• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Morning Bell: Cap And Trade's Mandates And Subsidies No Way To Go Nuclear

    Following major defeats at the ballot box on Tuesday, the left’s legislative agenda suffered another huge setback yesterday when once wavering Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Judd Gregg (R-NH), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), and Susan Collins (R-ME) all signed a letter supporting Sen. George Voinovich’s (R-OH) demand that the Environmental Protection Agency provide a thorough analysis of how the Kerry-Boxer cap and trade legislation will impact the U.S. economy. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) had been pressing for swift passage of her cap and tax legislation, but conservatives on the Environment and Public Works Committee thwarted her efforts by boycotting a vote on the legislation Tuesday.

    An EPA analysis on the economic costs of cap and trade is no small issue. If Tuesday’s elections proved anything, it is that jobs and economic growth are the top concern on Americans’ minds. The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Data Analysis has found that cap and tax legislation would cost the average family-of-four almost $3,000 per year, cause 2.5 million net job losses by 2035, and a produce a cumulative gross domestic product (GDP) loss of $9.4 trillion between 2012 and 2035. The EPA has issued preliminary reports reaching different conclusions; including an October 23 report on Kerry-Boxer that found it would only cost the average American family $80 to $111 dollars per year.

    There are many fundamental problems with that EPA report, none more glaring than their fanciful assumption that nuclear power generation will nearly double in the next 25 years. This is the equivalent of about 100 additional nuclear power plants. The reality is that in the past 30 years, not one new nuclear power plant has been licensed. More importantly, the Kerry-Boxer approach to reviving the nuclear energy relies on the same failed policies that have crippled the U.S. nuclear energy for the past 30 years. Heritage fellows Jack Spencer and Nick Loris explain:

    Washington has a role to play in reducing financial barriers, but not by funding projects with taxpayer dollars. The regulatory costs and uncertainty posed by the federal bureaucracy represent significant risk to the success of the nuclear industry, just as regulatory uncertainty significantly affected the timing and budget of past nuclear plant construction. Indeed, this risk and uncertainty results in the higher prices that are most often used to justify government subsidies for nuclear projects. Efforts to reduce that risk by reforming the most obvious areas, such as the regulatory process and waste management, are nowhere to be found in the bill.

    Instead, the bill attempts to reduce the financial risk caused by regulatory delays and technological development by expanding the federal government’s responsibility — and authority — on the technical side. It promotes government intervention into areas that are either unnecessary or that should reside solely in the private sector. For example, the Boxer-Kerry bill creates a research and development program to assess plant aging, improve plant performance, engineer safer fuels, and lower overall costs. These are all areas currently being addressed by the private sector and already supported by public institutions and funds.

    Instead of handing out more government subsidies to compensate for increased government regulation, Congress should be heading in the exact opposite direction. What the nuclear industry really needs is an end to market distorting loan guarantees, a streamlined permit process for new plants and reactor designs, market reforms for nuclear waste management, and the ability to recycle spent fuel. America can create thousands of new jobs through an expansion of the energy sector. But just as with oil, coal, and natural gas, the less government intervention in the market, the better.

    Quick Hits:

    • Following major losses on Tuesday, Democrats on Capitol Hill are questioning whether they should continue supporting President Barack Obama’s agenda instead of job creation.
    • With some Democrats wavering after Tuesday’s election, House Democratic leaders are pushing for a vote on their sweeping health-care bill this Saturday.
    • According to the Washington Post, inability to lower taxes was a major factor contributing to New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine’s (D) loss on Tuesday.
    • According to Gallup, a majority of Americans now see President Barack Obama as governing from the left as compared to one year ago when as many Americans expected him to be moderate as to be liberal.
    • According to an Associated Press analysis of the Obama administration’s stimulus jobs report, more than two-thirds of the 14,506 jobs credited to the recovery act by Head Start programs simply involved pay increases.
    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    29 Responses to Morning Bell: Cap And Trade's Mandates And Subsidies No Way To Go Nuclear

    1. David, St. Louis says:

      It's almost like the federal government wants us all to be dependent on them, eh?

    2. SoCalPal-San Diego says:

      Whoops! Too little too late (so typical) by our Republican representatives. I just read that the Dem's have passed the matter in the Senate already.

