Why Advanced Nuclear Reactors May Be Here Sooner Than Many Imagine

Ted Nordhaus and Jessica Lovering in GreenTech Media:

As the prospects for a nuclear renaissance in the U.S. based on conventional nuclear technology have dimmed, many nuclear advocates have pinned their hopes on advanced reactors that are smaller and utilize different technologies.

Yet many remain skeptical. Edwin Lyman of the Union of Concerned Scientists told the Washington Post earlier this year that developers of advanced reactors, like Bill Gates, are “misleading the public on how fast and effective” they could be commercialized or widely deployed.

Doubts about the timely commercialization of advanced nuclear reactors are not limited to longstanding nuclear opponents like Lyman. In a damning review of the Department of Energy’s nuclear innovation programs, David Victor, Granger Morgan, Ahmed Abdullah and Michael Ford conclude that DOE has “neither the funding levels nor the programmatic focus that it needs to deliver on its mission of developing and demonstrating one or two advanced reactor designs by mid-century.”

More here.