Nuclear Energy

Industry meltdown: Is the era of nuclear power coming to an end?

The Beaver Valley Nuclear Power Plant near Shippingport, Pennsylvania.

NEW HAVEN, CT — “Is the nuclear power industry in its death throes?  Even some nuclear enthusiasts believe so. With the exception of China, most nations are moving away from nuclear — existing power plants across the United States are being shut early; new reactor designs are falling foul of regulators, and public support remains in free fall. Now come the bankruptcies.

In an astonishing hammer blow to a global industry in late March, Pittsburgh-based Westinghouse — the original developer of the workhorse of the global nuclear industry, the pressurized-water reactor (PWR), and for many decades the world’s largest provider of nuclear technology — filed for bankruptcy after hitting big problems with its latest reactor design, the AP1000.

Largely as a result, its parent company, the Japanese nuclear engineering giant Toshiba, is also in dire financial straits and admits there is ‘substantial doubt’ about its ability to continue as a going concern.”

— Fred Pearce, Yale Environment 360

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