading exporter of energy, due largely to their reliance on nuclear power. In addition, they may utilize reprocessing spent fuel more than any other country.

"This report tells only some of the stories of communities impacted by uranium mining. We highlight the more serious cases of contamination from past and present mining."

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This MIT study sought to discover the perception of the US public towards nuclear energy. They asked questions regarding energy preferences, perceived costs, and perceived harms. They also attempted to explain these preferences. The study found that nuclear power is the most controversial energy producer.

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Due to an increased interest in nuclear power and heightened worries about the pollution caused by coal and oil, many have claimed that a nuclear renaissance may be occurring. This paper examines the proliferation concern of this renaissance.

"As Japan's nuclear crisis continues, this report details the nature and extent of radioactive spent fuel stored at nuclear reactors across the United States and how it can be made less hazardous. …"

This paper attempts to calculate the costs of Chernobyl. While the immediate deaths resulting from the Chernobyl disaster are easily quantifiable, the fallout had long-reaching consequences. This paper attempts to document the damages, ranging from the health of future generations to the ecosystem, disrupted economies to societal harm.

This paper claims that despite supporters hopes and dreams, the nuclear renaissance is simply cost inefficient. Examining historical data, current cost projections, relative cost of other alternatives, and finally other factors such as environmental or safety concerns, Mr. Cooper claims that costs in the future are increasing for nuclear power.

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This paper argues that changes in the energy industry lead to proliferation concerns.

"Since the early 1950s, every major government in the Western Hemisphere, Asia, the Middle East, and Europe has been drawn to atomic power’s allure only to have market realities prevent most of their nuclear investment plans from being fully realized."

North Korea has agreed to militarily denuclearize in exchange for a light water reactor. They want the US to provide the reactor first, whereas the US wants North Korea to denuclearize first. Zhang explains how some of this posturing goes beyond simply bickering regarding the time of denuclearization and building the LWR.

"'The Manhattan Project: Making the Atomic Bomb' is a short history of the origins and development of the American atomic bomb program during World War II."

"Of all factors affecting prospects for the substantial growth of nuclear power in the 21st century, cost is the most fundamental. What are the essential economics associated with the construction and operation of advanced state-of-the-art nuclear power plants?"

This brief contends that economics explain the potential demise of nuclear power, not politics.

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In reality, nuclear waste is far from uniform; some forms of nuclear waste are more harmful and difficult to dispose. But due to poor education by the nuclear industry, all waste is treated as harmful and difficult to dispose despite that not being the case.

Video/Podcast/Media

This debate pits Jim Woolsey and John Podesta against Christine Todd Whitman and Karen Harbert. The two teams debate the issue of "ending our dependence on carbon fuels."

Two experts debate the future of nuclear power in the United States. They focus mostly on safety.

Neil Cavuto discusses nuclear safety with Rep. Devin Nunes. Rep. Nunes argues that nuclear power is safe and should be utilized despite the tragedy in Japan. He points out that no one has ever died from nuclear power in the US.

"Representatives from the nuclear power industry talked about nuclear safety, waste management, and challenges facing the industry in the U.S and abroad. They also talked about lessons learned from the Fukushima nuclear accident in Japan. They responded to questions from the audience."

President Obama explains that in light of the Fukushima incident a review of US nuclear energy was conducted. It was deemed safe. He also described how the US helped the Japanese with the Fukushima accident.

Veronique de Rugy attacks safety myths regarding nuclear power. She points out that nuclear power is incredibly safe. However, she is still against nuclear power because it is not profitable. She points out that despite massive subsidies, nuclear power has not proven cost efficient.

Primary Document

"Energy Secretary Steven Chu had a distinguished scientific career before joining Barack Obama's cabinet. He shared the 1997 Nobel Prize in Physics, was a professor at Stanford University, and ran the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He was the guest speaker at the April 1 Monitor breakfast in Washington, D.C. where he discussed Japan's nuclear crisis, the clean-energy transition, and...

The Atomic Energy Commission was created in the 1950's to advance nuclear science. This report details the major successes and failures of this organization. It covers key legislation, important reports, significant presidential statements and mandates, changes in the geopolitical climate, and technological advancements for nuclear science. One recurring theme in this report was the tension...

The problem with preventing nuclear weapons proliferation is that peaceful and military nuclear ambitions follow the same track. Any curtailment of military nuclear production effectively retards nuclear energy programs. According to this report, this fact makes inspection-only deterrence to nuclear proliferation ineffective; any ban outlawing military usage of nuclear technology would outlaw...

