Global Nuclear Power Plant Outlook, 2013-2020

by Gerry Runte

The nuclear power industry is beginning to receive serious attention once again with the promise of new reactor designs and a greater emphasis on nuclear as a long-term energy solution for governments globally. Unfortunately, the industry has a long history of over-optimism in terms of both the readiness of technology and its economics. Those parties interested in determining growth opportunities in the nuclear power business sector require a realistic appraisal of what is likely to emerge over the course of the next eight years.

This 189-page report answers several questions regarding commercial nuclear power:

  • Is the perceived resurgence of this industry plausible and if so, how much of a market does it constitute?
  • Are nuclear capacity addition forecasts accurate?
  • Are cost estimates for plant construction and operation reasonable?
  • How does the cost of electricity from these new designs compare with alternative sources of electricity?

FIGURE: Probable Range of Cumulative Nuclear Capacity Additions 2012-2020, MW

This report also provides context to the business of nuclear power, insight as to why it declined in the 1980's and then remained dormant over much of the 1990’s; what issues have been resolved since then and what barriers remain.

The objectives of the report are to equip the reader with realistic and objective insight into:

  • The nature of the nuclear power “renaissance” and whether or not it is a short-term or sustainable change in the industry
  • The Fukushima incident and its impact on several countries’ nuclear power programs
  • Cost assessments and comparisons of nuclear technologies among themselves and other electricity generation sources
  • A forecast of new nuclear plant capacity plans and capital investment
  • Scenario-based forecasts of nuclear capacity and investment
  • Probabilistic forecasts of capacity and capital

FIGURE: Probable Range of Overnight Capital Expenditures 2012-2020, MW

Companies Analyzed Include: AREVA • ATMEA • Atomenergoprom • Atomic Energy of Canada • Babcock & Wilcox • British Nuclear Fuels • Cameco Corporation • CB&I (The Shaw Group) • China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group • China National Nuclear Corporation • EDF • Framatome • Gen4 Energy (Hyperion Power) • GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy • General Atomics • Generation mPower • Holtec International • IHI Corporation • KEPCO • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries • NuScale Power • Pebble Bed Modular Reactor • Rosatom • RWE AG • Siemens • Toshiba • URENCO • Westinghouse

Gerry Runte Contract Analyst

Gerry Runte began his career as Nuclear Fuel Manager with General Public Utilities Corporation (GPU). At the time GPU was one of the few utilities contracting for all stages of the nuclear fuel cycle and was acquiring fuel for the systems for four nuclear units: Three Mile Island Units 1 and 2; Oyster Creek and ForkedRiver. After the accident at TMI‐1, Runte was a member of a small team that successfully raised the additional $750 million necessary to complete cleanup. He was the owner’s representative on behalf of Cajun Electric G&T’s 30% share of the River Bend Nuclear Station. In the late 80s and early 90s, Runte was Manager of Rate Affairs for GPU Nuclear Corporation, where he implemented a program to assure the corporation’s preparedness to withstand operational and management prudence reviews. In the early 90s, Runte was Director of Strategic Planning for the GPU System.

After GPU, Runte served in executive leadership roles at the Gas Technology Institute (GTI) and two of its fuel cell development companies, Mosaic Energy and M‐C Power Corporation. At GTI, he achieved 40% annual revenue growth and established the company as a key player in the hydrogen energy sector. In his current position as Principal at Worthington Sawtelle LLC, a marketing consultancy specializing in emerging energy technologies, and previously as General Manager of Clean Energy at ARES Corporation, Runte has played a central role in developing partners, structuring joint ventures, and guiding product commercialization in the clean energy and alternative fuels sectors. At ARES, he formed a strategic alliance with a waste‐to‐energy technology firm building plants in the U.S. and overseas. He also was instrumental in the launch of a biodiesel joint venture whose assets were later sold to a large biodiesel production company.

Runte holds a Bachelor’s degree in Math and Chemistry and a Masters in Nuclear Engineering, both from Pennsylvania State University.

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