Paris Ortiz-Wines didn’t plan to be a nuclear advocate when she graduated from the University of California-Santa Cruz a few years ago. In this episode, the 28-year-old native of California explains how she became the head of a non-profit that advocates for nuclear energy all over the world, why millennials are more open to nuclear, why California’s politicians decided to keep Diablo Canyon open, and which countries are likely to build new nuclear reactors over the next few years. (Recorded May 8, 2023.)
Robert Bryce 0:04
Hi, everyone, welcome to the power hungry Podcast. I’m Robert Bryce. This podcast we talk about energy, power, innovation and politics. And I’m pleased to welcome Paris Ortiz whines. She is the Global Director of stand up for nuclear Paris. Welcome to the power hungry podcast.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 0:18
Thanks for having me about it. Very excited.
Robert Bryce 0:21
Now, I didn’t warn you. We talked about a couple of things. But guests on this podcast introduce themselves. And I know you’ve had some of your colleagues and friends on the podcast, Mark Nelson, Emmett, Penny, Matty Healy, among them. So imagine you’ve arrived somewhere you have about 60 seconds to introduce yourself, no one there knows who you are. Please tell us tell us who you are.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 0:39
Wonderful. So as you said, Paris, Sardis wines. I’m a global organizer that does the grassroots advocacy for pro nuclear for the pro nuclear movement. And we work on advocating for the protection and expansion of nuclear energy around the world. So I work with advocates in many countries, working from those that don’t even have nuclear plants to those that maybe would like to save them. And it is a funny place. I find myself in this career because I studied environmental studies had no energy or engineering background, it wasn’t exposed to nuclear energy. And now I found myself advocating for this technology for the last five years.
Robert Bryce 1:18
Well, so how did you get there, then? I’m just curious, because I don’t I’ve followed your work for some time, as I said, we have many mutual friends and acquaintances. But how did you get here? I mean, if you don’t mind, so you’re just you don’t mind me asking? How old are you? How would you say you’ve been doing this for you’ve started five years ago on this? How did you get here?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 1:38
Yeah, so I am 28. So once I went, I attended the University of Santa Cruz, I did environmental studies there. I did not focus in any particular section of that degree and thought that if I just came to the Bay Area, I would find my niche, I would find an organization that had a great purpose. So in fact, I applied to the Sierra Club, the NRDC, Earth justice, legal, like I applied to all the standard, what I thought was environmental, what is it an environmental organization. But luckily, I did get my first big girl job with at a nonprofit called environmental, environmental progress. And that was led by Michael Shellenberger. So as maybe as many of your listeners now, he was one of the first people in the US that was pronuclear. He came from the left, he had done the work that I would identify with. So I watched his TED Talk as part of the interview process and why he changed his mind. And because I don’t have any baggage, I’m, I didn’t even know we had a nuclear plant. I, I had no association with any of the Cold War apocalyptic weapons thing. So for me, I was instantly hooked. So I got my start with Michael worked there for two years, and then I branched off to do stand up for nuclear full time.
Robert Bryce 2:59
And stand up for nuclear is a nonprofit, is that right? It’s it
Paris Ortiz-Wines 3:03
right now. It’s a fiscal sponsor. EAN is in its process of becoming an official nonprofit.
Robert Bryce 3:08
And tell me about your budget. How much are you? What did you what how much are you spending per year roughly?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 3:12
That’s a good question. So we have some donors from Patreon. So some of our actions can vary from, it’s just me giving my time whether it’s like a phone baking action, and I’m organizing, I’m doing all the templates, or on the other end, where we do international events, like the one in Berlin, in Germany, and those can range from a couple 100 to a couple 1000, depending on how big we’d like to go. And unfortunately, because our budget isn’t as big, we’re not able to do as many big events, but we’re able to slowly piece out some aid when we can. So I would say a couple 1000 is our operating budget at the moment because a lot of people volunteer their time. And what I can do is volunteer my time as a person.
Robert Bryce 3:55
But on an annualized basis, then can you give me an idea about that what you’re spending on an annual basis because you mentioned Sierra Club NRDC, and I’m very I’m very interested in the money issues because these are massive organizations Sierra Club’s couple 100 million dollars, famously anti nuclear in our DC, again, famously anti nuclear, you’re nowhere near that size, but are less than 100,000. A couple 100,000 a year, is that what it would?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 4:17
Oh, nowhere near so we if we’re looking at just if we’re doing our our events and actions, I would say maybe 2530. Right.
Robert Bryce 4:29
But you’re but you’re making but you’re being paid or you’re the global director, so I’m assuming you’re being compensated some way I’m not. Don’t spend too much time on this, but yeah, okay. So, just in your history, though, you put it this way, the accidental nuke accidental pro nuclear activist is that I don’t mean to demean it or anything, but that sounds if I’m reading it back to you. That’s what it sounds like.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 4:51
Yes. I didn’t foresee myself going into anything with energy. I thought that was something to be honest, I thought that was Something that was too complex and too over my head that I wouldn’t go into energy that there were other sectors of the environmental space that I would be able to succeed in, I didn’t think because of my background that I should go into that and energy. And so when I came across nuclear energy with this nonprofit, uh, for me, it was, this is the one thing I can advocate for this is my hope, this is the one thing that I can really push and actually make a difference instead of all the little things that I that I continue to do, but don’t really add up to a lot at the end of the day.
