IEA & OECD/NEA call for policy-makers to create level-playing field for all low-carbon technologies including nuclear
The International Energy Agency (IEA) and the Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) of the OECD published jointly on 29 January 2015 the Technology Roadmap: Nuclear Energy Update 2015, which highlights the essential role nuclear power will play to limit global warming to 2°C by 2050.
One of its main conclusions is that “nuclear power is the largest source of low-carbon electricity in OECD countries, with an 18% overall share of electricity production in 2013 and second at global levels with an 11% share.” There were 72 nuclear reactors under construction at the start of 2014, which represents the most important number of nuclear new build since 1990. The Roadmap shows that in order to meet the target of a 2°C temperature increase, global installed nuclear capacity has to be multiplied by 2.3 by 2050. In this perspective, nuclear power is expected to account for 17% of total electricity generation in 2050.
The role of nuclear power as a reliable, base-load energy source should be fully recognized too and arrangements in the electricity market should be as favourable for nuclear power as they are for low-carbon technologies. To achieve this goal, the IEA and OECD/NEA urge decision-makers to ensure “a stable, long-term investment framework that allows capital-intensive projects to be developed and provides adequate electricity prices over the long term for all low-carbon technologies”. The Roadmap also recommends that decision-makers “also continue to support nuclear research and development (R&D), especially in the area of nuclear safety, advanced fuel cycles, waste management and innovative designs.”