Congressman Jason Altmire offers thoughts and advice for Clean Energy

Congressman Jason Altmire addressed the Nuclear Infrastructure Council today in Washington.

Well, that’s interesting!  The very topic I wrote about yesterday does seem to be bubbling to the surface …

I attended a luncheon of the Nuclear Infrastructure Council today in Washington, D.C. and at our table, the infamous Oil and Natural Gas TV commercials were brought up by Scott Thomasson, Director of Economic and Domestic Policy for the Progressive Policy Institute.  (I promise I did not launch the subject!)  It was agreed at the table that the disparity between the amount and fervor of Oil & Gas promotions and that of other energies is significant.

Then, our guest speaker Congressman Jason Altmire coached the nuclear industry on how it needs to up its game when pitching the benefits of nuclear power for the U.S. (For the record, I believe the Congressman is in favor of other clean energy solutions too; but he was addressing a room full of nuclear advocates.)

It’s refreshing to hear from this fresh-faced Congressman. Not, that he’s new mind you. This is his third term representing the 4th Congressional District of Pennsylvania.  I like him.  He seems to be a pretty independent thinker.  (His official label is Conservative Democrat.) A recent non-partisan study of congressional votes identified him as having a reliably centrist voting record. And, in the last three Congressional sessions he’s never missed a vote. And, and, and — he played football for Florida State.  What a guy!

Deb Deal-Blackwell

Left: Lisa Epifani, Van Ness Feldman attorneys and Samuel Lederer, Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan, were also part of the packed room.

Left: Michael Richard, Westinghouse and David Blee, Nuclear Infrastructure Council at the luncheon today.

Clean Energy Technologies Need to Step up their Self-Promotion

 I just saw another TV ad for the oil and gas industry. Boy, those folks must be making some heavy-duty profits in order to afford the flood of ads that it is purchasing.  (Who is ultimately paying for those ads?  You and me.)

Enough already!  I believe we need to employ all kinds of energy technology in order to meet the challenges of the future.  The percentage of each in the mix will be the question, and probably continually adjusted in the future. But the clean energy technologies need to step up their own promotion if they are going to ever come close to really competing with the fossil fuel segment.

Take for example the nuclear industry.                                                                                              

Did it DAWN on YOU who is really paying for all the oil & gas industry advertising?

The problem I saw when I became interested in nuclear several years ago, is that the nuclear industry is “timid” in comparison to the other energy industries when it comes to working for its interests. In the United States there is no strong champion with the same passion for nuclear that there is for natural gas, coal, oil.  Up until 2009 U.S. Senator Pete Domenici was the voice on the Hill for nuclear.  (He even wrote a book about nuclear: “A Brighter Tomorrow: Fulfilling the Promise of Nuclear Energy,” and edited another.) A couple of others were somewhat supportive but Domenici was the Man.  Now he is gone and I do not see a likely successor with equal fervor.

The association with the highest profile for being pro-nuclear – the Nuclear Energy Institute (bless their hearts) – still cannot go all out with the same kind of vigor and tactics used by, for example, the gas people.  Why?

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