Robert Bryce 5:33
So you mentioned those other groups. I mean, so how is your view on environmental ism changed? I mean, you know, you, you’re from Santa Barbara, and a very famously democratic state, you get to use UC Santa Cruz, which is famously liberal University. The mascot is the banana slug, if I’m remembering correctly, correctly, that this is the, the well, I don’t like to use the term green anymore. The but it is the environmentalism, you know, epicenter, right. In terms of California. How do you view mainstream environmentalism now? I mean, how does that change? How has that changed? Since you graduated from college six years ago? How does that what did you how did your worldview changed?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 6:15
Yeah, back in college, I subscribe to the notion that small is beautiful, and that, for us to re harmonize with nature and to redeem ourselves and to mitigate climate change, we were going to need a massive cultural shift. And that would mean
Robert Bryce 6:32
going back to the land, the whole we are 40 acres in the mule and organic farming, and then like that, you’re saying,
Paris Ortiz-Wines 6:39
like live a little smaller us, you know, I and I, when I think back on it, it was a romantic notion. And I, I was just, uh, you know, all these little things that would add up is like, turn off the water, like, when you brush your teeth, turn off the water, then we’re going to recycle, and then I’m going to be vegan, and then I could do all these individualistic things. And then I’m going to make everybody else do it as well. And we’re all going to be back to like, a co op kind of setting a little bit, and we’re gonna do a circular economy. But I don’t know how it’s powered because
Robert Bryce 7:09
there was there a VW bus in this. It sounds joking, but it sounds. I mean, it’s almost cliche. Now, when you’re, when you’re recounting this, I mean, to me, I’m, you know, significantly older than you are. But as I listened to you, they, I mean, it’s almost, I’m not gonna say funny, but I mean, it’s stereotypical is that?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 7:28
Yeah, that’s, it is, and I, but I will say that there was underneath that was just a sadness and a fear of what was to come, I didn’t know what what the world was going to look like, because you see those beautiful documentaries of where they go to sea where the ice caps are melting, and then they show, you know, certain animal population that’s dying, and you’re just like, what are we doing it deep sense of just regret, and feeling that humans are parasites, and with nuclear I, and I, of course, with with Michael’s thinking, and of course, the co workers that I was surrounded by, they were able to offer me a different vision of what that could be like, and to also remind us that I think we get a little spoiled living in such, first of all, living in such a beautiful, rich country. And then we living in California, which is one of the best states, personally, and then it listed for looking economically, we’re one of the largest. And we, I, I believe we forget what it’s like to not have basic needs, and like others, you know, maybe living in different countries. So that to say, they were able to remind me that humans are pretty cool. And then we’ve done a really great progress as far as human flourishing. And then now, we have had success stories of you know, when we’ve seen where we believe we’re reaching a tipping point and a fishery, and then we conserve, and then we bring it back. So I was able to have a more positive outlook. It gave me a positive vision, and how to get there.
Robert Bryce 9:08
You know, that’s it. So you’ve had a conversion story. I mean, it’s, it’s interesting. And, you know, a long time ago, I’ve written for seminars, in Catholic terms, there’s Oh, converts are the worst kinds. But this idea of going, you said, the feeling that humans are parasites, so there’s different worldview. I think that’s really, I mean, it’s kind of beautiful in a certain way. But let’s let’s move past that, because I want to talk about there’s a lot of things to talk about. But since I didn’t know your own story, I think it’s really relevant to why you care, right? That this is now you. You had a conversion, and now you’ve gotten that conversion has given you motivation. Is that fair to say? Yes. Yes. So tell me about what happened on Earth Day in San Francisco. Stand up for nuclear as I understand it had some conflict with the organizers there. What happened?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 9:54
Yeah, and so to give background right, Earth Day was started in Santa Barbara, I’ve grown up going to Earth days I thought there were such a cool festival where there’s new ideas you can get, you know your bamboo forks and knives and you can see the new solar panel that they’re releasing. So for me, I was like
Robert Bryce 10:16
Paris Ortiz-Wines 10:18
And so and then stickers and face tattoos, so the vibe is there, we wanted to go to Earth Day. So background story on the initiative that we’ve started in San Francisco, we have a great core active group of advocates that fought for Diablo Canyon and continue to fight for more nuclear. Last year, we did attend under our friends banner, say clean energy isotopes organization, because standard for nuclear was denied. They said our name was too controversial. So we went last year had a great time. Great conversations. So this year, we applied under the same name with the same initiative, same people. And unfortunately, after weeks of our application being accepted, and our fee had been paid, they give me a call saying hey, actually, we believe as the organizers of SFR day we do not want nuclear energy to be representative. It’s too controversial. And more alongside the waist issue. And keep in mind, these individuals are I believe in the boomer generation, predominantly, demographic is white. So I was a bit frustrated. And so we did give them opportunity. We sent them an email saying we’d love to chat with us for you to explain your views to explain what the hangups are and why you don’t want nuclear there. No response. So we decided we were going to put this story out to journalists who’d like to pick it up, and then we were still gonna go to Earth Day. So basically, we went broke the good vibes, we’re playing dosha, cat and ABA and we were dancing, we had stickers, and we set up right in front of SF earthday. And so whenever
Robert Bryce 12:00
you crashed SF birthday, you’re the wedding craft, wedding crashing to Earth Day,
Paris Ortiz-Wines 12:07
we were crashing to support and say that we support you, but nuclear needs to be included. So we sat we posted up right up front. So everybody that passed to go into the event had to see us. Uh huh. So actually, some people do come up to us saying, Actually, I saw your article, I saw that you were disinvited. I’m so glad that you came, I actually came to see you guys. I had seen the article about Earth Day when they were researching it. And we had two TV news stations come up to us, intrigued by our signs intrigued by the pro nuclear stickers, and we were able to get on the local five o’clock news, talking about nuclear
Robert Bryce 12:49
energy. So being denied was actually in some ways it was kind of some jujitsu here that made it even better for you then and had you been accepted. And then their their objection was over the nuclear waste issue. That was their claim that that was the problem. No, I they couldn’t allow you in?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 13:04
Yeah. So when the journalist reached out to them for a comment when they were writing the story, it was more alongside Oh, what about the ways what about, you know, the accidents, the classic hang ups for people, specifically that generation. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to chat with them. But we did get to chat with one of the staff members of the committee that was running the event. And he actually had protested Diablo Canyon and came up to us and said, I’ve actually changed my mind. I don’t think that was a good idea. I’m pretty open to it. And he was one of the original advocate, I would say that advocates activist against Diablo Canyon, and I got that he chatted with us for a bit.
Robert Bryce 13:46
So that’s one of the questions I have here. But it was I was gonna ask it later. But you said that it was these the organizers were older. You said they’re boomers. Okay. Well, I’m I’m a boomer. Right. I was born in 1960. What is the generational differences? Something I asked Mattie hilly, and I think is quite interesting in terms of the depth the change in I’ll say your generation. So are you a millennial? Gen Z, I get online
Paris Ortiz-Wines 14:12
and Millennial. Yeah, so Maddie are millennials? Okay,
Robert Bryce 14:15
so what does it how to millennials? What is the difference between how millennials view nuclear energy compared to Baby Boomers?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 14:23
So, in my experience, my generation has no concept of nuclear energy. It’s neither good nor bad. It is just mutual and if they have heard of nuclear energy, I think the third word association like many is weapons or bomb that’s that was our association. I didn’t even know we had a nuclear plant in California until I started working with Michael I didn’t even know nuclear energy produce electricity. It just didn’t come up. It just wasn’t something you talked about. So in my experience, many millennials have no baggage. They A their biggest fear is climate change. Right. And back in the day with the previous generation, you know, for them nuclear had been this beautiful promise earlier. And then there was this counter push against weapons. You know, the accidents happened, the environmental movement was happening at that same time. So they were just fed a lot of images and created this collective, I would say experience about nuclear energy, and it wasn’t great. And to be honest, I think I would be anti nuclear if I had been born back in that generation. Because I, I, I would have subscribed to I’m an environmentalist, and that’s bad. That’s we don’t know what’s going to happen. Why are we creating this waste radiation is this scary, invisible thing that could cause me cancer? So for them, Fear induced around nuclear energy view? Millennials, there’s nothing, it’s neutral.
