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Archive for May 7th, 2010

Week in Review

It’s a bitter sweet day here at Public Citizen. We’ve had another successful week despite the gulf catastrophe. But, we’re all a little sad because Andrew Sauls just finished the last day of his internship. Melissa “Mami” Sanchez is both proud of her fledgling for flying off and also dismayed to see the intern nest grow a little emptier. But that means she’s on the lookout for new eager interns if you’re interested in energy advocacy work shoot her an email at [email protected]

Andrew extends his sincere thanks to all of our staff for the knowledge, training, and expertise everyone has imparted. He left today’s staff meeting to warm cheers and handshakes. Andy’s off to Houston for the weekend to celebrate Mothers’ Day.

Now, the week in review…

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U.S. Nuclear Reactor Projects In Line for Loan Guarantees Pose Major Risks to U.S. Taxpayers.

The only taxpayer-backed loan guarantee bailout to be offered for new nuclear reactors – $8.3 billion for two reactors at Plant Vogtle in Georgia was dealt a setback in a decision by a Georgia judge that state officials illegally certified the project, according to the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) and Public Citizen. 

Despite the push in Congress for more controversial loan guarantees for new nuclear reactors, the other two leading contenders for such bailouts – the South Texas Project at Bay City on the Gulf Coast (114 miles from San Antonio and 90 miles from Houston) and Calvert Cliffs in Maryland – are more unsettled than ever and now pose an even greater risk to U.S. taxpayers.  Given this, the  Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Sustainable Energy and Economic (SEED) Coalition and Public Citizen believe the Department of Energy (DOE) should overhaul its evaluation process before offering any new loan guarantees to nuclear projects .

DOE has stated that the $10 billion remaining in loan guarantee authority is only sufficient for one of the two projects and has requested another $9 billion in the appropriations supplemental to cover the second project.  In its FY2011 budget request, the Obama Administration has already requested $36 billion in loan guarantee authority, a tripling of the nuclear loan guarantee program. (more…)

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