Calling Out Climate Change Catastrophists for Their Nuclear Power Hypocrisy

Nuclear Power Green Earlier this month, four prominent climate
change activists sent an
open letter
to their fellow environmentalists urging them to
drop their opposition to nuclear power as a zero-carbon energy
source. The response was, to say the least, pusillanimous. Ted
Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger, founders of the pro-progress*
Breakthrough Institute, have now called out in a great column,
Great Green Meltdown
,” the nuclear naysayers among the
“mainstream” environmentalist groups for their casuistical
rejection of this climate-friendly energy source:

Nuclear energy today is broadly recognized by scientists,
scholars, and analysts as an environmentally positive technology
with risks, such as they are, overwhelmingly outweighed by its
environmental benefits. Such is the consensus on this question that
mainstream environmental leaders no longer attempt to contest

And so, in response to the letter from climate scientists, and
airing of Pandora’s Promise on CNN
, the NRDC and CAP
led a chorus of green spokespersons claiming that their
opposition to nuclear was based not on environmental but rather
economic grounds.

“What’s weird is that the environmental movement is being held
up as an obstacle,” green jobs advocate Van Jones told Wolf
. “Don’t blame us! Nuclear power is incredibly
NRDC’s Dale Bryk told a CNN audience
that the reason the United
States wasn’t building nuclear was because “the market is not
choosing nuclear.” Her colleagues, Ralph Cavanagh and Tom
Cochran wrote
, “No American utility today would consider
building a new nuclear power plant without massive
government support.”

But rather than obscure the dogmatism that underlies green
opposition to nuclear energy, the economic arguments further
revealed it. Having demanded policies to make energy
more expensive, whether cap and trade or carbon taxes, greens now
complain that nuclear energy is too expensive. Having spent
decades advocating heavy subsidies for renewable energy, greens
claim that we should turn away from nuclear energy because it
requires subsidies.
(emphasis added) And having spent the
last decade describing global warming as the greatest market
failure in human history, greens tell us that, in fact, we should
trust the market to decide what kind of energy system we
should have. 

It was hard, at times, to tell whether the claims made about
renewables in particular were purely cynical or just delusional.
The Sierra Club’s
Brune claimed
that declining US emissions over the last five
years had been achieved thanks to wind and solar, a claim
that has no plausible basis in fact. US emissions are down
thanks to cheap gas, not renewables. Indeed, since the last US
nuclear plant came on line in 1997, nuclear has avoided more
emissions through simply increasing energy generation
from existing nuclear plants than have been avoided by
wind and solar power combined.

If an environmentlist is not in favor of nuclear power
(preferably liquid thorium reactors), then he or she is simply not
serious about halting any man-made global warming.

The whole column is worth your time.

*Noted because so many modern “progressives” actually oppose
technological progress.

from Hit & Run

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.