Robert Bryce 16:00
It’s interesting. I think that the no baggage is I think that’s part of it. Because when I was in grade school, high school, there were fallout shelters. I mean, bombshell people had bomb shelters. I mean, this was the thing when I was a kid. And that fear of nuclear war, nuclear annihilation was very much part of the consciousness. And so I liked that idea that millennials have Have you said, I have no baggage. But let’s jump back from Okay, so we’ve talked about Earth ASF, and how actually, it was good for you. But bring us up to speed on I’ve been watching the nuclear sector for a while I’ve been adamantly pro nuclear, you know, for doesn’t feel 13 years now in India, natural gas to nuclear, this has been my thing for a long time. Bring us up to speed now in where you were in you were in Berlin, in Germany, in April, and this was protesting the imminent shutdown of nuclear the last three nuclear reactors in Germany. But those reactors closed. Tell me, tell me what your demonstration was about. And then I guess the other question is, will those reactors possible Germany will bring those reactors back online?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 17:04
Yeah. So yeah, on April 15, three reactors, the last of the German were closed down. So there is a group of organizations in Europe that have been fighting for the past five plus years before even my time. So the local group that we partnered with is nuclear Arya. And there are a group of Germans that have been protesting all of these closures. And I’ve had some effective actions and events. In this event, we wanted to not have a memorial or funeral because obviously, it is sad that we are losing these reactors. But like you mentioned, there is a possibility that they can be turned back on, physically. And as far as regulation goes. So our demonstration was more of a celebration of thinking of the reactors, and to also make a stance that we don’t want them to close, we aren’t celebrating this closure. And to put in perspective, we were on the Brandenburg Gate on one side. And the other side, there was a classic Environmental group Greenpeace setting up their nonsense art visual fearmongering, with yellow, radioactive waste barrels with a dead dinosaur. And they were celebrating, but you could visibly see the stark difference, since all of the individuals on the Greenpeace side were 50 and older. And all the individuals on our side were from different countries and all younger, I would say all under the age of 65. Majority.
Robert Bryce 18:38
So that’s, that’s interesting. So you’re saying you said that the people in your group were mainly 20s 30s? You said, I’m just want to make sure that Yeah,
Paris Ortiz-Wines 18:46
so we’re looking at we had one of our youngest one from the demonstration that spoke was a 14 year old. One of our oldest members is 65 plus, but our range is between late 20s to late 35. Right at that range. Well, and it’s
Robert Bryce 19:02
interesting, too, because I you know, follow the money. This is the oldest axiom and one of the oldest axioms in politics, at least since Watergate. Right? Greenpeace is a huge organization, budget of international budget, $300 million. And here you’re working on a shoestring and a lot of volunteers coming. And I’m just looking at your website here. So stand up for nuclear your affiliate organizations. Canada, Philippines, Italy, Slovenia, Sweden, France, Estonia, Poland, Denmark, South Korea, Norway, Indonesia, Taiwan, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa, Belgium, Ireland. There is a large group of constituents and a lot of people, they’re just motivated, right? This isn’t some, you know, check writing effort and a lot of fundraising around this. But it seems that the motivation is one that comes from a, as you say, more forward looking and even Well, there was a quote from you, and I’m gonna return to this generational thing because I think invest is one of the key. The key strengths, I think of the pronuclear movement is that it is being led by people who are younger. And that is there’s a more, I think, durable passion there. You said no longer is nuclear seen as a costly liability, liability, but rather as a multi generational asset essential to achieving a resilient energy system. And I like this idea of multi generational asset because it’s, it’s about something that a durable, and Maddy Healy talks about this as well as a this is this is these are investments that will last for decades or even century potentially, and that that’s a very forward looking very positive kind of outlook as opposed to the gloom and doom of the anti nuclear crowd. Does that? Does that what I’m saying there? Does that make sense to you? Or how do you think about this?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 20:50
Yeah. Yeah, when I was writing that piece, when I wrote that sentence, I, it just felt so true to me. Because if I’m to look at how we’re going to do a clean energy, just transition where it’s affordable, and it’s bringing everybody in, it believes no one out. And if we’re just looking at a standpoint of sustainability, why aren’t we making things are built to last. And so you don’t have to replace them as often we want to build things that we can be using for multi generations. And if we look at solar and wind, that won’t be happening. And not to say that you can’t do them, only to say, you know, a lot of people are like, we can’t do nuclear, because it’s taking away from solar and wind, when none of us are saying that when you can do both. But I’m if we’re looking at a standpoint, I want, you pay for what you get. And I’d like to have something that lasts.
Robert Bryce 21:45
You know that that rhymes with me as well. Because in Puerto Rico, we went after Hurricane Maria and the solar plants, we went to one on one building, and all of the solar panels were just ripped off the roof of this and they were stacked inside because they’d been blown off the roof or they took them down because they’d been damaged. And so and these wind projects are a lot of them are having to be repowered the Turbans are falling. You know, they’re they’re aging out, they’re having to be landfilled and batteries is the other part of this, what are you going to do with all these lithium ion batteries, which is, you know, this is a waste issue that’s not being thought about in terms of this durability issue. So, but that I want to return to this idea about you, you went from kind of this idea of humans of parasites to a much more pro human, pro nuclear standpoint. And I think that that match of those two to me is intriguing. And one of the most interesting parts of this new generational shift is that is that a commonality among all these groups is more of a pro human kind of look at where we’re going.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 22:48
I would say it’s a mixed view, I would find that some younger individuals, I would say maybe Gen Z years. I don’t think they are on the same train that arrived and we’re humans are good. I think they’re still stuck in, you know, climate change is happening or not acting fast enough. And humans are being selfish, and we’re not doing enough. And, and I understand that point of view. They’re not they’re not to where I’m at yet. They haven’t gone through that evolutionary and I think the older generation, some of the older generation are like, we just have too many people, you know, and we just
Robert Bryce 23:26
the Malthusian ends. Yeah. And
Paris Ortiz-Wines 23:29
I think once you get our energy levels to where we need, then we can do efficiency, and then we can figure out how to best use all of our resources. But we’re not even, you know, nearly 700 million people still don’t have access to electric electricity, right? I don’t even know how we’re talking about that. Yeah. And you live in a rich society. So like, don’t be pushing your stuff on others. So I, I’m on the pro human, I’m on. And I think I like the globalization. And I know that there’s downsides. But there has been a lot of upsides as well, the connectivity that we’ve been able to have with all of these people that live in different countries, I think is beneficial not only for my soul, but also for our countries and our future humanity what that looks like.
