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New Nuclear Power Plants Need and Status ASQ-EED 31 st Energy & Environmental Division Conference September 12, 2004 Adrian Heymer, NEI , 202-739-8094 Nuclear Power Plants Current Status 103 Operating Units One under major refurbishment

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new nuclear power plants need and status

New Nuclear Power PlantsNeed and Status


31st Energy & Environmental Division Conference

September 12, 2004

Adrian Heymer, NEI, 202-739-8094

nuclear power plants current status
Nuclear Power PlantsCurrent Status
  • 103 Operating Units
    • One under major refurbishment
    • Average capacity factor ~ 90% over last 4 years
  • 20% of US electricity capacity -- Nuclear
  • 30% US generation is emission-free
    • 70% Nuclear; Hydro 18%; Wind 1%; Solar 0.1%
  • Eliminates ~700 million tons/year of Greenhouse gases
the need for new nuclear
The Need for New Nuclear
  • US needs 300,000+MW of new generation by 2025
  • Increased environmental controls raise siting and cost problems for fossil fuel plants
  • US industry needs low cost energy to sustain global competitiveness
    • A diverse and balanced generating portfolio
    • Non/low-emission base-load generation
    • Greater energy independence
  • Nuclear lowest cost base-load generating option
why no new nuclear for 30 years
Why No New Nuclear for 30 Years?
  • Until mid 90s, anemic operating record
  • Unpredictable licensing & regulatory process
  • Design/Construct-As-You-Go approach
    • Unreliable and prolonged construction
  • Cost of financing large capital intensive projects in competitive market
    • Need for innovative approach to financing
    • Not unique to nuclear
  • Need for certainty in spent fuel disposal
improved approach for licensing new plants
Improved Approach for Licensing New Plants
  • Make licensing process more efficient and performance-based
    • Resolve issues as early as possible
    • Make more information available earlier
    • ITAAC concept
    • One hearing -- opportunity for a second, if acceptance criteria not satisfied
    • Bank sites & pre-approve standard designs
  • Complete design prior to construction
financing new nuclear plants
Financing New Nuclear Plants
  • Significant changes since 1970s
    • Many companies not operating in cost-of-service
  • Wall Street nervous over improved, yet unproven licensing process
  • Large capital projects diminish financial performance metrics
  • Innovative approaches to financing large capital projects
    • Consortium approach
    • Public-Private financial structure for large projects that support essential national infrastructure
    • Loan guarantees, accelerated depreciation, low cost loans,…
public perception
Public Perception
  • Wide ranging policymaker support
    • Congress & current Administration
  • Majority of US public support nuclear power plants (60% vs 36%)
    • Greater among graduates
  • Public support is substantial, but not deep
    • Need for continuing education
    • Existing plants need to maintain high standards of safety performance
new plant status
New Plant Status
  • Three designs certified -- Eight in pipeline
    • LWR & non-LWR designs
  • Three Early Site Permits under review -- 2006
  • Three consortia testing new COL process
    • DOE-industry partnership -- awaiting DOE decision
    • 16 companies involved
    • Industry committed to multi-year project - $650M
    • Trial license applications being developed
    • Decisions to order ~ 2008
    • Start construction 2009-2010
new plant status11
New Plant Status
  • Combined construction and operating license application guideline scheduled to be submitted 12/04 for NRC endorsement in 2005
  • 24 issues linked to new licensing process
      • Most being addressed through the NRC review of the COL application guide
  • NEI Executive Task Force provides oversight of industry issue task forces
  • Interactions with Congress, States & Wall Street
need for continued us global leadership in new nuclear
Need for Continued US Global Leadership in New Nuclear
  • One third of the world has no electricity
  • Estimate 70%+ growth in global demand for electricity over next 20 years
    • If fossil, what’s the impact on the environment & price?
    • If not fossil, then?
  • US is a leader in nuclear power technology
    • If no new nuclear orders in US, technical leadership will be relinquished to Asia, Africa & Europe
generation iv hydrogen
Generation IV & Hydrogen
  • Without Gen III (AP1000 et al) no Gen IV
    • 50% of workforce will retire in the next decade
    • Knowledge retention a major issue
  • Hydrogen – need for pilot plant activities to test & develop infrastructure
    • Hydrogen is where gasoline was in 1890s
  • Huge potential for nuclear energy
  • Long-term need for simplified designs
need for involvement
Need for Involvement
  • Get involved
    • YGN, Dominion, a superb example of nuclear workers advocating, on their own time, the benefits & need for nuclear energy
    • Speak out & attend meetings in your local area
    • Write to your Congressman, Senator and local officials
new nuclear plants
New Nuclear Plants?
  • Yes, if:
    • Prove new licensing process is predictable & stable
    • Establish a financial structure for financing large capital cost projects
    • Nation gets serious about environment
    • Certainty on spent fuel disposal
  • Energy costs, the economy & environmental issues will overcome hard-core opposition
nuclear energy
Nuclear Energy
  • Nuclear power plants are safe
  • US needs a diversified and balanced energy portfolio that provides low-cost and reliable electricity
    • Nuclear energy is an essential element in maintaining US global competitiveness
  • More information at:
    • – Public website
    • -- for NEI members