The Department of Energy has been holding a series of public meetings to share information and gather reactions to proposals to build and operate one or more of three types of facilities related to the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership program.
The program leaders currently envision that there will be three new facilities built – a plant to recycle used nuclear fuel to recover heavy metals for further use in fission reactors, a nuclear fuel research center to investigate new fuel forms and new methods of fuel recycling, and an advanced fission reactor that can operate and test new fuel forms.
The meetings have generally been held in communities close to sites where there are organizations that have received grants to study the costs and benefits of hosting one or more of the facilities.
As might be expected when there are high technology, well paying, secure jobs at stake, there have been a number of relatively large and supportive crowds. Of course, the groups that have made a career out of opposing nuclear energy have also been attending, but so far, it appears that they have been outnumbered by the people that favor the concept.
If you want to read more about some of the meetings here are a couple of links:
- Hundreds Attend GNEP Meeting – From Local News8 in Idaho Falls.
- Hanford proposal riles crowd – From Mid-Columbia Tri-City Herald
The second story on that list is another interesting example of how headline writers and story writers often see things differently. Reading the headline, one might assume that the story talked about a crowd of unhappy (“riled”) people, but here is a quote from the article that paints a different picture:
About 300 people packed the hearing in Pasco, with crowd sentiment favoring those who spoke in favor of a new production mission for Hanford.
“The world is going nuclear and America should as well,” Benton County Commissioner Claude Oliver said to enthusiastic applause. He was the first of 60 people signed up to speak.
But the crowd also was sprinkled with a few Mid-Columbians, along with people from Oregon and western Washington, who oppose Hanford as the site of the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership, or GNEP.
Bottom line – read the whole article, not just the headline. As a guy who spent a good portion of the 80s with only the headlines available (that is what we saw on board submarines), I consider it shameful that some civilians on shore duty do not take a bit more time to determine what is really happening in the world.
- Idaho Samizdat: Nuke Notes – Idaho aligns its stars for GNEP