Investments in small modular reactors (SMR) could take away from funding toward wind and solar, according to a new report from nuclear financing expert Dr. Mark Cooper.
The report, “The Economic Failure of Nuclear Power and the Development of a Low-Carbon Electricity Future: Why Small Modular Reactors Are Part of the Problem, Not the Solution,” says SMR spending by 2020 could range from $72 billion to more than $90 billion just based on the two designs and the supply chains. Compared to estimates from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on how much would be spent on power generation over the same period, the funds for SMRs would equal 75 percent of the total projects investment in electricity generation, and “substantially more” than the projected investments in new renewables.
The report also notes that the smaller reactors could actually cost more than the traditional, larger-scale reactors, and that the private marketplace is rejecting SMRs as seen by announcements from Westinghouse and Babcock & Wilcox’s (NYSE: BWC) Generation mPower. Westinghouse said it did not have a customer base for SMRs and would switch its focus to developing and marketing its AP1000 technology. B&W is looking to sell a majority stake in Generation mPower and has cut spending on the technology development.
To read the full report, click here.
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