Security of Supply
Unlike all other technologies (power generation from fossil fuels or renewables) the nuclear option will enable us to be self sufficient, providing security of supply with a ready source of low carbon energy to meet our growing electricity needs for years to come.
The nuclear option is not linked to market prices for oil and gas and is, at the very least, cost competitive with other forms of electricity production in the UK. It should be noted that in France, where nuclear power generation is the dominant technology, the price for electricity per kilowatt/hour to the consumer is just over half of what we pay in the UK.
Clean and green
Nuclear power is clean, environmentally friendly and immediately convertible into energy for the National Grid. It has the advantage of not producing CO2 emissions and other chemical pollutants that arise from burning of fossil fuels.
The methods for the disposal of the very small amount of waste produced by the reactors are well known, and need only political decision to implement.
The design of new build power plants is “passively” safe; they shut themselves down without the need for additional systems if any abnormality of operation occurs.
Decommissioning will be simpler as the size and complexity of the plant is reduced and as provision for it is built into the design. Waste will be much smaller in volume as much will be “burned up” in situ.
The Nuclear Industry is the most closely regulated and monitored industry in the world.
In the short to medium term, nuclear energy is the only practical solution to increased electricity generating demands.
Over 30% of the electricity in the European Union is generated by nuclear power. The UK currently has 19 operating reactors at 10 power stations, which provide approximately 20% of the electricity in the UK.
A nuclear station consumes much smaller amounts of fuel per unit of electricity generated, than a fossil fuel station, some 40 tonnes of uranium fuel per annum as opposed to some 3 million tonnes of coal per annum at stations of comparable generation capacity. (Source: Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform). Note: this assumes that no uranium is recovered for recycling in a Fast Breeder type system.
The UK Radioactive Waste Inventory is provided by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA). Its publication is one facet of the continuing commitment of the UK Government and the organisations responsible for radioactive wastes to openness and transparency in matters relating to the management of these wastes.