Opinion: For New Jersey’s air, subtracting nuclear means more pollution

Oyster Creek nuclear plant new jersey

BOB PERCIASEPE / APP.COM – We’ve seen this movie before. Whether it was in California, Florida, Vermont, Wisconsin and now in New Jersey, wherever nuclear power plants have retired, carbon pollution has increased along with particulates and smog forming emissions.

The Oyster Creek nuclear plant retired last September, and not surprisingly, its zero-emission output is now being replaced by generation from emitting (i.e., carbon and other air pollutants) natural gas and coal plants. The result is that New Jersey’s greenhouse gas emissions are increasing by hundreds of thousands of tons each month (the equivalent of adding 500,000 vehicles to our roads), putting in jeopardy positive progress on climate goals. Additionally, New Jersey’s metropolitan areas all exceed particulate and smog standards dozens of times a year and this only makes that harder to remedy …

Bob Perciasepe is president of the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions and former deputy administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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