Robert Bryce 24:19
So let’s talk about the global vision then for nuclear and global situation in terms of the progress for nuclear. You were in Germany, and I you know, I did a short video on it. It’s just the closure of those nuclear plants to me is just staggeringly stupid. I mean, what is Germany thinking? I mean, where’s your strategic sensibility now, particularly given the Russian invasion of Ukraine, etc. But here’s the question. So which countries do you think are handicap it for me? Which countries do you think are the ones that are going to build new nuclear reactors the soonest?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 24:51
Yeah, so. UK has done a really good job with Hinkley Point C. They recently just classified nuclear as green in their tax tsunami. So for them, they’re going to continue doing nuclear. I think the government is backing that. And as we know, you can’t be happen with nuclear, you need to be fully 100% committed, and government helped us help. So the UK is doing really good, Poland’s look in like, I mean, Poland’s excited, they’re one of their, I believe the top coal country right next to Germany. And they are in a deal with us with Westinghouse to build some ap 1000s. And they just released an image of what the possible new ap 1000 might look like today on Twitter. So for them, they’re excited. They want energy. So I think for the big reactors that are going to be financed from the US Poland’s looking great. Then we’re looking at Canada G Tachi. We’re looking at small reactors. I mean, they’ve already broken ground, I believe they are continuing to maintain their fleet, so they’re doing good. Argentina is hoping to get financing from China for their long one that’s been, I would say, two plus years delayed because of economic hardship and financial hardship. The UAE is signing new contracts with other countries to possibly build more nuclear and as we know, they they’re a great success story. Of course, there’s other factors that go into why the UAE has succeeded. Or reactors 25% of their electricity, on budget on time, like chef’s kiss, like they’ve done it, they did get
Robert Bryce 26:33
like that chef’s kiss. And that’s the baraka nuclear plant, which is now one of the largest in the world, built by the South Koreans SK power if I’m remembering right, and that is four gigawatts, something like that. Is that correct? Okay. So I’m sorry to interrupt. So Canada, Argentina, UAE, Poland, UK, keep going.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 26:53
Then we have Philippines last year, they included nuclear energy in their energy portfolio. Looking forward. What are the options right now and talks about bringing the baton nuclear plant online? You know, it was never on it never came online. It was mothballed. So that’s one of the possibilities, you know, Indonesia has just included nuclear energy in their energy portfolio. Then we’re looking at a Estonia they Fermi energy as doing great work. G Tachi would be the choice for them. So I think they would be another country deploying that SMR. And as we know, G Tachi. It’s it’s technology. It’s a bit proven more so than other designs that we’re seeing.
Robert Bryce 27:35
And this the BSR 300, which is the same one that is being deployed now in Canada at the Darlington, is that right? Okay, right. So 300 megawatt reactor will. So what this is we’re talking about 300 megawatt reactors. We also had just in the last few days, Westinghouse announced ap 300, which is a shrunk down version of the AP 1000. You mentioned that do any of these reactor designs? I mean, if you’re looking at them from a deployment standpoint, or you know, is there a chemistry that you like better than another? Do you think the lightwater designs are going to be more likely to succeed than, like x energy and the gas cooled design? You have a hint, can you handicap that for me?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 28:16
So when I got into this space, you know, I had to learn what a nuclear reactor was the different types and what was working. And for me, I just take it from an outsider perspective, looking at what do countries have now, what has been working? Have they tried, the advanced reactors in the US did a lot of trials with different types of reactors, but because of economics and other factors, they decided to go with the big ones. And so for me, I’m for any of them that are breaking ground and getting built on time, on budget, and you know, what I’m find, if it’s the first of its design, there will be some hiccups. I understand that I just, I’m a little hesitant on the pressure in the hyperness around these advanced reactors, because it really bothered me that many of them their pitch is it’s better than old ones, it’s going to be safer. It’s gonna be cheaper, when you haven’t even built it. Okay, so I Mike, if I can see it with my own eyes, and it’s doing it for you, I will be your biggest advocate. So, for looking at the global scene, I really liked G tattoos again, 300 I’m really excited that Westinghouse has come out with a small one to 300 because it shows commitment they’re interested in they’re gonna go for nuclear, and that’s what we need. And I think looking at the advanced pathway in the United States, you know, new scales up at the top, but then we have Kairos Oklo took a hit a bit. So um, for them, I just talked with some reservation. I’m I want them to break ground and actually get their license. And then I’m for you. But
Robert Bryce 30:05
so well, that’s interesting, because you brought it back to the US. And that was one of the questions I wanted to put to you as well. So does nuclear, then. Mark Nelson put it this way, I think it’s pretty, pretty accurate that we don’t in the US, we have cheap gas, we have cheap not gas. So we don’t need nuclear, like Poland needs net gas, or that Poland needs nuclear other countries need it more than the US needs it. So the question is, Will nuclear have to small modular reactors in particular? Will will they have to succeed overseas before they succeed in the US?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 30:39
Good question. When I was in a hearing, I was attending a hearing for advanced reactors to be allowed in California a couple of weeks ago, one of the representatives asked as any Are any of the advanced reactors built here in the US? Can you show me what you when that has been built? You know, if we’re going to be talking about California deploying, what does that look like? I would hope that it doesn’t take for us to build overseas for us to do it at home. However, we know that FOMO is really motivating for people and for the US. And for maybe those that are a little bit more nationalistic, if others see a successful project in different country, Americans are going to want to hear back at home. And I think there’s a lot of pressure on the project that will be built here in the US, we promise that these things are going to deliver and they’re gonna be better.
