10. The new face of nuclear energy

The race for Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) is on around the world and could determine the competitiveness of economies as well as their contribution to reducing CO2 emissions and producing green hydrogen.

The debate on the future role of nuclear energy goes beyond its own functionality as a power generation technology, the solutions needed for sustainable waste management and its place in the green supply mix. The possibility of maintaining and even increasing the use of nuclear energy is on the geostrategic dashboard as a way to secure CO2 emission targets and as the most viable alternative for industrial scale-up of green hydrogen. So the discussion is more related to the model than to the meaning of this technology.

The race to produce small modular reactors (SMR) has been unleashed in the world's leading technological powers, while advances are being made in fields of potential secular impact such as nuclear fusion. Various types of solutions are being tested to make them a reality and commercially viable, work is being done in the field of materials and distribution networks, but above all research is being carried out in the areas of use cases which should give meaning to this new variant, the first results of which will begin to materialise in the next decade.

The social and environmental vision

While campaigns to raise awareness of the risks associated with nuclear energy and the management of nuclear waste have forced the industry to boosting its commitment to innovationThe EU and the EU should not become an impediment to the deployment of these alternative solutions, which are the product of scientific and technological innovation, and which society has been demanding.

The race for small modular reactors may be of enormous geo-strategic value in the future, with potential effects on the competitiveness of economies, and will make a decisive contribution to the reduction of CO2 emissions.