By Jarret Adams
“If the U.S. moves forward with new nuclear power plants the cost of electricity will be significantly lower than if we do not pursue new plants,” said Mike Howard, senior vice president of research at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). According to EPRI’s research, the cost of electricity in 2050 in a carbon constrained environment would be nearly twice as high without construction of new nuclear plants and coal with carbon capture and storage (CCS).
“A full portfolio of technology options is the least costly solution to decarbonizing the economy,” Howard concluded. The EPRI research showed that reaching carbon reduction goals by including new nuclear plants and coal with CCS would result in electricity prices increasing by 80% by 2050. Without nuclear energy and CCS, electricity prices would rise by 210% by 2050 – a significant difference.
At the briefing, Jerome O’Leary from the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters discussed how the revival of nuclear energy would lead to thousands of new jobs for craft workers, such as welders and pipefitters.
In addition, senior staffers from the office of Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and the Third Way, a progressive think tank, found common ground in their support for expanding nuclear energy in the United States to meet our future electricity demand and increase energy security.