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Breakthroughs: Flexible Nuclear Energy Systems in a Clean Energy World 

May 28, 2019

Vancouver, Canada

Organized by the CEM Nuclear Innovation: Clean Energy Future (NICE Future) initiative, this CEM Focus Event highlighted how nuclear energy, and in particular breakthroughs in nuclear energy technologies, support progress toward clean energy goals. 


LucidCatalyst's Kirsty Gogan, who is also the Executive Director of NGO Energy for Humanity, presented plans for the new CEM campaign on flexibility entitled “Nuclear-Renewable Hybrid Systems to Enable Modern Energy.” She discussed why the study is meaningful to the clean energy community, and the qualitative and quantitative benefits of various technologies across select power markets.


Speakers and panelists presented recent studies on flexibility needs in future low-emissions energy systems, and discussed innovative technical solutions for both new, advanced reactors and current nuclear reactors, which already operate flexibly in some markets. They considered the benefits of integrating flexible nuclear energy technologies with renewable energy in coordinated and efficient energy systems.


This CEM Focus Event featured:

  • The launch of a high-profile and accessible book for policy makers from the NICE Future initiative, titled “Breakthroughs,” featuring stories to spark the imagination and challenge pre-conceptions of power systems for the future;

  • The launch of new analysis by the International Energy Agency (IEA) and OECD Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) on the importance of nuclear power alongside other clean energy sources in meeting clean energy goals; and

Breakthroughs in nuclear energy are expected to:

  • Expand the ease and efficiency of nuclear and renewables integration;

  • Create more integrated and flexible systems that leverage the strengths of both technologies, with the potential to support expanded use of variable renewable energy;

  • Create new, economic applications for using any excess emissions-free energy;

  • Provide reliable, clean power for advanced transportation, including through energy storage options like hydrogen; and,

  • Assist energy access to remote areas.


Additional Background

Wind, solar, and nuclear power are all emissions-free technologies, putting out no carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide, mercury, or particulates that cause smog. Of these, only nuclear energy can provide both clean and 24/7 dispatchable power on demand. However, innovative breakthroughs, such as flexible advanced nuclear, small modular reactors, micro-reactors, and other next generation designs, will make it easier to pair nuclear energy with variable renewable energy sources, further accelerating cost-effective emissions reductions and allowing greater, more efficient use of variable renewable energy sources. Operating together, these energy sources can provide reliable, affordable and resilient energy, including to remote regions where ensuring consistent access to energy resources has been difficult. These technology approaches can also help address key global problems, like providing potable water, generating heat for industrial processes, and creating hydrogen for energy production and storage.


About the CEM Nuclear Innovation: Clean Energy Future (NICE Future) initiative

The NICE Future initiative, launched in May 2018 in Copenhagen, is led by the United States, Canada, and Japan, and is joined by Argentina, Poland, Romania, Russia, UAE and the UK. The initiative envisions a world in which nuclear innovations and uses advance clean energy goals. The initiative recognizes there is no one-size-fits-all solution to energy and fosters collaboration among clean energy supporters in exploring diverse solutions, including nuclear energy technology solutions, for clean and integrated systems of the future.

> See the agenda


For more information please visit the http://cleanenergyministerial. org/initiative-clean-energy-ministerial/nuclear-innovation-clean-energy-future-nice-future and https: nuclear-innovation-clean-energy-future

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