b'C HAPTER T WENT Y -O NEB Y T H E E N D O F T H I S D E C A D E[There is] the likelihood of the AEC almost sureptitiously permitting Idahos NRTS burialrground to evolve into one of the nations large de facto burial grounds.Cecil AndrusC ecil D. Andrus, The whole scheme invited new indus- How long would it take to develop eco-tries, expanded the economic base, and nomic hydrogen fuel? Andrus posedresolved potential energy shortages. 2 these questions to professors at theelected governor of Idaho in 1970, had University of Idaho (U of I). Soon studya nuclear vision for the development of The vision required research. Did irra- proposals were under way, with titlessoutheast Idaho. The growing season of diation really cause seeds to germinate such as A Conceptual Study of athis high-elevation part of the state early? Would there be any undesirable Nuclear Energy Park for the State ofmight be extended by irradiating seeds Idaho, and Agrocargo Hydrogento cause their early germination. Then a Study. Perhaps the NRTS couldnuclear reactor somewhere in the region become the center for research applyingcould lend its heat to irrigation water atomic age energy to agriculture notfor the seeds, further extending the only in the United States but the rest ofgrowing season. The agricultural base the world as well. 3of the region could diversify, no longerlimited to potatoes and a short list of The governors enthusiasm for a nuclear-other crops. The reactors abundant based future in southeast Idaho encour-electricity would short-circuit any fur- aged the INEC board and helped it focusther debate about damming Idaho rivers its research grants. And r uss stafffor more hydroelectric power, an issue researched additional questions, such asgrowing ever more controversial. The whether the Environmental Protectionreactor also would complement the Agency (EPA) had established minimumresearch and development activity at the standards on plutonium in the soil. 4NRTS, further diversifying the econo-my. 1 Bill Ginkel cooperated. By July 1,1973, U of I professors were ready toThere was more. Nuclear reactors might Boise State University Library 3502A10 start an experiment just outside thepower an electrolytic process making Governor Cecil D. Andrus perimeter fence of the Chem Plant.hydrogen fuel from water. Hydrogen They would use thermally warm waterwas non-toxic and upon combustion from the plants operations to irrigateproduced only water as waste. side effects to using reactor cooling certain forest trees and ornamentalHydrogen-powered aircraft could carry water for irrigation? Where might plants to test how far the growing sea-Idaho agricultural abundance to Asia. nuclear power plants best be located? son could be extended. 520 4'