Unions Applaud White House Green Light for Plant Vogtle (GA) Nuclear Project

Funds allocation for Georgia plant signals brighter prospects for future nuclear plant projects.

WASHINGTON, DC – America’s Building Trades Unions praised today’s announcement by President Obama that federal loan guarantees will be provided by the U.S. Department of Energy for the construction of the Plant Vogtle nuclear power station in Georgia.

The Building Trades have long been in support of federal loan guarantees for the construction of nuclear power facilities, and sees today’s announcement as an acknowledgment that our nation is in need of a comprehensive and sensible national energy policy that will strengthen our economic and national security.

“Our growing needs for affordable energy, combined with price volatility, dependence upon politically unstable regimes that supply much of our oil and gas, and global climate change concerns demands that nuclear power be a central part of the discussion over our national energy policy,” said Mark H. Ayers, President of the Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO.

“We are pleased that President Obama recognizes the strategic importance that a re-vitalized nuclear power industry can play. And by conducting this announcement at IBEW Local 26 Joint Apprenticeship Training Center, the president also recognizes the important role that our skilled craft training programs will play in order to ensure that a revitalized nuclear industry is coupled with ‘high-road’ jobs and careers.”

America’s Building Trades Unions have long recognized the need to plan for the future, and to design a functional and reasonable approach to developing a national energy policy designed to ensure the availability of affordable energy for both U.S. businesses and consumers. These objectives can be met only through the development, installation and continued operation of energy technologies from a broad portfolio of energy resources – including nuclear power – which will have the added social benefits of contributing to the sustained creation of solid, well-paying middle class jobs and careers, and will encourage the efficient use of all energy resources to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and lessen our dependence upon foreign energy sources.

With strong support from President Obama and the Department of Energy, we hope that today’s announcement will serve as a precursor for future projects – such as the Calvert Cliffs 3 project in Maryland, as well as planned projects in other states – that will ensure the continued re-vitalization of our domestic nuclear power industry, as well as the development of tens of thousands of stable, middle-class careers for decades to come.

The Building and Construction Trades Department is an alliance of 13 national and international unions that collectively represent 2.5 million skilled craft professionals in the United States and Canada.