Rebranding Nuclear Technology through Grassroots Education
Advanced Reactors Technical Summit III, 2016
Oakridge National Laboratory, Tennessee
First, we have to accept that, world discussions of a cost competitive Low-carbon energy portfolio
cannot be met without development of new, advanced research, nuclear power technology.
Rebrand, redirect, renew, recycle
Our USNEF presentation to the Advanced Reactor Technical Summit III will help us focus more on the detail and programs we can produce for nuclear technology worldwide. The current discussion is indicative that public grassroots outreach is a growing importance of public awareness. In order to advance this messaging, we hope to rebrand nuclear power by developing cooperative programs with the industry.
Why is engaging the public important? Congress and senate are educated by industry lobbyists. What the industry and stakeholders should consider is, when Senators and Congressman return home for Constituent visits, an educated public on nuclear technology may be as important as the beltway influence of lobbyists. Here, our representatives get an opinion from the business community and the constituent community. Community friendly is, “a place where people balance truth”.
The world discussion of a Low-carbon energy portfolio must include nuclear power. Nuclear energy is a major part of America’s low-carbon energy footprint. Our nuclear plants provide 63% of the zero-carbon electricity. Sixteen states continue to have restrictions against the construction of new nuclear plants. This arithmetic is not political, it is fact. We must realize that carbon emission reduction goals CANNOT be met without developing new nuclear power. Our mission has to rebrand nuclear outreach advocacy.
A 30-40 year example of government gridlock is the nation’s absolute need for a national nuclear repository. Such issues cannot be postponed due to bureaucratic maneuvering, this proves the NEED for grassroots education about nuclear technology. There is NO best place for nuclear waste, we have it and will continue to produce it. There has to be a reasonable place and this requires an educational outreach to the grassroots public. Current science predicts that within 20 years nuclear technology will be capable of eliminating 96% of our current nuclear waste inventory. Mankind has seen more science fiction come to science fruition in the past two decades than we could have imagined!
Our long term mission is to drive government, industry and academia to provide better education about
Nuclear technology in public policy and messaging to the grassroots public.
I Rebranding Overview:
Identifying that there is a gap between nuclear technology, public policy and the grassroots public.
- Although our original development of nuclear was for a nuclear bomb started in 1942 via General Groves, President Eisenhower attempted rebranding it within 10 years of establishment of the atomic age. For the basics of nuclear technology we must include its establishment and reasons it was improperly branded and not course corrected within the first decade.
A World mission to develop generic print collaterals with sponsorship and distribution by the stakeholders.
- Through the affiliation with like-minded nuclear advocacy groups we need to produce generic educational materials that can be distributed via any method as handouts via business, social organizations, educational institutions etc. This need must be recognized by government and industry, the critical education of society.
If you present the truth about nuclear technology, you CANNOT remain politically correct.
- Our educational process has to bridge the gap between science and political opinion. Not only nuclear but all energy companies face issues on advancement when challenged by political and or regulatory opinion. We have to roll this type of political maneuvering back. Science and engineering decisions through majority consensus should be the root of an educated grassroots public.
4) The process of nuclear education and political correctness will only be corrected when we learn to support the values of truth, integrity and character of science and engineering over political opinion.
II Educational Materials:
Print collaterals designed for the grassroots public, simple factual statements, comparing safety, loss of life numbers compared to fossil fuel energy, etc.
- The development of a series of pocket size rack cards or postcards for handout can be very efficient at generating bullet lists of factual information for multiple teaching topics.
Simplifying, focusing, and distribution of collaterals to young K-12 students and via social media.
- Once the teaching data is established it can be scaled to the K-12 audience levels. The need to educate the youth is vital for a future graduation of basic nuclear awareness as well as potential nuclear science and engineering careers.
Engaging the university systems, science & engineering departments to establish nuclear technology advocate chapters for internal and public grassroots education.
- There was a time when many U.S. university systems had setup mini nuclear technology laboratories. These should be revitalized. We have to recognize that nuclear is a renewable energy source and the more developed the more the volume installations will decrease the production costs.
- The American Nuclear Society, (ANS) has a membership of about 11,000. They have had student-university members for years. This section of ANS should be expanded greatly in order to motivate this group of young people to expand and pursue nuclear technology, not only from the nuclear energy sector but all forms of nuclear health sciences, biology, medicine, Isotopes, radiation, etc.
Engaging all nuclear corporate stakeholders in supporting the unified distribution of materials and support of university system grassroots education.
Establish and conduct “Nuclear Educational Symposiums” open to the public, students and business communities.
III Science & Engineering versus politics and the public:
Every nuclear energy stakeholder must adopt a public policy of grassroots education and promote it.
- This is one of the primary reasons that the nuclear advocacy faded out. Atoms for Peace ignited the fire for peaceful applications of nuclear energy, but, the stakeholders didn’t recognize the need for continued public education.
A community friendly public will only come from an educated grassroots. No matter if this is from the public, politicians, government agencies. Sales are made on the basis of function, safety, economics and education.
