Does the United States Need Nuclear Energy?

The coverage in the "News Currents," May 22, of the House of Representatives' approval of legislation to make the licensing process for nuclear power plants more stable misses the real importance of the measure: The United States needs such an energy source to help us reduce our massive burning of fossil fuels.

Nuclear-generated electricity accounts for about 22 percent of our consumption, second only to coal. Unlike coal, it produces no acid rain, smog, or greenhouse gases. The public seems to be getting this message, with recent polls indicating that about 80 percent believe nuclear power "should" be part of our energy future. This is a far cry from the impression that antinuclear groups convey of a public opposed to all things nuclear. Diane W. Harmon, Alexandria, Va.

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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