The High Cost of Nuclear Power

Nuclear power is among the most costly approaches to solving America’s energy problems. Per dollar of investment, clean energy solutions -- such as energy efficiency and renewable resources -- deliver far more energy than nuclear power.

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Arizona PIRG Education Fund

The High Cost of Nuclear Power

Executive Summary

Nuclear power is among the most costly approaches to solving America’s energy problems. Per dollar of investment, clean energy solutions – such as energy efficiency and renewable resources – deliver far more energy than nuclear power.

This fact has important implications for America’s energy policy. By directing resources toward the most cost-effective solutions, we can make greater progress toward a secure, reliable and safe supply of electricity to power America’s economy.

Dollar for dollar, a clean energy portfolio can deliver more energy than nuclear power. Per dollar of investment:

• Energy efficiency measures can deliver greater than five times more electricity than nuclear power.

• Combined heat and power (which generates both useful heat and electricity for a factory, a school campus or an office building) can generate nearly four times more energy than nuclear power.

• Wind farms can produce as much as 100 percent more electricity than nuclear power.

• A solar thermal power plant in the southwestern U.S. – capable of storing heat to generate electricity even when the sun isn’t shining – can deliver as much as one-third more energy than a nuclear reactor.

staff | TPIN

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