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Business and Nonproliferation

Industry's Role in Safeguarding a Nuclear Renaissance

Business and Nonproliferation
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Rapidly increasing global demand for electricity, heightened worries over energy and water security, and climate-change anxieties have brought the potential meritsof nuclear energy squarely back into the spotlight. Yet worries remain, especially afterthe failure of Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi power plant to withstand the twin blows ofan earthquake and a tsunami. And the idea of increasing the availability of nuclear powerin a destabilized world rife with revolution and terrorism seems to many a dangerousproposition.Business and Nonproliferation examines what a dramatic increase in global nuclearpower capacity means for the nuclear nonproliferation regime and how the commercialnuclear industry can strengthen it.The scope of a nuclear “renaissance” could be broad and wide: some countries seek to enhance their existing nuclear capacity; others will build their first reactors; and many more will seek to develop a nuclear energy capability in the foreseeable future. This expansion will result in wider diffusion and transport of nuclear materials, technologies, and knowledge, placing additional pressures on an already fragile nonproliferationregime. With the private sector at the center of this increased commercial activity, business should have an increased role in preventing proliferation, in part byhelping shape future civilian use of nuclear energy in a way that mitigates proliferation.John Banks, Charles Ebinger, and their colleagues explore the specific emergingchallenges to the nonproliferation regime, market trends in the commercial nuclearfuel cycle, and the geopolitical and commercial implications of new nuclear energystates in developing countries. Business and Nonproliferation presents and assesses theconcerns and suggestions of key stakeholders in the nuclear community—commercialnuclear industry entities, nongovernment organizations, and government agenciesand nuclear regulators. Its analysis addresses the broad question of how, given theglobal expansion of civilian nuclear power, the nuclear industry can become a more active, sustained partner in efforts to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons.
Brookings Institution Press; October 2011
257 pages; ISBN 9780815721482
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