Nuclear Energy is America's Clean and Safe Energy Solution
Nuclear energy is a vital part of America’s energy portfolio. Nuclear energy already provides about 20 percent of the country’s electricity, and Wisconsin’s Kewaunee and dual-unit Point Beach systems generate nearly 21 percent of the state’s electricity.
Demand for energy is expected to grow in Wisconsin and across the United States. In fact, the state has experienced an average growth in gross state product of 1.7 percent per year over the past five years, while our country’s electricity needs are forecast to increase 22 percent by 2035. In order to meet future electricity demands, the United States will need to embrace a broad portfolio of American-produced energy solutions, and nuclear energy must be a part of that mix.
Nuclear energy is a cost-effective and reliable energy source, producing affordable, on-demand electricity at an 89 percent production rate. Nuclear energy also supports clean air, land, water and wildlife, providing the majority of our nation’s emission-free energy. Safely serving as a workhorse of the country’s electric grid for more than four decades, nuclear energy is essential to our everyday lives.
Emission-free sources like nuclear energy can help meet the growing electricity needs of both Wisconsin and the United States without polluting the air. Nuclear energy has perhaps the lowest impact on the environment of any other energy source and is one of the nation’s largest sources of electricity that produces virtually no greenhouse gases. Nuclear energy provides about 63 percent of the country’s emission-free electricity, helping to keep our air clean.
In Wisconsin, counties in the Milwaukee and Sheboygan areas have been designated as areas of “non-attainment” by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This means that pollution levels persistently exceed national ambient air quality standards.
The Kewaunee and Point Beach nuclear energy facilities supply 84 percent of California’s emission-free power. In 2010 alone, the Diablo Canyon and San Onofre facilities improved air quality by avoiding the emission of:
Moving forward with the next generation of new nuclear energy facilities will ensure economic prosperity and the continued development of sustainable energy in Wisconsin and across the U.S.
American-produced energy sources like nuclear power boost economic growth and support high-paying jobs that cannot be shipped overseas. On average:
Sources: Energy Information Administration and NEI