"This short history of nuclear regulation provides a brief overview of the most significant events in the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s past. Space limitations prevent discussion of all the important occurrences, and even the subjects that are included cannot be covered in full detail. The first chapter of this account is taken from George T. Mazuzan and J. Samuel Walker, Controlling...

"We desire to emphasize that the responsibility for devising means to ensure that the new discoveries shall be used for the benefit of mankind, instead of as a means of destruction, rests not on our nations alone, but upon the whole civilized world. Nevertheless, the progress that we have made in the development and use of atomic energy demands that we take an initiative in the matter, and we...

The Agreed Framework between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea) and the US created four main promises; the militarized denuclearization of the DPRK, the US furnishing the DPRK with a light water reactor for peaceful energy production, normalization of relations between North Korea and the US, and inspection and oversight by the IAEA of North Korea's denuclearization...

This treaty declares that "[t]he parties shall cooperate in the development of scientific research on and practical use of atomic energy for peaceful purposes and in the fields of nuclear safety and radiation protection in accordance with the provisions of this agreement and their applicable treaties, national laws, regulations and license requirements."

After the successful militarization of nuclear power, Congress passed this legislation to promote peaceful nuclear power. This Act created the Atomic Energy Commission. It also established that the government controlled nuclear materials. However, the goal was to have private companies run nuclear power plants. As a result, all nuclear materials -- until the 1960's -- were on loan to private...

"Today the United Nations Security Council voted overwhelmingly to sanction Iran for its continued failure to live up to its obligations. This resolution will put in place the toughest sanctions ever faced by the Iranian Government, and it sends an unmistakable message about the international community's commitment to stopping the spread of nuclear weapons."

"An Act To authorize appropriations for the Department of Energy for national security
programs for fiscal year 1980, and for other purposes."

"In October 2007, DOE issued regulations that govern the LGP and include requirements for application submissions, project evaluation factors, and lender eligibility and servicing requirements. The regulations also generally address requirements set forth in applicable guidance. Some key aspects of the initial LGP guidelines were revised in the regulations to help make the program more...

"Before the General Assembly of the United Nations, Eisenhower discusses the atomic capabilities of the United States and its allies, as well as the Soviet Union and the implications for world peace. The President indicates a willingness to negotiate the reduction of atomic armaments with other nations and to use atomic energy for peaceful means."

Remarks by President Eisenhower after a tour of a nuclear power plant.

Promoting the technology, Eisenhower said, "I am very hopeful that more than governments will get interested in this project. I hope that private business and professional men throughout the world will take an interest, and provide an incentive in finding new ways that this new science can be used.

In the...

"The new Act permits us, under proper security safeguards, to give our allies certain information that they must have for an effective defense against aggression. This information includes data needed for training in the use of and defense against atomic weapons and for evaluating the atomic capabilities of a potential aggressor. Agreements of this type with our allies will greatly strengthen...

The Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPACT) provided for two additional gasoline blends (7.7% and 5.7% ethanol).

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, "The Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct 2005) established a number of energy management goals for Federal facilities and fleets. It also amended portions of the National Energy Conservation Policy Act (NECPA)."

"An Act To reorganize and consolidate certain functions of the Federal Government in a new Energy Research and Development Administration and in a new Nuclear Regulatory Commission in order to promote more efficient management of such functions."

This report seeks to solve the problem of storing nuclear waste. Due to proliferation concerns, reprocessing as an option is currently not available. Therefore, they examine other options. They end up proposing a program that deposits "waste repositories, deep in the earth's geologic formations" for highly dangerous nuclear waste.

"This report responds to a request from Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee that the EIA update its 1999 to 2000 work on Federal energy subsidies, including any additions or deletions of Federal subsidies based on Administration and Congressional action since the previous report was written, and to provide an estimate of the size of each current subsidy. Subsidies to be included are those...

In remarks at the restarting of a nuclear reactor, George W. Bush explained the importance of nuclear energy and encouraged its proliferation. "Nuclear power is America's third leading source of electricity. It provides nearly 20 percent of our country's electricity. I don't know if a lot of our citizens understand that, but nuclear power is a key component of economic vitality because it...

"In accordance with section 114 of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982, 42 U.S.C. 10134 (the 'Act'), the Secretary of Energy has recommended approval of the Yucca Mountain site for the development at that site of a repository for the geologic disposal of spent nuclear fuel and high level nuclear waste from the Nation's defense activities. As is required by the Act, the Secretary has also...

