Another Look At Nuclear

Barry Brook and Ben Heard make the case for more nuclear power:

[W]hat we really want is the product of the power plant, not the plant itself: that is, dependable electricity. Here, nuclear excels, delivering electricity at an excellent price, with capacity factors now exceeding 90% in the U.S. and South Korea. Perhaps even more importantly, this price will be reliable. Thanks to negligible fuel costs and no carbon emissions in the generation, nuclear power is almost completely insulated from two of the biggest incoming pressures on power prices: carbon prices and fuel scarcity. When we are building expensive infrastructure with a long life, such considerations matter a great deal.

So where does that leave us? Real-world experience tells us that nuclear can provide well-priced and reliable electricity. In capital terms, nuclear is the best-value form of zero-carbon generation, with miles of daylight to the competition. That may be a surprise, but this industry has learned. New designs are predominantly more standardized in design, and more reliant on passive, rather than engineered safety systems, and come in a range of sizes. All of this brings cost down.