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Climate change and the need for clean energy might revive America's nuclear industry but, will it?  High cost and the fear of terrorism are still major issues, and without Nevada's Yucca Mountain, deadly nuclear waste has no place to go. Also, President Obama's big earmark problem, and, after ten years, a United Nations campaign against drug traffic and drug abuse has gone nowhere. Will the program be resumed anyway?

Banner image: A rail tunnel descends into the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository located in Nye County, Nevada, about 100 miles northwest of Las Vegas. Photo: Maxim Kniazkov/AFP/Getty Images

Making News President Obama's Big Earmarks Problem 5 MIN, 34 SEC

During last year's campaign, Barack Obama promised to cut congressional earmarks by half.  But today he said he will sign a $410 billion-budget bill with no less than 8500 pet projects, just to keep the government going. Adriel Bettelheim is White House correspondent for CQPolitics.com.

Adriel Bettelheim, White House Correspondent, CQPolitics.com

Main Topic Climate Change and Nuclear Power 34 MIN, 10 SEC

After 20 years and $9 billion, Nevada's Yucca Mountain won't be the final resting place for 60,000 tons of deadly nuclear waste piling up at power plants all over the country. So what happens now to a nuclear industry that expected a shot in the arm from demand for “clean” energy to reduce global warming? No new plant has been licensed in the US since the Three Mile Island accident 30 years ago, but Energy Secretary Henry Chu has promised to find a way. Has Europe developed safer technologies? What about cost and weaponization?  Would nuclear power be better or worse than climate change? 

Keith Johnson, Foreign Policy magazine (@ForeignPolicy)
Victor Gilinsky, independent consultant on Yucca Mountain, State of Nevada
Per Peterson, Professor of Nuclear Engineering, University of California Berkeley
Dan Hirsch, UC Santa Cruz / Committee to Bridge the Gap (@ucsc)

Reporter's Notebook Despite Misgivings, UN Prepares to Perpetuate War on Drugs 8 MIN, 56 SEC

Ten years ago, the United Nations launched a campaign to cut both the demand and the supply of illegal drugs. A report by the executive body of the European Union concludes it has made no difference at all. Nevertheless, it's expected that the program will be resumed for another ten years. The report was delivered as the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs in Vienna prepares for a review. Luke Baker is senior correspondent for Reuters, based in London.

Luke Baker, Reuters (@LukeReuters)

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