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Left’s War on Nuclear Power Proves Disastrous for New York

Posted on Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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by Andrew Shirley
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According to a new report, the forced closure of New York’s Indian Point nuclear power plant in 2021 led to an 83 percent spike in electricity costs for residents – while also making the state even more reliant on fossil fuels and leading to an increase in greenhouse gas emissions. The saga has proved to be yet another stark warning about the consequences of the left’s war on nuclear power and the failure of so-called “green” policies.

The 50-year-old Indian Point plant, located about 35 miles north of Manhattan on the Hudson River, was consistently rated “safe” by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and provided ample electricity for America’s largest city. Despite this, environmental activists – aided by now-former Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo – spent decades trying to shutter the facility.

In 2017, the pressure campaign waged by Cuomo and his liberal allies finally succeeded, and Entergy, the plant’s owner, agreed to cease all operations by 2021. “I have personally been trying to close it down for 15 years,” Cuomo bragged at the time. “After extensive litigation and negotiation, Entergy has agreed to end all operations at the facility.”

But the actual results of the closure have been far from the green utopia Cuomo promised.

A study out earlier this month from The Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity found that the closure “significantly increase[ed] the state’s reliance on natural gas and affect[ed] electricity costs and reliability.” Specifically, the median electricity price in the state spiked from $24.70 per MWh to $45.39 per MWh or 83.77 percent. Moreover, “if Indian Point had remained operational, New York would have produced 8.03 fewer metric megatons of CO2 in 2022.”

The report also notes that, despite liberal insistence that the plant be closed to meet “green energy” goals, New York is now more reliant on natural gas than ever. In 2017, natural gas accounted for 39 percent of the state’s electricity generation. Now, it accounts for over 50 percent.

In fact, according to an analysis from JP Morgan, New York’s power grid now uses more fossil fuels than Texas.

“From a climate change point of view, it’s been a real step backwards and made it harder for New York City to decarbonize its electricity supply than it could’ve been,” Ben Furnas, a climate and energy policy expert at Cornell University, told The Guardian. “This has been a cautionary tale that has left New York in a really challenging spot.”

Nonetheless, current Governor Kathy Hochul is plowing ahead with the implementation of a radical climate law which mandates that New York get 70 percent of its energy from non-carbon fuels by 2030, and 100 percent by 2040.

As The New York Post Editorial Board has pointed out, the Indian Point closure pushed the state further away from that goal. But Hochul, denying observable reality, has continued to insist that New York will be able to meet its increasing energy demand solely through wind, solar, and hydroelectric power in just 16 years’ time.

The Indian Point debacle has raised serious questions about the approach and even the intent of progressive environmental activists who believe all energy should be supplied by wind and solar. They claim nuclear power is “too expensive, too dangerous and dirty, and takes too long to deploy.” Yet, as the case of Indian Point proves, many of the costs incurred by nuclear power plants are artificially contrived by activist legislatures specifically seeking to drive them out of the market.

Additionally, the Democrat-dominated government of New York has mobilized billions of dollars to create a “net-zero” state and has utterly, and predictably, failed. Despite progressives extolling the virtues of solar, New York’s natural geography and general climate make it one of the worst states for solar power usage. Even a state like California, which has one of the best solar energy climates, still relies on natural gas during off-peak hours. Reliability and consistency in output are among the most significant factors in keeping energy prices low.

Yet, the “renewable or nothing” approach is not the only vision for America’s energy future. In an interview with AMAC Newsline, American Conservation Coalition (ACC) CEO Danielle Butcher Franz stated, “We need an all-of-the-above energy approach that capitalizes on the benefits of each energy source and balances their trade-offs.”

ACC is a nonprofit founded in 2017 by a group of young conservatives to mobilize “young people around environmental action through common-sense, pro-innovation, and limited-government principles.” Their strategy for emissions reduction calls for a hybrid energy mix that optimizes the peak efficiency of each form of energy.

Franz said of the Indian Point failure, “After Indian Point closed, New York’s emissions spiked because the alternative to baseload nuclear energy isn’t wind and solar — it’s coal and natural gas.”

As Franz pointed out, Indian Point is a stark example of how the strategies employed by left-wing environmental activists undermine their own stated goals. By adhering to ideology over science and basic reality, leftist leaders like Cuomo and Hochul have forced their constituents to pay more to keep the lights on while making their state even more reliant on the fossil fuels they claim to abhor.

