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Biden broadcasts $6bn bailout for nuclear energy vegetation to ramp up carbon-free energy

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President Joe Biden has introduced a $6 billion bail-out for struggling nuclear energy vegetation, citing its position in transitioning the US away from dependency on fossil fuels.

The US Division of Vitality advised the Associated Press on Tuesday {that a} civil nuclear credit score program has opened with the intention of bailing out financially “distressed house owners or operators of nuclear energy reactors”.

Homeowners or operators of nuclear energy reactors which can be anticipated to close down for financial causes can apply for funding to keep away from closing prematurely. The primary spherical of awards will prioritize reactors which have already introduced plans to shut.

The second spherical will likely be aimed toward extra economically at-risk services. This system is funded by President Biden’s $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure plan, which turned regulation in November.

The Impartial has contacted the Division of Vitality for remark.

“We’re utilizing each device out there to get this nation powered by clear vitality by 2035, and that features prioritizing our current nuclear fleet to permit for continued emissions-free electrical energy technology and financial stability for the communities main this vital work,” Vitality Secretary Jennifer Granholm advised AP in an announcement.

Most nuclear vegetation within the US have been constructed between 1970 and 1990 and have rising prices. The one nuclear plant below building in the USA is in Georgia the place the worth has ballooned and delays have been repeated.

Nuclear power is a highly contentious issue and source of much public wariness. However a survey earlier this year found that about two-thirds of US states include the energy source, in one way or another, in plans to decarbonize their electricity grids by 2035.

Critics point to the risks of radioactive waste, that can remain a threat for millennia, and the past disasters of Japan’s Fukushima, Chernobyl in Ukraine and in the US, Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania.

Nuclear power advocates, including Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates, say that the technology has come a long way and that smaller, cheaper reactors are now possible.

”If we’re serious about solving climate change, and quite frankly we have to be, the first thing we should do is keep safe reactors operating,” Mr Gates said in an interview last year.

But “even then, just maintaining that status quo is not enough. We need more nuclear power to zero out emissions in America and to prevent a climate disaster,” he told CNBC.

Mr Gates’ start-up firm, TerraPower, plans to construct a brand new nuclear reactor in Kemmerer, Wyoming, a city which as soon as centered across the coal business.

AP contributed to this text

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