Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time and the goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions will be difficult to achieve without a significant increase in the use of nuclear power, International Atomic Energy Agency acting director-general Cornel Feruță said today at the opening of the International Conference on Climate Change and the Role of Nuclear Power.
Some 550 participants representing 79 countries and 18 international organisations are taking part in the week-long conference, the first on this topic to be organised by the Vienna-based agency.
The IAEA said nuclear power plants emit practically no GHG emissions or air pollutants during their operation and, over their life cycle, are the second-lowest emitting source of electricity after hydro. Currently, 30 countries operate 449 nuclear power reactors worldwide, generating 10% of the world’s electricity and one third of all low carbon electricity. In terms of emissions avoidance, that’s the equivalent of taking 400 million cars off the road every year.