President Obama has announced that the federal government will provide $8 billion in loan guarantees for two new reactors: the first to be built in the United States since 1979. The guarantees mean that, in the event that plant owners cannot ultimately pay their bills, the government will step in with the promised funds.
There are many reasons to be wary of nuclear power as a climate change solution, with cost and deployment times perhaps the most important (climate change is more threatening than waste, accidents, and proliferation). That said, we need to nearly phase out fossil fuel emissions by the middle of the century. Despite the thirty-year gap in construction, nuclear is still the most important zero-carbon source of electricity in the United States.
It remains impossible to know the true cost of nuclear power, once all the explicit and implicit subsidies are taken into account, as well as connections between military and civilian programs. That said, it looks like we need every low-carbon energy option available.