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Nuclear Energy Institute
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 15, 2008
Contact:, 202.739.8000 or 703.644.8805 (after hours and weekends)

NEI Responds to President-Elect Obama's Selection of Steven Chu as Energy Secretary

WASHINGTON, D.C.— President-elect Obama has selected Steven Chu, director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, to be Secretary of Energy.  Marvin S. Fertel, acting president and CEO at NEI, made the following statement about the nomination.

“In nominating Steven Chu to be Secretary of Energy, President-elect Obama has sent a strong message that America’s energy leadership will be entrusted to an advocate for the expanded development of carbon-neutral sources of energy. Dr. Chu recognizes the role that nuclear energy plays in reducing greenhouse gases in our electricity generation portfolio.

“In August, Dr. Chu joined his fellow directors of the DOE National Laboratories in signing an important white paper on the role of nuclear energy: A Sustainable Energy Future: The Essential Role of Nuclear Energy. Dr. Chu and his colleagues concluded that nuclear energy ‘must play a significant and growing role in our nation’s – and the world’s – energy portfolio.’ The national laboratory directors identified nuclear energy as the only existing expandable base-load electric generation technology that can provide security through reliable fuel supply and environmental stewardship by avoiding emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants.    

“Dr. Chu is an internationally renowned physicist, highlighted by his Nobel Prize in physics in 1997. He is acclaimed for his technical competence and his commitment to breakthrough energy technologies, and he has acquired a reputation for challenging scientists to find environmentally friendly energy technologies. We look forward to working with Dr. Chu and the department as America confronts unprecedented challenges in expanding its domestic energy generation in an environmentally responsible way.”