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Bernie Sanders has a track record of pushing for nuclear safety and renewable energy. Everyone who loves life and the environment had better support him, even if not in agreement with his other policies. Remember Comley for President, too. It’s too late for Comley to get the Republican nomination but since, like Sanders, he’s really an independent, he might still be a VP for either Sanders or Trump, or even Hillary for that matter. Hillary’s plan is to promote solar, all while still wastefully throwing away taxpayer money on so-called new nuclear tech, which appears non-existent. All of the so-called new nuclear seems to be old, often dangerously failed, nuclear tech from 50 to 70 years ago – in short, lethal pork-barrel. The only safe nuclear power is the sun. Farrington Daniels, former director of the Manhattan project, came to that conclusion a long, long time ago – Sixty-nine years ago, in fact: “Farrington was director of the Metallurgical Laboratory… but after the war he turned his attention to solar energy and the promise it offered of pollution-free energy… In 1947 Farrington returned to the University of Wisconsin and started a research program on solar energy.http://www.nasonline.org/publications/biographical-memoirs/memoir-pdfs/daniels-farrington.pdf
Solar Powering American DOE HUD
Sanders Introduces Solar Initiative
Tuesday, July 7, 2015
WASHINGTON, July 7 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today introduced legislation to make solar energy more accessible to low-income families.

“While the cost of solar panels has gone down in recent years, it is still out of reach for millions of low-income families that need it the most,” said Sanders. “Families across this country struggle to pay electricity bills and access to solar energy can help reduce these costs.”

The Low Income Solar Act of 2015 was introduced on the same day the White House proposed an initiative to make solar power more accessible to households and businesses. The Sanders bill would provide $200 million in loans and grants through the Department of Energy to offset the upfront costs for solar arrays on community facilities, public housing and low-income family homes. These projects would be required to prioritize loans for woman- and minority-owned small businesses and set aside funding for developing solar arrays in Appalachia, Indian tribal lands and Alaskan native communities.

While low-income families are the hardest hit by rising utility prices, they are also the hardest hit by the impacts of climate change. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the poor spend more than 60 percent of their income on basic necessities including electricity and food, compared to less than 45 percent for wealthy families. Helping low-income families use solar power addresses both of these issues.

“The scientific community tells us very clearly if we’re going to reverse climate change and the great dangers it poses for the planet we must move aggressively to transform our energy system away from fossil fuels to sustainable energy,” Sanders said. “We can achieve this goal, save families money and protect the planet for future generations.”

To read a summary of the bill, click here. http://www.sanders.senate.gov/download/lisasummary/?inline=file
To read the bill, click here.


This solar carport at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico, stands ready to impress some 400,000 visitors each year. The system delivers about 23 megawatt hours of clean electricity annually to the local utility grid (Public Service Company of New Mexico), making it the largest commercial PV system in New Mexico. Diversified Systems Manufacturing, a Native American owned and operated PV development company, was the contractor. The New Mexico Department of Energy, Minerals, and Natural Resources funded the project.” (US DOE via Flickr)
Navajo solar carport US DOE
US DOE via Flickr 907855541
Solar array Navajo home US DOE
Solar electric array on off-grid Navajo home in Arizona.
US DOE via Flickr 18778879439. Isn’t this Red Butte in the background? The area where they want to do more uranium mining, despite tribal opposition and failure to clean-up old uranium mines? https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2015/04/11/judge-permits-uranium-mining-near-grand-canyon-no-tribal-consult-no-environmental-update-appeal-expected/

The Appalachian Region

The Appalachian Region, as defined in ARC’s authorizing legislation, is a 205,000-square-mile region that follows the spine of the Appalachian Mountains from southern New York to northern Mississippi. It includes all of West Virginia and parts of 12 other states: Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia. Forty-two percent of the Region’s population is rural, compared with 20 percent of the national population.

The Appalachian Region’s economy, once highly dependent on mining, forestry, agriculture, chemical industries, and heavy industry, has become more diversified in recent times, and now includes manufacturing and professional service industries. Appalachia has come a long way in the past five decades: its poverty rate, 31 percent in 1960, was 17 percent over the 2009–2013 period. The number of high-poverty counties in the Region (those with poverty rates more than 1.5 times the U.S. average) declined from 295 in 1960 to 90 over the 2009–2013 period.

These gains have transformed the Region from one of widespread poverty to one of economic contrasts: some communities have successfully diversified their economies, while others still require basic infrastructure such as roads and water and sewer systems. The contrasts are not surprising in light of the Region’s size and diversity. The Region includes 420 counties in 13 states. It extends more than 1,000 miles, from southern New York to northeastern Mississippi, and is home to more than 25 million people“. http://www.arc.gov/appalachian_region/TheAppalachianRegion.asp

§16-27A-1. Legislative findings and purposes.
The Legislature finds and declares that the use of nuclear fuels and nuclear power poses an undue hazard to the health, safety and welfare of the people of the state of West Virginia, especially until there is an effective method to safely and permanently dispose of the radioactive wastes generated thereby. Therefore, it is the intent of the Legislature and the purpose of this article to ban the construction of any nuclear power plant, nuclear factory or nuclear electric power generating plant until such time as the proponents of any such facility can adequately demonstrate that a functional and effective national facility, which safely, successfully and permanently disposes of radioactive wastes, has been developed;…
” Read more here: http://www.legis.state.wv.us/wvcode/ChapterEntire.cfm?chap=16&art=27A

While Kentucky banned nuclear power because of no high level waste facility, it apparently had loopholes, due to the USEC facility at Paducah: http://www.lrc.ky.gov/record/15RS/HB84/bill.doc (unless this is a proposal).