Robert Bryce 31:34
Right? So FOMO fear of missing out right? Yes. Not to be confused with fo AK first of a kind. But so with first of a kind, let’s talk about the AP 1000. And vogl. It’s great news that Vogel three came online, right, it is now producing power on the grid, that massive cost overruns massive massively over time in terms of how you know how long it was expected to take to build it and how long it actually took vocal for I think is beginning hot fueling now. And so that likely will come on, I think, by the end of the year, or maybe early 2024. So these are, you know, these are positive moves. But is it? Well, let me switch because I think that talking about these future reactors is one thing. Let’s talk about the existing reactors, big babies. Let’s talk about the well, okay, well, before we go there, so what are the biggest hurdles in the US? I see three and I put them in, in our see the regulatory issues. Second is the supply chain. And then third is the fuel. Right? Where are you going to get the halo? For instance? If you handicap that, for me, that is my assessment. Does that ring true to you in terms of what are the big obstacles in the US?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 32:48
Yes. And, you know, back when Maddie and Mark, right, were working together, when I was getting excited about nuclear like, Okay, well, why aren’t we building these? Like, what this is really cool, like, maybe the conservative states are building them, you know, maybe if it’s not in California. And, you know, as we were learning together, and they were saying, you know, we we have lost a lot of the manufacturing capabilities, not only here, but other things. And that has brought benefits in some and I think now we’re looking that we do need to bring them back. So what you just said those three factors, I would say are the biggest hurdles. And I think commitment is well, right. Like each state has its own thing that it kind of wants, and then we have the federal in the US is a very large country. So it’s a little bit easier to do with a nationalistic nuclear program in another country. I think sometimes, because we have so many people, so many differing opinions. And because there’s such a huge I think, right now, we’re we’re all little triggered by each other, the Democrats and the Republicans. Yeah.
Robert Bryce 33:52
Yeah. Well, that’s a key point. And it’s one that I think is important, too. And I want to follow up on that. Because as you look around the world, and you see where is nuclear succeeding? Well, and which countries are being able to deploy nuclear and doing it at scale? Well, it’s China and Russia, in particular Ross atom being the obvious example. But these are these are state champions. Right. These are these are national champions in the same you could say the South Koreans, right. But you make that point about the federal versus the state. Are we going to have to have a more nationalistic nuclear policy? I mean, we’ve had some good regulation come out of Congress and supportive nuclear, but isn’t. I’ll ask it this way. Is that legislation enough? Are we going to have to have more federal involvement, more federal backing to really deploy nuclear at scale in the US?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 34:42
I think there’s going to whether it’s through actual policy, or maybe even just talking about it on a national scale. Last year, Jennifer Granholm came out in support of Diablo Canyon saying we need to keep all existing nuclear online in California. I believe that would be a small hindrance, it would be a mistake. Seeing us being able to point back to Jennifer Granholm Secretary of Energy was a big thing. And I think that did play a role in Gavin Newsom, allowing himself to change his mind. It gave him the oxygen to say, Oh, I Okay, it’s good. We’re good. Biden came out. So I think even just talking about it is a great first step on on national levels, whether you’re holding a position of power, because and also it’s a bipartisan issue. Republicans and Democrats can come together on nuclear it has happened in other states in Illinois. In Illinois, they’re currently on the path to repeal the moratorium. And they have people on both sides of the aisle. California, not so much. We’re not there yet. But we are seeing a slight shift. So I don’t know how much national push we’ll need. But there needs to be support for those states that want it. I think that’s going to be key.
Robert Bryce 35:58
So talk about California, because you’re a native Californian and a lot of people believe well, it was hopeless that Diablo Canyon would be saved, but it has. And in fact, there’s been now the NRC has said that the plant could operate past 2025. While pg&e applies for a license extension. I don’t think I have all my terms exactly right there. But that’s the gist of it. Right that that plant was scheduled to be closed by 2025, the NRC, that was it, but now they could potentially extend it. How important and this is a plant? I’ve thought about it in these terms. Forget that it’s a nuclear plant, whether it’s 10% of the generation capacity in California, I mean, you know, by itself, right? What, you know, red, orange, green, yellow, gas, coal, whatever, don’t close 10% of your generation, right? We need this. So what about how significant I’ll put it this way, heard this question this way. How significant was that victory that Diablo Canyon was saved, and it was saved in California?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 37:02
I mean, it was monumental. I advocate Did you think
Robert Bryce 37:05
you could say that? I mean, what did you believe? Deep down? Did you think it was possible? Or did you ever give up anything? Well, this is not gonna happen.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 37:12
I, I believed I was like, There’s no way that we can close it. Even if you don’t want it, there’s no way you can close 10% of our electricity source, because we’ve had rolling blackouts back in 2020. And then each year, it’s like, oh, we’re teetering. Like everybody used less. Like they’re putting so much effort into these efficiency resource. What is it called? I forgot
Robert Bryce 37:37
to add response. Yeah, right. Yes. Which is amazing. And I was spoken an event last week, and there were these utility people talking about what we’re gonna do and response. And I thought, oh, you know, for nearly the entire history of the utility sector and I’m a fan of ready kilowatt and ready kilowatts in our film juice and, you know, dancing around encouraging women particularly to use more electricity. And now suddenly, utilities, oh, no, use less. And I’m thinking, Well, wait, just a darn Minute. Your whole business is why, you know, why would you you know, when to grocery stores, or McDonald’s, they don’t eat our Big Macs, you know, we want you to eat more. Right? You know, whenever do why else would you tell your customer to use less what other industry does this? But yet, but that whole thing in California? I mean, it goes back to kind of where you thought you started with this idea? Oh, well, we’ll just use less well, we’ll, we’ll grow organic vegetables, and we’ll you know, we’ll be vegans and we’ll you know, we’ll all camp out more and you know, but so you never thought lost hope you always thought Diablo would stay open. Yeah. Because
Paris Ortiz-Wines 38:36
I think I was like, there’s, for me, it’s like, there’s just no way you can’t do it. You’re not. It just wouldn’t happen. But I will say like you mentioned, everybody else that we talked to was like, Oh, damn, cars don’t die on that hill, you know. It’s a dope came to us and had said, you know, we were one of the last ones on the list. But nobody else had said that there. Were doing work for Diablo Canyon. And we’re like, yeah, we’re doing work for Diablo Canyon. We’re always down for it. And so it was a very small core group. And then over the last few years that I tweeted about it. The opening message that I started the WhatsApp with and I said, Hello, everyone. Welcome to the WhatsApp. That’s going to save Diablo Canyon. And that was the group and it can make me cry. Because it was over two years, some of the months, six months period something nothing was happening. But we were still in contact meeting every week. And when I speak to advocates around the world are like California, you know, California is well known in many places. And they’re like, oh, I don’t know about Diablo Canyon. You guys are gonna save it. And everybody felt that joy because we knew how much of an uplift and what a battle it would be in California. What I will say though, is what we’re seeing in many countries is you know the fear of blackouts and also not having an FL Like TriCity for your people does not look good on political, your political career, right, especially if you have aspirations to be president one day, Reg daddy Newsom probably does. And he was the one that specifically had ordered Diablo Canyon and pg&e to not resubmit their license. He said, we’re not going to do this. And so although we did have a role in that, and we were there when it mattered most our group did go on the hearing call where this people had told us, we do need a pronuclear. What does it appearance, we need attendance from you all because this will be a signal to the governor’s office, right to be there. And we were there. All of the people that called in, we were the ones but I will say that Newsom was scared of blackouts. And his team was like, this is energy reliability is at stake. And we’ll take it though.
