State Senate candidate Dave Renzi today met with workers and toured an Oswego County nuclear plant that his opponent once wanted to close, and said his opponent’s spectacular flip-flop on nuclear power should raise voters’ doubts about his commitment to the future of jobs, clean energy and the region’s economy.
“Not long ago, my opponent was outspoken in his belief that nuclear energy was far too dangerous, and that Oswego County’s three nuclear plants should be closed,” said Renzi.
“But when running for Senate from the district where thousands of jobs and an important part of our regional economy relies on nuclear energy, he suddenly shifts direction, and becomes an outspoken supporter,” Renzi said. “I think the employees of these plants, their families and residents of the communities that rely on these plants for jobs and the boost they provide our economy should think twice before swallowing that story.”
Last week, during the candidates’ Town Hall debate in Oswego, Aubertine tried to explain his “ideological shift” from nuclear foe to plant backer, saying his opposition to safe, clean nuclear energy was driven by cold-war fears of a worldwide nuclear conflagration:
“When we thought of nuclear energy as kids, we thought about diving under our desks ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â¦ it instantly had negative connotations,” Aubertine said. (Oswego Town Hall debate, 10/2/08)
He said his views on nuclear power had changed “over the past decade or more.” But six years ago, when running for the Assembly district that does not include Oswego County, Aubertine said the plants should close:
“I would support a bill that would phase these plants out,” he said. “We should look at reducing our reliance on them.”
In contrast to his opponent’s shifting views, Renzi said he supports building a fourth nuclear plant, and has outlined a plan to make the region into a hub of clean energy companies and facilities, including nuclear, biofuels and hydropower to capitalize on the growing importance of alternative energy solutions to our nation’s energy crisis.