The economic future of nuclear power
Author(s)Joskow, Paul L.; Parsons, John E.
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In the last several years we have seen what appears to be revived global interest in continuing operation of existing nuclear power plants and constructing a new generation of plants.1 A recent International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report indicates that 24 countries with nuclear power plants are considering policies either to accommodate or encourage investments in new nuclear power plants, and that 20 countries without nuclear power today are considering supporting the use of nuclear power to meet future electricity needs. It projects as much as a 100 percent increase in nuclear generating capacity by 2030.2 The United States has taken a number of steps to encourage investment in a new fleet of nuclear power plants. The federal safety review and licensing process has been streamlined, and a variety of financial incentives for new nuclear plants are included in the Energy Policy Act of 2005. As of early 2009, license applications for 26 new plants have been filed with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), and additional applications are likely.3
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Economics; Sloan School of Management
American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Joskow, Paul L., and John E. Parsons. “The economic future of nuclear power.” Daedalus 138.4 (2009): 45-59.
Author's final manuscript