Letter to the editor: Nuclear power supports jobs in Pa.
While it may be uncomfortable for some people to hear the facts about the negative consequences other states and communities have suffered from the premature closing of nuclear power plants, it would be irresponsible not to learn from those experiences.
Fortunately for the citizens of Pennsylvania, our state and local leaders want to know the facts.
Pennsylvania’s five nuclear stations support nearly 16,000 direct and indirect jobs, have an annual payroll of $360 million, and lead to about $81 million in tax revenue from secondary/induced economic activity from plant and employee activities.
The nuclear energy industry also purchases more than $1.8 billion of materials, services and fuel from more than 4,150 companies in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania’s nuclear plants contribute approximately $2.36 billion to the state’s gross domestic product (GDP).
Nuclear power helps strengthen our power grid’s reliability and resilience, especially during extreme weather periods like the recent winter storm.
We also know the terrible impact communities have felt even with the closing of only one facility (Vermont Yankee). Knowing that we face a similar fate with the potential premature closing of Three Mile Island in the fall of 2019, hundreds of community leaders, small business owners, conservationists, labor leaders and elected officials have formed the Clean Jobs for Pennsylvania Coalition. A bipartisan group of state legislators has formed the Nuclear Energy Caucus to look into the issue. And more than 20 local governments and school boards have passed resolutions urging state lawmakers to consider energy policy reform that correctly values the zero-emission power produced by nuclear power plants. The negative consequences on our economy, energy grid and environment are too significant not to.
Clean Jobs for Pennsylvania Coalition co-chair and Dauphin County Commissioner