McCain v. Obama on Energy
As Friends of the Earth and Grist have pointed out, The Wall Street Journal’s comparison of the presidential candidates’ energy policies reaches an incomplete conclusion. The WSJ’s Stephen Power argues that Sen. Obama supports a big government role while Sen. McCain supports a more hands-off approach. But that’s not really the case when it comes to McCain and nuclear energy.
In his 2007 climate bill, for example, McCain added $3.7 billion dollars in subsidies for new nuclear plants. Power does acknowledge McCain’s repeated calls for "incentives" for nuclear power, but leaves it at that. The Arizona senator has repeatedly said the federal government must support new technology development and research and development for the nuclear industry. Although he’s been vague about what "support" means exactly, he has explicitly called for loan guarantees and indirect subsidies. (Yale’s new online mag e360 sums up both McCain’s and Obama’s energy stances in a concise little post.)
As politicians and industry folks continue to flirt with the concept of a "nuclear renaissance," each candidate’s nuke plan becomes more and more relevant.