    3. Arnie Rosner, Founta says:

      For intelligent people how come the environmental issues are even being discussed? Are we so dumb as to not recognize the tactics involved?

      There is no global warming! End of discussion!

      Because some lunatics in congress figure it is a way to raise taxes do the rest of us have to be so dense not to see this as another red herring?

      Come on people…wake up!

      Next there will be a tax on growing grass and planting trees. It is about excuses to raise taxes and to invent new tax basis.

      Let's set them stright…give Pelosi the finger she so richly deserves.

    4. Aman says:

      We need to force a study of the jobs loss from the health care atrocity! The NFIB estimates a 1.3 MILLION loss!! Let's see Pelosi pass a massive jobs loss bill

    5. Ron Turner says:

      It is difficult to believe that the CO2 levels are damaging or causing "Clobel Warning". I'm curious as to why noone has challenged the "Globel Warning/Claimate Change" issued in the proper venue. Can the so called scientists, including Al Gore, that are promoting this with the dems provide any support for theory. I did contact congressman Dennis Moore's office I was told there had several debates that could support the theory and would send me documentaion for this but has not yet provided any documentation.

    6. Wildcat from Dallast says:

      Cap and trade disaster by Kerry-boxer

      The problems associated with the Kerry-Boxer cap and trade bill, like any ridiculous such legislation to limit a natural byproduct of life (such as CO2), then implement an artificial tax on that substance while preventing the growth of known energy resources are huge. The first issue is it’s artificiality in the first place. Why don’t we simply prevent all the progressive liberal and environmental activists from breathing (much less speaking) in order to significantly reduce the amount of CO2 in America first? The actual science understood by the preponderance of educated people in the world (including great American patriots) does not support any form of man-made climate change. The known science about climate change reveals cycles of 20 to 30 or more years in length commensurate with other naturally occurring phenomena involving ocean water temperature, volcanic activity and the combination of sunspot activity and the changing temperature of the sun; none of which man affects.

      One must realize the science these two and their cohorts are using (or ignoring) is of no concern to them. Look at the other restrictions to determine the hideous agenda which is true objective of this horrendous piece of legislation. Ask yourself what known energy sources are we as Americans know exist within our grasp that would greatly benefit the American citizens by providing affordable sources of energy for existing methods of production (and transportation) as well as enhance our economy to grow without the threat of low supplies or foreign market manipulation thereby making our goods and services too expensive? Why do they not only allow China to pollute rather excessively while their economy is growing at an unprecedented pace but even revere one of their most notorious leaders, Mao? Then ask yourself why we in America have not built a single nuclear power generating facility in 30 years or more when that is obviously a far more efficient method to create electrical power? And, which countries by the way are they supporting doing exactly that [North Korea and Iran)?

      The taxes associated with any “cap and trade” bill, including the Kerry-Boxer bill are designed to hurt the American citizens and virtually stop the American economy. These two, as many other progressives and their liberal as well as to so-called environmentalists, are of the firm belief that Americans consume too much of the world’s resources and needs to be punished by their draconian policies for the perceived damage to the environment as part of the redistribution of wealth concept first expounded by Karl Marx and regurgitated by Obama. Their method will be to make everyone suffer equally rather than enhance the superior working system we all know as Capitalism which raises the quality of life for all who actively participate.

      Any such “cap and trade” bill that bubbles through the system needs to be stopped upon learning of its existence and the creators of such un-American legislation investigated for conspiracy to commit treason. The scope of such an investigation should include the individuals and entities associated with the money trail supporting such an abomination. In the mean time our elected representatives need to understand our message of no such subpar anti-American legislation whether they answer the phone or not!

    7. Ed, ohio says:

      where do they plan to put the spent fuel from reactors these new reactors…since they just walked away from the iron mountain storage in Nevada??? And will EPA accelerate quick approvals for new Nuclear power plant construction?? answers are NO! Get on them for misleading public with these lies. I believe your numbers are low, and EPA mandates of future green construction building codes with explode exponentially. Share with Congress the Al Gore lies. Endorse debate between Lord Monckton and Gore before Congress primwe time.

    8. Jan Rose says:

      There were 1,452 programs in ten agencies, prior to Obama, which gave out taxpayer money in grants and loans. Many of those monies are carried futher into processes whereas the taxpayer is again the Guarantee. This appears to have expanded with the Serve America Act as well as other bills. So much for page 188 of his book for change, the audicity of me thinking someone was going to rein in the spending!!!

