Friday, May 24, 2013

USGS: not enough uranium mining to meet high demand projections for power plants

A new report from the USGS warns that on the high demand basis for nuclear power through 2035, the identified resources from operating and developing mines is inadequate.

In the report, Critical Analysis of World Uranium Resources, they found that "This analysis indicates that mine development is proceeding too slowly to fully meet requirements for an expanded nuclear power reactor fleet in the near future (to 2035), and unless adequate secondary or unconventional resources can be identified, imbalances in supply and demand may occur."   [Right, head frame of the Arizona #1 uranium mine, currently operating in northern Arizona.  Courtesy, Denison Mines]

"At 2010 rates of consumption, uranium resources identified in operating or developing mines would fuel the world nuclear fleet for about 30 years. However, projections currently predict an increase in uranium requirements tied to expansion of nuclear energy worldwide.  In the low demand case, uranium identified in existing and developing mines is adequate to supply requirements. However, whether or not these identified resources will be developed rapidly enough to provide an uninterrupted fuel supply to expanded nuclear facilities could not be determined."

Ref: Hall, Susan, and Coleman, Margaret, 2013, Critical analysis of world uranium resources: U.S. Scientific Investigations Report 2012–5239, 56 p.

1 comment: