Canada, USA, and Japan launch nuclear energy innovation initiative

nuclear innovation
The logo of Electricite de France (EDF) is seen at the entrance of the nuclear power plant as steam rises from the cooling towers in Nogent-sur-Seine, France, October 20, 2016. Reuters file photo by Regis Duvignau.

Nuclear energy produces nearly 1/3 of the world’s emissions-free electricity

At the 9th Clean Energy Ministerial(CEM) meeting, a new nuclear innovation partnership was announced under the leadership of the United States, Canada, and Japan, according to a CEM press release.

Called “Nuclear Innovation: Clean Energy Future (NICE Future),” the initiative will, for the first time, put the spotlight at CEM on nuclear energy in clean energy systems.

“Canada is excited to be a part of this initiative. Nuclear energy is already an important part of Canada’s energy mix and innovative nuclear technologies, including Small Modular Reactors, have a key role to play in the transition to a low-carbon economy” said Kim Rudd, parliamentary secretary to Jim Carr, Canada’s minister of natural resources.

“As a non-emitting source of energy, nuclear is, and will continue to be, an important part of our energy mix.”

It will highlight the opportunities for nuclear energy technologies to reduce emissions and air pollution from power generation, industry, and end-use sectors.

“I would like to acknowledge the countries and organizations that have joined the United States, Canada, and Japan in the creation and launch of the NICE Future initiative,” said Deputy Secretary Brouillette.

“Secretary Rick Perry and I are quite proud of this initiative and the ambitious program it sets forth. Having nuclear included at the Clean Energy Ministerial will create greater global recognition of its many unique benefits.”

Nuclear energy is an important contributor to global clean energy supply, both as a primary source of clean energy and by enabling other clean energy sources.

Globally, nuclear energy produces nearly one-third of the world’s emissions-free electricity. The International Energy Agency has also found that global nuclear energy generation would need to double from current levels by 2040 to meet global clean energy goals.

“Nuclear energy’s vitally important but under-recognized contributions to clean air are made even greater by constant innovation,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry.

“The NICE Future initiative highlights these contributions by reimagining nuclear’s advanced uses and applications. Nuclear provides a cleaner, safer, more reliable, and more resilient energy supply for our world.”

Countries participating in the NICE Future Initiative include the United States, Canada, Japan, Argentina, Poland, Romania, Russia, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. 

More countries have indicated strong interest. The International Energy Agency (IEA) and the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) have noted their interest and support for the initiative. The U.S. DOE National Renewable Energy Laboratory will serve as an initiative operating agent.

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