    9. Jeff Dover, Scottsda says:

      Cap and Trade, "Public Option" and the rest rely on taxpayers paying their taxes and going along with it. Most of us know the two "issues" are patently absurd in concept and will be ruinous in application. By any reading of the constitution relying on an English dictionary definition of the words therein — as opposed to the common leftist practice of pulling meaning from the aether — the proposed legislation regarding the two are unconstitutional.

      What if we don't pay those taxes?

    10. Kevin, Milford, IN says:

      The science on global warming aka climate change is not settled. It is onething to argue that it will place a huge burden on the economy, it's another to argue that it is simply a lie a hoax being commited against our citezens in an effort by the progressives to gain more control over the people. This is a more convincing argument but one that causes individuals to put themselves out there where the media can make fun of us. We should not just take the safe way and argue economics! The climate crisis is simply a bold face lie.

    11. okiejim says:

      It is disturbing that we have Republicans who cannot make a decision until they determine which way the wind is blowing. Senator Inhofe is left to swing alone on the global warming issue until his fellow senators begin to feel the pendulum may be swinging back to the right again after the Virginia and New jersey elections. Come on people, where are your backbones?

    12. Jonathan Seid, Willi says:

      There is no credibility for this environmental program. It is a political grab that benefits power brokers and their closest contributors. That makes it a corrupt program.

      This is liberal politics.

    13. Dean-Texas/Alaska says:

      Better start watching "road warrior," folks. The Dims are intent on collapsing the USD. Can anyone say we are not well on our way?

    14. Barab--Tn. says:

      Why aren't we as upset that the goverment doesn't have the same health care as the people, are they above us. We need to get something going on that.

    15. Barb--Tn. says:

      what does undergoing moderation mean.

    16. JiffyGeo-GA says:

      Think, and look before you spit. Third parties will work if you have two other weak parties. When Ross Perot decided to run on a 3rd party ticket, it split the conserative vote and put Bill Clinton in the White House. Is that what we want top happen again? Sometimes making my vote count the most overrides my desire to vote the way my emotions tell me to vote.

    17. Ken Jarvis - Las Veg says:

      Does Rush Sound HAPPY to you?

      Not to me – He is just another Mean Old Rich Greedy Lonely Guy.

      Because he ISN'T HAPPY – he doesn't want anyone to be happy. He has a —Job, —HCare, —$$$, —Security, —is the Leader of the GOP.

      His HATE must be what drives Women away from him.

    18. Bobbie Jay says:

      Kill cap and trade! Nothing but a vacuum, sucking America and her people of all principles an values and freedoms. Open door of corruption.


    19. Pingback: Cap And Trade’s Mandates And Subsidies No Way To Go Nuclear | 73 Wire

    20. John, Colorado says:

      Hey, Congress and the Fed are looking for another giant pot of money to DEVOUR.

      They can tax America more with Cap and Tax.

      They can also borrow more from the Saudis, who are looking for oil welfare. (They've been lying about their reserves.)

      Let's whip them all, and learn how to split water with energy out of the vacuum, and have hydrogen on demand, and just eliminate the following problems: energy supply, global warming circus, Middle East oil dependency, Saudi and Iranian funding of terrorism and corruption, Russian military buildup.

    21. Pete Turano-Albuquer says:

      Am I reading correctly that the Kerry-Boxer bill assumes an increase in "clean" energy production from nuclear power. There aren't going to be any new Nuke plants. Pres Obama shut down Yucca Mt nuke waste disposal site before it opened. Millions $s wasted. Why? No explanation. We need to demand and explanation of why Yucca Mt is untenable. Is it dangerous? What will become of the Nuke waste that must be accumulating from currrent plants. Was NV/Sen Reid politics involved? Somebody in Congress needs to jump on this, now!

    22. Citizen Joe says:

      Well,dont forget, with cap and trade,a company can over polute,bypass reduction of polution y createing dummy companies to trade off their excess.Pumping out more polution?? just create more dummy companies,split the excess,,all their companies combined show LESS polutants ,a reduced total(on paper),,and a pat on the back from regulators for their efforts to save the enviroment,staying at or below guide line polutant standards.Ans all along they did not change a thing in operations,did not lower ppm polutants,and in some cases increased them. But with the cap and trade,it makes crooks look good.All thanks to politics as usual,business owned government,and lots of kickback funded retirement funds for government and the wealthy.

