The House and Senate Energy Appropriations Committees are beginning to work on the FY 2012 federal budget. And that means they are beginning to decide the fate of the loan guarantee program for new nuclear reactor construction. We are expecting the first vote in the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy before June 2--within the next three weeks.

As you probably know, President Obama has asked that this program be increased by $36 Billion. That's on top of the $10.2 Billion already in the program and the $8.3 already promised to Southern Company for construction of the Vogtle reactors in Georgia. Plus there is money for uranium enrichment plants in Idaho and Ohio.

Meanwhile, the world's third and fourth largest economies--Japan and Germany--are marching ahead with new energy policies that will focus on clean and safe renewable energy and energy efficiency. It's time the U.S. march ahead in that direction too. And it's time the U.S. end the nuclear loan program. This is the time to act and here are the actions to take now:

Organizations: Here is the text of an organizational sign-on letter that will be hand-delivered to the members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees. If you can sign this letter on behalf of your organization, please send your name, title (if one), organization name, city and state to Deadline is 5 pm Eastern Time, Thursday, May 19.

Individuals: Please send a letter to your members of Congress here. We know many of you have sent letters about this program in the past--do it again! We can end this misuse of taxpayer money! And please help spread the word to your friends and colleagues. (Note: if you have a problem sending your letter, wait a few minutes and try again; occasionally the servers become overloaded....let us know if you have a continuing problem).

Everyone: National Nuclear-Free Call-In Day, Wednesday, May 18. Please call your members of Congress and demand an end to the nuclear loan program. The members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees are listed below. It is especially important that these members receive your calls. You can reach every member of Congress at 202-224-3121 (and individual office numbers should show up when you send your e-mail to your members, make a note of the numbers and use them May 18!). We want every phone on Capitol Hill ringing off the hook all day May 18!

And know that the American people are with us: According to a March 2011 poll conducted for the Civil Society Institute, 73% of the American people oppose federal loan guarantees for new nuclear reactors. An April 2011 ABC News/Washington Post poll found that 64% oppose new reactor construction entirely.

With your help, we can end the nuclear loan program and begin to build a nuclear-free, carbon-free energy future.

Thanks for all you do,

Michael Mariotte
Executive Director
Nuclear Information and Resource Service