The downstream side of the nuclear fuel cycle (Electricity generating costs)
As part of the Office’s continuing work in the nuclear field, Mr. Christian Bataille and Mr. Robert Galley, Members of Parliament for the Nord and Aube départements respectively, published in June 1998 the first part of their investigation into the downstream side of the nuclear fuel cycle, focusing on the work done in application of the law of 30 December 1991 concerning research into radioactive waste management. This document supplements that initial technical approach with a technical and economic study of the costs of generating electricity. To begin with, the performance of existing nuclear generating plant is examined, in particular the past, present and future contributions of this plant to the growth and competitivity of the French economy. Secondly, the competitivity of the different generating systems is analysed with a view to the construction of new facilities, using the method of discounted average costs which is at present the standard approach governing investment decisions, and identifying the different ways in which the said systems are dealt with as regards the cost categories considered. The potential contributions of external factor analysis and the calculation of external costs are then reviewed in order to evaluate the advantages and drawbacks of the different electricity generating systems on a more global basis. The report includes more than a hundred tables of data and cost curves upon which the Rapporteurs base their comments, conclusions and recommendations.
Short title:
Nuclear fuel cycle
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Project leader:
Office Parlementaire d´Evaluation des Choix Scientifiques et Technologiques of the French Parliament (OPECST)