Energy for Growth Hub
Op-Eds May 22, 2024 Cipher

Time to end the World Bank’s nuclear blind spot

Future of Energy Tech

Originally published in Cipher, May 22, 2024.

Every credible vision of a high-energy, low-carbon future includes a meaningful role for nuclear power.

That’s why last year more than two dozen countries pledged to triple nuclear power by 2030 as an essential step to meeting their goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. And that’s why more than 50 countries — rich and poor, from every continent — have taken concrete steps to include nuclear power in their energy mix by 2050 as a way to tackle carbon emissions while generating jobs and economic growth.

Despite growing interest in nuclear technology, the leading international development agency, the World Bank, refuses to even talk about it.

The bank has made only one nuclear-related loan, for a nuclear power plant in Italy in 1959. The retreat since then has, according to my conversations with staff and multiple members of the board, stemmed from concerns over nuclear safety combined with ideological opposition from a small handful of powerful shareholders within the bank. The World Bank’s latest energy policy acknowledges nuclear will be important for the future of many countries but explains the organization has no nuclear expertise and will, by choice, not add any.

Read the full article here.