"The bill recognizes that America is the world's leader in technology and that we've got to use technology to be the world's leader in energy conservation. The bill includes incentives for consumers to be better conservers of energy. If you own a home, you can receive new tax credits to install energy-efficient windows and appliances. If you're in the market for a car, this bill will help you...

"WE HAVE known since the age of nuclear energy began more than 30 years ago that this source of energy had the potential for tremendous benefits for mankind and the potential for unparalleled destruction.

On the one hand, there is no doubt that nuclear energy represents one of the best hopes for satisfying the rising world demand for energy with minimum environmental impact and with the...

"IT IS my privilege today to sign into law a bill which takes a big step forward in this Nation's program to face up to and solve its crucial energy needs for the future.

H.R. 11510 abolishes the present Atomic Energy Commission and establishes three new Federal entities:

1. The Energy Research and Development Administration (ERDA) ...

2. The Energy Resources Council ......

This bill seeks "[t]o amend the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 to require congressional approval of agreements for peaceful nuclear cooperation with foreign countries, and for other purposes."

Harry Truman's address to Congress, just after the end of World War II.

His remarks began, "Almost two months have passed since the atomic bomb was used against Japan. That bomb did not win the war, but it certainly shortened the war. We know that it saved the lives of untold thousands of American and Allied soldiers who would otherwise have been killed in battle.

The discovery...

"I am pleased to sign into law today H.R. 8638, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act of 1978. Enactment of this legislation takes us a major step toward fulfillment of an objective which the United States shares with other nations—a halt in the spread of nuclear weapons capability while preserving the peaceful use of nuclear energy."

"There is no dilemma today more difficult to resolve than that connected with the use of nuclear power. Many countries see nuclear power as the only real opportunity, at least in this century, to reduce the dependence of their economic well-being on foreign oil--an energy source of uncertain availability, growing price, and ultimate exhaustion. The U.S., by contrast, has a major domestic...

"With a view to receiving the advice and consent of the Senate to ratification, I transmit herewith a certified copy of the Treaty banning nuclear weapon tests in the atmosphere, in outer space and underwater, signed at Moscow on August 5, 1963, on behalf of the United States of America, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics....

This convention deals with safely disposing waste from nuclear power plants. It provides basic safety framework for the contracting parties to follow. This framework includes the maintenance of existing facilities, the construction of new facilities, the operation of facilities, and assessment standards and requirements. There are no explicit penalties for violating this convention.

This joint statement by the US and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea) led to the Agreed Framework in 1994. Both countries announced their support for the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. In addition, both countries stated they would not utilize nuclear weapons, either in threat or actual use. They both supported safeguards to a nuclear free, re-unified Korea.

"Summarized below are the consensus views of the six banks named above regarding the minimum conditions necessary for a workable loan guarantee program as authorized by Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 that can achieve the twin goals of supporting the financing of new nuclear plants in the United States while adequately protecting the U.S. taxpayer."

According to the NRC, "This Act gives States the responsibility to dispose of low-level radioactive waste generated within their borders and allows them to form compacts to locate facilities to serve a group of States. The Act provides that the facilities will be regulated by the NRC or by States that...

"For the first time, it will allow private ownership in the United States of special nuclear materials--the materials used as fuels for nuclear plants.

We have made the most substantial progress in this Nation since 1954 in developing peaceful application of atomic energy particularly in the generation of electric power with nuclear reactors.

The new law recognizes that great...

This document relates President Johnson's comments on nuclear energy. According to Johnson, much progress had been made in 1966 toward harnessing nuclear energy for purposes other than weaponry. Johnson concludes by exclaiming over "what a great force nuclear energy can be for peace."

Dr. Bunn provides a summary of his testimony before the Blue Ribbon Commission. He argues that light water reactor fuel should not be reprocessed. In addition, while breeder reactors may make sense theoretically, they have not been able to effectively create a breeder reactor despite approximately 100 billion dollars spent on research and development. He wonders if this R&D money could be...

"To achieve energy security and greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction objectives, the United States must develop and deploy clean, affordable, domestic energy sources as quickly as possible. Nuclear power will continue to be a key component of a portfolio of technologies that meets our energy goals. This document provides a roadmap for the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Nuclear...

According to the NRC, "This Act seeks to limit the spread of nuclear weapons by, among other things, establishing criteria governing U.S. nuclear exports licensed by the NRC and taking steps to strengthen the international safeguards system."

