Nuclear, the sensible way to go!

July 16, 2009

If legislators who like 10th District Congressman Mark Kirk are really concerned about reducing our dependence on foreign oil in favor of green technology, why is there so little discussion about nuclear power.  Nuclear Plants are the lowest cost and safest electricity generator, hands down, in addition to being GREEN.  

To generate the same amount of energy with wind as an average-sized nuclear plant — 1,000 megawatts —  you would need 270 square miles filled with wind turbines.  By contrast, a nuclear facility fits on less than one square mile.

Presently a dual-reactor power plant built by ComEd in 1973 stands idle in Zion. Initially some steam generator tubes were found leaking, but the tubes were closed off and the plants continued to run without jeopardizing the employees, the area citizens or the environment.  The steam generators could have been replaced for 435 million dollar, but instead ComEd decided to prematurely shutter and close both plants in January,1998.

David Hollein, a resident of Barrington Hills, formerly the Westinghouse Project Engineer for all the Commonwealth Nuclear Plants built by Westinghouse and General Electric, and who was intimately involved with the design of the nuclear units at the Zion dual reactor site, has for years (like a voice in the wilderness) been trying to alert legislators and citizens to the vast treasure of energy that remains shuttered at Zion’s dual nuclear reactor site and has been demanding a second look. 

Repeated overtures made to local legislators here in Lake County, especially 61st IL State Representative JoAnn Osmond (R) and 31st District State Senator Michael Bond (D), have all been ignored.

It would be wise to note that the two Zion Nuclear Plants are part of a MIDWEST ELECTRICITY GRID, where electricity is fed by all the operating electrical generating plants.  This grid includes all of Illinois and bordering states, including Michigan.

Europe is way ahead of America in using nuclear energy.  France gets 77% of its electricity from nuclear reactors.  Recently it has been reported that China intends to build 100 nuclear reactors.

It is folly to believe that wind turbines and solar panels can replace coal and oil.  The Zion units served Chicago and the northern quarter of Illinois.  More not less energy will be needed in years to come.   Nuclear is the only sensible way to go!

Refusing to build or use existing nuclear plants here in Illinois and across this nation could result in a substantial loss of this country’s standard of living, while keeping us overly dependent on foreign countries for oil, which is the exact opposite from what the Waxman-Markey bill promises.

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