April 25, 2022

WELL, GOOD: Joe Biden nukes the environmental Left.

At a moment when the Russo-Ukrainian war is driving all energy prices sky-high, President Joe Biden has not done much right. This is reflected in his polling.

But there is at least one thing he is doing right, and he deserves the encouragement to keep it up.

The Washington Examiner reported last week that Biden committed $6 billion toward saving financially distressed commercial nuclear power plants. This is good. But Biden needs to do more.

If the United States is to produce and export enough liquefied natural gas to help wean Europe off Russia’s supply, it will need to export significantly more. Part of this goal can be achieved through increased production, but the transition will happen much more quickly if proven and reliable sources of energy such as nuclear are maintained and expanded. The less natural gas American utilities have to burn, the more producers can ship to nations across Europe, ranging from Croatia to Spain to Belgium to Lithuania.

There is a second reason for Biden to embrace nuclear power: His own agenda of carbon reduction depends upon it. Aside from the conversion of coal plants to natural gas, which has already caused U.S. emissions to plummet, the expansion of nuclear power is the only realistic area where his administration will find meaningful reductions in carbon emissions. A loss of nuclear capacity, in contrast, would be catastrophic for Biden’s plans.

There is a reason Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm played up in her announcement the fact that nuclear plants “contribute more than half of our carbon-free electricity.” In fact, aside from hydroelectric power, nuclear energy is the only source of carbon-free electricity that is both reliable and truly scalable.

Unlike windmills and solar panels, which are intermittent sources of power, nuclear plants can generate electricity at all hours and in all seasons of the year. Nuclear is also 100% carbon-free, whereas the processes involved in manufacturing solar panels and windmills produce significant carbon emissions.

Anyone who really believed in a “climate emergency,” a “climate crisis,” or a mass extinction would obviously support going nuclear to whatever extent is possible. The strange resistance to nuclear power among so many purported environmentalists evinces a deep-down lack of belief that global warming is even real. And why should anyone else believe them about climate if they don’t believe themselves?

Well, Biden was bound to do something right eventually, even if by accident.

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