Is France a nuclear wonderland?

News & Politics

There are lots of comments on "Bush's Nuclear Madness" over on the front page about how France is a model of successful nuclear energy. But it's not quite the shining example that nuclear proponents would have you believe.

It's true that nuclear power plants generate almost 80 percent of France's electricity, and that by and large the French public supports it.

But the French don't want a nuclear future any more than the American public does; a poll in 2002 found that 61 percent of French respondents "would prefer to phase out nuclear energy."

They support nuclear energy but want to phase it out in the future -- how do you explain that dichotomy?

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