Nuclear Trumped by Renewables Worldwide, New Report Shows

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Kevin Kamps, 240.462.3216  Linda Gunter, 301.455.5655

Nuclear Trumped by Renewables Worldwide, New Report Shows

TAKOMA PARK, MD, - The 2015 edition of an annual empirical analysis of the state of nuclear power globally, confirms a continued decline that belies claims to a “nuclear renaissance.”  Instead, the report shows, solar energy in particular, is soaring ahead while nuclear stagnates and falters.  

The findings of the 2015 World Nuclear Industry Status Report, published on July 15 in the UK and available on-line, illustrate, as Forum for the Future trustee, Jonathon Porritt, wrote in the foreword: "The impressively resilient hopes that many people still have of a global nuclear renaissance are being trumped by a real‐time revolution in efficiency‐plus‐renewables‐plus‐storage, delivering more and more solutions on the ground every year."

A key finding in the report showed that solar power generation worldwide had increased by 38% while nuclear energy generation showed only a 2.2% increase.  Delays and cost over-runs persist at most of the 62 nuclear power plant construction sites, while the lights remain on in Japan, despite the fact that the country is at zero nuclear energy with all of its reactors still shut down.

“This is a valuable study which each year separates empirical fact from nuclear industry fantasy,” said Kevin Kamps, a spokesperson for Beyond Nuclear.  “It exposes the incredible uncertainties attached to a nuclear energy economy while demonstrating beyond the shadow of a doubt that renewable energy and energy efficiency are a far sounder investment and a much safer choice.”

Among the key findings in the report:

  • Nuclear plant construction starts plunged from 15 in 2010 to three in 2014.
  • There are 62 reactors under construction — five fewer than a year ago — of which at least three‐quarters are delayed. In 10 of the 14 building countries all projects are delayed, often by years. Five units have been listed as “under construction” for over 30 years.
  • The share of nuclear power in the global electricity mix remained stable at less than 11% for a third year in a row.
  • China, Germany, Japan — three of the world’s four largest economies — plus Brazil, India, Mexico, the Netherlands, and Spain, now all generate more electricity from non‐hydro renewables than from nuclear power. These eight countries represent more than three billion people or 45 percent of the world's population. 

The full report can be downloaded for free at: http://www.worldnuclearreport.org/-2015-.html

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Beyond Nuclear aims to educate and activate the public about the connections between nuclear power and nuclear weapons and the need to abandon both to safeguard our future. Beyond Nuclear advocates for an energy future that is sustainable, benign and democratic.

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