July 21, 2009
Dear Friends,
Look, we understand. You're either at the beach or wish you were. You're in the mountains or huddled up in air conditioning. You're at your job, or wish you had a job.
It's mid-summer, and the last thing most of us want to think about is the prospect of 50 or 100 new nuclear reactors being built across the U.S.
But that's what could happen if we don't all act now.
When we sent our Alert out about new nuclear reactors and the Senate climate bill last week, we said it was essential that we all take action, and that we expand and grow, because even all of us isn't enough.
But while the numbers sound pretty impressive--more than 2750 letters to the Senate so far (and thank you to everyone who has responded!)--it's a small percentage of our list, and it isn't enough.
We need the rest of you too--and then your friends and colleagues and acquaintances and co-workers and relatives and everyone else you can think of. This is going to take a truly massive effort on all our part.
We need veteran activists, we need people writing their Senators for the first time, and everybody in between.
We've made it as easy as possible to send a letter to your Senators, all you have to do is click here.
That's the first step.
Second step is to forward this link ( to anyone and everyone you can think of, to every mailing list possible. We need to DELUGE the Senate with letters if we're going to win this one--this is the biggest and hardest fight we've had in years. And we need to do it now, while decisions are being made and positions being taken behind-the-scenes.
Third step is, if you can afford it at all, to donate some money to help us place some blog ads and take other steps to do even more outreach. We're living by a shoestring ourselves, just as many of you are, and we just can't afford to do the necessary outreach without your help.
Some in the Senate really want 100 new reactors in the U.S. over the next 20 years. That's the mentality we're fighting. Unfortunately, others seem willing to "compromise" with only 25 or 50 reactors and once again, $50 billion in new taxpayer loan guarantees for new reactor construction. We say, as I know you say, NO DEAL. No more reactors, no more taxpayer dollars for nuclear power, no more radioactive waste, no more nuclear proliferation. Enough is enough, and we've had enough.
We're fighting an opponent with massive resources. The Southern Company alone has more lobbyists working on the climate bill than the combined resources of all anti-nuclear Washington groups. And they're outspending us about 5,000 to 1.
Don't assume you're in a state with "safe" Senators--we must pressure our allies not to compromise. If they don't hear from us, they'll assume they can compromise.
And don't stay silent if you're in a state with hostile Senators--we need to embarrass them, protest against them, expose their support for nuclear power interests.
In short, we need to raise the stakes--a lot.
So, write your Senators now--it's the first and easiest thing you can do.
Then, spread the word, as far and as fast as you can.
Then, if you can, please contribute. If you can't, we understand. But if you can spare even $5, it helps a lot in spreading our message.
Finally, make plans now to meet and greet your Senators during their August recess. Especially those of you in active organizations, we need to have visible protests against those plying the nuclear industry line, and we need to have meetings with those on the fence and even those normally with us. We need to make sure there is no compromise: there must be no nuclear power in the climate bill, or there must be no climate bill. So start calling your Senators' district offices (contact NIRS if you need phone numbers, and start arranging for meetings and planning protests.
Let's get a visible protest outside every single Senator's office who has expressed support for nuclear power in the climate bill (if you don't know where your Senators stand, contact us). Local media is important, but NIRS will also help you publicize these protests to help gain attention across the country.
Again, we all need to act and act now. I know none of us wants to sit there in five years and say "if only we had acted...."
The good news is we CAN win this! Against tremendous odds, we've already defeated two efforts this year to add $50 billion in taxpayer loan guarantees for new reactors. We can stop more loan guarantees and more taxpayer support for nuclear power again.
As always, thanks for all you do; but this time, we all need to do a little more.....

Michael Mariotte
Executive Director
Nuclear Information and Resource Service