I am a subscriber to the paper edition of the Wall Street Journal. It is a valuable source of information about the world of business. It has little in common with what people often refer to as “the liberal media”.
Several times in the past couple of weeks, however, the Journal has featured stories about the challenges facing the energy industry with regard to carbon emissions control, fuel supplies, growing demand, and capability limitations of various alternatives like wind, solar and especially biofuels. I have read each article all the way to the end in hopes of seeing some passing reference to nuclear power and each time I am disappointed. It is almost as if fission was never discovered.
I kept meaning to blog about these articles and bring them to your attention, but I hate linking to something that you cannot readily access without a subscription.
This weekend’s Saturday edition finally pushed me to make a comment that I hope will start a bit of a conversation. The Journal featured a special section on Energy – 20 whole pages of articles and advertisements about the industry. I have searched through this special section at least twice – admittedly without using a search tool since I have just a hard copy. Not once in the entire section is there a mention of nuclear or atomic power.
Many times I have been engaged in conversations in both the virtual and physical worlds where someone really wants to blame liberals for the 30 year lull in nuclear power plant construction. However, if “conservative” publications cannot even mention the word now – in 2007 – with $95 per barrel oil, increasing concerns about global warming, and a several ongoing shooting battles over oil supplying regions is this really an issue that can be blamed on “liberals”?
Heck, I am certain that the marketing staffs of major companies in the nuclear business knew about the special section. Why would they not jump at the chance to mention the fact that they are supplying technology NOW that helps in the solution to the above problems?
I asked a couple of people at the ANS meeting and was greeted with shrugs. Some of the marketing types agreed with my concerns and said they would do some checking to find out more, most of the engineering types just shrugged and some of the business types just said it was probably not considered to be in the company’s best interest to mention nuclear power at this time.
What do you think?