      Dont let this Cap and Trade scam go any further.Vote out the crooks,change the lawyers in Washington,as well as State and Local government,and KICK all those lobbyist out of the country.

      Citizen Joe

    23. Crane, Louisiana says:

      I suppose these Democrats think we can spend ourselves into prosperity. They, and everyone else, need to be more concerned about helping working people keep what money they earn and working toward job creation for others. This will give the government more money.

      I still opposed to the Obama's or whoever's health bill it is. If the people on the US Government payroll won't participate in this Health Plan, why do they expect the rest of us to participate. Do they think they are too good for it?

      Everyday the news gets more sickening and scary. I do believe that Obama will do whatever he wants regardless of what others think.

    24. Lynn B. DeSpain says:

      The only reality of Cap and Trade is the creation of more revenue for the Federal Government. That is its only purpose. Anyone who believes different is either very naive, or just plain stupid.

    25. Jeff Alexaner, Kansa says:

      The shocking part is the Stimulus bill at 800B. Which they say created or save 600,000 jobs (thats 1.3M per job). With 800B you can build a solar plant in New Mexico that would supply the entire US with electricity then you would even need the cap and trade bill and it would create some jobs you could actually count.

    26. Nicolai Alatzas says:

      Recent Nuclear construction cost estimates

      2007 estimates have considerable uncertainty in overnight cost, and vary widely from $2,950/kWe (overnight cost) to a Moody's Investors Service conservative estimate of between $5,000 and $6,000/kWe (final or "all-in" cost).[11]

      However, commodity prices shot up in 2008, and so all types of plants will be more expensive than previously calculated[12] In June 2008 Moody's estimated that the cost of installing new nuclear capacity in the U.S. might possibly exceed $7,000/kWe in final cost.[13]

      The reported prices at six new pressurized water reactors are indicative of costs for that type of plant:[14]

      * February 2008 — For two new AP1000 reactors at its Turkey Point site Florida Power & Light calculated overnight capital cost from $2444 to $3582 per kW, which were grossed up to include cooling towers, site works, land costs, transmission costs and risk management for total costs of $3108 to $4540 per kilowatt. Adding in finance charges increased the overall figures to $5780 to $8071 per kW.

      * March 2008 — For two new AP1000 reactors in Florida Progress Energy announced that if built within 18 months of each other, the cost for the first would be $5144 per kilowatt and the second $3376/kW – total $9.4 billion. Including land, plant components, cooling towers, financing costs, license application, regulatory fees, initial fuel for two units, owner's costs, insurance and taxes, escalation and contingencies the total would be about $14 billion.

      * May 2008 — For two new AP1000 reactors at the Virgil C. Summer Nuclear Generating Station in South Carolina South Carolina Electric and Gas Co. and Santee Cooper expected to pay $9.8 billion (which includes forecast inflation and owners' costs for site preparation, contingencies and project financing).

      * November 2008 — For two new AP1000 reactors at its Lee site Duke Energy Carolinas raised the cost estimate to $11 billion, excluding finance and inflation, but apparently including other owners costs.

      * November 2008 — For two new AP1000 reactors at its Bellefonte site TVA updated its estimates for overnight capital cost estimates ranged to $2516 to $4649/kW for a combined construction cost of $5.6 to 10.4 billion (total costs of $9.9 to $17.5 billion).

      * On April 9, 2008, Georgia Power Company reached a contract agreement for two AP1000 reactors to be built at Vogtle,[15] at an estimated final cost of $14 billion plus $3 billion for necessary transmission upgrades.[16]

      These are just construction costs. They do not include fuel costs, environmental impact, maintenance, operating costs, insurance, decommissioning and waste removal and storage for the 1,000,000 years of monitoring by the EPA.

      Solar costs on the Retail lvl of around 6500-8500 per kW national Average not including incentives. Compare the manufacturer rate for each kW produced at around $1000 dollars per kWhr. This is

      Not to mention renewable energy will equalize energy markets we should she a plateau in energy costs once renewable energy has a large enough hold on the infrastructure. Making Nuclear a risky investment with little or no return. Now to understand the energy output of Uranium VS. CIGS.

