Video series focuses on Power, Politics and the Grid

February 16, 2024, 12:00PMANS Nuclear Cafe


Chemist, author, nuclear energy advocate, and ANS member Meredith Angwin recently reached out to David Blackmon about Juice: Power, Politics and the Grid, a series of five short videos that she calls “a splendid resource for people who want to know about the electric grid.” Blackmon, a writer and 40-year veteran of the energy industry who is a fan of both Angwin and the video shorts, reposted her review on his Substack, “Energy Transition Absurdities.”

The videos, produced by Austin, Texas–based filmmakers Robert Bryce and Tyson Culver, feature interviews with Angwin and others as they “expose the perils facing our electric grid [and show] how we can improve the reliability of our most important energy network and address climate change by embracing nuclear energy.”

What is the public perception of the U.S. electricity grid?

May 9, 2023, 3:00PMNuclear NewsMeredith Angwin

Meredith Angwin

When my book Shorting the Grid was published in 2020, many described it as “alarmist.” Most people in the United States took grid reliability for granted. Sure, there were always power outages during storms, but weird things like “rolling blackouts” only happened in California.

Public perception is changing, however. Part of this change is due to the major February 2021 blackout in Texas, as well as the grid emergencies during December 2022. People became aware that their own grid could have problems, and not just the usual power-line-fails-in-a-snowstorm type of problems. For example, last December, the service areas for Duke Energy and the Tennessee Valley Authority in the southeastern U.S. experienced rolling blackouts. Grid operators had to take emergency measures. The Midwest, Texas, and New England experienced near misses with grid trouble. In other words, most of the country was at risk of rolling blackouts due to one relatively short winter storm.

Farmers, City Folk, and Renewable Energy

May 28, 2013, 6:00AMANS Nuclear CafeMeredith Angwin

viewfromVermontCity people sometimes move to a farming community and then are somewhat shocked that the beautiful fields are actually not just for looking at and painting. A farmer's fields are a sort of factory. The fields produce stuff. They take inputs of raw materials, such as seeds, fertilizer, water, pesticides, and so forth. With these inputs, they produce food. Some farms are organic, and they use non-chemical fertilizer and more "natural" methods of pest control, but the goal is the same. A farmer's fields are supposed to produce food. That's the goal of farming.

Framing the Discourse

March 26, 2013, 6:00AMANS Nuclear CafeMeredith Angwin

viewfromVermontI have been thinking lately about "framing the discourse" on nuclear energy. Framing is the way that people use words and concepts to present their points of view in an understandable and appealing way to other people. I think that pro-nuclear people are often bad at this. We figure that "the truth will set you free," and then we don't spend very much time on how to frame the truth.

Pro-Nuclear Activism: Something for Everyone

September 26, 2012, 6:00AMANS Nuclear CafeMeredith Angwin

A few days ago, the Connecticut Section of the American Nuclear Society invited Howard Shaffer and me to give a talk on "Pro-Nuclear Activism." Well, it is true, we have been very actively pro-nuclear in Vermont. So, armed with our recent experiences, our presentation was an effort to convey "lessons-learned," or perhaps "best-practices" of pro-nuclear activism.

NRC Public Meeting in Brattleboro: The Politics of Intimidation

May 29, 2012, 6:00AMANS Nuclear CafeMeredith Angwin

A recent public meeting held by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) turned out to be a horrific way for a nuclear supporter to spend an evening. The NRC held the meeting to report its annual review of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant's performance. The plant received the highest safety ratings, but that was not the focus of the May 23 meeting in Brattleboro, Vt.-to put it mildly.