We’ve made many successful presentations nationwide since 2010 and are currently planning events for this year and next. More details will be posted as they arise. Please contact us if you would like us to make a presentation or to debate at your event.

The cost of not using nuclear power - a practical example

To illustrate the long-term effects of national decisions in the energy sphere, consider the cases of Ireland and Finland. Both these countries proposed the Nuclear non-Proliferation Treaty in the 1960’s and were the first signatories of this treaty when it came into being in 1968. Within 12 years, Ireland had rejected nuclear power generation while Finland adopted it.


Now, Finland has a balanced portfolio of fuels in its generation mix, producing around 30% from each of nuclear, hydro and coal, with the remainder mainly coming from gas. Ireland, on the other hand, has over 60% from gas, 14% from renewables and the remainder is from coal and peat. As a result, Finland emits only marginally more CO2 per head of population than Ireland while using twice as much energy than us.


Critically, Irish households pay 50% more for their electricity than the Finns and our industry pays twice as much as Finnish industry for its electricity. This is a clear and practical illustration of the economic and environmental benefits that Ireland is passing up with its current prohibition of nuclear power.

Quick references



Advantages of nuclear


Find out more about the advantages of nuclear power in Ireland:

Nuclear is the cheapest

Nuclear is the cleanest

Nuclear power is the safest electricity

New nuclear power is ideal for Ireland


Supporters of nuclear in Ireland

Many Irish organisations have called for nuclear power to be considered here. (External sites - open in a new window).

ESB

EirGrid

Forfas

Irish Academy of Engineering

ICTU

IBEC


Political supporters of a debate


Calls for a national nuclear debate have come from:

(External sites - open in a new window):

Minister for Energy, Eamon Ryan

Dáil Joint C’tee on Climate Change


Exploded myths about nuclear


These facts may surprise you:

Reactors would fit the Irish grid

There is a solution for nuclear waste

We can afford nuclear power

Nuclear fuel is plentiful


Other information


General items of interest about nuclear:

Types of reactors

History of nuclear power

SMR - a suitable reactor for Ireland

Nuclear power is illegal in Ireland

Can we not just use Renewables?

Hydrogen - fuel of the future?

Who is BENE?

I want to be a Supporter

Environment: Nuclear produces the cleanest electricity - even including mining and waste storage.


Economy: Nuclear is the cheapest means of generating large quantities of electricity.


Safety: Nuclear is the safest means of generating electricity. This may surprise many people, but it is true!

Reactors that would be suitable for Ireland include the 180 MWe B&W mPower™ reactor - a modular, passively safe, advanced light water reactor. This will be available in 2022. See this 2013 technical update.

Health: While it is wise to be cautious about radiation, the health impacts of nuclear are often exaggerated. This is an interesting chart that compares radiation exposure from different sources.


Accidents: There is still likely to be no discernible health impact from the two major accidents at Western reactors (Three Mile Island in the USA and Fukushima in Japan). While serious, the health impacts from Chernobyl have been greatly exaggerated by some. Nuclear energy still has an excellent safety record.


Waste: Permanent waste storage facilities are being built in some countries. Others are moving more slowly because the quantities involved are small and the waste can be used in other reactors currently in design.

Westinghouse are also developing a small, 225 MWe, reactor to “provide licensing, construction and operation certainty that no other small reactor can match with competitive economics”. Watch this Bloomberg TV interview. Read a technical update presented to the IAEA in December 2011

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We believe that Ireland should at least consider the use of nuclear power in deciding our energy future.


If you agree, then please become a supporter of BENE - it is free and requires no commitment other than to broadly support our aims. Your name will be listed on this website here.


The benefits of nuclear power - reliable, affordable, clean, and secure electricity, along with high quality jobs for many decades, improved local infrastructure and national competitiveness - can only be brought to Ireland with the support of the people.


Many public bodies and public representatives have already come out in support of considering nuclear power - others need to know that the electorate is open to the concept.


Please support us - it is important! With more support, our case will carry more weight.

Small Modular Reactors (SMRs)! These smaller reactors will be easier and faster to build, reducing project risk and construction cost. SMRs have “Safety by Design” - learning the lessons from previous designs - and could safely survive events such as happened at Fukushima in 2011. They will be available in a decade.

This site was last updated on Thursday Sept 26, 2013.

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