Letters to the Editor

Bleymaier letter: INL

Just finished reading “Proving the Principle,” a phenomenal historical book for Idahoans that is timely today. Published by the Idaho National Laboratory, written by Susan Stacy, it chronicles the first time the world harnessed nuclear energy to produce electricity.

As a born-and-raised Idahoan who studied engineering in college and nuclear policy through grad school, it wasn’t until this book that I was aware of the unbelievable history of innovation that happened in eastern Idaho.

With energy a hot topic, solar and battery factories in other states often get press; however, 57 percent of carbon-free electricity generated in the U.S. last year came from nuclear power, compared to 3 percent from solar (source EIA).

This is a timely year given a historic milestone reached in March by NuScale, an Oregon company with decades of work behind a design for an advanced nuclear reactor. They reached a critical regulatory stage with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and their first design is slated to be built in Idaho, at INL.

Misconceptions about nuclear abound (nuclear is the safest power generator by mortalities per kilowatt), but Idahoans shouldn’t miss out on knowing their fantastic history and future with this technology.

Tom Bleymaier, Boise