The cheapest, cleanest electron is the one you do not use.
I applaud Mayor Bloomberg’s study of the impacts of shutting Indian Point’s 2 nuclear reactors. But reporting on such work is fatally incomplete without the including of the positive impact of improving energy efficiency in our buildings.
Real energy efficiency in metropolitan New York can reduce electric demand equal to 25% of the current output of Indian Point. That should be the first place to start for a lot of reasons: Efficiency is cheaper and faster than any other replacement strategy. Efficiency pays for itself in short order.
The good news is that NYSERDA and DOE are already funding significant building efficiency programs that show very promising early results. For example, hundreds of homeowners in northern Westchester County–Indian Point’s backyard—have already signed for home energy assessments and upgrades. See http://energizebedford.org/ for the pilot Energize Program that will be rolling out across all of Northern Westchester’s 14 municipalities later this year.