I do not care how long Mr Witherspoon has been in journalism. That is no excuse for doing an incomplete and/or poor job. His article is not 100% based on fact, and it must be to maintain credibility. He is anti-nuclear, and therefore, he can not be considered as any kind of expert on this subject. Experts know the facts and convey them without bias. I do give him credit for being more subtle in his anti-nuclear approach compared to others, but he is unable to fully disguise his bias. That being said, he is a bullet with butterfly wings (still dangerous).
A "mechanical draft" system is still a cooling tower. It just uses fans instead of natural draft. After all is said and done one costs more to build (natural), but the other (mechanical) costs more to operate (those fans use electricity). In the end, they will both end up costing the same.