Worcester Telegram & Gazette
The four candidates hoping to win this fall’s gubernatorial contest finally got down to business Monday night with a debate that focused largely on energy, including nuclear power’s role.
GOP challenger Charles D. Baker and independent candidate Timothy P. Cahill were sharpest, calling for more nuclear investment. Mr. Cahill said it is important to renew the operating license for the Pilgrim station, and contrasted the 10 percent of electricity that Massachusetts gets from nuclear to the 74 percent Vermont enjoys.
Gov. Deval Patrick expressed support for nukes, but also concern over waste disposal. In fact, the technical challenges of waste disposal have been largely solved. The cancellation of plans for the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository was driven not by science, but by politics. Political leaders, including governors, must help change that dynamic.
Most disappointing was Green Rainbow candidate Dr. Jill Stein, who declared, “Absolutely no, we don’t want to go nuclear,” and said it would be “incredibly foolhardy” to back further nuclear subsidies. She cited the wildfires threatening Russian nuclear facilities and areas contaminated by fallout from the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.