Resolution Opposing Nuclear Power and Supporting Sustainable and Renewable Energy Sources

Date adopted May 12, 2010

 

Whereas conservation of natural resources, reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and cost-effectiveness should be prime considerations in restructuring our energy-producing infrastructure, and

Whereas using nuclear power to generate electricity is being promulgated as a safe, cost-effective, and sustainable solution to meet our nation’s long-term energy needs and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and

Whereas after almost 50 years of commercial nuclear electricity production, unlike any other industry, the nuclear power industry is still unable to buy private insurance or obtain private financing without government-guaranteed insurance limits and exemptions and without multi-billion dollar government loan guarantees, and

Whereas the full, long-term costs of nuclear power are open-ended, impossible to fully quantify and can only be borne by massive and uncontrollable taxpayer-funded subsidies. These costs include:
Power plant construction
Power plant decommissioning
Remediation of uranium mining sites
Remediation of fuel processing facilities
Extremely long-term storage and monitoring of spent fuel and low-level wastes, and

Whereas there is the added potential of serious accidents or terrorist attacks at nuclear power facilities, and

Whereas development of nuclear power provides a pathway for additional countries to develop nuclear weapons, and

Whereas even though nuclear power production does not directly produce greenhouse gases, the entire nuclear power production process, including construction and decommissioning of power plants and production and disposal fuel produces substantial greenhouse emissions, and

Whereas U235, the nuclear isotope used in commercial power plants, is a non-renewable resource and is subject to depletion in the foreseeable future, and

Whereas other more abundant potential nuclear fuel sources such as U238 and thorium have never been successfully commercialized, and

Whereas great opportunities exist to substantially and cost-effectively increase energy efficiency and reduce energy consumption by widespread implementation of existing commercial and near-commercial technologies, and

Whereas great potential exists for large-scale implementation of renewable and sustainable energy sources including solar, wind and waves, and

Whereas energy conservation and efficiency and renewable energy will create many more long-lasting, high-quality jobs than would nuclear energy

Now therefore be it resolved that the Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee hereby urges our elected officials at all levels of government to focus their efforts on energy efficiency and conservation while promoting further research on the most benign and least costly renewable sources of energy with nuclear power considered both the most costly and unreasonably dangerous.