In a recent IR article where Senator Tester discussed wildfire costs, he reportedly said: "This is exactly why we've got to do something about Climate Change." Too bad he and Montana's other politicians don't take Climate Change seriously and actually DO something about it. Ironically, Tester has been made fully aware that it is technically feasible, right now, today, to safely generate vast amounts of electricity without carbon emissions; so have Bullock, Daines and Gianforte.

Canadians, in Ontario, plan to do just that by reducing carbon emissions 37 percent within the next 20 years. How? With a fleet of super-safe Small Modular Reactors (SMR) to replace aging coal-fired power plants. We could do the same, using GE-Hitachi's PRISM technology to replace the coal-fired boilers at Colstrip 1&2.

PRISM is a SMR that can be powered by so-called "spent" fuel from nuclear power plants around the country, destroying 95 percent of it in the process. The remaining 5 percent will be made far easier and less costly to dispose of than the original spent fuel. So, PRISM is truly a waste-to-clean-energy solution just waiting to be implemented.

Imagine what we could do with a nearly inexhaustible supply of emissions-free electricity. Within 50 years we could be heating and air conditioning all our homes and businesses, powering all our cars, running our factories and doing a host of other things that today involve the burning of fossil fuels. No more poor air quality days in Helena during inversions, no more smog in big cities, fewer and smaller wildfires, fewer and less costly storms and droughts; the list is endless...

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So, a much cleaner and better future is possible for our children and grandchildren if our generation will take Climate Change seriously and actually do something to slow or perhaps even halt its progress. Real "leadership" from Montana's congressional delegation could begin to make this happen. Now, let's see if that leadership exists.

Bob Balhiser



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