In a joint statement coinciding with the Cop27 climate conference in Egypt on what they called “the critical role of nuclear energy within the current geopolitical context”, the seven groups* called for additional support for nuclear research and development, the inclusion of nuclear in clean hydrogen strategies, and for policymakers to “fully acknowledge the environmental, social and economic benefits of nuclear power”.
If clean hydrogen is to play a significant role as an energy carrier, it will need to be low-carbon, produced in large quantities at an affordable cost, close to the place of consumption, they said.
Nuclear power can secure one of the lowest costs for clean hydrogen – as low as €2/kg, according to Brussels-based industry group nucleareurope – because it is dispatchable, meaning it can adjust power output supplied to the grid on demand.
The statement said different financial frameworks, both private and public sector, should allow greater coverage of nuclear projects.
“The role of nuclear power should be viewed from a strategic standpoint, fully acknowledging its contribution to security of energy supply,
affordable and stable energy prices and decarbonisation, in close cooperation with other low-carbon technologies such as hydro, wind and solar,” the statement said.
It said nuclear innovation and research into all reactor technologies should be accelerated for “fast deployment at global scale”, making full use of the non-electric applications of nuclear such as clean hydrogen production, industrial heat, district heating, desalination.
Additional support should be provided to nuclear R&D and education to accelerate the path to market of new nuclear concepts such as Generation IV reactors and to prepare the next generation of nuclear operators.
* The statement was signed by the Canadian Nuclear Association, the Japan Atomic Industrial Forum, the Nuclear Energy Institute (US), the Nuclear Industry Association (UK), nucleareurope, Romatom (Romania) and the World Nuclear Association.