I do wonder why Slashdotters consider KK to be some kind of authority on the state of fusion research. It is obvious from his replies that he has a cursory knowledge of the field at best. As someone who has published research in the area, I can state a couple of misconceptions being offered by KK. 1) No one doing active research in the fusion community thinks that fusion power is "1 year away." At best, the National Ignition Facility is a few years away from demonstrating breakeven (energy into the laser = fusion neutron energy produced). A realistic plant scenario is 30 years (or more) from that point. ITER is the equivalent experiment on the magnetic fusion side of the house, and that timeline is closer to 2040 now. 2) No one seriously looking at fusion energy is talking about competing with coal or fission based electricity. At best, fusion (so far) can compete with other renewables on a cost per kWh basis - which is about a factor of 5 more expensive than coal or fission power.