Lobbyists’ Campaign for Small Modular Nuclear Reactors is met with scepticism

nuClear News, UK, Jan 2015 “…….Nuclear lobbyists have continued to try to build a head of steam behind Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) in the UK.
In NuClear News No.68 November 2014  we reported that Jim Green of FoE Australia had described this pro-SMR campaign as an implicit admission that existing reactors aren’t up to the job. SMRs are a new occupant in the graveyard of the nuclear renaissance – but the problem is no-one wants to buy one.
………..in August NuClear News No.65 reported that the Union of Concerned Scientists in the US point out that the economies of scale dictate that, all other things being equal, larger reactors will generate cheaper power. Even if SMRs could eventually be more cost-effective than larger reactors due to mass production, this advantage will only come into play when many SMRs are in operation. But
utilities are unlikely to invest in SMRs until they can produce competitively.
 The Washington-based Institute for Energy and Environmental Research (IEER) says SMRs will
probably require tens of billions of dollars in federal subsidies or government purchase orders
and create serious concerns in relation to both safety and proliferation. By spreading SMRs
around the globe we will increase the proliferation risk because safeguarded spent fuel and
numerous small reactors would be a much more complex task than safeguarding fewer large
Speaking at the Nuclear New Build conference yesterday, shadow energy minister Tom Greatrex
warned the government that “no one, including the Chancellor as he drafts his Autumn Statement,
should be fooled into thinking that small nuclear reactors are somehow the answer to all our

Read between the #thorium hype lines – future for Small Modular Nuclear Reactors is very dubious

“……..it will likely be later than the estimated 2022 before TVA has an SMR online. And, the decision on whether one actually gets built will rest with the TVA board.

In April, B&W announced it was restructuring its mPower program. Instead of around $60 million a year, it would only spend $15 million per year.

The company also laid off about 200 people in Virginia and in Tennessee involved with the project. The company said in a statement that it was having trouble lining up investors.

Also on Nov. 5, B&W announced plans to spin off its nuclear operations, including the mPower program, into a separate company called BWX Technologies……”  TVA shifts focus on Oak Ridge nuclear reactor, Knoxville News Sentinel 4 Dec 14