For as long as the left insists on a “wind and solar or bust” approach to energy and continues its war on nuclear, Americans will find themselves increasingly reliant on traditional energy sources – and at risk of being left in the dark.

Andrew Shirley is a veteran speechwriter and AMAC Newsline columnist. His commentary can be found on X at @AA_Shirley.

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Neil Gipson
Neil Gipson
24 days ago

Strange isn’t it, Nuclear power is much cleaner, a thousand time more efficient and much much less toxic than wind or solar power generation, but Satan’s cult insists on pushing that garbage

Max
Max
24 days ago

The Left continues its march to destroy the nation while putting the “cart” before the “horse”. Closing necessary energy plants before new or alternative energy plants are in place and operating. The goal is still to destroy the middle class and make the elite the only ones to survive.

Phillip Nagle
Phillip Nagle
24 days ago

While the Left drives up energy prices in the US, increasing the cost of goods manufactured in the US, they do nothing about importing good from China, manufactured with cheap electricity produced from “dirty” coal burning plants. It’s almost as if they’re working to undermine the US and benefit China. Maybe they are.

Avoter
Avoter
24 days ago

Who, besides the liberals themselves, ever thought the liberals were intelligent?

USMC7
USMC7
24 days ago

Just another example of the stupidity of liberals, in all honesty, they don’t know what the hell they want except to challenge what the conservatives want.They think and act like communist. If they want to live like that I’m sure Russia will welcome them.

TOBS
TOBS
24 days ago

WITH BRANDON BEING ON THE TAKE WITH THE CHI-COMS WHAT DO YOU EXPECT!
KEEP VOTING DEMORAT MAKE AMERICA A S…T HOLE

Jim
Jim
24 days ago

Perhaps when New Yorkers have to pay 50 cents or more per KWH they will begin to wake up to just how bad the environmental activists are damaging America. Nuclear power is the best way forward for America because it’s very safe and very cheap.

Jim
Jim
24 days ago

Indian Point is only a continuation of the Cuomo insanity. Anyone interested should research as to why Mario Cuomo was instrumental in preventing Shoreham Nuclear Power Station for generating 80% of the power needed by LILCO at the time.

Jerry
Jerry
24 days ago

Trans. Story hour, men, in women’s sports, transitioning the sex of children at the age of 15. Don’t be misled. These are all smoke screens to get your attention off of how they are really trying to convert our country from a God fearing republic to a fascist police state. And you know what the sad thing is about it? They are succeeding. Sad but true.

Oldclimber
Oldclimber
24 days ago

The “be that as it may” attitude towards a total reliance on solar and wind won’t leave those social criminals in the dark. Just us.

Ted
Ted
24 days ago

Untill the people of New York rid themselves of democrats and use a common sense approach this is their future. You only have to look at Europe and see how closing nuclear power plants down has cost them in more ways than they thought.

John
John
24 days ago

The Socialist Democrats continue to show how stupid they are! They do everything to destroy America and the American people! The Republicans don’t speak out and the Democrats continue to destroy us!

Irv C
Irv C
24 days ago

Its simple, liberals are plain old stupid and the rest that have some savvy are ignorant. Look at Americ under obiden. A huge DISASTER !

Melinda
Melinda
24 days ago

Renewable or nothing? I guess we’ll have to live with nothing, or a lot less at least. Back to the stone age!

Peter Dawson
Peter Dawson
24 days ago

New Yorkers are reaping the rewards of listening to people like Al Gore, Jane Fonda and Ocasio Cortez. They earned what they deserved by electing a left wing idion like Cathy Hochul as governor.

Thinking
Thinking
24 days ago

Nuclear energy is hated by the climate changing believers. Europe the same. And now they have no way to provide all the electricity they need for their e cars and appliances. Typical ultra left planning. Ole Joe hasn’t had an original thought since the first day he was sworn in as a senator at his wife’s deathbed. The creep. They never plan anything beyond the initial idea. Let’s close nuclear power plant. And then what. Only their mind doesn’t go this far. Again he is tapping the National reserves to keep the gasoline prices low till election. He mandates no longer drilling for oil and stop fossil fuel use. Only the cost for the alternate fuel rises so much nobody can afford to heat or cool their homes. Then he mandates everyone buy an e car only no loading stations, anywhere. That is why they want to make 15 minute cities. Nobody can leave their city and go any further than 15 minutes from that city. Control and more control till total control. More and more truth is coming out about Fauci and how he handled the pandemic. What COVID really did to people and what the vaccine has done to so many people. Lead particles have been found in the vaccine. More people are dying from the vaccine than what is considered normal. Of course total radio silence on that from ole Joe. The nuclear plant was running well and safe and now we have higher cost, more pollution and less people alive. So much for saving the planet. More wind power. Did anyone see how these wind turbines buckled when a tornado struck them. And any solar panels on the homes of these towns that have been struck by a tornado are gone for good. But by all means let’s go solar and wind power. And drain our national oil reserve.

Jackie
Jackie
24 days ago

The left drives up the cost of everything and isn’t concerned about who or how they are affected! They want to be the world’s saviors but at our expense!! When will they ever try to care about Americans??

Theresa Coughlin
Theresa Coughlin
24 days ago

full disclosure (and it pains me to say this): I live in NY. The democrats will not be satisfied unless and until we end up living in a third-world Marxist hellhole. How many blackouts and brownouts will it take before the democrats wake up and realize that an economy being run on so-called renewable energy sources (really unreliable sources) will not work. Unless they don’t care and this is what they want.

Rex
Rex
24 days ago

Here In Georgia, we have 2 new nuclear power plants. Georgia power has increased my monthly bill by about 12 dollars to pay for them. It looks like I’m being charged less than those wrongheaded New Yorkers are to have a semi-antique nuclear plant closed. Such is the price of sophistry over the southern practicalities of living within ones’ means..

Bernard
Bernard
23 days ago

Having worked as consultant to the owners of the Brayton Point Power Station in Somerset MA for 5 years [2018-2023], I read at least 4 studies by ISO New England, an organization which controls the distribution of power from all sources [there are 16 ISO’s in the US] in the six New England states. In each of the studies, the conclusion was the same: solar and wind cannot replace the grid, ever. It is too unstable. New York and the New England states have consistently ignored the offer from Quebec Hydro in Canada to hook up to their grid using the power generated by a series of hydro dams located at the south end of Hudson’s Bay in Northern Quebec. Instead, the fools that MA, RI and ME have for governors have opted to locate wind turbines off the coasts of RI, Block island and Martha’s Vineyard. Billions are being spent on these projects. Follow the money. New Bedford’s mayor is crowing about his city becoming a major industrial port again. what he has not said is that New Bedford is back in the business of killing whales. Hydrophone recordings of the pile drivers installing the base mounts for the wind turbines indicate that the massive noise levels are off the charts. These sounds travel at 6 times the speed of sound on land[6×765 mph]. In addition, if these sound waves get caught in what are called SOFAR channels, they can travel, at the same decibel level, for thousands of miles in the oceans. And the plan is to locate 600 of these machines off Martha’s Vineyard, turning the ocean into an industrial junkyard in 5 years. How do I know these facts, apart from reading scientific accounts and listening to the recordings? I am a former Navy Aviator, pilot of an antisubmarine aircraft, the P3 Orion. In our business, we had to know in detail about the properties of sound transmission in sea water. The havoc that these sound and pressure waves are causing to marine mammals and other sea life are not being reported to the public.
The other fact which is not publicized: The Norwegian partners of the Vineyard Wind group have taken on the Chinese as partners in this venture. How outrageous is that!!!??? The Commonwealth of MA provides tax breaks an subsidies to these European thieves and they have the gall to team up with the Chinese. How do I know this? One of my clients was asked by the Norwegians to lease bulkhead space at another port city. They told him about the new partnership arrangements is in December 2023. He kicked them out of his office.
Whatever the government is telling you about solar and wind is a lie.

Nicholas Geary
Nicholas Geary
23 days ago

Climatologist James Hansen and others have been warning for over 20 years that the shading/cooling effect from fossil fuel combustion particulates has been masking roughly half of the warming potential of our elevated levels of CO2. So if all we do is halt all fossil fuel emissions, the effect of that will be a very large increase in the pace of warming. Self-styled climate activists lionize Hansen for his warning about the CO2 greenhouse gas effect, but when he says wind and solar alone can’t fight warming, or that we will need a large amount of CO2 drawdown and sequestration (an area where Texas will soon become a world leader), and that the best source of energy for that would ultimately be a large deployment of new nuclear, the activists dismiss him out of hand, or even accuse him of “denialism” (Oreskes).
I’m pleased to see there is now a growing conservation and ecology-minded faction within conservatism, but even when warming denial was at its peak, at least that didn’t stop southern and mid-west states from taking the lead in wind and solar deployment. And now, in states like Tennessee, New Mexico, Idaho, and Texas, new kinds of nuclear reactors are being developed–kinds which could be built faster and cheaper. Kinds which cannot melt down, and which could become broadly popular, and could position the U.S. as a dominant exporter in the future global nuclear market. So now watch for the new pivot, as professional anti-nukes and their gullible followers come around to tolerating the continued operation of old-tech nuclear, while refocusing their energies on preventing or interminably delaying the development of better nuclear. (The UCS has already made this pivot.) Cheap, abundant, and worst of all, popular nuclear would be an unmitigated disaster for them.