The nuclear industry holds many technical summits, symposiums and seminars that are excellent, but these industry participants must also achieve a sellable dialogue to the grassroots public and politicians. Educating the public may provide a stronger message to rebrand nuclear politics. Community friendly is, “A place where people balance TRUTH”.
IV The value of public symposiums:
In 2013 USNEF held a one day Yucca Educational Symposium, (YES), bringing together for an open dialogue, with the public, industry experts, Congressional and County representatives and students.
Successful and in order to preserve the format and participants the program sessions were video recorded along with four separate personal interviews.
Symposiums provide the platform for participation by the general public, science, business, congressional representatives, government agencies, students and county commissioners.
They provide the public with methods for engagement of their representatives.
V The road to a community friendly environmentally safe nuclear energy future.
The nation’s failure to build or continue with the premise of the original “Atoms for Peace” speech by President Eisenhower in 1953 has been responsible among other issues, for the prevention of new nuclear technology expansion in the U.S.
Grassroots public education is required for a new branding of community friendly nuclear technology.
We should turn to developing educational surveys for the enlightenment of the grassroots public. Survey questions which contain a truthful educational message as part of the question.
The mission in messaging Nevada on a nuclear repository should be a direct mail program to 160,000 households, with radio & TV support to effectively contact the public voice.
A survey can demonstrate proven safety, longevity and security facts that are held by the nuclear industry.
The survey will encourage the public to engage their representatives to support a future nuclear energy development.
Several non-profit nuclear advocacy groups could develop affiliations specific to grant application development to establish funding mechanisms for such surveys.
The industry, agencies and associations will have to sign-on to supporting such survey programs. We have to rebrand grassroots education and public policy in order to bring such programs to success. It is a vital step in in proving that the public can alter political direction through an educated grassroots.
Atoms for Peace speech, speech delivered to the United Nations by U.S. Pres. Dwight D. Eisenhower on December 8, 1953. In this address, Eisenhower spelled out the necessity of repurposing existing nuclear weapons technology to peaceful ends, stating that it must be humanity’s goal to discover “the way by which the miraculous inventiveness of man shall not be dedicated to his death, but consecrated to his life.” The speech marked one of the earliest calls to curb the global nuclear arms race, and it inspired the creation of the International Atomic Energy Agency in 1956.
This topic, Nevada's I-11 interstate
Nevada Economics and advanced nuclear technology!
I spent some time recently updating our USNEF page on Yucca and the I-11 interstate. Kindly review the PDF link at the bottom. (Yucca-and-the-I-11-Interstate-2018-Update) ALL Nevada stakeholders should really think about this! Also consider that the Vegas local 525 plumber’s union “supports” completing the Yucca app study, and the IEEE Electrical & Electronic Engineers. I know that the LV business community has been misled concerning the politics about the Yucca Mountain Project, but, the Yucca economic value far outweighs the politics! The actual business model is best described this way:
Our recommendation is more geared to Boise, Idaho, Richland and Spokane WA. Up to Calgary, Canada 1) These would be easier markets to develop than competing with I-5 Portland, OR and Seattle, WA to Vancouver. 2) connecting these “Department of Energy laboratories” would gain major support from them, and the DOE. 3) Calgary would love a drive to Boise, Reno and Las Vegas. There is pro-hockey in Boise, & Vegas, Reno hasn’t woken up yet.
I really need you to find some sources who can assemble some estimates of what such a potential market could develop so that we could add them to our discussion. Remember, a “Yucca build” will be the largest economic engine Nevada has ever seen, in spite of itself. I-11 would be a tremendous asset to Yucca and the I-11 corridor!
A potential Yucca business model is best described this way: The Vegas casino BUILDS, MGM Grand, Winn Resorts, Venetian, Mandalay Bay, Mirage ALL together total roughly 5.6 billion in construction “build” price tags. The construction of Yucca Mountain is estimated at $97 billion dollars.
It is the largest single infrastructure project ever designed. Contrary to the Nevada political-business “opinions”, It is a massive temporary storage garage incorporating the most advanced technology in robotics, drone surveillance and many other ground breaking engineering resolutions. The fear from the political and casino industry is that, in itself, the Yucca build will have the capacity to alter the technology economic direction of the state which could well reduce “control” by Nevada politics and the casinos entertainment industry. The infusion of 5,000 scientists & and engineers will redirect Nevada’s education system with much more input from an educated public to Nevada’s university system. Such a driving economic will also drive the attraction of "service labor".
This misunderstanding by both the casinos and politicians is that nothing could match Yucca’s ability to quadruple the casino market and tax base for the state. Then, over the next fifty years, there is no argument that future science WILL make us capable of REPROCESSING 96% of the erroneously called “waste” in our storage garage for future nuclear fuel. This inventory valued at $14-trillion dollars. You can argue detail economics today, but, a cell phone proves that science and technology has replaced our “phone booth” a few years back and will do the same as nuclear reprocessing matures.
This is not an easy dialogue to digest for any entity, but it does require a degree of future entrepreneurial vision, versus opposition.
Gary J Duarte, Director, USNEF
Grassroots education, the answer for questions.