September Nuclear News Wrap-Up: Nuclear is on the Rise
2022 has been an exciting year for the nuclear industry, particularly in the past month! As nuclear power becomes safer and more efficient, it presents a viable solution to the energy crisis. Here's a brief recap of the latest developments.
Hydrogen Power on the Horizon
A new hydrogen production initiative can help store renewable energy, allowing facilities to produce and transfer power with greater flexibility. Nuclear technology can produce hydrogen through electrolysis — with zero carbon emissions.
Now, several USDOE laboratories, corporations, and the University of Toledo have joined forces with the Energy Harbor. The resulting Great Lakes Clean Hydrogen (GLCH) coalition will use Energy Harbor's Ohio plant for a new hydrogen production initiative.
From Coal to Clean Nuclear
The USDOE recently released a study (PDF) on the potential for coal plants to convert to nuclear. They report that hundreds of plants could be converted, creating more than 350 GW of carbon-free power.
This could be an ideal solution for both the energy crisis and the coal industry's understandable concern over their future. The converted plants would still offer plenty of jobs. In fact, they would likely boost the region's job outlook. The DOE found that replacing one large 1200 MW coal plant with a nuclear one would generate an additional $275m in economic activity and 650 permanent jobs.
The Possible Return of Palisades
In another win for nuclear power, the Palisades nuclear plant may come out of retirement. Holtec, which purchased the plant in June 2021, initially planned to decommission the plant. However, they've applied for a federal grant under the Civil Nuclear Credit (CNC) program.
Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer has pledged to support their efforts with state funding and a power purchase agreement. As Palisades had employed 600 workers and created $363m in development activity, it would be a boon to the region's economic and energy needs.
Conclusion: Nuclear is the Solution
These recent developments point to nuclear technology as both a stopgap measure and a long-term solution for the energy crisis. While both costs and emissions increase, industries desperately seek clean, sustainable alternatives. Nuclear power can leverage the existing facilities and workforce to supply critical electricity in this time of high demand.
At ARC, we are committed to helping the nuclear industry thrive and are looking forward to even greater growth ahead.