Need for Community Input on University Nuclear Microreactor

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This year, the University of Illinois plans to bring a nuclear microreactor on campus for power generation in order to meet its carbon reduction goals.There was one informational virtual townhall held by the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and the Environment on September 10, followed  within days by the University's announcement that it was going through with the project beginning in 2021. Anyone who cares about the environment should be alarmed by the University's lack of community involvement and deliberation in this decision. Nuclear power is neither clean, safe, nor cheap. It is not a form of renewable energy. It is trading one type of potential environmental disaster for another.

The University community and surrounding communities have not been actively engaged in this decision. As this potentially affects all community members and their descendants' health and well being, consent should not be presumed.The University should not continue with this goal until 1) a meaningful plan for community engagement has been developed and carried out, and then 2) the community has given informed consent to the University to proceed with the project.