According to a study conducted by the Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA), nuclear power is gaining popularity as a power generation option.

The CERA report analyzes the global nuclear energy industry. In the United States, no reactors have been built in 28 years. However, due to some key trends, including incentives in the 2005 Energy Policy Act, many states are planning to construct new nuclear power plants.

In the United States, the critical milestones for the first wave of new plants in the United States are as follows:

  1. Construction and operation license (COL) applications must be submitted in late 2007 through 2008.
  2. Long lead-time components, such as large forgings, must be ordered in 2007 and 2008.
  3. COL approval, final board decisions, site preparation and major component orders must occur around 2010.
  4. Concrete must be poured after 2010.

Asia also shows a continued surge of nuclear power, and Western Europe will see its first new reactor in more than a decade with a second one planned.

Globally, electricity-generating capacity has reached 369 GW. With the addition of the currently planned 28 reactors, global generating capacity will reach 397 GW.

The report shows that over the next few years, manufacturing capacity and skilled personnel will limit the growth of the industry, but they are short-term constraints. Electrical contractors who want to step into fill these roles will seemingly have opportunities.     EC