2 January 2017

Wasting time: Subsidies, operating reactors, and melting ice

Peter A. Bradford

Peter A. Bradford is an adjunct professor at Vermont Law School, where he has taught “Nuclear Power and Public Policy.” From 1977 to 1982, he served on the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and he...

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Instead of having political leaders and regulators make pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey-type guesstimates of how much nuclear power we’ll need, how long we’ll need it, and how much we should pay for it, we should adjust our power markets to procure the needed low-carbon electricity. Beyond that, we can regulate emission results where necessary. We should minimize mandating the continued use of existing power plants. Instead, our power markets can prioritize low-carbon technology, just as they have proven themselves capable of doing with reliability and demand response.