Nuclear energy plays a critical role in keeping the United States safe. Energy independence is a core component of our country’s national security, and nuclear energy plays a significant role in an energy independent future.
Nuclear energy is home grown energy, providing reliable energy to communities across the country. As the source of one-fifth of the United States’ electricity, nuclear is a core part of our energy mix. By limiting our dependence on foreign energy sources, a strong nuclear fleet increases the security of the country and makes us less vulnerable to international energy shocks outside our control.
Our national security also depends on the uninterrupted availability of affordable energy sources. As an always-on source of energy 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, nuclear is critical to maintaining the country’s reliable electricity supply. While other energy sources can be put under great strain during periods of severe weather and become unreliable, nuclear power is always running, limiting the possibility of energy brownouts or blackouts.
The reliability benefits of nuclear are only set to increase as advanced nuclear technology continues to develop. Existing nuclear reactors run an impressive 18 to 24 months between refueling, but some advanced reactors have the potential to operate for as many as 20 years between refueling. Advanced nuclear technology opens the possibility for reactor designs that can operate without having to go offline at all and can be used for purposes other than electricity, such as hydrogen production for example, for use in fuel cell vehicles
The success of the U.S. nuclear industry reinforces our country’s position across the world. The U.S has led the way in nuclear development and innovation for years. Our nuclear fleet is the largest in the world, and we utilize the best technology and maintain the highest safety records.
But this dominance is not guaranteed. Other countries have committed vast resources to nuclear energy. They are focused on innovation, constructing new facilities and developing new technologies to gain a competitive advantage over the United States.
Losing our edge on nuclear threatens our collective global security. A commitment to maintaining a state of the art nuclear fleet is essential to maintaining our energy independence and ensuring our national security.
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