The three experts outline the key setbacks for the industry in 2011 and the emerging trends that point to 2012 being an even more challenging year for expansion of nuclear power. They present a paper outlining key recent developments and those now underway that stand between the nuclear power industry and its long promised "renaissance." Factors addressed include: Fukushima's ongoing impact on U.S. nuclear reactor development; the possible impact of the turmoil at the top of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC); and the latest data trends on the impact of tightened post-accident safety regulation, rising construction costs, and stiffer marketplace competition from alternative energy sources, including natural gas.
The three speakers are:
- Peter Bradford, currently adjunct professor on Nuclear Power and Public Policy, Vermont Law School, former member of the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission, former chair of the New York and Maine state utility regulatory commissions;
- Mark Cooper, senior fellow for economic analysis, Institute for Energy and the Environment, Vermont Law School, and author of "Policy Challenges of Nuclear Reactor Construction, Cost Escalation and Crowding Out Alternatives" (2009); and
- Carol Werner, executive director, Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI).