PUBLISHED BY Energy Intelligence

Why nuclear exporters aren’t a security threat

Tim Yeo
Tim Yeo Chairman New Nuclear Watch Institute

The rising prominence of Russia and potentially China as nuclear exporters should not be seen as a security threat in an era when carbon-free electricity generation is needed to address the growing threat of climate change, argues Tim Yeo, chairman of the London-based New Nuclear Watch Institute (NNWI). The rationale behind this argument is explained in the Institute's new report, Energy Security in the Age of Net-Zero Ambitions, and summarized below.

In 2021 climate change has finally risen to the top of the world’s agenda. Alongside belated recognition of the threat it poses to the survival of the human species is growing acceptance of the need for the complete decarbonization of electricity generation. Any lingering doubts about the urgency of this task have been blown away by the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment.

Less well understood is how this affects energy security. All modern economies require a reliable uninterrupted supply of electricity. Normal social and business activity cannot function without it. With the exceptions of France and Sweden, however, no country has yet gotten close to providing its citizens with continuously available electricity without significant consumption of fossil fuels. 

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