The Climate for Nuclear Energy

Nuclear energy is critical for decarbonization in the fight against climate change. But high-profile accidents, substantial costs, and concerns about waste management have kneecapped its expansion. As the climate crisis intensifies, the world is rethinking how to use nuclear energy to tackle ambitious climate targets.

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  • Gabrielle Sierra
    Director, Podcasting

Asher Ross - Supervising Producer

Markus Zakaria - Audio Producer and Sound Designer

Rafaela Siewert - Associate Podcast Producer

Episode Guests
  • Leslie Dewan
    CEO, RadiantNano
  • Shirley Ann Jackson
    President, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Show Notes

The climate crisis is considered by many to be the world’s most pressing issue. Today, nuclear energy is the largest provider of carbon-free electricity. But disasters such as those at Chernobyl, Fukushima, and Three Mile Island have shaped public opinion around its use. Nuclear energy could be vital to global climate action, but at what cost? Scientists, policymakers, and citizens alike are weighing the risks of nuclear waste against the prospect of continued reliance on fossil fuels. As the climate crisis intensifies, the appetite for nuclear energy grows.


From CFR


The Fukushima Disaster Didn’t Scare the World Off Nuclear Power,” Lindsay Maizland


Read More


The Activists Who Embrace Nuclear Power,” New Yorker


U.S. eyes nuclear reactor tax credit to meet climate goals,” Reuters


UK to put nuclear power at heart of net zero emissions strategy,” Financial Times


Mini nuclear reactors vie for key role in UK’s push to hit climate targets,” Financial Times


France, Czech Republic and others push for nuclear in EU’s green investment rules,” Reuters


Watch and Listen


Do We Need Nuclear Energy to Stop Climate Change?,” Kurzgesagt


The fight to rethink (and reinvent) nuclear power,” Vox


Tiny Nuclear Reactors Are the Future of Energy,” Vice News 


Nuclear power: why is it so unpopular?,” Economist


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