Published: November 9, 2007

Interview with Tucker Carlson

Published: November 9, 2007

November 9, 2007
with Tucker Carlson

Joining us now, Dr. Patrick Moore.
Dr. Moore, thanks for coming on.


CARLSON: Why is the co-founder of Greenpeace endorsing nuclear power of all things?

MOORE: Well, largely because it doesn`t produce any air pollution or any greenhouse gasses. In fact, we have a choice to make for the future whether, we`re going to continue building fossil fuel plants, which are dirty and produce a lot of greenhouse gas, or whether we go to cleaner technologies like nuclear.

CARLSON: Didn`t nuclear power plants kill all those people in Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

MOORE: Yes, that`s the problem. Back in the early days of Greenpeace and the environmental movement, we got a lot of things right. But I think we made one serious mistake, in that we tended to lump nuclear energy in with nuclear weapons, as if they were all part of the same Holocaust. We failed to distinguish the beneficial and peaceful uses of the technology from the destructive and even evil uses. I think we need to change our thinking on that.

CARLSON: How many Americans have been killed by nuclear power?

MOORE: In fact, not one American citizen has even been injured by the nuclear power plants in the United States. Everybody thinks of Three Mile Island as some kind of terrible disaster. It was a bad mechanical failure that cost a lot of money. But no member of the public was injured. There have been many follow up health studies on the people who lived around Three Mile Island when that accident happened, and there`s no evidence of any harm.

CARLSON: So if nuclear power doesn`t contribute to greenhouse gasses, doesn`t pollute the air — if we don`t have to buy it from the Middle East, and if it`s safe enough that no one`s been killed by it in this country, what`s the argument against it?

MOORE: I think a lot of people are kind of stuck in the `70s. Tucker, I think it was a very big movement back then. And the anti-nuclear movement included nuclear energy. I think people haven`t caught up with the fact that climate change has changed the whole climate of the environmental debate on this planet. The one technology that is contributing most to reducing greenhouse gasses in America today is nuclear energy. We could do a tremendous amount to increase that.

CARLSON: Unless you`re leaving something out, I buy what you`re saying completely. How then explain this from the Sierra Club — This is the Sierra Club`s statement on nuclear power: “We oppose the licensing, construction and operation of new nuclear reactors, utilizing the fission process, pending development of adequate national and global policies to curb energy use and unnecessary economic growth.”

They`re taking a stand against economic growth. You have to be a rich kid to do something like that. Is that the only justification? We`re just against civilization, so we`re not for nuclear power?

MOORE: There must be a lot of that in it, because they`re not only against nuclear energy. They`re also against hydro electric dams. They`re also against fossil fuel energy. If you add those three up, that`s about 99.2 percent of all the energy used in our civilization. They`re just plain against civilization.

CARLSON: Here`s a question that maybe you can answer. Why do we in the press take the Sierra Club seriously, when it`s clearly a lunatic fringe group? Why do we book interviews with them, listen to what they say? This is ludicrous.

MOORE: Well, they have done a lot of good work in wilderness conservation. But what I don`t understand is they`re worried about the air quality, say, over the Grand Canyon. That`s not being caused by nuclear power. That`s being caused by huge coal fired plants. If those were nuclear plants, the air would be clean.

CARLSON: so, the consensus has got to be changing. I have a couple of liberal friends who are for nuclear power, all of a sudden. I notice that Barack Obama seems to be open to it at least. Are there any other Democrats running for president who are for it? I know Richardson said he`s not. Hillary is kind of on the fence. Is anybody else for it?

MOORE: I don`t think anybody else is strongly for it in public. But the Democratic party voted for the Energy Act in 2005, which is clearly in support of nuclear energy. But more and more people are coming to support nuclear energy. I`m working with Christy Todd Whitman, who is the former governor of New Jersey, with the Clean and Safe Energy Coalition to try to build grass roots support among labor, business and community leaders across the country. It`s working because people understand these points.

CARLSON: Finally, Dr. Moore, has there ever been — this is a sincere question — a two-headed fish or animal produced by a nuclear power plant?

MOORE: Not that I know of.

CARLSON: OK, just checking. I watch “The Simpsons.” Dr. Moore, thanks for joining us. I appreciate it.

MOORE: Thanks, Tucker.

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