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Letters to the Editor

Wed., March 5, 2014, midnight

Power up the reporting

A Feb. 19 article on the U.S. Energy Department’s pending $6.5 billion loan guarantee for the first nuclear power plant to be built in the United States since 1977 included unattributed remarks from an Atlanta-based Southern Company official that “federal assistance was not needed to complete the project.” And, cue the sound of crickets chirping on the issue of why there’s a grand ceremony for taking the loan if the utility group behind the project doesn’t need it.

The Spokesman-Review could’ve augmented the Associated Press coverage to shed light not only on why wealthy for-profit utilities are happy to accept the loan if it’s supposedly not even needed, but also on why the article stated “government monitors warned the final cost (of the $14 billion-estimated project) is likely to be higher.”

For example, try debunking false corporate claims that nuclear power supposedly is clean or even “clean-ish.” The S-R could’ve included archived documentation on enormous nuclear waste disposal costs for hundreds of thousands of years, wastes proven to be the most toxic substances known not only to humankind, but to all biological entities, wastes that have no proven safe storage methods for virtually eternal toxicity periods.

Please try harder next time, OK?

Rob Ethington


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