Nuclear Power After Fukushima: Where is it Heading?
12:00 - 13:30
Energy scenarios often envision an early and large expansion of nuclear power on a global scale, especially if stringent climate targets are to be met. It is not uncommon that nuclear power captures 30-40% of the world electricity market in the second half of this century and that it provides up to 80% of total electricity in some industrialized countries. Partly as a result of the Fukushima accidents from March 2011, most of these growth projections and scenarios have become increasingly unrealistic. This talk reviews the international responses to the Fukushima Accidents and assesses the potential impact on deployment trajectories for nuclear power; the talk also examines the prospects of small modular reactors, which have begun to attract significant attention as an alternative to standard gigawatt-scale plants. Taken together, these recent developments suggest that nuclear power may play a more limited role in a future low-carbon energy system than previously anticipated.