Friends of the Earth and five other national environmental and public interest groups are stepping up efforts to block what they contend are at least $544 billion in taxpayer subsidies for the nuclear power industry included in the Lieberman-Warner bill, which is expected to be considered by the Senate in early June.
The subsidies are couched in vague language in a category called “zero and low carbon energy technologies,” according to FoE and lobby group members, which includes Beyond Nuclear, Environmental Working Group, Greenpeace, Nucelar Information and Resource Service and Public Citizen.
“Nuclear is the only energy industry that could fall under this category that does not have a specific carve elsewhere; funding for renewable energy is identified separately in the bill,” according to an FoE press release.
“Although the word ‚Äònuclear’ has been carefully omitted from the bill, it is clear that this is a covert attempt to bolster a failing nuclear power industry in the name of addressing climate change,” Brent Blackwelder, president of Friends of the Earth stated. “It’s time to focus on real global warming solutions like solar, wind and energy efficiency, not to further fatten the moribund nuclear calf.”
“After 50 years of unresolved safety and waste disposal issues, it perplexes many Americans why Congress would support massive subsidies for the nuclear industry,” added John Passacantando, Executive Director of Greenpeace USA.
“Nuclear power is a dirty and dangerous distraction from real global warming solutions. When both Wall Street and Warren Buffet think nuclear is a risky investment, Congress should not waste American tax dollars to further subsidize this 1950s technology.”