Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
I'm Shepard Smith.
Studio maybe it's the bottom of the hour time for the top of the federal regulators have given the OK to start construction on -- US nuclear plant for the first time in more than three decades.
An Atlanta based power company made the request to build it edit existing site.
About forty minutes or so south Augusta Georgia.
But a regulator who opposed the move has said these new reactors may not meet certain safety standards.
Which went into effect after last year's disaster at the Fukushima nuclear play pet planet in northern Japan.
The last time federal officials approved any license to build a nuclear reactor was way back in 1978.
A year before the partial meltdown at Pennsylvania's Three Mile Island plant.
Jamie Colby with the news she's live in New York City hello Jamie.
-- -- you know after all these here is it's interesting that they got the approval to do this expansion but there's still many people who are against as you mentioned but not President Obama.
He's pledged eight point three billion in federal loan guarantees toward the Georgia nuclear reactor expansion.
The cost of the two new reactors planned at that existing site is fourteen billion dollars.
Now Westinghouse electric -- the manufacturer -- -- the reactors they say.
This in other expansions at they have plan could support as many as 35000.
Workers at their company and their supplier so at first blush.
It sounds like this is a win win.
But the company who owns the site is already defending the plan over safety concerns.
As fears following the Three Mile Island disaster -- all these years later have still not been content.
The NRC's process.
Has been awful.
It has been -- and it is complete.
It delivers a regime of safety oversight and accountability.
That our communities rightfully.
And then who could forget the unforgettable.
Scene following Japan's Fukushima disaster.
It was captured on so many graphic images and it was so much loss of life the nuclear regulatory committee's chairman is himself worried as you mention.
Casting the only voted against the Georgia expansion.
-- he says he doesn't believe all the safety criteria that we now understand we need.
Have been put in place.
There are currently 104 nuclear power plants in the US -- provides 20% of our nation's electricity so the question is.
Could be approval signal a resurgence of nuclear energy production something President Obama says he's committed to.
It may but it's really too soon to tell but it will definitely served.
As the first valuable test in years of one of the industry can growing newer technology can be put in place they can actually keep workers and residents Saturn near facilities.
Out of harm's way.
Certainly what we hope Jamie -- be in New York Jamie thanks let's turn to Michael bell -- now he's the former director of Homeland Security for the State of New York.
Right now managing partner of blue water international which is a global security firm you know there was a time not that long ago where everybody was afraid nuclear power.
Then Japan came along but in the United States we have some needs where are -- Right now and you know -- thirty years we haven't had any new licenses.
And obviously for PM and it was one of these Fukushima was one of these it's defining moments in this that yes the unthinkable can happen and now what happens.
The General Electric plants and that is in Georgia right now.
There -- new design and with the -- a passive system.
So essentially the things that went wrong in Japan they're saying can't go wrong here you'll have to rely -- a -- kicking in this basically the natural forces within the plant that will shut it down.
Because as you know it's all about the core meltdown.
That's why have containment domes and when you take a look back at the history.
Of nuclear power it really has been relatively safe compared to.
Other types of energy the only problem with it is when -- -- safe that's -- that like the one out here right on Long Island that has thirty million people -- -- few miles of the thing it's at any point.
Then -- -- gotten a bending towards of Indian point still be concerned about their evacuation plans as a matter of fact is things happening now the NRC is basically rejected.
Their ability to take some of the safety precautions and -- in different way so we continue to be an evolving issue but the key concerns are.
-- only what would happen for the core reactor but and other things that way -- with the waste -- -- you can't take it off site when it's too hot.
And in issues like cyber security how safe are the plans on that are operated through -- assistance -- -- like all these questions would I like the answers.
I think that you if you take a look at history it goes for the nuclear power industry.
They've conducted safe operations -- take a look at the future and what happened in Japan and raises lots of very legitimate questions on behalf of the public.
Every day we got a new story I was over there for awhile and every day they tell us something new.
No there's no meltdown no there's no meltdown though there's no meltdown courses melting down -- whole time.
Right and that's him and we take a look at Chernobyl.
You know and you obviously -- was a design -- there but nonetheless that's the worst case scenario.
And that's what has transfixed everybody as a rating relates to this type event and rightly so hopefully -- figured out.
Like Michael necessary future.
Filter by section