Nuclear? I don’t think so…

November 6th, 2010


A little birdie sent this about “our Stevie,” former Minnesota Asst. A.G. Steve Corneli, now a Senior V.P. at NRG, is in the news.

Corneli said nuclear is established and the existing fleet of nuclear reactors provide the lowest cost power currently on the grid, but there hasn’t been a new plant built in roughly 30 years.
“We actually think that nuclear power has the potential to be the real foundation of clean energy technology,” he said.


Steve Corneli — he was the one who “clarified” that nuclear stranded costs (BIG BIG $$$$ which Northern States Power was claiming were due in the event of deregulation which they were fighting for) was really stranded ASSETS!  Yes, dear readers, you’ve heard this before, but if you haven’t read this report, from the dark ages of 1997, please do, because incorporating this shift in perspective on stranded costs can free your soul!

Corneli on Stranded Assets

And you may remember that dreadful idea on his watch that NRG should put an IGCC (coal gasification) plant in Delaware at its Indian River site with THIS, below, as a site plan, I kid you not:


Oh, my, that instills confidence, doesn’t it!

And so what’s he up to now?  He’s pushing nuclear power, and next to him, there’s the Obama administration pushing nuclear power… and they wonder why we’re “disappointed?”


The fate of nuclear power after midterm elections

Posted on 11/03/2010

by Brian Wheeler, Associate Editor, Power-Gen Worldwide

In the largest shift of power since 1948, Republicans took over the U.S. House on midterm election night. And the nuclear industry could benefit from the Republican takeover as part of the clean energy legislation.

In a statement released the morning of Election Day, Don Gillispie, CEO of Alternate Energy Holdings, Inc., said that if Republicans won, the other big winner would be nuclear power. Well, we do know that Republicans have won the House and have made up ground in the Senate as well, even though Democrats still hold the majority.

Historically there has been more support from Republicans for nuclear power. But Steve Corneli, senior vice president of market and climate policy for NRG Energy, said there is an increasing awareness from Democrats that nuclear power can be an important part of energy independence and a zero-carbon emission future.

Michigan representative Fred Upton, like many Republicans, is a supporter of nuclear power in the U.S. Upton is also a strong contender to head the House Energy and Commerce Committee; the committee that sees over the national energy policy.

“Through a greater commitment to nuclear, we have a unique opportunity to cut greenhouse gases, provide stability to our electrical supply and create jobs,” Upton told Reuters.

John Boehner (R-OH) is expected to take over as the new Speaker of the House and is also a strong proponent of nuclear power.

“The new Congress will be more pro-nuclear than any Congress we’ve seen in decades,” said Gillispie.

And President Obama continues to promote nuclear power, too.

“There’s been discussion about how we can restart our nuclear industry as a means of reducing our dependence on foreign oil and reducing greenhouse gases,” Obama said during a speech the day after the midterm elections. “Is that an area where we can move forward?”

As of now, that seems to be possible. The White House has requested an additional $36 billion in federal loan guarantees for new nuclear plants and it seems that Republicans are likely to support the measure, even with a big focus during the campaign on reducing government spending.

But Corneli said the interesting part is that the important policy measures that are needed to help jump start the nuclear renaissance are the ones with the lowest cost to federal treasury, and those are the federal loan guarantees, “which really don’t cost the treasury anything.”

“Essentially it is self-financing,” he said. “It seems like the stars could be lining up right now for a boost in nuclear power development.”

Corneli said nuclear is established and the existing fleet of nuclear reactors provide the lowest cost power currently on the grid, but there hasn’t been a new plant built in roughly 30 years.
“We actually think that nuclear power has the potential to be the real foundation of clean energy technology,” he said.

Gillispie seems to agree.

“When the history of nuclear power is written, Nov. 2, 2010 will be a major turning point for the industry,” said Gillispie. “It will mark the beginning of a dramatic resurgence for nuclear power.”

VOTE!!! Just do it!

November 1st, 2010


Alan’s been working on an election day missive, and I’ve been NOT working on, avoiding, an election day post.  What’s to say?  There’s only one thing to say: GET OUT AND VOTE!


