Asian nuclear energy briefing 2023
The need for energy security gives climate friendly nuclear power plants a new appeal – Asia now hosts about one-fourth of operational nuclear power units in the world and remains the main region in the world where electricity generating capacity is growing. According to the World Economic Forum, as of Jan 2022, Nuclear energy now provides about 10% of the world’s electricity from about 440 power reactors and is the world’s second largest source of low-carbon power.
In Asia there are 140 operable nuclear power reactors, 35 nuclear reactors currently under construction and firm plan to build an additional 40-50
- China, Japan and India are driving the dash for nuclear energy in Asia
- Across Asia there are proposals for another 220 nuclear power plants
- Germany and Italy are phasing out nuclear power stations
- Across Europe there are 15 nuclear reactors being built
- Concerns remain over safety and the treatment of nuclear waste
As world population grows, coupled with the quality of life that electrification provides – the global need for electricity increases exponentially. If countries are to meet their climate change commitments, the need for clean energy becomes paramount and must be top of every countries electricity agenda – providing a safe, secure, reliable and cost effective energy mix whilst meeting climate change demands.
Japan has 33 operable nuclear reactors, with a combined net capacity of 31.7 GWe. As of March 2022, 10 reactors had been brought back online, with a further 15 in the process of restart approval, following the Fukushima accident in 2011. In the past, 30% of the country’s electricity has come from nuclear; in 2020, the figure was just 5.1%. The plan is now for at least 20% by 2030. This will necessitate re-starting up to 30GW of Japan’s indigenous nuclear capacity over the next 15 years that should help to contribute to meeting Japan’s UN decarbonisation goals. Nuclear power is positioned to make a considerable contribution to decarbonizing Japan’s energy complex in the decades ahead.
Asia remains the main region in the world where electricity generating capacity and specifically nuclear power is growing significantly. There are currently 128 operable nuclear power reactors, 40 under construction and firm plans to build a further 90.
The focus of this industry briefing is to stimulate dialogue to assess the economics, current market conditions and the development opportunities for nuclear energy as part of the current and future energy mix to ensure decarbonization goals.