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The Roadmaps to New Nuclear conference, organised by the French Ministry for Energy Transition and the OECD’s Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) in Paris, resulted in two communiques signed by energy ministers and industry representatives emphasising the need for nuclear energy.

Date: Tuesday, 03 October 2023
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The Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) has released a report recommending that South Korea and the US should strengthen cooperation in the nuclear power export market, which is currently dominated by Russia and China. This should include building a supply chain together.

Date: Saturday, 13 May 2023
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There is widespread public support for advanced nuclear energy technologies, according to a new, multinational survey of attitudes toward nuclear energy. The report is a collaborative effort by the non-governmental organisations ClearPath, Third Way, Potential Energy Coalition and RePlanet.

Date: Thursday, 11 May 2023
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Global optimism ‘rising’ about potential of reactors to help achieve net zero emissions Fatih Birol (left) and Rafael Grossi at the International Atomic Energy Agency discussion on nuclear power at Cop27 in Egypt. Courtesy IAEA. Nuclear power is making “a strong comeback”, but the international financial community has so far “failed” to provide the level playing field needed for nuclear to help the world tackle its most pressing challenges, from climate change to sustainable development, International Energy Agency (IEA) executive director Fatih Birol told the Cop27 United Nations climate conference in in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

Birol told an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) discussion on nuclear power: “I don’t give them a passing grade.”

“Countries that were saying goodbye to nuclear power, they are rethinking their plans,” Birol said, adding that the IEA had been engaged in talks with both Belgium and Germany.

“We are very happy that both governments are now in the process of postponing their nuclear phaseout plans, understanding the role that nuclear plays in addressing this energy security challenge,” he said.

In addition, another group of countries is now considering extending the lifetime of their existing nuclear power reactors to respond to this challenge, which is one of the cheapest forms of low carbon power, Birol said. Still another group of countries are rolling out plans to build new reactors, including seemingly “surprising” ones such as the Netherlands and Poland as well as Japan and South Korea.

Date: Friday, 11 November 2022
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Country becomes latest to turn to reactors for low-carbon energy security Vattenfall is majority owner of three operational reactors at Forsmark (pictured) and two at Ringhals. Sweden’s incoming government will ask state-run utility Vattenfall to plan and procure new nuclear power stations – potentially making the country one of an increasing number turning to commercial reactors as a source of low-carbon, baseload energy supply.

“New reactors will be built in Sweden,” said Ebba Busch, whose Christian Democrat party belongs to an alliance that won the most seats in last month’s general election. The right-wing bloc is scheduled to become the Nordic nation’s next government in a parliamentary vote next week.

Sweden now joins other countries in Europe that are turning to nuclear power in response to record high energy prices and fears over the security of key infrastructure.

Swedes have debated nuclear power for decades, but the energy source has garnered popular support recently amid the ongoing power crunch.

Date: Saturday, 15 October 2022
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NuScale aiming to deploy a Voygr plant at Doicesti The G7 summit took place in Schloss Elmau, south Germany on 26 June - 28 June 2022. Image courtesy European Council. The US government has decided to provide $14m (€13.2m) worth of funding for a front-end engineering and design study which is to provide the basis for the deployment of a small modular reactor (SMR) power plant in Romania.

US President Joe Biden made the announcement at this weekend’s G7 leaders’ summit in Schloss Elmau, Germany, where he presented US initiatives to form part of a newly set up Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGII).

The PGII aims to reduce global infrastructure gaps, strengthen economies and supply chains and will mobilise $600bn for investment by 2027, about a third of which will be provided by the US.

Date: Thursday, 30 June 2022
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International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi attended the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting in Davos on 24 and 25 May. Nuclear provides the opportunity for a faster transition to a low-carbon energy future and supports the shift to a hydrogen economy, he told participants. In an opinion piece on the WEF website, Grossi said that nuclear is gaining increasing support in the battle against climate change, that reaching net-zero carbon emissions will require a doubling of nuclear capacity, and that technology such as small modular reactors (SMRs) and used fuel repositories are increasing nuclear accessibility and safety.

Date: Friday, 27 May 2022
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Group ‘disappointed’ that reactors being treated as transitional technology Yves Desbazeille: ‘We remain disappointed that nuclear continues to be treated as a transitional technology’. The European nuclear energy industry has welcomed a decision to include nuclear in the bloc’s sustainable finance taxonomy under certain conditions, but warned that some of the criteria put forward will prove very challenging to attain.

“We remain disappointed that nuclear continues to be treated as a transitional technology,” said Foratom director-general Yves Desbazeille. “We firmly believe that it contributes to climate mitigation objectives and does not cause more harm than any other power-producing technology already considered as taxonomy compliant.”

According to the proposed regulations announced on 2 February, nuclear can be considered as taxonomy compliant as long as it meets several stringent conditions, including:

Date: Saturday, 05 February 2022
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‘Today we are setting out strict conditions to help mobilise finance to support the energy transition’ The European commission has officially put forward regulations to label nuclear energy as sustainable under its financial taxonomy regulations, ending months of uncertainty and wrangling over whether the industry would have a significant place in the bloc’s transition to zero carbon.

The legislation means nuclear will now be labelled as a “green” energy source that could contribute to Europe’s transition to climate neutrality.

The commission said in a statement that the college of commissioners – a body made up of 27 policy commissioners – reached a political agreement on the text of the new regulations, known as a complementary delegated act, which could now become law on 1 January 2023.

It said a great deal of private investment is needed for the EU to become climate neutral by 2050. The taxonomy aims to guide private investment to activities that are needed to achieve climate neutrality.

The taxonomy does not determine whether a certain technology will or will not be part of a member state’s energy mix. “The objective is to step up the transition, by drawing on all possible solutions to help us reach our climate goals,” the commission said.

Date: Thursday, 03 February 2022
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