Friday, June 21, 2019

Going Nuclear

My father was a big fan of nuclear power plants, after retirement he accumulated a portfolio of stock in electric utility companies to collect the dividends on.  Nukes generally paid, better, when things are good the profit margin is higher.  When things are bad, they can get very bad.  Later in life, he unloaded most of the nuke stocks, the risks started to worry him.  

I am sure I am not the only person who did so, but I made money on Three Mile Island, or rather my self-directed retirement plan did.  I didn't own the stock when things "melted down," thankfully, or I would have lost a lot.  The stock dropped precipitously, and was considered radioactive. I watched it and read the news reports. When it looked like General Public Utilities might survive bankruptcy, I had my retirement plan buy 400 shares, at $2 each.  My broker said, you are throwing away $800, there is no guarantee.  I took the risk.  Months later they emerged from bankruptcy without wiping out the shareholders.  A few months later the company resumed paying dividends, and the stock went up in value. Later on GPU was acquired, I ended up with cash and stock in the company that bought them.  I still have it.   That $800 risk, ended up being worth about 20 times that, and it has paid dividends for decades. 

I no longer believe nuclear power is the future.  64 years after we unleashed the nuclear jenie for power generation, we have not figured out how to put it back in the bottle, how to deal with the waste left behind.  Eventually the cost and danger will outweigh the value of the energy.   

What is the future of energy? 


  1. Who knows. but I can barley remember that big melt down day. I was very young and we were packed and ready to go.

  2. We have heaps of sunshine here; I vote for solar.