“We weren’t welcome, but that has changed,” they say. Driven by the climate crisis, advocates of nuclear energy, starting with the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), came to promote its merits at COP26 in Glasgow.
“This COP is perhaps the first in which nuclear energy has a place at the negotiating table, it is taken into consideration and can speak without the ideological burden that existed before,” Argentine director Rafael Mariano Grossi told AFP. general of the organism.
In the years after the 2011 nuclear accident at the Japanese Fukushima plant, there was growing reluctance but now “the tables have turned,” he says.
In the context of climate change, the argument about its low CO2 emissions gains importance, mainly linked to the extraction of uranium and concrete for power plants.
“Nuclear power is part of the solution to global warming. It is not a panacea, it may not be for everyone, but it already provides more than 25% of clean energy.”
“Without it, we will not succeed,” defends Grossi, champion of this cause since he took office in December 2019.
“My first COP was in Madrid”, at the end of that year, he remembers. “I went there despite the widespread idea that nuclear power would not be welcome. Now, not only is it not badly received, but it arouses great interest,” he adds.
– Centennial reactors –
In Glasgow, he met with ministers and other officials, explaining that these technologies can replace fossil fuels.
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