Obama announces 8.3 billion loan guarantee for 2 new nuclear power plants

Obama announces $8.3 billion loan guarantee for 2 new nuclear power plants

President Obama announced Tuesday, February 16th that a $8.3 billion loan guarantee would be awarded to Southern Company in Burke, GA.  This was part of his plan to create a clean energy economy.  

Nuclear power plants do not create greenhouse gas emissions, therefore appearing more favorable than coal-fired power plants.  In fact, they actually produce nuclear waste which is harmful to the environment since most nuclear waste cannot be disposed of and American plants do not recycle the nuclear waste as France does.  

The two nuclear reactors are set to be in service by 2016 and 2017.  They are positioned to be the first nuclear reactors to reach government approval since 1979. 

The $8.3 billion loan guarantee would help subsidize most of the private loans Southern Company would have to acquire in order to build the nuclear power plants.  The subsidy would cover about 70% of the total cost of the reactors.

The commissioning of these two nuclear reactors is estimated to produce 3,500 jobs for construction and 800 high paying jobs after completion.  They will generate 2,200 megawatts of electricity.  One megawatt of electricity can power 500 homes in Georgia.

This $8.3 billion loan guarantee to Southern Company comes from $18.5 billion set aside for nuclear power programs.  President Obama has urged Congress to triple the nuclear loan program to $54 billion with the intention of funding more nuclear projects in the future.

Obama has found difficulty in convincing Republicans to back his clean energy program because it emphasizes nuclear power as a method of minimizing greenhouse gas emissions.

Even with an $8.3 billion loan guarantee, these nuclear power plants and all others must still retain radioactive waste on-site creating health and environmental concerns.  These concerns have been addressed but are d eemed less detrimental than those of oil and coal energy.

The United States produces 20% of its electricity from nuclear sources.

Rich Hessler Solar
Finance Your Solar System

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