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PRI's Environmental News Magazine

Listener Letters

Air Date: Week of October 1, 2004

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We dip into the Living on Earth mailbag to hear what listeners have to say.

Transcript

CURWOOD: It’s Living on Earth, I’m Steve Curwood. Time now to hear from you, our listeners.

[LETTERS THEME]

CURWOOD: Our recent story about Republican Senator John McCain’s stance on global warming drew a range of responses. Some of you praised the Arizona senator for being a leading advocate in Congress for action on climate change.

“What a coup!” writes Alan Barlow, who hears us in KUOW in Seattle. “Thanks for the interview with John McCain on my favorite subject: conservation. Now I want to email the senator and thank him, too.”

But other listeners were bothered by some of Senator McCain’s comments. Carol Greenwood, who listens to Living on Earth over the Internet, took issue with John McCain’s explanation for the League of Conservation Voters score on his environmental record.

“His response was he was graded down because LCV factors in “pro-life” positions in its scoring,” she writes. “This certainly wasn't the only anti-LCV position McCain took, and so couldn't have been considered the cause of his so-called "low" score.”

For the record, the League of Conservation Voters informs us that Senator McCain’s voting score has gone up sharply since he ran for president, and for the year 2003 he got a 53 percent rating.

And finally, a correction and a clarification concerning our recent interview on the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant. Living on Earth misstated the number of plant owners seeking permission to boost the amount of power generated by their plants.

Since 1977, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has approved 101 production increases, or uprate, applications. The increases range from less than two percent to 20 percent boosts in power output. And there are currently ten power increase applications pending before the NRC, including that of Vermont Yankee.

Also, our story suggested that plants circulate water from nearby sources such as rivers to cool spent fuel in storage. For the most part, according to Neil Sheehan of the NRC, heat exchangers keep the nuclear power plant waste cooled. He writes that, “Only a limited amount of water is added to replace that lost by evaporation. There is certainly no constant infusion of water from a nearby body of water.”

Your comments on our program are always welcome. Call our listener line anytime at 800-218-9988. That's 800-218-99-88. Or write us at 20 Holland Street, Somerville, Massachusetts 02144.

Our e-mail address is comments at loe dot org. Once again, comments at loe dot org. And you can hear our program anytime on our web site, Living on Earth dot org. That's Living on Earth dot o-r-g.

 

 

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