On Saturday, 13 May 2006 the Edomonton Sun published a column by Kerry Diotte titled This province should embrace nuke energy. I recommend that you read it and enjoy a sensible argument for the increased use of nuclear energy in Alberta Canada. Of course, many of the thoughts expressed in the column can be applied to many other areas of the world, but one always has to start somewhere and Mr. Diotte has apparently decided that his home province would make a great place for an increased nuclear presence.
I love it when columnists provide their email address; I wrote the below note to encourage Mr. Diotte to keep on writing and thinking about nuclear energy.
Dear Mr. Diotte:
I was pleased to read your recent column titled “This province should embrace nuke energy”. Your sensible commentary provides good information for your readers to consider as the new debate over nuclear energy takes shape.
As a former nuclear submarine engineer officer, I can attest to the fact that nuclear power plants can be reliable and safe. I know that they are clean enough to operate while sealed insides a relatively narrow tube full of people hundreds of feet below the ocean surface for months at a time. Been there, done that.
I wish you and your province good luck as you work to overcome some of the negative conceptions that people have with regard to nuclear energy.
One aspect of the debate that I think you need to consider, however, is that not all of the opposition to nuclear energy comes from “Environmentalists”. The fossil fuel industry is full of leaders that understand that a rapidly growing nuclear power industry will take markets from them, reduce their sales volume and probably reduce the price at which their extremely profitable commodity is sold. The perception of petroleum scarcity is worth billions of dollars. If nuclear power can alleviate that perception . . .
They may not be as vocal as Environmentalists, and they certainly do not express their opposition by carrying signs in protest. Such activity would be uncomfortable in an expensive suit.
I have found, however, many pieces of evidence that points to the fact that they support anti-nuclear activities with large quantities of cash. I also believe that they speak privately to politicians and encourage their public comments in opposition. Perhaps they studied Sun Tzu in business school and adhere to one of his maxims – “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”
Best regards and keep up the good work,
Editor, Atomic Insights
Of course, all letter leave out a lot of information; otherwise they would be too long for either reading or writing. One key piece of information missing from that letter is that there are plenty of people in the fossil industry that support nuclear energy developments as a natural progression to the next big thing, as a key partner in serving the world’s energy needs, and as a tool to improve their ability to produce useful fuels from source material that is hard to process or difficult to reach.