The cost of living near nuclear power
Financial upside: better standard of living
Let's start with the obvious question: Is it safe to live near a nuclear plant?
"Absolutely; study after study has shown this," says Miller. "The bizarre fact is, cancer rates and risks in general are lower around plants. That has nothing to do with the plant itself, but instead with the higher standard of living of the people who live and work there. They have good-paying jobs, they take care of themselves, they have the money to pay for medical care."
Von Meier begs to differ. "(Nuclear power) is obviously very dangerous, very susceptible to mistakes, and I don't believe it's necessary because I am more optimistic that renewable resources can supply a very, very high percentage of our needs."
But von Meier admits her concerns have as much to do with who's operating the plant as it does with nuclear power itself.
"I wouldn't buy a house next to a random reactor because I don't know the training and the culture of the people who operate it, which is not generally accessible," she says. "I think this issue of transparency has been a major problem."