"As we sit here today there are approximately 440 commercial nuclear reactors operating around the world. One hundred and four of them are operating in this country alone. With the exception of a few highly publicized and, I might add, mostly misunderstood, accidents, these reactors have operated safely, cleanly, and to the benefit of society for most of their lifetimes.

This is not to...

This CRS report highlights nuclear power plant safety concerns. Chief amongst these concerns are terrorist attacks on nuclear power plants. This report details what procedures the NRC has put into place to prevent these attacks from occurring. It also mentions the shortfall of these procedures.

"This study assesses the commercial viability of advanced nuclear technology as a means of meeting future demand for electricity by comparing the costs of producing electricity from different sources under varying circumstances. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated the cost of producing electricity using a new generation of nuclear reactors and other base-load technologies under a...

"An Act to provide for the development of repositories for the disposal of high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel, to establish a program of research, development, and demonstration regarding the disposal of high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel, and for other purposes." This act eventually led to the Yucca Mountain project.

This exchange of letters is a debate between the executive director of the Korean Peninsula Energy development Organization and a skeptic. In these letters, the issues of proliferation and new light water reactors are covered.

"The resolution that you have just approved commends to the governments of the world for their speedy ratification the treaty for the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons.

It is the most important international agreement in the field of disarmament since the nuclear age began.

It goes far to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons.

It commits the nuclear powers to redouble...

In a speech at Georgetown University, President Obama outlined his energy policy for the nation. While past presidents have continually argued for the need to reduce America's dependence on foreign oil, President Obama urged reduction on all oil dependency. Furthermore, the President condemned the idea that increased domestic oil drilling will solve the energy problems the nation faces.

President Obama announced an eight billion dollar loan to build a new nuclear power plant during this address. In addition, he proposed tripling loan guarantees to nuclear facilitates. He claims that nuclear power is an important component to meet "growing energy needs and prevent the worst consequences of climate change." He points out that France and Japan have invested heavily in nuclear...

This commission by the Pennsylvania Governor attempted to discover the environmental, health, economic, and legal issues. The report found the incident had a minor effect ecologically. Little physical harm occurred, yet mental health seemed to suffer. Economically, the long-term effects were little though the local economy was disrupted in the short run.

This commission was charged with preventing the nuclear accident that occurred at Three Mile Island. They studied the accident and concluded that, at a minimum, significant changes will be necessary in "organization, procedures, and practices -- and above all -- in the attitudes of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and, to the extent that the institutions we investigated are typical, of the...

In this speech, President Nixon outlined some of his energy policies. Nixon stated that "A sufficient supply of clean energy is essential if we are to sustain healthy economic growth and improve the quality of our national life." Among other things, Nixon suggested that the U.S. "[b]egin work to modernize and expand our uranium enrichment capacity."

"The Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982, which I'm signing today, provides the long overdue assurance that we now have a safe and effective solution to the nuclear waste problem. It's an important step in the pursuit of the peaceful uses of atomic energy, a program that was launched by President Eisenhower some 30 years ago. The outlines of that program have changed with the years, but America's...

"A more abundant, affordable, and secure energy future for all Americans is a critical element of this administration's economic recovery program. While homeowners and business firms have shown remarkable ingenuity and resourcefulness in meeting their energy needs at lower cost through conservation, it is evident that sustained economic growth over the decades ahead will require additional...

"For the purpose of strengthening the defense and economy of the United States and of the free world, I recommend that the Congress approve a number of amendments to the Atomic Energy Act of 1946. These amendments would accomplish this purpose, with proper security safeguards, through the following means:

First, widened cooperation with our allies in certain atomic energy matters;

...

Delivered shortly after the Fukushima 2011 nuclear incident in Japan, this testimony offers the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's "Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 budget request."

"TODAY the Fourth Semiannual Report of the Atomic Energy Commission is made public, almost on the eve of the second anniversary of the Atomic Energy Act of 1946. Every thoughtful person should become familiar with this report. Atomic energy is not only the Government's business; it is the vital concern of every citizen.

Two years have elapsed since the Atomic Energy Act became law, and...

This testimony, presented by the President of the Federation of American Scientists, discusses the proliferation concerns for small modular reactions. Primarily, he contends that the platonic ideal of a proliferation resistant SMR is far off. Currently, they represent a significant proliferation concern.

The NRDC's testimony deals with nuclear subsidies, spent fuel reprocessing, and nuclear waste. They argue loans should only be available to radically new nuclear power plants. This is to offset first-mover costs. They claim the current loan system amounts to subsidizing a mature industry. Secondly, they argue that reprocessing is not currently feasible and the government should table this...

