Many people think that nuclear power is not being added in the USA or that it cannot be added in time to help with climate and pollution problems. That belief is not correct. The world has 320 nuclear reactors in the construction pipeline This is an increase of 80 reactors from January 2007 when 240 reactors were in the pipeline
I think all 320 reactors can be completed by 2030. The world can double the amount of energy from nuclear power. I think more nuclear reactors will be added to the pipeline. Getting up to double the prior world peak in nuclear plant construction (24 in 1984) is possible even without radical effort and new mass production redesign (I think we should get redesigns ready for for the 2020+ period). I think 800+ nuclear reactors can be built by 2030 and all of them can be up-rated by 50% using MIT developments of cylinder shaped fuel and nanoparticles for higher and more efficient temperatures. A 350% increase in nuclear power by 2030.
A 20% power up rating application was approved at Vermont Yankee and is being made.
Expected new nuclear plant applications for the USA
Power uprate applications expected
Power uprate applications pending
My position on energy and climate:
I think a goal of 80% green house gas reduction is a tough target for 2050.
I think we need to maximize the use of all available options to get improvements in green house gases and pollution reduction as fast as possible.
We have to use renewables, nuclear, efficiency to get where we need to be.
France’s use of nuclear for electricity is an example of how much nuclear can help.
(80% of electricity generation)
Plus by switching to plug in hybrids at the same time we can shift more transportation over to clean energy sources.
If the plug in hybrids are efficient, then instead of oil we can use genetically engineered (synthetic biology) biofuels (ideally generated from engineered single cell organisms).
From 1993-2005, nuclear has been helping more as a better energy source:
Wood (biomass): 96 thousand megawatt-hours/per year.
Waste: – 259 thousand megawatt-hours/per year. Negative number.
Geothermal: – 190 thousand megawatt-hours/per year. Negative number.
Solar: (Usually everybody’s favorite): +8
Wind (Another favorite): 1345 thousand megawatt-hours/per year.
Overall, renewable energy in the United States has increased at a rate of 1,000 thousand megawatt-hours/per year. The nuclear energy figure is 16,203 thousand megawatt-hours per year for nuclear even without building a new plant.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
Known for identifying cutting edge technologies, he is currently a Co-Founder of a startup and fundraiser for high potential early-stage companies. He is the Head of Research for Allocations for deep technology investments and an Angel Investor at Space Angels.
A frequent speaker at corporations, he has been a TEDx speaker, a Singularity University speaker and guest at numerous interviews for radio and podcasts. He is open to public speaking and advising engagements.