Last month the Brookings Institute published a very interesting essay by Josh Freed, a clean energy vice president with Third Way. The essay focuses on the potential in advanced nuclear energy concepts to one day assist in the battle against greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. What is particularly interesting is that many of the advanced concepts described in the essay were published by nuclear scientists and engineers in the 1950s and ’60s, but never developed. In hindsight we understand today that nuclear technology development eventually languished due to government and industry decisions to focus on large light water reactor designs first developed for the naval nuclear program. And the technology suffered in the 1970s and ’80s from the economics and politics of large scale nuclear power. Freed points out the renewed interest and funding from Silicon Valley in developing advanced conceptual technologies, because of the climate change issue. But he also highlights the inadequacy of Venture Capital funding to bring such complex technologies to market and the current lack of sufficient government support. With regard to the latter, it would appear to me that, to achieve some bipartisan support for developing promising nuclear technologies, at least two things will be necessary: the Right will need to embrace energy initiatives beyond those driven by the fossil fuel industry and the Left will need to adopt a new approach to environmentalism more open to progressive technology.