Press Release 05 October 2007
LAUVERGEON: NUCLEAR ENERGY SHOULD NOT
BE THE PRIVILEDGE OF RICH COUNTRIES
Roma, 12 November 2007 - "In a world enjoying a growing energy thirst, we have in our hands nuclear energy: a formidable asset to build an energy sustainable future. It means that one of the answers to the issues of achieving security of supply, competitiveness and the fight against climate change is already available to us," Anne Lauvergeon, President and Chief Executive of French nuclear energy company Areva commented today at the 20th World Energy Congress in Rome.
Lauvergeon said that the world is facing a third global energy revolution, an age characterized by limited fossil fuel resources and strong economic and demographic growth.
It is a world, she said "where the poorest countries are at risk of being the first victims" of the effects of climate change.
She added: "In these revolutionary times there is no place for routine or business as usual: the solution lies in creativity."
While admitting that nuclear is not the only solution for the future, Lauvergeon said there are uncontestable facts that make it an inescapable part of the solution of our energy future.
In particular, she said:
- It is a low carbon producing energy
- The cost of generated electricity is extremely stable and predictable for the next forty to sixty years as it is based on uranium which is available throughout the world.
- It is easy to produce within a small space area.
"Making a choice of nuclear energy means beginning a long journey - one during which you can never compromise either with safety or with security or with non-proliferation," she said.
Pointing to nuclear waste disposal projects in countries such as Finland and France, Lauvergeon said the disposal of waste is becoming a reality.
Concluding her address she said the nuclear industry must take public opinion into account as well as objections from its detractors.
In a press conference after the speech, Lauvergeon called for greater "standardization" of nuclear reactors in Europe. This goal, she said, can only be achieved with the co-operation of all the various European regulatory authorities.
"We need a united circle of safety authorities. This has started to change but we are very near the beginning."
The World Energy Council in partnership with Oliver Wyman (global consulting firm) has over the past year worked on its third Assessment of country energy and climate policy aiming to identify key areas for policy improvements and to understand how successful policies can be transferred from one country to another. more >