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Friday, September 22, 2023


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WorldAsiaRevival of nuclear energy will save lives, but will fall to Russia

Revival of nuclear energy will save lives, but will fall to Russia

After decades of decline, the world is witnessing the true dawn of a new nuclear age. The explosive mix of global climate goals and politically motivated energy wars has shifted public and private opinion on a controversial energy source. Nuclear power has notorious shortcomings, but it’s also a proven form of carbon-free power generation with plenty of existing infrastructure. Now, from the point of view of industry experts, Russia’s victory in the considered field has added to its “shortcomings”. OilPrice columnist Hayley Zaremba writes about it.

Nuclear energy is free not only from the emissions inherent in oil, gas and other fossil fuels, but also from the variability problems that all renewable energy sources present. Increasingly, the public and private sectors are listening to reason. However, no less often it is not the environmental risks of nuclear energy that come into play, but the political risks, since Russia is the recognized main player in the world industry.

Europe is changing its energy landscape in the context of the energy war with the Russian Federation. As the bloc struggles to replace the historically huge role of Russian natural gas in its energy mix, many see nuclear as the obvious solution. Pro-nuclear France is now campaigning to convince the European Commission to take seriously the role of nuclear power in the transition to clean energy.

Public opinion around the world is also changing. A recent Gallup poll shows that support for nuclear power in the United States is at its highest level in 10 years. The discussion is only growing as reliance on Russian technology and enriched uranium as the industry’s primary fuel only increases.

For some countries, the problem is glaring. For example, in India, average annual temperatures, especially in summer, reach the limits of human capacity, so the demand for air conditioners becomes not just a marketing factor, but a matter of survival and saving human lives. Supplying a multi-million dollar fleet of cooling appliances requires huge energy sources. Nuclear energy is well suited for these purposes.

Given the close cooperation between the Russian Federation and India, it is clear who New Delhi will turn to for help in the first place. And the West still depends on Russian uranium (which is why there are no sanctions against this specific type of fuel). Accordingly, the revival of nuclear energy is like a renaissance for humanity, but it brings not only deliverance, but also a return to dependence on Moscow, the expert concludes.

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