Obama to propose over $54 billion in nuclear power loan guarantees

In the Senate, Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) are trying to negotiate a compromise climate and energy bill that they say would include new federal backing for reactor construction.

The nuclear industry has lobbied hard for Energy Department loan guarantees far in excess of the $18.5 billion DoE can currently offer. The department is expected to announce the first recipients soon as power companies seek to build the first new U.S. reactors in decades.