Robert Bryce 40:54
So ultimately, pragmatism went out.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 40:57
Yes. And I was like, that was my reasoning for having hope. I was like, they can’t do it.
Robert Bryce 41:02
You know, I was just watching you, as you were recounting this and there was a look on your face where you went right back there and there was it was kind of a sweet moment where you could see and you were on the verge of tears that I can just see it in your face. I guess by the way, station break Paris or tease whines she is the Global Director of stand up for nuclear. She’s easy to find on Twitter stand up for that’s the numeral for nuclear Twitter stand up at stand up for nuclear and then on the web at stand up for nuclear.org. So that’s Diablo, and it’s a big win. And it’s possible that it will it should by any reasonable for a state that is committed to climate change. It would be again staggeringly stupid to close it. But let’s talk about Palisades This is one of the other will ignore Indian Point which is still a sore point for me because I’ve been to that nuclear plant and the closure of that is criminal and eight shame on you Natural Resources Defense Council and shame on you Riverkeeper for your heinous role in the closure of those of those two reactors. But there is a possibility now that the Palisades nuclear plant in Michigan could come back online, which to me is interesting, which would really be a Lazarus moment because here’s Holtec, a company that was bought that took over the took over the reactor. The plant from Entergy has now applied to get the plant reopened. I don’t know much about this. Do you have a status update on what’s going on with that?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 42:21
Yeah. So background on that we did have a small group working for the year and a half before Palisades did officially close. In what I will say the morale was down. Many of the workers at the plant those in the community are like it’s a done deal. Like we’ve already tried fighting. It’s too close. So when it did close, there was this sense. We did have individuals talking to Holtec saying there might be some reopening. So when that did come out. I saw we heard I believe the governor of Michigan was like yeah, I’m I’m for it, if they can figure it out, like people are like, Okay, if you can make it work, we’re, we’re down. So the last I’ve seen of it, they have applied there. They had a hearing a couple of weeks ago, talking about what that process would look like if they would like to reopen it. And I’m excited for that. I don’t know what it would entail. I don’t I don’t know what a reopening looks like in the US of A plant that I
Robert Bryce 43:24
don’t either. And the governor is Governor Whitmer, Gretchen Whitmer. And they she had written a letter before the plant closed seeking to keep it open. And to me was interesting about that as well. And really a key was that it’s in the PJM ISO and Pa PJM said we’re short generation this is you know, and the closure happened despite PJM saying we don’t have enough juice here, and we’re looking out at the future and seeing more coal plants closing we need this plant and yet it was closed anyway. My understanding is Holtec doesn’t have an operator’s license. And that that’s the one of the issues but I’m not familiar with all of the details in in.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 44:01
I have to come in. Yeah, nuclear company. So maybe it’s Exelon constellation, sorry, or a different.
Robert Bryce 44:08
Right. So let’s talk about renewables for a little while, because you talked about, you know, again, when we first started talking, you talked about solar panels and you know, using less and the rest of it, the shift, there’s I think there’s definitely been a change in how nuclear is perceived by the general public, certainly by Millennials like yourself and and I think among baby boomers as well, there’s been a shift in the polling data. But here’s the question Why are renewables Why do why do they have this patina of of acceptability? Why does the public they pull very well right the renewables do? Why is that why are renewables so popular in the human psyche in America anyway?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 44:53
I think because their basic right when turbans, you can see them I can drive past them when And they’re in multiple spots throughout California, you can see solar panels, right. And the basic use or function or how they work, right, the wind blows, and then it turns and then we have electricity, and then the sun hits them. And then we get electricity. And with nuclear, you can’t just say you do this. And this, it’s a little bit more technical. And of course, there’s more baggage around nuclear and misconceptions that I’m just having to tear down all the time. And it’s, you really have to have a finesse about it, because you have a very short amount of time when talking to people about nuclear energy. So with solar and wind, they had beautiful marketing, they they sold us this vision of like, they’re simple, we don’t have to rely, it’s not extractive, at least not for the materials to make the actual components themselves. But we’re just with nature, we just take the wind when we need it. And the sun will come when you know when we need it most. And then we’re gonna put them in batteries. And everybody knows what a battery is, you know, we have iPhones, we have our Macs, and people are now getting EVs. So people are like, yeah, batteries, solar wind, that’s great. But many people, including myself, don’t didn’t know how electricity works, how energy works, you know, electricity versus primary energy God, like I really Mark and I, you know, Mark really helped break it down for me. So renewables are simple. And they had really good marketing. They gave us a vision of like, if you want to harmonize with nature, and if you’re going to solve climate change, when wind turbine and solar panels, like, they’re beautiful, like they’re just so simple.
Robert Bryce 46:41
And fission is not something that you can explain very quickly or in a concrete
Paris Ortiz-Wines 46:47
dome, it’s on a plant. It’s really big. It makes it it does fission heats water. Oh, but there’s so many more components to it. Right?
