Bill Gates Backs Nuclear Energy Bill to ‘Prevent Worst Effects of Climate Change’

The Associated Press
Jose Luis Magana/AP

Microsoft founder Bill Gates celebrated proposed legislation which would advance the development of nuclear energy technology, Thursday.

Gates, a notable backer of nuclear energy, responded to proposed legislation “which establishes an ambitious plan to accelerate the development of advanced nuclear reactor technologies,” Thursday.

“Yesterday, a bipartisan group of leaders in the U.S. Senate introduced the Nuclear Energy Leadership Act, which establishes an ambitious plan to accelerate the development of advanced nuclear reactor technologies. I can’t overstate how important this is,” Gates declared. “To prevent the worst effects of climate change, we need to reach near-zero emissions on all the things that drive it—agriculture, electricity, manufacturing, transportation, and buildings—by investing in innovation across all sectors while deploying low cost renewables.”

“Nuclear energy is one of these critical technologies. It’s ideal for dealing with climate change, because it is the only carbon-free, scalable energy source that’s available 24 hours a day,” he continued. “I’m thrilled that senators from both sides of the aisle have come together to support advanced nuclear. This is exactly the kind of leadership our country needs to both solve the climate challenge and reassert our leadership in this important industry.”

The legislation, titled the Nuclear Energy Leadership Act, would “direct the Secretary of Energy to establish advanced nuclear goals, provide for a versatile, reactor-based fast neutron source, make available high assay, low-enriched uranium for research, development, and demonstration of advanced nuclear reactor concepts, and for other purposes.”

It was introduced by Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sen. James Risch (R-ID), Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID), Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE), Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH).

“The Nuclear Energy Leadership Act (NELA), aims to reestablish U.S. leadership in nuclear energy,” claimed a press release. “It will bring together private and public sector innovators to develop next-generation advanced reactor concepts.”

As reported by GeekWire, “Back in December, Gates listed nuclear energy research as one of his top policy priorities, and he reportedly followed up by promising lawmakers he’d invest $1 billion of his own money and line up another $1 billion in private capital if federal funds were approved for a TerraPower pilot project in the United States.”

Charlie Nash is a reporter for Breitbart Tech. You can follow him on Twitter, or like his page at Facebook.

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