Why New Nuclear Builds are the Future of the American Power Grid
The U.S. has committed to making the federal government carbon-neutral by 2050 this move toward clean energy aims for a 65 percent reduction in planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
When we think about renewable energy sources people traditionally think of wind and solar power. But nuclear energy is often left out of the clean energy conversation even though it is the second-largest source of low-carbon electricity in the world.
The solution to moving the American power grid to not only cleaner options, but to diversify and strengthen our options is abundantly clear: increasing the nuclear capacity in the country through new nuclear builds. The status quo says that, while existing nuclear power is fine, new nuclear builds are impossibly hard to get approved, if not outright banned.
Recently, state and local governments are beginning to revisit the many benefits available from nuclear power and have begun to loosen regulations around new nuclear builds. For example, according to the NEI:
Virginia’s Nuclear Energy Strategic Plan sets a path forward for existing and new nuclear plants.
Illinois, New Jersey, and New York’s Zero Emissions Credit programs preserved their existing nuclear assets.
Wisconsin, Kentucky, and Montana repealed moratoriums allowing these states to pursue new nuclear development.
Wyoming, Montana, and Nebraska incentivized new nuclear plants.
“The forward-thinking decision is part of a national trend to recognize the role of reliable, carbon-free nuclear power in our energy transition,” said Maria Korsnick, president and CEO of NEI. “The forward-thinking decision is part of a national trend to recognize the role of reliable, carbon-free nuclear power in our energy transition.”
The latest generation of nuclear power plants looks vastly different than their predecessors. These small modular reactors are made in factories, flexible, and capable of replacing an entire fossil-fuel-driven power plant. These reactors are able to bring a clean source of power and well-paying jobs to areas where the economy was previously dependent on coal.
“Removing antiquated policies like moratoriums on nuclear plant construction serves as a stepping stone toward a decarbonized future and ensures a reliable and cost-effective energy transition that creates good-paying, long-term jobs,” said Korsnick.
This new generation of nuclear builds will need to have access to reliable, experienced contractors to help them operate at peak efficiency and maintain their facilities to safety standards.
At ARC Energy Services, we’re excited about the future of nuclear technology in the U.S. and we’re ready to help nuclear power providers operate most efficiently. We are a Veteran-Owned mechanical contractor, supplying welding, machining, heat-treating, and NDE services to the power and process industries. We specialize in delivering piping and boiler services through planned outages, emergent work, and/or staff augmentation.