With the recent announcements by President Obama that he will be pushing the construction of nuclear power plants and drilling for oil in Alaska, on the Eastern Coast and the Western Coast of the US, it is abundantly clear that Green Technology is being ignored as an alternative to oil and nuclear power.
1. The construction of Nuclear Power Plants has long term consequences such as the raising of the temperature of the surrounding regions because the amount of cold water to keep the reactor core cool is enormous. France, which has the largest concentration of nuclear power plants, has had to move some of its vineyards for their wine industry to Great Britain because the warmer climate caused by the heat produced by the nuclear power plants has warmed the surrounding atmosphere to such an extent that the grape vines cannot grow properly. Trying to build nuclear plants in the Western United States is a losing proposition because the entire region is too arid to support its population, provide water for irrigation for agriculture and for the millions of acres of lawns, and to provide water for its cities.
2. The problem of what to do with the spent nuclear waste is not only a political problem but a long term health problem. In Oregon we still have a problem with two environmental hazards left over from World War II. These are the Hanford Nuclear Facility located near Kennewick and Pasco, in the State of Washington. which has allowed the nuclear waste to leak into the Columbia River. Across the river in Oregon near the town of Boardman, we still have enough nerve gas to kill the entire population of the Northwestern States. The containers for this nerve gas has been leaking for years. About fifteen or more years ago, the US Army was supposedly going to build an incinerator which would be used to burn the gas and render it harmless. I have no idea the present state of both of these hazards because the tendency is to keep everything quiet until a problem is discovered by the press. The eastern states would like to ship all of their waste to the western states where it would eventually leak into our aquifers and politute our water for thousands of years.
3. The western states have been the most active in their efforts to clean up the pollution brought on by mining, nuclear power plants, nerve gas and many other activities, but with corporations being granted the same rights as persons by the stupidity and crass behavior of five Supreme Court Justices, the efforts to clean up environmental disasters is enormous and costly. Individual states do not have the financial resources to fight the corporations who are responsible for much of the environmental disasters.
4. The western states have the greatest land mass of the United States yet we are treated as if we do not exist by the politicians in Washington. If and when we have a policy for Green Technology, we need to have a say in where the efforts to achieve energy independence are being focused, with the western states having a larger proportion of the political clout. We in the west should not become the dumping ground for nuclear waste or any other waste produced in the states east of the Mississippi River.
5. In view of the disaster with the British Petroleum, it would be interesting to have the Supreme Court comment on their ruling making this negligent corporation a person, since the so-called little people appear to be the neglected pawns of this giant corporation. Also, the Supreme Court should now be required to give monthly press conferences to explain their decisions to the general public. We also need a better mechanism to remove Supreme Court Justices from their posts than an Impeachment by the House of Representatives.