M. Allen
M. Allen
24 days ago

AND, now take a look at what NYC has planned to bolster their failing power options; stringing a transmission line from Canada to NYC!!! Allegedly to go underground, but it also sounds like they want to traverse Lake Champlain with it as well. Oh, did I mention it won’t (supposedly) be completed till 2026? Meanwhile how does the Big Apple make up their generation shortfall” You got it, CONTINUE polluting with coal and natural gas power.
Champlain Hudson Power Express to begin construction on transmission line
mynbc5.com/article/champlain-hudson-power-express-to-begin-construction-on-transmission-line/60862725
Then also consider that the impact to the environment of the lake and land they will be constructing this transmission line on, in, and through. Perfect example of demon-crat lunacy!!!

Robert Zuccaro
Robert Zuccaro
24 days ago

Democrat voters are like abused spouses who can’t leave the abuser because they “love” them and just keep being abused. Abuse becomes a way of life!

uncleferd
uncleferd
24 days ago

NY “Democrats” are “faux political”… they really don’t know what they pretend to, so they “posture” their way through elections and power plant closings, while never realizing how much money they always cost themselves…. you know, just like “President” Biden does while in political office…..

Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
23 days ago

No Nuclear= No EVs for 2035 date

Iron Mike
Iron Mike
24 days ago

It’s a shame that these woke liberal green grass eating morons just can’t figure it out. There may be a better energy source. Until it’s researched and proves to be a better replacement, it’s not a good idea to shut down the energy sources we need to conduct the testing. From the teenage college morons to the adult tree huggers, it just surprises me that they haven’t figured this out.

Adonis
Adonis
24 days ago

This s what happens when hard left radical lawyers without any business nor economic experience run the State. Hochul is no better.

Barrett T Smith
Barrett T Smith
23 days ago

Biden’s war on energy continues.

THE_MAD_BOMBER
THE_MAD_BOMBER
23 days ago

Just another step in the left’s effort, backed up by the marxist media, to destroy the USA. BTW, I used to live in the area served by Indian Point. I’m glad I’m not there now.

Barbara Charis
Barbara Charis
23 days ago

Nuclear has a downside! As do all the “Green” ideas that mankind has come up with at this time. Scientist should be looking for other energy sources that would not have downsides! There are people who are working on projects, which would be safer in order to create energy. Our problem as always been, the industries that are making money don’t want “upstarts’ to come along and take away their business. Tesla was an ‘upstart’ who had some very interesting ideas, which some industries did not like…and his ideas were squashed! The pursuit of money has also been the pursuit of ignorance!!! It has held back real progress.

Mark stuhlman
Mark stuhlman
23 days ago

Fools and there money are soon parted as in every single person in N.Y. who voted for a Democrat.

Hopinow
Hopinow
21 days ago

no, they are tryimg to gut cities. new york has signed on to 15 minute cities. blackrock will be able to scoop real estate for pennies on the dollar.

SAW
SAW
23 days ago

Reap what you sow and stop complaining about it…

Kyle Buy you some guns,and learn how to shoot
Kyle Buy you some guns,and learn how to shoot
24 days ago

POLotics. Kyle L.

WILLIAM KLOCEK
WILLIAM KLOCEK
24 days ago

See the very first post on justplainbill.wordpress.com.

John Shipway
John Shipway
24 days ago

All I can say about the plight of New York is………….awesome and to hell with that boil on the backside of planet Earth

Ray Doyle LFP, WA
Ray Doyle LFP, WA
24 days ago

Nuclear power is unsafe and dirty. the best way to create electricity is hydro power and every single environmentalist who disagrees shoudl be immediately thrown into a rendering tank and left to swim until they rot down into fertilizer.

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