According to Our Documents, "The Test Ban Treaty was signed in Moscow on August 5, 1963; ratified by the United States Senate on September 24, 1963; and entered into force on October 10, 1963. The treaty prohibited nuclear weapons tests 'or any other nuclear explosion' in the...

This testimony argues that nuclear power can be an economic solution to global warming. Specifically, investment by the federal government could spur economic development. This would meet the desire of both President Obama and Committee Chairman Levin to create green jobs.

This testimony provides information on why so many nuclear power plants have been deemed unsafe. According to this testimony, this has resulted from mismanagement and poor oversight.

This report deals with, "Evaluating and providing recommendations relating to the security of radiation sources in the United States from potential terrorist threats, including acts of sabotage, theft, or use of a radiological source in a radiological dispersal device." Amongst the security issues, it addresses nuclear waste.

"Despite growing political and public support for nuclear power, progress toward actually building any new plants has been a struggle. While the blame for this stagnation often goes to inefficient government subsidy programs, the real problem lies in why those subsidies are necessary to begin with. Chief among these structural problems is the nation’s incoherent nuclear waste policy....

The Atomic Energy Act of 1954 allowed for privatization of nuclear power. It allowed partnerships between the government and private entities in pursuing peaceful usage of atomic energy. This bill establishes the licensing procedure, regulations, and adjudicating methods for nuclear power.

"Meeting the energy, environment, and climate demands of the 21st century will require creating new solutions and reimagining older but still crucial technologies. Civil nuclear technology combines elements of both approaches. And while large reactors that produce in excess of 1,000 megawatts of electricity are the most common, they are not the only possible designs for power stations. Small...

"The Chernobyl accident was very chilling. This article lays out the costs -- both emotionally and physically -- on the affected population. It also points out how Chernobyl seriously harmed the nuclear power industry, especially in light of fears driven by Three Mile Island. Finally, it claims the lesson of Chernobyl is international cooperation -- both for technical skill and help in case of...

"The concept of the atom has existed for many centuries. But we only recently began to understand the enormous power contained in the tiny mass.

In the years just before and during World War II, nuclear research focused mainly on the development of defense weapons. Later, scientists concentrated on peaceful applications of nuclear technology. An important use of nuclear energy is the...

"The Price-Anderson Act was enacted into law in 1957 and has been revised several times. It constitutes Section 170 of the Atomic Energy Act. The latest revision was enacted through the 'Energy Policy Act of 2005,' and extended it through December 31, 2025.

The main purpose of the Price-Anderson Act is to ensure the availability of a large pool of funds (currently about $10 billion) to...

This paper argues that proliferation-prevention costs should be internalized by the nuclear industry. Furthermore, due to proliferation concerns, waste should not be reprocessed. Instead it should be stored. In the future, with advances in technology, this position could be revisited.

The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons intended to curb the ability of non-nuclear state from acquiring nuclear weapons and sought to disarm states already possessing nuclear capabilities. However, it drew a sharp line between nuclear technology for war and peace. It maintained every state had a right to peaceful atomic energy. It also established the International Atomic...

This letter formally asks for a dismissal, with prejudice, of the Yucca Mountain project for storing nuclear waste. Citing the Secretary of Energy's, "Judgment that scientific and engineering knowledge on issues relevant to disposition of high-level waste and spent nuclear fuel has advanced dramatically over the twenty years since the Yucca Mountain project was initiated," the Department of...

According to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, "This Act establishes programs for the stabilization and control of mill tailings at uranium or thorium mill sites, both active and inactive, in order to prevent or minimize, among other things, the diffusion of radon into the...

This report by the Department of Energy explains why they believed, pending further investigation, Yucca Mountain was a good place to store nuclear waste. This report explains why nuclear waste needs stored, why they pursued geological disposal, what makes Yucca Mountain a good site for nuclear waste disposal, and it also explains the processes necessary to ensure no accidents occur.

This report by the DOE highlights the technical, geological, and environmental concerns required in building a nuclear waste depositary. This report focuses on the Yucca Mountain site. It also explains potential designs for the Yucca Mountain project.

This report questioned the administration's, specifically the National Regulatory Committee Chairman, Jaczko, stance on ending the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste project. They repeatedly demonstrate that the administration believes the Yucca Mountain project is unsafe. The administration claims new scientific knowledge supports their claim. This committee would like to be made aware of that...

This is the current form of the Price-Anderson Act. This law switches punitive liability from the producers of nuclear power and utilities to the government. Some have claimed this constitutes a major subsidy for nuclear power.

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