Letters to the Editor: Why fusion energy isn’t our immediate climate savior

A view of equipment in a testing facility with metal ladders and two diagonal tubelike metal beams
The National Ignition Facility Target Bay at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, which recently achieved fusion ignition.
(Damien Jemison / Associated Press)

To the editor: Heralding the creation of fusion energy in a laboratory for the first time in 80 years of trying as a “quantum leap for clean energy” is dangerously misleading. The same scientists at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory who achieved the breakthrough are quick to say that any conceivable, practical use of fusion is decades and billions of dollars away.

We already have ways to produce cheap, clean, carbon-free energy using wind, water and the sun to produce electricity. Stanford University climate scientist Mark Jacobson and his colleagues have created comprehensive, science-based plans to power all 50 states in America with clean electricity. They are working on plans for more than 140 other countries.

Cort Casady, Palos Verdes Peninsula



To the editor: President Reagan delighted his anti-government supporters when he quipped, “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.’”

Well, President Reagan, by achieving fusion ignition, the government just delivered the kind of help that could provide nearly limitless clean energy to all Americans.

Seventy years of taxpayer-funded research, decried as socialistic, big-government waste, have produced a breakthrough that could save the planet and improve people’s lives forever, while setting the table for our robust private sector to generate millions of rewarding careers and untold wealth for entrepreneurs and shareholders.

Perhaps the most terrifying nine words in the English language are, “Government programs are always a waste of your money.”

Jay Lynch, Pittsburgh, Pa.