Bush Praises Rebirth of Troubled Alabama Nuclear Plant

ATHENS, Ala. (AP) - Browns Ferry once was a scary punch line of the nation's nuclear industry.

Those days seem long gone today as President Bush praised workers for bringing the plant fully on line for the first time in a generation and held out Browns Ferry as a model for a nuclear renaissance in the US.

Bush said nuclear power from Browns Ferry and elsewhere is an important part of our future as the nation pursues a comprehensive plan to reduce its dependence on oil and eliminate greenhouse gases.

It had been 22 years since all three reactors operated together by the time Unit One was restarted last month.

Still, Browns Ferry - and nuclear power in general - has critics including Sara Barczak of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. She said its ironic to see the plant with its long history of problems used as the symbol of a successful nuclear resurgence.

But TVA board member Skila Harris said the Unit One restart was the most efficient and cleanest option for meeting growing energy demand in the region.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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