American Energy and Economic Security is in Reach

By Richard McPherson

This week we entered a new era - a chance to give many of the 94 million unemployed Americans age 16 and older the opportunity to go to work in creating a strong economy to be able to demonstrate the national defense and national security to be a deterrent.  In my opinion, the single largest gains to be made - start with energy. 

America needs to focus like a laser on a path to head towards energy and economic security i.e. jobs focusing on the highest and best economical use of energy resources and technology to create the strong economy required for our national security.  Part of it must be get the burden off the back of the NRC for knowledge over to the DOE, where it belongs.  Then educate the NRC about nuclear technology.  Thereby, allowing the NRC and nuclear industry to focus with better technology like Mitopia® (www.mitosystems.com) on creating real time reviews of designs in progress.  Once a new commercial nuclear design is completed it should take less than a year for NRC approval to start manufacturing, site preparation and construction.

Idaho should lead the way with the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), the Center for Advanced Energy Studies (CAES), the University of Idaho as the center for commercial nuclear power development along with two commercial nuclear sites in the state to lead America.  Pave the way for the new administration and Congress to move out rapidly to make America strong again.  The US Department of Energy and Congress can focus on INL & CASE to lead the nation (www.caesenergy.org).   

It's long past time to be holding endless meetings and doing more studies.  We know what needs to be done.  Donald Trump is the President-elect and has said it’s time to go to work and have an economically secure America, which means energy secure.  This opportunity is ours to lose.  Great Americans are ready to go to work. 

Four professional organizations can organize their members using the Internet in a national volunteer program for energy security, all cooperating and coordinating to create a plan for secure electricity for each state.

 

  • ANS (American Nuclear Society: Founded in 1954 – 11,000 members)
  • ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers: Founded in 1852 - 150,000 members)
  • ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers: Founded in 1880 - 130,000 members)
  • IEEE (Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineers: Founded in 1884 - 420,000 members)

America’s oil & gas industry has led the way over the past decade.  They should continue, with commercial nuclear power adding the economic and energy security advantage recognized by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953, in announcing America’s “Atoms for Peace” program.

America already has the PRISIM reactor from GE/Hitachi (www.gehitachiprisim.com) and soon should have Molten Salt Reactors (MSRs) to utilize partially spent fuel stored at our fleet of Light Water Reactors (LWRs) around the country.  MSRs and PRISIM can significantly reduce the volume of partially spent commercial nuclear fuel that was intended to be stored at Yucca Mountain beginning in 1998.  Now Yucca Mountain can be completed to only take actual waste and not be burdened with handing valuable partially spent commercial nuclear fuel.  We also will soon have carbon free 50 MW Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) from NuScale Power (www.nuscalepower.com), that can be built as cyber secure and Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) hardened electricity power sources for our strategic needs.     

All we need to do as a national priority is continue with fracking, while pursuing commercial nuclear power, and developing clean coal technology American taxpayers and the private sector has already paid for like the ENCOAL mild gasification Liquids from Coal (LFC) process – proved out at the Buckskin Mine north of Gillette, Wyoming in the Powder River Basin (PRB), under Round Three of the DOE’s Clean Coal Technology Demonstration Program (www.osti.gov/scitech/biblio/792805-UYCrjB/native/).  Like the commercial nuclear industry, the coal industry needs to come together as one voice in all respects.
 
Richard McPherson has been in energy for over 53-years.  Starting in the US Navy Nuclear Power Program, then later, becoming the United States Representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for four years in response to the Chernobyl accident, working on “Nuclear Fuel Cycle, the Environment and Public Opinion” as one subject.  In 2004, Mr. McPherson was invited to speak to the United Nations (UN) organizing Committee on the proposed 2005-2015 “Decade of Water”.  He talked about the importance of “Agriculture, Energy & Water” was one subject.