By Arthur Rizer* –
For years, many have argued that the United States’ addiction to oil is one of its greatest national security threats. This article explores the national security implications of energy dependence from both an environmental and a foreign threat perspective. It argues that a nuclear renaissance would greatly improve the United States’ national security. Nuclear energy is a viable, logical alternative to oil. Moreover, the drawbacks of nuclear energy are far outweighed by the benefits and will become even less consequential with time. The article concludes by exploring the United States’ energy policy decision-making process and suggesting ways the process could be changed to spur a nuclear renaissance.
* Arthur Rizer is a prosecutor with the United States Department of Justice, Criminal Division. Mr. Rizer is also an Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University’s Law Center. The views expressed in this article are his own and do not represent the views of the Department of Justice or Georgetown’s Law Center. The author would like to thank his family for their support in his career and Judge James Baker, United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces and David Jones, General Counsel for the National Nuclear Security Administration, for their encouragment to write on this subject. The author would also like to thank editors Jonathan Abrams, Stephen Pezzi, and Mat Trachok, and their staff at the Harvard National Security Journal for their work on this article.
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