IAEA Increases Projections for Nuclear Power Use in 2050
For the first time since the Fukushima Daiichi accident a decade ago, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has revised up its projections of the potential growth of nuclear power capacity for electricity generation during the coming decades, IAEA official website reports.
The change in the IAEA’s annual outlook for this low-carbon energy source does not yet mark a new trend, but it comes as the world aims to move away from fossil fuels to fight climate change. Many countries are considering the introduction of nuclear power to boost reliable and clean energy production.
In the high case scenario of its new outlook, the IAEA now expects world nuclear generating capacity to double to 792 gigawatts (net electrical) by 2050 from 393 GW(e) last year. Compared with the previous year’s high case projection of 715 GW(e) by 2050, the estimate has been revised up by just over 10%. However, the realization of the IAEA’s high case scenario would require significant actions, including an accelerated implementation of innovative nuclear technologies. The low case projections indicate that world nuclear capacity by 2050 would remain essentially the same as now, at 392 GW(e).
“The new IAEA projections show that nuclear power will continue to play an indispensable role in low carbon energy production,” IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi said. “The report’s findings represent an encouraging sign of increasing awareness that nuclear power, which emits no carbon dioxide during operation, is absolutely vital in our efforts to achieve net zero emissions.”