Climate change and extreme weather already are causing disruptions in the U.S. energy supply that are likely to worsen as more intense storms, higher temperatures and more frequent droughts occur, the government says in a new report.
The report, released Thursday by the Energy Department, says blackouts and other problems caused by Superstorm Sandy and other extreme weather events are likely to be repeated across the country as an aging energy infrastructure struggles to adapt to rising seas, higher storm surges and increased flooding. A range of energy sources are at risk, from coal-fired power plants to oil wells, hydroelectric dams and nuclear power plants.
Climate-related disasters have already costs tens of billions of dollars, and the report says costs could grow exponentially unless a more comprehensive and accelerated response is adopted.
Obama’s Climate Action Plan: Nuclear Energy
Last week, President Obama presented his Climate Action Plan. The plan sets out 1) to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, especially carbon; 2) to prepare the U.S. for the impacts of climate change; and 3) to lead international efforts to avert global warming.
Although less in the headlines than the plan’s position on coal-fired power plants, hydraulic fracturing and the Keystone XL Pipeline, nuclear energy forms a crucial component of President Obama’s climate action plan. And action is moving ahead by leaps and bounds.