Four major factors are coinciding that will affect the future of nuclear power: a recognition that achieving net-zero by 2050 requires nuclear in the energy mix; an availability of federal money due to the infrastructure bill and Inflation Reduction Act; an urgent need to increase base load for utilities; and a plethora of new, safer, easier-to-build small modular reactors coming to market. There is a quickening of the pace throughout the nuclear establishment as product and mechanism appear to be aligned. But, there have been false starts in the past for nuclear. Is this the start of a nuclear revival, and will it be characterized by modified reactors of the past utilizing advanced fuel and safety – or radical new designs? Will utilities buy reactors from new companies or from the usual players?
The Tennessee Valley Authority has signed up for two BWRX-300 reactors from GE Hitachi, and Dow Chemical is partnering with X-Energy for process heat and generation technology. Is this the start of a pattern, or will Wall Street seek out private investment opportunities in nuclear generation? These critical questions and more will be addressed in this briefing, which will consist of a panel of experts taking questions from knowledgeable journalists.
USEA Acting Executive Director Sheila Hollis will give opening remarks. Llewellyn King, nationally syndicated newspaper columnist and broadcaster, organized this briefing and will moderate. The general audience can submit questions using the Zoom Q&A function, but members of the media will be given preference. A recording will be made available after the briefing.
Panelists: Jon Ball, Executive VP, Market Development, GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy Scott Strawn, VP, Burns & McDonnell Bud Albright, President & CEO, U.S. Nuclear Industry Council Doug True, VP & Chief Nuclear Officer, Nuclear Energy Institute
Journalists: Ken Silverstein, Forbes Jennifer Hiller, The Wall Street Journal Markham Hislop, Energi Media Rod Kuckro, Freelance