Nuclear power ‘seven decades of economic ruin’, says new report

29.07.2019 - London, United Kingdom - Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament

New research has found that almost all nuclear power plants built since the nuclear industry’s inception have generated large financial losses.

The report by the German Institute for Economic Research examines 674 nuclear power plants built since 1951. Its authors found that typical nuclear power plants averaged 4.8 billion euros in losses.

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The report authors argue that new technology for nuclear plants won’t solve the underlying economic difficulties: “Those in favor of nuclear energy like to point out the ongoing technological developments that could lead to it growing more efficient in the future.

“They include ‘fourth generation’ nuclear power plants and mini-nuclear power plants (small modular reactors, SMRs). Anything but new, both concepts have their roots in the early phase of nuclear power in the 1950s. Then as now, there was no hope that the technologies would become economical and established.”

Kate Hudson, CND general secretary, said:

“The history of nuclear power is seven decades of economic ruin and environmental catastrophe. Toshiba’s decision last year to abandon plans to build a reactor at Moorside in Cumbria and Hitachi’s suspension of work this year on the Wylfa Newydd plant in Anglesey simply reflect the economic reality that this report sets out.

“Nuclear power isn’t only expensive, it creates an unsolvable waste problem, and as the TV drama Chernobyl so graphically reveals, nuclear accidents create human misery and environmental destruction.

“Our new Prime Minister should learn these lessons and adopt a fresh approach to energy that centres on clean and economically viable renewable technology.”


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