22 September 2009 1 Comment

Our Nuclear Mayor Castro

Welcome to the first day of fall – it is cool and breezy and even rainy – a stark change from yesterday in San Antonio.

Yet there is no stark change in our Nuclear Mayor.

Last night Nuclear Mayor Castro declared that he had made up his mind on the nuclear option for CPS Energy’s and San Antonio’s future. He proceeded to outline the reasons why.

He sounded like a mouthpiece for CPS Energy and the Nuclear Industry, continuing the rhetoric and attempting to pass it off as “a decision based on merit.”

The Nuclear Mayor and I are only a year apart in age, yet it is obvious we are a world apart in logic. He had and still has the opportunity to be a statesman and leader for our community on this issue, which will define a generation in this country. Others look to the youth to make better choices than our forefathers, yet this youth, our Nuclear Mayor Castro, is falling lock step with those forefathers in remaining in the box of close-minded, rhetorical politicians who care more about their ascent to power and prominence in the short term and even less about the long term results of their decisions on the world community.

Why do I make these charges?

* San Antonio is first on the list for getting a permit to build the first nuclear reactor in the U.S. in 30 years.
* Wall Street won’t finance the building of nuclear reactors,
* the federal government is only providing loan guarantees of $18.5 billion for all the nuclear reactors to be built (divided equally at this point, we’re looking at about $4.6 billion for us if there are only four),
* we have no cost guarantees and the cost estimate has gone up from $5.4 billion to $13 billion in the last two years,
* we have no way to deal with the waste generated by the existing nuclear reactors the world over let alone new ones,
* we’re talking about spending $500 million on PAPERWORK for these new nuclear reactors – an amount of money that could bolster existing renewable energy plans and give us a return on our $
* we have a plan – Mission Verde – nuclear is not sustainable and therefore does not fit into the plan
* a nationally renowned nuclear fusion engineer, Dr. Arjun Makhijani, President of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research and author of Carbon Free Nuclear Free: A Roadmap for U.S. Energy Policy, offered his services free of charge to the City of San Antonio if our mayor would become El Alcalde Verde and LEAD SA into a sustainable future, it only takes political will.
* independent analysis and research has shown CPS Energy is misrepresenting, obfuscating, and omitting pertinent information – see energiamia.org and nukefreetexas.org for studies and more
* Drought conditions have prevailed, but CPS wants to use another 23,170 gallons of water per minute to generate power, most of which, ~2/3rds, will be lost to evaporation – http://nukefreetexas.org/downloads/ross_report.pdf
* From Moody’s Global…New Nuclear Generation: Ratings Pressure Increasing
..from a credit perspective, the risks of building a new nuclear generation are hard to ignore, entailing significantly higher business and operating risk profiles, with construction risk, huge capital costs, and continual shifts in national energy policy… Moody’s has said repeatedly that they will downgrade any utility who builds new nuclear – this in turn will effect our bond interest rates for all City bonds in existence and in the future resulting in higher taxes to pay the difference!
* this deal involves getting into bed with a company, NRG, that is rated speculative or “junk” grade – Ba3 (questionable credit quality) –Read more here
* On August 27th the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board (ASLB) Panel found that the nuclear applicant, South Texas Project Nuclear Operating Company (STPNOC), had failed to adequately analyze issues raised by concerned citizens in their Petition to Intervene in the proposed expansion at STP.

What of the above makes the decision to go new nuclear a good idea for residents of San Antonio?

What are these “merits” that Nuclear Mayor Castro keeps referring to?

Will we ever find out?

Not likely! – yet i can be proven wrong…