"TORONTO -- Expectations of a sharp rise in nuclear generating capacity over the next two decades are likely overblown, a Canadian think tank said on Thursday, disputing conventional wisdom that a nuclear renaissance is in full swing.
In a report based on a 3-1/2 year study of the nuclear industry, the Waterloo, Ontario-based Center for International Governance Innovation said new reactor construction will be held back by a series of economic, security, and waste disposal issues.
'Despite some powerful drivers, a revival of nuclear energy faces too many barriers compared to other means of generating electricity,' Trevor Findlay, the report's author, said in a statement.
He argues that, despite claims in the industry that nuclear capacity is expanding, there have actually been very few new reactors started in recent years, and that nuclear energy as a percentage of global energy production has actually retreated since 2001.
Standing in the way of new construction are costs that can run up to $10 billion per new reactor, competition from other, cheaper, energy sources, the problem of safely disposing of nuclear waste, and concern about the spread of nuclear weapons, the report said."