Licensing Processes and Nuclear Energy in a Competitive Electricity Market

The licensing and regulatory process is an essential element of the nuclear industry and effective regulation has proved its value through the impressive safety record achieved by reactors operating in OECD member countries. As more and more electricity markets deregulate, nuclear electricity generators are increasingly concerned about every element of cost, as they compete with other sources of generation. There has been much advancement in regulatory processes aimed at improving their efficiency and effectiveness in member countries. However, the changes have not been sufficiently studied to provide feedback to member governments as to the nature and extent of the impacts. This study will investigate the impact of advanced regulatory processes in the nuclear sector in a competitive electricity market.

Key questions to be answered by the study are:

The scope of the project involves defining the regulatory processes (including the environmental impacts assessment process) used to construct, operate and extend the life or upgrade nuclear power plants. The regulatory processes will be studied to examine their impact from both the government and applicant viewpoints. An effort will be made to determine any qualitative effects of regulation as well as the tangible effects, such as direct costs, time and staff.

Related links

Last reviewed: 22 January 2010