by Jeff Woods
on Tue, Jul 14, 2009 at 5:48 AM
Lamar Alexander is offering the Republican alternative to the Democrats' cap-and-trade legislation. He wants America to build 100 new nuclear plants in 20 years. At the same time, Alexander says he's not open to compromise on the climate change bill.
"We should want an America in which we create hundreds of thousands of 'green jobs,' but not at the expense of destroying tens of millions of red, white and blue jobs," the senator says.
Setting aside the obvious problem (what would we do with all that nuclear waste?) Alexander's plan also fails to make economic sense, as energy industry analyst David Fiderer points out. Alexander claims it will lower utility bills and shouldn't add to the federal budget since ratepayers will pay for building the plants. But if ratepayers are picking up the tab, then won't their utility bills go up? Click here to learn more about what Fiderer rightly calls Alexander's flimflam plan:
Anything that addresses the issue of climate change involves a tradeoff, and nuclear power may very well be one part of the long-term solution. But this Republican scheme offers nothing to reduce greenhouse emissions in the short run. Alexander's claim that it imposes less of a financial burden on utility ratepayers than the current House Bill is close to fraudulent.