South Asia and Beyond

US To Up Nuclear Power After Decades

 US To Up Nuclear Power After Decades

The House of Representatives recently passed a bill that seeks to fasten the generation of new nuclear power plants, The New York Times reported.

The bill was passed in a 365-to-36 vote and broadly reflects the bipartisan support for the bill, which is also known as the Atomic Energy Advancement Act. The bill found support from most Democrats who support nuclear power as a clean energy. The Republicans, who have downplayed threat of climate change passed the bill saying that it would bolster the nation’s economy and energy security.

The new bill will direct the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), which overseas the nuclear power plants, to streamline process for new reactor designs and would also push for new nuclear power planst at the sites of retiring coal plants.

The lead sponsor of the bill Jeff Duncan from the Republican party said that the bill was a major nuclear energy policy in the United States in over a generation.

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In the Senate, both the party representatives have written their own legislation and are expected to talk and chalk out the differences in months to come.

In the United States, nuclear power generates around 18% of the electricity, but since 1996 only three nuclear reactors have been completed in the midst of concerns about radioactive waste and reactor safety.

The Biden government has time and again voiced support for nuclear power in a bid to move the country away from fossil fuels.

There has been a lot of new technologies that are being developed in the nuclear sector with industries looking at smaller reactors at lower price tag. But, for that to come through, the design of the new reactors that are being built will have to be reviewed by the NRC. Politicians cutting across party lines have criticised the NRC for being too slow in approving new designs.