Gov. Chris Gregoire is applauding President Obama's recent push for nuclear power — a stance that could cause political headaches for her. Gregoire, a Democrat, met with Obama and 10 other governors Wednesday to talk about energy. Obama called for increased ethanol production and new technology to limit pollution from the use of coal. Gregoire has spent much of her career working to ensure cleanup of the Hanford nuclear reservation, which was contaminated from nuclear weapons work rather than nuclear power production.
She says the Northwest is in good shape to develop alternative energy sources such as hydropower, wind, solar and - increasingly - cellulosic ethanol from wood chips and grass.
She says nuclear energy must be part of that mix. The state's only operating nuclear power plant is north of Richland.
With global climate change, Gregoire says "options that were off the table now are on the table."