Currently, there are 61 nuclear power plants in the United States with 99 operational commercial nuclear reactors. On a global basis, 30 countries have a combined total of 436 commercial nuclear reactors. Currently, there are 67 nuclear reactors in various stages of construction.
Support for Nuclear Energy
When considering an investment in nuclear energy stocks, it is important to note that there is continued and steady support for the use of nuclear energy. According to the Nuclear Energy Institute’s (NEI) ongoing public opinion survey, which was conducted between September 21, 2016 through October 1, 2016 by Bisconti Research, Inc. and Quest Global Research, 65% of those polled in the United States are in support of nuclear energy.
Amount of Electricity Produced by Nuclear Energy
According to the NEI, as of 2015, nuclear energy provided 19.5% of the United States’ electricity, and generated a total of 797.2 billion kilowatt-hours. On a global basis, nuclear energy supplies over 11% of the electricity needed.
New Nuclear Reactors
In early February of 2012, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), approved Southern Company’s application to build and operate two new reactors in Georgia. In March of 2012, the NRC also approved South Carolina Electric and Gas Company’s application to build and operate two additional reactors in South Carolina. It had been 30 years since a nuclear reactor application had been approved, and the Georgie reactors located at the Vogtle plant represent the first ones to receive approval.
The first new reactor in the U.S. to come online was in June, 2016. This reactor is located in Tennessee, and commercial operation will begin by December of 2016.
Nuclear Technology Loan Guarantees
The U.S. Department of Energy’s Loan Programs Office made an announcement in December 2014. At this time, it opened $12.6 billion in loan guarantees for advanced nuclear technologies. These technologies include small modular reactors, molten salt reactors, and breeder reactors.