Nuclear Energy Tries To Weather Storm Of Japan Radiation Leak

By Jeff Neumeyer

March 15, 2011 Updated Mar 15, 2011 at 5:55 PM EDT

INDIANA, (Indiana's NewsCenter) --- The growing nuclear threat in Japan raises the question of whether it’s time for the rest of the world to pull back from pursuit of more nuclear energy.

There are no nuclear power plants in Indiana, but Indiana-Michigan Power does get nuclear energy from the Cook Nuclear Plant in Southwest Michigan, which generates more than one-third of the utility's electricity needs.

Published reports indicate unit one at the Cook plant was powered down briefly over the weekend so crews could work on a gradually increasing leak of hydrogen in a main generator.

I & M insists it has never posed any danger to public safety.

Switzerland for now is putting a freeze on construction of new nuclear plants.

Germany is also suddenly turning cool toward that industry.

But the White House, which is offering nuclear companies financial backing, says it remains a part of the President's overall energy plan.

YaVonda Ulfig/Indiana-Michigan Power: " The Obama Administration indicates that it plans to stand behind nuclear power, which was very encouraging and I think that, combined with the fact that we're not seeing a lot of rash decisions on the part of policy makers, really speaks to the fact that a lot of people are recognizing the value that nuclear energy does have."

Current events are bound to hurt the nuclear cause to some degree.

But Ulfig says public opinion should not be set in stone until more details become available about what really went wrong in the Japan nuclear crisis.

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