home Demand, U What Countries Rely on Nuclear Power for Their Energy Needs?

What Countries Rely on Nuclear Power for Their Energy Needs?

Are there countries in the world that use nuclear energy to provide more than 50% of their electricity? 

France is the only country that went much above 50% nuclear, achieving 75% of electricity from nuclear. It’s given it a long-term headache that will only be resolved in a few more decades as the reactors age out and can’t be refurbished. Thankfully, France exists within a continent-scale grid that can accommodate the inflexibility of the nuclear fleet, buying electricity when France can’t easily turn down the plants and selling France electricity when it needs it because it can’t turn the fleet up either. As President Macron of France has said, he used to run the Finance ministry for France and even he has no idea how much they’ve spent on nuclear.

Four smaller countries — Ukraine, Slovakia, Belgium and Hungary — also made it over the 50% mark.

Ontario in Canada is the size of many countries, with a GDP in the top 20 compared to countries globally and more people than half the countries on Earth. It has extended its nuclear generation to about 55% over the past decade, which is preferable to having their coal plants persist, but less effective than buying hydroelectricity from Quebec and building more wind and solar. They are extending their debt-ridden nuclear hangover by refurbishing reactors that don’t have a business case and amortizing the existing, long-deferred nuclear debt over even more years to prevent current rate payers from paying the true cost of the nuclear fleet.

The only country which has built a lot of nuclear in the last 20 years is China, and it has both built a lot more wind and solar in the same period in real generation terms and is slowing its nuclear build out.

Source: HuffPost

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