There really is a near-term solution to Climate Change, and for those who believe Climate Change is a hoax there is no point reading any further.

Advanced nuclear reactors like GE-Hitachi's PRISM Reactor could curb Climate Change within the next 30 years if the fossil fuel lobby that controls this aspect of our government (the Department of Energy, or DOE) can somehow be pushed out of the way.

As long ago as 1994, PRISM Reactors proved that they can safely convert nuclear waste (spent nuclear fuel) into vast amounts of clean, carbon-free electricity and destroy 95% of the waste while doing so. By 1994 billions of tax dollars had already been spent proving that PRISM technology works at a small (24 Megawatt) scale. Now we need to demonstrate that it works equally well at the commercial scale (625 Megawatts). Colstrip Units 1&2, soon scheduled for shut down, would be an ideal place to show that PRISM technology can live up to its promise.

Governor Bullock, Senators Tester and Daines and Congressman Gianforte could create an amazing legacy for themselves, for Colstrip, and the State of Montana if only they would work together in a bi-partisan way to successfully promote a PRISM Demonstration reactor to replace the coal-fired boilers at Colstrip 1&2. A project of this nature would also provide a solid long-term future for Colstrip by offering residents and their children good, long-term, hi-tech clean energy jobs.

If we wait for DOE to go through all its ridiculous, mind-numbing hoops and hurdles there will not be a PRISM demonstration reactor in the United States until at least 2035. However, if the Trump administration could cut the red tape and work with Montana politicians and NorthWestern Energy there could be a PRISM reactor operating at Colstrip by 2025.

Seriously, there is a near-term solution to Climate Change; it is a combination of wind, solar, and advanced reactors like PRISM. Do we have what it takes to fight fossil fuel lobby to make it happen? For the sake of our children and grandchildren, I certainly hope so.

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Bob Balhiser



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