by Michael dEstries
Categories: Causes.

bonnie.jpgWhatever side of the nuclear power debate you stand on, there’s no denying the passionate spirit of those for and against. Entertainers are generally anti-nuclear; from Martin Sheen to Alec Baldwin. Not surprisingly, a large number of musicians are also in the thick of it.

With new legislation currently before Congress authorizing the Department of Energy to provide virtually unlimited loan guarantees for funding of new nuclear reactors, a massive effort to drop the billions offered is underway by musicians. Spearheading the efforts are Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne and Graham Nash. Together with support from Ben Harper, Maroon 5, Melissa Etheridge, Pearl Jam, Greenpeace, the NRDC, and other individuals and organizations, they’ve launched a new campaign called Nuke Free. From the petition,

“We ask that all members of Congress join us in working to remove from the pending Energy Bill massively expensive loan guarantees—potentially a virtual blank check from taxpayers— for the building of many more nuclear power plants. We strongly support those parts of this Energy Bill that advance Renewable Portfolio Standards, increased fuel efficiency for automobiles, and other safe, clean solutions to global warming.”

Check out the video below — or visit the official site for more information!

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

View all posts by Michael dEstries →
  • James Aach

    It’s quite reasonable in a democracy for citizens to present their views to Congress. But as someone who works in the nuclear industry (and likes wind turbines too), I’m concerned that there is little understanding of how we actually generate electricity and what the options really are to generate what we need. (And how much do we really need, for that matter?)

    If you would like an entertaining short course in power generation and nuclear energy in particular (the good AND the bad), see my novel “Rad Decision”. The book is available online at no cost to readers at , and is also in paperback at online retailers. (I get no royalties.)

    The purpose of Rad Decision is not to convince anyone that nuclear is the great energy solution (none exists, in my opinion) but instead to inform people of the real situation on the ground so that they can make more informed decisions. Stewart Brand, the noted environmentalist and founder of “The Whole Earth Catalog” has said: “I’d like to see Rad Decision widely read.”

  • G. R. L. Cowan, boron combustion fan

    Opponents of the risking of these public billions should reflect that the principal threat to nuclear construction projects has always been government action. If government loses money when they red-tape a nuclear project to death, they won’t be so strongly inclined to do so.

    That leads to the question, why would they want mid-1970s-style nuclear project cancellations? Because such cancellations gain them billions in fossil fuel tax revenue.

    When forced to give these loan guarantees, government doesn’t become a nuclear booster, rather, it merely has its conflict of interest corrected. The oil and gas money it might win by putting a sufficient number of stumbling blocks in nuclear developers’ way, it would straight away have to pay to the developers’ creditors.

    Being thus out of temptation’s way, perhaps it won’t as eager to screw things up as it was in the 1970s.

  • John Bailo

    Nukes are the best way to reduce pollution.

    In fact — the only way.

    Willie Nelson and the rest of the Corn Lobby will oppose nukes because they want to line their pockets with bio-dollars.

  • Eric McErlain

    There’s been plenty of response against the original message over at YouTube.

  • Sherwood Martinelli

    What the pro-nuclear folks do not want you to know, is every time nuclear reactors cannot meet their SAFTY MARGINS, the NRC either eliminates them, lowers them, or exempts the licensee from them. Couple of DANGEROUS examples of this:

    1. Reactor Internal Safety Margins as relates to Thermal Shock. None of the PWR reactors can meet the safety standards during their 20 year periods of licensee renewal…the NRC has recently proposed a SIGNIFICANT RULE CHANGE that will greatly lower the SAFETY MARGINS under the quise they are too conservative.

    2. Fire Safety Standards…now the industry wants us to believe their staff can run around the entire plant during a fire, and safely SHUT IT DOWN in less than TWENTY FOUR MINUTES.

    Nuclear is not safe, not green…look for instance at the tritium and strontium 90 leaking out of Entergy’s Indian Point.

  • igmuska

    Nuclear energy is killing my relatives; it has killed my family. On my reservation the government has only excuses bent on more lies, and statistics skewed to make our illnesses as being unreal. On my reservation, the Standing Rock Sioux Indian Reservation, the nuclear contamination flowed through the Grand River; we drank it daily, swam in it during the summers, washed our clothes in it: are our unnecessary deaths revenge for defeating honorably General Custer on the battlefield?

    In South Dakota the uranium is found in the lignite beds, found in the sandstone; the quantity was enough for them to build the decommissioned Edgemont uranium mill and the decommissioned Pathfinder nuclear reactor in Sioux Falls. The uranium miners, most notably Kerr-McGee (now named Anadarko) came and left; all its miners are dead, its Riley Pass uranium mine still is an ugly, un-reclaimed toxic mess on the Custer National Forest.

    It was not enough for them to remember that nuclear energy poisons our environment, poisons our people. Now as the nuclear renaissance plows ahead through the morass of laws and regulations, the nuclear industry knows that ignorance, in this essence, is its power, its strength and that we, as Native Americans, are often sacrificed to enrich and empower this society with vanity and fantasies of omnipotence.

    In our culture, uranium is “IYA,” pronounced “Ah-eee-Ah;” it is an ancient monster, eating people from the inside out as in cancer and the other sicknesses. Now as it awakens again, it comes to eat all in its way, and, in the end, it will eat us all!



  • G. R. L. Cowan, boron combustion fan

    I have seen those statistics, igmuska, and I believe it is you who are not telling the truth.

    Why would government not welcome the news of serious harm due to long-ago uranium mining practices? They tax fossil fuels! Every dollar’s worth of uranium, even at its most expensive ever, meant at least several dollars of lost oil and gas revenue for them. Paying compensation would amount to very effective propaganda that would bring them back much more in future petrodollars than it would cost.

  • ann harris

    I worked in the nuke power industry for over 15 years. I watched management ignore and sign outright lies to the nuclear regulatory commission. when a question was raised, I was told that I should not worry, “we have a person at the NRC that will take care of it.” And he did!!
    Now for those that think that they can trust their gov’t take a good look at who is supporting this issue of loans. Insurers for the treasury department will not insure our US treasury! That means that when AREVA, STUDVIK, JAPANESE WESTINGHOUSE, and others outside this country will carry their money back home and the US Tax Payer will take the hit just like we have taken the hit on the IRAQ war. This is just another kind of war. It is a nuke war. If you could see the waste, duplication, lies, over billing, out and out fraud that goes on inside the nuke industry you would not be supporting such a policy from the very people that gave us the IRAQ WAR. How many wars should the US Tax Payers be asked to pay for? The idea that no one has died in the nuke industry is just another lie, too cheap to meter, another lie, mining is OK, another lie, enrichment, another lie, fabrication uses no carbon, another lie, generation no fossil fuel, another lie, and then there is the waste. Remeber Ed Teller and his big lie, “safety is not an issue, no health problems, and waste will not be a problem within 3 to 5 years.” That was in the 1950s when he told Eisnhower to open it up to commercial production. And now may Teller rot in Hell for his lies and greed. Go look of Wm. Broads’ book, Teller’s War. Read it and weep for out future. No Nukes ever again.

  • RemyC

    Ann Harris… wow… how do I find you, to recruit you, we need you on the Indian Point front! Call me! We next expert witnesses to back up legal contentions. We can stop them on the Hudson.