Robert Bryce 46:58
Yeah, that was the knock when it’s so I’m live in Austin. And you know, for years, there were the lot of people in this town when I moved to Austin. Now nearly 40 years ago, they made their political careers by opposing the South Texas project, which Austin owns 16% of. But that investment that city made has been the best return on investment and bar none that the city has ever made. There’s no second place. I mean, it’s you know, we’re getting power from that plant now for two cents a kilowatt hour or something like that. I mean, but the knock was, oh, nuclear is just an expensive way to boil water. Right, you know, and that was the kind of, you know, just, oh, it’s so complicated, right. But, yeah, I like the way you thought you think about that, because that rings true to me as well that oh, this is simple. We can see these we can understand how they work. Whereas nuclear, there’s you has to believe it requires a belief in big systems, big, big business, and big is to a certain degree, big government. And so I think that that’s is are we going to need that governmental shift at this. Is it correct to think that we’re going to need that governmental shift to happen both at the state level and the federal level for nuclear to succeed at new nuclear to succeed at scale in the US?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 48:09
I want to say no, but I think so. But there, but like the South Texas project, and I believe Columbia station as well. It’s more of a you have owners rights. It’s more like a socialist vibe to it, where like, we can all kind of be owners of this. So I think maybe the Tennessee Valley Authority? Yes, yes, that one as well. What if we’re looking at California, our state in our leaders are going to be like, we need to go nuclear and then it then it’s going to be dependent on each county? Like who’s actually Where are you going to cite it? Where are you going to put it? And will people want it there. And what we saw on our last NRC hearing, we had a pronuclear show out of 3211 people in support of Diablo Canyon, and it was local business owners, it was a local teachers, it was a local insurance reps. So once you have it as we know, it brings an immense amount of not only fiscal support for this community, but that sense of you know, high paying jobs,
Robert Bryce 49:17
right. Generational jobs, right. This is one of the issues that didn’t even point right that you had multiple generations of fathers and sons and nephews working at the plant and that this would over decades, and whereas the jobs around solar and wind are temporary, right and very, very fleeting, a lot of them very transitory
Paris Ortiz-Wines 49:37
and have the half the unionization rate as nuclear.
Robert Bryce 49:39
Right. So what do you think about fusion? We’ve been talking about fission, and there’s a lot of money going toward fusion. What’s your take on that?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 49:48
I think it’s similar to advanced nuclear as well, you know, fusion still hasn’t demonstrated that it’s, you know, you know, from the engineers that I get to interact with, you know, some of them are really gung ho on it and That’s how they got into fission was through fusion. And others are like we’ve been on the cusp for the last, I don’t know, 20 plus years for two years. So if it happens, great, but there’s still going to be issues with it. And I think similar to the advanced reactor individuals, some of them, Fusion has been sold as like, oh, fission is whatever, like fusions the future, and I just am a little bit skeptical. If it’s there, and it works and we get to deploy it then great, but there are issues with fusion that will happen that are similar to fission, the perceived problems,
Robert Bryce 50:33
right. Yeah, I’m with you. I feel like well, fission works. We let’s let’s build let’s focus on fission right now. We have enough trouble building fission plants. Why are we spending so much time on fusion? Not saying we shouldn’t try, but I think that there’s, there’s a lot of, but nevertheless, there seems to be some more momentum behind it.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 50:54
Because it’s sexy, right? It’s something new, and it’s innovative. And it’s not here yet. And I think for investors, that’s part of the pitch, like, am I investing in a future technology? Or is this the old technology? Like I think that’s why a lot of advanced reactor companies have been successful in raising money because it is new, and they get to see that they were part of it. Right?
Robert Bryce 51:15
What does the public get wrong about radiation?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 51:19
Radiation is a part of life. It’s everywhere. It’s it’s in our food, we ourselves are a bit radioactive, and I background radiation. I think people just hear radiation and immediately connected to cancer. But of course, it’s not the cancer life saving, but the cancer, access of radiation can lead to cancer. That’s what I thought when I saw the Chernobyl accident was reading up on it was like, oh, it’s gonna give me cancer. So with radiation, I answered a question at the Nuclear now screening. I was like, it’s a part of life. And I think once we know more about it, once you, it’s so easy to detect, we’re able to detect it. And then also just looking at some simple charts of like the radioactive dose CT scan, you get radiation when you fly across in the airplane, I think just people don’t know about it. It just we think radiation, we don’t have to put much thought to it.
Robert Bryce 52:15
So then to overcome that it’s going to require that continual reminder about bananas and flying and all these other things that that’s going to, is that going to be required to allow nuclear to succeed, then to get people to understand that as you say, it’s everywhere?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 52:32
Yes. And what has been successful my experience when speaking to individuals, I said, you know, like everything in life, it depends on how you know, too much of anything is not really good. So if we’re looking at radiation, some is good. But if we’re looking at if there’s a nuclear accident, it always depends on you know, how high of the dose and then for how long you’re being exposed to. And we’re able because we’ve studied it, so intensively we know how to limit that and to get people out or this your shifts done, and how to clean up and how to maintain it. And I think if you go to cobra and the Netherlands, which not everybody can go, only to say I can bring back the stories and say you can go visit.
Robert Bryce 53:14
I’m sorry, what is that another Luna? Cobra is
Paris Ortiz-Wines 53:17
the high is the radioactive waste depository in
Robert Bryce 53:21
Cobra cov era? Yes, the Cobra in the nether okay, I wasn’t familiar with this. Or though No, I’ve seen pictures of you next to the big metal. The big casks is that where
Paris Ortiz-Wines 53:31
this one is the one where you can walk over him. So they’re high level wastes in their cans or in the floor. And so you can walk over. And they host not only the high level waste, but low and intermediate waste, which people don’t really talk about when they talk about waste. They’re just reactor.
Robert Bryce 53:49
But you’ve been that’s I think that’s where I’ve seen other photos, are you standing next to the cask and you’re kind of standing there with the Carol Merrill kind of pose next to this. So demystifying it, guess what, then we have to demystify both the waist and the issue of radiation to get more public acceptance. Is that it? Would that be a fair statement?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 54:09
Yes. And I believe images and videos are very successful. The nuclear now film, although I wasn’t onboard with all the aspects of it, I thought it was a beautiful piece. That was 110 minutes, you can show to people and be it laid it all out for you. And as we know, images and videos, do more work than what we can, let’s say in 60 seconds with an individual and then I can ask questions. So what we continue to do images and then also just talking about nuclear itself, people are like, Oh, it’s not weird. It’s not that dangerous. If, if this cool girl is talking about nuclear, it shouldn’t it must not be that bad.
Robert Bryce 54:49
Right? Gotcha. So the nuclear now just to be clear, people haven’t heard of it. So the new film by Oliver Stone who worked on it with Joshua Goldstein, it’s out now I don’t know why No, it had the net it’ll release on May 1. I don’t know if it’s available now or where but I’m sure you can find it. So just a couple more questions. And again, my guest is Paris Ortiz whines, she’s the Global Director of stand up for nuclear can find her and her group on Twitter at stand up for that’s the numeral for nuclear and then on the web at stand up for nuclear.org. So, Paris, what drives you?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 55:24
My drives me, I think just the joy of life, right, I have such good things to look forward to, I have a great community, I have a great partner, I love to travel. And I get to do the work with nuclear energy. And that allows me to live my life guilt free a little bit in the sense of I’m doing something that matters and will make an impact. And so I want to keep living my life with as much joy and as much hope as I can. And I think my career allows me to do that.
