Letter to the Editor: American Electric Generation… The Future


Dear Editor,

Now that I’ve figured that the good people of Carbon & Emery Counties have a good idea of the history of Electric Generation up to and including the renewable sources, it’s time to broach the subject of what the future holds.

The first matter to consider is simple economics. In order to regrow the American economy we will need electricity, lots of it. The technology to provide this energy is within the framework of Nuclear power generation.

Enclosed is a link to an article detailing how President Trump correctly views this energy source.

The first generation of Nuclear power generation is and has been dead or dying.  There are several reasons for this condition, the primary of which is Nuclear waste storage. The previous generation of nuclear energy failed to provide adequate on site storage of spent fuel.  After they ran out of room for on site storage, the neighboring states refused to let them send the waste out West through their states via truck or rail.

So when it comes to nuclear power generation the name of the game is location, location, location.

The Japanese found this out in spades with their nuclear plant located right on the seashore.   Why did they decide to build it there? Economics. They did not want to build multi million dollar cooling towers and instead used the sea water to cool the generated steam back to feedwater.

If you drive by the Huntington or Hunter plants you will see these cooling towers evaporating water (steam) to send back to the plant as feedwater.  This water to steam and back to water is a closed cycle so the plant need only supply a small amount of make up water.The result of this decision in Japan is now history.

Now then, the Blue Castle Nuclear Project in Green River is moving forward, if slowly.  This project has none of the difficulties of the plant in Japan nor the previous nuclear sites anywhere in the world.

Green River is a ‘Cradle to Grave’ site.   It is not built on any fault line. It has no ground water to contaminate. Cradle to Grave refers to the fact that the Uranium ore can be mined from a site south of Green River. Likewise it can be milled info fuel at an existing mill also just south of Green River. There is virtually unlimited waste storage on site.   Granted, new roads will be required to connect these resources, but the entire operation would not use any existing highways. In fact the large boiler, turbine and generator equipment can be delivered via rail to the Green River site.

The major obstacle to construction and operation is water.  However, the water shares have already been secured. A large reservoir will be necessary, but as the people of this local community have already found out, another Electric Lake or Millsite would be a big plus for recreation.  These nuclear sites are very large generation machines, typically 1000 to 1200 MW each unit.

A note about safety: the US Navy has had nearly 40 years of Nuclear subs and aircraft carriers with out a single incident.

70% of electric power in Europe is Nuclear. Even many environmentalists now admit that Nuclear power is the safest , non polluting renewable energy. The most important facet for our local economy is short term construction jobs and long term employment for our residents,to say nothing of the tax base. The number of construction and long term employment will be greater than Huntington and Hunter combined.

In addition to this great amount of new generation, it will be necessary to build transmission power lines. These lines would run down eastern Utah to Arizona, Nevada and California as well as east to Texas.

You live here. What is between this new generation site and those destinations?  Yupper, NOTTA.

So the time has come for the good people in this two county area to lobby their elected politicians from local to State to Federal, and express vocal support from the community to those who can make this happen.

The sooner the better. If this seems like a no brainer for this community, it is because it is just that.

I have also included a link to the ‘Blue Castle’ Project that will answer most all of your questions.

John H. McCurdy
Instrument & Control Coach Huntington Plant, retired



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