Does the United States Need More Nuclear Power?

The U.S. Senate is working on new comprehensive energy legislation.

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The U.S. Senate is working on new comprehensive energy legislation. One element of such a plan would be a renewed push for more nuclear power, which advocates say is an underused clean energy source. Critics worry it could lead to environmental disaster.
Edited by Robert Schlesinger


Lamar Alexander
GOP senator from Tennessee and chairman of the Senate Republican Conference

Forty years ago, at the time of the first Earth Day, Americans became deeply worried about air and water pollution and a population explosion that threatened to overrun the planet's resources. Nuclear power was seen as a savior to these environmental dilemmas. It could produce large amounts of low-cost, reliable clean energy.



Dennis Kucinich
Democratic House member from Ohio and chair of the Oversight Committee's Domestic Policy Subcommittee

If nuclear energy is a bad investment for Wall Street, then is it a good investment for taxpayers? Even high-fliers on Wall Street are afraid to invest in nuclear projects. Moody's has called the projects "bet the farm" investments. The Congressional Budget Office estimated in 2003 that the risk of default was "well above 50...


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