Alan’s from Delaware, and there they have Christine “Where in the Constitution is the separation of church and state” O’Donnell, what an embarrassment, how can she show her face in public, much less run for office, and worse, that people voted for her ?!?!?!?! Listen to this, one that I, particularly as an “officer of the court” sworn to uphold the constitution, had to chuckle over:

In Minnesota, there’s a gubernatorial election goin’ on… Tim “Green Chameleon” Pawlenty is on the way out. There’s Tom Emmer, right up there with O’Donnell, there’s Horner polling at very low two digits, and there’s Mark Dayton, odds on winner.  The good news is that neither Kelliher or Entenza are on the ballot.  More good news is that Dayton does want to act on the tax drain on the middle and lower classes and equalize percentages for those with higher income.  Yeah, ’bout time… Sometimes he looks like my little bro’ and sometimes he acts like him — so that can go both ways… What really bothers me is that he quit while a Senator, so what’s to say he’ll do the job?


He seems to have good taste in dogs:

dayton-shep1 dayton-shep2

But Kady and Sadie are too young to vote, and would probably cancel each other out anyway.

I’m a Tea-Partier:

“They are socialists.” “They are fascists.” EH?!?!?!?! I WANT MY FREE CAR! A couple of weeks ago a chiropractor I know in the cities said that “Obama is the anti-christ.” HUH? Someone I know who is using Medicare was ranting about “Obamacare” and forcing people to get health care from the government. SAY WHAT?!?! Today someone asked me, discussing a company siting utility infrastructure in their face, said “”don’t they care about people?” Well, no, they don’t. CORPORATIONS DON’T CARE! Why, it’s not even in the equation … sigh… the requirement of a corporation acting in the public interest in exchange for limited liability as a corporation went by the wayside a LONG, LONG time ago.

This came over the wire earlier from Eric Francis, and says it pretty well, what’s got me scratching and shaking my head, the way people are mouthing scripts heard with no understanding of the implications, and taking it a step further and voting against their interests. I can barely stand to think about it… if I do I start on my own rants… don’t even want to wrap my head around it, so I’m taking the easy way out, here’s how Eric Francis puts it:

It is amazing to hear people who collect and depend on Medicare speak against Medicare; to hear poor people support candidates who would eliminate the minimum wage, cut Social Security or give it to a totally unregulated Wall Street, and then complain about over-regulation. It’s beyond my comprehension to understand why any woman would vote for a candidate who wants to make a woman exercising her reproductive rights into a crime. Why would anyone want to repeal a law that protects people from insurance companies banning them if their child has a pre-existing condition? But, it seems that many do. And they may have no clue what they’re against.

This all may sound like an argument not to vote — but actually I’m here to remind you to make some time to vote Tuesday. I know it’s a small gesture, and we need to participate in our constitutional republic every day of the year. But Tuesday is an especially good day. The kinds of problems our country, and our world, are facing call for our attention and involvement.

Go vote. Then get involved. It’s getting too weird in here…

Last week, Lesie Glustrom, a cohort via “No New Coal Plants,” was featured in a big spread in her home state:


The last word is action

by Nathan Rice – High Country News

Name: Leslie Glustrom
Age: 55
Vocation: Mother of two, founding member of the nonprofit group Clean Energy Action
Past Jobs: Biochemist, science teacher, science writer
Favorite activity on her half-day weekends: “Being in the woods alone, talking to the trees.”
Favorite sport: Ice hockey
Thoughts on coal: “I’m a climate change activist who is worried that we don’t have enough coal. That’s an ironic place to be.”

Few people get excited about public utility meetings. But at the Tri-State Rural Electric Co-op in Westminster, Colo., on a spring night, Leslie Glustrom is squirming in her seat. Eager to address the Tri-State executives, she scribbles notes about obscure energy data, her brown hair short above broad shoulders.

“Tri-State is sitting on top of world-class wind and solar resources,” Glustrom says. The co-op powers rural electric utilities in Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming and Nebraska — “the Saudi Arabia of wind and solar,” she says, gesturing emphatically. Glustrom, a clean energy advocate, believes it’s Tri-State’s duty to exploit those resources.

In the circular boardroom, about 40 advocates and industry representatives in business attire mingle under fluorescent lights, munching donuts and drinking coffee. Glustrom offers firm handshakes but abstains from refreshments. “I want to maintain my independence,” she explains. Tri-State’s managers sit behind a row of microphones, lending a diplomatic air to the co-op’s first attempt at officially inviting the public to comment on its planning process.
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