Nuclear power in the USA is making a comeback. Did you know that the USA is the world's largest producer of nuclear power, accounting for more than 30% of worldwide nuclear generation of electricity!The country's 104 nuclear reactors produced 807 billion kWh in 2010, over 20% of total electrical output.
And did you know that at least 4-6 new nuclear reactors in the US are either under construction or planned for construction?Following a 30-year period in which few new reactors were built, it is expected that 4-6 new units may come on line by 2020, the first of those resulting from 16 licence applications to build 24 new nuclear reactors made since mid-2007.
And did you know that the federal government is encouraging this expanded growth of nuclear energy?Government policy changes since the late 1990s have helped pave the way for significant growth in nuclear capacity. Government and industry are working closely on expedited approval for construction and new plant designs.
There has also been consolidation in the industry, narrowing the playing field. For example, in January 2011 Duke Energy agreed to purchase Progress Energy, and after shareholders in both companies overwhelmingly approved, this $26 billion deal is likely to be finalized by the end of the year. The combined company will operate 12 power reactors, the largest regulated nuclear fleet in the USA.
I am personally not a fan of nuclear energy and glad that most facilities are not anywhere near Colorado (where I live), however, it seems to me that some businesses involved in the nuclear sector could benefit substantially from this renewed emphasis on nuclear power.