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April 2012 - Michigan Energy Forum - Kevin Krause


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Come join the Michigan Energy Forum on Thursday April 5 as we discuss the role of nuclear energy in Michigan and abroad in addressing global climate change. Panelists will include representatives from industry, academia, and the State who will share their views of the role that nuclear energy should play to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and generate economic development opportunities. While nuclear energy can be a very controversial topic, the purpose of this forum is to discuss the science, economics, and risks and rewards of nuclear energy and to learn more about what is going on in Michigan. Please join us on April 5 for this exciting forum.

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April 2012 - Michigan Energy Forum - Kevin Krause

  1. 1. Nuclear Power and Greenhouse Gases What Can (and Can’t) Nuclear do for Greenhouse Gases Kevin Krause Michigan Public Service Commission April 5, 2012
  2. 2. Nuclear and Greenhouse Gases• Background• Good News for Nuclear and GHG• Bad News for Nuclear and GHG• Really Bad News for Nuclear and GHG• Other Information
  3. 3. Background: Electricity Generation by Region as a %Michigan 2010
  4. 4. Background (cont.) Reducing the amount of electricity• We can Reduce GHG by Reducing Electricity Consumption• Historically, the amount of Electricity represented by these pie charts increases with time• Overall electricity demand (growth) is primarily a function of: • Economic growth • Energy Efficiency • Technological Innovation (conversion to electric cars for example)
  5. 5. Background (cont.) Fuel switching• Reducing GHGs by fuel switching • From Coal or Oil to Natural Gas • Reduces CO2 by about 50% • Practically eliminates SOX, NOX and Mercury • From Coal, Oil or Natural Gas to Nuclear and Renewables • Virtually eliminates CO2, SOX, NOX and Mercury
  6. 6. Background: Pacala/Socolow Wedge Terms BAU – Business as Usual WRE500 – Wigley, Richels, and Edmonds – stabilizing atmospheric CO2 at 500 ppm Stabilization Triangle – each wedge represents a potential reduction of 1 GtC/yr at the end of 50 years or 25 GtC over the 50 year period
  7. 7. Good News for Nuclear and GHG• Nuclear could provide one of the Pacala/Sokolow wedges• Requires building 14 – 1,000 MWe reactors/year for the next 50 years (all build rates are global)• The best historic decade, 1981-1990, saw a growth rate of 20 – 1,000 MWe reactors/year • The nuclear supply chain has done it before, and could likely do it again• With dramatic attention to the supply chain, a second wedge or part of one could be attainable• Plant uprates and higher capacity factors lead to more nuclear generation from the same number of facilities.
  8. 8. Bad News for Nuclear and GHG• One or two wedges is nice – but we need seven to stabilize at 500ppm CO2• Replacing existing nuclear generation requires building 7.4 – 1,000 MWe reactors/year for the next 50 years • 14 (for the wedge) + 7.4 (for replacement) = 21.4 (higher than the best decade)• In 2007, worldwide rate of build was 7.2 – 1,000 MWe reactors/year (assuming announced plans over 30 years) • 7.2 is slightly less than the rate required for current fleet replacement• The nuclear supply chain in the US has deteriorated from peak• Capacity factors cannot go too much higher
  9. 9. Bad News for Nuclear and GHG (cont.) Natural Gas• Very low natural gas prices • Many indicators in the current market point to natural gas as the fuel of choice in the short term• Natural Gas generation advantages • Very low capital cost for a generation facility • Short lead time for building a generation facility • Easy permitting process for a generation facility • Easy to site a generation facilityNote: Replacing Coal with Natural Gas is good for GHG emissions
  10. 10. Really Bad News for Nuclear and GHG Japan• There were 55 nuclear reactors in Japan• As of today only one is generating electricity • Scheduled for maintenance shutdown May 5, 2012• Reserve oil units have been used to partially make up loss of generation• Rapid building taking place of natural gas generation and renewables• Unknown if or when shutdown units will ever be restarted• Conclusion: In the short term Japan has/will dramatically increase its CO2 output. The long term is to be decided.
  11. 11. Really Bad News for Nuclear and GHG Liquefied Natural Gas tanker unloading in Japan
  12. 12. Other InformationReferences•Nuclear Power Joint Fact-finding ••Pacala/Socolow ••US Electricity generation•International generation
  13. 13. Questions?