      1kg CIGS = 5kg Uranium By Martin Roscheisen, CEO – December 16, 2008The notion of a kilogram of enriched Uranium conjures up an image of a powerful amout of energy. Enough to power an entire city for years when used in a nuclear power plant, or enough to flatten an entire county when used in a bomb — that’s presumably what many people would say if one asked them about their thoughts.

      In our new solar cell technology, we use an active material called CIGS, a Copper based semiconductor. How does this stack up against enriched Uranium?

      Here’s a noteworthy fact, pointed out to me by one of our engineers: It turns out that 1kg of CIGS, embedded in a solar cell, produces 5 times as much electricity as 1kg of enriched Uranium, embedded in a nuclear power plant.

      Or said differently, 1kg of CIGS is equivalent to 5kg of enriched Uranium in terms of the energy the materials deliver in solar and nuclear respectively.

      The Uranium is burned and then stored in a nuclear waste facility; the CIGS material produces power for at least the warranty period of the solar cell product after which it can then be recycled and reused an indefinite number of times.

      All this being said do you still believe in Nuclear? The facts are rather clear……

      I did not really want to get into this because I assume people realize that the active ingredients for solar is Silicon the third most prevalent element in the earths crust. Mining costs for Uranium far exceed the cost for picking up dirt and removing silicon that for solar and are indeed limited. Cost of Uranium is $100 per pound and cost of Silicon $50 if you look back at my Uranium vs. Cigs section of my last email you will see the potential energy of these two items. And this is not a mute point because the cost of recycling uranium increases the cost of plant production. However as evidence by Canadian Solar we know that we can recycle silicon and make it cost effective. I can not find numbers on recycling uranium but I assure you I will. Plants that are built only have a shelf life of 40-60 years.

      Also transmission losses which = 40% by the time it gets to your house. A solar panel over 25 years still produces 80% + and at 50 years 60%+ and so on and so on. It far exceeds the life of nuclear. So by doing this math 1 kW of Solar PV on a roof top is 40% more efficeint that nuke given transmission loss. So for arguments sake we will give solar a value of 140 and Nuke a value of 100. We know that solar will loose about 1% a year so in 20 years solar = 120 in 40 years 100 and 60 years or when a nuke plant is decommisioned 80. The solar will keep doing this and Nukes will keep failing.

      The US recognizes that Nuclear can not be a cost effective electric supply but it won't stop them from making us pay to subsidize expensive transmission of Nuclear Power. To encourage development of nuclear power, under the Nuclear Power 2010 Program the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has offered interested parties the opportunity to introduce France's model for licensing and to subsidize 25% to 50% of the construction cost overruns due to delays for the first six new plants. Several applications have been made, two sites have been chosen to receive new plants, and other projects are pending (see Nuclear Power 2010 Program).

      So "We The People" are going to subsidize 50% up front and pay for it again on the backside. Now that is a failed policy.

      The government is making moves to pull out of the waste storage business making new plants and owners responsible for storing this material indefinitely. Which puts the crimps on future of Nuclear here in the US.

      The Cost of Construction for a CSP (concentrated Solar electricity) which are being designed to create power 24 hrs a day through stored energy is $1 per kW compared to nuclear @ $3000-7000

      Andasol 1 a parabolic CSP was constructed at the cost of around €300 million (US$380 million) to build. This is continuous power output 24 hrs a day of 50 mW and annual production of 180 gigawatt hours.

      If you need more info I will gladly supply it. But if I fail to educate you than it is my own shortcoming as a representative to my industry. And I might just go back to surfing = )

    27. Nicolai Alatzas says:

      Above- was clipped from a discussion I had with a colleague of mine. If you can read through it you find some interesting information on Real costs of Nuke Power.

    28. Dennis A. Social Cir says:

      This is the way of the dems, they want it and will shove it down our throats. We the people had better stand up now or lose this country for ever. They are wrong, pelosi, reid and obama are just power crazy and want more.

    29. P A Jones, Farmingto says:

      It is ludicrous that Obama's bunch says nuclear power will double. He just shut down the Nevada Nuclear Waste Project. Nowhere to put the waste now.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.