Robert Bryce 56:00
So is there an endpoint though, when you look at this is this, you think this is going to be your career? I mean, you’re 28? You said that before? And yeah. Do you think you could do this for 20 years? 30 years? I mean, is this the passion that is this your life purpose?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 56:17
I think if if it, let’s say I get out of nuclear tomorrow, I think I would still be involved in the advocacy efforts. In my local state, I think it will be something that I will forever push because energy is the foundation of human society and allows human flourishing and for us to conserve as much land as we can with, we look at the most energy dense technology. And it will always be an issue we’re we’re going to have this will be the issue of our lifetime. How are we going to get enough clean energy so that we limit fossil fuels? And so regardless, I’d say if I get fired, or I don’t have enough money, I still do it on side. I’ll still volunteer, because it brings me hope.
Robert Bryce 56:57
Well, I’ll come back to that for a minute. But you mentioned the issue of land use. And this is one that I’ve been tracking for a long time. And I’ve traveled a fair amount around around the US and I was just in Iowa last week. And and before that I was in Wisconsin, and meeting with people who are trying to protect their neighborhoods against the encroachment of these big renewable projects. And to me, this is one of the things were just gonna riff for a second and off, I’m sure I’ll formulate a question here. But it’s, it’s stunning to me to see how the legacy environment alt energy groups, the legacy climate change groups are so in I’ll use this word in bed with big business and big banks and looking at steamrolling rural America and in covering vast amounts of land, and I just look at it, I think, what are you doing? Is it I’ll put it to you this way? Has that legacy environmentalism just lost its way in that they it seems to me they’ve directly lived in a very real way have lost their connection to the actual dirt the to the land. That’s my view, does it? Does that rhyme with what you it’s how you see it? Because you mentioned land use for the first time there and your land when you were talking about this? How do you see this? Because these land use conflicts are huge in California.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 58:15
Yeah, I think there’s been, you know, I think there’s a lot of been a lot of cherry picking with the left. So I live on the coast. I’m in Berkeley, and you know, this coastal elitism idea is true. I think back in the day, I was like, well, we can’t put the wind turbines near here, we need to put it where we have the most land. And those people just need to suck it up because they need to do their part. Right. So we’re
Robert Bryce 58:42
that’s the, that’s the sentiment, those people need to suck it up. They need to do their part. Yeah, go ahead. I’m sorry.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 58:48
Climate No, in climate change is, like it’s been anytime you try to question whether or not why they’re not protecting these lands, or why they’re pushing this like bad project, or why we need renewables or not nuclear, it’s like, because climate change, it’s been used as an excuse to possibly do some irresponsible damage. And in producing some of these projects, and I actually had the privilege of speaking with a couple of these groups that have been affected by wind, the wind industry. And once they it’s divided families, once you get a winter ran out on your sector, they control that for the 25 plus years, you can’t do anything around it. And honestly, I wouldn’t want to live near these wind turbines either. Like I get what, like, Oh, they’re fine. We need them for climate change. But honestly, I’d rather live near a nuclear plant because it’s that one building. I don’t want these wind turbines. And there’s also as you know, there’s many effects to the natural ecosystem. These wind turbines are put in these wind corridors where there it is migratory paths and they have been killing birds, especially the one up here. ultimate, ultimate pass us Fish and Wildlife, you can go on there and see all the dead apex predators that it’s killed. It’s a horrible project. So just the point would be I see it, I thought the same way, suck it up. And I think we get to cherry pick of which communities we want to defend.
Robert Bryce 1:00:16
Right. And the wealthy ones and the wealthy ones get defended.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 1:00:20
Yes, yes, the wealthy ones. And then also, I think there’s at least with California, it’s very diverse. So we do like to prioritize people of color communities, which rightfully so. But I think we forget that there’s another factor that plays into this, which is class and economic status, we have a lot more in common those that share the economic class, because they have some of the same struggles. Right, of course, there’s other layers of an ethnicity. But I think there’s just a divide between world and city and we haven’t in California, and there just hasn’t, we don’t really mix. Right. And so I think we just get to make these decisions up in the air and don’t know who they affect because, oh, we just drive past their towns when I go down to LA, right.
Robert Bryce 1:01:06
Yeah, I agree. There’s a huge urban rural divide, and I think it’s growing. So last two questions in Paris. What are you reading? What books are on the top of your list?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 1:01:15
I’m reading the color of law. It is written by a Berkeley professor and it basically is describing the whole setup of how we basically instituted racist policies as far as housing wise how Realtors were not bankers were in the Feds ran on it, like every level. It’s a it’s a great book, and not too dense for me. So that’s what I’ve been reading. And then, at nighttime, I’ll read my Harry Potter books I’ve read, I’m starting to reread them.
Robert Bryce 1:01:44
Uh huh. You talked about this, or you touched on it just a little bit. So the color of law, so really about redlining, the exclusion, which is an issue that Jennifer Hernandez has worked on quite a lot. He’s been on the podcast and has done a lot of work on that, as well as Robert Apodaca, who’s been on the podcast and people with the 200, who, in fact, are suing California on several for several different lawsuits. So last question, Paris, what gives you hope?
Paris Ortiz-Wines 1:02:14
I would say besides nuclear, it would be my community, my friends and family. I’m surrounded by great people, and they get to do amazing things in their own ways. And I get to share with them in that. And then also I get to bring what I get to do so I think it’s very human, right? We’re very social creatures. And it matters on not only your mental, but your physical health of whether or not you have a community and you have people.
Robert Bryce 1:02:43
Well, that’s a good place to stop. My guest has been the charming Paris Ortiz whines. She is the Global Director of stand up for nuclear She’s based in Berkeley, California. You can find her on Twitter stand up for that’s a numeral for nuclear and on the web at stand up for nuclear.org Paris been a pleasure to have you on the power hungry podcasts. Thanks for your time.
Paris Ortiz-Wines 1:03:01
So fun, Robert.
Robert Bryce 1:03:03
I’ll see you soon. Okay, and thanks to all of you in podcast land, give us a good rating and give us five or 12 or 16 stars on that rating thing. And if you haven’t done it, follow me on substack ROBERT BRYCE Dodd substack.com And until the next episode of power hungry podcast, see you