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Growing attention is being directed toward nuclear power plant economics, with the distinct likelihood of shuttering currently operating plants in the not-to-distant future. The Department of Energy is leading efforts to characterize and understand the causes of the economic challenges, and devise real-world solutions assuring clean and reliable energy from nuclear power is available for the American public. Two recent reports (linked below) prepared for the Department highlight and address these challenges. The first report, Summit on Improving the Economics of America's Nuclear Power Plants, represents a summary of the engaging dialog occurring at the May 19, 2016 Summit on Improving the Economics of America’s Nuclear Power Plants. A second report, Economic and Market Challenges Facing the U.S. Nuclear Commercial Fleet, released in September 2016 provides detailed analyses quantifying the gap between revenue from electricity production and the costs of operating and maintaining nuclear power plants. These reports may be useful to those interested in working to retain the clean energy source of nuclear power.  

Convening Summit Final .pdf



The linked memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) describes the roles, responsibilities, and the processes related to the implementation of the DOE Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear (GAIN) initiative. GAIN is an initiative that is intended to provide the nuclear energy community with increased access to the technical, regulatory, and financial support necessary to mover new or advanced nuclear reactor designs toward commercialization while ensuring the continued safe, reliable, and economic operation of the existing nuclear fleet. 

MOU-U.S., NRC, U.S. DOE for Implementation of GAIN.pdf


The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), with stakeholder input, has developed a vision and goal for supporting the development and ultimate deployment of advanced reactor technology as part of a broader federal commitment to energy security, economic prosperity, and national security. The vision is that by 2050, advanced reactors will provide a significant and growing component of the nuclear energy mix both domestically and globally. In support, a goal has been established that by the early 2030s, at least two non-light water advanced reactor concepts will have reached technical maturity, demonstrated safety and economic benefits, and completed licensing reviews sufficient to allow construction to go forward.

U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)  released the first volume of a two-volume report entitled, "Exploring Regional Opportunities in the U.S. for Clean Energy Technology Innovation." The report can be found on DOE's website at: It is also linked below. 

Exploring Regional Opportunities in the U.S. for Clean Energy 2016_0.pdf