Hydro-electric power project construction, 1942: Part of FDR’s New Deal
Construction of the Douglas Hydroelectric Dam in Tennessee (TVA), 1942, A. Palmer, Farm Security Adm.
Construction of the Douglas Hydroelectric Dam in Tennessee (TVA), 1942, Alfred Palmer, Farm Security Adm.

T.V.A.’s service area covers most of Tennessee, portions of Alabama, Mississippi, and Kentucky, and small slices of Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tennessee_Valley_Authority#Renewable_generation
T.V.A. has a network of 29 hydropower dams, throughout the Tennessee River system, some of which date back to the 1930s. It purchases power from 8 dams on the Cumberland River, which are operated by the Army Corps of Engineers, and has a pumped-storage plant near Chattanooga called Racoon Mountain. It also operates many small solar and wind facilities. https://www.tva.gov/Energy/Our-Power-System/Hydroelectric https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tennessee_Valley_Authority#Renewable_generation (List of solar and wind facilities found at Wikipedia link).

According to ARC (Appalachian Regional Commission):
Appalachia’s Energy Landscape
Appalachia and energy have been closely linked throughout the history of the nation, mainly due to the importance of coal mining in the Region. Appalachian mines currently produce 35 percent of the nation’s coal output, and Appalachian coal generated $16 billion of output and $720 million in taxes in 2005. Appalachia is also a net exporter of coal- and nuclear-generated electricity. In 2004, electrical power utilities in the Region generated 15 percent of the total U.S. electrical output, although the population of the Appalachian Region is only 8 percent of the nation’s. (Electrical generation data derived from EIA-860 Database Annual Electrical Generation Report and from Electric Power Monthly. Energy Information Administration.)

Though Appalachia is best known for its coal resources, it is beginning to develop its potential for the development of renewable energy sources found in wind, water, and waste products. Wind power is significantly underdeveloped in the Region, and has the greatest potential for development along the ridge lines of the Appalachian Mountains. There are 528 megawatts of installed wind power capacity in the Appalachian states, nearly 1,000 megawatts of planned capacity, and the potential for over 11,000 megawatts of additional capacity.

Significant renewable energy opportunities can also be found in the development of energy from biomass, biofuels, solar power, and hydropower. Energy from biomass converts specially grown crops, sawmill wood residue, agricultural wastes, and other organic matter into new energy sources and fuels. The total annual biomass resources for the Appalachian states are estimated to be over 108 million tons. Biofuel potential is estimated to be 500 million gallons annually, based on converting 2005 output for corn and soybean production to ethanol and biodiesel fuels. Solar power’s best potential in the eastern United States, including Appalachia, is likely to be for residential or commercial application. In the Appalachian Region, production of residential and commercial photovoltaic (PV) power is currently viable in southern Appalachia, and several PV manufacturing plants are located throughout northern Appalachia. Passive solar installations such as day-lighting, solar ventilation air preheating, hot water heaters, and pool heating may give the best return on current investment in solar technology. Small and low-impact hydroelectric capability is another largely undeveloped energy resource in Appalachia. The Region is traversed by several major rivers and watersheds that create numerous opportunities for small-scale and low-flow hydropower installations. This category of hydroelectric generation is based on damless technology. Total hydropower potential could be as high as 5,700 megawatts of average available capacity. (Center on Business and Economic Research, Marshall University. [August 28, 2006]. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy in Appalachia: Policy and Potential. Retrieved August 31, 2006, from http://www.marshall.edu/cber/research/index.htm)
In addition to this impressive array of potential alternative energy resources, the Appalachian Region possesses an extensive industrial manufacturing base that is already engaged in the production of some of these emerging energy technologies, particularly wind turbine components, solar components and photovoltaic panels, and biofuel plants. (Ibid., chapter 3; and see Economic Development Potential of Conventional and Potential Alternative Sources in Appalachian Counties, Amy Glasmeier, Pennsylvania State University, June 21, 2006.) Appalachia’s industrial base has numerous potential supplier chain links that could be cultivated within these alternative energy sectors and that promise additional job creation for the Region’s manufacturing base. (Ibid., Glasmeier, June 21, 2006.)
[Apparently their point is that there is still much more potential for hydro, along with other renewables, in the region. The lack of discussion of TVA is strange, however.]

No More Nuclear Dogpatch!

During the war, security concerns required officials to refer to Clinton Laboratories by its code name, X-10. The personnel of Monsanto Chemical Company, the new operating contractor, continued this practice in the postwar years. The remote Appalachian location of Clinton Laboratories, along with unpaved streets and spartan living conditions, presented an easy target for ridicule. Metallurgical Laboratory personnel in Chicago called X-10 “Down Under,” while Du Pont personnel labeled it the “Gopher Training School.” In official telegrams, Monsanto’s staff referred to Oak Ridge as “Dogpatch,” taking their cue from Li’l Abner, a popular comic strip lampooning “hillbilly” Appalachian life. Such ill-concealed scorn did not bode well either for postwar Monsanto administration or Laboratory research. (See related article, From Installation Dog to Katy’s Kitchen.)

The choice of Monsanto as contract operator of Clinton Laboratories seemed logical because of the Laboratories’ focus on chemistry and chemical technology. Monsanto was also interested in becoming a key player in nuclear reactor development. Charles Thomas, Monsanto vice president, was the driving force behind the company’s entry into nuclear science. A famous chemist, Thomas had established a laboratory at Dayton, Ohio, that Monsanto purchased in 1936, making it the company’s central research laboratory.

Most of this post was set up last summer (July 12, 2015). Unfortunately, like so many of our drafts something came up and it got misplaced.