Just released by a group called 18 for 0, the 47-page preliminary study Nuclear Development in Ireland makes the case for bringing nuclear energy to the Emerald Isle.
Electricity generation from nuclear fission is prohibited by Ireland’s Electricity Regulation Act of 1999.
Why 18 for 0? “Ireland is planning to achieve 70-percent electricity from renewables by 2030,” state the authors of the study. “Our independent research showed that adding 18-percent nuclear electricity to this mix would reduce surplus fossil fuel emissions to zero.”
Major findings: Among other contentions, the study says that:
■ The current national strategy for power generation is not sufficient to keep Ireland on a pathway to become a net-zero emissions society—innovative change to current energy policy is urgently required.
■ No technology that is currently permitted in Ireland is commercially available at the scale required to fully decarbonize the power sector by 2050—legislative change is also required.
■ A hybrid electricity system powered mainly by renewable and nuclear energy is likely to be significantly superior to one that prioritizes renewables alone, as it would offer lower emissions, lower cost of electricity and capital cost, lower use of limited resources (land and materials), a more reliable and stable power supply, and less reliance on imported fossil fuels.
■ An 18-percent nuclear power program in Ireland could directly provide 1,300 high-skilled, long-term domestic jobs in addition to approximately 4,000 ancillary jobs.