Former Michigan Governors Call for More Nuclear Power

By April 21, 2009General

In today’s Detroit Free Press, a column by John Engler, James Blanchard and William Milliken, former governors of Michigan, “Switch to nuclear power“:

On this coming 39th anniversary of Earth Day on Wednesday, Michigan is facing one of the greatest energy challenges in its history, with serious implications for the state’s environment and its economy. Our energy demand is surging, and we need every available energy source to meet it. At the same time, we need to prioritize our energy investments in favor of those that don’t pollute our air and don’t rely on hostile or unstable foreign sources.

As former governors, we support expanding Michigan’s nuclear energy capacity. Carbon-free nuclear energy has long been a workhorse for the state’s energy needs, powering one out of every four homes and businesses. Because nuclear energy produces virtually no air pollutants, it accounts for more than 87% of all carbon-free electricity generated in the state each year.

Nuclear energy can help power Michigan’s economic turnaround. The state’s auto manufacturers are hard at work electrifying the domestic vehicle fleet, and battery makers are migrating here to support this important transition. But Michigan needs to take the next step to produce the clean electricity essential for plug-in hybrid cars.

Engler is president of the National Association of Manufacturers.

The Nuclear Energy Institute has a fact sheet on nuclear power in Michigan. Nuclear power is the second-largest source of electrical generation in the state: Coal, 59.1 percent percent; nuclear 26.2 percent; gas 11.7 percent.

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