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warpig
10-31-2010, 11:17 AM
http://spectator.org/archives/2010/10/31/nuclear-renaissance-blossomswi


This summer China surpassed the United States as the world's largest producer of energy. What was noteworthy, however, is not what China has accomplished over the past 10 years -- doubling its energy capacity -- but what it is planning for its future.

Under construction now in China are 23 nuclear reactors, many originally of American design. The Chinese are building four Westinghouse AP1000s -- a model our Nuclear Regulatory Commission has not even approved yet. On the drawing boards are at least 30 more projects. By 2020, China's nuclear complex will be more than half the size of the U.S.'s aging fleet of 104.

At this point, the world probably doesn't need much persuading. Outside America's borders, the long-awaited Nuclear Renaissance is now fully under way. There are currently 60 reactors under construction around the globe, with countries as diverse as Vietnam, Brazil, Turkey, and Jordan planning nuclear programs.

What is America's role in this? Not much, except perhaps for running after everyone shouting, "Hey, wait a minute, we invented this technology." On the basis of outdated treaties and outmoded concerns about nuclear proliferation, we are currently: a) telling South Korea it cannot reprocess its own spent fuel rods, and b) telling Jordan it cannot process its own uranium. Both countries are furious at America's buttinski ways and are politely telling us to get lost. After all, both countries have many other options to which to turn.

THEY CAN HARDLY be blamed. Of the half-dozen major players in nuclear construction now, General Electric is the only American company still on the field and it is running in last place. With hardly any customers, GE has tried to revive its fortunes by partnering with Hitachi. Rumors persist that it will eventually sell its nuclear division to the Japanese and quit the field altogether. "No GE CEO has ever made money at nuclear and I don't expect to, either," says CEO Jeff Immelt.


So the world is going nuclear without our help.

This will be the first time since the days of the American Revolution that the U.S. has not led a technological revolution. Railroads, central electricity, the automobile, the airplane, the Internet -- all propelled us to the forefront of international competition while securing our economic dominance. Now we are lagging far behind in what will certainly be the prime energy source of the 21st century. The consequences may not show up in our economy for another two to three decades. When they do, however, they will be significant. 

Wei Wu Wei
10-31-2010, 11:22 AM
We really need nuclear power infrastructure. Unfortunately, I don't see how we can get to it because liberals are terrified of NUKULAR and conservatives are terrified of government spending (even though massive government spending is literally the only way our nation accomplished it's greatest feats such as winning World Wars, the Manhattan Project, the Space Race, and the utilization of the Internet)

m00
10-31-2010, 11:28 AM
We really need nuclear power infrastructure. Unfortunately, I don't see how we can get to it because liberals are terrified of NUKULAR and conservatives are terrified of government spending (even though massive government spending is literally the only way our nation accomplished it's greatest feats such as winning World Wars, the Manhattan Project, the Space Race, and the utilization of the Internet)

I'm sorry, but you are wrong. The problem with nuclear power in the US is that it's over-regulated. Things that are over regulated cost more to the private developer. And then on the flip side we give subsidies to obsolete energy sources.

Wei Wu Wei
10-31-2010, 11:29 AM
Everyone screams DEBT when it comes to spending as if the US economy is any way comparable to household finances. Massive spending on infrastructure projects are INVESTMENTS, not handouts.

If you had a company and you could spend some money, you could lay the groundwork for future growth, you can purchase machines that increase your productivity, you can spend this money (yes, and taking on debt) on investments which will, over time, pay for themselves.

Unfortuately, today it seems we are only able to see a few months into the future, and we beleive that any debt is bad, even though it should be obvious that investing in the future SAVES MONEY and actually works out in the long run. Everyone with money (wealthy elites and government officials) seems to be acting like we are in some sort of Casino and all long-term planning is useless and we should maximize our gains RIGHT NOW RIGHT NOW.

The Chinese government has been engaging in MASSIVE spending, building roads, towers, public transit, and energy infrastructure. Yeah yeah tax and spend we know it's bad to do but maybe we shouldn't be lecturing them while they pass us up.

m00
10-31-2010, 11:33 AM
Everyone screams DEBT when it comes to spending as if the US economy is any war comparable to household finances. Massive spending on infrastructure projects are INVESTMENTS, not handouts.

No, they are handouts. The districts that get the projects are the ones that have the most politically connected senators. Such projects are rewards for political loyalty, paid for by the taxpayer.


If you had a company and you could spend some money, you could lay the groundwork for future growth, you can purchase machines that increase your productivity, you can spend this money (yes, and taking on debt) on investments which will, over time, pay for themselves.

No I couldn't. You apparently don't understand the concept of government regulation. Go try to build a nuke plant and see what happens. Doesn't matter how much money you have. You'll be spending more money in studies to examine the impact of your project on the migration patters of tree squirrels than on the project itself. We basically have a bribe system in effect, where the bribe is politically currency.



The Chinese government has been engaging in MASSIVE spending, building roads, towers, public transit, and energy infrastructure. Yeah yeah tax and spend we know it's bad to do but maybe we shouldn't be lecturing them while they pass us up.

It's also a really shitty place to live. Have you ever been there?