Nuclear energy is carbon-free and has minimal environmental impact and close to zero carbon footprint. Of all emission free sources of electric power, nuclear currently (2008) provides 73.6% toward world demand. In the United States approximately 20% of the electricity is generated by nuclear power. World population continues to grow (2.3% per annum, JAEA Symposium 2007), and such growth is anticipated for several more decades. Increased consumption by this population and the propensity of developing nations to embrace a capitalistic (consuming) form of economic structure makes it difficult to project increased demand. We can, however, quantify the amount of raw material (uranium) both produced and required to supply known or start-up reactors.
- Position Statement