Letter: When discussing nuclear energy, consider greenhouse effect of alternatives

May 7, 2013 

Isn't there something missing in the April 25th front page article about closing the Columbia Generating Station? There is lots of talk about nuclear power cost, replacement power costs, vent modification and fuel costs? But I thought the big issue of the day for all those pushing for social responsibility was the impending disaster of global warming.

It is pretty easy to calculate the increased amount of carbon dioxide that would be released by burning natural gas to produce replacement electricity. It is about 1.3 pounds for every kilowatt-hour. Columbia Generating Station is a big plant. Multiply out the numbers and you will find that each year burning natural gas would generate an additional 5 million tons of carbon dioxide.

What is the cost of that and is it socially responsible?

CARL FIES, Richland

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